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About TomNGina

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    Full Member
  • Birthday December 23

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  • Location
    North Texas
  • Interests
    HDT, Fulltime, Traveling the slow road to enjoy what this country has to offer.

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  1. TomNGina

    Brake controller

    I would check out the direct link but I have a GearMaster 2 already using the computer port. Now with the Hays controller being hooked to the air can I use the manual air lever to apply the brakes on the trailer instead of using the controller itself if it is hooked into the trailer air side? Thank you everyone for your help.......
  2. TomNGina

    Brake controller

    Thank you for the information will check this out if my options of picking it up close fall through.
  3. TomNGina

    Brake controller

  4. TomNGina

    Overheard at the dump station

    Damned I was hoping no one saw me when I did that.....LOL
  5. TomNGina

    Brake controller

    Hi all, I have a question about brake controllers and really don't have time to dig into the sight for research. Our 1999 Volvo Gen 1 VNL 610 came with a Hensley brake controller and I am running disc brakes on our 5th wheel which are electric over hydraulic. The brake controller I have on the truck has a problem where it will not hold a steady voltage causing the the trailer brakes to pulsate. I have a Prodigy 3 controller that is in my pickup I can use. Can I just transfer it instead of purchasing new? Could I ask y'all for some guidance if this will work or if I need to head in another direction. I did put a resistor in the system to try to stabilize the voltage and amps to no avail. Just trying to save some cash as my budget is starting to tighten up for the next few months. Thanks in advance for your help........ Tom
  6. TomNGina

    Trip From Hermosa SD to Ft. Collins CO

    Like Fire Guy said above The hill out of Hot Springs is a pretty good climb but it has a passing lane as most of the West roads do. I lived in Hot Springs for 25 years so have a pretty good idea of the area. One of the routes that I used to take for a little mix and some scenic views is the same route as Fireguy put up but west out of Lusk I always liked to turn South on 270 out of Manville towards Guernsey then West very nice drive get into pines much like the Black Hills down there and hardly any traffic no cell phone service maybe one radio channel if you need to know what the cattle markets are doing for sure. As with anywhere out West you are in the front range of the Rockies and there will be hills. Also with any Hwy out there the road does heave doesn't matter what hwy you are on so watch those ooppdy doos..... Drive on and enjoy the journey as well as the destination. So if you do go this route you will go through Edgemont which is the Northern route for the BNSF trains to get to the coal fields, When you go through Lusk and head West that is the Union Pacific route to the coal fields and if you decide to go through Guernsey that is the Southern route for the BNSF to get to the coal fields. Not that that I am a rail fan but I have worked all those routes on the trains over the years.
  7. TomNGina

    New gear ratio

    Blue, I wanted to have the truck run easier at the higher speed limits that we have without running the truck at the higher RPM's, 14,500 at 65 MPH, it was was running before my change up. Now at 65 MPH the engine is running at 1325 RPM my gross weight is at 35,600 k. I noticed the truck seems to really like that range and did not have any problem climbing any hill big or small, at 65 it really digs in and gets it done. Climbing the hill out of the Mississippi Valley at Winona, MN I had to drop to ninth because the truck in front was slowing down to much. Then on I-35 climbing the big hill over the Arbuckles, in OK, I went up that at 65 never had to think about down shifting in fact I gave it more throttle to see what would happen to find I could climb my speed with no problem. I am not an expert but I do believe that the truck really likes this new ratio. I was disappointed a little with the mileage at 9.8 but then I bucked a very bad head wind 30 MPH plus most of the trip from WI to TX. Got into numerous severe thunder storms with 50-60 MPH gusts. That is where the truck shined though the gusts you could feel when hey hit, most of the time my slowing down to 50 MPH when it got bad, but felt very stable much better than my old 1 ton would have ever done. Time will tell but over all so far I am happy I made the extra investment around 1900 with the speeodo re calibration at the dealer. Still being under 27,500 over all total invested so far and pretty much done. I feel I would not loose anything if I would sell the truck today. But for the long term plan I still believe that I made the right decision in getting this project finished. I feel that the motor being older I am giving it a break in lowering the overall RPM at cruising speed. If I need to run 70 I can without taxing it at all now but then I do not pull my 5er faster than 65 consistently, knowing the extra stress on it, is not good for it. Only time will tell but so far so good. I did take it to a Volvo dealer and they reprogrammed the computer perimeter to my new gear ratio and tire size 125.00 bucks. About the tire size I am running 295/75R22.5 tires and bought them before I left town with the truck from AZ to TX at the time of purchase the old tires being 10-12 yrs old. Being new to the HDT group it is still a learning curve about all of the options available when it came to this subject.
  8. TomNGina

    New gear ratio

    Took my initial trip 304 miles combination of 55 and 65 MPH roads truck by itself. Burned around 21 gal on primarily river grade to and from the city and through small town driving. 14 MPG verse 12.5 I am very happy so far.. This week time to hook up and head for home, 950 miles will be the true test. If I can get 11-12 on my return towing it will be as expected and couldn't be happier.
  9. TomNGina

    New gear ratio

    OK, here are answers to some of the questions or thoughts asked and conveyed. Changing the ratio is what I would call a plug and play set up. It is the front portion (pumpkin) swap out of the rear axle the pumpkin part is custom geared and pre-adjusted with a core charge refundable at the return of your old pumpkin. Pull the axles out 6 inches, drop the drive line, unbolt and drop the old pumpkin clean up the old seal material and lay a new bead of black silicone for gasket. And reverse the process. Since my truck was singled I only needed to do it to one axle. Also because it is a manual transmission it is a simple process I didn't have to worry about the computer being done at the same time. The speedometer is off on the truck is 6 MPH slow so at 55 on the truck it is 61 on my GPS. This truck is my retirement space for the next 7-10 years so I am willing to put a little more money into it, to make it exactly what I need for my situation. As far doing the work myself? I gave a father and son a couple of hundred bucks to do it for me since I am working everyday they provided me a loner car to drive for the weekend. If you have the place and tools you can do this for around 1500-1600 bucks add 100-200 bucks if you change out the rear end fluid at the same time. I had already changed mine out and reused to oil I just replaced. That oil is pretty expensive unless you can find a place that can sell it by the amount you need because it only comes in the smallest quantity 5 gallon buckets at 189.00 bucks. Our truck was taken out of commercial service way back in 2005 at 475,000 miles. I bought it with 598,900 miles on it and now have 603,000 miles. Today the computer perimeters are gong to be changed to match the transmission output, rear end and tire size. Since this is a Gen 1 truck it took a while to find a place that can make the changes because the truck is almost 19 years old and the old software is becoming limited availability. My total cost of this project has been 1800 bucks whether this has been a cost effective decision only time will tell and hopefully on the long term will repay it self in a number of areas of savings, wear and tear on the motor and hopefully fuel cost. For sure the truck likes it now!! When I set the cruise at 65 it just purrs like big old fat and happy cat. My thought when I did this was to not ever be in a race to get anywhere but also not be a hindrance on the road. I feel that towing the max speed should be around 55 to 65 anything more you just beat up the house to much and the safety factor on the trailer tire ratings for towing is usually 65 max.
  10. TomNGina

    New gear ratio

    Well I have changed up the gear ratio on our 1999 Volvo 610, Detroit D60 12.7, Eaton 10 speed Manual Trans.. This truck was built with a 3.70 ratio and at 65 MPH it ran at 1500-1600 RPM. The GearmasterII in the truck showed the engine running at way above the mileage sweet zone. I wanted to lower the RPM range to around 1300 at 65 to not only keep from pushing the motor hard but also be able to not be a traffic hazard on the higher speed limit roads we encounter since the 55 MPH federal laws changed. I replaced the gear ratio with a 3.25 ratio and all I can say is, it has been a perfect choice from my initial drive tonight . At 65 the truck is running at 1325 RPM. I am hoping to not only add longevity but get better mileage running at the best RPM for engine efficiency cruising at HWY speed. Has anyone else done this to an older truck and what were your results so I can understand more what to expect? Since i didn't have to spend a lot on the truck initially I have done some things to it to bring the truck up to higher standards since it is 19 years old. A rebuilt air compressor, governor, Air dryer, air junction boxes other air fittings, Shocks, all fluids flushed and changed out to have a flat line for my future. The best part is I am still under budget of what I planned to spend and tens of thousands less than a new to me pickup that could handle our 17,000 pound Redwood 5er.. Also is there any other preventative maintenance I may have missed? Thanks in advance for any suggestion anyone may have that i may not know about........ Tom
  11. TomNGina

    Price of Diesel fuel

    The best part of our rigs is we have the option to pick and choose areas to fill!! My plan when I finish up my work in Wisconsin is to top off the tank and head home to Texas before I fill up again. Should "Save Big Money" and we do not even have a Menard's that far South. This makes the decision to change up the rear end ratio from 3.70 to 3.25 a no brainer for the long term. Since our HDT is going to be our long term retirement we will save the cost of the ratio change in 25,000-30,000 short miles. Gas Buddy and any other Apps out there cannot compensate for the 10 cent rise in fuel just hours before your planned stop happens. Had that one happen to me on the way up in Des Moines, IA a couple of weeks ago. Got to the station and the price had jumped 10 cents. When I asked the clerk what happened he told me I missed the cheaper price by 2 hours, Go figure....... LOL I still believe that our tanks maybe bigger and cost more to fill but the advantages far out weigh the having to look for a station every 250 miles like my old 1 ton that got the same mileage.......😊
  12. TomNGina

    Train horns

    This subject cracks me up..... You know how many times I am cruising along the Hwy 287 Ft Worth to Amarillo TX 60 MPH on the train and hear these Train Horns from 150 yards away? I would like to have some quieter ones someday I do not need a full 152 decibels. After listening to the damned horn 30,000+ times a year for 39 yrs kind of tired of it......LOL Whatever you do don't get caught with the real thing many are stolen and it is a federal crime.
  13. TomNGina

    FB, HDT did I miss something

    I use all sights for what they are intended to be. Maybe I am more of a Lurker since I am still so new and climbing the learning curve. But as I learn about my truck and everything about it with the help of those that have shared their journey. It is here that I turn to the most and with the HDT pushing 64500 posts in the Escapee's forums pretty big fountain of information and accomplishment. I would post more pictures here but it is so much easier on the social media sights to post. Why because I am not restricted to file size and the ease of using the phone to accomplish what I would like to show. The phone is my computer, storage device, and camera all in one...... oh yea, I did say phone didn't I? It doesn't matter what subject I bring up there will always be someone more in tune and will correct me if I am wrong. Do I get butthurt? Nah just use the constructive criticism to find the real truth whether they are right or I find out they are wrong. All avenues of information are only as good as those who participate and everyone has something to offer if you are willing to keep an open mind and listen to what you read. Age, race, cultural area, religion, everyone has something I can use to be a better, smarter person if I give them a chance.
  14. TomNGina

    Funny how things change

    I found the same thing with our little truck 3500 DRW our Great Dane had to be on medication panting, drooling, hyperventilating. Just knowing that great big trailer was coming through the window after her. My wife shakes her head when I told her of the idea of an HDT thinking I was nuts. Now after our first trip Dog is off meds and after a few time climbs into the rig. She goes right up the ramp taking her place on the huge elevated dog bed happy as can be. To top it off, my wife saying she sure wished we could take a big trip right now......... Yes!!! Funny how things change.
  15. Good morning everyone!! Not sure if anyone is in the market for some great priced parts but eventually we all need to replace something on our HDT's. The site below is an eBay store I ran across and they have a website also that you can get a phone number and call if they do not have what you need listed in the store. http://stores.ebay.com/REI-Truck-Parts?_trksid=p2047675.l2563 Being many of us have older equipment and myself being a preventative maintenance person I ordered a newly rebuilt compressor and air dryer for my rig. When I ordered the parts I needed to update my air system I figure I saved somewhere between 300 and 500 bucks.