"How to get a HET in life..." - M1070 Acquisition thread

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Castle Bravo

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Earlier this year, when the M1070 HETs started showing up on GL, I knew I would never have enough dollars in one place to get one. That didn't stop me from wanting to get one, but it was definitely a deterrent. Every so often the HETs would bring less money than they did at first, but they were still too expensive for me. I knew I still wouldn't be able to get one. I've always thought they were really cool looking trucks and had always wanted one. After a while, they were starting to drop closer to a price that might possibly be something I could swing. One day, it occurred to me that what I'd have into my 5 ton when it was done (925A2 with LWS and all the trim) would be a significant amount towards a HET. I started watching the auctions and paying attention to what prices they were going for and devising a strategy to get one.

Everybody and their brother has a 5 ton (As well they should, they're just about giving them away) but not everybody has a HET! Figuring that I could always get another 5 ton in the future, I decided to sell off a truck and a lot of my 5 ton items that I was holding on to. Much more quickly than I thought it would happen, I started to have a sizable amount of money put into the HET fund. I sold my beloved ammo trailer and many other items that I thought I'd never get rid of. It was quite simple - I'd look at something and if I wanted a HET more than it, it went up for sale.

Eventually, the pile was big enough and I won one of the trucks at Ft Riley a while back. (When they went cheap) I was very surprised at the prices the trucks brought - pleasantly surprised, I had expected to spend about 25% more than I did. I think I got a nice one, not the cheapest and not the most expensive. In talking to M920 (Soni) about M1070s, he offered his assistance in getting mine home. Initially, I planned to drive out to Kansas and take what tools, fluids, etc I would need to get the truck home. At 1100 miles away with 4 MPG and 45 MPH, it would quite the undertaking. I ran all the numbers and came up with a higher dollar amount than I had hoped. Factor in time away from work and such and it started to seem like a poor choice. I talked to Soni about going to get it for me. He's considerably closer to Kansas than I am and was up for the adventure. The EUC cleared in 7 days and we set an appointment to pick up the truck.

Soni picked up the truck and reported that it was in fantastic - but dirty shape. Apparently one extreme drawback of the HET is that it doesn't come with a cupholder. This is bad in that it causes everyone to spill coffee EVERYWHERE in the cab. It is a 2008 Oshkosh rebuild. Awesome! It didn't come with any BII except the one thing that I would want - a 3/4" air impact gun. Soni's trip back to New Mexico was favorably uneventful.

When I was able, M35A2-AZ (Albert) and myself traveled to Chama, NM to pick up my truck. Everything was pretty straightforward and our return trip with the truck was uneventful as well. It took 13 hours to travel almost 500 miles. One thing we did unique to this trip was to put the chase vehicle in front of the HET to minimize the danger of a rear end collision to that vehicle. Another thing was when we had to stop and switch drivers, the driver of the chase vehicle would zoom ahead and eat or use the restroom or whatever and then be ready to go when the HET arrived. The HET driver would then eat/restroom/whatever and catch back up. It seems like it would still take longer than you thought to catch up to a 45 mph vehicle, though.

Its not hard to drive, but it does take a while to acclimate yourself on how to steer the HET - Soni advised us that you have to almost ignore it and then it becomes smooth. Your first instinct is to fight it, but you end up over-correcting and steering back and forth a lot. I think it has a tighter turning radius than a 5 ton does. It is really quite nimble for how large of a truck it is. It does have the blind spot in the front passenger side, but its not near as bad as the 916's. The large windshield and hood angle make for a lot of visibility. The windows in the doors kinda help. It is easier to drive with a passenger spotting for you, but it is not impossible by yourself. At 6" wider than most of the large military vehicles, it is wide, but nothing so much that makes you drive it any different. The same skill set applies from any of the big trucks.

The HET is easily the quietest military vehicle I've driven. While the engine noise is there, it is not overpowering at all. You can talk to someone else in the cab easily and talk on the phone if you need to. The cab doesn't have any of the squeaks and creaks of my M916 and nothing rattles. The blower/supercharger noise is there, and when you're loading the engine, you can hear the turbo, but it is not loud. The Jake brake is quiet, too quiet to enjoy how they typically sound. Anybody who says that the HET is loud is crazy or hasn't driven one. If all you ever drove was a Nissan Leaf, you would think the HET is way loud, but in comparison to other military trucks, it is quiet. The HET rides really nice. The driver's seat is excellent and the truck doesn't tire you out like some military vehicles do. Perhaps its the added height, but you don't feel as if 45 mph is too slow in the HET. It seems to be the correct speed for the type of truck that it is. I imagine a MTVR has very similar qualities, as well as other similar late model Oshkosh offerings.

The HET has an appropriate amount of brakes and traction to match. It doesn't drive like a bobtailed tractor, and I guess it shouldn't at 40000 lbs. No braking issues whatsoever. It went up and down the hills at 40-45 mph. Going from Holbrook into Payson and down into Fountain Hills, AZ was effortless. 6500 ft to about 2000 ft. Other than the stoplights in Payson, we didn't have to use the service brakes at all. Even stayed in 5th gear. Using the Jacobs brake provided an easy decent. Albert reported that it did pass a RV towing too much, but said vehicle passed the HET on the downhill.

The front tires are fairly feathered from perhaps too much toe-in and the severe amount of camber the truck has naturally. There is a rear air bag ride level adjustment and mine needs to be adjusted. It leans somewhat to the driver's side. Over time I will figure all this out.

Something that Soni pointed out to me is that the 8V92 engine, only having about 7000 miles on it, is quite a ways from being broken in. Some say this happens closer to 50000 or 60000 miles. At a dollar a mile to drive the truck, that means I'll probably never break it in... ;-)

Soni's advice and information was invaluable all throughout the process and Albert's assistance in getting it home was much appreciated.
 

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fuzzytoaster

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Awesome review! The millions dollar question is MPG and fuel consumption. I have hopes to get one too but have no idea what I'd do with one. rofl
 

TexAndy

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I really can't keep up with you Jones's.

Good grief that's a monster. 40,000 pounds empty? Good griefimous.
 

drician

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Thank you for the great write up, pictures, and video. I really want one, maybe someday.....
 

swbradley1

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Pretty cool Matt. It would have been even better if you guys had brought it to Ohio to pick up your other items two week ago.

:)
 

M35A2-AZ

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Driving the HET was great and by far the easiest and best driving MV that I have been it. But it is big and you have to watch all the other little cars.
The truck is in great shape!! I am 6'6" and it makes me look like a little kid again.
 

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M920

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Great write up Matt! I really enjoyed visiting with you and Albert....to bad you did not have more time to spend in Chama! Maybe when I come down in January, we can take the "Big Iron" out and do some heavy duty six- and eight-wheeling.....:beer:

Soni
 

Castle Bravo

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Welcome to the HET club. Please post up any good fix its on the 1070 tech and tips thread.
My only tip so far is don't fall out of it! You'd need a parachute.

Awesome review! The millions dollar question is MPG and fuel consumption. I have hopes to get one too but have no idea what I'd do with one. rofl
I didn't measure it, but Soni said the one he drove got about 4 MPG.

Pretty cool Matt. It would have been even better if you guys had brought it to Ohio to pick up your other items two week ago.:)
I didn't have it yet then, and I wouldn't be home yet from Dayton if I had brought it.

What are your plans for the truck?
Nothing in particular - probably a lot of car shows.

Great write up Matt! I really enjoyed visiting with you and Albert....to bad you did not have more time to spend in Chama! Maybe when I come down in January, we can take the "Big Iron" out and do some heavy duty six- and eight-wheeling.....:beer:

Soni
Definitely! Thanks again for your help.
 

wreckerman893

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The only reason I didn't get one of the HET's out of Riley is because the wife would have had to co-sign for a mortgage.:roll:
 

DeucesWild11

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You should take the last two axles off and put a M105 trailer bed on the back..

Just kidding, but that may look cool too, but then again what's the point..

Best of luck with her.
 

goodguyzy

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I also was dreaming but never could afford one until the big price drop. I took a gamble and a loan and bit the bullet. Curious that no more have come up on g/l in the last few weeks.
 

Castle Bravo

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There were some things that were not readily apparent to me about the HET when I first saw them in detail online. Here are some of those things -

The convoy light is a Model 14 just like the typical military convoy lights, though it is 12v. Even has the same dumb toggle bolts for some reason.

het-21.jpg


The engine oil and transmission oil dipsticks are above the fuel tank and below the cab. Transmission oil and fuel filters are also there. All of these are accessible without raising the hood. Additionally, the hole in the driver's side of the hood is so you can observe the engine coolant sight glass from outside.

het-24.jpg


There is a large, lockable storage compartment at the back of the engine doghouse in the cab.

het-16.jpg


There is a SINCGARS sugar scoop mount behind the cab. A sugar scoop and matching unit mounted right up with no modifcations.

het-19.jpg


Nothing in particular, I just thought this was a cool picture. Though you can see that the S-cam canisters are above the axles instead of below them. All 3 axles on the rear tridem have spring/parking brakes.

het-18.jpg


The CTIS system is made by CM Automotive, the same manufacturer as the CTIS on the M35A3, (uh oh...) but so far mine is working just fine. Oddly, the on/off switch is tiny and very easy to accidentally move to the other position. On a truck that is full of overbuilt, beefy items, its almost lacking.

het-17.jpg


The winch platform ladder swings out to allow access to the batteries, which roll out on a tray and are protected inside a box.

het-22.jpg


A shot of the auxiliary 3000 lb winch. It is also hydraulic and is used to pull out the main winches.

het-23.jpg


The rear 55,000 lb winches have an air powered tensioner that is simply some small air bags behind a hinge that levers a bar onto the winch cable.

het-20.jpg


The air conditioner isn't an air conditioner - just a ventilator/blower. As long as the outside air temperature is lower than what is in the truck, it actually works out pretty well. Its probably a hairdryer in the summer.

het-15.jpg
 
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