PDA

View Full Version : 8.1L truck



Jumpshot
03-28-2009, 01:50 PM
I'm thinking about purchasing a Chevy Silverado 3500HD Dually, extended cab, 8' box with a gas fueled 8.1L powerplant with a 5 spd Allison Tranny. Anybody had experience with this combo. We pull at Sundance 3012RE which is about 32' long, 10.5K. I don't like the Dodge 2500HD Cummins short bed I currently pull with... stability issues with side to side... with 1800lbs in the bed. Any comments appreciated. I've got my truck up for sale and ready to purchase but would like some feedback on the gas powerplant. The diesel cost of ownership is a bit high.:rolleyes:

jpmorgan37
03-28-2009, 01:54 PM
Jumpshot;

How long do you plan on keeping the truck and how many miles a year to you plan to tow? That will have a lot to do with what you buy. Few miles and a few years, buy the gas. A lot of miles and a lot of years, buy a diesel. Fuel economy and pulling power--the diesel has it hands down.

JMHO

John

jddugan
03-28-2009, 03:17 PM
Jumpshot, I had a 2003 Silverado crew cab SRW 8.1/ Allison that I pulled a 30' TT to and from the Black Hills with. It got about 6 MPG pulling and maybe 10-12 MPG otherwise, and downshifted a lot with a load. I now have a 2007.5 Duramax/Allison and there is absolutely no comparison regarding mileage or power. If you had experience with both, you wouldn't buy the gas vehicle if you're going to tow often.

Ray LeTourneau
03-28-2009, 03:28 PM
Our previous truck was a 2500HD wkth the 8.1 and Allison. I had a few bolt on goodies like throttle body spacer, air intake and exhaust work. I was never lacking for power with our old Jayco 29 ft 5th wheel. When we moved up to the Bighorn we had to step up to the dually with the duramax. jddugan is pretty close with the mileage figures although I never got less tha 7.5 towing and never better than 12 empty. The 8.1 is thirsty. That said, it's a good combination for your 5th wheel. HAve you considered adding air bags to your Dodge? Maybe a stabilizer and new shocks would make a big difference with the stability. You'll miss the diesel for sure.

driver311
03-28-2009, 03:41 PM
that is the silliest thing i have every herd of. the dodge will last for ever. there is hardly any more stability and just 2 more tires to wear out.


edgarNoneNone

Ray LeTourneau
03-28-2009, 03:47 PM
that is the silliest thing i have every herd of. the dodge will last for ever. there is hardly any more stability and just 2 more tires to wear out.


edgarNoneNone
I have to disagree with you on the stability issue. I went from a 2500HD to a 3500 dually and was amazed at the difference. Even after just putting new shocks on the 2500. Everyone is entitled to their opinion though.;)

driver311
03-28-2009, 04:41 PM
ive pulled trailers over 200,000 miles, 2 extra wheels are just a waist of good rubber

edgarNoneNone

Niles
03-28-2009, 06:50 PM
I'm with Ray on this one, my 2500 which I loved and did not want to get rid of, wouldn't hold a candle to the 3500 dually when it comes to stability.

ct0218
03-28-2009, 07:26 PM
Diesels have much more torque at lower rpm, and that is where you tow at. They also get much better mileage than a gasser. Duallies can pull a much heavier fifth wheel because of their greater bed load capacity. A wider rear track, with 4 tires, has to be more stable because of that additional width and tire sidewall flexing is reduced because the load is distributed over twice as many sidewalls. Dually mileage will suffer compared to a SRW because of the additional weight and rolling resistance from the 2 tires. Duallies will force you walk further in a parking lot, and are harder to park in average size spaces, but they do promote walking exercise!

gsbainter
03-30-2009, 06:33 PM
I purchased a 2006 Chevy 2500HD Crew Cab, long bed with the 8.1 and Allison last year. It pulls my Sundance 2800RLS very well. I love the Allison tranny and the 8.1 never seems to lack power. It is thirsty though. I get about 8 mpg whether pulling or not. Are you buying used? The reason I ask is that I believe that 2006 was the last year that GM offered the 8.1 gas engine. I think your only choice on new is the 5.0 or the Duramax. I really wanted the diesel but couldn't swing the $7,000 premium price tag and used ones were virtually impossible to find.

Jumpshot
03-31-2009, 01:14 PM
Good feedback.... thanks. Yeah, I'll be buying used. A 2001 Chevy 3500 extd cab 8.1L gasser with Alison Tranny and 4:10's in the rear....that is a garage-kept-cupcake with 23k on it. My current Dodge 2000 2500Quad short bed Cummins Diesel has a 3:55 rear... not good for pulling our Sundance 3012RE. I've turned up the diesel with an EZ chip/larger injectors/air intake, adjusted valves...etc.... but that rear-end is killing me. also, the stability issue is a big deal with the shorty bed.

Jumpshot
03-31-2009, 01:19 PM
[QUOTE=jpmorgan37;65979]Jumpshot;

How long do you plan on keeping the truck and how many miles a year to you plan to tow? That will have a lot to do with what you buy. Few miles and a few years, buy the gas. A lot of miles and a lot of years, buy a diesel. Fuel economy and pulling power--the diesel has it hands down.

Good question... we plan on keeping the truck approx 5 yrs and we pull the 5th wheel 7-10 times a year with 3 hours of our home. Is 5 miles a gallon difference worth the increase in price for a diesel? I've also noticed with my current Dodge cummins that the 'cost of ownership' is higher with a diesel than a gas truck

Jumpshot
03-31-2009, 01:21 PM
oh yeah... forgot to mention, rebuilt the Dodge 2500 short bed tranny with TRE Diesel technology. But that 3:55 rear-end...el problemo!

Shadowchek
03-31-2009, 03:07 PM
I think I would change that rear end before I went to a gasser unless of course there are other issues with that truck.

Greg

Ray LeTourneau
03-31-2009, 08:53 PM
Jumpshot, I think if the deal is right, go for it. Yes the diesels will pull better but you have to so what is best for your situation and wallet. Our 8.1 was the same year and gearing. I was never lacking for power. I actually miss my gasser when it comes to "playing" if you know what I mean. She was pretty quick out of the hole up to about 75. I have to admit the bolt on goodies helped that a bit.:D

Jumpshot
04-01-2009, 09:30 AM
Thanks Ray! I'm still deciding. To change out the rearend in the Dodge 2500 is about 800... that is to put 4:10's in it. that 8.1L Chevy sure looks good and the deal is going to be good. The adventure continues.....:o

westxsrt10
04-03-2009, 02:26 PM
oh yeah... forgot to mention, rebuilt the Dodge 2500 short bed tranny with TRE Diesel technology. But that 3:55 rear-end...el problemo!

I'm basically a Dodge man but the problem with your Dodge is the 4 speed transmission, yes a 3.73 rear end will help some. The newer Dodges have a 6 speed auto transmission now along with tons more power! I have a friend with a 2000 Dodge like yours and it swayed like crazy even with air bags:...I looked under the bumper and saw the air lines were tee'ed together causing all the swaying problem.

htneighbors
04-04-2009, 12:21 PM
FWIW: I moved the Cyclone about 160 miles north a few days ago and got 10mpg. I usually get 10.6, so maybe I was headed uphill a bit. W/O the Cyclone attached, I average 18-19mpg and currently have over 200k miles on the Duramax. :)

John & Karen
04-04-2009, 04:40 PM
We tow our Big Country 3075RL with a 2007 Chevy Classic 2500HD Crew Cab Short bed 8.1 liter and 6 speed allison Trans. Average 8 to 10 mpg and haven't had any problems yet. We would rather pay Gas prices opposed to Diesel. Can't stand the smell or sound of Diesel engines.

John & Karen

westxsrt10
04-04-2009, 04:54 PM
We tow our Big Country 3075RL with a 2007 Chevy Classic 2500HD Crew Cab Short bed 8.1 liter and 6 speed allison Trans. Average 8 to 10 mpg and haven't had any problems yet. We would rather pay Gas prices opposed to Diesel. Can't stand the smell or sound of Diesel engines.

John & Karen

Keep that 8.1.....Chevy/GM and Dodge stopped making a gas engine that tows, thats why i bought a Ford V-10 gasser!

driver311
04-04-2009, 07:20 PM
why would ting the air bags together make it sway????????????
semis have all 4 bags ted together and there isnt any sway


driver311NoneNone

jpmorgan37
04-04-2009, 07:28 PM
I wondered the same thing. I had them tied together on my previous GMC and it didn't sway. Something was wrong causing that.

John

jpmorgan37
04-04-2009, 07:33 PM
Gas here is $2.39 and Diesel is $2.49. I'll buy the diesel for the extra 6 mpg and besides, I like the smell.:D:D:D And if you don't understand my distorted sense of humor, that was intended to be a joke.

John

westxsrt10
04-04-2009, 08:03 PM
[quote=driver311;66931]why would ting the air bags together make it sway????????????
semis have all 4 bags ted together and there isnt any sway


driver311NoneNone[/quote

It's physics.....air pressure will transfer from the side with the excess weight to the side with less weight causing sway. A check valve type device must seperate each side. Semi's are not piped with a open tee from side to side, each bag has its own air line. Try piping your air bags together with one common line and one source. Hang on and have fun!