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Old 08-29-2013, 08:59 PM   #1
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Hello everyone, I'm new here and to the HDT community. I found your forum via google search as I look for resources for working on my HDT.

Back in 2012 I traded up to a large 38' fifth wheel and found that the ole pickup didn't like the larger truck, very poor stopping power and poor pulling power so I went looking for another truck and found that even used 1-ton pickup's outrageously priced for my taste and budget. Here is a snap of it:

Image of the ole C3500 with the new 5'er:



Unfortunately the 5'er out grew the truck by 3,000 pounds in weight as it weighs in at 12900 empty. So After a year's search, I have joined the growing club of Heavy Duty Truck owners for the specific use to pull my 5'er since the used tractor is much cheaper to purchase (I paid less than $9000) than a younger used or new pickup to pull it:



Here it is at a local company after having it singled but pre-setup for pulling the 5'er:







Its a 1993 International 9400 Eagle with the Detroit 12.7 series 60 with a eaton/fuller 10-speed. The monthly payment is only $220 verses the $500-$700 for a good used and heavier pickup. I have already taken it out on a summer trip and averaged 8.5 MPH with the 5'er at 55 MPH and 6.5 at 70MPH, the pickup gets 9.1 at 55MPH with the same trailer and cries when it hits a hill. The truck is a retired fleet maintained with 1,0660,000 miles but good mechanical condition, had a new clutch and full fluid and filter service just prior to purchase and has good rubber all the way around (80%+).

With a little modification from the truck dealer (added a porta-crapper and microwave) they changed the title from tractor to that of motor home. In doing so the plates went from $450 a year to $48 a year and no CDL or air brake endorsement required (per Michigan and FMCSA).

I have gutted the sleeper and placed benches along the side walls for the kids (teens) to sit, a temporary remedy till I customize the sleeper as a passenger compartment. The front has dual air ride seats. Runs good, but body wise it is work in progress. I plan to sand it down to near bare metal, paint it with new primer and color on my own, customize the sleeper with bigger and better windows, and interior with a motor home door in rear with passenger side retracting staircase for family with arthritis to enter and build a steel deck with skirts over the rear end and take off the large roof mounted fairing. I also plan to add a deck over the back to add weight over the rear axle as it is skiddish when bob-tailing, hard braking makes the rear axle lock up and want to pass the front. So I plan to use 1/4" steel plate that I can paint for the deck material.

Already got the supply air line set up to run light air tools and fill tires, I find it fun to drive and a learning challenge as I have had to learn how to drive an un-synchronized manual transmission. And unlike my pickup, the trailer only makes it ride smoother and doesn't even know its there...

Here is a link to a whole album of "pre-singled" images of the body I had made for a body shop friend so if anyone is interested in close ups...

http://s731.photobucket.com/user/lpd...ational%209400

Well I hope you enjoy the images and feel free to comment or ask questions!!!
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Old 08-30-2013, 04:54 PM   #2
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Welcome to the forum, you are going to be so much happier and safer going down the road than with your old truck! You managed to find financing on the tractor? Out here in the west I can not find anyone that will make a loan on a used tractor for non commercial use.

Dave
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Old 09-02-2013, 08:45 AM   #3
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Looks great. Have you seen the HDT Rally ? We've gone the last three years and have a really good time there. You should try to get there. Lots of knowledge to share. For the deck what about that rubbery stuff like bedliner? I wouldn't just paint it. Too slippery when wet also. What about small jackknife sofas on each side facing each other in the sleeper. Position them properly so when they are folded down they make one queen size bed. I looked at a truck that had such a setup and it was very cool. Hawk Engineering has it on their site but the site is kind of messed up right now. They have a banner says new web site coming soon. Keep checking for it in case they get it fixed. There's a small picture kind of showing it here: 4509GCDDGTA0Csb
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Old 09-03-2013, 04:51 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dragonslayer140 View Post
Welcome to the forum, you are going to be so much happier and safer going down the road than with your old truck! You managed to find financing on the tractor? Out here in the west I can not find anyone that will make a loan on a used tractor for non commercial use.

Dave
I went to a credit union here in Michigan who gave me a signature loan for the vehicle. They knew exactly a head of time what I was purchasing, from where and what I intended to do with it. They set me up for a signature loan (unsecured loan) since the price was low comparatively. I am not sure how far they will go you would have to contact them.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob86ZZ4 View Post
Looks great. Have you seen the HDT Rally ? We've gone the last three years and have a really good time there. You should try to get there. Lots of knowledge to share. For the deck what about that rubbery stuff like bedliner? I wouldn't just paint it. Too slippery when wet also. What about small jackknife sofas on each side facing each other in the sleeper. Position them properly so when they are folded down they make one queen size bed. I looked at a truck that had such a setup and it was very cool. Hawk Engineering has it on their site but the site is kind of messed up right now. They have a banner says new web site coming soon. Keep checking for it in case they get it fixed. There's a small picture kind of showing it here: 4509GCDDGTA0Csb
I thought of doing just that on the driver side, I plan to remove the large vertical storage shelf behind the driver seat to make room for such as couch and also replace the relatively small window in that wall with a much larger one. On the passenger side there is a similar shelf but much harder to eliminate as it holds all of the duct work for the sleeper AC/heater system. So I thought of either a small home made fixed couch or a captain's chair.

I just took off the roof mounted wind fairing so it is considerably shorter.
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Old 09-03-2013, 04:57 PM   #5
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I also joined up at the IRV2 forums and they too advised me about the HDT rally. I would love to go but will have to wait till there is one slightly closer. I love my truck but it does eat healthy so that does place some limits on my destinations to visit. I like your truck in the link
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Old 09-05-2013, 05:02 AM   #6
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Welcome to the Forum !
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