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Tow Vehicle Questions

  1. #1
    Your Father csmutty's Avatar
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    Tow Vehicle Questions


    I am looking to get my own tow vehicle instead of borrowing my dad's truck. What I am looking at is either a Ford F250-F350 or a Ford E250-E350. Looking for it to have a tow package, but am unsure about what powerplant I want as well. Looking for the 5.4 gas job or the 7.3 diesel. Looking for something around 10 grand if you guys know of anything. The hard choice is deciding whether I want a van or a truck. The van I feel would be nice for when I have to have things in an enclosed environment to prevent from theft and the elements, but the dirt bike wouldn't fit in the back so I would have to borrow my dad's still for the dirt bike.

    Thanks!

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    Lifer lrrs313's Avatar
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    Re: Tow Vehicle Questions

    Ummmmm...... Dirty bikes will fit in the back of a van no problem. I've gone a lot of places with 2 dirt bikes in the back of a van. That would be my choice. Don't discount the Chevy vans either, they seem to hold up better than the Ford vans.

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    Your Father csmutty's Avatar
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    Re: Tow Vehicle Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by lrrs313 View Post
    Ummmmm...... Dirty bikes will fit in the back of a van no problem. I've gone a lot of places with 2 dirt bikes in the back of a van. That would be my choice. Don't discount the Chevy vans either, they seem to hold up better than the Ford vans.
    I measured the height of the dirt bike and the height of the van and determined it wouldn't fit...maybe I should measure it again.

    And I am a ford guy lol. Couldn't go chevy.

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    BMW track whore e30addict's Avatar
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    Re: Tow Vehicle Questions

    I personally own an F250 and if I had to do it again, would probably buy a van. Why?

    One of my Lemons team mates has an E250 with the 5.4l. Holds tons of stuff, rides nice and gets 18 mpg if I drive it (20 if he does).

    The 5.4 is a torquey bastard and hauls 5,000 lbs. of car and trailer while stuffed to the gills in the van itself just fine.

    I like diesels but only put 5k or so on my truck each year so the gas motors are better for me. If you're gonna drive a lot the diesels rock. Problem is you're gonna want to tweak them...

    The vans are also cheaper to buy than the trucks and as you mentioned, you get to secure your cargo better.

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    Last edited by e30addict; 08-05-12 at 03:20 PM.
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    Lifer lrrs313's Avatar
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    Re: Tow Vehicle Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by csmutty View Post
    I measured the height of the dirt bike and the height of the van and determined it wouldn't fit...maybe I should measure it again.

    And I am a ford guy lol. Couldn't go chevy.
    Depending on the ramp, bike, bars, and specific van, you might have to lean the bike a little, but it will go. I've used 3 different vans to transport everything from 92 CR250 to an 06 or 07 YZ450F.

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    Your Father csmutty's Avatar
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    Re: Tow Vehicle Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by e30addict View Post
    I personally own an F250 and if I had to do it again, would probably buy a van. Why?

    One of my Lemons team mates has an E250 with the 5.4l. Holds tons of stuff, rides nice and gets 18 mpg if I drive it (20 if he does).

    The 5.4 is a torquey bastard and hauls 5,000 lbs. of car and trailer while stuffed to the gills in the van itself just fine.

    I like diesels but only put 5k or so on my truck each year so the gas motors are better for me. If you're gonna drive a lot the diesels rock. Problem is you're gonna want to tweak them...

    The vans are also cheaper to buy than the trucks and as you mentioned, you get to secure your cargo better.
    Good stuff thank you!

    Just found this one...
    http://www.autotrader.com/cars-for-s...24762728&Log=0

    Quote Originally Posted by lrrs313 View Post
    Depending on the ramp, bike, bars, and specific van, you might have to lean the bike a little, but it will go. I've used 3 different vans to transport everything from 92 CR250 to an 06 or 07 YZ450F.
    Ok cool thanks!

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    Lifer lrrs313's Avatar
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    Re: Tow Vehicle Questions

    That one seems like a lot of money for a 12 year old van. Look into the gas jobs, you should be able to find one for a lot less than that.

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    Your Father csmutty's Avatar
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    Re: Tow Vehicle Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by lrrs313 View Post
    That one seems like a lot of money for a 12 year old van. Look into the gas jobs, you should be able to find one for a lot less than that.
    The trade off is then with the gas job you have the head gasket/spark plug problems to worry about with the 5.4L. The 7.3 is pretty much bulletproof and they command a premium.

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    Lifer Chippertheripper's Avatar
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    Re: Tow Vehicle Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by lrrs313 View Post
    That one seems like a lot of money for a 12 year old.
    indeed it does. That must be some paper route kid.
    Ps: I'd get a van too. For real.

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    Super Moderator TheIglu's Avatar
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    Re: Tow Vehicle Questions

    I hauled a Ducati and a Guzzi to Deals in a Chevy van, plenty of space.

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  11. #11
    Bike Junky FireboltEric_MA's Avatar
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    Re: Tow Vehicle Questions

    Get the diesel, Gas is Ghey!

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    Rookie Rada's Avatar
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    Re: Tow Vehicle Questions

    While the 7.3 is a great engine I would not discount the 5.4. There are plenty of them on the road doing just fine (knocking on wood). The 7.3 has it's demons too just like any of them.
    My 5.4 hauls my shit over the Green mountains every time to go the the track. Doesn't even break a sweat.


    I would also vote van. Because if you Need a pick-up you can always borrow your dad's. Most times you won't. Not to mention a van is a hotel on wheels.

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  13. #13
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    Re: Tow Vehicle Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by csmutty View Post
    I measured the height of the dirt bike and the height of the van and determined it wouldn't fit...maybe I should measure it again.

    And I am a ford guy lol. Couldn't go chevy.
    I had a Ford E250 before the Chevy Express. The big plus for the Chevy is that they make a package available for cargo vans with cruise control. That's very hard to find in a Ford van. Our Chevy also gets much better mileage than the Ford did.

    Check the particular model. A lot of cargo vans come standard with transmission oil coolers and the towing package was just a trailer hitch and a heavy-duty flasher. Installing a hitch on a van is a 15 minute proposition.

    The tailgate opening is lower but on a ramp between the front and back wheel the bike is lower also. The inside of the van is something like 55" once you get through the gate (which I believe is 49") so while you might have to take off mirrors, some pretty large bikes will fit.

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    Bike Junky FireboltEric_MA's Avatar
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    Re: Tow Vehicle Questions

    Dodge Cummins...5 Spd.... Be done with it.....

    Your Welcome


    Ford is still trying to figure out how to even make a diesel, They change the damned line so often... stick with tried and true!!

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  15. #15
    Your Father csmutty's Avatar
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    Re: Tow Vehicle Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by Garandman View Post
    I had a Ford E250 before the Chevy Express. The big plus for the Chevy is that they make a package available for cargo vans with cruise control. That's very hard to find in a Ford van. Our Chevy also gets much better mileage than the Ford did.

    Check the particular model. A lot of cargo vans come standard with transmission oil coolers and the towing package was just a trailer hitch and a heavy-duty flasher. Installing a hitch on a van is a 15 minute proposition.

    The tailgate opening is lower but on a ramp between the front and back wheel the bike is lower also. The inside of the van is something like 55" once you get through the gate (which I believe is 49") so while you might have to take off mirrors, some pretty large bikes will fit.
    Personally I would prefer a passenger van instead of a cargo van and then just remove some of the seats. I used my uncles E350 with the 5.4 going to VT to Kitt's and loved it. Had cruise control, 3 rows of seating, full tow package with controller, rear seat A/C controls, etc. It was great. Was going to buy his as he is just using it to move to Florida, but the timeline for him to get all of his stuff moved is a year or two.

    Good to know about the height. Bikes I would be transporting wouldn't have mirrors etc though so I should be fine!

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  16. #16
    Your Father csmutty's Avatar
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    Re: Tow Vehicle Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by FireboltEric_MA View Post
    Dodge Cummins...5 Spd.... Be done with it.....

    Your Welcome


    Ford is still trying to figure out how to even make a diesel, They change the damned line so often... stick with tried and true!!
    The sprinter?

    Just looked to try to find one for sale and failed. Looks like you can only find a dodge with 2 seats, and in my price range I would be looking at 150k miles and up.

    On the other hand...

    http://hartford.craigslist.org/cto/3113702296.html

    And..

    http://hartford.craigslist.org/cto/3142237707.html

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    Last edited by csmutty; 08-05-12 at 04:57 PM.
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    BMW track whore e30addict's Avatar
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    Re: Tow Vehicle Questions

    Stay away from the Sprinter, it's a Mercedes 5 cyl diesel. It's a nightmare.

    The Dodge Ram 2500 and 3500 trucks have the Cumins motor.

    Fantastic motor; shitty truck.

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  18. #18
    Your Father csmutty's Avatar
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    Re: Tow Vehicle Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by e30addict View Post
    Stay away from the Sprinter, it's a Mercedes 5 cyl diesel. It's a nightmare.

    The Dodge Ram 2500 and 3500 trucks have the Cumins motor.

    Fantastic motor; shitty truck.
    Just out of curiosity...what makes it a nightmare? And the cummins isn't available in a van then?

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  19. #19
    Expert Agitator GearHd6's Avatar
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    Re: Tow Vehicle Questions

    Hey Christian..
    Have you been up RT 169 toward RT 6 in Brooklyn lately? There is a Ford for sale on the right hand side about 1/4 mile before you get to RT 6. I don't know any particulars on it except it's gray, quad cab, Diesel and it's got $8500 on the window.

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  20. #20
    Your Father csmutty's Avatar
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    Re: Tow Vehicle Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by GearHd6 View Post
    Hey Christian..
    Have you been up RT 169 toward RT 6 in Brooklyn lately? There is a Ford for sale on the right hand side about 1/4 mile before you get to RT 6. I don't know any particulars on it except it's gray, quad cab, Diesel and it's got $8500 on the window.
    No I haven't...thanks for the info I'll check it out tomorrow!

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  21. #21
    Expert Agitator GearHd6's Avatar
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    Re: Tow Vehicle Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by csmutty View Post
    No I haven't...thanks for the info I'll check it out tomorrow!
    Anytime.

    It's either an F250 or F350 and 4x4, they look very similar from a distance but I'd guess it's an F350. It was there on Friday when I went home from work so I'm assuming it's still there.

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  22. #22
    Your Father csmutty's Avatar
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    Re: Tow Vehicle Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by GearHd6 View Post
    Anytime.

    It's either an F250 or F350 and 4x4, they look very similar from a distance but I'd guess it's an F350. It was there on Friday when I went home from work so I'm assuming it's still there.
    Ok thanks!

    I also found this..
    http://hartford.craigslist.org/cto/3142237707.html

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  23. #23
    Lifer Garandman's Avatar
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    Re: Tow Vehicle Questions

    A 15 year old van is worth $6,900? A gasser of the same age in perfect condition is about $2,500. That's what, over 1,200 gallons of fuel?

    These threads always wind up with someone recommending a $40,000+ diesel, just in case you have to tow a 10,000 lb trailer cross country a couple of times a month.

    We did the math at work for our fleet trucks, which average around 20-25,000 miles a year. Diesels get better mileage and have much better resale value, even with high mileage. But they cost more, cost more to maintain, and diesel is more expensive than gas in the US. So unless you are driving well over 30,000 miles a year, it doesn't pay.

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  24. #24
    Your Father csmutty's Avatar
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    Re: Tow Vehicle Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by Garandman View Post
    A 15 year old van is worth $6,900? A gasser of the same age in perfect condition is about $2,500. That's what, over 1,200 gallons of fuel?

    These threads always wind up with someone recommending a $40,000+ diesel, just in case you have to tow a 10,000 lb trailer cross country a couple of times a month.

    We did the math at work for our fleet trucks, which average around 20-25,000 miles a year. Diesels get better mileage and have much better resale value, even with high mileage. But they cost more, cost more to maintain, and diesel is more expensive than gas in the US. So unless you are driving well over 30,000 miles a year, it doesn't pay.
    I want a diesel more so just because it's a personal preference. I like the sound, power, smell, etc. I have always wanted a diesel (my vw rabbit truck didn't count), and just love everything about them. I'm willing to pay a little extra for that.

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  25. #25
    Expert Agitator GearHd6's Avatar
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    Diesels hold their value very well and are very sought after. Just for reference. I sold my 96 Dodge Ram 2500 regular cab Cummins with 190k miles for $8500 this past winter. Granted, it was well taken care of, I owned it since 99 and kept it very nice.

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