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Life after the Eagle is gone

This forum was created so that members can document their projects that are not bus related. Most any subject is acceptable: car/truck, tractor, machine restoration, wood working, etc.
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User avatar
beltguy
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 2563
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 4:39 am
FMCA #: F246286
Bus Model: 1985 Eagle 10 with Series 60 and Eaton AutoShift 10 speed transmission (SOLD)
Location: Evergreen, CO
Contact:

Life after the Eagle is gone

Post by beltguy »

Hi all. Wasn't sure where to start this thread, so I decided to use this neglected forum :D

After we sold the Eagle, we purchased a 2005 Dodge Ram truck and a 2014 26ft Passport trailer.
truck and trailer in Cherokee, NC.jpg
When we decided to put the bus on the market, I began thinking about our future options. That caused me to focus on certain years of Dodge truck. The main reason was because of the Cummins 5.9 engine. The heritage of this engine dates back to the agricultural market decades ago and it has a very strong track record. I focused on 2003 to 2007 model years because that is rated as the best years for the engine and before all the emissions crap.

I searched all over the county via the internet. Besides the model years, my requirements included: crew cab, 4WD, and 6 speed manual transmission with a strong goal of low miles. All of my searches only revealed trucks with tons of miles. As the bus was barely on it's way, I did another search and found just what I wanted in Boulder Colorado (with 98K miles!). I grabbed my son-in-law (big Dodge/Cummins fan) and we went for a test drive. By the time I got back to the dealer (Toyota dealer) the sales person said he had no idea what was going on but he was getting calls from all over the country :D

I had planned to include Pat on the truck decision, but with the above comment I quickly agreed to purchase the truck.

When it came to the trailer, I left the decision completely up to Pat. One of our granddaughters joined the search and created a spreadsheet (updated each day) with all of the trailers she found on the internet that came close to what Pat was looking for. She went with us to each viewing and when we found this trailer she and Pat said it was almost exactly what they were looking for.

We are currently about 2000 miles into a 4200 mile trip back to the east coast. This trip will include a couple of 2 day teaching sessions. More about the truck and trailer in future posts.

Jim
Jim Shepherd
Evergreen, CO
'85 Eagle 10 with Series 60 & Eaton AutoShift 10 speed transmission SOLD
2005 Dodge 2500 with 5.9 Cummins and 6 speed manual 2014 Passport 26 foot trailer
Bus Project pages: http://beltguy.com/Bus_Project/busproject.htm
Blog: http://beltguy.com/blog/
Email: jim@eaglesinternational.net NOTE this email box is only for general correspondence and not technical advice
User avatar
DoubleEagle
Club Member
Club Member
Posts: 260
Joined: Wed Feb 14, 2018 9:26 pm
Bus Model: 1975 Model 05 Eagle
1982 Model 10 Eagle
1984 Model 10 Eagle
1994 Model 15-45 Eagle
Location: Dayton, Ohio

Re: Life after the Eagle is gone

Post by DoubleEagle »

Jim,

That should be a nice combination for traveling, your total length should be around 45 ft., but it will bend in the middle unlike most buses. The 5.9 Cummins is a good engine. I've always preferred Ford Diesel pickups (I have two), but I recently got a Dakota 4X4 with V8 that I really enjoy. Keep on top of maintenance, the body and systems will have things to watch for such as steering linkage, ball joints. The linkage for the four-wheel drive has rubber grommets that hold the links together that deteriorate in time.
Walter
Dayton, Ohio
1975 Silvereagle Model 05, 8V71, 4 speed Spicer
1982 Eagle Model 10, 6V92, 5 speed Spicer
1984 Eagle Model 10, 6V92 w/Jacobs, Allison HT740
1994 Eagle Model 15-45, Series 60 w/Jacobs, Allison HT746
User avatar
rusty
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 1518
Joined: Thu Oct 09, 2008 3:22 pm
FMCA #: F341087
Bus Model: 1972 05 completed 2003
1994 15/45 in progress
Location: Johnstown Co.

Re: Life after the Eagle is gone

Post by rusty »

Hope you get to see some color changes. Have a safe trip
Wayne
User avatar
beltguy
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 2563
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 4:39 am
FMCA #: F246286
Bus Model: 1985 Eagle 10 with Series 60 and Eaton AutoShift 10 speed transmission (SOLD)
Location: Evergreen, CO
Contact:

Re: Life after the Eagle is gone

Post by beltguy »

Thanks Wayne. We are seeing a bit of color and hope to get better colors in the next couple of weeks.

Walter, I lusted after Ford diesels when IHC built the 7.3 engine for Ford. The next few generations (Ford defined or Ford manufactured) really were not great engines. I suspect that they are good today, but it is really hard to beat the track record of the Cummins engine.

You touched on a couple of issues with Dodges (steering box issues and ball joint issues). The previous owner of my truck really added a bunch of great aftermarket products including the reinforced steering box hardware (looks really robust to me). Right now the steering is good, but I know that I will be replacing the ball joints in the near future (not a huge job).

This truck is such a dream to drive. The six speed manual transmission has great gear splits and the torque of the engine from 1000 rpm up makes driving the really twisty roads here along the Blue Ridge Parkway very easy. With the trailer attached it is also very easy to drive from a power standpoint.

I was a bit worried about driving the truck in stop-and-go traffic. Fortunately my "stock left knee" (as opposed to my bionic right knee) :D :shock: is holding up well and it is has not been a problem.

Jim
Jim Shepherd
Evergreen, CO
'85 Eagle 10 with Series 60 & Eaton AutoShift 10 speed transmission SOLD
2005 Dodge 2500 with 5.9 Cummins and 6 speed manual 2014 Passport 26 foot trailer
Bus Project pages: http://beltguy.com/Bus_Project/busproject.htm
Blog: http://beltguy.com/blog/
Email: jim@eaglesinternational.net NOTE this email box is only for general correspondence and not technical advice
Eagle obsessed
Posts: 319
Joined: Thu Jun 14, 2018 11:37 am
Bus Model: 1968 model 05 Eagle series 60 and B500
Location: McCook NE

Re: Life after the Eagle is gone

Post by Eagle obsessed »

Glad to see you on the road again. Must feel good. I like Walter am a ford fan but I think any Cummins under 6.7 liters are great engines. lately ive been thinking about getting a 12 valve mostly just to annoy the neighbors. (want to put one in my dentside) which maybe i should make a project page for that to liven things up around here lol
1968 05 Series 60/B500 swap 2019-2021
1971 05 8v71 Spicer 4 speed parts bus
User avatar
beltguy
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 2563
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 4:39 am
FMCA #: F246286
Bus Model: 1985 Eagle 10 with Series 60 and Eaton AutoShift 10 speed transmission (SOLD)
Location: Evergreen, CO
Contact:

Re: Life after the Eagle is gone

Post by beltguy »

I wanted to update this a bit.

We finished our trip with no significant problems. The truck and trailer did well -- over 5,000 miles. We got a bit less than 11 MPG which was a bit disappointing but hit lots of windy days.

As we traveled, we talked about what we missed with the trailer compared to the Eagle. There were lots of things we missed. First of all was the water/gray/black tank sizes. They are very small in our trailer. Next was the wonderful infrastructure of the bus (inverter, generator, Aqua-Hot, etc). Lastly we really missed the comfortable seating in the bus.

So, what did we not miss. The main thing was the exposure to very expensive repairs. Some failures would have committed the bus to boat anchor status with our financial situation :o :D . While we did not have any problems with our insurance, we always dreaded the possibility of being cancelled because of the fact that it was originally a bus.

The main thing we did not miss was seeing the bus sitting and the systems getting old. I am so glad that it went to a person who seems to appreciate it.

I am addressing the issue of not being able to boondock. The trailer came with a converter (I hate them and this one did not work). I have installed a decent inverter. It is not fully wired yet, but it does charge the battery very nicely. I will be upgrading the 30 gallon water supply with a second tank that will double the capacity.

Of course, the added benefit is that I now have a truck that I had lusted for :lol:

Jim
Jim Shepherd
Evergreen, CO
'85 Eagle 10 with Series 60 & Eaton AutoShift 10 speed transmission SOLD
2005 Dodge 2500 with 5.9 Cummins and 6 speed manual 2014 Passport 26 foot trailer
Bus Project pages: http://beltguy.com/Bus_Project/busproject.htm
Blog: http://beltguy.com/blog/
Email: jim@eaglesinternational.net NOTE this email box is only for general correspondence and not technical advice
User avatar
DoubleEagle
Club Member
Club Member
Posts: 260
Joined: Wed Feb 14, 2018 9:26 pm
Bus Model: 1975 Model 05 Eagle
1982 Model 10 Eagle
1984 Model 10 Eagle
1994 Model 15-45 Eagle
Location: Dayton, Ohio

Re: Life after the Eagle is gone

Post by DoubleEagle »

beltguy wrote:
>
> We finished our trip with no significant problems. The truck and trailer
> did well -- over 5,000 miles. We got a bit less than 11 MPG which was a
> bit disappointing but hit lots of windy days.

Jim,
11 MPG is not bad considering that it might get 17 MPG when not towing anything. I had a Suburban with a 454 cu .in. gas engine pulling a 26' trailer back in the nineties that only got about 5 MPG pulling the trailer. That appeared crazy to me since my diesel Mack dump trucks fully loaded (overloaded) got an average of 5.39 MPG. That started my quest for something more practical. My first Eagle with the 8V71 got 7.5 MPG with both the main engine and the generator running, but my left knee got a workout.
Walter
Dayton, Ohio
1975 Silvereagle Model 05, 8V71, 4 speed Spicer
1982 Eagle Model 10, 6V92, 5 speed Spicer
1984 Eagle Model 10, 6V92 w/Jacobs, Allison HT740
1994 Eagle Model 15-45, Series 60 w/Jacobs, Allison HT746
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