Should I Stick With My Truck? Buy "new"?

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My truck is a 2001 F350. BASE model - only options are 4x4, LS rear and heavy service suspension. No AC, no power windows, vinyl seat ... the only thing I would like is AC. LOTS OF RUST!!!!! I got it for "free" from my parents a few years back at 58000. However, I did have to do the below to it: - Engine $550 --- engine has 225K, truck is at 70K - Radiator, coolant hoses $200 (I got a good discount) - Intake Manifold $175 - Coils / spark plugs $150 (used OE coils) - Starter $75 (got a good discount on new) - Ball Joints / Wheel Bearings / U Joints in front axle - $1100 It sat for 10 years after my dad had some serious health issues. So it rusted pretty badly from sitting in a gravel driveway. Real bad rust. I have been using it mainly for towing. The bed is way too shot to use for truck stuff. But I have towed my Jeep all over with it, towed a F250 back from Vermont. I have a "trust" range of about 200 miles or so ... because that's why my AAA membership is. For the most part, I can't imagine doing too much to my Jeep that I wouldn't be able to drag my trailer with Surge brakes home on back roads if needed. Short of a serious mechanical failure. However, we're starting to do a lot longer runs. This year we are going to Maine and down to VW, along with local stuff and trips to the usual spots in PA. Probably about 3500 miles of towing my Jeep. Definitely out of my comfort zone with this truck. Especially the 450 mile (one way) Maine trip. The truck is 20 years old. The transmission is physically broken and has been for some time. So here's some things that the truck needs: - New Bed $2800 minimum for the 8' steel superduty bed - Transmission fixed ($1000 to have someone pull and install the transmission, then whatever it costs to have the case tigged together then reinstall) ----- As part of above, I'll do a new clutch, flywheel, pressure plate, slave cylinder, throwout bearing --- $350 for a good set - Passenger door - Shock Absorbers - $150 for a good set "likes" would be getting a drivers side rocker panel and cab corner replaced. Even if I went through all of that, I would have a nice looking and very functional truck. But it is still all of 20 years old. I don't know when the fuel pump is going to quit. I don't know when the water pump might go out. What if it blows out a plug somewhere? What if the 1997 F150 engine decides to scatter somewhere on the side of the road? These questions drive me a bit nuts and anytime I go anywhere I end up worrying what will break and where it will break. I have been looking at mid size trucks. Honestly, I prefer my small fleet of utility trailers for house work. Easier to load and unload. Easy to get out of the way if needed. Getting a Ranger / Taco / Colorado with a mini bed wouldn't bother me because I could just use a trailer to move stuff around. There's no reason one of the mid size trucks rated to tow couldn't tow my Jeep on a trailer. And it would have AC! I'd get rid of my Subaru, of course, to find one that's 2 or 3 years old. There's a lot of sentimental value in the F350, so that wouldn't be going anywhere either way. I remember riding off the dealer lot with my dad when it was brand new. Just have a new bed and some of the costlier items delayed.
 

CKN

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Utah
The truck you have now needs to be replaced. You have not mentioned cost to buy another truck-so I guess you can afford it. My only suggestion is to look at half-ton trucks verses smaller ones. It opens a lot more of possibilities -as far as looking at used vehicles. Your towing experience will not be that great-towing your Jeep behind a mid-size truck. BTW-you will get a lot of replies on here by people who don't own a truck or have never even owned one-or even towed with one. It happens on every truck thread.
 
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14,198
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Central NY
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Originally Posted by CKN
The truck you have now needs to be replaced. You have not mentioned cost to buy another truck-so I guess you can afford it. My only suggestion is to look at half-ton trucks verses smaller ones. It opens a lot more of possibilities -as far as looking at used vehicles. Your towing experience will not be that great-towing your Jeep behind a mid-size truck. BTW-you will get a lot of replies on here by people who don't own a truck or have never even owned one-or even towed with one. It happens on every truck thread.
It does need to be replaced. Everytime I tell my dad that I'm towing somewhere longer distance with it, he just shakes his head and goes "you know that truck is junk right?" A 1/2 ton would be better --- tows better and gets the same or better mileage than the midsize trucks too. As far as power goes, I don't need much. I can't imagine anything being slower than the tired old Triton in the hills. I'd be fine with the NA v6 versions of the Big three or even a Titan. But it's a size issue. Since it will be replacing my primary vehicle, it would have to be a 4 door (regular doors, not suicide like F150 has). I can't fit a 4 door cab 1/2 ton in my driveway, even with a microbed. My single cab F-350 barely fits in the part of the driveway infront of the house. I could fit a crew cab / long bed truck in the garage without issue, though.
Originally Posted by OVERKILL
What's the budget?
Mid 20s - Mid 30s The biggest issue I'll have used is I want a work truck! I want vinyl interior and steel wheels.
 
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9,867
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Birmingham, AL
Buy another Super Duty that shares parts, but isn't rusty. New trucks have problems too, often just out of the applicable warranty, and they are not cheap to fix.
 
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Kansas
Originally Posted by CKN
BTW-you will get a lot of replies on here by people who don't own a truck or have never even owned one-or even towed with one. It happens on every truck thread.
Op, Have you considered a Crown Vic?
 
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Ontario, Canada
Originally Posted by FordBroncoVWJeta
Originally Posted by CKN
BTW-you will get a lot of replies on here by people who don't own a truck or have never even owned one-or even towed with one. It happens on every truck thread.
Op, Have you considered a Crown Vic?
crackmeup
 
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14,198
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Central NY
Thread starter
Originally Posted by 01rangerxl
Buy another Super Duty that shares parts, but isn't rusty. New trucks have problems too, often just out of the applicable warranty, and they are not cheap to fix.
The biggest thing is the rust with this truck. If I could find a 2wd gas v8 or v10 early Superduty with no rust, I would be able to change over the axles, transmsision/transfer case and buy a bolt in kit to convert the front to leaf springs for the front axle. Mechanically my transmission is fine, just the ears where it bolts to the transmission mount have snapped off.
Originally Posted by FordBroncoVWJeta
Originally Posted by CKN
BTW-you will get a lot of replies on here by people who don't own a truck or have never even owned one-or even towed with one. It happens on every truck thread.
Op, Have you considered a Crown Vic?
Yes, and with Michelin tires, of course!
 
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Ontario, Canada
Originally Posted by Miller88
Originally Posted by OVERKILL
What's the budget?
Mid 20s - Mid 30s The biggest issue I'll have used is I want a work truck! I want vinyl interior and steel wheels.
Maybe a fleet truck? Does your local utility sell off their used trucks? I know ours does and they are typically pretty spartan but well maintained.
 
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ME
My f150 with 2.73 gears is sketchy for towing. Lots of clutch slippage starting off. I've towed (on a dolly) a bonneville, camry, HHR. It'd be better with 3.55 gears. You, shopping used, are going to run into more turkeys like mine vs proper trucks. At least with the long wheelbase it handles okay once moving. I'd stay 3/4 ton and heavier. I have a dodge w250 plow truck and it's great to go 1 mph with the clutch up. My Ford can't go that slow. LOL Your dad's old truck honestly sounds perfect. We have stake-side F250s and F350s at work, sprung for, I'd say, 10k plus lbs. Real rough riding. But they hold together.
 
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You can get a new V-8 half ton Chevy or Dodge for about 20k that will tow a Jeep all day, every day. For some reason Fords go for a considerable premium at the moment. As a highly satisfied F-150 owner—-I wouldn't pay it. I'm generally in favor of running a truck forever. That's one of the advantages of owning a truck. It can segue from first vehicle to second car to hand me down saving you and your family big bucks along the way. Unfortunately that's not in the cards with your existing vehicle. To my mind a Super Duty is a specialty vehicle. Unless you have something like a horse trailer to haul don't get one. The capability of a half ton these days is just awesome. It's not like it was even 15 years ago,
 
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the canyons
Originally Posted by OVERKILL
Originally Posted by FordBroncoVWJeta
Originally Posted by CKN
BTW-you will get a lot of replies on here by people who don't own a truck or have never even owned one-or even towed with one. It happens on every truck thread.
Op, Have you considered a Crown Vic?
crackmeup
Maybe a 4Runner? I hear they have what are considered to be the most comfortable seats in existence...
 
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But seriously, take your dad with you, and then you'll have sentimental value of him being there when you buy the new(er) truck.
 
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Originally Posted by 02SE
But seriously, take your dad with you, and then you'll have sentimental value of him being there when you buy the new(er) truck.
That's a fantastic idea! thumbsup
 
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N.C.
Originally Posted by 02SE
Originally Posted by OVERKILL
Originally Posted by FordBroncoVWJeta
Originally Posted by CKN
BTW-you will get a lot of replies on here by people who don't own a truck or have never even owned one-or even towed with one. It happens on every truck thread.
Op, Have you considered a Crown Vic?
crackmeup
Maybe a 4Runner? I hear they have what are considered to be the most comfortable seats in existence...
Subaru...?
 
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14,198
Location
Central NY
Thread starter
Originally Posted by OVERKILL
Originally Posted by 02SE
But seriously, take your dad with you, and then you'll have sentimental value of him being there when you buy the new(er) truck.
That's a fantastic idea! thumbsup
That is a great idea!
Originally Posted by gregk24
Why did the engine go out with such low miles?
It ingested two washers. No idea where they came from. Must have been in from the factory and I just got unlucky 58000 miles later that one finally managed to get in the combustion chamber.
Originally Posted by eljefino
My f150 with 2.73 gears is sketchy for towing. Lots of clutch slippage starting off. I've towed (on a dolly) a bonneville, camry, HHR. It'd be better with 3.55 gears. You, shopping used, are going to run into more turkeys like mine vs proper trucks. At least with the long wheelbase it handles okay once moving. I'd stay 3/4 ton and heavier. I have a dodge w250 plow truck and it's great to go 1 mph with the clutch up. My Ford can't go that slow. LOL Your dad's old truck honestly sounds perfect. We have stake-side F250s and F350s at work, sprung for, I'd say, 10k plus lbs. Real rough riding. But they hold together.
This has 4.10 gears. And the ZF 5 speed has a nice granny gear. I can take off from a stoplight with a F250 on a a 3500 pound trailer and not work the clutch hard at all .
 
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14,198
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Thread starter
It still looks like that today, except the cab corner is missing on the drivers side. But the passenger side has no wheel well on the bed, the bed supports are rotted out (along with the floor) and the bottom 2'' of the passenger door is missing. Frame is scaly but good.
 
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