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GMC/Chevy 4500--good/bad?

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  • raricciuti
    replied
    We have a 2006 Chevy C5500, 2WD, 19,500 GVW, 8.1L gas chassis. It's constructed as a mobile command post, 32.5' long, 102" wide. We've only had it a short time, but so far, no problems. We drove it to Pennsylvania from the middle of Iowa without any issues. Lots of power, good turning radius, nice ride with an aftermarket rear air suspension. Overall, nice truck.

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  • k1500chevy97
    replied
    Originally posted by skipatrol8
    which is better, ive heard the diesel is a bit of a slug.
    Im not sure on the new ford 6.0 diesel lots of problems from what i have heard.
    The 7.3 diesel (no longer offered) that we have in our 2002 F550 rescue (16ft ambulance style body) is enough to get it up and going and the engine has had no problems yet.

    I can tell you (from experience) the GM 6.6 duramax is anything but a slug in the medium duty trucks
    Last edited by k1500chevy97; 08-13-2006, 10:06 PM.

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  • firenresq77
    replied
    Wow......... How'd I miss this thread????????/

    We have the GMC 5500, and we love the thing. It is so much better than the Ford F550. Ours is the 2WD with the 26K GVW......... We had a similar truck on the F550 and it was already sitting on the helper springs with very little equipment on it. Now we have a bigger tank with more equipment and still have plenty of weight to spare. Turning is unbelievable compared to the Ford......... Plus the price for the GMC5500 was approx the same or slightly less/more than the Ford........

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  • skipatrol8
    replied
    which is better, ive heard the diesel is a bit of a slug.

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  • k1500chevy97
    replied
    They actually put the big block 8.1L V-8 in their medium duties (325 hp and 450tq.)

    So yes you can get it with a gasser if so desired.

    And Ford also puts a gas engine in the 550 and 450 it is the 6.8L V-10
    Last edited by k1500chevy97; 08-13-2006, 10:05 PM.

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  • skipatrol8
    replied
    gas?

    chevy doesnt do gas engines in these right? does ford put the v10 in 4/550s/

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  • chtucker
    replied
    Should add that a 5500 2wd can be speced up to 26,000GVW so that crew cab mini pumper is probably ok

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  • chtucker
    replied
    I personnally own both for plowing snow

    550 built up pickup
    5500 downsized medium duty

    4x4 550 maximum GVW is 17,950
    4x4 5500 maximum GVW is 19,500

    4x4 550 front axle GAWR 6k
    4x4 5500 front axle GAWR 8k

    Downside is gearing is 5.13 highest in 5500 vs 4.30 in 550

    Tighter turning radius in 5500

    Service from medium duty truck dealer (5500) MUCH better than Ford car dealer service on 550

    Straight frame rails: Doesn't get stuck in snow as easy....

    I won't go back to Ford after driving the 5500.

    No dents in 5500 hood from intercooler line blowing off after 6.0 overboosts

    Would I build a 5500 ambulance, probably not because of the height.

    International builds a 4200 4x4 in 19,500 GVW and 25,900 GVW... That is probably what I am going to get next.

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  • pfd3501
    replied
    for a brush truck/off road platform the GMC4500/5500 series has an advantage over the Ford series (i think?) - tire size and greater rolling footprint

    for optimium loading, I've been told by someone "in the know" that with either series of truck you have to be carefull of water tank and pump placement - with 6000# on the ford and (edited to 8000#) on the GMC5500 putting the tank up against the cab can overload the front axle, especially with the 2door models. the 4 door puts the loading back further by the added length of the cab.

    The ford, and perhaps the GMC to a greater extent are "half steps" between pickups and medium duty trucks. If you want more carrying capacity/axle/brakes than a 1 ton, but don't want to spring for a IH, Freightshaker or Pete medium chassis, they may be the ticket for you.

    In looking at an advertisement for a GMC C5500 4x4 wildland truck by Unruh, http://unruhfire.com/firetrucks.htm they state that they can get a and 3000 series Allison in the 5500. Is that a typo ?(edited to add - GMC website shows 1000RDS Rugged duty and 1000EVS emergency service allison trannies - no 3000 series shown by gmc on their website?)
    Last edited by pfd3501; 07-24-2006, 05:08 PM. Reason: GMC 5500 axle ratings

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  • skipatrol8
    replied
    excuse the glorified pick up--its just that from what i see, they share so many componets from a lighter duty truck. it seems like this truck is more prone to failure, do to somewhat inferior parts. i realize that this may not be the case, but i dont think that the 4500/5500 shares a lot with the the 3500.

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  • k1500chevy97
    replied
    Dragonfyre,
    it may be possible that we are looking towards a 6500 in addition to our current 4500 is it possible you could PM me.
    or if you have AIM contact me that way "johndeereguybgdk" (after 6 pacific for AIM)

    Thanks.

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  • k1500chevy97
    replied
    Passenger leg room is an issue with these things. driver comfort though is pretty good.
    As far as a unit feeling "top heavy" thats just too much box for the chassis.

    These medium duties are great for what they are made for IMO. I would take one in a heartbeat over a F450 or F550.

    I spend a lot of time in a 4500 and to tell you the truth it has done everything i have asked of it. I go into some tight places and it turns a circle in what was a 3pt turn with a C3500. it always has plenty of power and doesnt feel tipsy when i got a load on it.


    Another thing.. the vision all the way around these is great.
    Last edited by k1500chevy97; 07-20-2006, 01:51 AM.

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  • Weruj1
    replied
    here is a pic of the Lucas Co EMS a brand new Life Squad that went into service Tues.
    Last edited by Weruj1; 10-30-2010, 08:37 PM.

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  • Weruj1
    replied
    also seee this months Jems magazine ............Charlotte SC/NC is running 4500 4 door units as transporting units !

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  • 2004F550
    replied
    they take a while to get, we ordered a 5500 chassis in March and just recived word that it will be built on Oct. 8.....so get ready to wait

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