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Old April 7th, 2012, 07:24 PM   #1
dragginwagon406
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Tow Vehicle

Comptemplating picking up a tow vehicle to tow the TJ. Less than 1500 miles per year.

Suburban and crew cab Chevy are tops on my list right now, both 2500 series.

Discuss:
Practicality
Reliability
Rustability
454 vs 8.1
Different body styles

We have one child now, possibly another in the future and the TJ fills up pretty quick when traveling to distant trail rides.
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Old April 7th, 2012, 07:33 PM   #2
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Can't beat a cummins. Good milage, pulls like a train. Love mine.
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Old April 7th, 2012, 08:31 PM   #3
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you probably don't need a 3/4 ton, sure it's nice but 1500 miles a year a 1/2 ton could probably get the job done

and i think i'd take an 8.1 or a 6.0 over a 454.
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Old April 7th, 2012, 08:36 PM   #4
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Towing? You don't need a 2500 but like Scottie said, you need a good engine. Over the past 10 years I've trailered my jeep behind a 5.3, 2 different 6.0's and a 6.2. All gassers. 5.3 sucked. The rest did well. One was a 2500, all the others were 1500's. There was no benefit to the 2500 but it certainly rode rough.

Don't waste your money on a 454.
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Old April 7th, 2012, 08:38 PM   #5
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if you're gonna suck the gas with an 8.1 stick with the truck.. Trucks with 8.1s came backed by the allison trans.. burbans kept the 4L80E
as Scotty stated a 1500 with a 5.3 and a set of bags will more than do the job.. if you wana pull a GN down the rd or step to a fullsize rig id lean towards an HD with the 6.0 and get the PCM tuned !! these trucks in stock tune are DOGS !!
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Old April 7th, 2012, 08:42 PM   #6
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Do those of you with trucks wish you had 'Burbans or vice versa?
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Old April 7th, 2012, 08:43 PM   #7
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Quote:
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Can't beat a cummins. Good milage, pulls like a train. Love mine.
I like the cummins but want to stay around 8-$10,000.
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Old April 7th, 2012, 08:45 PM   #8
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Quote:
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if you're gonna suck the gas with an 8.1 stick with the truck.. Trucks with 8.1s came backed by the allison trans.. burbans kept the 4L80E
as Scotty stated a 1500 with a 5.3 and a set of bags will more than do the job.. if you wana pull a GN down the rd or step to a fullsize rig id lean towards an HD with the 6.0 and get the PCM tuned !! these trucks in stock tune are DOGS !!
A 5.3 will not do the job very well. My 6.0 HD was FAR better than my 5.3. I've tried tuning gas engines and found the tunes don't do much for them.
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Old April 7th, 2012, 08:50 PM   #9
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Braking is ok on the half tons through the hills of KY or TN?
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Old April 7th, 2012, 09:00 PM   #10
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Electric brakes on the trailer do the work if set up properly, truck doesn't have much to do with it. Figure on the truck doing the propulsion only. I won't tow with anything but a2500hd, but I'm spoiled with a duramax truck.
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Old April 7th, 2012, 09:02 PM   #11
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Braking is ok on the half tons through the hills of KY or TN?
Hills = Diesel.
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Old April 7th, 2012, 09:07 PM   #12
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Unloaded mileage on a big Gasser blows.

Hills + half ton = suck.

You can find a decent diesel at 8-10k. If you don't mind the shitty unloaded mileage get a gas big block.

I have a crew cab and I NEVER wish it was a burban or expedition. I like having a bed. Kids have plenty of room in the back seat.
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Old April 7th, 2012, 09:11 PM   #13
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but 1500 miles a year, that means dealing with hills once a year. Diesel might be overkill, but cool.


I have a small offroader, small towmobile, tow in hilly areas. I just let it eat, Newer engines have rev limiters and my tiny V8 likes to rev. Transmission is really the only thing i question.
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Old April 8th, 2012, 06:57 AM   #14
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My 2011 6.2 averages 15+ mpg unloaded and rides great. A 2500 does not ride great. My 2007 6.0 was about the same. A heavy duty suspension does nothing for you while trailering a jeep that is set up right. An equalizer hitch is a plus. I wouldn't worry too much about brakes unless you are towing a bunch, which you are not.

For the miles you are talking about, do the math and I doubt you can justify the diesel.
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Old April 8th, 2012, 07:05 AM   #15
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So the 2500's ride poorly loaded too?
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Old April 8th, 2012, 07:13 AM   #16
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So far:
Probably don't need 2500
Half ton brakes and suspension will be OK
Engine:
Avoid 5.3 and 454
6.0 or 8.1 are OK but the 8.0 will guzzle
Go with truck to get Allison transmission with 8.1
Most seem to prefer truck over the 'Burban for hauling stuff
Weight distributing hitch is a good idea

That about sum it up?
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Old April 8th, 2012, 07:16 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dragginwagon406 View Post
So the 2500's ride poorly loaded too?
No, they ride like a truck designed to tow or haul a load. Whiterhino is just old. Jim you're also talking about the fuel mileage of trucks a good 5 years newer than his price range suggests for a crew cab.

He also mentioned hills, Kentucky, etc. I'd be worried about brakes! With good trailer brakes the halfton will be OK, but for 8-10k he's not gonna have a big block option like the newer trucks. Except fir the 2000ish 1500'sone that came with the 6.0 but he won't be getting the mileage your newer trucks got.
He's probably looking at 150k+ gassers or 200k diesels. Or something fairly old. I think best bang for the buck would be a 2500 with a 6 liter.
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Old April 8th, 2012, 07:27 AM   #18
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Lgottler on here towed his TJ many times with his parents Yukon. Both him and I were greatly impressed by it.

I've towed lots of stuff, even a 35 foot boat) with my wife's Hemi Durango. I know you are looking GM, but take a look at them. For the limited amount of towing you are doing, go with an SUV for daily use.

The 04 and up Durango has brakes bigger than my one ton dodge and rides and pulls great. Even with very heavy loads it gets 14-16 MPG. If you do consider the Durango, go Hemi. The 4.7 is starting to earn a bad rap.

As has been said, the right trailer (and brake contoller) does the work for you, and I personally think you'll be happier with an SUV. Even a crew cab runs out of room quick with kids and all their junk.

Last edited by kkodet; April 8th, 2012 at 07:35 AM.
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Old April 8th, 2012, 07:28 AM   #19
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Oh, and avoid the 454 unless you are quite wealthy. I had two, and they got 5-8 MPG towing, 10-12 around town. Plus they were dogs. Durable, but dogs.
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Old April 8th, 2012, 08:23 AM   #20
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Quote:
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Lgottler on here towed his TJ many times with his parents Yukon. Both him and I were greatly impressed by it.
How far did you guys tow the TJ with the Yukon, what kind of trailer?
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