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Diesel engines, which is better: Ford, Dodge, Chevy



  • But they didn't offer a real 4 door cab when I bought my Ford. I didn't want a Chevy because they are IFS and do not offer manual hubs. I have no personal experience with this but the general concensus on Dodge is that they fall apart around the great Cummins engine So I got my Ford and will just hope my transmission doesn't fall out of my otherwise sturdy truck. Like I said in my last post, it sure would be nice to pick and choose what you want from each manufacturer as they all have their weak and strong points.
  • catamcatam Posts: 331
    Many posts ago on this thread I pointed out that the engines from all 3 are rock solid. The rest of the truck howeverhas problems to some degree for all 3. Auto trannies just don't last long in heavy duty applications. All 3 of these trucks have pointed this out thru experience. So get a manual tranny if you want it to last, the remainder of the problem gremlins affecting these trucks are not all that significant.
    Right now I think Ford has the best package, in a year or 2 I think GM will surpass them. IMHO
  • I have a new 02 Ram Quad Cab that is made in Mexico and so far it is the best truck that I have owned. There is not a rattle or vibration one more than I can say for the 00 Chevy I had. The workmanship is second to none on my Ram. If you have been around unions at all you know that the only thing they are worried about is getting something for nothing and I was in a union once. The American Unions better wake up!! We are the ones demanding a better product going out of the country is the only way to make it happen. I more than anybody wish it was not true.
  • You just ruffled a lot of feathers with that slander, mine in particular. I know this is off topic but you brought it up so... First off, my 2002 Ford F350 union made truck is top notch in every way. It was made in Kentucky by UAW union employees who I am sure do not appreciate being included in your little rant. I would like to say that I am proud to buy a product made by union workers who are happy to go to work each day and do a good job to make a good living for themselves and their families. You should be ashamed of youself for taking pleasure in the fact that the Mexicans who built your truck for cheap did a good job not because they wanted to but because if they don't work as hard as they can for next to nothing there are 10,000 others out in the cold who will because they have nothing at all. A union is only as good as its members so if yours didn't live up to expectations look at yourself before you start pointing fingers. Did you go to every meeting and vote on issues(even once)? People who only have their own self interests in mind have no business in a union. Only people who will put themselves in jeopardy to benifit others truly understand the benefit and necessity of a union workplace.
    Back on topic, I agree with Catam. All three engines are phenominal. I did buy a Ford for the reasons he stated, although I am not sure where he is going with the GM thought. Would you elaborate on that Cat?
  • I don't know much about unions, never was part of one myself. But I do see how they work around my job (we're split union/non-union). And they are the laziest and gutless bunch of creeps I've ever met. They can't work out problems or think without the union holding their hands. HOWEVER, I've been told this is a very poorly run union and real unions don't operate like this. When a union works together it works good and everyone is happy. But if nobody wants to get along then it's misery.

    American made trucks. Is there such a thing as 100% American made anymore. I don't agree with sending all the work to Mexico and taking jobs away from Americans. But what are we going to do about it??
    All American auto companies have plants scattered all over North America, Canada included. Are you going to start complaining about the Cannuks too?? It makes more corporate sense. They can make more for less.
    It sucks but it's the truth!!
  • I agree with everything you said. Unfortunately there is not much around anymore that is 100% U.S. I used to fantasize about opening a business that exclusively sold 100% U.S. goods but found it overwhelming to locate enough pure product.
    A company that has both union and non union employees is called an open shop. This situation is usually temporary. The atmosphere is polarized with passionate members of each group and most of the agenda is political on both fronts. This is a bad situation for the company the union and all the employees. Eventually the minority group will or at least should bow out. Most Unions will not allow an open shop for this reason. It is an all or nothing proposition because it is so detramental to have opposing philosiphies work in the same place.
    I don't mean to get up on a soap box here. I am a union worker and always will be yet I have absolute respect for people who are non union. Some places need organized representation and some do not. The one thing I will not tolerate is ignorant people and their anti union sentiment grouping all union workers into a made up image of laziness and corruption.
  • catamcatam Posts: 331
    See post number 11 on this thread for my explanation of my opinion about why GM is likley to improve, and Ford is entering a problem period.
    As for the union discussion, Unions were a great thing once upon a time. We can all thank them for a 40 hour workweek instead of whatever your employer felt was appropriate.
    Many union's still are good, and provide a valuable sevrice to both employees and companies.
    I believe where unions started getting in trouble is in more recent times work conditions have improved for all, so union's have increasingly focused their energy on representing the needs of a few disgruntled employees rather than advocating for the greater good of all employees. The union where I work, (I am not a member, but have attended some meetings), seems more worried about trying to fight for the job of one deadbeat employee with an illigitimate grief, than helping the rest of the hard working honest employees.
    When union's fight for people who need to be "fired" due to tragically bad performance, they due a diservice to themselves, the employees and the company.
    At any rate don't want to offend anyone, as I said I am sure their are many good union organizations out there. The vast majority of Americans are hard working and honest, it is sad that a few bad apples paint such a bad picture at times.
  • I would like to inform you that I became Sec/Tres. of the Local so let me tell you I did my part, but I got tired of all our resources going to defend employees that even you would not have hired if they were the only you could find. While the hard working responsible ones get nothing, but a hard time for doing what they get paid for. Nobody is lumping everyone together just stating the facts. You picked the wrong person to slam because I'm as blue collar as it gets. I would like to say one more thing there is not a single employee willing to risk their good paying job for a dead beat no matter what they may say in front of the union. They are telling management every time they get the chance to fire that dead beat, but when the meetings come they are defending them because if they keep the dead beat everyone else looks good even if you didn't get your required stuff done for the day. This has nothing to do with American's just Union politics that will have to change sooner or later.
  • I just reread #11. I only partially agree. I know you are normally a chevy man but as far as mechanical soundness goes I think ford is far superior to dodge and considerably more stout than the chevy and I believe this trend will continue. This is just my opinion but it seems to meet with the majority. I do agree there may be some rough water ahead with the new 6.0 diesel but not for sure. The Dmax has come through for chevy pretty well for a new offering, maybe ford will get lucky too.
    Back to unions. Don't let yourself think for a second that the need for unions is over. If employers went unchallenged we would loose all of the benifits our forefathers/mothers fought for. You want proof take a look at some of the "right to work states" out there. Unions set the standard for all workplace benifits and without them rest assured they would rapidly diminish.
    Unfortunately you and Pushplay are right. A lot of energy is spent defending undeserving people who have figued a way to use the system to do as little as possible without getting fired. Although this happens it is not the epedimic that everyone seems to think. The problem is that when a case of this nature comes up it is newsworthy and gets a lot of press. This is what John/Jane Q Public has read about or seen on TV and the only info used when they form an opinion about unions. What doesn't get any press is the daily workings of the unions providing a fair working environment for the rest of the membership.
    Pushplay, I didn't slam you, I reacted when you slammed me an every other union member in the country. You said "Nobody is lumping everyone together just stating the facts" but in your previous post you said "If you have been around unions at all you know that the only thing they are worried about is getting something for nothing and I was in a union once". That sounds like lumping everyone together to me. Now that you have informed me that you were SEC/Treasurer you may have shed some light on the problems with your particular union. As I stated before a union is only as good as its members. People who complain about situations without doing anything to rectify them have no business in a leadership position. If there is a problem fix it. When you quit and run away only to assign blame from afar I ask why didn't you use your position to solve the problems you were having when you had the chance. It takes a strong person to take responsibility and solve difficult problems. Anyone can quit and assign blame to others for their shortcommings. The responsible hard working majority do not end up with nothing as you said before. They get all of the benifits we have all worked so hard to attain. The few deadbeat stragglers we have to put up with is a small and temporary price to pay as they will eventually hang themselves.
  • v12powerv12power Posts: 174
    You illustrated the problem yourself when you said "They get all of the benifits we have all worked so hard to attain"

    Define for me what hard work you did to DESERVE all of those benifits. Did you increase production and profits for the company? Or like in most cases the union argued that all people have rights to all of these freebies. Unions make me ill, they foster laziness, you have admitted it yourself, they fight for the deadbeats.

    I was in a union once at UPS. We voted to strike, the US govt said no way. Tell me what good the union did there? They are past their prime. If my workers tried to unionize I would simply close the doors. Unions are dinasours, wake up man.
  • v12powerv12power Posts: 174
    I have a '99 ford and a '01 chevy. I much prefer the Ford. The chev would make a nice quiet car but the Ford is a far superior workhorse.
  • I will make only one point that will answer all of your questions in this particular case. You asked "Define for me what hard work you did to DESERVE all of those benifits. Did you increase production and profits for the company?" My answer... I worked 80 hours a week 7 days a week for four months straight last winter in the snow. The company had environmental issues to address and could only work during daylight hours and had to be completed by spring or the project would be shut down for another year. By working the hours we did we saved the company millions of dollars (increased profit) by busting our butts and getting it done in half the time expected (increased production). I made a lot of money and so did the company, a mutual relationship. If it was not for unions there would be no such thing as overtime pay and the companies would reap all the benifits of our hard work. Since you sound like a company owner I can see how this may sound appealing to you. I am awake man and I am trying to show others that they are valuable not disposable work units.
    Does anyone out there prefer anything other than the Ford combo as far as diesels are concerned. It seems unanimous on this thread.
  • v12powerv12power Posts: 174
    I certainly respect you contributions. I vented, we can just let that issue lie.

    I really do like the Ford, I had a Dodge Cummins before the Ford, no brand loyalty here. The engine was very stout, the rest of the truck left much to be desired. I put five transmissions in that truck before selling it with 180k working miles. The engine still ran perfectly and had good power, I can't fault the Cummins. The Chevy has been a problem. They have tried to appeal to 1500 owners with a HD truck. I had an engineer from Allison come and ride in my truck. The trans is great, the computer programming GM uses, compromises it with big loads. I hauled 15k lbs back from Atlanta in fourth gear because the trans refused to hold fifth gear. 5mpg in a diesel truck, pretty sad. I think my visit with Allison has sparked a computer upgrade that MAY fix the problem. The Duramax is very strong, and very quiet, no complaints there. For a workhorse though I have to reccomend the Ford. Leaf springs and solid axles may not ride the best but they are better in a heavy duty application. The Power Stroke is on the way out but I think it is a great engine. Either the Ford or Dodge can be seriously upped in power as well. Something to consider if towing big stuff with your personal truck. Mine are stock because they are for work, with multiple drivers. I have to reccomend the Ford, I have owned a lot of vehicles and this one has been really good to me.
  • In your Dodge, was your engine the H.O. 24 Valve? Back in post #60 I stated virtually the same opinion as you did in your last post. I feel Ford has by far the most stout truck, all three have great diesels and all three of the auto trannies are junk but the allison seems to have the most potential. Re-stating my opinion, I would like a Cummins 24V H.O. engine in a Ford truck and if Allison can work the bugs out of them I would include it in my hybrid masterpiece. I liked the Cummins solely because I am partial to inline six cylinder diesels. Allison could make me happy by having a manual mode where it will shift into whatever gear you want and stay there regaurdless of speed, load or throttle position and having a toggle to manually lock up the torque converter. This would be the perfect truck. You could take it out of professional driver mode enabling the general public to drive it like a grocery getter when necessary but having the option would sell me one in a second!
  • v12powerv12power Posts: 174
    My Dodge was a '92, last of the old body, which is probably the cause of most of the body related defects. It was not the 24V, but was intercooled unlike the very first ones. Noise be dammed I agree that the Cummins B series engine is superb. With some upgrades it can crank out 800 lb/ft of torque all day long. None of the competition can say that. I really like the Allison. It is GMs computer programming that has spoiled the truck. Interestingly enough, when I began to complain I ended up getting help from Allison directly. Just goes to show what GM thinks of their customers. The grade braking feature on the Allison should be on every pick-up. It slows the truck very well even heavily loaded. The engines are way ahead of the transmissions right now. The Allison is the only ray of hope out there. I think you put together the perfect combo, Ford chassis, which is essentially the same up through an F550, Cummins 5.9 with Gale Banks power pack for 800 lb/ft and a properly programmed Allison trans. That would be a giant killer, too bad it is only a dream.
  • Did anyone here think of just buying a MANUAL diesel??
    Who in their right mind would buy an automatic in a truck built to haul heavy loads??

    I've said it before and I'll say it once more: The only reason to put an auto behind a diesel is if you only use the truck for show or a grocery getter.
    If you use your truck for work you'll lose every time with an auto.
    Quit complaining and get a manual in that "Duramaxi-pad"(I mean Duramax:)and all your problems will disappear!
  • saddaddysaddaddy Posts: 566
    I have no doubt that those chips for yall's diesels improve the power by as much as you say, but I have a few questions. Why do diesels have so much power couped up that isn't usable without a chip? It seems that since the extra power is achieved after the addition of such a simple component, they would have this much power to begin with. Is there a downside to these miracle chips that is never discussed or what? Also, dont flame me for being a Yota man, I long for the days when I can have my Taco for playin and a diesel to yank my boat around with. L8r
  • jcave1jcave1 Posts: 137
    Why not use diesel for playin? I do and love it. Nothing wrong with that Taco, they're great trucks and last forever.

    Todays diesels are detuned programmatically for various reasons. Primarly these are whimpy auto- trannies and differentials. Dodge experienced these problems early on and made improvements as of course did Ford. GM implemented a very beafy Allison with stainless drive line, and huge differential to ward off failures.

    I've not reprogrammed (chipped) mine and probably won't. Don't need more power and it goes just fine stock. Drove a turbo diesel one time and was hooked.
  • v12powerv12power Posts: 174
    Yeah, get a manual. I had one in my '92 Dodge, actually by the time I was done with it I had five transmissions in that truck, great idea. My trucks also plow snow and have multiple drivers. The auto takes a bunch of stress off of the driveline, everything lasts longer.

    I am not a fan of simply "chipping" a vehicle. I like Banks systems because the address airflow restrictions on the intake, exhaust and in the intercoolers. "Chipping" your truck is a great way to blow it up.

    jcave is right on. The engines can easily destroy the drivelines. Then fuel economy is a facotr, longevity, etc.
  • sebring95sebring95 Posts: 3,241
    One thing with the chips you have to watch is EGT's. If they come from the factory chipped out where some moron can run 80mph up a mountain pulling 15,000# you'll have melt-down. First thing you do when chipping is put in guages so you can keep an eye on things. Of course you can swap out other stuff to avoid those problems but how much do you think the manufacturer is really going to do? In the case of the cummins, the main engine is the same one used in various heavy-duty vehicle with programming, injector, exhaust, and oil pan changes. They just tune them down for the light-duty trucks. If you want to turn them back up you can, but you need to be prudent or you'll destroy something.

    The auto tranny can only handle so much torque, as can the standard clutches so to do extreme tuning you've got to invest in more than just a chip. I went with an approx. 50hp and 80lb-ft increase in my Ram and the mpg went up by 1 when towing, down by one when empty (heavier foot probably). I can tow with that and have no problems with the auto tranny (which I, my driver, and my wife prefer) or my EGT's getting out of hand.
  • "The auto takes a bunch of stress off of
    the driveline, everything lasts longer."

    HUMM, that's funny that seems to be the big complaint around here!

    "My Auto is slipping" "My Allison tranny won't hold 5th gear" "My automatic is overheating"

    Tell me why then do Ford and Dodge slightly de-tune their diesels for the auto trannies?? Maybe it's because they can't handle the stock torque ratings!!!
  • jcave1jcave1 Posts: 137
    Auto trannies are easier on the drivetrain, there's no clutch to dump, gears to miss etc. This has always been true regardless of the engine. You bet, diesels can easily destroy an auto-trany since engine technology is greatly advanced of the old juice box. Lets not forget the "driver" factor here however. Some failures are due to heavy footed hot rod drivers, or worse, plain old negligence.

    Show us a manufacture who doesn't have a lemon engine or tranny from time to time. Problem here is getting them to step up and fix it. This of course leads to another sore subject, quality trained technicians. At least with Cummins you're not stuck with dealership service. Not flaming dealerships necessarily, some must be good.

    This PSD is my first automatic. Don't tow heavy loads so hopefully it will hold its own. Do miss the clutch and being able to select gears, however, the auto is a blast to drive.
  • Okay jcave1, I see your point.

    I have a problem with certain people on here who use their truck for a workhorse and beat the piss out of them. Then turn around and complain that their trannies are failing. If you use a truck like that you have to expect things to wear out.

    I have seen a stock Dodge tranny on a Cummins go 180k before any problems. But this person was real anal about maintenance and care of the truck. Plus he only towed a boat 2-3 times per year. And did some traveling unladen during the summer months. So it can be done. Just don't complain when you use the truck for work and things break.
  • jcave1jcave1 Posts: 137
    Obviously a prudent owner using it as a workhorse should also take care of it. Believe most do. There are definitley the bad guys though.

    Issue I have are those who mod them to death, blow it to smithereens, then whine.

    Take care
  • LOL yeah I know a few

  • v12powerv12power Posts: 174
    I have the original auto tranny in my Ford at 160k miles. It has had a fluid change(complete) every 30k since new. The truck works hard every day. It tows big loads and plows snow. I have had NO problems with the truck since new, but it gets VERY well maintained. Fluids are always changed on the severe duty schedule. All of my vehicles get prime treatment. I will not apologize for working them. It used to be thats what trucks were for. Now they are mostly gas hogging grocery getters. That is ruining the trucks for those of us that really NEED them.

    Chevy came out with a new rig, 2000lbs more towing capacity than my Ford. I thought, this is the truck for me if it can pull more than the one that is working very well. The allison does not overheat, it even has a factory temp gauge, a very nice touch. But when they say it can go 22k combined that is what I expect, is that so unreasonable? It will not pull in fifth because of a GM computer program snafu. Allison has looked at the truck. We put a laptop in it and drove it loaded for half a day to collect data. By allisons own admission this is not how they want the trans to perform. I do not beat the trucks. You would never know the milage on the Ford without the odometer, it drives and looks nearly as new. You pegged me wrong.

    When I bought the Ford there was NO power difference between auto and manual. The Ford message boards were showing trouble with the six speed, the dealer, a heavy truck dealer selling light duty pick-ups as well recomended this set-up. They were right it works. Chevy mis represented the truck, sure I'm pissed, it cost neary $40k. I suspect you would feel the same. Now factor in trying to make money with it while it sits in the shop.
  • Easy cowboy, you sound like you think you know what we want and need more than we do. Some of us buy trucks with all the bells and whistles just cause we can afford them, others (myself included) have particular needs in mind. I would have got a manual for the longevity and control but it would not do what I need it to do. Just because you know what you need don't preach to me about my setup that you know nothing about.
  • v12powerv12power Posts: 174
    If he wants to drive a Dodge Cummins he must choose the manual. The auto is way downrated, 460 lb/ft vs. 520 for the manual. The difference at Ford is just 20 lb/ft, so you still get some good power.
  • I am not so sure. Hey everyone, whoever knows for certain please correct me but I dont think they detune engines any differently between transmission options. What I think is happening (and I am pretty sure) is that some manufacturers are measuring h.p. and torque at the transmission output shaft instead of at the engine crankshaft. I think Ford started this to make their numbers look better with the mechanical advantage of the transmission. Just a thought.
  • jrosasmcjrosasmc Posts: 1,711
    All right, listen to this. In an earlier post, I noted that my roommate's dad drove a 2000 Chevy K3500 4x4 Dually with the infamous 6.5-liter turbodiesel. It recently rolled over 80k miles, and guess what? The engine blew and he just had to have a new one installed in the truck. It cost him about $7,500 in all. I think this just shows us how crappy these 6.5 diesel engines were and how shoddy the old-generation C/K trucks were in general.
This discussion has been closed.