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 > New Ram 5500 Build

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n0arp

FT

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Posted: 09/04/21 10:39am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We were running over 13K on the rear axle of a 2019 Ram 3500. Despite it handling the load well (with mods), we knew it wasn't responsible to continue with that rig and have spent the last few months looking for a F-550 or Ram 5500.

[image]

For those interested: SuperSprings (4600lb pack) and 245/70R19.5 tires worked wonders on the 3500 with that load.

The market for trucks in general is insane right now, and finding a high-trim 5500 was next to impossible. The wait for ordering one more or less ruled that out.

We ended up finding a 2021 Ram 5500 Limited, 84CA, Cummins, 4x4, with most of the options we wanted in a new truck. It's Granite Crystal with Indigo/Frost interior. Bought it sight-unseen from a dealer 1700mi away from our current location, and had it shipped to us. Has 74gal of fuel, and 4.89 gears.

[image]
[image]
[image]

This week it's getting a Ranch Hand Sport front bumper, 17.5K winch, 11'4" flatbed, and 255/70R22.5" Hercules DT320 tires on 22.5" direct-bolt wheels (Alcoa style, rated for 6K each). That's roughly a 37" tall tire with a fairly aggressive A/T tread. Effective gear ratio with those tires will be around 4.27, or halfway between the optional 4.10 and 4.44 gears.

I'll post updates to the build in this thread, but it should be a beast when done. I decided not to go the popular super single route, because in my opinion it has more tradeoffs than benefits. We never had any issue getting anywhere we wanted with the old truck, which ran 245/70R19.5 Cooper RM253s up front and Continental Terra HD3s in the rear as duals.

We boondock extensively with both the truck camper posted above, and a 39' fifth wheel that has extensive modifications. We also flat tow a 5700lb Jeep Wrangler when hauling the truck camper.

* This post was last edited 09/04/21 01:47pm by n0arp *   View edit history


2021 Ram 5500 Limited 84CA Cummins 4x4 w/ flatbed
2020 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon 2.0T (follow or TC toad)
2015 Keystone Alpine 3730FB 2925W/22.8kWh, 30K multi-split
2016 Arctic Fox 1140 WB 1800W/11.4kWh

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North Bend

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Posted: 09/04/21 10:47am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Looking forward to seeing the build and tires!


'16 F550 CC, 4x4 with Link Ultraride air suspension, '18 AF 1150. Just so we can play with our snowmobiles, dirt bikes and fishing boat. And new 20' tag along...kayaks, bikes, mc's and extra water and food!!


n0arp

FT

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Posted: 09/04/21 10:52am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I should add for anyone interested in F-550/5500 trucks that I found that the 2021 F-550 doesn't even have LED headlights as an option. It's 2021! and those should be standard. There were a lot of other frills - like adaptive cruise for instance - that can't be optioned and those options are ultimately why we stayed with Ram.

Though I generally don't worry too much about the CP4 pumps, it's a nice bonus that when I popped the hood on this 5500 I found a CP3 as rumored.

mike/kellie

northern calif.

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Posted: 09/04/21 11:56am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Are you going to have boxes built against the headboard? You should have some space there although I'm not familiar as to how your camper drops in the back. I'd like to see the clearance inside the front wheel wells with the new rims. Sounds like a nice project.
I bought my 5500 site unseen after it sat for over a year. That population did not like the color! Ram only ran it for maybe 2 years.


2015 Host Mammoth triple slide w/ TorkLift Fastguns
2015 Ram 5500 SLT cab & chassis with Douglass 9' utility body

n0arp

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Posted: 09/04/21 11:58am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

mike/kellie wrote:

Are you going to have boxes built against the headboard? You should have some space there although I'm not familiar as to how your camper drops in the back. I'd like to see the clearance inside the front wheel wells with the new rims. Sounds like a nice project.
I bought my 5500 site unseen after it sat for over a year. That population did not like the color! Ram only ran it for maybe 2 years.


The camper will sit 14.5" back from the headache rack. I'll use that to store the spare tire, 2000W generator, and fuel tank - so no boxes. I'll take photos of the clearance, but talked to several people including a guy who runs these exact wheels and same tire size (different tire) and they clear fine and never rub.

Here is a 2020 with the same wheels and different tires, but in the same size:

[image]

jimh425

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Posted: 09/04/21 12:34pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

That’s going to be a tall rig. Congrats!


'10 Ford F-450, 6.4, 4.30, 4x4, 14,500 GVWR, '06 Host Rainer 950 Dbl Slide, Torklift Talon tiedowns, Glow Steps, and Fastguns. Bilstein 4600s, Firestone Air Bags, Toyo M655 225/19.5 Gs, Curt front hitch, Energy Suspension bump stops.


n0arp

FT

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Posted: 09/04/21 12:41pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

jimh425 wrote:

That’s going to be a tall rig. Congrats!


I actually measured this morning -- we should lose 3" with this rig! That'll be around 12'9". The flatbed on the old truck was really far off the frame rails due to it being a bed delete. The deck height was 48" unloaded. This truck should be about 45" (35.5" to the top of the rear rails (highest point), around 2.5" additional height from the tires, and 7-1/8" for the flatbed, but might squat less -- so it could end up a wash. Should be far under 13'6" regardless.

Thanks!

n0arp

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Posted: 09/04/21 01:06pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

As some of you may know, the cab and chassis trucks are derated. The 3500 HO/AISIN I had was rated at 400hp/1000tq with 3.73 gears, and this truck is rated for 360hp/800tq with 4.89 gears. I figured the gears would make up for most of the decrease, though I'll end up with a 4.27 gear ratio after the tires.

Anyway, after driving this truck a bit, I feel the difference is negligible. The power comes in lower in the power band with the way it's tuned, and feels every bit as strong with the old truck, at least unloaded. I think between the tuning and less restrictive torque management, it's a wash and should still be close even with 4.27s. That's all based on unloaded impressions, though. The concern seems silly, since 360hp/800lb-ft is still a whole lot.

Our fifth wheel hasn't been weighed recently, but probably comes in around 17K. Truck camper is 7K-ish. And we tow a 6K Jeep behind it. Should be well within the truck's limits.

* This post was edited 09/04/21 01:25pm by n0arp *

Lwiddis

Monterey, California

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Posted: 09/04/21 02:58pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You bought a gooooood looking truck!


Winnebago 2101DS TT & 2020 Chevy Silverado 1500 LTZ Z71, 300 watt solar-parallel & MPPT, Trojan T-125s. TALL flag pole. Prefer boondocking, USFS, COE, BLM, NPS, TVA, state camps. Bicyclist14 yr. Army vet-11B40 then 11A - (MOS 1542 & 1560) IOBC & IOAC grad


cewillis

Tucson, az, usa

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Posted: 09/04/21 05:32pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Quote:

should be a beast

Major understatement. (in a good way)


Cal


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