I need a very dependable economical used 4x4 truck to do forestry work. It will be used on rutted slick logging roads in the middle of nowhere. I was wondering if I could start a discussion that would educate me from others experience on what most foresters and loggers use and why. Also what to steer away from.
If anybody had total cost of ownership data that would be nice.
Thanks for the help
I use a 4X4 2005 Chevy 2500 HD truck with a DuraMax diesel engine. These have the Allison transmission which is nearly bullet proof.
Probably the most important thing for a truck in the conditions you are talking about is 4WD and very agressive tires.
In the woods a shorter truck is usually beter too. I have a full size bed but only have the regular cab.
My cab is also a "work truck cab". That means it has rubber mats instead of carpet, etc. Much easier to keep clean. Also cheaper to purchase.
My truck has a private party sale price estimate of about $11,000. I expect the same truck with a gas engine would sell for several thousand less, but maybe not as cheap as you are looking for.
The truck has about 140,000 miles on it. The Allison transmission is a 6 speed automatic. They are generally regarded as very dependable. I think the upgrade when new was about $7,000 for the transmission.
I get about 16 to 18 mpg empty on the highway, still about 10 mpg hauling a 5,000 pound gooseneck trailer and 12,000 pounds of logs.
I had a 1986 Chevy 2500 pickup before with a 454 engine. It really sucked down the gas. It got 9 mpg empty and 6-7 mpg with a load. It ran OK, but was only 2WD, getting too old and cost too much to drive in 2008 when I got my newer truck.
I figure my 2005 Chevy truck cost about 35 cents per mile to drive empty.
I am replacing the brake lines on it today and that is the most significant repair I've had on it since I got it in 2008. Total cost for this repair is $120 for parts (all new brake lines) and the local shop said they would do it for $300 to $400 labor. I'm doing the work myself since I'm too cheap to pay someone else for something I can do myself. Their estimate was 4-5 hours labor. I'm about half done before the rain stopped me today and expect it to take me about 6 hours total.
The only other non maintenance repair has been replacing the left front hub.
Also what to steer away from.
If anybody had total cost of ownership data that would be nice.
What would you say is the best old used truck for use on Logging roads ? Say maybe no more than 4 to 6 thousand dollars.
I have a 2000 F-250 Ext Cab Super Duty, 7.3l turbo, 4WD, standard trans. Strong, reliable engine made by IH, no longer available. Being full length and 4WD, long turn radius. Other than that, I love the old, ugly banged up truck. I'll run it until the wheels fall off. Everything I've ever heard about the Fords is to avoid the 6.0 engine at all costs. The newer 6.7 is huge, strong but if the high pressure fuel pump ever needs replacing, most mechanics find it easiest to remove the cab to do it. The best all around truck would be a Ford chassis, Dodge's Cummins engine and an Allison transmission. But, no such thing exists.
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