Old Trucks

Discussion in 'Questions From New Drivers' started by farmerjohn64, Jul 22, 2020.

  1. sventvkg

    sventvkg Light Load Member

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    So you are saying an old paid off truck that is fixed up is going to break down more than a newer one with emissions etc and you'll lose more freight and have more downtime as a result? Thats been your experience?
     
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  3. TripleSix

    TripleSix God of Roads

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    When you asked your opening question...

    ...what thought do you think went through every owner operator's mind?

    Answer: OP doesn't know anything about trucks.

    They didn't say that to you, because contrary to popular beliefs, most drivers actually are decent people and willing to give out a helping hand. And so I answered what I could...you might want to stay away from the old iron. Even from the idea of them.

    Which is better...the Ford Mustang or the Chevy Camaro? Better at what? Performance. What kind of performance? Getting groceries? Hauling supplies from Home depot? Toting kids to band practice? Trucks don't work the same way as cars. Before you can talk about buying a truck and which is a better performer, you have to tell me what kind of freight you are planning to haul in 5 years and where. The wagon you pull will determine what you need. There's no 1 size fits all. I met a driver once in a plant in NW Saskatchewan that was running a Shaker with 2 40 gallon fuel tanks. We were 100 miles from the nearest town with a name. There was no more asphalt. He grabbed a load that he couldn't ignore the pay, and I was wondering if he had enough fuel capacity to get back to civilization.

    So, while you are learning, figure out why WE spec'd their trucks a certain way, then figure out how the owner ops who are doing what you do spec'd their trucks differently from WE. Then figure out what you are required to have to pull the trailer you want to pull. Then figure out the drivetrains. THEN worry about the looks/make and model.
     
  4. lovesthedrive

    lovesthedrive Is here to help

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    The other headache with the older iron? The average fuel mileage is around 4-5mpg. The 07 Freightliner I drove for CR England got 7.5mpg at 65mph. If you do a million miles and say the fuel is $2.50 a gallon (only for hypothesis)? That 5mpg truck will cost you 1 million in fuel alone. Tho a truck that gets 7 mpg wil cost you $714,485. Saving you enough money to buy a brand new truck and trailer at $295,515 in fuel savings on one year alone!

    But hey, its your company. You want the higher over head for a cheap truck. You go right ahead.
     
  5. AModelCat

    AModelCat Road Train Member

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    Well said, Six.

    To add to that, buy the truck that has the specs you need. Don't just go out and buy a pretty Peterbilt with the wrong specs and then live with it, or dump $10's of thousands into it with changing out major components to either gain driveability or to catch a 0.1 MPG fuel economy gain.
     
  6. Rubber duck kw

    Rubber duck kw Road Train Member

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    How much does that newer higher fuel mileage truck cost you to fix? Not to mention the fact that you CAN buy a 10,000 dollar 80s Pete with a Cummins and put it to work, not for the faint of heart or somebody who needs the creature comforts like AC or not having puddles of oil under it though.
     
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  7. WesternPlains

    WesternPlains Road Train Member

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    I drive an old International. Did drive a different one. Same company. There is always something breaking or needing fixing. Always. It's a constant weekly problem. Parts aren't that good either. New turbo didn't last two years. Boss got cheaper injectors for one. They went out on me. He's gonna get the expensive ones. That' truck is sitting. Waiting for him to spend the bucks. Probably 5 grand. .... On the road... Just replacing a six foot long air hose cost $900. Place like Montana....they can rip you on a tire for $900.
    One advantage to pre 2000 truck. No elogs!
    One problem is lousy mileage. These newer trucks are getting good mileage. That means alot.
    Newer trucks are comfortable with double bunks, apu, and all. My older truck is pretty comfortable. But have to idle for AC or Heat.

    I do think it would be interesting to get one of the older "mechanical" trucks like a Pete 379. One that has been rebuilt from the ground up. And no Elogs! Hate those things!

    Also might be best to buy a trade in from a Mega. Not too many miles. Etc. Last you a while so you can make some money. They get rid of things like super singles, mitigation system, and governor.

    Either way.... interesting thinking about it.
     
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  8. Rideandrepair

    Rideandrepair Road Train Member

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    I don’t know about that math, I come up with $166,675 at 1 mil miles. 5 mpg vs.7.5 mpg @2,50 gal.
     
  9. TripleSix

    TripleSix God of Roads

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    My last company truck was a 2008. Regens were brand new. The truck had a 450 Detroit and a 9 Speed Top 2 (basically a 10 speed where 9 and 10 shift automatically.) Beancounters took over and they cut that 450 to 350 HP and from 68mph top to 64. It lost 9th gear and so you had to go from 8th to 10. Fuel economy dropped through the floor. Truck was anemic...they tried to send me through the Rockies with a loaded container and 4 times, I got towed back to Denver. The engine blew at 90k. Brand new truck. You try to tell beancounters how to set up a truck and they will just dismiss you as a dumb truck driver.

    The first thing that owner ops would do when they bought a truck from the company is take it to the diesel doctor and turn it up. Fuel economy would jump 1.5 to 2 mpg better. Exact same truck as I drove. Their trucks were still set at 450HP and so they were better than mine, but they'd turn them up to 500HP. They would get twice better mileage, much better pull than I ever could with a 350 detune. But you cannot convince an educated idiot of a beancounter that you know better than him how to set a truck up.

    You guys that are contemplating buying your first rig, I will make it simple for you: If you are planning to run all 48, general freight, under 80k, you want 500HP, a 13 and 3.55 rears, minimum. BUT, you want a full gauge package. That's what sets an owner op spec truck apart from a company truck. You want that transmission temp gauge and axle gauges and pyrometer and fuel filter gauge. Saves you money. If you're pulling 80k up the Rockies in the middle of August, and you look at that transmission and axle gauges, and they're starting to burn, you will pull over to let them cool. The company spec'd truck will never know until KABOOM!

    Why would anyone want to be an owner operator?

    Because it takes away 90% of the stupid out of your daily conversations.
     
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  10. lovesthedrive

    lovesthedrive Is here to help

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    I stated 7mpg for the comparison. No I didnt use the 7.5 as drivers wont always get 7.5 or be like @Dave_in_AZ whom posted recently 9.3 mpg
     
  11. Accidental Trucker

    Accidental Trucker Road Train Member

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    That's my experience. Even after the inframe, radiators, AC systems, Air to Air, electrical, steering, interior lights, gauges, suspension parts, coolant hoses, etc, etc, etc, etc. Most can be caught and fixed at home, but, still, they have to be fixed. And that costs either time and lots of money, or time and money.

    The new truck? 225K miles, one sensor and one fuse, so far. Running the wheels of the thing. The savings in fuel economy are making the payment plus a little bit of the increase in insurance. Maintenance costs went down from $0.28 pm to $0.08, but I'm due for tires and some preventative stuff coming up on the aftertreatment stuff, so that'll go up
     
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