Last post on May 31, 2005 at 8:13 AM
You are in the Pickups - Archived Discussions
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Chevrolet Colorado, Dodge Dakota, Ford Ranger, Toyota Tacoma, Nissan Frontier, Exterior, Engine, Interior, Transmission, Truck
#27 of 76 Re: Testing the big 5 [pro152]
Mar 28, 2005 (1:45 pm)
The guage of the steel varies a lot. There's no way for me to tell what part of the car that the steel is being used for. Could be the body, firewall, floor, gas tank, etc. But I'll start paying attention to see if I see any difference in which companies are using mostly heavier guage steel. Most of the automotive steel we run seems to be from .095" to .165". Just for reference .125" would be 1/8" thick.
#28 of 76 American Trucks
Mar 28, 2005 (1:49 pm)
I like the good old American trucks from Toyota, as well as Dodge and Chevy versus the larger numbers of foreign-made Fords. Chill out, folks, I am just picking on you.
One thing I think people don't look at enough is the mindset of the truck owners. Those who buy Fords, Chevys ,and Dodges expect to load their trucks down far past what even the manufacturer recommends. I know I have had over 4000 pounds in the back of my LIGHT DUTY dodge. The back end was darn near dragging on the ground! My point is that the Nissans and Toyotas are made more to car standards than to truck standards, and the miniature shallow beds they had until recently ensured that nobody could really weigh them down the way the "domestic" trucks get weighed down.
Nissan and Toyota trucks have been predominantly used as sporty trucks rather than heavy commercial trucks. As such, you can't possibly compare their "durability and longevity" to that of Fords, Chevys, and Dodges. Let's let the newer larger trucks get on the market for awhile in Texas and see how many of these new larger Titans are still pushing the 400,000 mile mark. Common sense says that the percentages will drop severely when workers start loading up steel and boulders into them on a regular basis, providing they can actually steal some of the market from the likes of Ford truck owners who know how to abuse a truck. I have driven a Toyota in the past and, though it had a distinct car-like ride, it was toast when I tried to load down the bed. All of the sudden it felt like I was trying to steer an aircraft carrier with a toothpick. That's just my perspective. People's expectations make a difference in their satisfaction of a truck. I expect my truck will eventually develop a rattle or two. But I also expect my truck to start every single time I turn the key and never give me any hassle when I load the largest-in-class bed to the hilt with rocks. When I want a car-like ride and don't have to haul anything around I drive my car. Come on, folks, these are TRUCKS.
Mar 28, 2005 (1:59 pm)
If I am not mistaken, PB2themax, you are also just producing smooth sheet metal, right? The thickness of the steel does not necessarily directly correlate to the thickness of the finished product. Sheet metal is used to "press" or "stamp" forms out like doors and tailgates. Smoother forms will yield a consistently thicker steel on the same guage stock, but the more rigid product comes when curves and lines are pressed into the forms. This results in a slightly thinner yield on the end product, but also one that holds its shape much better. If it didn't, then the surfaces of all vehicles would be as smooth as glass without any corners or ridges. That would make them as aerodynamically sound as possible. Let me know, if you wouldn't mind.
#30 of 76 Re: Steel [shoebrush]
Mar 28, 2005 (2:23 pm)
Our steel is hot rolled from a big slab into a long thin strip, which is then coiled up and sits in a building until it cools to 180 degrees. Then it is "Pickled" in an acid tank which takes any oxidation or scales off of the strip, and cools it down even more. Then it goes to the Cold Mill, which is where I work. It goes through 5 sets of mills, which are just like 100 ton rolling-pins. This reduces the steel to an exact guage, and makes the steel more dense, durable, and smoother. On a good day, we can run 600 tons an hour through the Cold Mill. Then if it's automotive steel, it goes on to be coated in liquid aluminum or zinc to protect from rust. Aluminized steel is mostly what Toyota orders. It's the best product we offer.
I'm not sure exactly what Toyota does with the steel next, but the more curves and lines they stamp into the steel, the more rigid it will be.
#31 of 76 Re: Steel [PB2themax]
Mar 29, 2005 (7:39 am)
Thanks for the info, PB. Here in San Antonio we will be opening a Toyota plant soon and I will be able to see firsthand what the procedures they use are. My uncle already works for them out in California, so I guess I could just ask him, huh? For the purposes of this discussion, though, I think it is important to note that although my uncle works for Toyota he still chooses to drive a Ram. Go figure, huh? I am sure there are many Dodge employees who drive Toyotas. Thanks again.
ET (Eddie Torres)
#32 of 76 Re: Steel [shoebrush]
Mar 29, 2005 (11:51 am)
Congrats on the new job. I've heard that Toyota is a good place to work. Good pay. But I've also heard that Toyota doesn't give very good discounts to their own employees. Tight wads.
If I wasn't getting a Taco, I'd be getting a new Ram. Chrysler has great rebates and 0% APR. The new Dakota is butt ugly though.
#33 of 76 Re: Steel [shoebrush]
Mar 29, 2005 (4:07 pm)
I was driving by the local ford dealer here and noticed where the employees park there are toyotas and dodges, just makes you laugh that they sell the products but dont drive them, anyway just thought that i would share my expereinces with simialrities.
#34 of 76 driving different brands...
Mar 29, 2005 (6:12 pm)
They probably get tired of looking at the same vehicles all the time. I'd probably end up buying something else to at least not feel like I'm at work all the time!
#35 of 76 Re: American Trucks [shoebrush]
Mar 30, 2005 (9:29 pm)
I don't totally agree with you ... you are right American trucks are tough .... but American trucks are only used in North America ... people in other countries specially in Asia and Africa dont know about American trucks ... in Africa and Asia conditions are tough specially in third world countries people can't afford to trade in or buy trucks in every few years ... they have to rely the one they have... most of the time they have to overload them and abuse these trucks ... guess what trucks they use there ?? yes Toyota ...Datsun (Nissan ) ...Issuzu ... Suzuki ... these are the names everybody knows ...reliable and strong trucks .... They dont know Ford , GM or Dodge .... in North America Nissan and Toyota trucks are not strong because they haven't introduced those tough trucks here .... in North America you will see sporty models .... because the Truck Market here is dominated by big three and few years back Toyota and Nissan could not challenged them ... now after building a reputation in car market it seems these Japanese are ready to enter in big truck market .... they are targeting North American Truck market and I say in the next 10 years they will do the same thing what they did in car market ... if you want to see the glimpse just have a look at Toyota Tundra 2007 .... Well I will say if you can run Truck in harsh and tough conditions of a third world country then you can run the truck any where ... Toyota and Nissan have this huge world wide experience .... doesn't matter if its Worlds largest desert Sahara ... or the bare Gulf terrain ... if you talk about Kenyan safari or have a look in Central Asian mountains ... you will see Toyota , Nissan , Isuzu SUVs and Trucks .... yes Land rover are also there but not used by common people .... if North American big threes (GM , Ford , Dodge ) dont come up with something they will loose their domination in next ten years .....!!!
#36 of 76 Re: Testing the big 5 [pb2themax]
Mar 31, 2005 (10:00 pm)
I guess it is difficult to figure out where metal is being used in vehicles. I think you are right when you said that the more curves that are formed in the metal , the more durable the metal becomes. I think that is why Toyota and Nissan made the fenders bulging out and creased more . The fenders seem more solid than the Chevy Colorado , which I guess does not have as many bends to the metal . You would think when they were building the trucks , one of the engineers would spot this weakness ? I just tap the fenders and it rattles like crazy....
I was debating on getting a Nissan or a Toyota 4x4 . They both seem like solid trucks . Now gas prices are going through the roof and I am starting to wonder about the big V6's . Could you tell me what type of Toyota you bought ? I see Toyota still offers the large 4 cylinder , but I am not sure if there would be that much of a difference in fuel consumption ? Maybe a 4 x 2 , with locking diff .????