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Old     (wakeboarderdown)      Join Date: Jul 2006       07-17-2007, 9:26 PM Reply   
Thought I would share these pics I took from over the weekend. This was our first trip with our new boat and suburban and I was very worried about making it up the hill to our cabin. The hill is very steep and I've always pulled up light boats, not the current sanger I own now. The suburban I have has plenty of power with a 454, has 4-wheel drive and the 35" tires got plenty of traction but it still has the stock gears which suck on making some serious torque. So as I'm driving to the cabin I switch from 2hi to 4hi and ease onto the driveway. As soon as the hill gets really steep and all the weight is on the burb it just sits there holding about 2700rpm and I'm going nowhere. Mind you it's also about 97*F outside and the truck coolant/tranny fluid is getting very hot. I haven't freaked out yet but I put it in 4low and hope for the best and I went right up the hill! I was so relieved to be at the top. You can see in the pics the hill but it doesn't really show how steep it is. Backing down wasn't that big of an issue because I basically held the throttle slightly as I eased down the hill that way I wouldn't kill the brakes on the truck. Anybody else have any close calls towing? Upload
Old     (liveoz)      Join Date: May 2002       07-17-2007, 9:38 PM Reply   
Yep. My Bronco did that going up the hill to San Vicente. Had to back all the way down (very Sketchy) and made it the second time by getting a running start. I think this could be caused by a bad torque converter
Old     (jayc)      Join Date: Sep 2002       07-17-2007, 10:57 PM Reply   
I have to tow up a steeper hill than that with my 22ft boat and use a 1964 2.25L landrover. It makes it no problem. Just drop into low rang and idle up it.
Old     (wakeboardlasvegas)      Join Date: Mar 2007       07-18-2007, 12:08 AM Reply   
In all honesty, everyone thinks these boats weigh alot but in reality they dont. ALOT of times it is people that are TOO informed on possible problems or issues and they just get too worried.
Old     (mkperceptions)      Join Date: Jan 2007       07-18-2007, 1:01 AM Reply   
4-lo all the way up and take your time you will have no worries
Old     (laptom)      Join Date: Apr 2002       07-18-2007, 4:59 AM Reply   
Always use 4 low in these circumstances. Why even try in 4 hi or 2hi??
Old     (wakesetter101)      Join Date: Oct 2005       07-18-2007, 5:10 AM Reply   
That is a good looking Suburban.
Old     (wakeboarderdown)      Join Date: Jul 2006       07-18-2007, 6:26 AM Reply   
Come on nobody else has any stories?

Thanks Big E! :-)
Old     (kirk)      Join Date: May 2003       07-18-2007, 6:39 AM Reply   
One band camp...
Old     (mkperceptions)      Join Date: Jan 2007       07-18-2007, 6:45 AM Reply   
last time at the delta I smoked my rear tires on my 2wd 4cyl tacoma pulling my 4 winns out hahahaha, but that is normal LOL Better the tires than clutch but most of the time I can get it down without all the ruckus.
Old     (magic)      Join Date: Mar 2002       07-18-2007, 8:16 AM Reply   
I had a 'burban with the 454 in it too. All ways used 4lo going up step drives like that.

You so need to re-gear that thing with those tires. What RPM are you running at highway speed, like 1500?
Old     (ottog1979)      Join Date: Apr 2007       07-18-2007, 9:24 AM Reply   
OK, I'll chime in. Two weeks ago I made the 5 hour trip from San Diego to Lake Havasu. It was a HOT weekend and we joked about a trip into purgatory & back. Usually my 4WD Dodge Durango pulls the Sanger, no problem. However, the temp went well above 100 hitting 125 on the way back Sunday. During almost every up-hill grade over a mile or so, I had to closely monitor the temp gage and it often bumped right up near the max. We often had to turn the AC off and even once, on a long grade, had to turn on the heat to help it out. At one stop, we checked out the radiator fluid and everything was OK as it should be.

In the end, I guess that over 110 or so I just gotta baby the tow rig a bit.

The water was awesome and the beers went down easy , though!

Old     (johnsvt)      Join Date: Dec 2006       07-18-2007, 1:52 PM Reply   
Towed a hill the other day 40mph flat to the floor for 2.5-3 miles. Needless to say went back home a different way...because as my daddy used to say...he used to walk to school uphill both ways.
Old     (wakeboarderdown)      Join Date: Jul 2006       07-18-2007, 2:20 PM Reply   
Sean: When i tow leave it in 3rd gear and at about 65mph i'm going 2500rpm. When I'm not towing in and I leave it in OD I'm running about 1700-1900 rpm at 65-70mph. I only put about 4k miles on the truck a year and gears cost about 1k installed. So I think i'm going to wait on gears for awhile
Old     (bounty_hunter)      Join Date: Apr 2006       07-18-2007, 2:31 PM Reply   
Get a diesel, that way you could have made it up in 2 wheel drive!
Old     (266crownlinebr)      Join Date: Apr 2007       07-18-2007, 8:53 PM Reply   
I second that. I used to have the same setup you have with the lifted 99 sub. I had to buy a diesel when I couldn't stop my new 7000 pound boat. New diesel uses the tranny to help stop and plenty of power. I live in AZ, 125 is not that bad. It's a dry heat
Old     (wakeboarderdown)      Join Date: Jul 2006       07-18-2007, 9:03 PM Reply   
Cole don't listen to him :-) He just likes to spend my money!
Old     (auto)      Join Date: Aug 2002       07-19-2007, 8:54 AM Reply   
Diesel, leave it in 2wd
Old     (lukeduke95)      Join Date: May 2002       07-19-2007, 10:00 AM Reply   
Yeah right, my diesel isn't going up that hill either. Too much damn torque. Lights the tires in a heart beat.

Funny story about that. Yesterday, were at the lake, no of my usualls can come, so it is me and a guy that has come a couple times. Never driven the boat or the truck, so it is a toss up. I am like, okay the truck has brakes, you drive it out, I'll drive the boat on the trailer. Tell him when pulling out, go out quickly so it auto-straightens the boat on the trailer. If the tires spin let off then start going again. He starts to pull out and proceeds to have a drift contest up the launch ramp. Didn't even know the tires were spinning. "Your motor is too loud!" I replied, hmmmm, 2mph and 3000 rpm didn't tip you off?
Old     (sam8)      Join Date: Dec 2004       07-19-2007, 2:08 PM Reply   
2700 RPM and not moving is cooking your Torque converter and the rest of the "consumables" in your trans.(Clutches,steels,seals) I'd get the trans serviced after that, but that's just me.
I don't know if there is a kit available for your rig, don't know the trans or front end, but if there is a kit out for your application you can convert your front axle to manual hubs, you would be able to simply drop the transfer case into LOW and run 2WD up the driveway. Lots easier on parts. I ordered my f-350 with manual hubs, and back the truck/camper/boat combo (16,000lbs) up the driveway in "2LOW" all the time, you'd be amazed how much cooler the ATF stays, than in 2HIGH, even for that short distance. Speaking of cooler, with the 35's and towing, get the biggest trans cooler you can stuff behind the grill on that SuperSub. The factory deal isn't up to the task.(And, FWIW, every factory Trans temp gauge I have ever seen is absolutely worthless, the worst being the Ford SuperDuties from 99-2003.)
Antother advantage to manual hubs is you can lock them in without moving. I've seen lots of folks stuck on our mountain roads and steep boat ramps, madder than a wet hen when their 4WD won't lock in cause the Rig is stuck, and you have to roll the front wheels a few turns to get the hubs locked in... but thats just one opinion.

Nothing however beats my wife's former boss, who, about 15 years ago, came sliding into her work one time in his Front wheel drive car, madder than hell 'cause the car wouldn't go, "even with the chains on". There was about 4 inches of loose "Sierra Cement" snow on the road, and I had dropped her off that day, keeping her Trans Am in the garage.
I looked down out of the cab of the then F-250, and said, "ahh, Jerry, you have the chains on the back, ahh, that car is front wheel drive"
He looked at me like I was nuts.
Then he went into the office, called Ford, and found out I was right.
He called a tow truck to change them around.
Like I say, you can always tell a flatlander.
But, you can't tell 'em much.LOL

(Message edited by sam8 on July 19, 2007)
Old     (sam8)      Join Date: Dec 2004       07-19-2007, 2:19 PM Reply   
After looking at your profile pic, looks like you do have manual hubs. Just drop it into low range and you should be good.
FYI,those big-block Subs are really bringing the $ in the nice shape like yours is in. When they quit offering the big block and didn't offer the D-Max, it lost GM some customers. like your boat, too. I've got a 98 DLX
Old     (laraujo)      Join Date: Apr 2007       07-19-2007, 2:46 PM Reply   
I don't know but I think that hill to San Vincente may be as bad if not worse! I'll take a pic next time I'm there so you can judge for yourself.
Old     (guido)      Join Date: Jul 2002       07-19-2007, 3:15 PM Reply   
Army Dad.... My neighbor has one of those with a big block that he can't give away right now. I was kinda suprised as they're great tow rigs. I guess fuel prices are just a bit too high right now.

Ben D.... I can't believe nobody else caught the fact that you put it in drive and eased down the hill backward. Wow are you going to be buying a tranny soon doing that. Use the brakes, that's what they're there for. You wont even get them warm on that short of a driveway, but you could burn up a tranny in short order rolling backward with it in drive. That's using the tranny as a brake instead. NOT GOOD.
Old     (rio_sanger)      Join Date: Apr 2007       07-19-2007, 4:23 PM Reply   
Army Dad, When did they stop offering the big block? I've got a 2001 8.1 with 150,000 mi. on it, guess I'll be keeping it a while... or until they offer the deisel in the sub (still waiting)
Old     (sam8)      Join Date: Dec 2004       07-19-2007, 6:44 PM Reply   
Chris, I think it was 03. Since you're here in The Peoples Republic of California, even if it wears out, you can freshen it. The people with the newer ones are stuck with the small blocks. For them since the big block engine isn't a factory option, ya can't legally put one in a newer rig.
My last new truck is in the yard, a '97 ford F-350 with the 7.3 diesel. I don't see myself ever signing up for a new one again. I am 48, and thinking older is better.
Just when I get to where I understand and can work on carburetors, they go and change the game.
I think I'll just live in the past, I'm quite comfortable here...
Old     (rio_sanger)      Join Date: Apr 2007       07-19-2007, 7:52 PM Reply   
Army,I'm right with ya, older is better! why Ford ever got rid of the 7.3 is beyond me. BTW your lake is our absolute favorite, we've had our houseboat in that very cove on your profile, and we've had our boat on over 30 lakes in Cali
Old     (nbeihl)      Join Date: Mar 2004       07-20-2007, 1:55 AM Reply   
7.3 Diesel... I could pull 2 boats at the same time to the top of Mt Everest!
Old     (wakeboarderdown)      Join Date: Jul 2006       07-20-2007, 11:55 AM Reply   
Army Dad: Thanks for all the tips. My burb has the biggest factory tranny cooler that came from GM that year. I don't have a temp gauge but I want to install one. I don't have manual hubs but when I put it in 4-low the truck didn't have to move to engage as I just went right up the hill. As far as backing down the hill in 4-low it's like the boat is not even back there. Plus the brakes on those year suburbans are terrible and i know that if i just would have used the brakes I would have just gone right down the hill without stopping. I luckily just had the transmission flushed and installed a new filter and fluid before this trip so I know i didn't hurt the tranny. I've been working on cars/trucks for a long time and I know when to look for any issues. Here is a pic of my 500hp turbo mustang that is my other toy besides my boat.

BTW: I love bullards bar myself, but I've only been there once. Gotta get back!!



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