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Buying a Top Kick

Discussion in 'Trucks' started by Willie B, Dec 30, 2017.

  1. crane operator

    crane operator Senior Member

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    .
    With the 28,000, the 3208 will be fine. If you could manage the 42,600 with your current gas engine, the 3208 will be much better (but it will still be a load).

    It's still not going to drive like a car.

    I guess it comes down to how fast do you want to go, and how much fuel do you want to burn to get there.

    a 3208 will be better than your current gas rig. A 8.3 cummins is a little more torque than the 3208. A m11 is even better. A N14 at 350hp will drive like a car with 28,000 lbs. My 500 hp detroit with just the lowboy (empty/no load) will sit you back in the seat when you get on it at 34,000lbs ( I always think "rocket ship" when I kind of get on it empty).

    You're still going to have to down shift on hills, and drive it similarly to what you do now, it will just be a little faster. I would guess hills that you pull at 15 mph now, you could pull at 25 with the 3208, but your not going to pull it at 45-50.

    My shop hill is about a 19 percent grade. Its around 3/4 of a mile long the one direction, and I would walk it in 3rd gear (9513 trans/ 6.14 rears) with my 3208, with the 50,000lb crane. I ran it with the 3208 for 6 years, and that's what both cranes had in them from the factory, and the one crane has been in this area its whole life (its a 1977).

    I think my terrain would be similar to yours, we have a lot of short steep hills, you probably have some longer hills than I do, but nothing like they see out west (8 percent grade for 11 miles etc.). The 3208 you are still going to have a line of cars behind you on a big hill, but if you want to roll with traffic, you will have to go bigger in hp in really steep hills. In my area- the dump truck guys who want to roll- all run big block 3406, 855/n14 cummins, detroit 12.7, and they run with traffic on the hills at 50,000lbs.


    I think I would take a 3208 before a 3126. Easier to work on, and less expensive when you do. No fancy equipment to run overhead, no need to have a computer for diagnostic. 12v fuel solenoid and a start signal wire is it. I had a 3208 get one of my operator's home, with 2 pistons in pieces (dropped a valve- pieces from it went to the next cyl- but it was still running- sounded terrible, but it got home).

    We have mostly narrow 2 lane (some more like 1 1/2 lane) blacktop in my working area. No shoulders. If a electronic motor has issues, you are stopped right there. I don't have a parking lot, or shoulder, or place to pull off. Generally a mechanical motor, will develop a miss, or no power etc, but its going to get you home. No sensor throwing a code and stopping you while the motor itself is fine.

    For ease of diagnostic, and getting back running, I'll take a mechanical motor over a electronic motor every time. But my situation isn't the same as everyone else's. I don't run a terrible lot of miles, I'm not more than a hour or so from my shop, and I work on most stuff myself. I'm not worried about milage/ fuel usage very much, and I bid no work and charge by the hour.
     
  2. Delmer

    Delmer Senior Member

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    Agreed. The 3126 is heui which is sensitive. The 3116 is complicated, not especially sensitive though, and is the one that needs the fancy overhead equipment, BUT no computer, only a solenoid and starter wire. (Cmark has informed me that both the 3116 and 3126 came with either the mechanical unit injectors, or the heui system, but in US trucks I see the 3116 mechanical or the 3126 heui)

    The only thing I'd have against a 3208 is the V8. If you want to stick with a six, the little cummins 5.9 is available in lots of old fords, or a brazilian ford six would be a good way to go, depending on the condition you found any of them in.
     
  3. Birken Vogt

    Birken Vogt Charter Member

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    As for the question about the automatic, yes you can downshift it just fine. If it is a steep hill you go down in whatever gear will hold you back. Downshift until it is running ~2600 RPM and holding however slow and however low of a gear that may be. It will be just like the uphill, slow, but it will get you there. If you are lucky the transmission may have a retarder on it but probably not.
     
  4. Willie B

    Willie B Senior Member

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    I bought it. Driving home I climbed over the Green Mountains. It accelerates slowly, but climbs mountains at highway speed. Downhill, holding power is much improved over the gas engine.
     
  5. Willie B

    Willie B Senior Member

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    IMG_0282.jpg
     

    Attached Files:

    Kiwi-truckwit likes this.
  6. Willie B

    Willie B Senior Member

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  7. Willie B

    Willie B Senior Member

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    31000 Miles, 600 hours on pump, If you know anybody who wants a nice fire body, or a C65 cab & chassis send them my way.
     
  8. Kiwi-truckwit

    Kiwi-truckwit Well-Known Member

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    Sweet looking truck. We got nothing like that over here, in that size class it's all Japanese cabover.
     
  9. Tags

    Tags Senior Member

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    Looks clean, rust free and best of all no CPU or emissions garbage to deal with....
     
  10. crane operator

    crane operator Senior Member

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    Looks nice willie b. Good clean body and not much for miles/hours. Glad it ran good for you. Looks like 20 inch rubber? If you have trouble finding tires, the military still uses them (11.00r20), and I've bought some as surplus, that were like brand new.

    I have a local guy to me, that is always buying used/ worn out/ wrecked trucks and parting them out/ scrapping what's left. He has bought some fire trucks in the past, and I've seen him cut up some pretty good looking bodies for scrap (there's quite a bit of aluminum in them). In my area, you might get it sold to a farmer hauling water to some cattle, but that's about the only used market for the bodies by me.

    Jack up the body and drive it out from under it? Then do the same with your flatbed?
     
  11. RZucker

    RZucker Senior Member

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    I knew of a large farm that used a fire body like that as a combination Fuel/Lube truck. They used the water tank as a fuel tank and built custom oil tanks to fit the hose bed. Very slick setup with lots of polished aluminum.
     
  12. Willie B

    Willie B Senior Member

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    I've always had a soft spot for the old American cab overs, especially the Jeep 1 ton, and the bigger IH grain trucks. As laws evolve, manufacturers respond. On a couple occasions, snub nosed trucks have had a legal cargo advantage. I'd consider a Japanese cab over, but they have zero tow rating. This truck will have an 8 ton dump body, plus tow a 9 ton trailer, mostly not simultaneously. The big displacement (10.4 litre) should handle the hills better than a 5.2 litre Japanese.
     
  13. RZucker

    RZucker Senior Member

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    I think you have a good truck there... I've always been partial to that body, one of my first service/welding trucks was a similar Topkick with the 8.2 liter turbo Detroit. I know everybody hates those more than the 3208 but it did a good job for me over the course of 5 years.
     
  14. Willie B

    Willie B Senior Member

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    10% of Vermonters make maple syrup (pronounced surup). If you pronounce it any other way, you aren't allowed to label it Vermont Maple. This time of year they fight to have a 1000 gallon poly tank on a truck. If we move fast enough to plant the tank on the old truck, it'll sell.

    I'm a welder. I lust for aluminum stock. It is very expensive. Most projects I dream up get cancelled due to the high cost of material. If worse comes to worse, one of my customers buys 6061 aluminum to melt for castings.
     
  15. Willie B

    Willie B Senior Member

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    Funny, I needed six 10.00-20 radial tires, heavy Load range G for my present truck. I called ALL the local tire dealers. Nobody would touch them. "they don't make them anymore" Everybody wanted to sell me 11.00-22.5 wheels to fit new tires. Each dealer would sell me $1200. in new wheels to put available tires on it.

    A couple years ago, I was in Maine, blew a tire on the camper. The tire dealer was inordinately helpful. Out of curiosity I asked about truck tires. He said he couldn't have them "until tomorrow". I ended up hauling new tires from maine, asking my usual dealer to mount them. They were the same brand they sell. "Why didn't you buy these from us?" I replied "I tried. You said they don't make them anymore".
     
  16. Willie B

    Willie B Senior Member

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    It turns out an Allison accepts a PTO as other truck transmissions do. Anybody know where a used PTO for an allison 643 might be found?

    Willie
     
  17. crane operator

    crane operator Senior Member

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  18. Welder Dave

    Welder Dave Senior Member

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    If you wanted to sell it see if a local MX track or dirt track is looking for a water truck.
     
  19. Queenslander

    Queenslander Senior Member

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    Nice looking truck Willie.
    Just curious about this statement.
    Our single axle Hino GH has a 16000kg or 17 ton gvm and is rated to tow the same amount.
    Only has 250hp though, so you don’t point it at too many hills with that sort of weight.
     
  20. Willie B

    Willie B Senior Member

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    I'm curious about the engine they use. Typical Oriental cab overs we see seem to have three litre diesels. A few have 5.2 litre turbo diesels. Those I've seen tow ratings for are very low!
    Keep in mind these trucks haven't been on the market many years. A low mileage used one, rurt free is still $12000.
    I'm replacing a similar weight truck with a 427 gas engine. I've not seen tow ratings for these trucks. Truck without trailer is rated at 28000 LBS I'm presuming a 9 ton trailer is legal behind this.

    In another forum (WW) a chart printed by Cummins shows required HP for 65 MPH in an 80,000 truck. It rates 250 HP Cummins as minimum. This truck when grossly overloaded will weigh half of the semi weight Cummins rates. I certainly understand it won't be a powerhouse. I only hope to be less a public nuisance than I am with my 427. VT is up hill both ways. East/West hills are as steep as 15% grade. If I can crawl over them at 20 MPH instead of 10 MPH I'm a happy man!