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About UncleDave

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  1. Long ago, pickup trucks were the purview of contractors, farmers, and a few hot rodders who loved to go mud bogging. Simple, tough machines meant to do work and not much else. Then the DIY home improvement craze hits, and upper-middle-class Chad and Buffy Homeowner are convinced they need a pickup truck for their bi-monthly run to the home improvement store. Trucks become popular suburban haulers. However, Chad and Buffy Homeowner and friends are appalled that their trucks are not as well-appointed as their Volvo wagons. Manufacturers recognize this, and start giving their trucks more car-like rides, interiors, and features, and the prices creep higher. Then, with all the money Chad and Buffy saved by being their own contractors, they can afford to buy a camper/boat/horses/jetskis, etc., and use the truck to haul toys around every weekend. In the meantime, the F150 increases its established lead as the nation's most popular vehicle. At the same time, the popularity of pickup trucks among the middle class prompts manufacturers to add more passenger space, more toy hauling capacity, and more creature comforts than ever before. Manufacturers build in huge profit margins on their trucks, and capitalize on up-selling well-qualified consumers into the higher trim levels. Trucks are then marketed to the more well-to-do consumers who have bigger homes, bigger toys, and bigger wallets. Suddenly, the 1/2-ton isn't enough; so begins the trend to up-sell wealthy buyers into HD trucks. The pickup truck has evolved for better or worse. For most, is no longer about just doing work. It's about image, lifestyle, and capabilities beyond what a basic truck used to be. Convincing the average consumer to replace their car/SUV/CUV with a truck requires the truck to offer all the conveniences and comforts expected of a car/SUV/CUV. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that expectation. But what many people have an issue with is when manufacturers, knowing the market as they do, deliberately up-sell consumers to more expensive vehicles just to get the same ubiquitous technology that comes standard on even the most basic Kia. It's infuriating. And they love it when we squabble about features on forums because that helps get people clamoring to keep up with what the other guy has. Clever folks, those marketing types; they understand societal pressures more than we give them credit for. As for me, I enjoy my bare bones reliable work truck with less gadgets to break, and basic easy-to-clean hard interior surfaces. At least manufacturers still recognize there's a (small? niche?) market for trucks like mine, since they still offer them. That being said, my next truck is most definitely going to be more luxurious, since it will probably be my retirement vehicle.
  2. Do you feel the vibration in the steering wheel, or is it a general drive train vibration? Depending on your engine/transmission combo, this could be AFM kicking in. I don't notice AFM on mine until I'm at the same RPM and road speed as you describe. At those speeds and below, the V4 mode is quite noticeable. I haven't had any of the issues with transmission shudder so I don't know if that would manifest itself the way you describe; someone else might have a better idea.
  3. I agree, I see way more 5.3-equipped trucks on dealer lots than 4.3, even on the lower-trim models. And at that, I've only seen the 4.3 in Customs,;even the WT's I've seen were 5.3.
  4. I have a '19 Custom and I love it. It addresses many of your concerns: 1. The leather on the seats don't seem like that are stretched properly and have bunches or leather on the seat both drivers and passengers. No leather on mine, so not a concern. 2. Steering wheel design is cheap and diameter is smaller than K2XX I agree, it does feel cheap, mine is not even leather-wrapped! 3. They changed up the steering wheel buttons for the menu and setting the cruise. They seem really annoying how they are controlled (right hand roller button) Custom does not have right-hand buttons, problem solved! 4. Leave the tow haul button in the end of the shifter, should have left the trailer brake on the top left. I had that on my older Ram and was constantly bumping the thing with my thumb when shifting. Hated it. Plus, new multi-function modes require a different control, a shift-lever button would be kludgy scrolling through several modes. Knob is easier. Also, mine didn't come with a brake controller, so nothing to complain about there. 5. Leather used on the dash and stitching seems cheap. Same with the plastic surround around the infotainment screen in dash. Ain't got leather on the dash, no worries here. 6. Truck seems really light weight, reminds me more of driving a car. I came from a car; this truck is anything but light weight! 7. Stop Start feature while at a stoplight. I realize they are wringing out every last drop of mileage they can get, this feature is just plan annoying. I have the 4.3 V w/AFM, thus no start/stop. So there you have it, if you want to solve most of these issues, get the cheaper model and don't look back!
  5. You can only get messages when plugged into the USB, using the phone's own messaging app via Car Play/Android Auto. At least this is how Apple Car Play works. I assume Android Auto works the same way(?).
  6. Well, bottom line is, I was told this cannot be installed on my truck because I don't have RPO Z82. Without that, GM will not provide the code to install the software. We also verified that all this particular update adds is the single trajectory line for the reverse camera view, which I can certainly live without. I would have considered this a complete waste of time, except I learned something, and I got to drive the truck another 50 miles which makes me happy. I love driving this thing! Of course, if I had RPO Z82, I would already have this installed to begin with. Oh well, no biggie for me since I can still tow regardless. If I really wanted or needed this I would have bought a truck with it already installed from the factory.
  7. I used Cooper AT3's on my Ram years back and they were great in all weather conditions. Once these stock tires wear out, I'll be replacing with the Coopers.
  8. Yup, no pushbutton on WT, Custom, or Custom Trail Boss. You sure there aren't any Customs or Custom TB's in your area? Either they sell fast or dealers aren't bothering to order them...
  9. Sounds like something may be wrong with the interlock. I checked mine and ct_corey is correct. Definitely a trip to the dealer is in order.
  10. It shouldn't... Mines a double-cab, so I assume it would work for a crew cab as well. Like I said the only caveat is that it's almost too deep for the passenger side, but it fits perfectly under the drivers side. The pic is of the passenger side bin, and you can see the bottom of the driver's side seat, and how far the bin comes out because of the jack. But I can sit in that seat without the bin interfering.
  11. My truck didn't come with the rear under-seat storage bins. I was cruising around the tool aisle at Home Depot today and came across these things: Tool Caddy/Organizer Stuffed one under each side in back. Surprisingly they stay in place. The passenger side could be a bit narrower though because of the jack, but it works. Removable in case I need the floor space. Best part is I can stack 'em, lock 'em together and carry them as one unit. This should do the trick until I can get something a little more custom fit. Keeps the tie-downs nice and neat.
  12. Big Brother is certainly watching! I did it the easy way, I bought a stripped-down truck that didn't even come with OnStar. There are no OnStar buttons, no OnStar app, no shark fin antenna, and the spot for the fuse in the panel is empty. I didn't think you could by ANY GM vehicle without it these days. Unless there's some secret spy module somewhere, I guess I got lucky!
  13. When I had a Ram with MDS (same spiel as AFM) people who loved to mod their exhaust would complain about the drone of the engine in V4 mode, so they would disable MDS. On my 2011, Tow/Haul mode would deactivate MDS, some people just drove in Tow/Haul mode all the time. For some folks the sound and vibration of V4 mode just bothers them, which I can understand. DFM is still very new. I haven't read about any wide spread durability issues with keeping AFM activated, but I've often wondered about the long-term effects of deactivating the same cylinders every time. Would that cause different wear patterns in the valve train between cylinders? I've followed several rebuild threads and have seen evidence that it could have some effect on very high-mileage engines. They still ran fine, but the wear level was noticeable and measurable. But as far as affecting performance over the average lifespan of an engine, probably not. I would think that DFM would not be an issue at all in that regard, since it cycles between cylinders, it's not the same cylinders every time. Seems like a vastly superior system overall, IMHO. However, the sound of the engine might still be affected, which may bother some people. I haven't driven a truck with DFM yet so I have no opinion of the sound one way or the other. One other reason, with which I tend to agree, is anything that adds a level of complexity to a system increases the probability of issues down the road. Simplicity is king when it comes to reliability and serviceability.
  14. I had this happen twice before I realized I wasn't putting my foot on the brake before starting. I'm not saying you're as dumb as I am (because that would be quite a feat!), but sometimes it is the simplest little things.
  15. I don't have the second camera. I saw one early demonstration video where the hitch view was just a digital zoom of the bottom area of the regular camera angle view. I've never seen one like that in real life, and it seems a bit kludgy, so it probably was dropped in production in favor of the second camera on upscale trims.
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