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Old 05-31-2015, 01:59 AM   #11
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Thanks for all the useful information yall. I didnt mean for this to be a pissing match over which one is best. I just wanted to get an idea which one would fit my situation better, and which ones may have glaring faults.

Does anyone know if the DT466 is an overhead cam, or pushrod design?

I'm definitely leaning towards the DT for repair and rebuildability. I can probably fix a diesel, but not if I have to take it out of the vehicle.

For all who desperatley want to know, I was cruising some forums of schools buying buses (to actually haul kids), some of whom complained of repeated failures of the DT466. This seems to be isolated.

I read a lot more about repeated failures of the Cummins 5.9 due to a $40 fuel lift pump dying, causing the $2000 injector pump to kill its self for lack of lubrication. This seems like a terrible design. Sure enough, the bus I was most interested in buying had a Cummins 5.9, and in the written history were two engine replacements within a couple years. It wasn't just that one. On the same auction site, I see at least three of the same buses for sale listing multiple engine and/or transmission replacements. That's exactly what I'm trying to avoid, so it made me nervous.

Also, I haven't heard anyone mention Detroit motors. I like the simplicity of the old 2-stroke models, but haven't seen skoolies with em. what's the deal?
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Old 05-31-2015, 09:11 AM   #12
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The old detroits are too expensive. They chug fuel, leak oil, an dgood luck finding anyone to service one. If a rebuild were in order you'd better have many thousands.
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Old 05-31-2015, 11:23 AM   #13
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a few weeks back there was a thomas transit bus up in boisi idaho craigslist, it had a 5 speed.

I talked to the man but someone had put some cash down on it.

it was a mid 80's bus with a cummins
there was one listed a year back down in florida it was a gasoline 427 with a 6 speed, it was transit style.
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Old 06-01-2015, 11:30 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ProtoBuzz View Post
I read a lot more about repeated failures of the Cummins 5.9 due to a $40 fuel lift pump dying, causing the $2000 injector pump to kill its self for lack of lubrication. This seems like a terrible design. Sure enough, the bus I was most interested in buying had a Cummins 5.9, and in the written history were two engine replacements within a couple years. It wasn't just that one. On the same auction site, I see at least three of the same buses for sale listing multiple engine and/or transmission replacements. That's exactly what I'm trying to avoid, so it made me nervous.
All of the bluebirds we have turn on the check engine light when it loses fuel pressure. It's also not that hard(and I highly recommend it) to put a simple fuel pressure gauge in after the secondary filter. If that's out of your budget it's cheaper to put an idiot light in with a simple pressure switch in the same place.

All the suggestions here so far are good. The biggest thing you should look for is how well they were maintained. DT466/DT360, 6BT/ISB , T444E, 3126, etc. are all good engines if maintained correctly. If all were maintained evenly then the above is the order I'd put them in, but prior MAINTENANCE is king.
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Old 06-01-2015, 11:56 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ProtoBuzz View Post
I'm definitely leaning towards the DT for repair and rebuildability. I can probably fix a diesel, but not if I have to take it out of the vehicle.
See EastCoastCB's previous post:
Quote:
Originally Posted by EastCoastCB View Post
The DT can at least be rebuilt in-frame unlike the 5.9
All DT's (DT360, DT408, DT466, DT530) are designed so that they can be rebuilt without removing the engine from the vehicle.

So, to answer the question...
Quote:
Originally Posted by ProtoBuzz View Post
Does anyone know if the DT466 is an overhead cam, or pushrod design?
Does it even matter whether it is pushrod or overhead cam? Either way, it's designed to be in-frame overhauled.

However, a 2 second search on Google for, "dt466 pushrod" quickly showed it uses pushrods.
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Old 06-02-2015, 03:25 AM   #16
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I had never worked on diesels before until a few months ago, I fixed a 2cyl diesel volvo-penta boat motor that had been underwater for years. The pushrod design made it a piece of cake to inspect and rebuild. I'm sure I could do the same job on a pushrod 6cyl, but I haven't dealt with anything OHC other than bikes and mowers, and found OHC to be a pain to work on, and less space efficient to boot. So yeah, I have a preference for pushrod unless I need high revs.
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Old 06-02-2015, 12:06 PM   #17
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Anyone that says a DT 360, DT466, or a DT530 is a bad engine is a idiot that has no clue what they are talking about. Plain and simple.

They are simply the best engines available.

Other great engines are the pre 97 5.9 and 8.3 Cummins.

Cat engines are the costly boat anchors.

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Old 06-02-2015, 04:35 PM   #18
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Check out the buses I just found on craigslist in the Classified section, several
with 8.3 Cummins. CROWN BUS+BLUEBIRD TC 2000+ GILLIG BUS
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Old 06-05-2015, 03:42 AM   #19
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Reading this horror-show of a thread makes me very nervous about buying the ISB5.9. The majority of posters here complain of lift pump failure causing injector pump failure, but many also report needing engine replacement. How can an injector pump failure warrant engine replacement? Any opinions on these people's concerns?

5.9 ISB Injection & Lift Pump Failures - School Bus Fleet Magazine Forums
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Old 06-05-2015, 12:45 PM   #20
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Most of the lift pump, injector pump, and injector failure in most buses has not been due to design issues specifically or a problem from Cummins.

Most of the problems lie directly with the advent of bio-blended fuels.

I know of one school district that is 100% Cummins and they budgeted the failure of at least five fuel systems per year. Their failure rate went from virtually zero to 10% of the fleet when the school was mandated to run 20% bio-blended diesel.

The bio-blended fuel combined with the low sulfur means there is virtually no lubricity left in the fuel. Adding to the problem is the chemical that keeps the bio suspended in the diesel is hydroscopic and you end up with the perfect storm to ruin diesel engine fuel systems.

They have solved the problem of fuel system failures by adding to their fuel source TRC's Diesel PEP with AAT. http://www.texasrefinery.com/assets/...technology.pdf

They have not had one fuel system failure in the last four years.

Will the Cummins fuel system fail? Probably.

Is the Cummins 5.9/ISB any worse or any better than any other engine from Cummins or any other manufacturer? No.

It all comes down to getting the freshest fuel possible, keep the water separated so the water doesn't go through the pump or injectors, and add some sort of additive that restores some of the lubricity back into the fuel.
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