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Tandem dump

Discussion in 'Heavy Equipment & Pavement' started by NEUSWEDE, Nov 18, 2012.


    NEUSWEDE LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 1,150

    Trying to find a good used Tandem Dump truck or wheeler as some might call them. Just looking for info as I am new to all of this. What type of suspension is best? 8LL transmissions or would a 13 speed be better? Double frame better? Obviously bigger motor is better, Found a bunch of 400 cats, any pros or cons to that?

    This isn't going to be truck that I will run forever, just something that I can get into and run a 20ton tag trailer behind to use for a couple of years and in the short term get my class A. Already have my permit.

    I know there is a truck and trailer section but seems like most over there just discuss smaller trucks.
  2. ksss

    ksss LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,162

    I have not owned a 13 speed but they are popular out here. I have had the 8LL and its a decent construction type tranny. Personally I dont like the CAT engines. They are expensive to work on and seem more thirsty than Detroit or Cummins engines. That is my view, I am sure others would disagree. The Chalmers is a very poplular offroad suspension here. I like my Mack Camel back. I have had two trucks with an 18 speed. I like this tranny. Always a gear for situation and its easy to drive. Unlike say a Super 10.
  3. Scag48

    Scag48 LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,067

    I prefer an 18 speed as well. You can never have too many gears. I've been driving a 10 speed for a year, it does okay but my truck is super underpowered so I struggle at times when fully loaded. I drive an '06 Sterling, it has a Mercedes in it that is supposedly rated at 400 but everyone that's driven it is convinced it's de-tuned, just doesn't have any balls whatsoever. So I'm not sure I can blame the engine completely, might need to twist the wick on it and she'd be good to go. Detroit 60 Series is a good place to start, N14 Cummins or even the ISX in newer rigs. Hate to say it, but I have a soft spot for a 3406 Cat if you're looking at older rigs. Stay away from bagged trucks for vocational use, they do exist here and there. Nice ride until you blow one up. Walking beam (Hendrickson) is my preference for dump trucks as they will articulate a little more while off road allowing for more tire on the ground while traversing rough ground. However, they ride a little rough unloaded.

    NEUSWEDE LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 1,150

    Thanks for the input from both of you. I have been looking for sometime now and I think I am getting better at seeing what is worth it and what isn't.

    Couple more questions, Lockers worth it or just a good think to have when getting off road? Also spoke wheels, the kind where the center part is part of the Axel, any downside to this outside of not being able to have shiny Alcoa wheels?

    Any input on this truck http://www.truckpaper.com/listingsdetail/detail.aspx?OHID=3806569&dlr=1&pcid=2000739204
    they have 2 identical th other is a year older but same mileage which looks like they were from a contractor but the mileage seems decent for their years.
  5. 4 seasons lawn&land

    4 seasons lawn&land LawnSite Gold Member
    from NY
    Messages: 3,614

    As a newbie to hauling heavy I jumped on the first automatic I came upon. Shifting the big rigs is not like conventional shifting. Every year you hear about an experienced truck driver failing to downshift before a hill and losing it.

    NEUSWEDE LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 1,150

    Yea I would like to start on an automatic would defintely be one lass thing to think about but can't find any that are not newer and expensive. I have to learn at some point and that is the main reason of starting off with an older truck.
  7. Kepple Services

    Kepple Services LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 374

    Lockers are worth every penny. Also if you can find a truck with both axl and wheel lock you are golden. I have 3 sterlings, a gmc and a Pete. All are a bit different. We have a walking beam on one of the sterlings and it's good until you wear out the bushings. Then it wanders all over the road and wears out rear tires. We have airbags on the pete(it's a tractor also, not a dump) and it rides nice but off road it sucks. As for transmissions. We have 2 autos, they are nice until your stuck... Two 8ll and the other is a 13 speed. I like the 10 speeds over the 13.. Drives easier I think.
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  8. 4 seasons lawn&land

    4 seasons lawn&land LawnSite Gold Member
    from NY
    Messages: 3,614

    Ya my truck has diff lock and on slick grass/dirt those tires will both spin around really easy

    NEUSWEDE LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 1,150

  10. toomuchtime

    toomuchtime LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 267

    I prefer a 13 spd in a dump if that cannot be had try to find a super 10. I would not do a straight ten under 425HP it will be a dog if you have any elevation changes. 8LL are not bad but most around here with 8LL are ex cement trucks tend to have the smaller motors in them for weight savings not a good combo for a dump imo.

    make sure it has a jake brake. Double frame is nice but unless your hauling boulders demo etc I would not say its not a must. If the truck is going to be a primary hauler on road most of the time I would get something with airbags. If your going to be off road alot nothing can beat a walking beam suspension for traction etc.

    make sure you have locking diff on the truck no need for two unless your going to be mud bogging lol . I ve never got either of my trucks stuck and ive put them through alot.
    Good luck

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