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Old 10-31-2018, 08:59 PM   #21 (permalink)
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You don't need hybrid to get a 40mpg pick up, just intelligent design. American type pickups are mostly toys. If you want to get real practicality with an open vehicle (if you have a shell on your pickup you're screaming 'I'm doing it wrong') then you get something like this:


Easy loading from all sides and a secure space for an 8' ladder and tools, and a low load floor (how you're supposed to get a compressor or welder or table saw into a 4x4 pick up I don't know).

30mpg city worst case. 40+mpg city best case. Same over all size as an F150.

America simply isn't ready.


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Old 11-01-2018, 09:33 AM   #22 (permalink)
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For the last three years and 30,000 miles, I've averaged slightly over 35 MPG. If I lived in a warmer climate, that average would about 37 to 38 MPG.

The truck has comfortable seating for 5 adults, and I use it as a truck just often enough to justify a truck. I had a car and trailer at one time, and a truck just works better for me.

The truck I really want is slightly smaller, has better aerodynamics, the engine and six speed manual from the new Colorado, and properly done start/stop. With a rig like that, I would be close to or at 40 MPG.
The vacuum gauge plus wheel covers helped increase summer 2015 mileage to 38.5 MPG, while summer 2016 mileage was 38.6 MPG without the wheel covers. Drove 33,021 miles 2016-2018 at 35.00 MPG.
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Old 11-01-2018, 09:42 AM   #23 (permalink)
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With fuel topped off at travel center, get a CAT SCALE reading (phone app available). Just you alone and ONLY whatever gear kept permanently aboard (never removed until you sell it).

This TARE weight is the trucks minimum. Compare scale reading against axle/tire/wheel limits. This is what determines towing capacity. That spread from this “empty” scale ticket and any from setting up hitch rigging, etc, is how to understand what’s going on.

It’s also how to set tire pressure. Which is according to Load. These are necessary baseline numbers.

New shocks (Bilstein or KONI only) and examination of bushings critical on older truck. Cheap to fix (use poly for anti-roll bars). Zero steering slop.

Steering & braking are what matter. Not engine power or “Payload”.

The baseline for FE is loaded & hitched for a camping trip. Full fresh water & propane. Three scale passes. First with, and then without weight distribution hitch tensioned. Then drop trailer and scale last time. All passengers aboard.

(Hitch adjustment is essentially that first and third weighings show the same Steer Axle value).

That third pass is part of how to determine “what is the proper mpg for this rig”? It’s the “A” of an ABBA test where B is with the trailer. 40% drop solo in towing is the standard at or under 60-mph. Worse than that needs examination. Same roads and 100% constant use of cruise control; as the actual mpg figures aren’t important, it’s the tightest spread from Loaded/Solo to Loaded/Hitched that matters).

Both vehicles

1). Alignment
2). Brake drag
3). Bearing preset
4). Book maintenance to date.

With the “Camping Weight” recorded , you can duplicate it at any time for testing your new tow vehicle .

MICHELIN LTX or Bridgestone DURAVIS tires only.

All new exterior LED light fixtures. Not just lamps. Headlights deserve study. See Daniel Sterns site and keep copy of headlight adjustment diagram. I dial my headlights up or down a measured number of turns based on first correction, and again when headed out of town first time. (Half tank of fuel). No WAG

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Old 11-02-2018, 12:16 AM   #24 (permalink)
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I agree with you Slowmover except payload does matter of course. I know the 2800# I posted isn't exact but it's ballpark and ironically it's 1000# more than my Cummins was. So the Cummins had a better tow rating, but was really lacking on payload. Now I had airbags in the Ram but really that doesn't change the official rating, It was under 1800# that I could carry (although I have had more than 3000# of topsoil in there for a cross town run). The tow rating was great but put 800 pounds on the tongue, 5x250 pound people inside, and bam! I'm over payload with an empty bed. (Bam was actually the Ram's nickname so I just teared up a bit there.) Now put the same 800# on the Yukon tongue, put even 7x250# adults in it, and I still have 250# of room for even more gear inside. So while the Yukon has 8000 pounds less tow rating, realistically it has more capability in other areas, mainly payload. Plus it rides day to day like a dream in comparison to a tank 2004 2500 Ram and a 6 speed with aftermarket clutch that was about a 2 legger.
What I should do is put a Cummins 4bt in it, but LS Chevy small blocks are just too plentiful and inexpensive to mess with a good thing. I can get a brand new crate motor direct from GM, complete throttle body, sensors, injectors all the way to the oil pan, dropped on my driveway for $5200 with a 360hp 380 ft-lb on junk gas net rating which is about what I was looking to spend just a correct injector job on the Cummins. Diesels are great but their stuff is crazy expensive when it goes bad.
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Old 11-02-2018, 05:45 PM   #25 (permalink)
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I wasn’t questioning your choice of vehicle.

But, first, the Cummins Ram wouldn’t be overloaded unless an axle/tire/wheel rating was exceeded. This is law. “Payload” per Ram is advertising copy. Means nothing. I’ve legally loaded these trucks to far higher numbers and in complete legality. The insurer also has no worries.

As the AAM rear drive axle is rated at 11,000-lbs, it’s the wheels and tire that are the weak link. Change those to a higher rating and beef the springs.

Agreed they don’t ride well. Later generation hydraulic cab mounts are the big change.

As you’ve wanted good mpg while towing a travel trailer (and I’ve been at it nearly fifty years) the concerns I related above are directly related to maximizing economy. As that is thru steering & braking (stability) get a start. Get the baseline numbers.

Glad you’ve found something you like.
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Old 11-03-2018, 03:10 PM   #26 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by MetroMPG View Post
However he does kind of drive like a grandma ... maybe even to the point of going TOO slowly for ideal economy (putts around in too low a gear).
With a 4.6 L engine, there's no such thing

(except when towing)

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