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Old 06-18-2015, 07:32 PM   #1
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Advice with manual trans.

I just scored a 5 speed manual transmission with overdrive. It is a Dana 6453 that they used in M800 series 5 ton trucks. Now almost all the trucks I see have automatics. It has a SAE #2 bell housing I believe. It is unused since being overhauled. How difficult would this be to install behind my DT408 or DT466?

I know we have members that served in the military. Did any of you drive a truck with this transmission? Input please.


I won't pick it up until my trip to get my bus in July. This is a picture on the same unit from Boyce Equipment.



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Old 06-18-2015, 08:29 PM   #2
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I know we have prior members that served in the military. Did any of you drive a truck with this transmission? Input please.
I TC'd (truck commander aka "shotgun") the M818 that was the prime mover for our jump TOC when I was in the Army Guard. After going through 3 tractors, because of parts issues, we managed to limp into Ft Drum on fumes. It's pretty rock-solid and maintained highway speeds hauling a 6 ton shop-trailer along I-81
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Old 06-18-2015, 08:43 PM   #3
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I don't have the same HP that you did. I hope to add some juice to the engine.

Were any of the parts issues related to the transmission?
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Old 06-19-2015, 06:19 AM   #4
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I don't have the same HP that you did. I hope to add some juice to the engine.

Were any of the parts issues related to the transmission?
One wouldn't get out of first, the first one had torque issues, but I want to emphasize more along the lines of parts availability, wear, and age. That Guard unit had trucks so old that the dataplates said "Kaiser-Willy's XM-818". The Army's supply chain had phased out parts for M800 series trucks, so the Guard was stuck with what was left in the supply system or "creative adaptation".
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Old 06-19-2015, 11:57 AM   #5
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One wouldn't get out of first, the first one had torque issues, but I want to emphasize more along the lines of parts availability, wear, and age. That Guard unit had trucks so old that the dataplates said "Kaiser-Willy's XM-818". The Army's supply chain had phased out parts for M800 series trucks, so the Guard was stuck with what was left in the supply system or "creative adaptation".

OK, thanks. This has a rebuild date of 1991. Maybe it came out of one of your trucks.

I need to see if this swap is even possible. I have zero knowledge of standard transmission parts. At least it has a #2 housing so that's a good start. At least I think it does.
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Old 06-19-2015, 02:06 PM   #6
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Same trans I'm looking at swapping.
The one I'm looking at has the sae#2 housing. I'm fairly certain they all do. I think the flywheel housing is a standardized part with fixed dimensions so you shouldn't have to worry much about that.

I'm not sure if you have a flywheel on the dt or not(My IDI does even though it is an auto).

The only thing that I seen that might be problematic is the input shaft. They had 3 pages of different options so you'll have to see if the one you have will work.

For me, it seems like a good option for a manual transmission. The only negative is I think the gear splits are kind of broad. I figured it up for my bus with a 5.57 rear gear, shifting at the 3500 governed speed, it would end up being about a 1500 rpm split. That's alright for me because torque peak is at 1400 rpm, so I have some wiggle room on the top and bottom.

Your engine, however, is only governed to 2400. Shifting at governed speed, your rpm split will be less than mine(closer to 1000). But with peak torque at 1300, I think the gear split is too big for your engine's power band. If it was me, I'd try and find something with more gears.
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Old 06-19-2015, 02:53 PM   #7
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My AT545 gears are 3.45:1, 2.25:1, 1.41:1, 1.00:1.

The Dana is 6.07:1, 3.40:1, 1.79:1, 1.00:1, .78:1.

I will try to bump the HP and learn to shift fast or faster.
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Old 06-19-2015, 09:26 PM   #8
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bet it is a crash box, no synchronizers, so you will be shifting slower and you will be changing the flywheel since the one for automatic transmissions is lighter and has no clutch surface
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Old 06-19-2015, 11:47 PM   #9
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Speaking of turning up power does anyone know a good injection pump shop that can rework the old mechanical pumps and nozzle?
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Old 06-20-2015, 02:14 AM   #10
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I've heard Oregon Fuel Injection has a good reputation.
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