I still try to do as much as possible myself on my '02 and '97 trucks such as oil changes, diff and transfer case fluids, brake jobs and other basics like cap and rotor and plugs in my '97 F350. (What's a cap and rotor kids ? ). I no longer mess with the serious stuff like tie rod ends, ball joints and water pumps. I thoroughly enjoy doing the things that I still do but I look to mechanics beyond that. I have a really good friend who is a mechanic and he was one of the best and most honest out there. Unfortunately, he packed all his wrenches and moved to Florida two years ago. Him and I became friends not all that long ago and as our friendship grew, he would invite me over to his shop and let me work on my stuff with his lift and tools and he would drink a beer and tell me what to do while he worked on a Firebird he was restoring. I replaced my rear fuel tank myself in the '97 with his guidance. The last thing him and I did together was replacing the radiator core support in my '97. For those who have never done one, step one is: "Remove front of truck." The core support essentially holds the fenders together, among other things and supports the radiator. It took us 6 hours over two nights working at a casual pace with plenty of beer ! I really don't plan to get rid of either truck anytime soon as they are pretty much bombproof as far as running gear, with Dana 60's in the front with solid axles and both are manual transmissions. My '02 is my daily driver and that has the 7.3 International which is known as the Million Mile Motor. I only have 225,000 on it and it hasn't missed a beat. The problem is the body is not going to make a million miles. The '97 still looks like it rolled out of the showroom and only has 125,000 on the clock. Zach said buy simple in his post above and I am all about that. I have owned nothing but manual transmissions in my trucks since I was 23. Before that, I owned one car, a '72 Chevelle and that was an automatic. I have had an '82 F150, an '87 F350 and the current '97 and '02 F350's. All had to be ordered with manual transmissions and the '02 is the first truck I ever owned with AC. How's that for simple ?