Sounds like a tough decision. You could go with the 1500 and get back into a truck sooner than you thought or just wait a bit and get the truck it seems you're leaning towards but that you want and will be happy with. My vote is 2500/3500, just a beefier truck all the way around (if I could even remotely justify a diesel I'd get one in a heartbeat!), you have the option to haul/tow more if you decide to, the mod possibilities but also, you can enjoy having a diesel without the pita of exhaust fluid. Good luck with your choice though, both are great trucks!