any advice for buying my first truck

Discussion in 'Ask An Owner Operator' started by johnnytruelove, Mar 5, 2021.

  1. johnnytruelove

    johnnytruelove Bobtail Member

    Feb 18, 2021
    i've been a dispatcher for 4 years and it's time for me now to buy my own truck and have it run under the authority of the company i work for.So the owner told me he would help me to buy one in auction then rebuild it, average cost about 30-35K since he also owns a repair shop.Me personally that idea don't speak to me, instead i'm thinking of going to a dealer and buy a good one in the area of 50-60k.So any advice or input would be helpful to me,pros and cons, and also should i pay it cash or finance?thank you very much
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  3. Midnightrider909

    Midnightrider909 Road Train Member

    Oct 26, 2016
    Get one with some warranty left so if it has big issues you can get it fixed on the cheap. Have an independent shop look it over too.
  4. mnmover

    mnmover Road Train Member

    Apr 5, 2009
    Lichfield MN
    get a rigdig report sort of like a carfax for cars. Will show accidents, out of service violations on the vehicle. Little things like rear drive ratio makes a big difference. If you are planning to run California, cannot have a glider. Do not purchase a truck that has the dpf system deleted. Choose between wide based tires and dual tires for drive axles. If possible get disc brakes and a sliding 5th wheel. Compare to the specs that your boss is running and look at overall cost over many miles. Good Luck!
    johnnytruelove Thanks this.
  5. Arctic_fox

    Arctic_fox Medium Load Member

    Sep 16, 2016
    @mnmover got most of it. But if you can make sure to do a blowby, dyno, and oil test before you sign. Also useful to have a 3rd party inspect it beforehand if you can. I know i ended up rejecting 2 trucks after one had a TON of metal in the oil, and one where the 3rd party inspection found a crack in the frame that had been bondoed and painted over.

    Also make sure not to get more truck then you need I.E dont go buy the owner op model with all the bells and whistles and a $2500 payment when the fleet model is $1700 and simular in specs. You can always add bells and whistles as they are needed. You cant take away from a payment by removing them. Also make sure to get a warranty on anything you buy if at all posible. If you dont you could EASILY end up broke if the truck is a lemon.
    johnnytruelove Thanks this.
  6. Brandt

    Brandt Road Train Member

    Sep 17, 2012
    Freightliner and Detroit Diesel have different warranty levels. I would make sure it includes parts and labor. I had a used truck that had 600,000 mile part and labor warranty on the engine and emissions parts.

    It's a guessing game on new or used. I would go with new if possible just because I had aa used truck. Detroit Diesel did honor the warranty but the downtime was way to much. They basically did a engine rebuild on my truck. It took Detroit Diesel 4 days just to decide and give the ok. So even a warranty claim can take week and halfway to get truck rolling again
  7. abyliks

    abyliks Road Train Member

    May 2, 2010
    ludlow MA
    30-35k is not a rebuilder truck and trucks in the 40-60ish range would scare me the most because more then likely they are 3/4 of the way worn out and ready for major work and STILL cost ~60k.

    I paid 15k cash for my 97, put about $15k into paint and body work, seats etc And another 5k into all brakes wheel seals set of Michilin steers etc (while I kept my company job), after saving up again for running capital I ran it for a full year then did the inframe, (previous owner rolled a set of rears in about 100k before I got it) so for ~65k I have pretty much a brand new truck with no payment, no emissions, and no Elog, and with the pre eld/emissions tax on old trucks I could probably sell it for a good chunk more then I have into it.

    I do have countless hours into it though, and If that’s not your thing (it’s ok if it’s not everyone has their own way) go buy a brand new one as close to 0 miles with a warranty, you will still need a good amount of capitol saved up as you will make no money waiting for your free repairs to get done at the back of the line (cash comes first) but you will not have to deal with any of the work.

    whatever you decide avoid 2008-2016ish trucks at all cost, they are cheap for a reason, because no one had any idea what they were doing with emissions and can’t make it out of the repair shop
  8. AModelCat

    AModelCat Road Train Member

    Jul 7, 2015
    Unless its your ### in the seat it'll only ever be a moneypit.
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