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What Do Ya'll Think? 1994 Dodge 1 ton
#1
I've been lookin' at this off and on for a month.

1994 Dodge 1 ton work van 360cu,  automatic,  221k, newer ladder/roof rack, original owner.

It looks like it has two recessed areas in the front bumper.  Maybe pullin' or towing points?  
IT'S RED!    I LIKE RED   Smile

It's sitting in the guys shop and doesn't look  wrecked/dented & the paint looks good
The owner sez it runs and drives great, good tires and brakes.

I'm thinking that with a 360 I should be able to drag just about anything that I'd ever want to down the road with it.  Flat roof with rack in place for a solar system.  No conversion van add ons taking up interior space, the rear ac/heat in the Safari is nice though.  The Dodge is probably big enough that I will not need a T.T..  With a roof rack and cargo carrier I sould be O.K

I spoke to a loan officer at my Credit Union last week and as long as I stay under $10,000 and 250k miles I'm good.  I told her I was looking at mid 1980s as the oldest but mainly 1990s or newer and she said the age wouldn't matter as much as the condition of the vehicle.

So what do ya'll think?
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#2
I have driven a lot of old vans for work vehicles over the years, including a '91 Dodge one-ton that I had from '06 to '11. The 360 is a good engine. It will have slightly lower gas mileage than a 3/4 ton with the same engine--on one-ton models they change the gear ratio in the differential to make it easier to pull out with a full load. The brakes and some suspension parts are a bit heavier and cost a bit more to replace. It will be a little higher off the ground--I once changed a universal joint on mine without jacking it up.

If the paint looks that good on anything that old it has likely been re-painted. Most vans from the '80s on have problems with peeling paint--the EPA made the auto companies change the formula on the paints, and they don't hold up as well. Once in a blue moon you find one that was garaged, but they are rare--standard garage doors are 7' high, too low to get a van inside, even without a roof rack. Other age issues--after 200,000 miles the upholstery on the driver's seat will be shot, and maybe the foam cushions as well. You could get by for a while by swapping the passenger and driver's seats--the passenger seat usually gets a bit less wear. On old vans sometimes I have had electrical glitches--mostly inside, not under the hood--but they can be hard to figure out and fix.

On that front bumper--they might be slots for an old-fashioned bumper jack, or just somebody's idea of decoration. I would not trust any bumper for towing--a tow point needs to go to the frame.

One issue with anything that old can be parts. The basic stuff--engine parts, alternators, starters, tuneup stuff, shocks--are generally pretty available. But less common stuff--the oddball things that you might have to buy factory parts for--may be hard to get. US manufacturers are generally required to keep parts for products on hand for 10 years--after that, when the stock runs out, that's all. A few years ago my daughter and son-in-law had a '95 Dodge one-ton that turned out to have a bad steering gear box; the part was no longer available to fix it. They might have been able to get one from a junkyard, but there's not much warranty on junkyard parts; and a lot of shops will not install junkyard parts for that reason--they may be required by state law to warrant their work.
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  • Texjbird (10-16-2018), TWIH (11-07-2018)
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#3
The steering box is a stock item at Rock Auto. 

What is wrong with your current van?
Compared to parenting, Cat herding is less complicated 
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#4
The van I just sold was a one ton Dodge. 2001 with 101k miles. Had the 360. The rear end ratio was 4.10. It would cruise 60-65 easily. That's where I ran it. Would get 12-13mpg in the Ozark Hills which was 3rd gear a lot. End of the shifter has a button to lock out the overdrive. I used it below 50mph. Transmissions die when they start hunting between 3rd and o/d.

Main issue is rust. These are unibody construction and prone to rust. The front unibody rails get rusty. Unfortunately, that's where the steering box and suspension mount. There is no repair that I am aware of. Otherwise these are good, durable vans. Mine still had the original starter and all the original steering and suspension parts. Granted it only had 100k on it but it is almost 18 years old. There is one in town here with 300k and still runs and looks good.
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  • Texjbird (11-08-2018)
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#5
Have it checked by a mechanic. Some sellers lie like rugs.
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  • Texjbird (11-08-2018)
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#6
No Rock Auto in our area. Apparently my daughter's mechanic could not find one locally.

My current van is a real cream puff, but I have not used it much for work. It's a '91 Chevy 3/4 ton, 350 engine. The original owner had it until a couple of years ago, and apparently had an 8' high garage door and kept it inside. He was either in Michigan or Illinois, but there is no visible rust. Paint somewhat faded, but not peeling. Only 84,000 miles when we got it in Nov. '17. Almost to 100,000 now. Biggest problem with it is the odometer quit working at 97,000--speedometer works, odometer and trip odometer do not. Apparently a plastic gear inside stripped. I have been keeping rough track of miles traveled by gas consumption--it was getting 15-16 mpg since we got it. Closer to 15 since I put a roof rack and solar panels on the roof this summer.

We paid more than we usually do for this van, but not as much as the last owner was asking. But there really are some nice ones out there, if you look long enough. May have to look beyond the immediate neighborhood--we drove 100 miles to get this one.
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  • Texjbird (11-08-2018)
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#7
rockauto is an online company https://www.rockauto.com/



221k miles mean everything that moves has worn out so unless you want to rebuild it or it has receipts for new engine and transmission  or they want $800 for it i wouldnt buy it

jewellann,if your looking for a larger rig tell us the city,max budget and we will find you a few to think about
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  • Texjbird (11-08-2018)
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#8
I'm with Gary, closing in on a quarter million miles, it's going to need a lot of shop work, unless the seller has a lengthy record of recent repairs.

Don't know the price they're asking, but i'm willing to bet there's a van out there with half the miles for the same or close to the same price as that one.
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  • Texjbird (11-08-2018)
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#9
So you're looking for something for towing heavy stuff?
So POed at the mess the windows have caused you'd take anything else, including a stretched Yugo?
Or that it's a bit bigger?

It will cost you gas mileage, as Snik and Rat mentioned.

The difference between a B200 and a B300 could be absolutely nothing. 'Trucks' are built to spec.
For instance, my brother's 3/4 ton Dodge has a Dana 80.
Our one-ton Dodge van had only a Dana 60.

BW pointed out SOME states consider a one-ton a truck, and then you have to license it as one.
Sometimes dweller in 237k miles '07 Grand C-van w/ a solar powered fridge and not much else
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  • Texjbird (11-08-2018)
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#10
Here in Indiana we have to pay excise tax on our vehicles, every year when renewing the registration. The newer, the more tax, of course. (Rural Indiana is old-car heaven.) But if a van was manufactured as "commercial"--a cargo van rather than passenger--it also gets a higher tax rate. They figure you will make money on it, and they want some of it. Getting the "commercial" designation changed may be possible, but a hassle. And from things I have seen here and/or on CRVL, insurance companies are leery of DIY van conversions. If it's already classified as a passenger vehicle, you don't have to make any official changes.

One possible thing to look at: some states have a legal requirement that churches replace their buses after a certain mileage; the '91 Dodge I wrote about above had been owned by a Catholic church in Ohio, so they had to replace it at 50,000 miles. The guy who drove it for them bought it, later sold it to his carpenter son, who sold it to me. Only had 75,000 miles when I got it. A lot of churches that want buses use a 15-passenger van instead of a school bus, because if a vehicle carries 16 people or more, most places require the driver to have a CDL instead of a standard driver's license.
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  • Texjbird (11-08-2018)
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