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Thread: 10 MPG in a Tractor Trailer?

  1. #16
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    Re: 10 MPG in a Tractor Trailer?

    Quote Originally Posted by zorry View Post
    Two questions:
    1) I get pretty much the same mpg at 55 as I do 65. Would this be because I am not working the truck hard ?500 hp D Unit. Most loads lighter than B units haul .
    2) Every dealer I've talked to said there'd be no mpg gain by decreasing the hp. This defies my old school thinking.
    I agree with the the dealer. There will probably be no mpg gain by decreasing the hp. If anything zorry you will probably lose mpg by decreasing the hp. Not that hp really means anything because it is a fictional number made up based on torque. Which I don't really understand myself because decreasing the hp doesn't decrease the amount of torque a engine puts out. getting away from the subject, sorry.

    Zorry, if your are getting the same mpg at 65 as 55 then I am going to guess (Id even be willing to put some $$$ up) that you have a CAT engine. These engines could idle for 24 hours straight and average 5.5 gallons per hour. Doesn't seem to matter if you are 80K or 50K, running at 45 mph or 75 mph, 5.5 mpg is the normal. Especially if you have a C15 or C16. Once you start getting into the marine applications like a C18 or C19 then you will start seeing 10 mpg in a truck. Obviously this isn't a common thing but I personally know one person setting up a C18 2000hp engine in his truck because a buddy of his has it and it getting 9 mpg running around town with only about 20% highway miles. I'd call his bluff but my friend isn't the kind of guy to spend $60K on an engine just because he heard someone talking.

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  4. #17
    Senior Member zorry's Avatar
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    Re: 10 MPG in a Tractor Trailer?

    Nope, Volvo.
    OOIDA # 463 ( Yeah, an old fart ). Expediting....It beats working for a living

  5. 17,614678,58647,7
  6. #18
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    Re: 10 MPG in a Tractor Trailer?

    aaah, thought I had that one for sure. Heard good and bad things from Volvo drivers on mileage. From what I gather some trucks just didn't get that good of mileage, almost like it was just that particular motors thing. Still, I very much dislike CAT!

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  8. #19
    Senior Member zorry's Avatar
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    Re: 10 MPG in a Tractor Trailer?

    Dislike Cats ?
    We could start a pretty large club of people that dis-like Cats over here.
    I bought new Cats in '88 & 90.
    The 90 killed me on Cats. Have bought 8 trucks since the 90 and never even considered a Cat.
    OOIDA # 463 ( Yeah, an old fart ). Expediting....It beats working for a living

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  10. #20
    Senior Member rollincoal's Avatar
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    Re: 10 MPG in a Tractor Trailer?

    I can push near 7.0 mpg in my truck if I drive like a senior citizen. As it is I routinely see 6.1-6.5 mpg. I tend to drive the speed limit most times. When I've got plenty of time in a 70mph zone I'll keep it around 65. Although you may see me push it up to and over 70 from time to time. I have probably the worst motor CAT ever produced, a 2003 bridge engine. It was the last single turbo they ever put out before the ACERT twin turbo C15's hit the scene in '04 year model trucks. When I got this truck in stock form it was all I could do to rarely swing 5.8 mpg out of it... ...more often than not it averaged 5.0 mpg. After installing a good non-wastegated turbo and tuning the horsepower up to 550 from 475 along with a few other tweaks, this motor gets excellent fuel mileage.. ..for what it is. If it's driven, tuned, and maintained properly a C15 or C16 CAT will surprise you the kind of economy it gets.
    Farm2Fleet Trucking

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  12. #21
    Moderator TeamCaffee's Avatar
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    Re: 10 MPG in a Tractor Trailer?

    We had a CAT in our first truck and we spent a lot of time and effort to get good fuel mileage. It has been a lot easier to start with a DD13 inside an aerodynamic Cascadia designed to get good fuel mileage from day 1.
    Independent Contractor Leased Exclusively to FedEx Custom Critical

    You cannot hang out with NEGATIVE people and expect to live a POSITIVE life.



    One of the Team Run Smart Pros

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  14. #22
    Moderator TeamCaffee's Avatar
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    Re: 10 MPG in a Tractor Trailer?

    Part 2 of Henry Albert's life in the slow lane on Team Run Smart.

    I found it interesting how his E-Coast feature works more to his benefit at these slower speeds.

    Team Run Smart - Pro Henry Albert
    Independent Contractor Leased Exclusively to FedEx Custom Critical

    You cannot hang out with NEGATIVE people and expect to live a POSITIVE life.



    One of the Team Run Smart Pros

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  16. #23
    Senior Member rollincoal's Avatar
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    Re: 10 MPG in a Tractor Trailer?

    There is an independent owner on another forum who has a 3406E model CAT in a 2000 model 770 Volvo. This driver does power only loads and is getting close to 9mpg out of that truck. He never drives faster than 58mph, never idles, and has several the mods. Yeah, I know.... He has IFTA quarterly reports backing it up, among other things. :-D
    Farm2Fleet Trucking

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  18. #24
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    Re: 10 MPG in a Tractor Trailer?

    Zorry, here's my take on question 1. Kevin Rutherford has said for years if you get the same mileage at 65 as 55 theres something wrong with the engine or charge air cooler. I dont always agree with that if you have to drop a gear and raise RPM you will not do better, physics don't lie, it takes fuel to increase RPM.
    As for question 2, again physics don't lie, it takes fuel to increase HP. Bruce Malenson once said it takes 186 HP to keep 80,000 lbs. rolling down the road. You are at or below 40,000. The study Bruce refered to was done I think in the late 70's or early 80's. Since then tire technology, oil, gear sets, and engines have all leaned toward getting the truck down the road easier. The loads aren't any heavier and the mountains aren't any higher. So i would have to disagree with the dealers lower HP should increase mileage. Dealers sell what they think drivers want, and drivers buy that because they typicaly don't #1 have an option and #2 don't do research and talk to engineers rather than salesmen. I will say the excessive HP feels fun to drive but i don't want to have to feed it. I would rather spend the extra money on my family and myself.

    You are dispatched at an average of 45 MPH, we have always run less than 60 MPH and have never been late with a lifetime average on this truck of 52 MPH. Going slower is less stressfull and we always get there on time if not early. Thats my opinion and you can't argue with physics, they will win every time!
    scottm4211 and zorry like this.

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  20. #25
    Senior Member zorry's Avatar
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    Re: 10 MPG in a Tractor Trailer?

    We generally run 60. This week running faster may mean delivering a day earlier. If so, we'll step it up. If the day earlier is not an option we'll mosey along.
    Either scenario we keep the left door closed and get on over there.
    TeamCaffee likes this.
    OOIDA # 463 ( Yeah, an old fart ). Expediting....It beats working for a living

  21. 25,614812,58647,7
  22. #26
    Senior Member Tennesseahawk's Avatar
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    Re: 10 MPG in a Tractor Trailer?

    I've always found that running slower (55) is more tiresome. Driving 65-70, to me, forces me to be more alert.
    Freedom is free of the need to be free. - Free your mind and your *** will follow.

    When some wild-eyed, eight-foot-tall maniac grabs your neck, taps the back of your favorite head up against the barroom wall, looks you crooked in the eye and asks you if ya paid your dues, you just stare that big sucker right back in the eye, and you remember what ol' Jack Burton always says at a time like that: "Have ya paid your dues, Jack?" "Yessir, the check is in the mail."Jack Burton



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  24. #27
    Moderator TeamCaffee's Avatar
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    Re: 10 MPG in a Tractor Trailer?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tennesseahawk View Post
    I've always found that running slower (55) is more tiresome. Driving 65-70, to me, forces me to be more alert.
    We did a fuel mileage test last year with this truck and I found that speeding up I was more tense. At the end of the day my shoulders muscles were in knots and my neck always hurt. 58 works really well most of the time for stress and for fuel mileage.

    I know Henry does not like 55 and is ready to step it back up to his customary 65 mpg
    Independent Contractor Leased Exclusively to FedEx Custom Critical

    You cannot hang out with NEGATIVE people and expect to live a POSITIVE life.



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  25. 27,614829,58647,7
  26. #28
    Senior Member zorry's Avatar
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    Re: 10 MPG in a Tractor Trailer?

    How did the increased speed affect the Caffecadia ?

    My old school training was 1 mph lost 1/10 mpg. Or 10 mph lost 1 full mpg.
    OOIDA # 463 ( Yeah, an old fart ). Expediting....It beats working for a living

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  28. #29
    Moderator TeamCaffee's Avatar
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    Re: 10 MPG in a Tractor Trailer?

    I did a series of blogs on how our fuel mileage changed when we kicked the speed up with the conclusion "It Depends" In great conditions, flat roads, axle up we could get good fuel mileage with out the "perfect" conditions our fuel mileage suffered.

    I did a blog series with this one being the first:
    Day 1 of the fuel mileage test
    Independent Contractor Leased Exclusively to FedEx Custom Critical

    You cannot hang out with NEGATIVE people and expect to live a POSITIVE life.



    One of the Team Run Smart Pros

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