Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 02-05-2018, 01:10 PM   #21
Rivet Master
 
Keyair's Avatar

 
1984 34.5' Airstream 345
Foothill Ranch , California
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 4,587
Images: 1
Quote:
Originally Posted by martin300662 View Post
I get the impression the thread has deviated somewhat from I think was it's intended scope of documenting which diesel to pick and how to swap if you are doing a conversion.

Justifying the conversion vs dropping in a replacement 454 seems a totally different subject to me.
Spot on, Martin.

I do believe in people posting their opinions tho, and these will be a footnote to the top 6 posts that I have reserved for my original idea of documenting the actual diesel conversions...
I have written to the Admins, but no response yet.

On the subject of costs for a Diesel swap, I think there are two extremes and lots of space between to fill to suit your budget and skillset!

Option 1:
Buy a Diesel engine of your choice, rebuilt or needing no work, add a transmission that will work, drop that at a specialist in doing swaps and let them handle it. Most likely these places can furnish an engine and trans, and give you options.
My best guess is that the hardware will be $15k and $25k, and the install maybe $10k.

Option 2:
Buy a good used Diesel engine and transmission for $4k to $10k and do the same as option 1. I am seeing a guy on Ebay who does brisk business parting out Diesel school buses, etc, and ships you the whole setup, as a "Frame-Cut" for under $5k.

Option 3:
This is what many have done. Buy a used Diesel diesel or rebuilt, like Option #1, or 2, add transmission, and put it in yourself. My guess would be you will be between $7k and $12k.

Option 4:
This is me.... and my cross to bear...
Buy a used engine(Cummins 12v for $600), strip, assess, and rebuild it, doing upgrades to engine, injection, exhaust, turbo, intake, Intercooler, and suit your power needs(+ $3000 ish).
Find a used transmission(Prob Allison 5 or 6 speed for $1500) rebuild myself($500/$1000).
Add fueling, cooling and controls as needed, and install myself.
My best guess is that I will be in the $7/8k range for a totally built out Cummins Diesel setup, with 350hp and 800ftlb of torque that will do between 12mpg and 16mpg in similar usage, which is double the 454, double the torque, and outlast me.
For the record, I have a receipts for the Engine replacement in my MH from 2008, and Trans rebuild in 2006, and they total almost $15000.

The reason for this thread is to document how people have done it, what they used, the problems and solutions.
We all then have a reference point, so we can understand the choices, costs, and make decisions.
__________________

__________________
My name is Steve.... and I am an Alumaholic!
Working in my Garage is like playing TETRIS with Tools!
Keyair is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-05-2018, 02:02 PM   #22
Rivet Master
 
Keyair's Avatar

 
1984 34.5' Airstream 345
Foothill Ranch , California
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 4,587
Images: 1
Thanks Mayco!

Really, I'm just a "Johnny come lately" to this... and freely admit that my swap is in the distance...

However, I am a research monster, and believe I have gathered a lot of info, mainly on Cummins fitment.

I believe that will be a big part of this thread simply because its been done, its documented, and makes lots of sense...

Choctawmel has proved to be an absolute BEAST with his swap... I'm am still amazed at his drive and energy despite all odds! Kudos!!!!
I am sure he will have lots of do's and don'ts to add!

GWBaker before him, who appears to be long gone from this community.... did something really special, and there is much to be gleaned from his thread. I wonder where his motorhome is these days!
Also, I believe someone has a converted Funeral Coach with a Cummins in... Smartstream or Spicestream???

Dave(Wxbouy), posted pics of his OEM Cummins 345 a few years back and now I actually know what I am looking at/for the info will be invaluable.

I wish I had known, posted what I now know, like the Cummins needing a specific exhaust manifold that tucks the turbo in tight to the engine, in either top, or under slung configuration. The stock "Pickup" exhaust pushs the Turbo outbourd to far and hits the floor frame of the MH, as Choctawmel will attest!

Cole3444's Cummins converted 310 is amazing too..... whoever did the conversion, knew what they were doing and it looks a carbon copy of the OEM Cummins.

In addition, the two known Duramax conversions will add options too, and I hope to get info from at least one of the owners, that I can add to documentation.
__________________

__________________
My name is Steve.... and I am an Alumaholic!
Working in my Garage is like playing TETRIS with Tools!
Keyair is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-05-2018, 02:09 PM   #23
Dazed and Confused
 
Isuzusweet's Avatar
 
Currently Looking...
1983 31' Airstream310
Hillsburgh , Ontario
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 3,805
I would just like to add a caveat to what info I have posted before.
FYI before plonking down some dough-ray-me on a nice Isuzu 6 cylinder or even a Cummins, make sure you know what application it came out of. An excavator Isuzu 6bd1T is different to one out of a truck. The excavator engine is designed to run at one rpm only; it is not designed for variable rpms.
Some applications of the Cummins 6bt's are the same way.
Be very carefully when choosing your diesel.
I'm sure someone can explain the differences far better than I can.
Cheers
Sidekick Tony
__________________
Per Mare, Per Terram and may all your campaigns be successful.

ďItís a recession when your neighbor loses his job; itís a depression when you lose your own.Ē "Harry S Truman"
Isuzusweet is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-05-2018, 04:27 PM   #24
Rivet Master
 
Smartstream's Avatar

 
1982 28' Airstream 280
Port Angeles , Washington
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 1,826
I guess I should put my 2 cents worth. The last gas to diesel conversion I did was about 10 years ago. I put an "A" series Cummins 6 cylinder turbo in my 1938 Ford COE truck. The biggest issue is making it fit. Next is mating to transmission unless of course you are using an engine/transmission package. The small stuff like clutch and throttle linkage, radiator, wiring and a return fuel line, can be challenging. The biggie is will it fit.

Tony I don't believe there is much difference between a highway and an industrial engine, maybe a little tuning in the fuel pump but not much in the engine internals.

The "B" series Cummins is an inviting swap because in addition to being a great engine, they are cheap and plentiful. We know the Isuzu fits but I don't know if you picked one up from a cab forward truck today it would have the same turbo/exhaust fitting as the units that Airstream used. I might even look at a 4 cylinder because you might find one that puts out power comparable to the 454. I know that many here have "Tim Taylor" syndrome needing more power. I would caution here something learned playing with older cars and trucks, you can make it go faster but you still have to make it stop. I don't see many here bragging about the brakes on their P-30.

One last thing, such a swap can be fun and challenging if you are in to that kind of thing. And very rewarding if you are successful.
__________________
Cheers, Dan
________________________________________


"Socialist governments traditionally do make a financial mess. They always run out of other people's money. It's quite a characteristic of them."
~ Margaret Thatcher ~
Smartstream is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-05-2018, 04:58 PM   #25
Rivet Master
 
bobmiller1's Avatar

 
2005 34' Classic S/O
2006 39' Land Yacht 396 XL
north blenheim , New York
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 2,208
OK, time to add my position....I am acquiring the parts for my conversion for next winter. Other than the granite countertops/farm sink/ electrically operated dinette table, the only other item is the Detroit/Allison conversion which will be during the third year, body/clearcoat will be the fourth year, God willing, Regards, Bob
bobmiller1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-05-2018, 05:11 PM   #26
Rivet Master
 
Waipio Rim's Avatar
 
1984 31' Airstream310
Honokaa , Hawaii
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 898
One more sidebar - a conversion like this with all the bugs worked out will add a bunch of value to the coach. It could be a good investment.
Waipio Rim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-05-2018, 06:40 PM   #27
Keen amature
 
martin300662's Avatar

 
1975 20' Argosy 20
Chestfield , Kent
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 2,892
I have to ask....has anyone considered buying a 7.5ton, mid 2000's NQR and swapping the drive train?
martin300662 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-05-2018, 07:02 PM   #28
Rivet Master
 
Keyair's Avatar

 
1984 34.5' Airstream 345
Foothill Ranch , California
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 4,587
Images: 1
Iíll let you take the lead on that one Martin... Add sound of Keyairís chainmail gauntlet hitting the ground.....
__________________
My name is Steve.... and I am an Alumaholic!
Working in my Garage is like playing TETRIS with Tools!
Keyair is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-05-2018, 09:31 PM   #29
Rivet Master
 
Smartstream's Avatar

 
1982 28' Airstream 280
Port Angeles , Washington
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 1,826
NQR's are the Isuzu model of cab over box truck used frequently for local deliveries. Many of them carry GM or Chevy NPR badging. The shorter 12'-16' box run a 4 cylinder Isuzu making up to 215 hp while the longer versions run the 6 cylinder Isuzu which is the later version of the engine in our mohos.
__________________
Cheers, Dan
________________________________________


"Socialist governments traditionally do make a financial mess. They always run out of other people's money. It's quite a characteristic of them."
~ Margaret Thatcher ~
Smartstream is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-05-2018, 09:57 PM   #30
4 Rivet Member
 
bibbs's Avatar
 
1977 Argosy Minuet 6.0 Metre
1973 21' Globetrotter
1975 26' Argosy 26
Vista , California
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 476
I love this conversion conversation !
bibbs is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-05-2018, 11:01 PM   #31
Rivet Master
 
Keyair's Avatar

 
1984 34.5' Airstream 345
Foothill Ranch , California
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 4,587
Images: 1
I have been talking to a Guy in Holland for months.
Jos is planning to post his Airstream Motorhome build, a 1980 280 I think, which is pretty amazing and inspirational.
Custom sheet metal work outside, a Duramax, and now he is working on the interior to carry his vintage, but custom Vincent motorcycle. What I have seen so far made me beg him to post his ongoing Journey.
His Duramax install looks amazing too, and I am sure he will have input here too!
__________________
My name is Steve.... and I am an Alumaholic!
Working in my Garage is like playing TETRIS with Tools!
Keyair is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-2018, 05:57 AM   #32
Keen amature
 
martin300662's Avatar

 
1975 20' Argosy 20
Chestfield , Kent
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 2,892
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smartstream View Post
NQR's are the Isuzu model of cab over box truck used frequently for local deliveries. Many of them carry GM or Chevy NPR badging. The shorter 12'-16' box run a 4 cylinder Isuzu making up to 215 hp while the longer versions run the 6 cylinder Isuzu which is the later version of the engine in our mohos.
There is a reason for the suggestion. In UK/EU diesels in general have gone into a very sharp decline in the last year (think 60% reduction in new car sales) driven by the introduction of emission based vehicle tax (one of the reasons for VWgate....reduced declared emissions means vastly lower annual taxation). More to the point the mid 2000's NQR75 (the 15000lb/7.5ton rated version) costs a lot to run as a commercial vehicle which basically means there are a glut of them in UK/EU as they are taken off the road; sold only for spares or export. A quick search on ebay.co.uk throws up running/driving but not longer UK road legal (or rather not economic to use on the road in the UK) for $1000-4000, including one with a horse box body that has only done 40,000 miles but is still being 'scrapped'. From Steve's description of what is allowed to meet emissions in the US, these should still be compliant and you could have a perfectly good, complete donor to make sure you have everything for the swap????
martin300662 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-2018, 06:10 AM   #33
Rivet Master
 
Keyair's Avatar

 
1984 34.5' Airstream 345
Foothill Ranch , California
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 4,587
Images: 1
Good points Martin.
I do not know if this setup is/was available in the USA. If so, the same rules that are sending them to the scrapper are not in force here.
Importing one should not fly, for cost and compliance reasons.
However, the weight and capacity would be about right for a conversion in the EU.

I failed to mention another plus for the Cummins and Duramax conversion here... commonality. Both of these engines are in pickups, and as a result, parts and knowledgeable service facilities are about everywhere.
I would say the Cummins has the edge here, as it has been around longer, is probably more common, and as a result, cheaper to buy.
__________________
My name is Steve.... and I am an Alumaholic!
Working in my Garage is like playing TETRIS with Tools!
Keyair is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-2018, 08:12 AM   #34
Dazed and Confused
 
Isuzusweet's Avatar
 
Currently Looking...
1983 31' Airstream310
Hillsburgh , Ontario
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 3,805
Quote:
Originally Posted by Keyair View Post

I failed to mention another plus for the Cummins and Duramax conversion here... commonality. Both of these engines are in pickups, and as a result, parts and knowledgeable service facilities are about everywhere.
I would say the Cummins has the edge here, as it has been around longer, is probably more common, and as a result, cheaper to buy.
The other upside to buying a motor tranny combo already in a truck is any possible computer crap, like TPS is already there with wiring harness. The downside is, should you decide to forgo any sensor or device, it can end up throwing codes like crazy, throwing the rig into limp home mode all the time; which is what happened to the Duramax V8 swap I know of.

BTW I did mean fuel delivery and or governor differences with industrial versus consumer diesel engines.......but the Japanese, they have a nasty tendency to design different, even though it looks the same on the outside; trust me, the differences of Toyota Tercels from 87-89 was incredible. Even mid year engine change in 88 had me scratching my head.

Cheers
Sidekick Tony
__________________
Per Mare, Per Terram and may all your campaigns be successful.

ďItís a recession when your neighbor loses his job; itís a depression when you lose your own.Ē "Harry S Truman"
Isuzusweet is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-2018, 09:27 AM   #35
Rivet Master
 
Keyair's Avatar

 
1984 34.5' Airstream 345
Foothill Ranch , California
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 4,587
Images: 1
Yup, agreed.
Personally, my choice for having the motor completely mechanically injected.
The Cummins 12v Motor I chose apparently needs only 2 electrical connections to run. Starter(I suspect actually 2, power and trigger) and ignition controlled power to the fuel cutoff solenoid on the injection pump.

This is huge for me, and makes integration pretty simple. Of course, the reality is more, with tach, grid heater, temp sender and maybe block heater.
Down side is no code reader simplicity when something does go wrong.

Transmission choice is something Iím working on. I want lockup torque converter, Overdrive and maybe Double overdrive.
Decisions decisions!
__________________
My name is Steve.... and I am an Alumaholic!
Working in my Garage is like playing TETRIS with Tools!
Keyair is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-2018, 10:02 AM   #36
Rivet Master
 
bkahler's Avatar

 
1974 20' Argosy 20
Richmond , Kentucky
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 8,145
Quote:
Originally Posted by Keyair View Post
..... Transmission choice is something Iím working on. I want lockup torque converter, Overdrive and maybe Double overdrive.
Decisions decisions!
Which leads to the question about your 4L80e sitting in mothballs

I still have the brake drum and associated hardware slated to ship to CA. Do you still need those components?
__________________
Air forums # 1674
1974 20' Argosy Motor Home
1974 31' Excella trailer (parting out, as of 4/1/2015 I have wheels, brake drums, windows & holding tanks left to sell)
bkahler is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-2018, 10:25 AM   #37
Rivet Master
 
Keyair's Avatar

 
1984 34.5' Airstream 345
Foothill Ranch , California
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 4,587
Images: 1
Yes please.
I was just waiting patiently for you to find them, a box, and tell me what I owe ya!
It maybe that the 4L80E goes in first, behind the 454, and if that is the case, it will need to have the brake drum.
When I rebuild it, it will have beefy components put in, and I am reading that the TC needs to be Diesel specific.
__________________
My name is Steve.... and I am an Alumaholic!
Working in my Garage is like playing TETRIS with Tools!
Keyair is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-06-2018, 07:21 PM   #38
Rivet Master
 
Keyair's Avatar

 
1984 34.5' Airstream 345
Foothill Ranch , California
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 4,587
Images: 1
Made contact with Admin, and she says will give me editing rights soon...

Get READY!!!!!
I got a LOT of info to post!!!!
__________________
My name is Steve.... and I am an Alumaholic!
Working in my Garage is like playing TETRIS with Tools!
Keyair is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-2018, 12:08 AM   #39
Rivet Master
 
Keyair's Avatar

 
1984 34.5' Airstream 345
Foothill Ranch , California
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 4,587
Images: 1
Putting a Diesel in your Motorhome.

Can one of you Airstream OEM Isuzu boys confirm some info about that original motor?
What is the motor model?
Original spec, power numbers in NA, and the optional Turbo?
Transmission models fitted behind these engines?
Mpg experienced?
Any other info that is important for people to know?
Anyone that can post or send me pictures of the motor installed I can post?
Thanks!
__________________
My name is Steve.... and I am an Alumaholic!
Working in my Garage is like playing TETRIS with Tools!
Keyair is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-07-2018, 04:11 PM   #40
Rivet Master
 
Keyair's Avatar

 
1984 34.5' Airstream 345
Foothill Ranch , California
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 4,587
Images: 1
Edited and added a ton of info and links, mainly Cummins related, but much, much more to come!
__________________

__________________
My name is Steve.... and I am an Alumaholic!
Working in my Garage is like playing TETRIS with Tools!
Keyair is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
HELP! Accidentally putting E-85 instead of diesel in AI roadmama Sprinter and B-van Forum 66 11-29-2015 05:31 AM
Another reason to keep your Airstream Diesel Motorhome frankandsue Airstream Motorhome Forums 5 09-23-2010 06:21 AM
Putting AS on Blocks/ Electric brake conversion ? airhead Axles 4 06-27-2004 03:52 PM
Putting my trailer undercover Stefrobrts Our Community 32 02-05-2004 08:57 AM
Putting in new carpet wardster All Argosy Trailers 1 02-03-2004 12:02 PM


Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by the Airstream, Inc. or any of its affiliates. Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 09:34 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.