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Old     (rio_sanger)      Join Date: Apr 2007       01-10-2010, 3:00 PM Reply   
Being in construction for 35 years, and owning boats for 30 of them, I have always had 3/4 ton trucks,vans,and Suburbans which have served me well as dual purpose vehicles. Although, DBC's thread on 1/2 tons sparked my interest somewhat and got me to thinking maybe I should consider a 1/2 ton for my next truck. I have not had to tow our boat since '02 since we got a river place and only need to launch and retrieve about 30 feet (see profile pic)
My work hauling has really scaled down to mostly my tools, with an occasional material run as most of my subs are hauling their own materials, or I have large loads delivered.
Our sons have their own trucks now, and it's been a long time since anyone was in the back seat, except the dog.

I keep my trucks for at least 10 years, and most have had well over 200,000 miles on them before I retire them, so when I buy something new, I better like it. I've always thought of 1/2 tons as wanna be trucks, and kind of girly, but I can see set up the right way, they can look pretty good as some of the pics on DBC's thread prove.

So here's my thought. I'm coming up on 200k on my 2500 Suburban 4x4 with the 8.1 big block. I just love this thing, but practicality says that within the next year or so it may be time to say goodbye. I will not need a crew cab, a super cab will be perfect. 4x4 is a must, (don't even know why they still make 2 wheel drive trucks) as is a V-8. It will need to serve as my daily driver/work truck so comfort and drive-ability are important as I drive around 20,000-25,000k per year.

I would put a cab-high shell on it to safely store my tools and supplies. I would maybe lift just couple inches, to make it look healthier and an additional leaf on the rear is a consideration to get rid of the 1/2 ton sag.
I've never owned a Japanese vehicle, but Tundra is on my short list along with Chevy 1500, and possibly a Ford F150 although the looks on the Ford are hard to picture with a shell, and may look too boxy, but it is not out of the question.
Dodge guys no offence, but just not for me.

Comments and advice on these three trucks from owners would be appreciated, not the "my friend has a POS" etc.

Remember I DO NOT NEED TO TOW, so diesel guys need not respond ...thanks Chris
Old     (trdon)      Join Date: Sep 2007       01-10-2010, 3:32 PM Reply   
I have a Tundra, a previous model generation (03). I cant say enough good about it. I ordered it with everything I wanted and now have about 95K on it and all I have had to do is replace an O2 sensor and front brakes. Nothing mechanical, nothing major, it is sweet. It has dont everything I needed it to do. I have no experience with the new body except if you buy the first year model which it doesnt sound like you will, it had some issues but since then, all has been decent as far as I can tell.
Old     (razzman)      Join Date: Dec 2006       01-10-2010, 3:46 PM Reply   
I have an '07 GMC Sierra 1500 Crew 4x4 and it's been a great truck. Has the 5.3L in it and does the job nicely while getting decent mileage when not towing. I added an Air-Lift Systems rear bag setup for weight management and some Bilstiens all around for ride and i'm more than happy with it. I've towed over 4-5 hours one way with the bed packed with gear no probs.

Btw they still make 2x trucks because not everyone needs 4x, hell half of those that think they do don't.
Old     (rio_sanger)      Join Date: Apr 2007       01-10-2010, 5:18 PM Reply   
Yeah Razz, my comment about 4x4 was a bit tongue in cheek, but the way I look at it, even if I only absolutely need four wheel drive a dozen times a year, it is well worth the price of the upgrade.
Plus, it pretty much holds that same value upon resale or trade in.
And when I say Chevy, that includes GMC as well, to me the same truck.

Good fuel milage would be purely a bonus, not a goal. In my business, buying gas has just been a fact of life. Nothing I've ever owned has gotten much in the mpg department.
Heck, my wife drove a Grand Wagoneer from '87 to '98, and talk about lousy mileage When she got a Tahoe in '98 and it got 14 mpg, we were stoked!

(Message edited by rio_sanger on January 10, 2010)
Old     (jetskiprosx)      Join Date: Aug 2004       01-10-2010, 6:15 PM Reply   
I had originally looked at diesels and 3/4 tons trucks but this is my wife's daily drive and she only drives 4 miles each way. I just couldn't justify that kind of truck when I only tow with it 5-10% of the time and only 4 months of the year.

When I was looking at 1/2 tons I immediately ruled out the F-150 because it lacked in HP compared to all other 1/2 tons. I liked the ride of the Dodge, but wasn't so sure about it's reliability and resale (even though I planned on driving it into the ground). That left the Chevy 1500 which I liked, but I couldn't get it with the 6.0 (5.3 is weak) engine and max tow package without spending a I don't care all too much for government motors :-(

After talking with a few people I decided to check out the Tundra and I fell in love with it. I test drove it the next day and my mind was made right then and there.

Here are some pics of mine. As you can see from the license plate, it's ready for towing
Old     (rio_sanger)      Join Date: Apr 2007       01-10-2010, 6:26 PM Reply   
Patrick, that looks pretty sweet. That's an extended cab, right? not a crew cab? Looks like a good amount of room behind the front seat. I would go white, (hot desert sun) with black wheels (my trademark)

That looks like it doesn't even need to be lifted, or has it been?

So the Tundra cost less than the GM?

(Message edited by rio_sanger on January 10, 2010)
Old     (jinxton)      Join Date: Mar 2002       01-10-2010, 6:34 PM Reply   
I am starting to see a lot of the Tundra's with lifts and beefy tires on them and I think they look awesome, and this comes from a Dodge guy.
Old     (motorcitymatt)      Join Date: Feb 2007       01-10-2010, 6:36 PM Reply   
Be American... Buy American!

That said, the Chevy and Ford will get you 200k miles without hesitation.

Just my two red,white and blue cents.
Old     (rio_sanger)      Join Date: Apr 2007       01-10-2010, 6:51 PM Reply   
Matt, I would have agreed with you a few years back, but most US trucks have as much foreign crap in them as foreign trucks have US crap in them. I'm just not sold on the "buy US" as I used to be. Now if my Dad, (WWII Vet) was still alive, I don't think I could drive up in a Jap car! hahaha I've owned my fair share of German cars, but for me to even consider a rice burner (let alone a truck) is a riot!

...but here we are, welcome to 2010!
Old     (razzman)      Join Date: Dec 2006       01-10-2010, 6:55 PM Reply   
Yeah Chris i kind of figured that's what it was. Hell i got a 4x and it's got me up some real slippery ramps out of necessity a few times.

Matt, while i don't own one, the Tundra is an American made product, built by american workers in either Princeton, Indiana or San Antonio, Texas by Toyota USA so i guess it qualifies. And yeah i'm sure some of the money goes to Japan but then what doesn't? I guess if someone wants to get technical you could say the same for Dodge and GM as up to 25% of their new vehicle parts are actually made in Mexico!
Old     (supradoug)      Join Date: Dec 2001       01-10-2010, 7:25 PM Reply   
Just spend about 3K on an old tractor and use it
Old     (greg2)      Join Date: May 2002       01-10-2010, 8:50 PM Reply   
I've got an 07 GMC 1500 crew cab with the 5.3 and it's been great. Fuel mileage is hard to beat, the best I've done on a trip was 21.8 mpg not towing. I have about 43K on it and my average economy is 15.2 mpg over those miles. Keep in mind I loose a lot of fuel warming up my truck in the winter here and at least 15K of those miles are towing. It's not a diesel, but it tows my boat great.
Old     (jetskiprosx)      Join Date: Aug 2004       01-10-2010, 8:56 PM Reply   
Chris, it's a Double Cab (read extended cab). They have a really big crew cab but it only comes in a 5.5ft bed and is about 3k more new. The Double Cab has as much room as the Dodge Quad cab and lots more room then the Chevy or Ford extended cab. I am 5'8 and with the drivers seat all the way back my knees didn't touch the seat when I sat in the back. Now if I would have slouched they would have but in normal sitting position I was fine.

It isn't lifted. It's hard to see in the pic since the driveway isn't level, but the rear is noticeably higher. They look great with a leveling kit but I don't have the funds for that right now :-) The tires are 255/70/18's and I when they run out I will replace them with 275/70/18's to get a little bit beefier look.

My Tundra was more then a similarly equipped GM with the 5.3, but cheaper then one with the 6.0.
Old     (wake_upppp)      Join Date: Nov 2003       01-10-2010, 9:11 PM Reply   
One word: diesel. This is going to be a work truck right? Why not consider diesel? Too bad Toyota doesent offer one... yet. When they finally do we might be in trouble. But I personally will still be running a Cummins!

(Message edited by wake_upppp on January 10, 2010)
Old     (bigjokerinthebox66)      Join Date: Aug 2007       01-10-2010, 9:31 PM Reply   
+1 for the Tundra

^ like the license plate
Old     (johnny_defacto)      Join Date: Sep 2006       01-10-2010, 9:32 PM Reply   
I know you do not want to hear about diesel, but I agree with sparky jay...

I have an 05 ram 2500 quad cab 4x4. I picked it up with 7k miles on it for 30k in late 05.

I, like you, do not necessarily need the 3/4 ton or the diesel motor, however, I plan on keeping this truck for a total of 15 years (10 more). I know that the truck will fall apart around the motor, but the motor will easily go 300K+ miles.

I get 21 highway (at 65 mph) and 15 towing approx 6000#'s (at 55 mph max). I have 115,000 miles on it, Other than standard fluid and filter changes, I have replaced one set of tires at 80K, replaced a water pump at 90K along with some belts and hoses.

with that all said, if I had to do it over again, i would still have chosen the cummins, but second place would be a tundra... if I could get a 2010 4x4 quad cab for under $40K
Old     (mhunter)      Join Date: Mar 2008       01-10-2010, 9:37 PM Reply   
You have 35 years experience with 3/4 GM trucks.
Why are you changing now? Its a lot better to use a HD truck lightly than to over work a light duty truck. I hear Toyota builds a fine truck but I like you have had never had any bad experience with the American trucks. I will also bet you will pay a premium for a Tundra.
Old     (rio_sanger)      Join Date: Apr 2007       01-10-2010, 9:42 PM Reply   
OK Sparky, If I don't need to tow, convince me why I need a diesel? I'm all ears.
Don't get me wrong, I love diesel's, we had two Mercedes wagons years ago, and those things were awesome. But today, the price increase for a diesel vehicle is hard to justify, when it takes 10+ years to re gain the initial cost.
Old     (jimmy_z)      Join Date: Jun 2009       01-11-2010, 2:37 AM Reply   

Nobody is going to convince you about owning a diesel. Sounds like you are smarter than most.

Even if you were towing, buying a diesel for towing a wakeboat is like buying a bus to get your groceries. Yeah it will do the job extremely well....but do you really need a bus to get your groceries????

Any 1/2 ton no matter what brand will tow ANY wakeboat just fine.

Those that will argue like to be the first up the hill. Cool for those who like to race.

Personally I prefer to race with a vehicle that doesnt have something hanging on my bumper.

Its obvious you wouldnt even need a 1/2 ton for your situation. Heck... you could do it with a Jeep. But being in construction Im sure you need the bed of the truck to throw all your shiz into.

F150, Chevy 1500, or Tundra are all great choices. You cant go wrong. (i left dodge out at your request)
Old     (lifetimewarranty)      Join Date: Oct 2008       01-11-2010, 8:12 AM Reply   
+1 for Jimmy Z's answer.
Old     (bchesley)      Join Date: Apr 2001       01-11-2010, 9:05 AM Reply   
I wonder is all of those who say you dont need a diesel are the same that always post about not needing 3000lbs of ballast for a good wake?

Sometimes things are not a need, they are simply a want......
Old     (dh03r6)      Join Date: Mar 2007       01-11-2010, 9:28 AM Reply   
I tow my 22I with a 2001 frontier. I take it slow and low and am very careful, no problems yet. The best part is it fits in my garage and normal parking spaces plus mileage is not to bad.
Old     (highrock)      Join Date: Apr 2008       01-11-2010, 9:49 AM Reply   
There is no need for 3/4 ton truck to pull a wakeboat. I dont care if its a 21 ft or a 24 a 1/2 ton would do just fine. I have a Chevy 2500 and basically only use it pulling the boat. The only reason I have it is because it was a deal at the sale. After its sold ill be on to the next "deal at the sale" whether its 1/2 or 3/4 doesnt really matter in my opinion.

I guess some people really pay for their "wants"
Old     (guido)      Join Date: Jul 2002       01-11-2010, 11:25 AM Reply   
Diesel gas mileage can't be touched, but coming from a 8.1 I'm sure you're not too worried about mileage.

If I were in the market for a 1/2 ton it'd either be the Tundra or the GMC Sierra with the 6.0 motor.
Old     (talltigeguy)      Join Date: Sep 2003       01-11-2010, 12:40 PM Reply   
I think that the Tundra is a great choice.

Some have said it has more American made parts than the 'American' made cars.

I was scared of the mileage sticker that lists 13 and 16 MPG on there, but have been very happy to get 15.5 around town. But I am not real heavy on the pedal and my town has fewer stoplights than others.

Not my crewmax, but what it will look like within a week or two:

(Message edited by talltigeguy on January 11, 2010)

(Message edited by talltigeguy on January 11, 2010)
Old     (talltigeguy)      Join Date: Sep 2003       01-11-2010, 12:42 PM Reply   
This archaic method of posting pictures is nothing more than an attempt to save on website expense. Time for wakeworld to catch up.

Let me try that upload again:


(Message edited by talltigeguy on January 11, 2010)
Old     (talltigeguy)      Join Date: Sep 2003       01-11-2010, 12:45 PM Reply   
And also, if you spend over 40K, you are getting lots of options, or you are getting hosed. I got mine well under 40K, with $1500 back and 0% financing. The financing expired at the first of the year. About the only major option I skimped on was I got a cloth interior.
Old     (cwfletch)      Join Date: Dec 2009       01-11-2010, 1:58 PM Reply   
I have owned 1/2 and 3/4 Silverado's, F-150's and F-250's. My company uses current production 1/2 Silverado's so I still have seat time in that platform as well. IMO for an ALL around daily driver...and as much as I'm blue oval...the 5.3 1/2 Silverado takes it.
IMO the Tundra is very impressive, I consider it to be a crossover truck in regards to it catering to those who want 3/4 ton capabilities in a 1/2 ton package that can over look fuel economy for the trade off, also throw in Toyota quality. If I ever decide to buy spark plugs again it would be first on my list (I know I know blue oval).
Just stay away from diesels, they are horrible lol
Old     (motorcitymatt)      Join Date: Feb 2007       01-11-2010, 3:19 PM Reply   
Go to your local Ford dealer, get the "x" plan price for the F150 of your dreams. Drive the truck. Goto the toyota dealer drive the tundra, haggle the best price you can. I'll gladly get you a "x" plan (friends&family employee pricing plan) if you choose the F-series. Just send me a private message and we can get the ball rolling.
Old     (mhunter)      Join Date: Mar 2008       01-11-2010, 6:03 PM Reply   
1/2 Ton trucks are made to be more car like soft springs,smaller wheels, smaller engines and trans . You can upgrade a 1/2 ton but if you are doing any kind of towing or hauling it will be cheaper to get a 3/4 ton with all the HD equipment comes standard.
Old     (bigjokerinthebox66)      Join Date: Aug 2007       01-11-2010, 6:33 PM Reply   
How about the new No Fear trucks? That F-150 is by far the sickest one i've seen.
Old     (rio_sanger)      Join Date: Apr 2007       01-11-2010, 7:16 PM Reply   
"I was scared of the mileage sticker that lists 13 and 16 MPG" - lol coming from an 8.1, that would be a 30-60% increase for me!

talltige, that bed looks way too short for my needs, I need less back seat, and more bed. I'm hoping the extended cab has more bed?

After looking around today, (not dealers, just out on the road) the Chevy front bumpers are pretty fugly. The GMC looks a bit better though. I believe the 1/2 ton GM trucks no longer have leaf spring rear ends? does Ford or Tundra?
Even though I won't need to tow, In my work I do load it up with tools and equipment, and a soft rear end is not something I've ever cared for...
Old     (talltigeguy)      Join Date: Sep 2003       01-12-2010, 10:47 AM Reply   
'and a soft rear end is not something I've ever cared for'...hehehehe

I have not loaded up the back of mine yet, but it does have leaf springs. If mine is too soft, it seems terribly easy and inexpensive to put air bags in there to adjust the ride to more stiff, then let out the air and have the softer ride when just cruising.

The extended cab (not crewmax) has a 6 foot bed instead of 5.5 feet, IIRC. It can be ordered in a long bed, but those are not very popular. I have seen a few around.
Old    wakeridinrob            01-12-2010, 11:12 AM Reply   
I am very biased but this is a good source

Watch the videos on the bottom.
Old     (jetskiprosx)      Join Date: Aug 2004       01-12-2010, 12:53 PM Reply   
The bed is actually 6.5 on the Double Cab
Old     (jason_b)      Join Date: Feb 2008       01-12-2010, 2:43 PM Reply   
"If mine is too soft, it seems terribly easy and inexpensive to put air bags in there to adjust the ride to more stiff, then let out the air and have the softer ride when just cruising."

That is exactly what I did for my 2002 Tundra. I have 200k miles and the ORIGINAL shocks in the back. It still rides well, looks great, and performs perfectly fine. I've had no major problems (knock on wood) and I am super stoked to get my next Tundra sometime in the near future. NO other brand rides ANYWHERE near as nice as the Tundra rides, if it wil be your daily driver the Tundra is a no brainer.
Old     (chargeit)      Join Date: Jan 2010       01-20-2010, 2:01 PM Reply   
Tundra or GMC would be my two recommendations. Tundra had nice interior but lacked a full size bed.
The GMC was more appealing than Chevy.

Check out A.R.E. when you are looking at toppers.
I felt they had great lines and well made.
The remote locking rear glass wired into the doors is icing on the topper!

(Message edited by chargeit on January 20, 2010)
Old     (jetskiprosx)      Join Date: Aug 2004       01-20-2010, 6:19 PM Reply   
The Tundra (depending on cab configuration) comes in 8, 6.5, and 5.5ft beds.
Old     (rio_sanger)      Join Date: Apr 2007       01-20-2010, 6:53 PM Reply   
Brian, I do like the looks of that "topper" (we call them shells out here) A 6.5 bed is plenty for me now, I've had my life full of 8 ft beds!

I don't need a full back seat, but do like the idea of the small rear seat for the dog, and just room to throw something.
I'm starting to lean back towards a 3/4 ton again, ... old habits are hard to break I guess.
Although, it sounds like the Tundra is right in between 1/2 and 3/4, with leaf rears which I prefer.

I guess when I'm ready, I'll just have to go drive them both and decide. Thanks for all the comments, Wakeworld is a great community!

(Message edited by rio_sanger on January 20, 2010)
Old     (motorcitymatt)      Join Date: Feb 2007       01-20-2010, 7:43 PM Reply   
The F150 depending on the the chassis configuration has a payload capacity between 1870lbs. and 3030lbs.

Here's a link to payload specs.

Don't forget to ask the sales rep for the "X-plan" pricing. If he asks tell em you "have a friend at Ford" I hardly use all ten of my xplans in a year. You can't beat the price unless you have a family member who can get ya "A-plan" pricing. Glad to help keep your hard earned green-backs in the U.S.of A!
Old     (rio_sanger)      Join Date: Apr 2007       01-20-2010, 9:14 PM Reply   
Matt, does Ford still make a 150 super cab? I know they have them in 250's but can't remember seeing an extended cab 150 in years. Seems they are all crew cabs, maybe I'm just not looking hard enough.
Does the 150 have rear leaf springs?
Old     (slipknot)      Join Date: Aug 2001       01-21-2010, 11:13 AM Reply   
You dont need a diesel to pull 5000 lbs, TUNDRA all the way. 381 HP. and 17 highway mpg. The trucks are great!
Old     (bac)      Join Date: Feb 2008       01-21-2010, 11:27 AM Reply   
Chris, there is very much still an F150 super cab in production. I used to work for a Ford dealer until late 08. They are just harder to find around the lots here in town, since the crew cabs are what sells, so thats what they stock. And yes, the F150's still have rear leafs. To my knowledge, the Dodge trucks are the only ones running coil springs in the rears. (Those new dodge 1/2 tons are absolutely horrible for towing when you compare them to an equally equipped Ford) The new '10 F150's have improved, stronger rear leafs for better durability too

In fact one of my buddies just bought a new super cab middle of last year. If you are just gonna use it for storage or little ones, it will work great. If you plan on hauling around four grown adults, you'll probably hear nothing but complaints from the two squished in the back
Old     (talltigeguy)      Join Date: Sep 2003       01-21-2010, 1:23 PM Reply   
I was talking about my Tundra mileage a few steps back. I am still getting over 16 around town, but I coast a lot and don't accellerate hard.

I recently went on a 600 mile trip to Salt Lake City. Plenty of hills. Going 80 MPH most of the way, I got 16.2 MPG. Still haven't towed with it. When I was in the more congested area and only going 70 MPH, the mileage increased to about 18 MPG.
Old     (jetskiprosx)      Join Date: Aug 2004       01-21-2010, 2:11 PM Reply   
Is that hand calculated? I don't get near that...again I only have 1k miles on mine and it's still breaking in.
Old     (motorcitymatt)      Join Date: Feb 2007       01-21-2010, 3:03 PM Reply   

Txsurf is correct you can still get a super cab. The rear leafs for 2010 are six inches longer for a better ride.

Being in the construction bizz you might be interested in Ford's exclusive tool management system. Pretty much you stick the supplied radio frequency tags on your important tools. Select tool inventory on the touch screen and the truck will tell you if you have all your tools in the truck. You can program it for specific jobs, days of the week etc. The system was designed in partnership with Dewalt. There is also a retractable Master lock cable system in the bed to lock all the expensive stuff together. My favorite is the tailgate step and handle. Makes getting in and out of the bed very easy.

Happy Truck Hunting!


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