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Old 01-13-2013, 09:58 AM   #1
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1985 32.5' Airstream 325
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Isuzu fuel mileage

Thinking about buying a 1985 32.5 classic with the Isuzu Diesel. And i would like to get an idea on the fuel mileage I could expect. And what kind of problems to look for before I buy. I have read of mileage from 12 mpg to 17 mpg. And what is a good cruising speed for this setup.

Thanks
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Old 01-13-2013, 10:53 AM   #2
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1983 31' Airstream310
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Send us a pic if you can, I don't think I've ever seen (or heard of) a 32.5. Back to the Isuzu, we get 15 mpg , burn no oil. She has gotten Delo oil every 3,000 miles in the twenty years we've shared our life with her. The upper fuel filter should be changed if it's not been done recently, and the lower should be drained and fresh filter installed at every oil change,depending on the mileage.
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Old 01-13-2013, 12:31 PM   #3
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1985 32.5' Airstream 325
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Here is a couple of pics
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Old 01-13-2013, 12:40 PM   #4
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Nice looking coach, I bet she's slow as all get out unless it's got an overdrive. Are you going to buy her/him? What's the mileage, does the coach come with service records and manuals?
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Old 01-13-2013, 01:02 PM   #5
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Nice Coach!

I think Mike has some experience with those!
Deleo is a great oil... I use it in my Mercedes 190D... but it does not make it faster! I have to say, that driving that is always fun... the lack of power is kinda enjoyable somehow. In a MH I would rather get the MPG..
Make sure the oil filter is put in the right way up... Eh Mike!
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Old 01-13-2013, 01:33 PM   #6
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The tag axle will cost a bit of mpg, extra weight and drag. Somewhere in time there was a change in the Isuzu engine. I'm not sure when but I'm sure somebody here will jump in. The early Isuzu was normally aspirated and an after market low pressure turbo was added by Airstream. Later they used a turbo charged engine from Isuzu. It is the same basic engine but some changes in lower end oiling, pistons and a higher pressure turbo. Also somewhere about this time they went to the 4L80 transmission. All of these changes will have a positive effect on mpg.

Also there may have been different ratio differential gearing. My 280 has 4:56 gears but in discussion with other owners speed vs. rpm, I wonder if some coaches might have 4:88 gears. So far nobody has confirmed this but the speed/rpm numbers seem to indicate something is different. If anybody wants to crawl under their coach in the cold and snow there is supposed to be a tag on one the differential cover bolts with the ratio.
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Old 01-13-2013, 01:39 PM   #7
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Make sure the oil filter is put in the right way up... Eh Mike!
Yup, big time. It was partially my fault; I always fired her up after an oil change, and when I had no pressure, I should have put my foot down with my mechanic. My focus was to get to Phoenix and my uncle's funeral, and I ignored what was obiviously (in hindsight) something serious. Live and learn, though it's going to be tough for future mechanics that that do my oil changes, 'cause I'm going to be on them like a cheap suit!
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Old 01-13-2013, 02:20 PM   #8
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There is shopping bag full of manuals and records the coach has been in the family since new.The engine was replaced not rebuilt in 2005 along with the trans. I never thought to ask which trans it has the son says that it will cruise at 70 all day. The propane tank and related hardware is all new.The generator was removed because it was to noisy it was a diesel Onan it now has an inverter to run the roof air when on the road.

It is a little hard to get information because the father died and the son doesn't know a lot about the coach
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Old 01-13-2013, 02:36 PM   #9
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To have a new engine and trans installed probably cost in the $20,000 to $25,000 range. You have an Argosy moho so you know what it takes to keep one on the road. If the coach is well kept and is what you like and offered at a reasonable price, I'd say go for it. Whatever mileage it gets will be a lot better than than your Argosy.
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Old 01-13-2013, 04:20 PM   #10
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The generator was removed because it was to noisy it was a diesel Onan it now has an inverter to run the roof air when on the road.
The only way I've ever heard of an Isuzu diesel going bad is overheating, caused, mostly, by someone not observing the 3200 rpm rule. I'd never known AS put a diesel gen set in , the propane ones work great, but I would think that the early diesel gen sets mite have been noisy. Wow! A fresh engine and transmission? To kill for on this forum. Dan is right, ours has a American turbo, later versions were Isuzu factory. I've heard Isuzu did a better job mounting the turbo than GM/AS did. Ours is a Garrett, #40908-9012. Not cheap.
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Old 01-18-2013, 12:19 PM   #11
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It looks like this coach is on ebay right now waiting for an opening bid of $10,500
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Old 01-18-2013, 12:49 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Leary View Post
The only way I've ever heard of an Isuzu diesel going bad is overheating, caused, mostly, by someone not observing the 3200 rpm rule. I'd never known AS put a diesel gen set in , the propane ones work great, but I would think that the early diesel gen sets mite have been noisy. Wow! A fresh engine and transmission? To kill for on this forum. Dan is right, ours has a American turbo, later versions were Isuzu factory. I've heard Isuzu did a better job mounting the turbo than GM/AS did. Ours is a Garrett, #40908-9012. Not cheap.
A good friend of mine had an 81 (or 82) 280 with the Isuzu diesel. Factory added turbocharger. The oil line to the turbo broke, and pumped all the oil out in a very short order, toasting the engine.

He had a new Isuzu factory turbo put in (for over $10,000). It required a new doghouse, higher than original. The new engine/turbo was quite an improvement over the original one in power and got improved milage too.

I sold it for him to someone here on the net a few years ago. I assume it is still out there, humming along.
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Old 01-18-2013, 01:43 PM   #13
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that kind of mileage is awesome. I didn't know they got as much as 15. My 454 got 7 to 8. Now if Diesel would only cost what regular does, you all would be doing great.
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Old 01-18-2013, 06:31 PM   #14
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Hi all:

I posted this rig in the MoHo's for sale thread a while back. Dan stated I was better off with the 310 without the tag for the extra 1.5 feet. I'm saddened to hear about the father, as I was going to phone and see if the owner was willing to chat and answer a few of my questions about my 310 and the diesel. I figuered almost 30 years of ownership he would know a thing or two.

Shepherd, look for a PM from me.
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