I need to tow a 8,000, maybe a 9,000 lbs trailer (total weight). I know I need a 3/4 ton. So I was looking for one from late late 80's or early 90's. I would prefer the 5.8L, the old 351 engine but problem is it is pretty hard to find one with the right rear axle of 4.10 and long enough wheelbase and of course the towing package. All the F250's I've seen had 3.73 rear axles. I wasn't really interested in changing 3.73 gears to 4.10 in an old truck.
I will be towing 3-5K miles/year maximum. Occasionally. The rest of the time, this vehicle will be used as a daily driver. For this reason, I wanted the small block V8 (whether in Ford or anything else)
But all things considered it seems like the bigger 7.5L makes more sense because it usually comes with 4.10 or 3.73 rear axles and it can properly tow the kinds of trailers I am thinking about. I want to tow the trailer properly and not overheat anything, the engine, the tranny, etc. Eventually I gave up trying to find the 5.8L/4.10 rear combo, and that's what I decided to get, a 3/4 ton F250 H.D. with the bigger engine.
I found a '90 F250 HD with a 460. Even though it is not that great as a daily driver with its MPG, I am in the process of getting it. (Any tips on inspecting it?)
I considered other choices like a diesel, but I wouldn't drive enough for its MPG economy to make sense, and I don't want one as a daily driver anyway.
Question: Has anyone towed a 8-9Klbs trailer with a 5.8L/4.10 rear --- versus with a 7.5L/4.10 rear? I would like to hear from someone who has done both.
Here's what I have owned and my perspective on small blocks vs big blocks in these trucks.
1. 1993 2wd F250HD 5.8 3.55 axle
2. 1993 4wd F350 SRW 5.8 3.55 axle
3. 1995 4wd F350 SRW 7.5 3.55 axle
4. 1996 4wd F350 SRW 7.5 3.55 axle (I still own this one)
With the 3.55 axle here's what I"ve experienced.
The 7.5 doesn't do much worse on fuel in these trucks when unloaded and actually gets better fuel mileage towing than the 5.8.
The 7.5 cruises and tows much better than the 5.8.
The 5.8 is a great and reliable engine,but it is on the small side for the size of these trucks.
Of course the 5.8 will do better with the 4.10 axle but it doesn't have muscle of the big block.
I had an '89 F250HD with the 5.8L, 5spd manual, to be honest I can't remember if it was the 3.73 or 4.10, but it was always screaming, even in OD, so I think it was the 4.10. It was a pretty gutless truck IMHO. It would pull an equipment trailer with a 6-7000 Bobcat on it, but it didn't like, and big hills were a 50-60km/h 3rd gear proposition. It got about 7-8mpg towing that kinda weight, and maybe 9 towing a two place snowmobile trailer and one in the box, and let's just say I wasn't going to be passing anyone, even with that small load.
My advice, get the 460. The mileage sucks, but the power is there when you need it, besides my mileage sucked with 5.8 too.