As some of you may or may not know, I recently acquired a 1978 F-250 Custom 2wd long bed reg cab truck. It has a 351m mated to an auto C6, and a dana 60 in the rear. I bought it for the bed to replace the rusted one on my nice 78 f250. The truck itself runs great.
Anyways, I've been wondering what to do with the rest of the custom. I've finally settled on putting a rollback flat bed on it so that I pull cars onto it to transport. I realize that this is a big project that may be beyond my capabilities, as well as those of the truck in question.
I have a fair bit of scrap metal to work with, and I can afford to buy more. I have some welding skill, lots of time and patience, and a knack for being creative...
I don't intend on this truck carrying anything heavier than itself. I realize that I will be maxing out the carrying capacity of the truck. But I believe that I could easily haul any small to midsize car, and a good variety of vans and trucks.
I don't intend on using this commercially, just for personal use only.
Anyways, do you guys have any opinions on the matter? Any suggestions?
Here's a couple of pictures of the truck, there is more in my gallery.
1974 Ford F-100, Straight 6, 3 speed on the Tree, 2wd. mostly stock....for now!
(10/6) NEwS flaSh: new clutch, new gear oil in the tranny.
thoughts on fixing daily drivers: work now, sleep later
You'll be going beyond just maxing out the truck's gvwr. Don't forget the weight of the rollback you want to build when doing your calculations. Gvwr minus weight of the vehicle with full fuel and occupants equals max. cargo weight. The max. cargo weight is the most you can safely haul on the vehicle. You will probably need a dual rear axle with beefed up brakes at a minimum. Then you will need to get it all built complete, load it up with your winch (or other form of come-along) tie-down straps and/or chains & boomers, etc. and get it weighed to see what capacity you've got left - my guess is, not much left to play with. Don't take this wrong, but also don't take this lightly - the fines and penalties for running dangerously are tough to swallow!
1977 F150 Ranger Shortbox 4x4
"I ain't as good as I once was
But I'm as good once, as I ever was" - T.K.
I'm well aware of that. I haven't yet calculated all the weight math. I'm waiting on ford to send me a build sheet that hopefully will tell me the gvwr. Then I'll go from there...
If it could reliably haul a small to midsize car then I'd be very happy with that alone...
I was doing a some google searching of a simliar type of truck with a rollback bed. I did find quite a few f350 trucks of various years that had a rollback bed. They had a single axle in the back with dually tires. I'm guessing they were a little beefier than a dana 60 (dana 70 or some such) Along with beefier brakes and engine cooling accessories.
Everything between a f250 and f350 is the same except for the brakes, springs, and sometimes axles (at least in these 1970's trucks) So with a little money and elbogrease mine should be comparatively capable.
By the way, I don't plan on having the bed actually tilt back. It will be permantly fixed, but will instead have an extended angled portion that will have detachable ramps. That should avoid a little weight from the hydraulics and such.
Not answering your question in the way you might want, but why not make a nice flatbed for it which won't be as heavy as building a rollback and then setting it up to haul a single car trailer or car dolly to haul your cars around. I think you might stay more in your weight limits that way and you won't have to convert to dually wheels or anything like that.
Man I hate to rain on anyones parade, but Up here in Illinois, If it's a rollback, it has to be insured as a commercial tow vehicle, which must be plated correctly, insured properly, wtc, or they will tag your but. Not to mention a 3/4 ton isn't considered by authorities as robust enough for that kind of service. I love your enthusiasm, but unless you live on a farm or want to use it only at a racetrack to relocate vehicles, the pig probably wont fly no matter how cool you make her. Darn government!
I'll probably just end up putting a flat bed on it...
Maybe I could rig up something to lift and tow the front end of a vehicle...
Do you guys reckon a wooden floor could be built strong enough to support a midsize car while saving a significant amount of weight? If that's a stupid question I apologize for my stupidity..lol
I had planned on building the bed as lightly as possible. For the floor I was going to use that diamond shaped thick steel mesh that's often used for small utility trailers. I was going to support that with several pieces of angle iron and/or c-channel. For the bulkhead behind the cab I was just going to weld together some 1/4" x 3" steel together, like something you'd find on a forklift. Then just a basic winch, some tow hooks, and then buy a pair of steel ramps and modify them to hinge off the end of the angled portion of the bed...
I don't know, I'm gonna think it over more and do some math...
That steel mesh isn't terribly strong, so it would be easy to make a wooden floor as strong as that. The problem is that you'll need a fair bit of structure underneath to support the wood or mesh. It's that structure that is going to be the heaviest part.
Hey just my 2 cents ,but I'd do what 73 said.Turn it into a tow rig.With a nice trailer or dolly.The DOT are like NAZI's If u notice there are NO 1 ton or less ramp trks used by tow companies at all anymore.You'll stick out like a sore thumb.Even if u build to come in under GVW with what u make for a bed and a sm car.They'll get you with the tires.U wont be able to find (within reason) 6 tires that will be able be properly rated fo the weight.I've been down this road.1st was a steel bed,then aluminum bed,then they got me on the tires.After that I went to a f600 and no more problems.Good luck which ever way u go
Here's a Cheby rollback that someone owns in my neighborhood.
That looks like a 1 ton truck to me. It's got duallys in the back, and it has stow-away ramps that slide under the bed. It does have a very long wheelbase. Mine would be as short as I could get away with...
That's the first time I've seen cable laying loose on that truck actually.
Semantics aside, that's more or less what I had intended to create, although significantly shorter... I never intended on the bed actually tilting backward. It would just have an angled portion with slideout ramps. Heck, I might be able to do without the angled portion period... I'm not sure if the angle would be too sharp for some cars....
So now that we're clear on what I had intended to build, is it still going to cause me trouble with the gvwr and the dot and whatnot? Basically it'll be a long flatbed with an angled portion and ramps....
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