Originally Posted by ItalGerBrit
Not sure how I would identify the front heavy coachs as those specs are not typically listed and I would not know good from bad nor the appropriate questions to ask.
Is your 13spd manual totally manual or do you use the clutch at start up and then it is auto? I would not mind cranking a shifter as all my cars are manuals and I prefer manuals if given a choice. When I say I know almost nothing about the big trucks it is true. Whole new world to me but one I must learn because there is no turning back now.
Keep the comments coming. I am learning very quickly.
I'd just keep the front axle stuff in mind. We had 11R x 24.5 tires on the front of our truck when we bought it. They're a 7K tire but they were pretty squatty and the steering was really tough when stopped. I'd just consider what front tires are there and maybe take it across a scale if you can. Our local truck stop let me do ours for free with a verbal weight. They're probably not all like this so don't let me scare you. Also consider where the fuel tanks are and what the effects are when they're full. I true 18K set-up has big stuff, big steering rods, U-bolts, hubs, 9K wheels and sometimes dual steering (box on one side with a ram on the other side).
Yes, we have a manual and really only use the clutch to get going. It's a full manual though so we're shifting gears w/o the clutch after that or double clutching. It's fun and easy to drive once you figure it out and I'm still learning. Our's is an Eaton Road Ranger 13-speed and it's super versatile when rolling down the road.
Double frames is another item. I'm not convinced they all need double frames but some have them and some don't. The frames are nested one inside of another if they have it. Most of the coach builders stack some pretty big boxed frames between the coach box and the truck frame so I'm not really sure it necessary but having a double frame is not really a bad thing.