Looking at Cabovers...need some suggestions with body

Discussion in 'Trucks and Trailers' started by LB1234, Aug 20, 2007.

  1. LB1234

    LB1234 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,208

    Well, we narrowed our choices down to a cabover rather than a regular pickup or worktruck. It will most likely be between the isuzu and the mitsubishi. We haven't looked at the isuzu yet but we have spec'd out the mitsubishi. It would be the FE180 standard cab.

    Our question is what to do with the body. We definately want something that dumps...we are sure of that. But question is stake body, grain body, or mason dump? Electric or PTO hoist? the PTO hoist is a few grand more...but is it worth the extra $ just to dump faster or at variable speeds? We are leaning towards the grain body with the curbside door. This will enable us to get multiple pallets in the bed...which is a must. I know a stake body will enable us to have more payload capacity but will it stand up to hauling of stone and boulders...mulch I believe it would but stone...not sure??? Another thing, do I go with aluminum or steel. The aluminum body will save on both weight and maintenance issues down the road. I can get the steel grain for around 2700 while the same body in aluminum is 4300. I'm also informed that the weight is almost halved for aluminum vs. steel. Which would help about 1500 pounds or so.

    Any thoughts comments, etc, would be appreciated. Thanks, LB:waving:
  2. TXNSLighting

    TXNSLighting LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Messages: 6,464

    Did you look at the LCF with twin turbos? I think i would go stee body personally. and the pto is all up o you. do you really need it?
  3. mdlwn1

    mdlwn1 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,443

    I had a Isuzu w-3500 12ft grain. Most of my work was lawn and mulch related. The mason body can only do 1 thing. The electric hoist will dump whatever you need it to. (my 02 would dump at least 4 tons) I've had more in it (stupid-carefully) but don't remember how much. I paid 28K for it new. If you're willing to buy the body seperate, you might be able tyo save a bit.
  4. LB1234

    LB1234 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,208

    LCF is made by Ford. I hate to say it but I'm through with american made autos. I'm not hear to argue american/foreign...but lets just say I've had much better luck with the latter. Granted it hasn't been in the field of medium duty trucks but after three pickups...two worktrucks it just gets to be a big pain in the arse. They don't want to stand behind there product. Anyway, again, the purpose of this isn't to argue...sorry.

    The only problem I see with the steel body is it doubles the weight of the grain body (so I was informed). It comes out to be around a 1400# difference. Right now with three passengers, fuel, 2' aluminum tool box, steel grain body, etc., it places me at 8275 for payload & towing.

    Our landscape trailer right now is a 7k rated enclosed trailer. Between the mowers and everyting else I'm around 6k loaded. In other words, that only leaves me a ton left pulling the mowing trailer.

    Our goal is to eventually replace our dump trailer with this truck. However, since we do landscape and hardscape installs we want to be able to tow our dingo and it attachments as well as the occasional backhoe or excavator rental. I'm not sure 8275 is going to get it done....???

    You figure an equipment hauler weights in the 2.5k range, our dingo weights 2k, start adding the attachments to it (two buckets, forks, cultivator, auger/bits, dozer blade, etc.) we are probablly going to be around another ton or so. So we will be right in the 6k range.

    LOL, now I'm thinking I should upgrade the truck to a bigger truck for a little more towing/hauling capacity...I guess that's why I'm thinking out loud and asking for some thoughts and opinions. An additional 1/2 ton with the aluminum body may be necessary.
  5. LB1234

    LB1234 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,208

    As mentioned in the previous post we have a dump trailer now that is electric and dumps off the battery. We've had it going on seven or so years. It has worked for this many years...I'm just curious how much better that PTO would be, if at all. There are many times where I wish I had a power down feature...not sure if the electric has that option...I'll have to inquire.

    As for purchasing the body, tool boxes seperate that was another question I need answering too. What are the pros cons of going through the dealer as opposed to having me do all the running around. Is the cost savings that significant...I'm also curious if anyone has placed a used body on there and then when the gotten the money saved up placed what they really wanted on there...say the aluminum body.

    Thanks again:)
  6. tnmtn

    tnmtn LawnSite Bronze Member
    from NE Tn.
    Messages: 1,022

    i have been thinking about the cabovers for a couple years. i see many pluses in them and it would be the perfect vehicle for me exept for one major problem. i have heard noone on all the threads on this and other forums say they tow well over 4 tons. the little 4 cylinder is a great engine and even the auto transmission may be good but it just doesn't have the power from what i have read. if the dingo is all you'll be towing i would say you would be fine. however, you mentioned towing a backhoe. unless your talking about a very small one i just don't see the isuzu/mitsu towing it very well.
    good luck and let us know how it does.
  7. LB1234

    LB1234 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,208

    I know, through research and searching here that is one of the major downfalls of the cabovers...so it seems. Although, I see a bunch of them around town. I'm not the type that needs to get off the line in a hurry or needs to be going 80 down the highway. If I can keep 65 on the highway I'll be happy. So the power aspect in that respect I'm not concerned about.

    Renting a piece of equipment is not done often. We used to do it 4-5 times a year for the bigger jobs. Surprisingly the dingo has been able to do everything we asked and more and we only had to rent a skid once this year to move 75 ton of QP. Although it could've been done with the dingo but time was short.

    Our goal is to have ten yards of mulch in the truck and then tow the trailer/dingo. Assuming mulch is 800#'s per yard and ten yards is 8k#'s there is no way we can do that.We'd be over by about three ton...not on the combined trailer/truck rating but on the vehicles capacity to stop that weight. I'm so confused:dizzy:
  8. Gravel Rat

    Gravel Rat LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,544

    The only problem with cab overs is your the first at the scene of the accident :laugh:

    The best small Cab over made was Hino they lasted forever. If I was in the market for a Cabover it would be Sterling.

    I don't trust the new Ford LCF with the V6 PSD not worth it.
  9. LB1234

    LB1234 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,208

    We looked into the HINO's but it was my understanding they didn't have a cabover. I'll have to look again.:waving:

    Once I test road the mitsi cabover with that turning radius and compared it side by side to the pickup my jaw dropped.
  10. Gravel Rat

    Gravel Rat LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,544

    They don't seem to make a cab over for the North America market anymore its all what Hino used to build was cab overs.

    The turning radius on the cabovers will be night and day compared to a pickup truck or a F-450-550 with the same gvw.

    One draw back of cab overs is the lack of traction and low clearance. If you stick to pavement I don't see a problem.

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