Heavy Half? anybody hauling a camper with one?
Posted 19 March 2012 - 10:46 PM
I've been watching the market and considering the range of options for a reasonably fuel-efficient daily driver, but one that could (legally) haul a lightweight camper like a FWC Grandby or Hawk on occasion. The one that comes to mind is Ford's newer Ecoboost F-150 with the Heavy Duty payload package. You can get it with either a 6.5' or 8' box and it has about 1000 lbs more payload than the standard half tons (about 2300lbs total). I've talked to some owners that say the fuel efficiency is only slightly worse than the standard F150s. I know that GM made a number of heavy half trucks in the past as well, but the engines were not as efficient as these newer trucks.
So, I've been patiently reading the WtW forums in the hopes that somebody has bought one of these trucks, and can report back on how suitable they'd be for hauling a lightweight pop-up like the FWC brand... Anybody?
Posted 19 March 2012 - 11:17 PM
Now, just roaming around in a stock Land Cruiser (not stock for long though... bawahahha [evil laugh])
Posted 19 March 2012 - 11:45 PM
Posted 20 March 2012 - 01:08 AM
Ticketed? Or just a warning?
Posted 20 March 2012 - 01:52 AM
The truck has excellent get up and go, and you can hear the turbo sneeze on gear changes. The truck will drink fuel when your foot is in it. Some message boards I have read indicate the mileage claims by Ford are more optimistic than normal.
2007 Mazda 4x4 with 2006 FWC Eagle shell
Victoria, British Columbia
Posted 20 March 2012 - 02:40 AM
My buddy has one, babying it on the highway gets 23+, regular driving with some moderate acceleration but not going nuts lands about 19. If you get on top of it all day long it'll be right there with a gas engine doing the same. The major perk on that engine is a FLAT torque curve which is huge for our uses, however that may require to turbos to be spooling which if that occurs then it'll cost you mileage. Basically that engine can tow major loads however when fully loaded it gets the same mileage as a loaded down big V8 engine. However when unloaded it gets substantially better. This has been shown by towing studies done on it with larger trailers. However none of that really factors into our usage which is moderate payload with increased air resistance so I'd say the jury is still out there. There were a couple posts on her by someone with an ecoboost but I haven't seen anything recently/long term on it.
2007 Dodge 2500 quad cab 4x4 5.7L Hemi auto and slowly progressing build.
FYI: I've got a bunch of extra 14ga wire in red and black. Its a thick jacket 41strand wire (likely MTW wire) verse typical 19strand automotive wire. It has good flexibility but factor in the thick jacket. I'll ship out 100' coils for $18 (I can go 50' of ea for that too) if anyone is in need of wire.
Posted 20 March 2012 - 03:24 PM
Posted 20 March 2012 - 04:55 PM
I understand that most any truck can be modified to increase it's safe carrying capacity, but an important factor for me is 'legal' carrying capacity. I'm not sure what the legal payload is on the 3/4 ton dodge cummins is, but I inquired about a couple and they were rated less than the HD 1/2 ton I've been eyeing up. Am I mistaken about this? I guess the additional weight of the diesel motor cuts into a truck's hauling capacity? I agree that they are more efficient than the gas motor when hauling or towing heavy weight, but I have been leaning towards the gasser because
1) The heaviest I'll ever tow is my 2500lb boat, and potentially a 1500lb camper.
2) the cost of diesel lately has been higher than gas prices
3) my wife complains heartily about the smell of diesel!
To add to this, 80% + of my driving is daily back and forth to work, unloaded, and weekends towing the boat. I've been managing fine with a Toyota Tacoma for the last 8 years, but would like something with similar fuel economy but better hauling capacity, if there is such a beast!
Posted 22 March 2012 - 04:33 PM
Be sure you get a very accurate weight of the camper you intend to use with all the options in it. The 2007 extended bed Grandby I bought was listed at 795 lbs with standard equipment. My Grandby had most of the options, except no hot water system, and no house battery. After I got it home, I weighed it on certified CAT scales at a truck stop and the dry weight, and with no corner jacks, was 1300lbs. Add in food, gear, 20 gals fresh water, beer, and wine, a small tool box, etc., and I had a load of about 1900 lbs. If you got a Hawk camper it should weigh less. Last year I bought a low mileage 1998.5 Dodge 2500 24v CTD. Gosh, what an improvement! Better power, better fuel mileage, "E" rated tires, better brakes, and I'm well under the max GVWR. It's just much more comfortable driving the truck with a loaded Grandby on board compared to the 1/2 ton truck. That's especially true when it's Sherri's turn to drive. And I get about 17.5 to 18.5 mpg with the loaded camper.
That's just my experience. I recommend a 3/4 ton truck, especially if you get a Grandby. It will give you the ability to pull a trailer without over loading the truck, you can carry more gear, add more weighty options to the camper, and you never know, you might want to get a heavier camper or bigger boat sometime in the future.
1977 Chevy long bed heavy half, 2wd, 350 ci, TH350 trans, Supersprings
2007 FWC Grandby