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Old 04-07-2004, 07:54 AM   #1
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310 turbo blown engine

HELP PLEASE We bought a 310 turbo airstream motor home (1984) in Gig Harbor two weeks ago and started back home to Berry, KY. After four stops for repairs the last mechanic (in Cheyene Wyoming) said we would never make it home, the engine is shot. I called Airstream, they were not much help. North Coast Ford in Cleveland, OH says the engine is discontinued. We're back home after a 49 hour greyhound bus ride. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Engine rebuild? Engine replacement with a newer model? Shipping it home? The motor home is parked on the street in Cheyene, I have to move fast. Can anyone help?
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Old 04-07-2004, 08:44 AM   #2
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Just as I was telling friends this very weekend, I am going to a Diesel to avoid blown engines, I never heard of a blown diesel engine.

Can this be true?

If so, how? I can only suspect complete disregard for maintenance, I would be ready to mame a seller. This did not happen overnight.

I feel your pain,
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Old 04-07-2004, 09:24 AM   #3
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Your best bet for the short term is to locate RV storage in the Cheyenne area and get it towed there and off of the street. Then, you can go about the business of having a mobile mechanic or someone look at it at that location to try and determine the problem. If the work to fix turns out to be major, you'll at least have the time to work out the cost of rebuild vs. new motor vs. shipping it home on a flatbed.

Or, cut your losses and put a For Sale sign on it at the storage lot.
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Old 04-07-2004, 09:46 AM   #4
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We feel your pain.

geo-357:

Could you post the type and mileage of your engine?

I'm assuming right now that it is the turbo-Isuzu, but the knowledge of the model and size would help.

To convert to a 454 gas engine would probably be more than you would want to do on an "emergency" repair.

For sure, take the advice of "coriolis1" and get it into a storage yard.

On the up side, there are a bunch of the Isuzu diesels around, the P-30 chassis was very popular 20 years ago, and a lot of retired chassis' with engines are languishing in retirement yards.

Depending on the severity of damage to your engine, you could have yours rebuilt in a shop, or purchase a rebuilt off of the shelf.

Search for "Diesel Engine Rebuilders" in large city directories (Houston, Atlanta, Memphis, Miami, etc.). The large diesel rebuilders don't generally advertise too much, so you may have to do some digging.

Contact any source you may have in Cheyene (professional, fraternal, friend of a friend) or the Cheyene Chamber of Commerce for a recommendation for a reputable mechanic.

In the meantime, get an estimate close to home to do what you need to do, and determine what a low-boy haul to your home area would be. Just off the top of my head, I don't think transporting it to Kentucky is an option.

49 hours on a bus! Woof!!!
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Old 04-07-2004, 10:19 AM   #5
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More helpful ideas here....

Some earlier discussion about this very idea....

http://www.airforums.com/forum...ead.php?t=7823

http://www.airforums.com/forum...read.php?t=844

Besides another Isuzu, the 5.9 liter Cummins was installed in at least one MH by the factory, and the new Isuzu 6.6 liter should fit also - but I would imagine both newer engines would pose unique transmission questions.
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Old 04-07-2004, 01:07 PM   #6
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geo-357,
Sorry to hear about your troubles. I agree with Dennis about buying yourself some time. Making remote decisions on repair/replace like this quickly can cost you. Have you called Bluegrass RV in Lexnington or Northside RV to see about "towing" or transporation to Lexington?
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Old 04-07-2004, 01:39 PM   #7
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No, but I'll call bluegrass rv as soon as i get the number, thanks for the advice.
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Old 04-07-2004, 01:57 PM   #8
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Bluegrass was no help. They no longer service the airstream chasis
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Old 04-07-2004, 05:13 PM   #9
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Isuzu problems

Just how is the engine "blown": Did is sieze? Did it grenade? Was it out of oil? Will it run? Is the block intact? What is the rest of the unit like? How much money do you have tied up? All of these questions are important. YOU cannot come to a decision with out the answers. If the unit is rough and requires a lot more work, then you could be past the point of investing more$. If you have very little invested maybe you should bite the bullet and spend some bucks. Tough decision. If you bought this from a dealer maybe you should post the name.
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Old 04-07-2004, 08:23 PM   #10
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Is this a time when the Forum's Blue List or the "So you want a trailer that is 3 states away. . ." list of Forum helpers might come to the rescue--or at least assistance? Is anyone from the Forum in the Cheyenne area who might be able to give closer-at-hand information about storage facilities, reliable mechanics, and so on? Just a thought. I cannot imagine how helpless you must be feeling--so far away from the problem. Hoping someone can be of help to you!
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Old 04-07-2004, 08:27 PM   #11
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Based on very little research I would really run the numbers on this.

A low miles take out replacement is 4-7 K complete with turbo. R&R should be straightforward but the labor will be approx 1500 for the swap. This does not include getting the engine to a shop to have it replaced.

So take what you paid for the MH, plus 6-9K (I always round up) to replace the Motor. Does that create a bank buster figure with the other stuff you want to/need to do?

joepospisil has done a Cummins install and has the cost on that conversion. I think he did it to a gasser, so in your case there are a few things that you will not have to do. Here is a link to Joe's user profile. I would ask for his advice as he has been here, done that.
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Old 04-07-2004, 08:28 PM   #12
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Nobody in Wy. on the list sorry.

BTW it will go out this weekend, so be looking for it!
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Old 04-07-2004, 11:28 PM   #13
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I can't imagine a better place to get a diesel rebuilt. There must be more off brand and obsolete farm equpment running within 200 miles of Cheyenne than anywhere else in North America. I was a diesel mechanic on a ranch near there 30 years ago and witnessed some miracle cures.

Start with these guys but seriously consider dumping your coach, saving the repair bill and getting another one near home. Last year I looked all over for a diesel with a blown motor for a transplant project. You might get more than you think.

Local results for isuzu diesel rebuild near Cheyenne, WY
Diesel Service Co Incorporated - 0.9 miles S - 400 E Deming Dr, WY - (307) 635-7986
Machine Shop The - 1.0 miles E - 711 Russell Ave, WY - (307) 634-4414
Lyon's Automotive Inc - 1.3 miles S - 1240 W Leisher Rd, WY - (307) 772-0346
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Old 04-16-2004, 01:34 AM   #14
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Geo 357, I might know something about your unit. It may have been one I looked at a few years ago. At that time it had a new diesel engine as the original one died at 145 K. I've sent you a private message with the name and phone number of the seller (and long-time second owner). If it the same unit, you may have bought it from the third owner.
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