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irishflyer97

Mechanical E7 in 2019 (or should I quit being afraid of the 06+)

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Well, looking at getting back into being an owner operator, and looking for my first Mack.  Mechanical E7 vs e tech, one way loaded hauling frac sand, fairly flat ground.  Was their much of a mpg difference with the Etech? (given similar trucks, load, and terrain).  Didn't really want to go newer as oil is a roller-coaster of work, though 06 and up trucks are cheap.  Can emissions deletes make an 07 as reliable as an Etech with the new frame and cooling?

  I plan on modifying any truck I buy anyway with injector upgrade, turbo, and ECM mods to let it work easier.  BTW, the search function seems to be too picky, as I'm not having luck finding a matching answer... Lol. 

 

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You won't being modifying turbo on Mack AC models (above 03). You won't be modifying anything on the MP series (above 07) without the risk of potentially serious, and expensive, repercussions. You can Modify all day on the Mack AI models (03-07)and up to the end of CCRS tier 2....so 2002 and I think a few months into 2003.

If you want new stuff don't be an "end of life" user and don't come in thinking your going to build a "Hot Rod". Go get something good with a warranty. End of life use can be a nightmare for someone unprepared to spend big bucks, or do own work, to keep the emissions system up to par. New stuff gets good mileage and pays for itself on paper as the miles accumulate. Old stuff is reliable for an end of life user and fixable in your garage.

I spend most of my day fixing emissions system gremlins. My Volvos need plenty of attention. I feel better about being a start of life to middle life user.  

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I've been an end of life owner when I had trucks before.  When it was just me, it was pre 03 Volvos, with S60 and VED engines.  I dont want a hotrod; I changed the turbo on the S60 for fuel mileage. Maybe Mack e7 stock is the best route for that?  I do some of my own work, a d the older Mack's seem simple enough vs a S60, as far as swapping fuel system components.

 

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Old trucks are great if you get a good one and have a slow season to work on them. When you've got a daily high mileage run, not so much.

Tonight our city council will have to decide  what to do with a two truck operation that bought a house with a pole building in a residential zoned neighbor hood and thinks they'll turn it into a shop. They have my sympathies, but their business plan makes no sense- running decade or more old Freightliner and Kenworth on a 300 mile round trip bulk haul. Tractors are too heavy and cut into their payload and I'd be surprised if they're even getting 6 MPG. They've already got more money into the building then their trucks are worth, and yesterday they were in the unheated dirt floor shop trying to fix a custom rear of tractor light bar that ain't even DOT required. To be honest, even if we rolled over and gave them a rezoning I doubt they're going to make it... They're competing with a small tank fleet owner whose new Macks are getting 9 MPG hauling similar loads, with that kind of MPG he don't need to fix old trucks. 

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47 minutes ago, keg1 said:

give me an old truck any day of the week

Same here.

The logic built into these emissions system is all the same. It can be summed up...........”If I’m not satisfied with what’s coming out of your stack today your done working till I am”. 

PLN use to crack a million on old lubricants, be interesting to see how far modern lubricants push it past?

Guy I know bought a fleet of pre-03’s from Manders Diesel and runs them profitably @ 7MPG, Maxi’s. 10-12 trucks.

There are people making comfortable livings off old metal. 

The multi-million $ power plant south of here turned in their old D4 for complete refurb. All hoses, pumps, and a new Powertrain. Reason.....they don’t want an 1,100 degree regen going on while it’s rolling coal dust and pushing piles. If it would pop smoke on top of that coal pile(mountain) all worse case scenarios would play out.

It’s case by case, not a cookie cutter topic. 

Edited by Mack Technician
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7 hours ago, Maxidyne said:

Old trucks are great if you get a good one and have a slow season to work on them. When you've got a daily high mileage run, not so much.

Tonight our city council will have to decide  what to do with a two truck operation that bought a house with a pole building in a residential zoned neighbor hood and thinks they'll turn it into a shop. They have my sympathies, but their business plan makes no sense- running decade or more old Freightliner and Kenworth on a 300 mile round trip bulk haul. Tractors are too heavy and cut into their payload and I'd be surprised if they're even getting 6 MPG. They've already got more money into the building then their trucks are worth, and yesterday they were in the unheated dirt floor shop trying to fix a custom rear of tractor light bar that ain't even DOT required. To be honest, even if we rolled over and gave them a rezoning I doubt they're going to make it... They're competing with a small tank fleet owner whose new Macks are getting 9 MPG hauling similar loads, with that kind of MPG he don't need to fix old trucks. 

I don’t see where their profitability should play into the rezoning.   Does the project fit the area and do they meet the criteria.   

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On 11/8/2019 at 10:19 AM, irishflyer97 said:

BTW, the search function seems to be too picky, as I'm not having luck finding a matching answer... Lol. 

Glad to know I'm not the only one to find the search function on this site to be as worthless as tits on a boar hog.

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Council decided unanimously to have our city lawyer send them a cease and desist letter. Guy paid way too much for a dirt floor unheated pole building and an old house, hopefully he won't lose to much reselling it. 

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On 11/11/2019 at 6:35 PM, Outbehindthebarn said:

Glad to know I'm not the only one to find the search function on this site to be as worthless as tits on a boar hog.

I am finding that using a generic search such as "1999 mack etech 400 site:bigmacktrucks.com"  works better than the included search engine, if that helps any.

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When I decided to build my small fleet  of dump trucks. I chose to stay in the 2001-2007 Range to avoid the DPF and regen stuff that I hear people have problems with and to make it easier to build a knowledge base so I can do my own repairs (older trucks do need more maintenance and repairs, but i saw this as an opportunity to learn). I currently have 4 Macks and will have a few more next year, for the price of a newer mack (2013+) I could purchase two 2001-2007 range trucks and with the help of this wonderful forum and other resources, one can stay on top of breakdowns and repairs. I think the key to successfully run older trucks is to build a knowledge base of your equipment, repairs can eat your bank account for breakfast if you aren't careful. Being resourceful, handy, and hard working you can reduce downtime and repair costs. Its almost a must to do your own repairs on older equipment. Part of the reason going to older trucks is to save money, and if you constantly take it to the repair shop, you may not profit. 

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Very true.  One of the reasons why I am thinking Mack.  Overheads, etc,  look easier to do than on Detroit. Injectors certainly cheaper and easier to replace.    I am still dubious about the EGR systems, but it appears the 06-07 models had cooling enhancements, so could be worth looking at. 

Edited by irishflyer97
Completing thought.

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Older trucks make sense when you're in a seasonal business like construction, logging, or agriculture where you have an off season to do rebuilding and often nights off to do repairs. But your goal should be to get financially to the point where you can buy new so you can take advantage of the latest technology to improve productivity. While the 7 MPG the last of he Mack engines can achieve is great, if you put on a lot of miles the 9 MPG the new trucks can provide damn near makes the payments.

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11 hours ago, Maxidyne said:

Older trucks make sense when you're in a seasonal business like construction, logging, or agriculture where you have an off season to do rebuilding and often nights off to do repairs. But your goal should be to get financially to the point where you can buy new so you can take advantage of the latest technology to improve productivity. While the 7 MPG the last of he Mack engines can achieve is great, if you put on a lot of miles the 9 MPG the new trucks can provide damn near makes the payments.

yea because new trucks never break down. the newest truck i owned was a 2000 and i ran year round never had a problem keeping a few bucks in the checkbook. new or old you gotta do some maintenance.

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Every truck needs maintenance, old trucks need more repairs. Most of the companies I drove for ran their trucks two shifts a day and often six or seven days a week, so the technicians only had a couple hours between shifts to work on them as we didn't keep a lot of spare trucks. With the newer trucks they could schedule the maintenance and repairs tended to be lights, tires, etc. that could be done in an hour or so between shifts. Older trucks often needed major component rebuilds that took the truck out of service for days, requiring expensively renting replacement trucks.

You can see the runaway costs of double shifting old trucks in the Hostess bankruptcy filings- They last bought new trucks in 2004 and by the time they shut down in 2012 the average fleet age was 18 years. The bankruptcy filings were full of six figure bills owed to ruck rental companies. There's also the cost of obsolete equipment- If Hostess could have replaced the whole transport fleet in 2012 they'd be getting 8 MPG instead of 6 MPG and have increased productivity too.

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It depends on what kind of work your doing when MPG makes a huge factor. My trucks drive 80-100 miles per day. The difference is about $15 per MPG at the end of the day compared to a newer better MPG truck. Per month $300, per year roughly $3,000. It would take 10 years to make up the differece in price of a newer truck, and thats only at a 30k+ price difference between old and new, which is probably not likely either, more like 50k+. MPG alone would not be enough to warrant switching to a new fleet. I could maybe see 2MPG more if I switch, for 6,000 savings a year buying a $100k+ truck when my current ones are paid for. No thanks. For me this wouldnt work so I stick to older trucks. Im sure for OTR companies that make a lot more money it makes sense.

Edited by ivanuke
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23 hours ago, Maxidyne said:

Older trucks make sense when you're in a seasonal business like construction, logging, or agriculture where you have an off season to do rebuilding and often nights off to do repairs. But your goal should be to get financially to the point where you can buy new so you can take advantage of the latest technology to improve productivity. While the 7 MPG the last of he Mack engines can achieve is great, if you put on a lot of miles the 9 MPG the new trucks can provide damn near makes the payments.

I agree with what you're saying here. When you have a fleet thats working nearly 24/7 it absolutely makes sense to maximize effeciency, to look at trends in consumption, and use the latest tech so you don't lose control over managing the fleet. Everyone knows time is money, and if you're operating at nearly every hour of the day, thats a lot of money. This makes sense to have the latest and greatest. For a small fry like myself picking up bread crumbs, i gotta settle for an old fleet and do the best i can with it until i can start making my own bread 😁

Edited by ivanuke
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48 minutes ago, Mack Technician said:

Well put, It's not a cookie cutter world, moot argument.

Last week I stopped over to do my annual physical on the truck I did the AI thread on. It put on 330 hours. Perfect performance, perfect fit, give it all the fuel it wants to drink, it earned it, owners happy, he saved a bunch of money this year with it. It was so wet they had to move logging equipment constantly with changing ground saturation. He said if he had to pay the contractor for moving his equipment (like he use to), he'd have gone broke waiting. Old truck, paid for, no external emissions, money maker credited with saving his business. He's so happy he's buying Log Dog a cab-back paint job for Christmas.      

Its because of the information in that thread that really got me excited about picking up some granites. Hopefully I can benefit as much as your friends Log Dog! 

Edited by ivanuke

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TS7, I never owned my own class 8 trucks because I did the numbers and it was pretty obvious that it was more profitable to drive a truck than own it. 

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Ivanuke and Mack Technician, you're right- For a low mileage operation the overhead cost of a new truck would be crushing. I live in a rural area so a lot of the freight is ag related, for example a farmer might only run 10,000 miles a year with their grain truck to the elevator. On the other hand, theres a good sized fleet here that hauls feed 24/7/365, they put on the miles quick and trade their trucks off before they're 5 years old. They have a food grade tanker operation too, one of their subcontractors is running a 6x2 lift axle Anthem that's getting 9 MPG!

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Life rewards folks who are good at math, and I'll credit that, but also make sure your including all the variables in your math equation...…

Anybody got a number on how much fuel goes out the 7th injector if an MP8? I did a lifetime average on our little CAT 9.3 liter and it was about 1,600 gallons of diesel. That 1,600 gallons produced no power, only heat for the emissions system DPF regeneration. I appreciate CAT software for it's honesty, Volvo software doesn't want to talk about it. 

On the flip side, the final is eating 7th injector fuel PLUS making you buy DEF.

Now the DPF free 4-5 tier machines are eating 10-14% DEF. For every 100 gallons of fuel you burn tack on $69.83 at todays DEF price for those units.  

On tier 3 you'll never figure out how much the filthy exhaust gas consumption steals in the way of potential cylinder pressure loss...………..but much easier to adjust for. You just have to get all the exhaust going back out of the engine instead of into it.

Road salt needs to eat. Days coming when all trucks will be clean diesel or CNG, for now you can still use old stuff profitably.

:SMOKIE-LFT::SMOKIE-RT:

Edited by Mack Technician
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I don't get into the details that much, I look at the results. Several big fleets have been pooling their data and reporting it via the North American Council for Freight Efficiency (NACFE). They report that fuel mileage was around 6 MPG before the 2007 emissions requirements and took a hit until the 2010 emissions regulations. With most of those 2007 and previous emissions standards trucks now flushed out of their fleets fuel mileage is now up to around 7 MPG. They track repair costs too, and while their was a rise with the 2007 emissions trucks those costs came back down with the 2010 emissions trucks. So looks like the 2010 and later trucks get MPG as good as the pre-2007 trucks and the repair costs are no higher.

Looking at another pool of data from the hundred truck or so fleet that Joel Morrow of Ploger has been posting about online, their Volvo fleet with the odd Mack is seeing better MPG and less emissions problems from the latest generation of Volvo engines that use Common Rail fuel injection. They've also learned a lot about the care and feeding of emissions systems, for example they're replacing less DPFs since they started preemptively cleaning them before they triggered an alert.  

As for DEF use, it's all over the map... At 28k miles I just had to buy my 2nd $8 jug to feed my 2015 TDI, so I don't worry much about it. Gets the same 40s MPG as my 2003 TDI and both were an improvement from the high 30s of the 2013 that tried to slide by with no SCR and was doing way too many regens.

Like the auto emission controls that everyone struggled with in the 70s and has now forgotten about, the manufacturers are getting better at it and the inventories of rebuildable pre-2007 engines are dwindling, never mind the numbers of rust free trucks to put them in. We're near a decade into SCR, 13 years into DPFs, a couple decades into electronic engine controls, and there will soon be no way back.

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