DUALS, AIR BRAKES, FOR BIG BOYS TOYS, LITTLE BIG RIG STUFF

 
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 10, 2009 5:13 pm    Post subject: DUALS, AIR BRAKES, FOR BIG BOYS TOYS, LITTLE BIG RIG STUFF Reply with quote

Hello Friends,

Now most of you Owners are in the 19' to 21' range of Bushtracker vans, and Landcruisers would be towing at least say maybe 800 or more Bushtrackers. The second place would be a variety of Nissans, Land Rovers, and so on. This does not really relate to you, the majority of Bushtracker Owners with vans 21' and smaller. Unless you want to go larger, or love big Engineering and toys, you can stop reading now as this is for the next size up in big vans and boats and motors and the rest. Waaay over the limits of the normal Japanese Nissan/Landcruiser most common option.. OK?

In larger vans, or hauling big gear on the tow vehicle, we would have about 120-150 Fords, maybe 50 Chevrolet Silverados and GMCs, and maybe a dozen Dodge Cummins 4x4s. Also there are a handfull of Hino, Isuzu type mid sized Japanese trucks..

I ran a Poll, and it was 4 to 1 in favor of seeing my Air Brake R&D for really big stuff, goosenecks, and even very large Bushtracker vans like this one that should have had them as much as the Owner loaded this 27' Bushtracker up: Shocked



Well, the Silverado is back, with Air Brakes now. The truck looks the same, but is now Big Rig capable to tow 7.2 ton or 10.8 ton GCM..





In addition to lights like a little Big Rig, Laughing



It now has Air Brakes like a little Big Rig: Wink



Air Hook up point:



Air Controls in the Cab, with trailer brakes only emergency T handle, gauge, alarm light and buzzer... (Set up for emergency use like your electrics should be, within easy reach) Wink




Fluid Control Valve under the bonnet on the firewall, taps into the Master Cylinder...




Opps, it is 5:30 and they just shut down the computers and I cannot load any more pictures..., it will have to be tomorrow...

I will show you the chassis mounted compressor, and blow down tank, on a creeper tomorrow...

This opens a whole new world of towing BIG toy haulers... Or in my case Horse Haulers... In this one, it is elevated, for Bus style cargo holds down below, and is 5 ton empty with 4 horses running it up to just over 7 ton. More when I have it..





I will modify this 5 ton Rig for R&D, loaded with four horses it will be 7 ton.

I am playing with an air brake conversion kit, to be tested yet....



Bolt up to replace the standard brakes...




Stay tuned, more coming from the lone Ranger...

Wink Cool huh? Cool


Last edited by Bushtracker on Wed Aug 12, 2009 9:34 am; edited 3 times in total
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 11, 2009 2:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Friends,
I think I might be leaving some of you behind a little.....

I will digress for a moment, and go to some basics of why these extremes of Duallies and Air Brakes, OK?

Facts: From a HVRAS Officer (pronounced Havras) Heavy Vehicle Registration Assessment Scheme... HAVRAS Officer, dat is me, been one for maybe 6-7 years now?? Anyway, here is some help for you...

1) GVM of your Tow Vehicle... Gross Vehicle Mass is the most your vehicle can weigh fully loaded.. Don't overload it. Technically you need to be aware of your limitations, and I am not talking about the petty fine here. It means over your GVM and you are Technically an Illegal Motor Vehicle and you Technically could be denied Insurance in a major issue.. OK? Now this has not been the case overall, but Insurance Companies are getting tighter to survive, and in a serious injury accident if you LOOK grossly overloaded they could collect and weigh up all the wreckage. Get horses for courses OK?

2) Dually, DRW, Dual Rear Wheels option... Now you probably already know that if you want a large boat and motor and fridge and more on your tow vehicle, Toyota and Nissan sized vehicles are hopeless to start with and you would be WAAAAY over your GVM. Well, I am here to tell you that in fact even the Silverado and Ford and Dodge SRW (Single Rear Wheel) units running around with big gull wing canopy and boat on top, loaded with gear, are DEAD ILLEGAL AND LOOK THE PART... Yes, you can put air bags over the springs and level it back up. Yes probably no one will pick it or fine you, but you need to be aware of the Liabilities. You could be exceeding the load capacity of your rear tyres and that is a safety feature, and weigh it with the 300 kg ball weight on the back or more if a large van... I had a loaded up Ford about five years ago follow me to the weigh bridge, and he weighed over 5 tons without the boat on top... Just with all the junk on board he had collected. No besides unsafe on maximum load ratings on his rear tyres SRW, he was an Illegal Motor Vehicle and Technically could be denied insurance.. OK? For instance the SRW Ford and Silverado GVM is only about 4100 kg.

3) Dually conversions and Factory DRW: Now several people including myself, have overloaded our SRW, storage boxes or gull wing canopy, slide out drawers, fridge, tools, boat on top, motor, and more and have found we are waaay over our GVM. Most of these SRW Chevs and so on have a 4100 kg GVM Gross Vehicle Mass (fully loaded)... The problem with a conversion kit making it a Dually is that it only goes about half way and the GVM increase is only about 4500-4600 kg.. This may be enough, my last one converted, an older F-350 SRW 7.3 diesel 4x4 cost about $6000 for the conversion and wheels..

A Factory DRW Dually is over 5100- 5200 kg GVM, and also a lot more stable obviously. For instance my DRW has automatic diff locks, so in any real slippage off-road I am digging with 4x4 on the back axle alone. If you really want all the toys, 600 kg Canopy with solar panels, gull wings, boat on top, fridge inside, water tanks, fuel carrier, extra spare, boat motor, generator, all the toys can add up to be well over a ton with the canopy. If this is what you really want: Start off with a Factory Dual Rear Wheel 4x4, they are not that much more expensive and twice as stable and twice as safe. You have seen one of mine on the DVDs, they are awesome off-road, even better on road... OK?

4) Caravan ATM... (Aggregate Trailer Mass) This is your Caravan fully loaded. Japanese and English type tow vehicles, 3500 kg max. Ford, Silverado, GMC Chev types, Dodges, all 4500 kg towing capacity. Now you can go more with a Dually, but when the ATM runs over 4490 kg, at 4500 kg you need to go with AIR BRAKES...

So, when you first contact Bushtracker and want a really big van like the 27' listed above, know that the engineering involves the tow vehicle, and you need to be aware that you can easily put 1000 kg aboard a Bushtracker if you order a lot of water tanks and pack it up heavily. Most would go to 600-800 kg, but some break over 1000 kg. Something big like my 31' Gooseneck, with cargo bay underneath, is loaded to over 5 tons before the 2 tons of horses go on... This is why the Air Brakes, not just a safety issue, it is MANDATORY.. OK with all this?

Kind regards from your local HVRAS Officer, da lone Ranger... Wink
Please feel free to email me on your options in tow vehicles, I have played with more and owned more in real time R&D than just about anyone, and I am glad to help out..

Several have made the mistake of overloading an SRW, when they really needed to have Ordered a DRW, and I am trying to take care of you, OK?

Now, I am playing with some really big stuff.. Wink Hydraulic actuating walking beam load sharing suspension, that raises up with a hydraulic pumping systems for off-road, then lowers back down for high speed on he highway. Wink Yes, I am headed for a Maxi toy hauler, air braked, drop ramp, and suspension to be decided on but definitely Air Braked. More in the R&D section of the Owners Forum as it develops. But ain't it fun to go out Bush with all the toys and horses to? Quad bike and trailer sure comes in handy to clean stables and haul feed, saddles, and tack. This is the Rig I am trying to condense down to the Silverado size for luxury...



duh, lone Ranger lives R&D... Rolling Eyes 3 lone Rangers, one for the RDA and property, one for the Horses and NRHA Competition, and one for the road in R&D and Bushtracker.. And don't I wish I had three of me to get the job done right... Laughing Laughing Laughing I am spread a bit thin...

Laughing
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 17, 2009 9:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Friends,

This brings up a very important concept, of SRW or DRW. SRW, Single Rear Wheels, has its limitations on GVM. That is total loaded weight limits. This is about the latest on upgrading your SRW GVM, but also the advantages of going DRW in the first place, OK?
Wink
Now we don't care if you get pulled up by portable scales and get a Fine, I don't care, and you might not care. We are talking about something much more serious here. With this financial downturn, many Insurance Companies are starting to tighten up, and if you are overloaded on your GVM, I mean obviously overloaded, you are technically an Illegal Motor Vehicle and they can deny you insurance. In a major accident this could be a serious issue.

If you are going to do a seriously large chassis mounted canopy, maybe slide out drawers, fridge on board, generator, tools, chainsaw, toys, boat on top... If you are planning this, for reasons of stability and safety and legal vehicle; then you need to consider a DRW (Dually). I have had several and I can tell you they are not a disadvantage out Bush. In ten years of a DRW, I can only find advantages, super traction, super stabilty, super safety, and it is hard to overload one. I even drive mine around town and I can tell you that once you learn the secrets to parking, it is not so bad. One wheel up on the curb of the dually, if you are parking
on a busy street and worried about it... In a parking lot, you back it hanging you rear over the curb, even over the bump stop and back further, and the dually mudguards are out of the way of other vehicles doors, trust me you can do it and it is workable... Off road, I have experienced only advantages, and you can see my F-350 in our first DVD in action, you can hardly break traction with it. Here is a sample of the Dual Rear Wheel Utes I have had over the past ten years:





Now, some of you have made the mistake, of already buying an SRW. There are two options, and one of them is a conversion to DRW. It does not get you all the way to a DRW, but it sure does a good part of it. I did one myself with this SRW F-350, older 1993 model many years ago, and I was the first I know of to go throught the R&D to convert an SRW to a Dually:




It was an SRW I put a conversion to DRW on, and you can see how I extended the mudguards out just a little in Bushtracker checkerplate. And here is another exampe, another DRW Conversion, one done by one of you Bushtracker Owners:




Now if you do not like the DRW conversion, there is a new breakthrough, another option for your SRW. This is a typically overloaded SRW, chassis mounted $20,000 custom canopy, loaded, extra fuel tanks built in, the works:
Wink



Now it is a nice job of it. Beautiful canopy, boat loader, he has the works on board loaded with a whole lifestyle. But he also may be as much as a half ton overloaded with the stock GVM the vehicle came with... Typical of probably 40 others like him, and this is why my research and the topic of this Posting... Wink I am trying to take care of you, OK?

He has done the right thing and battled away to get a GVM upgrade. It took over $5000 to do, 5 ton suspension, and Engineers report, but he has upgraded his GVM to about 4900 kg. Now this requires tyres that will carry it, and I will still argue that a Dually is safer, more stable, and the correct way to do it. But for those that have built a custom SRW canopy and all, this may be the next best way to get around it.

It takes a truck building Shop, with an Engineer backing them, that knows and understands the DRW and SRW problem and is familiar with the Fords and Chevrolet trucks. His was done at:

Malaga Springs and Suspensions,
6 Oxleigh Drive, Malaga, W.A. (0Cool 9248-1130

I am not saying this is the only outfit, there will be one or two or more in every major city, you just have to find one that is familiar with these trucks and that understands in the F-250 and F-350 and the Silverado 2500 HD and 3500 HD, they have the same chassis... And the best way would be to buy in a Dually rear end that had the same gear ration complete with suspension and do it right, changing it with studs and all to really suit the DRW, or buy a DRW from new like many of you should have. I am just saying that while the SRW is a mistake for many that really want to load one up, while it is not as safe or as stable, to upgrade the GVM IS POSSIBLE... Wink

Best Regards, and in "Your Best Interests"
lone Ranger, ...... or is it road Ranger... Laughing


Last edited by Bushtracker on Thu Nov 26, 2009 11:11 am; edited 1 time in total
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 03, 2009 1:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here is another overweight F-250 that has been upgraded.

Alright, it was an overloaded F-250 with a HUGE 7' Gull Wing Canopy, and he has done the hard yards to up the GVM with a Dual Rear wheel kit... DRW..





Looks Good! (And legal, GVM over 5 ton)
New F-350 springs, and DRW Wheel kit. Now in all fairness, this is still the stop gap measure. If you envision this big of a kit, boat on top, with the lot: My advice still stands that you start with a stock DRW (Dually) in the first place.. However, if you are like these people that have fully customized and are in love with their truck, this is an option that will make it leagal. Theirs was done by a Mob in Melbourne, Rocket Sport Trucks http://www.rocketsportstrucks.com.au/ The kits are not as strong as the original studs to axle of a Factory Dually, this is a bolt on kit, and as I said it is a stop gap measure, but it will work.

On the road with the Ranger... Wink

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 09, 2009 8:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Alright,
Here is a Air Brake performance report:

The "Rig" is not finished, but here it sets and will be running loaded over 10 ton, about on the limits at 10.8, unless I can raise the GCM more. The Silverado has huge reserves in power, and is running about like a Landcruiser towing a box trailer, from the feel of my 100 Series.





On the Air Brake controls, you have a "Joy Stick" and this is more for an emergency. Mine is positioned to the left of my leg and I can feel it all the time, it is comforting:



Now obviously, in a panic, a jacknife, on ice on gravel on wet mud, you pull back on the "Joy Stick" and it will snap the trailer back behind you... I have also played with a gentle pull back, and this works VERY well. Wink It does not lock up the brakes, but you can definitely feel them coming on, maybe even a bit more than you want. But again this is a comfortable feeling of POWER BRAKING..

Air Brakes on their own, just with the Silverado, is adequate. The Air Brakes themselves are adjustable, with different cam (leverage) length adjustments, different shoe widths, and different air cans. You do not want tooo much, as that can be dangerous on its own. You do not want them locking up. It is sort of like adjusting the GAIN CONTROL on your electric brakes, only with Air Brakes the adjustment is mechanically done. In my case it is nearly perfect, and if I am on a long haul down I have the option of additional braking gently pulling back the "Joy Stick" about half way. It does not dump all the air and lock them up, it is just a bit more brakes that normal, and it gives me another option.

Annoying Factors?
A very loud air compressor firing up when you turn on the key every morning, your neighbor would hate you. It is entirely illegal, but I have run a series of two disconnects when the air brakes are not required as in NOT towing.. A circuit breaker and a wire disconnect on the low air alarm and the whole thing is dormant. This is technically ILLEGAL, but if you did it you could not forget and run, because the system would not release the air brakes on the trailer. Do not ask anyone to do this for you, it is illegal.

Another one is the Joy Stick pulled slowly, is massive braking, and there is a good one or two second delay when you let go of it before it releases the brakes. That is a bit scary of a sinking feeling, but the ability is great in an emergency with 7 tons of trailer and horses on the back.. Wink

I am now one of the 50% that is actually LEGAL out there on the road... Laughing Laughing Being a HVRAS Officer, it would be pretty hard to plead ignorance... Laughing Laughing Cool

Enough for now...... On the road with the Ranger

***********************************************************
Post Script add on, October 6 09....

First "Long Haul" on the Silverado, 10.5 ton, loaded belly tank of water, and horses and tack on board... Doesn't look too big from this perspective:



But then this perspective shows you how big a 31' gooseneck with 600mm bus style cargo bays underneath.. This is a big load !



Tack, saddles, water on board,



And horses..



This Rig is 10.5 tons, and I was getting about 20.8 ltrs per 100 kms. The engine on this long haul is probably not fully run in at 9300 kms, and it was up and down hilly country. This is a big GCM and nearly 5kms per litre. I think anyone should be happy with that.. Wink

The Air Brake performance is marvelous..!!!

************************************************************
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 12, 2009 11:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There have been a couple of cool developments with this BIG AIR COMPRESSOR...

I bought a spare... Duh, yea I know my middle name is overkill... Rolling Eyes However, traveling with horses, when the Gooseneck is 7 tons loaded, you cannot do well without the Air Brakes. Yes you Mechanics are going to tell me I can wind off the air cans and run with no brakes, but I would have to poke along at 30 kph.... Scary... And not enough air to keep the horses cool in really hot weather. Soooooo, I have determined that the all the fluid control valves and general controls, are all commercial truck grade and available anywhere. The only weak link could be the compressor itself so I bought a new one as a spare... Wink A spare, yea, overkill, but.... I will keep it in the horsefloat for that emergency day, if I don't use it, it is like money in the bank only we have inflation coming and I would probably sell it at a profit... Laughing




All chromed up, even a chrome air cleaner, American, quite the unit..!

Anyway, it occurred to me that with the big tank, and large volume air compressor, I should see how it runs air tools. So I took a 20 M hose and lopped off about 10 M and put an air brake fitting on it with a reducer to the hose, and plugged it into the air brakes high pressure fitting:



Now it has 130lbs and does not fire up until it gets down to about 100 psi. It will run even a big Shop air-drill and other tools, as well as a proper truck filling tyre gauge...



Another nutso invention from the mad Road Ranger... Laughing
Laughing Laughing A side benefit of this air brake system, a built in "Continuous Duty" air compressor....

Cool, very cool Cool Exclamation
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 26, 2009 10:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well THAT'S THAT... The pain of Real Time R&D.........

I am overweight on GVM... I have to travel with empty fuel tanks, and unload tools to keep legal. I am only marginally legal when loaded up with two horses now, and really have to empty water tanks to stay within my legal GCM. This is not good... With my Daughters Futurity Horse, my own, and two others I may have to travel next year with two tons of horses, over 11 ton GCM and I just cannot do it. I have enjoyed it but out done the capability of my little Silverado, and they do not make a bigger one. Here is the perspective of a Big Rig horsey vacation home to look at:



I have successfully mated my Mack and my Silverado and gotten an F-450... (Both my Mack and the Silverado are sold) This is the end of a five year battle, trying to get big enough to do the job yet small enough to drive to work every day. On research and investigation I have gone to an F-450 for not only the massively larger GVM, but also the GCM. The F-450 has a GVM of 6577kg and GCM (Gross Combined Mass truck and trailer) of 14,963 kg, a huge jump from the Silverado Dually at a GVM of 5171. And I have to say, this is THE nicest truck I have ever driven in all respects: To drive, capability, comfort, feel on the road, user friendly, this is the very best in Australia if not the world... It has a 100 mm wider front end on each side, that gives it a Dually capability for steering and control, tighter turning radius with bigger steering and locks. It is awesome in feel on the road with added control, a luxury cab on mid size truck gear.



By comparison the Silverado is a car, with a ute body over the top. I am absolutely STUNNED at the size of the truck gear under my new F-450 coming...



The pictures show 19.5 Big Rig style Alcoa truck alloy wheels, the best truck wheels in the world, and I thought it was just for show.. I did not realize it was NOT SHOW, but GO... They cover some absolutely massive brakes and running gear. This F-450 absolutely dwarfs both the F-350 and the Silverado 3500 HD. I did not realize, until I started to get pictures, that these are 10 stud Big Rig hubs and wheels and brakes, not 8 stud..

The F-450 pushes into the commercial truck range of BIG on all running gear and brakes, with the same luxury body over the top. I guess this is the mid-way point I have been looking for the past few year. This truck is being converted as we speak, by VDC in Melbourne..

Here is the 8 stud brake hub of an F-350 below:



Here is the brake hub, 10 stud, of the F-450 below..



Here is the rear brake, Disc, on a DANA 110 Differential, little Big Rig gear, that is why they had to go up to 19.5 Alcoa truck wheels to get over the big brakes.. It has 4 tons more towing capacity than my Silverado, and 1.4 tons more GVM.



What is interesting is that the F-450, is almost the same price as the F-350, only you get a massive difference in commercial Super Duty truck gear under the same cab.Interestingly, the F-350 Dually might become redundant, as the F-350 Single rear wheel has the same capacity GVM and GCM of the Dually in a Silverado for instance, of 5171 kg. Because of the higher GVM of the new SRW F-350, being the same GVM as Silverado Dual Rear Wheel, it is an option for you owners that need the Dually GVM but don’t want to live with the Dually width. Mind you, the Dually is still a much safer vehicle, that not only has increased stability towing and safe extra tyres, but also better control in loose or wet surfaces..

Now if you need more GVM still, the F-350 Dually is now available with a GVM of 5905 kg, some 728 kg more than the Silverado 3500 HD. I doubt many of you need to go that high, but it is there if you need it.
The Importer is now steering people towards the F-450 for almost the same money if they need a Dually for big time towing, as it is much bigger gear and capacity for nearly the same money. Mind you, there is still a place for the smaller Dually in a Silverado or F-350, for added traction and safety and control on loose or wet surfaces. You would not believe the difference in feel towing with a DRW over a SRW in any of them.

In my case, this is huge capability, and I really need it. It has a GVM of 6577 kg, a conventional trailer towing capacity of 7257 kg, Fifth Wheel capacity of 10,977 kg, and a GCM Gross Combined Mass of 14,963 kg. This is about half way between my Silverado and the Mack, a very nice cross breed with the same luxury cab on top... Laughing In all fairness, in my case for heavy long distance work, it is better to be going at about 60-70% of the vehicles capacity in the case of the F-450, than to count on 100% capacity of the Silverado.

Hopefully it will come in time to install the Air Brake Conversions and Gooseneck Hitch here at Bushtracker over the Holiday.. Hope, hope,
More to come, as it develops...

For those that want everything, gull wing canopy, boat loader, motor slide out, fridge or freezer in the back, and so on like this:



Look, I love all the toys too, even travel with horses.. If you want a set up like these above: You may not need to go as large as the F-450, but definitely consider a dually. Not only for Legals, an Insurance, and even for the safety on just single tyres on these SRWs... !!! Be safe out there...

If you want it all, boat, and the rest of all the toys, you should go a Dually like these Owners have done:



Tryin ta look afta ya... On the road with the Ranger.....


Last edited by Bushtracker on Fri Nov 16, 2012 8:01 pm; edited 8 times in total
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ponce



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PostPosted: Thu Nov 26, 2009 11:10 am    Post subject: 10 Stud? Reply with quote

Steve,
I can only count 8 studs on the 10 stud unit. Are you counting yourself and someone else as well in the count?????
Regards Ponce



Hello Ponce, ten stud, 20" Alcoa Big Rig wheels to get over brakes, 10 stud. And I changed the previous Posting for you, noting the captions better as "below: "
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ponce



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PostPosted: Thu Nov 26, 2009 11:12 am    Post subject: 10 Stud?? Reply with quote

Steve,
I read the wrong caption. Of course you are right. My mistake!!!!
Regards Ponce
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 26, 2009 7:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Looks a beast Steve, I will withdraw the sale of my F250 ..... and will wait 6 months till you change again and buy your F450 ...... Laughing Laughing Laughing

Just kidding Steve ok, but seriously do you know what the turning circle in metres is?
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 27, 2009 7:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, you would absolutely love this... Going to a whole other class of vehicle... Here to quote some independent reviews {in blue)

To quote one Truck Review: "..... makes for the tightest turning radius in its class, improving maneuverability especially when towing." They quote 51.6 feet which would be around 15.6 meters turning radius
And another Review: " ....employ a radius-arm suspension setup to locate what Ford calls a "wide-frame monobeam," a very wide solid axle with coil springs. This design not only affords massive load-carrying capacity but also 45 degrees of steering lock."And talking about performance it is now on a par with the Silverado in power: "As a result, the 6.4-liter V8 delivers 350 horsepower at 3,000 rpm and a massive 650 pound-feet of torque at 2,000 rpm. While this is an impressive improvement over the 6.0-liter V8's 325 hp and 570 lb-ft, it merely levels the playing field. Chevy's 6.6-liter Duramax diesel V8 makes 360 ponies and 650 lb-ft of torque."

It has a massisve GCM of 33,000 lbs, 14,963 kg, yet is supposed to be an acceptable ride still, I will report on this, but they chaned the design to give massive tow capacity and still a decent ride per: "progressive, multistage rear-leaf springs are 8 inches longer and have been carefully tuned to combine a reasonably comfortable ride with good load-carrying capacity.

It all adds up. The F-450 pickup, sold only with dual rear wheels, can pull up to 24,500 pounds with a gooseneck or fifth-wheel hitch, or 16,000 pounds with a conventional setup. An equivalent F-350 (a leader in towing capacity in its own class) manages 18,800 pounds and 15,000 pounds, respectively. Meanwhile, the F-450 shares the F-350's 6,000-pound payload."


I have talked to people that own them, both here in Australia and in America, and the reports are very impressive. The same Horsepower and torque as a Silverado, but with a more powerfule gear ratio at 430 instead of the Silverado 373, and a massive increase in towing capacity and GVM.

For big towing, it appears the F-450 is in a class of its own, with no peers. I have done my research before taking the plunge. Wink

Stay in touch, actually all jokes aside, you might get a shot at this one. There is a new motor coming out, easier to access, simpler, and a six speed 6R140 transmission with the highest capacities in its Class in all categories. It is supposed to take over THE WORLD in mid sized trucks, Fords own diesel engine, first in 40 years. After it has been on the road for 12 months in commercial use, if it pans out, this King Ranch will be for sale in 2011. Maybe...... Or I might just stop here and dig in for the long haul as this is the last year the F-450 will come out with this big running gear, and the luxury appointed cabs like the Harley Davidson interior, King Ranch, and so on..

Here is a 150,000 mile road test pulling a 40' Fifth Wheel pretty much non stop all over America, 49 States, 7 Provinces of Canada, and to Alaska and back, with the new F-450 towing a 40', 18,000 lb trailer. Interesting review, They report one tyre failure as the front was knocked out of alignment in a pothole, on the Alaska trans Canada road, and report no breakdowns in 240,000 kms. Shocked on youtube

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vk1ysgy_kL0

That's for me alright, love it!!
Cheers, stg
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Bushtracker
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 19, 2010 1:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As many of you might (or might not) know, I have been a HVAS Officer for Qld Transport. Called "Havras" but if means Heavy Vehicle Assessment Scheme, which allows me to measure, certify, and Register Bushtrackers here in the Office. Anyway, this exposes me a bit more than usual, to Transport laws and Regulations, and I will share a few bits now and then that can save you in a pinch or in an accident... This one relates specifically to this Topic for Air Brakes and Big Hitches.

In Theory, any modification you make to a vehicle, has to have a Queensland Transport Approved outside independent Engineer do a design or certify your design and write an Engineering Modification Certificate and affix a Modification Plate to the Cab of the vehicle. Now this is true in every State, but the style varies. In Queensland it looks like this one, done for the Air Brakes addition to my new F-450.



There is another one that will be affixed in the next day or two for my Gooseneck Hitch, and I will not tow until it is on board. Wink Now in Theory, you have to have this done for any mod, but it is not routinely enforced for little things, just big ones. In Theory you need one for even a Canopy (fixing to make sure that it does not blow off or exceeds your GVM) and Bull bars (to make sure they are air bag compatible and light ADR standards) that sort of thing... FOR SURE you need it for major suspension modifications, custom tow hitches, or something like Air Brakes that will allow you to tow outside of your normal range. After you have the Engineering Certificate, and the Mod Plate affixed, you take it to the Transport and they will upgrade any specs as needed on your Registration. In my case my GCM to almost 15 ton.

Now why do I point this out? It is not about the $$$ Fine. Who cares if you want to risk that, it is none of my business... It is not about that, it IS ABOUT INSURANCE. If you do not have an Engineering Certification and Modification plate attached, and that component fails and causes an accident, you are an ILLEGAL MOTOR VEHICLE... Again, your Insurance can wipe you out.. OK with this?

On the road with the Ranger, trying to look afta ya!

*********************************************************

Post Script: 22-1-10

Double Mod Plates now affixed: And the New Rig:

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aubs



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PostPosted: Fri Jul 29, 2011 11:28 am    Post subject: 24 volt tow vehicle Reply with quote

Good morning Steve and BT owners

My tow vehicle is a Mitsi Canter and has already been towing a Phoenix for the last several years.

It already has a solar panel supplying an additional 2 batteries mounted beneath the rear seats,.....So I am thinking of running this system to the Anderson Plug?..........your thoughts on this please?

Secondly the 7pin large round plug needs to be reduced to 12 volt, now is this needed with LED lights on the van....blinkers, brakes, clearancelights,...? My research tells me that LEDs are variable?...............?

Thirdly I will need to supply the 6mm wire to the trailer plug, I can I run this from the 12 volt side of the 24v battery system in the truck?

These three things have been driving me nuts for the last 2 weeks and with only 2 weeks to delivery I am starting to confuse myself.

Thank you all for any help in advance
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mattkurvink
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 29, 2011 1:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Aubs,

Steve is away this weekend so he will probably look to answering your query early next week.

If you would like an answer sooner than this, feel free to call Peter Thomson at the office here (P 07 5476 5833) and he would be more than happy to answer your query on the phone. He is here until about 3:30pm today (we close early on Fridays).

Cheers,

Matt
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Jeff&Narelle@Alice



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PostPosted: Fri Jul 29, 2011 3:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

G'day Aubs
A few fears back we were towing a 21' BT with a Canter. I had set up a 24v to 12v converter supplying a 12v aux battery. All 12v accessories ran off this (radios, brake controler, fridge, 12v aux lights etc). The indicator, brake and clearance lights went via 24v relays with 12v output. This setup worked fine for us.

Regards
Jeff
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aubs



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PostPosted: Fri Jul 29, 2011 3:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you for the reply Jeff,

I think with the new LEDs on the Bts it negates the need for this conversion. Reasearch is showing LEDswill operate from 9 to 36v and that being the case there should be no problems.

cheers
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spookypt



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PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 1:46 pm    Post subject: Dual wheels Reply with quote

Hi Bushtracker, I'm new to the forum but have been surfing it for some time. I'm hoping you can help me. I note in one of your comments that one fellow had used on his F250

"F-350 springs, and DRW Wheel kit. Now in all fairness, this is still the stop gap measure. If you envision this big of a kit, boat on top, with the lot: My advice still stands that you start with a stock DRW (Dually) in the first place.. However, if you are like these people that have fully customized and are in love with their truck, this is an option that will make it lagal. Theirs was done by a Mob in Melbourne, Rocket Sport Trucks http://www.rocketsportstrucks.com.au/ The kits are not as strong as the original studs to axle of a Factory Dually, this is a bolt on kit, and as I said it is a stop gap measure, but it will work."

Knowing your work background as an HVAS Officer for Qld Transport can you tell me if this is classed as legal and whether a BLUE MOD plate would be required. I understand that conversion by RocketSport Trucks used aluminium adaptors supplied by Arrowcraft in the states which means you bolt on front and rear adaptors.

All of my research on the DOT site suggest this process is illegal?

Thanks for you help in advance.

Matt 2001 F250 XLT petrol!
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 2:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well Hello Spooky

First of all WELCOME TO THE FORUM, POST NUMBER 1 !

Now on your question, yes, to a State Bureaucrat working for the State Transport Dept, yes it is out of their box... However, you see custom trucks on the road all the time.. Trucks made into Tippers, Dual Cab ute conversions out of wagons, Dual axles, tandem axles, 4x4 conversion, all sorts of things. So, it is done all the time, but here are a few rules that the proceedure varies for State to State:

1) Do NOT do a conversion until you have a Custom Truck Builders Engineer willing to write you the Mod Plate.. You do it under his approval so you get it. You do not do it and then go seeking approval or you open a can of worms that is hard to put back in...

2) Do NOT assume what is OK for one State Registration is OK for another.

3) In the case of the Dually conversion, F-350's for instance were made in SRW and DRW (Single and Dual Rear Wheel).. The adaptor is put on the 8 stud F-350 SRW and yes the adaptor has bigger studs, but that is because of the wheels and not the loading. It varies vehicle kit to vehicle kit and State to State. And NO the dually conversion does NOT give you the Factory Dually GVM as a rule, in the case of the one I did it was about half way. However, you could change out the entire rear axle, brakes and springs, a whole rear end from a wrecker and then there should be no difference.

In the case of my F-350 Conversion years ago, the people that sold me the kit were also able to write the Blue Mod Plate in Queensland. Again, this varies State to State so do your research. DO NOT buy a kit from another State without finding someone in the State of Rego to write the Mod Plate for you...

Here is a picture of a conversion done in Victoria, by whom I do not know..



Here is a picture of my own done about what 12-13 years ago, in Queensland:



Kind regards, Steven Gibbs, Director


Last edited by Bushtracker on Fri Nov 16, 2012 7:58 pm; edited 1 time in total
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spookypt



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PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 2:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow that was fast. Thanks Steve.

I've had my F truck mod plated for various other things mainly "a remove console and install middle seat conversion."

I'll speak to that engineer and see what he says.

Thanks you've been a great help and you've got a fantastic forum.

Matt
Spookypt
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spookypt



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PostPosted: Wed Nov 28, 2012 9:30 am    Post subject: Mod Plate Reply with quote

Sadly no luck in QLD getting this conversion done it seems. I spoke to my vehicle certifier and he said that QLD TRANSPORT vehcile mods state clearly that the use of adaptors/spacers etc on vehicles is not permitted and he said there was no way forward from there.

I do know another engineer (Ray Cross) who does alot of ICV approvals who as yet I haven't approached but it seems fairly clear cut that its dead in the water.

Apart from getting a 2nd opinion I'd say its not legal.

Would be keen to hear your thoughts Steve?

Matt
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 28, 2012 1:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You just need to go to a different Engineer...

No it cannot be done to full Dually specifications, but it can be done and it does raise the GVM about half way. You just have to find a Transport Certified Engineer that will do it. They all have various opinions on things, and what one will not do, another is quite happy to do.

Happens all the time. Qld Transport never knows the difference, you just have the Engineer that is willing to make the Mod plate, and you take that and the letter into Qld Transport to have the GVM upgraded on your Registration. Last time I did it for someone, they did not even charge for the change on Rego..

However, you do not even have to do it with the kits.. Find a Dually rear axle the same gear ratio from a Wrecker... Anyone will do it then. For instance, the F-350 was done in SRW and DRW. Just change out the rear axle and increase springs or use the ones with the Dually. Then you should get the whole Dual Rear Wheel GVM, with added springs in the front as well.

Mind you, it might be easier to buy a Dually close to your year, change over the toys and gear you want, and sell the SRW...

Kind regards, stg
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spookypt



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PostPosted: Wed Nov 28, 2012 2:16 pm    Post subject: Engineers Reply with quote

Steve, crazy how 1 guy says no and another could say yes??? But that's life I gues...

Do you have any suggestions on an engineer likely to approve this sort of modification in SE QLD?

I'm Gold Coast/Brisbane based.

Thanks in advance.

Matt
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 28, 2012 3:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry,
You just have to do the run around... And the reason one will do it and another not, is more familiarity with the equipment and vehicle. One who is not familiar will just take the Qld Transport standard answer no.

Also, maybe look into the F-350 rear axle replacement from a wrecker, it could be easier. My kit about 12 years ago, was over $5400 with the dually wheels. You only needed the spacers and larger studs to suit the dually wheels. You could try someone in Qld that sold the kit, the Guy that sold mine also wrote the Mod Plate. American Imports? I think his name was, down in Springfield area, I assume gone/retired by now. Doing it again, in my F-350 since it came both ways DRW and SRW, it would have been easier to change out the rear axle and carry two spares, one dually rear, one SRW front. Or again, change out the whole vehicle... Check in CarPoint, TruckSales, they are getting a lot cheaper these days..

Kind regards, stg
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spookypt



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PostPosted: Mon Jan 13, 2014 3:15 pm    Post subject: Update Reply with quote

Well, I got the ips with looking into the conversion so I sold my truck. Yep, sold in within in hour of listing the add on carsales.

But, Ive now replaced it with an 2001 F350 DRW Crew Cab with the 8 foot bed 7.3V8TD with upspec'd banks turbo and exhaust and some other nice bits. What a beast. Its done 50,000 genuine k's in 13 years!
One owner personal import converted by VDC.
It required a LR truck license to drive it, cost $2k to register and required a yearly safety inspection.

I've now had it re-engineered to come under the 4500kg GVM so not only can it be driven on a car licence my rego is nearly halved, no need for yearly inspection and I think more saleable come the time I ever want to upgrade again! And what did the engineer need to do....just affix mod plate with new GVM and the associated paperwork. No physical changes to the truck at all.

The old F truck was a toy compared to this.

Love it and can't wait to do some proper haulin down to Phillip Island, Bathurst and Winton.

Spookypt
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