View Full Version : Moved From Mobile Suites forum - HDT's

08-23-2005, 08:04 PM
Mike and Nancy
I agree with you totally Mike the factory is the only one that can initiate a change in the GW and I was just guessing about the axle's being the limiting factor it could be somthing to do with the chassis again only the factory would know. Mike my truck is a 95 F 350 and I was surprised( I thought it was going to weigh more) a couple of weeks ago when I weighed the truck by itself. It came in at 6570 pounds with full fuel the hitch me and my girlfriend setting in it. It's GCWR is 18500lbs with a maxium trailer weight of 12500. I just discovered that I made a miscalculation on the mty trailer weight. Turns out it came in at 15290 and I'm pretty sure that I mis stated that on another post yesterday. Anyway we are looking at F450's and F550's according to the offical Ford trailer pulling chart there is no difference between the 450 and the 550 in max trailer weight or max GCWR( 18400 Trailer weight and 26000 GCWR.) I think someone at Ford is going to have to explain that to me. If that is true I don't think there is much reason to build anymore 550's. I was leaning toward the 550 before I looked at the chart. I know that the newer trucks have a much much larger carrying cap. Welp anyway that's where I'am at now. Never know might be an 06 MS for sale soon.

Good luck and camping

08-23-2005, 09:32 PM

I think the difference 'tween the 450 and 550 is the hitch or bed weight capacity. I didn't look them over much once I got hit with the sticker shock. I know you aren't full time yet but you really need to look over the MDT's and HDT's. Especially the HDT's in regards to acquisition cost and capabilities. I got my Volvo cheaper than I could buy a 3/4 ton Ford or Dodge. After the mods I made to it, it was still cheaper than a 1 ton PU as well. They aren't for everyone but it's nice to know I got enough truck to pull 3 fully loaded 38' MS rigs and do so safely.

If we can meet this year I'll take you for a ride in it to show ya.

08-24-2005, 01:09 AM
You can get a new F-350 DRW with the Tow Boss package which is rated at 26,000 lbs also.

I spent a ton of $$$ on modifications to my 03 6.0L F-350 only to decide that I wanted a larger/HEAVIER 5er than I had planned for when I purchased the truck.

Rather than investing in another P/U I chose to move up to a Volvo 770 HDT for about what a new loaded to the hilt F-350 DRW Lariat w/Tow Boss package would have run me.

For 45K I got a beautiful truck with a 10 speed AutoShift transmission, has a large 12 volt Norcold refer/freezer combo, new microwave, power everything, dual air ride seats, large over under bunks, a nice work station that will seat four that breaks down into the lower bunk area, built in TV antenna, 110 volt shore power outlets in the cab, enclosed hanging clothes locker, storage compartments galore, two side windows in each bunk, a skylight to watch the stars by, dedicated air and heat in the sleeper with bedside controlls. two styles of privacy curtains that give you either partial or full privacy inside the cab, oodles of 12v interior lighting, dual 125 gallon fuel tanks, aluminum rims all around including inner tandems and it even has a place for a sink with running cold water should I choose to install one.

I'll either keep my F-350 as a daily driver since it's a kick in the A$$ to drive or sell it and use the proceeds to offset the cost of my Volvo.

BTW, Nice lookin MS!

george in azle
08-24-2005, 06:31 AM
I hear a lot of comparisons between buying new 3/4 ot 1 ton trucks and MDT or larger trucks. I have always thought that companies bought these larger trucks and ran them until they were no longer economically feasable or started breaking down.

How many miles are usually on these trucks when you guys buy them for less than the price of a new pickup? Sounds like I have been overlooking them unjustly.

08-24-2005, 07:04 AM
My 2000 VNL770 looks nearly new and had 438K miles on her when I purchased her a couple months ago which is considered low mileage for a 2000. From my research most 2000's will usually have between 525K and 650K on them.

BTW, these trucks are good for a million plus if they are taken care of.

For anyone intrested in a class 7 HDT that's ready to hit the highway as a toter check out this Web Site = http://onezman.tripod.com/

If your interested in locating a truck on your own and either doing your own conversion or jobbing it out Larry Z "above" also has a good publication he's written on converting a class 8 HDT into a class 7 toter.

Here's the Url for his publication which is in the form of a download = http://onezman.tripod.com/yourrvhaulercom

08-24-2005, 07:45 AM
I also have an HDT and for me it works well, however I think to justify an HDT you need think about how many miles you'll tow per year and how comfortable you'll be driving the big truck. I was driving my pickups 30K plus mles a year and by the time these trucks were ready to go out towing for the forth season I was uncomfortable with reliability. I spent a lot of time worrying about how many miles I was driving because of the cost of replacing the pickup. Now that worry is gone. I'll never wear this truck out. It's also much more comfortable to drive than any pickup.

08-24-2005, 10:38 AM
My Volvo is a 2001 model. It had under 500,000 miles on it and was an autoshift. It had several other nice options as well including a brand new 12 volt fridge in the sleeper area, all new rubber all around and all aluminum wheels. The appearance was practically brand new as far as the cab was concerned. You could compare easily as there were new ones close to it in the lot.

I bought it for $34k. I had to replace one seal on the transmission out put shaft at under $100.00 total labor included. I had the truck serviced and all synthetic lube in the differentials and transmission, I use dino juice for the engine (rotella). I had a very simple bed fabricated for it and installed at under $3,000.00 and the other mods I needed for motorhome classification for Montana I did on my own for less than $100.00 again. In my home state the 3/4 ton PU's were going for $40k and the 1 tons $45k to 53k. The MDT's were way more expensive than the PU's including used ones. A used "baby Freightliner (4400 or 4700 model I believe) were running over $65k for a 4 year old model.

I average 8.5 MPG towing in over 28 states including the Rockies, Ozarks and Smokie Mountains. The absolute worst I get is 7.5 and that is a ton of intown stop and go with ountains and headwinds. Not towing I average 10 to 12 MPG and of course I dismount my motorcycle and get 40+ MPG running errands and seeing the sights.

As far as I am concerned this is the absolute best and least expensive way to go for a FULLTIMER. It is not necessarily the solution for a part timer, especially if they cannot register a conversion motohome in their state like Arizona. You have the weight capacity, brake capacity, heavy duty exhaust braking, comfort AND quiet while driving. This rig is no wider than my old Ford dually and is way quieter and more comfortable to drive with slightly better towing mileage than I had with a 7,000 lb 5th wheel in tow. It's easy to drive and once you get over the fact you are higher in the seat it's great to be able to see over the cornfields at the countryside. :D

We use the truck as a daily driver and have been in numerous small towns with and without the trailer. We even got to within 2 blocks of Niagara Falls in one and parked to go look at them.

They, like RVing aren't for everyone but if it fits what you want to do it is head and shoulders about a light duty truck for towing in every respect except for tight spaces when not towing.

Jack Mayer
08-25-2005, 08:36 PM
My 2000 Volvo 610 had 528,000 miles on it when I bought it over 2 years ago. Cummins dynoed it and gave me a 200,000 mile warranty on the engine. the trans has a 750,000 mile warranty.

Like others have said - not for everyone, but for a fulltimer it sure beats anything else I could tow with.

If you want general info on HDTs and choosing between them and MDTs check our website, (in sig), and also www.dmbruss.com