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 > Towing with GM 1 ton extended passenger van (Savana/Express)

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Dadoffourgirls

China, MI USA

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Posted: 07/30/19 05:34am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

LanceRKeys wrote:

Dadoffour, how does your 6.0 do compared to your previous 8.1?


The 6.0 with the 6 speed did everything as good as the 8.1 for what I needed, except it did it on 30% less fuel.


Dad of Four Girls
Wife
Employee of GM, all opinions are my own!
2017 Express Ext 3500 (Code named "BIGGER ED" by daughters)
2011 Jayco Jayflight G2 32BHDS

Dadoffourgirls

China, MI USA

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Posted: 07/30/19 05:37am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

CJM1973 wrote:

Bionic Man wrote:

Not trying to talk you out of your plan, but 145k miles really shouldn’t be a huge concern, especially if you have maintained the truck.


If my plan didn't involve upgrading trucks in 1.5 years and if my children didn't grow like weeds, I think I wouldn't even consider it. But the lack of space behind the front seats is a concern for a 14,000 mile trip over 2 months. I think the storage capacity with the rear 2 rows removed (it's a 2-3-3-3-4 config) is the biggest plus. Will be able to bring a few more things with us and keep it all out of the elements.


Just be aware that you will then find yourself hauling the Scouts, 4-H, band, drama, kids etc with this vehicle. It will make a great, one-day road trip vehicle to Grand Rapids. 5 couples can go, and you need only one designated driver.

p220sigman

Tallahassee, FL, USA

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Posted: 07/30/19 05:51am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Personally, if I were looking to get another truck in a year and half regardless, I'd put a cover/shell on the truck to solve the storage out of the elements problem and keep the existing truck provided it has been maintained well. If you check your local listings, you can probably find a good used one that is relatively inexpensive. If it is in good shape, no real reason it wouldn't make the trip just fine.

CJM1973

Trenton, MI

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Posted: 07/30/19 06:21am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Dadoffourgirls wrote:

CJM1973 wrote:

Bionic Man wrote:

Not trying to talk you out of your plan, but 145k miles really shouldn’t be a huge concern, especially if you have maintained the truck.


If my plan didn't involve upgrading trucks in 1.5 years and if my children didn't grow like weeds, I think I wouldn't even consider it. But the lack of space behind the front seats is a concern for a 14,000 mile trip over 2 months. I think the storage capacity with the rear 2 rows removed (it's a 2-3-3-3-4 config) is the biggest plus. Will be able to bring a few more things with us and keep it all out of the elements.


Just be aware that you will then find yourself hauling the Scouts, 4-H, band, drama, kids etc with this vehicle. It will make a great, one-day road trip vehicle to Grand Rapids. 5 couples can go, and you need only one designated driver.


That's what I'm afraid of....the DW and I being the designated driver all the time.

CJM1973

Trenton, MI

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Posted: 07/30/19 06:48am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

p220sigman wrote:

Personally, if I were looking to get another truck in a year and half regardless, I'd put a cover/shell on the truck to solve the storage out of the elements problem and keep the existing truck provided it has been maintained well. If you check your local listings, you can probably find a good used one that is relatively inexpensive. If it is in good shape, no real reason it wouldn't make the trip just fine.


I hear you but the shell would cost some $$ that I would not ever recover when I sell it, especially on high mileage truck. The more important reason I leaning towards a new tow vehicle is the reliability factor. Water pumps, fuel pumps, oil pumps, and starters are known to have a finite life a I don't want to spoil part of a bucket list vacation over a mechanical failure. Sure, an engine repair could present itself with a new van. But its much less likely.

Finally, as stated before, the kids will be a year old next summer. A year older is a year taller/bigger. And, with the dog, it's beginning to become a little tight in the 2nd row. The van eliminates that obstacle. This is a welcomed plus.

With the price I'd be buying the van for, even after putting on the miles and based on today's market residuals, resale would be just a few thousand dollars less than my purchase price. These vans are a niche, especially when equipped with to carry 15 passengers and be a "more than adequate" tow vehicle. I doubt I'll have any problem selling it.

CJM1973

Trenton, MI

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Posted: 07/30/19 06:52am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

As I have yet to drive any distance in a 1 ton van, how do they ride over the long haul as compared to a 3/4 ton pickup truck? I'm confident the engine and trans will be more than adequate. I'm hoping the chassis and suspension won't be abusing to our bones over 14,000 miles.

Dadoffourgirls

China, MI USA

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Posted: 07/30/19 07:09am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I put Bilstein shocks on my 2014 3500 Express in December 2018. I wish I had spent the money sooner. I traded that van in on a 2017 3500 Extended Express in March, and took 14 people to Florida. The ride was fine. However, if I was going to go to Alaska, I would probably install the Bilstein for the trip. Otherwise, the ride between a pickup and van seems the same.

GeoBoy

Bennington

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Posted: 07/30/19 07:15am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

It would be nice if you could get 4.10 gears for that van.

carringb

Corvallis, OR

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Posted: 07/30/19 08:23am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

CJM1973 wrote:

As I have yet to drive any distance in a 1 ton van, how do they ride over the long haul as compared to a 3/4 ton pickup truck?


Generally better because the weight bias be more balanced. But Bilsteins are a must on the GM vans, because the rear especially is under-damped.


Bryan

2000 Ford E450 V10 VAN! 450,000+ miles
2014 ORV really big trailer
2015 Ford Focus ST


Grit dog

Black Diamond, WA

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Posted: 07/30/19 10:31am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

CJM1973 wrote:

Dadoffourgirls wrote:

CJM1973 wrote:

Bionic Man wrote:

Not trying to talk you out of your plan, but 145k miles really shouldn’t be a huge concern, especially if you have maintained the truck.


If my plan didn't involve upgrading trucks in 1.5 years and if my children didn't grow like weeds, I think I wouldn't even consider it. But the lack of space behind the front seats is a concern for a 14,000 mile trip over 2 months. I think the storage capacity with the rear 2 rows removed (it's a 2-3-3-3-4 config) is the biggest plus. Will be able to bring a few more things with us and keep it all out of the elements.


Just be aware that you will then find yourself hauling the Scouts, 4-H, band, drama, kids etc with this vehicle. It will make a great, one-day road trip vehicle to Grand Rapids. 5 couples can go, and you need only one designated driver.


That's what I'm afraid of....the DW and I being the designated driver all the time.


That’s easily cured. Just be the first one in the group to get snot slingin drunk and whip out the keys and yell “who want to go do some donuts in the parking lot!!”
You’ll be absolved of that duty then....
(That’s what I do anyway. Works most of the time!)


"Yes Sir, Oct 10 1888, Those poor school children froze to death in their tracks. They did not even find them until Spring. Especially hard hit were the ones who had to trek uphill to school both ways, with no shoes." -Bert A.

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