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Wondering if I can get away with a 1 ton

Gravel Rat

LawnSite Fanatic
British Columbia
The 95 F-450 I bought is developing problems I think I bought a good looking lemon :cry:

The truck is a XLT fully loaded its got everything but the leather seat. It has low kilometers 205,000kms 127,387 miles when I bought I have put 2000kms 1242 miles. The truck is in good shape cosmetically the body is still supporting the factory paint there is no dents no scratches or rust.

I have now developed a problem with the steering I don't know if its the steering box is going and the transmission is clunking now :confused:

Before I spend the money on building a dump body for the truck I might consider trading the truck for a F-350 4x4 and I can put a 11' dump on it. I haven't found a F-350 4x4 yet I may have to go to Alberta to get one (expensive) but F-350 4x4s are plentiful there here they are rare.

My original plan when I bought the 95 was going to do small load soil delivery again along with doing my junk removal and construction site clean up work which is my main work for the truck.

A F-450 is pretty much a must for hauling the topsoil etc because the payload capacity a 450 is a workhorse no denying it. The F-350s real world payload with a dump body on it is max 5000lbs so your looking at no more than 2 yards of material. A F-450s real world payload is 7000lbs so 2.5-3 yards I have had close to 9000lbs but thats pushing my luck.

For hauling junk a 1 ton can do that with no problems you can't really get more than 2 ton on the truck unless its old asphalt shingles. I only run 2' sides on my trucks for hauling debris so I can only get so much on the truck.
In the 12 years of hauling junk have I ever maxed the F-350s gvw with a load of residential or construction debris

I bought a 88 F-450 dump because I got tired of the never ending problem of no braking power with the F-350s plus I wanted a dump truck. I sold the 88 after 2 years I owned it the 460 was a little too piggy. I bought 89 F-450 diesel for fuel mileage and kept hauled junk I was dump less again so back to (labour intensive) I used it for 3 years or so then I bought the 95 this year.

The F-350s I had and the F-450s I had and have now had all the same common problem which is 2wd (Times of No Traction). The F-450s have one benefit they actually stop with a load the F-350s can barely stop with no load.

Anybody that has a 2wd dually knows they can let you down when you need extra traction. In the earlier years of hauling the construction sites were easy access so the 2wd was okay. The construction sites are getting in tougher building plots the access roads are getting steeper and more challenging.

You know its getting tougher when the lumber trucks have to put extra wood on the truck that doesn't belong to the customer. Its left on the truck after the customers wood is unloaded to provide weight to give extra traction to get out of the site. If there is a machine on the site to pull with usually the truck needs to be put a line on to it and pulled out of the site.

Now I'am back in the business again I know the junk removal business is a sure hit for me because I'am really the only one in the area that does junk removal. The small load soil hauling is still uncharted territory no one really does it here there is only one landscaper I work with hauls material to his own jobs. Dirt is hauled in large volumes ie tandem axle dump trucks carrying 12 yards most 5 ton single axle trucks sit parked 90% of the time there is no work for them.

The local residents have 2 choices if they need topsoil or sand etc either they pick it up in their P/U trucks or utility trailer or a tandem axle dump truck that will deliver you 12 yards.

The option of buying a 99 or newer F-450 4x4 is out of the picture I priced out a 2000 F-450 4x4 diesel 6spd cab and chassis I found for 21,000 its the cheapest I have found. So if I bought that truck then add another 5 grand for a dumping flat deck I'am up to 26,000 dollars then add taxes I'am up to 30 grand :(

A F-450 4x4 would be my answer but when your putting out a large investment which may or may not even pay for itself I'am not going to chance it.

To sum up the rambling is it worth while for you guys to offer soil delivery ?

If I go back to a F-350 the soil delivery really isn't something I can promote as a service I can provide the truck can't haul much more than a 3/4 ton P/U. When you charge the customer 100 dollars for a delivery and your not giving them that much of a benefit hiring me to-do the job.

When it comes to removing junk people are surprised how much I can cart away in one trip because I have the deck space. If I had 4 wheel drive the worry about getting stuck down these goat trails people call driveways would be nil.

If I stay with my current truck which would be okay its nice to have a XLT equipped truck. Its my first truck with A/C,PW,PL and a seat thats not all baffed out with things poking me in the azz :laugh:

So what I'am trying to figure out is should I stick with my gut instinct and not downsize in trucks just to have 4wheel drive.

The F-350 has 4 wheel drive but has not as much payload capacity and no brakes. The F-450 has payload capacity tons of braking power but 2wd the 2drawback is I have to repair my current truck and the PSD is sure piggy on fuel yet to break the 12mpg mark.

I'am a little frustrated that the truck I thought was good needs repairs already :rolleyes: