2.5 or 5 ton 6x6 In SE Michigan?

Simmerco

New member
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SE Michigan
Hi.
First post. I currently don’t own a military vehicle, but I’m looking for one and I did have an old army trailer years ago.
Sorry if this is the wrong place to ask this question. I’m on a nonprofit lake board and we acquired an aquatic weed harvester last fall. We limped it home with an hd pickup, but it’s not going to be able to safely launch the thing. I’m thinking that a military dump truck would be ideal for launching and also for hauling the seaweed away. The harvester weighs about 18,000 lbs with the trailer.
So:
1. Would a deuce or a 5ton be better for launching a piece of equipment this size on uneven terrain?
2. Anyone in SE MI care to demonstrate/launch for us before we take the plung? (We’ll pay you)
 

Bill Nutting

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Chesterfield, Mi.
Welcome to the site. You are on the right track. 2.5 and 5 ton trucks are built to pull heavy things. Take a look at Military Vehicle Collectors Club of Michigan, MVCCMI.org. We are located in S.E. Michigan. Come to one of our events or a general membership meeting and you will meet folks that own these trucks. You will have an opportunity to get inside these machines and see which one best suits your needs. Go to the web site to see our upcoming events and stop by to meet the group. Next weekend there is a large vehicle show and swap meet in Findlay Ohio. It is held in the Hancock County Fair Grounds. A lot of us will be there. Look for this truck and ask around for for Bill Nutting, I will be glad to share my opinions but encourage you to ask others for theirs. Findlay is a bit over two hours from you. I think you will find it worth the time investment.
292A819C-0DF2-421C-AFBE-C6D7FD1BBA37.jpeg
 

Mullaney

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Charlotte NC
Hi.
First post. I currently don’t own a military vehicle, but I’m looking for one and I did have an old army trailer years ago.
Sorry if this is the wrong place to ask this question. I’m on a nonprofit lake board and we acquired an aquatic weed harvester last fall. We limped it home with an hd pickup, but it’s not going to be able to safely launch the thing. I’m thinking that a military dump truck would be ideal for launching and also for hauling the seaweed away. The harvester weighs about 18,000 lbs with the trailer.
So:
1. Would a deuce or a 5ton be better for launching a piece of equipment this size on uneven terrain?
2. Anyone in SE MI care to demonstrate/launch for us before we take the plung? (We’ll pay you)
.
Really good advice. Walking among the trucks, talking to people who own them, asking questions and getting opinions... Heck of A Plan! There are several listings that I have seen in Michigan recently so there are definitely trucks close to you.

The Deuce is lighter than a 5-Ton but neither of those trucks would be overworked hauling 20,000#. One thing to consider is adding a little weight over the back wheels especially on a wet boat ramp could make your life easier. Just guessing that there won't be a lot of tongue weight once the harvester is unloaded, so weight is a real plan.

There is a CLASSIFIED section here too. Maybe look around and get some ideas on pricing before shopping in person. The prices are fairly consistent. Great trucks and Average trucks seem to be priced the same - in my opinion. A few hundred bucks in fuel and time where somebody is willing to launch your harvester would be a heck of a good investment!

WELCOME to the group. Don't hesitate to ask questions.
Take a few pictures of your "to be towed" rig so we know how to be helpful.
 

tobyS

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IN
Deuces are great but the 5 ton 939A2 series is way more user friendly. Cummins 8.3 turbo is a modern engine and the allisons in them are reliable. If you want to haul wet seaweed, put a lift on the bed. A 923A2 cargo in great shape can be found. 929A2 is good but the beds are small (and high) compared to cargo.
 

Simmerco

New member
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8
3
Location
SE Michigan
Hi Bill.
Thanks for the invitation. I know Findlay well. My late uncle was heavily involved with the steam engine there. My nephew’s birthday is this weekend so I’ll have to see if I’m allowed to sneak off for a day. I can’t buy a truck if my wife kills me.
Here is a picture of the harvester. We acquired it from the Metroparks last year. It’s 10’ wide and 44’ long as it sits now. With the side wheels installed it’s 16’ wide.
If a 5 ton is more user friendly, that’s what I want and lower sides is generally a good thing since I’ll be using this to replace my one ton stake bed. Bed capacity isn’t a huge deal as we’re only hauling the weeds a few hundred yards.
74FDF52D-5CDE-4FAD-83D3-C9913543E1A0.jpeg74FDF52D-5CDE-4FAD-83D3-C9913543E1A0.jpeg
 

tobyS

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Location
IN
I would want the length of a cargo for that rig but I would be tempted to cut the bed back to the frame end and expose the pintle, remove bumperettes.

Here is a he thing with the 5 ton. It hates backing up in low range and for some reason after pictures, pulling this out may require low tc gear. Backing with load going in will not put too much stress, I believe. So when your ready, your not fighting it to go in low,
 

Bill Nutting

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Location
Chesterfield, Mi.
That's quite the rig! So now we need to talk about where you are launching it. Will it be a paved boat ramp or just a taper on the shore line? If it's a paved boat ramp I would stay away from NDT tires. Those ramps can get slippery with alga and weeds. Super singles or radial tires would be better. My M934 has radial tires because it went through a "reset". They replaced the original NDT's with radials, added ABS, upgraded hoses and probably other stuff. NDT's are designed for dirt and mud. They have lousy grip on wet pavement. Super Singles replaced dual tires on the drive axels. One wide tire instead of two narrower tires. My truck has dual radial tires. They are great on wet pavement. I'm not sure off road in soft dirt and mud because I have never had the want to test if I can get it stuck. The down side to a 5 ton vs 2.5 ton is you need a bigger tow truck to pull out a stuck 5 ton... ;) The 5 ton trucks have a better top speed, but the way you are using it I don't see that being a big deal. The 5 ton trucks have power steering, so maneuvering that trailer it tight spots would be easier than a truck without power steering. Power steering can be added to a 2.5 ton truck. It's a fairly common mod and you may even find one that has been modified... See why I wanted to talk in person??? I hope this helps. Please seek advice from others on this site. Most everyone here knows more about these trucks than me!
 

Bill Nutting

Well-known member
Steel Soldiers Supporter
357
524
93
Location
Chesterfield, Mi.
I would want the length of a cargo for that rig but I would be tempted to cut the bed back to the frame end and expose the pintle, remove bumperettes.

Here is a he thing with the 5 ton. It hates backing up in low range and for some reason after pictures, pulling this out may require low tc gear. Backing with load going in will not put too much stress, I believe. So when your ready, your not fighting it to go in low,
TobyS, This is where I get confused (it doesn't take much). Is the reversing in low Transfer Case range problem (blowing up the transfer case) only with the 800 series 5 ton or does it apply to the 900 series 5 ton trucks as well? :unsure: The other question I have is, if the military knew this was a problem why didn't they get it fixed? Instead they gave these truck to some poor soldier to drive and if he forgot to put the TC in high and he backed up, the darn thing would eat itself alive!,,, Typical.
 

tobyS

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Location
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It's a 939 series problem with the Rockwell T1138. I guess the 809'series does not do it. But then you have a clutch on a ramp.

I've made the comment that it took a government to put a warning on the dash instead of fix the problem in the TC design. See, with a dump, I want to back up on my pile sometimes. there is an automatic engagement of the front when the TC is shifted to low. That auto engagement needs disconnected so my front does not engage....unless I throw the dash switch.

My point is that while you are moving in low backwards, that one needs to be pushing with some force to do the nasty and backing down will not do it. Trying to back it up a hill on land in low....yea that might win the prize.
 

Mullaney

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Supporting Vendor
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Charlotte NC
Hi Bill.
Thanks for the invitation. I know Findlay well. My late uncle was heavily involved with the steam engine there. My nephew’s birthday is this weekend so I’ll have to see if I’m allowed to sneak off for a day. I can’t buy a truck if my wife kills me.
Here is a picture of the harvester. We acquired it from the Metroparks last year. It’s 10’ wide and 44’ long as it sits now. With the side wheels installed it’s 16’ wide.
If a 5 ton is more user friendly, that’s what I want and lower sides is generally a good thing since I’ll be using this to replace my one ton stake bed. Bed capacity isn’t a huge deal as we’re only hauling the weeds a few hundred yards.
View attachment 834092View attachment 834092
.
I spotted a bigger question... You mention 10 feet wide in your post (#6). I found a Michigan post that says " Weekend movement is permitted for loads not exceeding 10' in width, 14' high, and 90' long."

Guessing that you have already got that problem solved.
Ten feet depending on the person with the ruler might be an issue.

I went out and scratched around and found https://www.legislature.mi.gov/documents/2003-2004/billanalysis/House/htm/2003-HLA-0736-5.htm
that seems to contradict that - but it is old. There is specific mention of Interstates and roads that are not, so before you drag that trailer down a little two lane highway - you need to talk to somebody smarter than me - to get the rules spelled out. That would be much cheaper than paying an overwidth ticket!

---

EDIT by Tim:

On the other hand, if the launch is at the end of your neighborhood road I would take the gamble.
 

porkysplace

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mid- michigan
Yeah. It will be on a dead end road for about 350’ from the end of my driveway to the “ramp”. If we need to move it elsewhere to store or to service, we’ll do it on side streets on a Sunday morning.
You can get a cab card from the county for over width , It's not worth the fines to not move it legally . Sundays and holidays oversize loads are noy permitted in michigan.
 

Bill Nutting

Well-known member
Steel Soldiers Supporter
357
524
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Location
Chesterfield, Mi.
You can get a cab card from the county for over width , It's not worth the fines to not move it legally . Sundays and holidays oversize loads are noy permitted in michigan.
Yes, get the cab card and don’t forget to not smile while driving on a Michigan road. Governor Witless has outlawed smiling on Michigan roads... ;)
 
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