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Old 03-16-2019, 09:30 AM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Mar 2019
Posts: 31
Cummins 8.3 power increase question

I test drove a nice bluebird around a 2000 a few days ago that fit my basic requirements, rear engine, big engine, my order of preference was dt466 then Cummins then possibly cat, I've heard cat is more likely to have issues and they are more expensive to deal with, I noticed the Cummins was electronically controlled mechanical ip, not bad since I plan to convert to wvo and I have most of the parts that were removed from a dodge pickup to convert. The other required I has was allison 3060 with highway gears, this seems to rule out any mechanical dt466, I'm not sure about converting the Cummins to full mechanical as far as computer interfaces go, especially with the transmission, and possibly drive by wire conversion, I didn't look for a throttle cable.

The long and short of it, this bus seems to have the 250 or 260 hp engine with 660lb ft of torque, great for economy, but I'd like to be able to tow a 10,000# trailer with a fully loaded bus at around 33,000#, initially I thought I could just turn the engine up, unfortunately after researching it seems the lower power engines also have lower grade internals, being the older million mile engine per Cummins statement, not the newer 500,000 mile engine, I assume the internals aren't that much of an issue, still, I'd like to know if there is any consensus or long term experience with power upgrades on these engines, probably mid level 800-900lb ft of torque, off the top of my head the transmission is treated for 950 and the engines come with up to 1150 stock year dependant

Thanks in advance.

Eddited... oops, after posting I found the Cummins specific forum, I apologize for the misplacement
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Old 03-16-2019, 12:47 PM   #2
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Jun 2018
Location: Pennsylvania
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Napabavarian View Post
I test drove a nice bluebird around a 2000 a few days ago that fit my basic requirements, rear engine, big engine, my order of preference was dt466 then Cummins then possibly cat, I've heard cat is more likely to have issues and they are more expensive to deal with, I noticed the Cummins was electronically controlled mechanical ip, not bad since I plan to convert to wvo and I have most of the parts that were removed from a dodge pickup to convert. The other required I has was allison 3060 with highway gears, this seems to rule out any mechanical dt466, I'm not sure about converting the Cummins to full mechanical as far as computer interfaces go, especially with the transmission, and possibly drive by wire conversion, I didn't look for a throttle cable.

The long and short of it, this bus seems to have the 250 or 260 hp engine with 660lb ft of torque, great for economy, but I'd like to be able to tow a 10,000# trailer with a fully loaded bus at around 33,000#, initially I thought I could just turn the engine up, unfortunately after researching it seems the lower power engines also have lower grade internals, being the older million mile engine per Cummins statement, not the newer 500,000 mile engine, I assume the internals aren't that much of an issue, still, I'd like to know if there is any consensus or long term experience with power upgrades on these engines, probably mid level 800-900lb ft of torque, off the top of my head the transmission is treated for 950 and the engines come with up to 1150 stock year dependant

Thanks in advance.

Eddited... oops, after posting I found the Cummins specific forum, I apologize for the misplacement
I'm not sure if converting an all electronic engine to mechanical is possible. I know if it is, it will cost you more than the bus is worth. The newer electronic engines have stricter tolerances to produce more efficient power. Even if done properly, they probably couldn't handle wvo very well.
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Old 03-16-2019, 12:58 PM   #3
Bus Geek
 
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the allison part is easy... there are throttle boxes which can take a pedal-cable movement and convert to either J-1939 (electronic engine interface) or voltage-divider-style. (CAT-Throttle)..


the 3000 series electronic transmissions were used behind mechanical engines in their first generations.. with the controls on the 3000 and 1000/2000 being very similar, the aftermarket has an aray of products outr built for the guys swapping out the crappy dodge transmissions for allisons behind cummins 6BT's in the pre-98 pickups.. plus there are ford guys replacing IDI engines with 4BT's in OBS trucks.. and stuffiong allison 1000s behind them... makes for a nice amount of throttle parts for mechanical engines to electronic allison transmissions..


-Christopher
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Old 03-16-2019, 01:16 PM   #4
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kinson View Post
I'm not sure if converting an all electronic engine to mechanical is possible. I know if it is, it will cost you more than the bus is worth. The newer electronic engines have stricter tolerances to produce more efficient power. Even if done properly, they probably couldn't handle wvo very well.
This appeared to be an electronically controlled mechanical ip similar to the gm 6.5 and early vw tdi, I believe late 90s early 2000s dodge pickups as well, the injection method is mechanical however it the ip is electronically controlled allowing more parameters to be monitored, it can reduce power and go into limp mode to protect the engine if problems arise. I've heard mixed reviews about electronic engines on wvo, properly set up with clean dry oil power strokes seem to love it and there have been a few duramax conversions, apparently a fellow in Portland got quite a few years under his belt, the trick is always wait until everything is good and hot to switch over, and clean dry oil.
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Old 03-16-2019, 05:08 PM   #5
Skoolie
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Napabavarian View Post
This appeared to be an electronically controlled mechanical ip similar to the gm 6.5 and early vw tdi, I believe late 90s early 2000s dodge pickups as well, the injection method is mechanical however it the ip is electronically controlled allowing more parameters to be monitored, it can reduce power and go into limp mode to protect the engine if problems arise. I've heard mixed reviews about electronic engines on wvo, properly set up with clean dry oil power strokes seem to love it and there have been a few duramax conversions, apparently a fellow in Portland got quite a few years under his belt, the trick is always wait until everything is good and hot to switch over, and clean dry oil.
ISC's of that era used a Cummins Accumulator Pump System (CAPS). Is that what you are talking about? I remember coming to the conclusion that this system is much more failure-prone than just the mechanical pump. Is it similar to the previous model's Bosch pump? I'd be all for its viability for wvo as I want to explore that route myself. Be picky about your oil, as you say, and use a two tank system. I have seen plenty of people try it on newer engines, even series 60's. The long-term success rate and duplicating that success rate are up in the air.
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Old 03-16-2019, 06:05 PM   #6
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kinson View Post
ISC's of that era used a Cummins Accumulator Pump System (CAPS). Is that what you are talking about? I remember coming to the conclusion that this system is much more failure-prone than just the mechanical pump. Is it similar to the previous model's Bosch pump? I'd be all for its viability for wvo as I want to explore that route myself. Be picky about your oil, as you say, and use a two tank system. I have seen plenty of people try it on newer engines, even series 60's. The long-term success rate and duplicating that success rate are up in the air.
That would be it, we have a great supply of oil from a hospital that changes out frequently and titrates around 2-3, I handed it over to a friend when I moved away but there is plenty to go around, at one point I had 12 or 16 totes...

It is the caps pump, for the price of replacement one could just order a couple of every failure prone component and a diagnostic computer to deal with issues as the arise, no real need to start over for ten grand, a rebuilt p pump plus core charge from the looks of it would run $2000-3000 alone.
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Old 03-16-2019, 07:34 PM   #7
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So the CAPS pump is more prone to failure in normal conditions. Adding more viscous fuel might be an issue. There is a lift pump that works during and 30 seconds after starting. When it shuts off, the only thing sucking fuel from the tank is the CAPS pump. Some people bypass that lift pump to provide positive fuel pressure to the CAPS pump nonstop. This CAPS pump is rotary, which does not perform as well as the inline Bosch pumps of older models.


The new pumps are more complex and more expensive to fix/replace. I'd assume the same goes for the injectors. Both of these are the problem areas of running alternative fuels. There is a kit to convert from CAPS to Bosch.... for $8k.
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Old 03-16-2019, 10:53 PM   #8
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kinson View Post
So the CAPS pump is more prone to failure in normal conditions. Adding more viscous fuel might be an issue. There is a lift pump that works during and 30 seconds after starting. When it shuts off, the only thing sucking fuel from the tank is the CAPS pump. Some people bypass that lift pump to provide positive fuel pressure to the CAPS pump nonstop. This CAPS pump is rotary, which does not perform as well as the inline Bosch pumps of older models.


The new pumps are more complex and more expensive to fix/replace. I'd assume the same goes for the injectors. Both of these are the problem areas of running alternative fuels. There is a kit to convert from CAPS to Bosch.... for $8k.

Ro-Ta-Ray ya say? I'd say, no way! And for eight grand I'd buy 2 spare parts busses. It isn't totally out of the question if I can get the space. From my knowledge the rotary pumps in v8 idi 6.2/6.5/6.9/7.3 are very temperature sensitive with wvo, too low and they die from viscosity, too high and the heat kills them, and max temp isn't that high! If it was 200 one could simply use a coolant plate heater and be safe, but I believe it was 160 or so max, this is from memory and years ago. The inline Bosch m/mw/p pumps seem almost indestructible with clean dry oil, some even try one tank systems. I got one after it died, too bad it burned in the napa fires, a full teardown would have been fun, at 400,000 miles on an om603 6 cylinder the fuel its self may not have been the problem. As far as injectors, I believe they are the same as full mechanical, or at least similar, pressurize to a set level and they pop open spraying fuel. We have rebuilt a few with great results, super simple with the right tools, essentially a hydraulic Jack pump with a pressure gauge and the right replacement nozzles and shims, I found some already done on Ebay for $90 a pop to fit the 8.3.
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Old 03-17-2019, 12:32 PM   #9
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Mar 2019
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This may not be so bad, after a bit of searching I found core c8.3 engines as low as $1500, one for $750 but no photo so I don't know if it is complete, an infrared kit seems to fun $1000-1500, might as well get the IP overhauled and fresh injectors, so with surprises you get a fresh engine with more power for $5000-6000 and can still sell the old one to someone in need, half the price of the p pump kit and an outright bare p pump with injector lines would run $3000, not sure what else you would need to do it yourself.
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Old 03-18-2019, 08:12 AM   #10
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Just a question.

How many gallons of free wvo do you have to use until you've saved enough on fuel costs to eat the cost of the new injection pump?

WVO in a newer engine doesn't make much sense to me really. The only people I've seen that truly saved money on wvo, were those that had an inline pump and had no value for the time they spent picking up and processing the oil.

If you really want to utilize wvo, burn it in an oil fired furnace for heat.
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