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Old 08-05-2002, 09:36 AM   #1
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Hi everyone.

I'm still in the research stage, but I most likely going to be converting a Class 8.

I'd like to hear from other people about their rigs, completed or works in progress.

Jon
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Old 08-05-2002, 01:00 PM   #2
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Jon -

I saw your post on the escapees forum with the T2000 KW link you had. Very Nice!

The reason I say your on the right track is, I recently purchased a 1995 FL 120 it has 500,000 miles very good condition for $13,000.(pic's under conversion link on main page) I would say it cost me $5,000 to update the interior and another $5,000 to get the brakes 100%, u-joints, cooling system, and a bunch of other work. I am now at that 1999 price level. I think your ahead of the game if you start where your looking.

BTW: Congratulations! You are the first Member & first to post.

Bill
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Old 08-05-2002, 01:40 PM   #3
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Bill,

Thanks for the info, especially some actual cost numbers. I really appreciate it.

I also want to say that the floor you put in your rig is really nice. I'll bet it will come in handy when one of the kids has an "uh-oh" too.

BTW, I am curious if any of the chairs you installed swivel. I've known a few truck drivers who had them but I don't know if they were airride seats or solid seats in an airride cab.

Thanks again for the info,
Jon
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Old 08-05-2002, 08:15 PM   #4
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No they do not swivel.

The pergo was definetly a kid protective measure.
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Old 09-11-2002, 08:57 AM   #5
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Jon,
I guess I'm at around the same stage as you in my search. We started about 9 months ago looking to convert to a MDT but since my wife was in the trucking business (in safety and loss prevention) we finally ended up thinking about the class 8's. There is nothing superior about the MDT's in comparison. Not a single selling point that I can come to except I could afford a new one (and not a new class 8). I have looked at the T2000's and have been able to find lots of them with autoshifts. We think that we will go with the autoshift if we can find a reasonable truck with it. Many fleet managers we have talked to think it is a better way to go. But all the old-time truck drivers will tell you to only go with a straight trans.

We also like the Volvo 610. My biggest problem is that I just don't know alot about the big trucks and being a fulltime RVer I really have no place to work on the truck (long-term work....can't play with it and get it the way I want it while living the rest of my life). The truck has to come to me "ready to go". I also have the problem of dumping my F550, but that I can probably deal with, since I don't need the money from that to immediately buy the class 8.

Good luck in your search.

Jack Mayer
F550 Centurion Conversion
36' Newmar Kountry Star
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Old 09-11-2002, 12:45 PM   #6
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Jack,

Mind if I jump in for a moment? 99% of Kenworth's cannot be converted to a single axle because they have a chassis arangement which does not allow conversion to single axle.

I have studied and resarched Class 8 trucks for
7 or 8 years, and come to the conclusion that a
610 Volvo is the most suitable Class 8 for RV
use.

If you have not seen it, I have a converted 1999 Volvo VNL 610 that's ready to go now. You
can view the webpage on the for sale section of this forum.

I also own a second 99 Volvo VNL 610 that is
in Salt Lake City. It has only 369K miles and is covered by the same warranties as the "Drop Dead Gorgeous Volvo RV Hauler" I have for sale.

Check it out, and don't hesitate to ask any questions you may have. You might also read "So
Many Trucks, So Little Time" thread on this forum.

Larry
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Old 09-12-2002, 06:49 PM   #7
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onezman is right about the Kenworths. The T2000s are pretty trucks but they have a fulcrum setup on the rear duels. You can't just pull out the front axle, slap in a carrier bearing and drive off. The Kenworth dealer I talked to in Kansas City said it would cost big bucks to re-work the whole rear eand on a T2000 for single axle use. I'm with onezman and the other who have the Volvo VNL610s. Great trucks and I'm going to own one soon.

Joe
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Old 09-18-2002, 12:50 PM   #8
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I read all the messages and it seemed that the Volvo 610 was a good choice for trucks. I have been on a site call Littlerockofarkansas , they have some sharp single axle tractors KW600, FL112 supercabs single axles.
I like the Ford AeroMax ATL series , can they be converted.
Go to Truckpaper.com there are tons of trucks. This is where I have searched.
Bottom line is I want to do this project , but I don't want to stick a ton of $$ into this truck. I want to know , what it is that you look for in a truck to make a conversion. Is it year, mileage,
Engine type ( Cat or Cummins ), body shape, price,
I am afraid to get burnt on a good looking piece of junk.
Someone lay out the road map for me. Phil from Michigan.
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Old 09-19-2002, 07:54 PM   #9
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Phil -

I am getting a Harvard education in truck selection.

I made a post on some items to consider in the motorhome section of these forums.

When I started looking for my truck, I had no clue what so ever what I should be looking for.

So, here was my initial criteria. To begin, I wanted a single axle & 48" sleeper. Beyond that I looked for new tires, straight body work, clean chassis and low price.

WRONG, WRONG, WRONG!

Motor - I never even looked into the condition of the motor, got lucky there, type, again got lucky with a Cummins M11 350 HP. Definitely check this out, the consensus so far is Cummins is a motor to look for due to it's long life and ease of service.

Transmission - I have a Fuller 10 speed which is a good manual tranny with it's overdrive. I didn't even know how to shift a non syncro trannie when I picked my truck up. I hated that truck until I got the hang of shifting. At this point it is not a big deal to me, but if I had a choice I wouldn't mind a auto shift. In 98% of the cases you are not going to be able to make a change to a auto or auto shift unless you are willing to part with $25,000 +

Wheels - If the truck you love has steel rims, run don't walk to your local dealer and get aluminum rims put on a set of Michelin XZE(A) tires. I just did this and it made a unbelievable difference in ride quality. The tires just run so smooth over a set of Bridgestone's I had on before. The rims are so much lighter than steel and just roll so much nicer over the rough stuff. Make sure if you or anyone is going to have this done, you make provisions to get longer wheel studs put on or your thicker aluminum wheels will not fit. (Just been there and done that)

In the Larry Ziegler forum there are 2 great articles, he will tell you the correct things to look for. I on the other hand will give you the items not to consider.

Bill

1995 FL FLD120, M11, custom interior.
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Old 09-19-2002, 09:50 PM   #10
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Not on topic, but both of my Volvos have been sold. I'M now in the market for another one.

Larry
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