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Discussion in 'Trucks and Trailers' started by KraigLawn, Feb 1, 2004.
Nah, here ya go:
Sorry about that:
I admire youur love for American Trucks young man, I love fords to death, but I also believe in using the right tool for the right job. I've can only put up wity so much unfounded banter. I do believe it's time to educate you. Trucks like the International you showed, are absolutely great trucks. I love that DT466E engine they come with. It's one heck of an engine. But.......Trucks like that are not even close to being appropriate for this line of work (now it's time to methodically squash your idea, point, by point).
1. Expense. Trucks like that Intl will cost so much more than an Isuzu NPR, you'd increase your overhead so much more than you would if you bought an NPR, or a Mitsi, it's not even funny.
2. The right tool for the right job. You don't need a DT466E sitting between the frame rails of a lawn care truck. If that isn't hitting a fly with a sledge hammer, I don't know what is.
3. Size. Those trucks are way too big for this line of work. Due to clogged streets, I am sometimes required to park in people's driveways, even though I don't like to do it. My truck is around 10k lbs with my equipment in it. It has never cracked a concrete drive, and has never rutted an asphalt drive. If I used an Intl to park in their drives (which I never would), I'd definitely have these kind of problems. The Intl style trucks are one heck of alot heavier than the cab over trucks.
4. Fuel bills. I don't need to tell you how much more you'd be paying for fuel with an Intl compared to a cab over.
5. Manuverabilty. Cab over trucks have excellent turning radiuses. Some like mine have a tighter turning radius than a Ford Mustang. Intl's have absolutely horrible turning radiuses. Before you ask. I drive Intl's at work all the time. I know this from first hand experience.
6. Loading, and unloading. I ordered the longest ramp system avaliable for a box truck that is to be used for lawn care. I had to do that because of the height of the back of my truck. I have a ZTR, and didn't want to have any problems getting it into my truck, under any conditions. The trucks you're talking about are dock-height trucks. They have boxes that sit much higher than cab over trucks like mine. There are no ready made ramp systems for a truck that height, that would be appropriate for this industy. You'd have to pay to have one made, and it would have to be huge to give you a reasonable approach angle into the back of the truck.
7. Comfort. Cab over trucks aremade to be much more comfortable to run around town in. They're enjoyable to drive. You really don't feel like you're driving a truck. Trucks like my NPR have great acceleration for a truck, it brakes comfortably, gives you so much better vision of everything outside compared to the Intls, and their steering feel is much more comfortable. Their low cab forward design is offered for people who want a truck that is easy to get in, and out of, time after time throughout the day. Getting in, and out of the bigger trucks like your Intl is not fun at all (especially if you have to do it all day). I can't imagine having to do it every time I pulled up to an account.
8. Insurance. The cost of insuring a big conventional truck like the ones your talking about is astronomical, along with registering one. My NPR costs me a little over $320 per year to insure, with full coverage. You're not going to get anywhere near that price on your big trucks.
Your argument about durability, and cab overs not being sturdy enough is extremely weak. Isuzus, and Mitsis with the diesel engines, are 500K mile trucks, if taken care of. The Intl's with their DT466E's are million mile trucks. That's nice that they will last for so many miles, but I sure don't plan on putting over 400K miles on the same truck. I'll long since be into a different one by then, as will most people on this forum. Again we get back to the when is enough, enough situation. Ask Paponte if his truck has lasted a long time. His looks to be holding up just fine.
If you're one of those people that just has to have an American name on the front of your truck. Go buy a Chevy 4500, or a GMC 4500. Know what the difference between a Chevy 4500, or a GMC 4500 cab over box truck, and an Isuzu NPR box truck is? The only difference between these two trucks is the name that sits at the bottom of their windshields. One has the word "Isuzu" at the base of it's windshield, and the other has "Chevy" or "GMC" at the base of it's windshield. That should put you at ease young man. You can get a truck that's appropriate for this line of work, and still be driving a truck with an American name on it. How convenient is that.
Fact is that cab over trucks like the Isuzu NPR's, Mitsis, and oh yeah don't forget the Chevy and GMC 4500's, are perfect for this line of work. The bigger American trucks are absolutely great trucks, but not good at all at doing this kind of work.
I believe it's your turn now to try, and find fault with at least one of the things I said. Good luck, because everything I said is true.
I will try to post both my cabover\trailer combination that I use for lawncare, and the oil truck i drive daily off season to debunk the youngun's view of using an International truck for lawn maintenance. When you reach the age to drive and posess a CDL license, and drive all types of vehicles such as Victor and I have, then blast away with your opinions. Until then, hearsay from relatives no matter how valued you may view them, don't cut it here. People come here for advice from EXPERIENCED viewpoints. Not from 16 yr olds who debate and argue without merit the pro's and con's of particular equipment. When someone asks for an opinion on a Toro Timecutter, then step up to the plate. Going forward with these pictures, what Victor said about overkill on using an International is an excelent opinion. Try getting in and out of this oil truck 40 times a day, manuvering within traffic, not to mention tiring from shifting and turning all day. For lawn care the Isuzu\Mits are far away the best option in my opinion coming from a driver of all types of vehicles. I also own a 2003 GMC HD 4x4 extended cab which I give to my guys on the other mowing crew so I can drive my 96 Cabover. If I didn't have to plow and need a personal car, I would have bought another cabover and skipped the GMC. I can tow my 16 foot trailer loaded with 2 Zmasters and a walk behind behind my Isuzu without even feeling the slightest drag. Eventually, I would like to design a portable ramp system instead of a dedicated one like Victor's, because of the multi use of the cabover for other work. We just put a hitch on it and go.
Here it is with the trailer that is towed behind it.
I have to admit that I love his zeal for American trucks. I'm not gonna try, and fool anyone and say that if I was in the market for a larger dump truck, that i wouldn't get an International 4900, a Topkick, or more than likely, an L-8000. I'd get one in a second. Trucks like that make awsome dump, and heavy work trucks. There's no way around the fact that you just can beat them when it comes to that kind of work. Again though, it's a matter of the right tool for the right job.
I agree wholeheartedly that the international is a great choice if you want a heavy duty dump truck or for oil trucks, etc.. . But it is no way a conceivable idea if you do just maintenance. Getting good help is hard enough let alone trying to find CDL licensed operators up here. I know of n1alx's uncle's company up north here. He's right, it's quite a large company. But they do trucking\shipping. I'm sure if he asked his uncle how they would be for light and medium duty use in the landscaping industry, he would probably say pretty good. Even my oil company owner says he tried the FRR Izusu version cabover and had problems with repairs and locating parts. But again, they have a great fit for light to medium duty use which is what they are intended for, not trucking or oil delivery.
lbmd1, I made my own ramps for the back of my cube van. I also cut out the rear 4 feet of the floor and made a 4" beavertail inside the van. This allowed me to make a ramp that was the same height as the box and in two pieces. I made the hinges myself so I was able to make the ramps removable for the times when I don't need the ramps. I can easily lift the ramps off myself. There are pics here somewhere of my ramps if you search using my name. I just moved so the pics are in a box somewhere. We're looking for a cab and chassis to mount a 20' flat deck that I already have so we can have an open one too.
Who's your insurance agent? Allstate quoted me $1100. for a new 2004 in Montana. . .