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Old 06-02-2002, 09:05 AM   #1
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Question Class B-190 Vans - engine size

Cannot find a forum for the B-190 van so hope someone here can help me. Am interested in purchasing Airstream van camper with a Ford 351 engine. I understand that most came with a Ford 460.
Sources say that the 351 is not powerful enough for such a heavy vehicle as the 190. They also say that the 460 is a gas hog. Would anyone like to offer any information that might help me make a decision as I have found 2 to choose from. As an older female, I admit my total lack of knowledge regarding engines and such. Wise input would be appreciated. Thank you.

1991 Airstream B-190 Camper Van on a Ford 351 or Ford 460
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Old 06-02-2002, 03:01 PM   #2
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Hi Joy. I see you live in N CA as I do. Almost any direction you leave, your going over some mtns. You could be sorry you bought one with a 351 engine. You would be working the smaller engine pretty hard going up Interstate 5 to Oregon as an example. The bigger 460 engine will pull the mtns a lot easier & very possible get better MPG due to the fact it isn't working so hard. My Suburban has a 454 engine & pulls a mtn easier & faster then the smaller 350 engine & gets better MPG than my friend with a 350 engine that pulls a TT that weighs about the same as my A/S.
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Old 06-02-2002, 04:01 PM   #3
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Class B-190 Vans - engine size?

Hi Jim
Thanks for the input. I think after running all over the web today checking ratings and reviews, that the larger engine might be the better choice. However will look for a B-190 that has been very well maintained in order to get maximum performance - hopefully!!!

Thanks again.
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Old 06-02-2002, 08:09 PM   #4
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Hey since y'all live in NC...know anything about the Corps of Engineers parks at Kerr Reservoir near Wilkesboro? I am planning to head thru there and stay a nite or two at one of them in late June. Driving up from Atlanta thru Charlotte to eventually hit Shenandoah KOA after a stop in NC.
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Old 06-02-2002, 08:34 PM   #5
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Alan, you may need those glasses after all
N CA not NC
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Old 06-02-2002, 09:31 PM   #6
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Sharon,
There is a B-190 group on Yahoo groups, if you go to the groups home page and do a search for B190 or Airstream you should find it.

John
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Old 06-02-2002, 09:56 PM   #7
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Yahoo Group Airstream190

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Airstream190/

Not much traffic on the Group's site. Only one post since Sept 2001.

Hopefully you will have better luck here.

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Old 06-03-2002, 08:51 AM   #8
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Class B-190 (engines & more)

Bobby & John - Checked out the address you gave and Vince and I have communicated but didn't find him thru his group. I think it is too hidden and suggested he start one at Yahoo maybe. They have several Airstream groups under the Airstream list, or maybe here.

Alan - that's a "gotcha" on the NC - are you the driver or the map person in your RV? Bet you'd be fun to go with if the map person. Personally I am a gypsy and love to wander off down the wrong road - have found many an adventure there. Let us know about Kerr Reservoir and your trip.

Jim, you were among the many who replied to us about the engine. I think we decided that the 460 engine was the better deal. The concensus is that the 351 probably has to work harder when RV loaded to max and if you were to tow which would create more stress on engine and transmission and possibly shorten life of both. We don't want to tow but occasionally may tow a boat (for our son), or a trailer (taking suff to flea market twice a year), or our pickup loaded with camping stuff (if going to camp for a week or more with grandkids).

We will have to pay $1000 more for the one with the 460 but also we believe it has had better maintenance and the tires are practically new on it (the other one would have had to have a new set)

It was a toss up as to whether we tow that often or not but better-to-have-the-power-if-you-need-it-then-be-sorry-you-don't-have-it won!

A l s o - What about shocks. I see where some have put on the Bilstein shocks.

And any input on changing from a 30' Class C monster to a 19' Van would be appreciated. We are a little put off by the size but do believe we will go on more short trips (which we don't now) and maybe even a few longer trips since easier to go - and maybe more visits to family since will have own "nest" to retreat into when things get to hectic.

Thanks for all the input.
Happy trails!!
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Old 01-23-2006, 03:21 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joysjoy600
Cannot find a forum for the B-190 van
http://autos.groups.yahoo.com/group/...am190/messages
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Old 01-23-2006, 06:04 PM   #10
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I think that too many forums exist with too little traffic. A bit of concentration can be a good thing sometimes.

The engine is one matter, the gearing another. The 7.5L uses a 3.54 rear. I have a 1990 like this that gets about 10 mpg towing an Ambassador and 11 mpg otherwise. The smaller engine might need the 4.01 rear for comfort but careful driving and good maintenance of engine and tranny should be OK with the smaller engine as long as towing isn't on the agenda.

BTW, the reason you don't find hardly any diesels is because the weight of the engine puts GAWR ratings with too little margin. I don't know how much weight the 5.4L saves over the 7.5 but that might be a factor as well.
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Old 01-23-2006, 06:32 PM   #11
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Hey, do you guys know you are in a 4 year old thread?
Info is info, but the person that started the thread hasn't posted anything since these posts.
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Old 01-23-2006, 07:01 PM   #12
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Hey, do you guys know you are in a 4 year old thread?
Good point. Sometimes a trust in the system when asking for new traffic is defeated by some other phenomena.

i.e. I don't look at dates when I view what are supposed to be only new traffic. So its good somebody does - and says something.
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Old 02-02-2006, 11:05 AM   #13
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Airstream B190 351 vs 460

Hello! As an 'older female' myself I could totally relate to your 351 vs 460 dilemma. My boyfriend has a Gorgeous 1992 Airstream B190 with a 460. He has been in the RV business for over 25 years & has owned 2 lots. He is Very Picky & Very knowledgeable. He IS SELLING HIS NOW & it is Meticulous! (Brand New Carpet,Upholstery,In-Dash DVD/CD/GPS system...)*I will be gald to give you more info at your request. TO GET BACK TO THE ENGINES...He said that the 351 was what it came with 'Standard'...which is only enough to get by as a VAn...but not really meant to allow the Airstream to be all that it can be - What it was meant to be, a RV Mini Motorhome! You would need to have 'pedal to the metal' to get up any mountains with the 351..That is where your gas would really go fast! The gentleman who answered you from CA was Right On...Colleen
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Old 02-02-2006, 11:14 AM   #14
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Airstream B190 351 vs 460 & More...

JOY, as an 'Older' female myself I could totally relate to your 351 vs 460 engine dilemma! My boyfriend has a Gorgeous 1992 Airstream B190. He has been in the RV business for over 25 years & is Very Knowledgable & Very Picky! The gentleman who responded to you from CA was Right On...the 351 would be fine if you used it as a VAn...but if you really want to take advantage of what it Really is, an RV to take you where you want to go, you need the upgraded 460. To go up any mountains you would have to have the accelerator all the way down...this load would use more gas because it is working so much harder! Do yourself a real favor & stick with the 460!

***I will be posting his 1992 Airstram B190 for sale on this site. He loves it, but due to job transfer needs to sell it. It is Beautiful with brand new upholstery, carpet, & Top of the Line Pioneer In Dash (flips out) DVD, CD player & GPS system. Just Amazing system! Also top of the line security system with remote control! Contact me if you would like more info before I get a chance to post it! Colleen
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