Medium Duty, or Full size semi

Discussion in 'Experienced Truckers' Advice' started by pressure_welder, Nov 3, 2018.

  1. Dino soar

    Dino soar Road Train Member

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    I think that a tandem tractor is a good idea for what you want to do. It may seem like Overkill but at some point you may want to add more equipment on to the truck and a Class 8 truck will last you so long without you pulling a lot of weight.

    Really if you're going on to construction sites you should have a truck with Hendrickson suspension. That really is the very best off-road suspension. Unless you are going to buy a new truck and spec it that way, it's probably about impossible for you to find a road tractor with a sleeper that has a Hendrickson suspension unless it's like a truck from the 70's or 80's. If you've never driven a Hendrickson suspension, they tend to beat you up. If you can find something with air ride that has full locking rears that would be the next best alternative.

    It's possible that you can find some other type of Tandem truck, like a dump truck or a water truck or something like that and add a sleeper to it. That would probably have nice heavy axles and maybe a double frame so that when you go off of the road you're better equipped for it, although if you're only hauling 10000 pounds or so it may not make that big of a difference. Wider flotation tires on the front will help Offroad.

    But at the very least you need an air ride with full locking Rears.
     
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  3. Farmerbob1

    Farmerbob1 Road Train Member

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    Why not just a medium duty flatbed tow truck, and haul a small RV trailer behind it?

    That way, you need not do any custom work. At least some flatbad tow trucks have chain and strap takedowns for securely hauling stuff beyond vehicles. They also tend to have winches or mounts for them.
     
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  4. not4hire

    not4hire Road Train Member

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    It really depends on what kind of work you're doing and where. If you are working on any major site, like the mines around Fort McMurray, or anywhere a hot-work permit is required, you're not going to be able to camp out on-site. Same thing for a lot of pipelines, etc.
     
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  5. Farmerbob1

    Farmerbob1 Road Train Member

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    Another option might be an Army Surplus 5-ton truck with a hard shelter on it, and one if the heavy short trailers they haul. You dont get much more off-road capable than that. Sleep in the shelter, and build an enclosed restroom on the front of the trailer.
     
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  6. pressure_welder

    pressure_welder Bobtail Member

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    all good points, however were trying to get into a situation were we don't have to rely on pulling living quarters for a couple reasons, first being the amount of gravel would destroy a camper and camper frames are just complete junk when it comes to frame quality. Also if I am pulling a fifth wheel camper behind me that dosent give me the ability to pull our gooseneck trailer with possible prefabricated items on the way to a job sorta thing. Done this a few times before for a couple out of town jobs and have had to make a second trip for the gooseneck, while it works its horribly inefficient. Also looked at pulling the dump box off of couple heavier duty day cab semis and putting a sleeper on it, but by the time you do that cost wise you may as well have just purchased a truck with a sleeper. Certainly still considering a straight frame M112 with sleeper, however it seems like all fingers still point back to a full size semi wth flat top sleeper.
     
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  7. GreenPete359

    GreenPete359 Road Train Member

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    I think a single screw with a 48” bunk is all he needs. Pretty simple. He donmt need big power or tandem drives. Plus being 2 axles and under 26K he avoids ifta.

    I would look for a 13 litre engine 400-450hp. Man you’ll have it made in the shade.

    Now if you want to be cool. Go find yourself and old Pete 359 or a Kenworth W9 with a 48” sleeper. And strip her down and build her right. As a fabricator you could go freaking wild on one of them. Your buget would be your only limit. Of course your only spending $10-15k US for the truck in the 1st place so that helps.
     
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  8. Rubber duck kw

    Rubber duck kw Road Train Member

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    Thats be the way to go in my opinion, make yourself something neat that shows what you're able to do while being functional.
     
  9. AModelCat

    AModelCat Road Train Member

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    If I was crazy, I'd take my W900A down to NorMar Industries in Penticton and get a service body dropped on it once I've put it all back together.
     
  10. pressure_welder

    pressure_welder Bobtail Member

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    Excellent I love all these opinions I severely appreciate your fast replies!. Yes I would be fabricating the deck on my own of course. It will have a headache rack/tool box combo roughly 4' deep angled at the top to give it some effect, flush with top of the cab and driver side and passenger side will have roughly two foot deep tool box cabinets which will house my tools, welding cable reels, bottles, etc etc. Then it is my thinking that I would be able to transform that middle section of that tool box with the remainder foot print of 6 feet wide, 4 feet deep, and roughly 6ish feet high? into the shower room with rv toilet. Plumb in a RV water pump, propane hot water tank. Make a stainless shower with intergrated sink so as to save room. put in an RV sky light, and LED lighting.
    It is also my plan to make the deck skirted to look somewhat like a those wreckers on Jamie davis's show. But yes all good opinions, looking for a lower HP tractor with a 13 speed. Whats your guys opinion on trucks with 5-600,000KM and the amount of KM I plan to put on, would a tractor with that kind of mileage still have a lot of useful life left in it especially if not towing? and we would most certainly want to go with the wider tires up front, and a higher clearance tractor
     
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  11. AModelCat

    AModelCat Road Train Member

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    Honestly knowing the terrain and conditions up here in northern Alberta and how the trucks normally operate I'd try and find a good older truck without emissions crap on it because you will be running that truck all day long. My '14 F550 runs 12 hours a day in winter and might drive 250km on a busy day. I work in remote areas and sometimes there is no one around for miles so basically its my shelter. I don't care how tough somebody claims to be, -35 ambient temperature plus high winds is enough to freeze anybody up pretty quick.
     
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