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View Full Version : i need to buy a dang truck...


euroford
02-21-2013, 09:59 AM
arrg... this is something i'm both looking forward too and have been dreading.

it is time for me to begin the process of attempting to locate a used truck that i sort of like, and then purchase it for a reasonable price.

being somewhat new to the area (3 years) i'm not very familiar with what dealership or used cars lots would be worth my time to check out, thus far shopping has been limited to searching craigslist and autotrader, with mixed results. having just purchased a used welder via craigslist, i expect this to go about the same where i'll waste an incredible amount of time attempting to deal with sketchy people who hope they are going to turn a profit from a money pit...

actually... i think the whole truck thing is going to be a lot worse, which is why i would appreciate any varied advice you guys might have.

okay, i could elaborate on and on... but i should probably do some work and see if this discussion actually goes anywhere.

subzali
02-21-2013, 10:16 AM
I bought my Tundra off c-list. Turned out well. Just my experience.

What are you looking for? Make, model, usage, etc.?

coax
02-21-2013, 10:19 AM
Not much experience, I bought my cruiser off Craigslist, and the transaction went well.

If I was in the market for a non-diesl truck, I'd get a First Gen Tundra. Very reasonably priced, great engine, and its a great size.

J Kimmel
02-21-2013, 10:40 AM
been doing it for 15 years, if you'd like some insight you can pm me if you'd like :) I can at least give you direction.

Jeremy

DaveInDenver
02-21-2013, 10:53 AM
We bought our Jetta from CL and bought & sold our 4Runner on there, too. You can weed through stuff pretty quick. If there are no photos, the grammar is terrible, contact info is missing or weird then don't even bother. I set up an email with Hotmail that is only for Craigslist to prevent spam and phishing. If you email someone and it bounces or seems off, just stop replying. It's really the best way to find a used car IMHO, but being free you do have to wade through the crap that wouldn't have been in the classified.

spectre6000
02-21-2013, 11:19 AM
I've never bought a car from a dealer. Figure out what you want, study the hell out of it to figure out what you're looking for (options, trouble spots, maintenance history, etc.). Then TAKE YOUR TIME and find the best one out there. Don't buy one prior to the 6th or so you look at IN PERSON). Nothing can ruin the used car buying process more thoroughly than buying the first one you find.

Don't waste money on CarFox reports, inspect the vehicle yourself.

In newer trucks, check the VIN stickers on all of the body panels to be sure of its history in terms of accidents. Every major panel (body, quarters, doors, hood, sometimes even bumpers, etc.) has a VIN sticker. They should all be present and they should all match. If one is missing or mismatched, it's not a deal killer, just check that panel and those around it carefully for signs of work, filler, panel alignment, broken attachment points, missing/chipped paint/wrinkles etc.

The "weather" should be bright and sunny with some clouds. Road grime is fine, leaks are not. There should be no drips. If it's spotless, it's been cleaned and you have to find out why. A dirty car is an honest car. Most important, you'd better be UNDER that car at some point in your inspection.

Know what came with the car from the factory (this goes back to the studying). Tool kits, cargo covers, literature, etc. In the best case scenario, these are bargaining chips, worst case and you're going ta have to track them down later.

If the truck in question is known to have any recalls or trouble spots, be sure they're addressed and documented. If they haven't been addressed (i.e. timing belts), bake it into your budget. In fact, assume that any factory suggested maintenance that doesn't have a receipt hasn't been done, know the price of these items, and do them within the second month after purchase (the first month is to see if there are any additional trouble spots that need to be addressed at the same time).

Flat white is the easiest/cheapest color in terms of body work. Anything darker is worse. Flat black is pretty bad. Metallics are terrible. Black metallic... You'd better really like that paint.

Finally (and most obvious) test drive it. Check every single feature and function. Know what it's supposed to sound like and how it is supposed to behave (which is why you check out a half dozen before you start looking at the ones you may actually buy). Be knowledgable (or have someone so skilled with you) as to what sounds, rattles, bumps, etc. mean from a mechanical point of view.

Finally, take detailed notes on every specimen you inspect. Compare conditions and prices (be sure to look at a few above your price range for data points and negotiation fodder). Share it with the seller if you think it'll help.

euroford
02-21-2013, 11:22 AM
1st gen Tundra's are nice, one of my buddies just bought one, and my neighbor just bought a brand new Tundra that is well, kind of dead sexy.

in my dream world, i'd find a black 7.3l f350 four door long bed 4x4, with a manual trans in pretty good condition for under $10,000, knowing that it might have some miles on it.

I'll concede that this might just be completely and totally unrealistic, but I did actually almost buy a white one that fit that criteria, and that particular truck may still be an option.


As for use... we already have three vehicles, this would be the forth and i work from home. so we don't intend to drive it very much, it will primarily be used for "truck stuff" or on occasions where the family runs off with all the other cars. given how much i drive my current car, i predict this would be around 4,000 miles/year.

"truck stuff": hauling away a crapload of yard waste, hauling in a crapload of dirt and rock, hauling around firewood, towing my heep and/or other future not that streetable vehicles that we might adopt, etc. buying lumber... transporting stuff like rototillers.

it might go on one or two big trips a year if we are willing to take the pocket book hit in fuel to haul stuff back and forth. moab or visiting family in michigan and texas. we would kind of like to go to KOH next year for example.

euroford
02-21-2013, 11:37 AM
I'll add that i'm glad to hear ya'll have had good experiences buying from craigslist, i'll say that I have had mostly good dealings myself, including buying/selling 8 different cars.

the truck thing just seams... i dunno.... weird. i guess too many people spent $60,000 on a truck and racked up 250,000 miles in three years and want to sell it for $35,000 to pay off the loan!

ahhhk! i just have this impending sense of frustration with the whole thing.

coax
02-21-2013, 12:02 PM
in my dream world, i'd find a black 7.3l f350 four door long bed 4x4, with a manual trans in pretty good condition for under $10,000, knowing that it might have some miles on it.


Someone here at work has an f250 with the 6.0 4 door, yellow:D that he's selling. 14.5k. Not sure what year.

euroford
02-21-2013, 12:15 PM
i'd say the first thing i'm NOT going worry about is color.

but yellow is a deal breaker. i just don't know that i could live with myself. :lmao:

corsair23
02-21-2013, 12:22 PM
How about an Excursion?

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/forum2/showthread.php?t=19127

Should do all of the "truck" stuff except the hauling craploads of yardwaste and the like...It should certainly pull any toys with ease :) - for the occasional yard waste run you could always rent a little trailer for cheap unless it is something you'll be doing a lot of.

SteveH
02-21-2013, 12:39 PM
in my dream world, i'd find a black 7.3l f350 four door long bed 4x4, with a manual trans in pretty good condition for under $10,000, knowing that it might have some miles on it.

Do a lot of homework on 7.3s and (if you must) 6.0s before buying such a thing. Scotty's Excursion is a sweet truck, and you can see how much work has been done to it. These are expensive trucks to maintain (2 batteries, 15 qt. oil changes, air filters, various Ford bugs (alternators, starters, ball joints, transmissions) and licensing. If you purchase 'any old Ford Super Duty' from a private party or dealer, you could be buying a ticking time bomb. Spend time on the FTE forum and read up before you buy. It's far easier buying a used Toyota, but I love my Super Duty for the big jobs.

euroford
02-21-2013, 01:07 PM
thanks for the forum suggestion, i'm going to check that out.

yeah i did a double take on the excursion there. but... i think i really want something with an open bed that i can toss junk into at my convenience. i don't know about the distant future, but at least this coming summer its going to earn its keep and see a ton of use for yardwork duty.

the diesels have a certain appeal... i'll admit that i just kind of -want- one. but, i'll put out there that i am not married to the idea and acknowledge that it may be more trouble than its worth.

I did briefly own one of the v10 f250's, and would consider another. Uncle Ben seams to be pretty happy with his GMC, but i don't know much about those things, despite (or because of) my father still getting a pension from those guys i've just never been a big GM fan. I know a couple of guys with Tundra's, but neither of them have used it to haul a 4x4 in the mountains so i don't really know if its a good truck for that sort of thing.

corsair23
02-21-2013, 02:23 PM
I'd probably lean towards a newer Tundra, with the big V8 :)

Maybe FJBrady will chime in because he has one and tows his 40 on a trailer with it. But I don't think you'll find a newer Tundra for under $10K, even with a zillion miles on it...and certainly not with a manual

euroford
02-21-2013, 02:55 PM
yeah, i'd say a newer one is likely out of the question right now. my neighbor just got one and dang thats a nice truck.

honestly, far too nice for me and what i want it for!

Maybe in the future, after i pay for my wife's fancy new MBA and some more high rise projects downtown!

Juano007
02-21-2013, 04:01 PM
I bought my last used Tacoma from Boulder Nissan. Yes, Nissan. They were great and fair on the price. I purchased another tacoma from Boulder Toyota and though they were good, they were nothing compared to how Boulder Nissan treated me and worked with me on the deal.

euroford
02-23-2013, 08:01 AM
Thanks everybody for the feedback and food for thought, i'm starting to get my head wrapped around this and I might waste some time looking at a couple today.

loudbay
02-23-2013, 08:22 AM
Yellow is a deal breaker!

euroford
02-25-2013, 12:03 PM
well lets see... i have to say that this is actually going A LOT better than i thought. totally not the charlie foxtrot that buying the welder was. I've been finding quite a bit, and people have been extremely pleasant.

I've looked at six trucks thus far, three 7.3's, two 6.0's and a cummins. despite keeping an open mind to other options, thus far diesels are winning simply due to availability.

two of the 7.3's and one of the 6.0's were standouts as being exceptionally well taken care of and meeting all of my mechanical criteria to be acceptable for me. The cummins not so much. he thought the added guages were BY FAR its best selling point...

one of the 7.3's was a front runner in particular, while also being cheapest due to some minor body damage. if it either did not have the body damage, or was a crew cab, i'd be all over it even for a touch more money. replacing a clutch or something for me would be NBD, but bodywork is just something i don't want to deal with...

looking at another 7.3 and another 6.0 later today, both crew cabs this time.

FJBRADY
02-25-2013, 12:42 PM
I'd probably lean towards a newer Tundra, with the big V8 :)

Maybe FJBrady will chime in because he has one and tows his 40 on a trailer with it. But I don't think you'll find a newer Tundra for under $10K, even with a zillion miles on it...and certainly not with a manual

How did I miss this?

Yes I do trailer my 40 with a 07 Tundra with the 5.7 V8 and it does great. I average 18 hwy empty. Tow to Moab 8 mpg at 75 mph, I get 11 mpg if I hold it to 65.

I have had the truck for three years with zero problems.

SteveH
02-25-2013, 04:04 PM
Consider having a Ford dealer run an OASIS report on any Ford you're looking at. They generally won't hand you a printed copy, but they should tell you if scary things show up in the report. They should not charge you for this. The report tells of outstanding recall and service campaign issues as well as dealer-performed repairs.

euroford
02-25-2013, 04:17 PM
How did I miss this?

Yes I do trailer my 40 with a 07 Tundra with the 5.7 V8 and it does great. I average 18 hwy empty. Tow to Moab 8 mpg at 75 mph, I get 11 mpg if I hold it to 65.

I have had the truck for three years with zero problems.

thats nice to know! i think one of those is going to be a bit out of my pricerange right now, but i'll keep an eye out. we also plan to only find a tow pig that will get us by for a couple of years, then buy something nicer new. one of these tundra's will be near the top of the list!

Consider having a Ford dealer run an OASIS report on any Ford you're looking at. They generally won't hand you a printed copy, but they should tell you if scary things show up in the report. They should not charge you for this. The report tells of outstanding recall and service campaign issues as well as dealer-performed repairs.

thanks for that tip!

euroford
02-26-2013, 03:11 PM
man... i spoke too soon. i finally did find a truck last night that i REALLY like, and intend to buy. but... i also found a seller who i think is going to be a total PITA.

:rant:

euroford
03-08-2013, 01:44 PM
Well, I ended up looking at 19 different trucks, mostly 7.3psd's but several others as well and it was a pretty darn interesting experience.

i saw more than a couple of overpriced old trucks, a couple of nice trucks, some really good bargains on old work trucks, and mostly met a bunch of really nice people with a couple of notable exceptions.

this morning i met up with a really nice young guy, who's taken exceptionally good care of a 99psd crew cab that i think will do a great job serving as our familys big rig. he's leaving town for a couple of weeks and we will finalize the sale when he gets back. very stoked! we've never had a diesel so this will be kind of new and different for us.

thanks again everybody for humoring me with a non-yota vehicle vehicle discussion and i really appreciated the feedback and food for thought. it was really helpfull in getting the ball rolling for me.

http://i45.tinypic.com/2dl1b1g.jpg

corsair23
03-08-2013, 01:47 PM
Congrats Tim! Glad you found one that looks like it will work out :thumb:

SteveH
03-08-2013, 01:56 PM
You'll enjoy the turbo in the mountains and the turbo whistle is music to anyone's ears.

euroford
03-08-2013, 02:43 PM
Music to my ears. I've had several turbocharged cars in the past, I've been missing that whistle!

euroford
05-01-2013, 11:33 AM
well, the good news is MISSION ACCOMPLISHED! thanks for the help and motivation!


woooo hooooo!!!

i'm super happy, and ended up with a WAY nicer truck than i thought i was going to get in my intended price range. its in excellent shape in all respects and is outfitted exactly as i would like. even came with a TON of nicely done performance upgrades. it took a bit getting used to, but i really enjoy driving it. i guess i'm going to go try it out in the snew...

downside: yeah, its got over 200,000 miles... but for my purposes i think i can keep her on the road for quite some time.

the thing that REALLY bugs me, is that i need to add a cat before i can etest it :rant:

oh yeah... and uncle ben harrasing me about owning fords... and my 17 year old son harrasing me about driving it.

http://i41.tinypic.com/30w8d5j.jpg

subzali
05-01-2013, 12:07 PM
...
oh yeah... and uncle ben harrasing me about owning fords...

Don't worry, UB harasses people about driving TOYOTAs, so you're not alone :D