Thinking about pulling the Deuce Trigger Again

cattlerepairman

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The Canadian M35A2 licence built trucks (with a series of improvements, including rear suspension, massive Allison auto box, Ross power steering, but still no dual brakes) that you can buy these days are all major projects as far as I have seen. Expect significant rust as well as missing parts, often engine oil coolers (our military's way of "demilling"; Detroit Fuel Pincher parts are semi-difficult to find these days) and finding an actual runner is rare.

There is a bunch of US M35A2s around that show up on Kijiji now and then. That might be the better bet. To me, a MLVW is either a major restoration project or a parts truck to pull desirable upgrades off from.
 
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HDN

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I considered a MLVW myself and came to the same conclusion. Bombardier seemed to cheap out on the steel used in the trucks. I think they even had a recall regarding the rear axle suspension assemblies corroding to pieces!
 
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98G

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4-5 years ago I was highly fit, competitive level powerlifter, benching 405. Was mildly offroading an M35A2 on super singles in the AZ desert. I found the low speed rough terrain really needed power steering.

Now I'm old and fat and feeble, with bad rotator cuffs. What was a PITA then would be a serious obstacle now.

Changing topics, the cost of transport really dictates spending more on a local truck....
 

71DeuceAK

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Having worked with you for a couple weeks I'd say my experience was that even in such condition you were strong as a bull compared to my thin, lanky, unchallenged stature. In a way I've been surprised when I found I could pick up and roll a G177 w/wheel & rim.

I myself prefer power steering. Local truck also very much preferable.
 

HDN

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21 here, soon to be 22. Never really got familiar with the Canadian Deuce, was it their own take on the M35A3?
The MLVW predates the M35A3 by about 10 years, and seemed to address the same improvements the DoD wanted. I think the only thing it doesn't have that the M35A3 has is CTIS.
 

Ajax MD

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Somewhere in the deuce forum, is a thread about finding M35A3 wheel bearings and how costly they are (as an example). The A3's were only made for 5 years and are comparatively rare.

While the A3 is a desirable model with all its bells and whistles (Auto trans, CAT engine, CTIS, super singles, assisted steering) If an A3 breaks, it's expensive and parts could be harder to find. I think for a young owner on a tight budget, it might not be a smart choice. Keep it simple, keep it cheap and if possible, buy it local...or at least within the same state.
 

HDN

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You could use M35A2 bearings on an M35A3, but you wouldn't be able to use the CTIS then. That's what makes the A3 bearings special. I'm not concerned about spare parts being hard to find as the A3 still has a ton of parts in common with the A2. I'm only concerned about cost of said parts. But you need some money budgeted for these big trucks anyway :p I'm sure the OP knows that though.
 

TehTDK

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Considering the Deuces I tend to favour the A2 over the A3 because I would always prefer a MultiFuel over a Diesel engine, being situated close to a refinery and several fastfood joints and mechanics I would be able to get oil for free from :p. Downside is missing out of a automatic and power steering but you can't have everything sadly.
 

HDN

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I would love to have a multifuel in my life at some point! I'd love to have an M35A2 as a truck show companion for my A3 and as a place to dump WMO in!
 

Heavy D.

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You could use M35A2 bearings on an M35A3, but you wouldn't be able to use the CTIS then. That's what makes the A3 bearings special. I'm not concerned about spare parts being hard to find as the A3 still has a ton of parts in common with the A2. I'm only concerned about cost of said parts. But you need some money budgeted for these big trucks anyway :p I'm sure the OP knows that though.
Wait really? That is great news because A2 Bearings are like 1/5 the price of an A3. Wouldn’t even matter to me since I disabled CTIS on mine anyway.
 

71DeuceAK

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I always thought an M35A3 could be a neat daily driver, no CDL needed and still the M series "feel". But the A3s seem to command a lot more $$ in general.
 

Jacob2027

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You guys are forgetting a critical component- cab heat!
If OP looks around local (at least if it is like my local) there are lots of these trucks and on this island they all come with the heater. The military brought a bunch up and then left them rather than transport them back south. Also if you shop around local you might find a really good deal.
 

montaillou

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But the A3s seem to command a lot more $$ in general.
They seem to add at least $10k to the price, over an A2. My perception (true or not) has always been the power steering, automatic transmission, diesel engine, big tires and just being newer vs the A2. I think the A2 scares some people away.
 

HDN

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They seem to add at least $10k to the price, over an A2. My perception (true or not) has always been the power steering, automatic transmission, diesel engine, big tires and just being newer vs the A2. I think the A2 scares some people away.
I like the fact it has dual-circuit brakes the most. Otherwise I wouldn't mind an air force A2. I miss driving a manual transmission!
 
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71DeuceAK

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Cab heat is a must in cold climates. I'm no longer currently living in Fairbanks (Although I do need to go back up there one more time and move out) but work may take me to Illinois, which can be similarly cold in the winter.
 

montaillou

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Cab heat is a must in cold climates.
When I first bought my truck, I drove it back from Salt Lake City in March, over the mountains. I alternated dropping a hand below the level of the seat as that area was plenty hot. Seal up all the holes in the cab, and it will generate a fairly comfortable temp.
 
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