New or used big truck? One more question from the Alaskan Fisherman!

by Dave Harman
(Alaska, Georgia)

Hey guys i really appreciated your response on my last question. My next one is Is it realistic to spend 40,000 on a used truck and actually have it be in decent shape? Or is a pipe dream?

Other question is in my business we do rebuilds(pistons,rings,gaskets,etc..) in hours not miles. How many miles do you go in between rebuilds?

What will a rebuild cost? I am sure this is a lot and you get tired of all us morons asking you guys questions. But we sure do appreciate it.

Give me an email I would be interested in chatting for a few minutes with you guys.

Capt. Dave Harman

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Aug 12, 2016
I always had Freightliner with Detroit engines
by: Hervy

It is realistic to spend $40,000 and get a good used truck. I spent less than that twice on a good used truck.

Rebuilds used to be common around 600,000. A lot of companies will get rid of their trucks once they hit 500,000. But they could go another 500,000, it's hard to judge without knowing how well the truck was taken care of (and luck of the draw).

I have gotten almost a 500,000 plus miles on a rebuilt engine. So it really depends on how the truck has been taken care of. Remember a lot of large companies has the trucks in the hands of non experienced drivers for a lot of those miles. So as a owner op you will be more proactive and attentive to the truck.

To overhaul a series 60 12.7 I was told would be about $15,000 but that was years ago. You might want to call Freightliner and ask them. (I had Detroit engines in both of my trucks). Plus they have newer engines now like the DD15 if you want a 500 horsepower engine.

Jun 23, 2009
Capt. Dave just tossed his fishin' pole.
by: Jimmy

Hey Capt., you're welcome to ask questions as much as you want. Just understand that we are truckers or ex-truckers and are giving friendly advice only based on our experience around trucks. For tax info and the legal questions, of course, you need to consult the professional paper shufflers.

$40 grand will get you a decent truck that has plenty of life left in it. Today's trucks will go a million miles before overhauling, including the transmission IF properly cared for. One of the big wear items on an engine is idling. If the odometer shows 500,000 miles and it was idled a lot, it would actually have 800,000 engine miles on it.

In a perfect world, you would want a 1 owner truck that hauled only light weight loads and was not idled at night and maintained regularly. You can get a 4 year old truck with 500,000 miles for $40 grand or under. Just figure about 120,000 miles per year for solo drivers and double that for teams. And also, trucks are introduced in April/May for the following year, so 2010 models are out now. A 2 year old truck with 500,000 miles was a team truck. A 2 year old truck with 220,000 miles was a solo truck.

To do an 'inframe' rebuild will cost you $15-20,000, depending on the manufacturer. As you ask questions, you will get a lot of opinions about engines. Cummins, Detroit, Caterpillar, International, Volvo, Mack are all manufacturers. However, Cat is going to stop making highway engines this year. Jimmy

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