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Best truck for solo northeast lco

Discussion in 'Trucks and Trailers' started by eastportstar, Jun 14, 2009.

  1. eastportstar

    eastportstar LawnSite Member
    Messages: 68

    What have any of you solo guys found to be best truck ? I use a dodge ram 1500 4x4 6 1/2' bed extended cab. This thing is useless. my old 77 f250 was better. I'd thought i'd trade "up". Bed is too small to have much loaded. Suspension too weak for top soil. Back seat just collects crap. I'm thinking older standard cab 2 wheel drive with small dump / rack body 3/4 ton.
    What do you guys have that really works without being 3500 diesel dually. I usually work alone except for cleanups and mulch jobs. Tow trailer with 2 walk behinds. Mow 15-20 lawns a week. No bagging. I have a couple college students i get for cleanups (never more than 3 of us).
  2. 1993lx172

    1993lx172 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,305

    A Dodge ram 2500 reg. cab, long bed and 4X4 with tow package and/or plow prep should suit your needs just fine.
  3. eastportstar

    eastportstar LawnSite Member
    Messages: 68

    my dodge is a 1999 also. i don't like it. 5.9 with 150k. doesn't feel that powerful . i thought the old ford had much more power (351), held over 1 ton. f250 camper special. i think i'll look for another like that. i only go about 20 miles round trip 2 days a week for cutting, so an older truck is ok. maybe get a dump trailer instead of rack/dump body. wonder if i could haul my mowers in a dump trailer . can't imagine why not.
  4. Whitey4

    Whitey4 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,448

    Sounds like you need more beef and hauling capacity than I do. I have a 3 week old 2009 F150. Pulls my 10X6 enclosed great, no trailer sway at all, and I can do full yards of bulk soil or compost or mulch no problem. I put a yard and a half on it my first time, and that WAS too heavy.

    If you want to haul bulk over a yard, then I'd guess you need a dump, maybe a 350.
  5. SfTD_service_CENTER

    SfTD_service_CENTER LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 868

    i use a 03 ram 2500 hd and it is about just enough for everything. i also have a f350 ford 2000 with a v10 and it is also perfect for anything i do. they are both 8ft box reg cabs. i dont tow a wicked lot of weight. when plowing they are better than a diesel i have diesel trucks with plows i can use but they arent as quick and are sluggish seem to get stuck very easy. when i use a hemi or v10 i can crash into banks with authority! and i never get stuck and can always wiggle my way out on my own. i have been burried in a 7 foot storm we got one year but i seemed to get unstuck with a shovel in no time flat and that was using the ford. i run bfgoodrich mud terrain km2 tires on both trucks tall and skinny 255/85/16 on the ford and 255/75/17 on the dodge only complaint i have is wear they wear out iin 10000 miles and they are about 800 a set. any ford with a set of leaf springs in the front is a ultra good truck and is proven to out work and last any truck i have seen and i am a mechanic with 4 uncles than own big garages plus i own my own! ford has a reat chassi up to a certain year. therir diesel engine are another story and i dont recomend any of them! i dont care what model, they are all junk! dodge is also junk i have alot of problems with mine and i blew the tranny twice and i still have problems that they cant figure out. i have only had one thing with my ford go wrong i blew a sparkplug out of the cylinder while plowing, funny thing is i kept plowing for a few hours before i brought it in the garage and put a heli coil kit in. had more than enough power to keep going it just was really loud. she still runs great till this day.

    i cant wait to hear about how a diesel is better! lol
    ask any one you want arround here the only diesel i would look at is a chevy and i still think they cant get out of their own way! too bad its true cause if they werent so heavy in the front i would buy one! i would buy any truck that is better than what i have and i really havent found a better truck than a ford reg cab 1 ton with a v10 for all arround work they always run they never break and when they do they still will work and never give up. some v10 motrs though are known for the cam guide followers to fall right out of the head they will still run but evntually blow under stress if you hear one ticking like a bad lifter beware!
  6. 1993lx172

    1993lx172 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,305

    Mine has been great, Mine is set up for plowing so my power train is set up differently than yours is so I am probably getting more power to the ground than you are. My truck had an eight foot fisher plow on it before we got it, used as a maintenance truck at ware house of the company that my dad used to work for, so the 5.9 has some kick to it. What ever you get the three things you'll need are the 8' bed,4X4, and a trailer prep package, but if i were in you shoes I'd add a plow prep as well but that's just me.

    As for the dump insert vs. dump trailer issue, go with the dump trailer. From what I've seen they come with a set of ramps like those on a skid loader trailer so you should be able to get your mowers into it with out any trouble. In my opinion this is your best bet.
  7. FastMan

    FastMan LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 846

    Not sure if many guys have done this, but I switched over from a pickup to a full size van many years ago, and would never go back. Tools, trimmers, blowers, etc. just stay in there, locked up if you want. Just come home, take the mowers off the trailer and you're done. Thought I'd miss being able to use the bed of the pickup for mulch and stuff, but instead I use my trailer and it works even better. Easier to unload, and carries more bulk. And when carrying plant material, you can put inside in the van where it's protected from wind damage.

    GOOSEHANSON LawnSite Member
    Messages: 84

    check my signiture...2003 Ford F-350 long bed, dialed up on the EDGE chip and it is putting out close to 500 HP and a ton of torque....sweet pulling up to a rice burner or Comaro(these guys are always thinking those 200 and some odd HP cars are fast) and eat there lunch in a whistlin' turbo turned to race mode...trucks are getting pretty cheap now...
  9. SfTD_service_CENTER

    SfTD_service_CENTER LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 868

    that is a very over looked vehicle! that is a great thing to bring up i think this guy might actually be better off with a van and a dump trailer. he wants 2 whell drive so in that case a van is much better in the snow than a pickup and also the added security of the van also helps pluss it must give you a ton of space to keep all your stuff in like haveing two trailers!

    i have a full size 2500 serries van ill sell for 300 if anyone is interested it runs great just has a cracked block it is a 87 chevy but is in better shape than anyone would think. if anybody is interested just say so and ill get a pic for you!
  10. JDiepstra

    JDiepstra LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,511

    You are not making 500 hp. I bet you are lucky to see 350. Unless you have a lot of mods you are not telling us about. Actually, lets figure it out......... Your truck has 325 hp stock. Subtract 20% for drivetrain losses and you are down to 260 at the rear wheels. Edge advertises 80 hp gain for your truck so you are up to 340 hp. At your power level an exhaust is not adding more than 10 hp so there you go, 350 hp.

    Ford guys........... I tell ya.
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2009

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