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Old 01-29-2009, 03:15 PM   #1
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Which engine?

I've come across 3 84 pass. buses that may be at a good price. One has the Cummins 5.9 (which many of you have and like). One has the 8.3 Cummins (a powerhouse?) and one has the 8.2 Detroit. We know about the fuel economy (in relative terms) of the 5.9. Greg of Florida church bus seems to always point out whenever he has an 8.2 Detroit that it will get 10-12 miles per gallon. The 8.3 speaks for itself I presume. If all are in good working order....which would our esteemed, intelligent, erudite and of course above average looking contributors to this wonderful forum prefer? I'm going to drive all 3 just because I can't pass up the opportunity to drive such a big bus. I'll post afterwords.
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Old 01-29-2009, 05:42 PM   #2
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Re: Which engine?

In order of preference:
8.3 Cummins
5.9 Cummins
Another bus.
8.2 Detroit.
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Old 01-29-2009, 08:50 PM   #3
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Re: Which engine?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jarlaxle
In order of preference:
8.3 Cummins
5.9 Cummins
Another bus.
8.2 Detroit.

yep
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Old 01-29-2009, 11:36 PM   #4
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Re: Which engine?

Yup
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Old 01-30-2009, 10:59 AM   #5
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Re: Which engine?

I stopped and talked with the local bus guy. Same answer. He said if I had an 8.2 Detroit...."don't even drive by my shop" Well thanks for the replies. I'm working on another harebrained idea and when I get enough bourbon in me (so the laughter won't weaken my resolve) I'll start a new thread and get the group feedback.

Not the thread topic, but Julie have been the bus for about 8 mos. Temps here in W. Texas at night have been in the mid teens regularly (8 F the other morning,not the frigid north I know) and we are snug with just our catalytic heater and one electric tower heater. The only thing that we do regularly is leave the water trickling at night. I just posted this info. for you potential full time bus livers. I'm sure SeanF and others would have better info. since they are full timing in colder climates.

Once again, thanks
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Old 01-31-2009, 08:35 AM   #6
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Re: Which engine?

My buddy's brother is a truck mechanic: he LOVES 8.2 Jimmys! He figures they have gotten him a house, a Ram 2500, and a travel trailer by now.

His bus has a 5.9 Cummins. This is NOT a coincidence.
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Old 02-07-2009, 07:22 AM   #7
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Re: Which engine?

Probably because most people know the 8.2 is a turd...but churches buying buses might well NOT. You're better off with a gas engine.

DD's record with any 4-stroke smaller than a Series 50 is pretty dismal, actually.
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Old 02-22-2009, 01:30 PM   #8
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Re: Which engine?

I have to say, I would place a DT466 right up there with the Cummins.

The 8.2 is a turd?

I went and looked at a truck with that exact engine in it recently.
A friend was buying it to do a certain job and then he was pretty much done with the vehicle.
It was thousands less than anything else out there.
That was 6 years ago. He used it, sold it...and now the guy he sold it to uses it daily and is pleased as punch with it.

I have seen few Skoolies (I have been looking and planning/talking to people for more than 5 years now) that actually log more than 20,000 miles after being converted.
Most people take them on a few trips (maybe one really long one) and then they stay within a hundred miles of home after that.

I guess what I am trying to say is, if the 8.2 you are looking at runs like a million dollars and you really are building the thing to go camping within a few hundred miles 5 times a year...figure out how many miles you are going to put on it. Few diesels will not show wear prior to popping.
How many miles are YOU going to put on your skoolie?

Is the big Cummins or DT 4 grand more? Do you know you can replace a B series cummins used for less than 4 grand?

Please do not misunderstand me. I tend to agree with the big cummins/B series/detroit...as long as you put the DT466 right in there with the big cummins, but it is also a good thing to do the math and figure out what is right for your situation. If you do not plan on putting more then 12,000 miles on the thing over the next 6 years, you will be likely doing tranny work before that 8.2 will blow anyway.

The injection system scares a lot of people away. Once you understand the way it works, it is not bad at all.

Personally, I would rather have a Series 60 Detroit with a Straight 10 speed trans in a Skoolie. Ripped right out of a wrecked Tractor with 300,000 miles or so on it.
This engine would have enough use so it would not be worth a yards time to resell it, so the wreck would go cheap...but it would carry a skoolie around for another 300K on average, get great mileage and have a gear for each and every situation.

One more thing.
A 5.9, cared for well that has not been turned up will last just as long as a bigger Cummins that has been stretched and denied a few oil changes.
Swapping a B series (5.9/Dodge truck motor) over to synthetic oil at 120,000 miles will just about double its usable lifespan.
(What I mean is...I would take a 5.9 with all the records proving its impeccable maintenance over the larger motor that is a crapshoot.)

I wonder what this site seems to have against the 466 motor??? (Or am I missing something?)
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Old 02-22-2009, 02:13 PM   #9
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Re: Which engine?

Quote:
Originally Posted by caseythenose
I wonder what this site seems to have against the 466 motor??? (Or am I missing something?)
I don't think anyone has a thing against the DT466 except that it is difficult to find in used buses and seems to go for a premium when you do find one.
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Old 02-22-2009, 02:40 PM   #10
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Re: Which engine?

Yeah, I noticed that about the pricing. I wish it was not that way. My next thread is going to be about prices.

I would have to say the 466 would be my top choice if I had to buy one without the "replace the engine" plan in the back of my mind.

One thing I would like to clarify so I do not sound like a fish story teller.

The truck I went to look at WAS the same one my friend had bought more than 6 years earlier. It did not sound right when I read it, but that is what I meant.
The reason i felt the need to mention it, is the lack of any issues in that 8.2 after daily use for all that time and I think another 130,000 miles. (Now clocking near 280,000 if i am thinking right.)
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Old 02-22-2009, 04:01 PM   #11
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Re: Which engine?


I'm pretty sure... the reason the International DT466 was not mentioned with the Cummins engines above, was that the original poster did not have a DT466 on his list of available choices.

From what I have read, the DT466 is pretty much King Of The Hill, and it would be right up there with the C-cummins in our ranking.
Three or four years ago, when I told my Shop Manager at the trucking company that I was in the market for a bus, he had basically one piece of advice: Get a DT466.

Some of us have indeed brainstormed about "full size" engines, like 60-series Detroit and 3406 Caterpillar. Trouble is, they are huge. And also not cheap, even with 300.000 miles. (That's just two to three years running cross country!)
I'll see if I can remember to measure the big engines at work, come April, maybe.
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Old 02-22-2009, 11:00 PM   #12
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Re: Which engine?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Elliot Naess

I'm pretty sure... the reason the International DT466 was not mentioned with the Cummins engines above, was that the original poster did not have a DT466 on his list of available choices.

From what I have read, the DT466 is pretty much King Of The Hill, and it would be right up there with the C-cummins in our ranking.
Three or four years ago, when I told my Shop Manager at the trucking company that I was in the market for a bus, he had basically one piece of advice: Get a DT466.

Some of us have indeed brainstormed about "full size" engines, like 60-series Detroit and 3406 Caterpillar. Trouble is, they are huge. And also not cheap, even with 300.000 miles. (That's just two to three years running cross country!)
I'll see if I can remember to measure the big engines at work, come April, maybe.
I worked for EDART Nationalease for years and had the advantage of being able to pick the brains of the factory reps. I told him what I had in my head so one day I was shown a little toy.
It was a mid/late 90's 4900 international with a series 60 and a super ten behind it.
Not sure of the year of the engine, but it did have a full ECM set up.
It was not as shoehorned looking as I thought it would have been.
The fellow who put that creature together said it really only needed 4 gears in it as he laughed.
Though it was not proven on a dyno, it was "well over 500 HP" according to him.
This was likely, since we could order that engine at the time at pretty close to that HP number and the shop had tampered with it.

I would love to have a bus with that setup.

250,000 was the cutoff for the insurance company when they got wrecked.
If they had more than that on the driveline, the adjuster would take a lowball offer on the truck if it was a total loss.
I think the guys could buy a wrecked tractor for about 5k if they were pretty well ruined.
(Which is not cheap, I will grant you that...but it would make a VERY nice hill climber in a skoolie and if they were pulling 6.8MPG in a TT, imagine what a bus would deliver for mileage.)
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Old 02-27-2009, 08:41 PM   #13
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Re: Which engine?

500HP for a DD 60 is actually low...even the Freightliner Centurys that the low-end OTR companies run (CR England, Swift, Hunt) have that or more. England has run 450-500HP 60's for 10 years.

Quote:
The 8.2 is a turd?

I went and looked at a truck with that exact engine in it recently.
A friend was buying it to do a certain job and then he was pretty much done with the vehicle.
It was thousands less than anything else out there.
Exactly--just like a neon-pink Yugo with green polka dots & a blown head gasket will be cheap. The 8.2 Detroit is the neon-pink Yugo of the MDT diesel world. The 8.2 is one of three MDT diesels (the others are the 504 and 555 Cummins V8's which are a 70MPH head-on crash of two loaded tri-axle vacuum trucks) I would advise against ever owning under any circumstances, even if they are FREE. I'd rather have a 350 Olds...at least I can swap a 455 into the car & get some use out of the block when that blows up.
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Old 03-01-2009, 11:30 AM   #14
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Re: Which engine?

I'm looking for a Skoolie to convert into a hay/horse hauler as well as carry the wife and five kids across Kansas...and other areas. We haven't set a budget and have only begun looking, but I'm loving all the discussion and tips about motors, brake systems, etc. One motor that I've run across that hasn't been mentioned in this thread has been Cat diesel motors...any opinions out there on those?

More specifically, we're looking for a bus that we can all ride in "comfortably," camp in, and pull a trailer of hay or horses. We have to travel from far western Kansas to Kansas City every month. We are thinking of chopping the back end to allow for a gooseneck hitch for our trailer. If anyone has any opinions, suggestions or advise on a project of this nature, we'd really appreciate it. Thanks!

Ben.
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Old 03-01-2009, 03:18 PM   #15
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Re: Which engine?


However, the Cat 3208 is not known for longevity. And it is costly to overhaul, because it lacks replaceable cylinder liners, such as the IH DT466 has.

Since you are chopping off the rear of the bus for a goose neck hitch, you have eliminated rear engine buses. For a front engine bus, I recommend a "conventional" -- that is, with the engine under a hood. The only reason to buy a flat-nose, with the engine under the floor next to the driver, is if you absolutely must maximize interior space. It is terribly difficult to service the engine in a front-engine flat-nose (like mine).
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Old 03-01-2009, 06:22 PM   #16
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Re: Which engine?


Thanks, Mightybus! I just wish I could get around to finishing Millicent. She's operational, with over 10.000 miles since I bought her, but there is so much left to do.

Say... for a while I was watching Blue Bird Wanderlodges for sale. Most of them had the 3208. Seems about half of them had had the engine overhauled or replaced at alarmingly low miles. Lack of correct maintenance?

An other thing.... I believe there are 3208s out there without turbocharging. Probably best to avoid?

Oh... and maybe you can refresh my memory: On a 3208 that I once looked at, the turbo seemed to be strangely small -- not much bigger than my fist. Perhaps I remember wrong?
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Old 03-01-2009, 08:20 PM   #17
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Re: Which engine?

IIRC, 3208's could be had at about 125 hp natural and up to 350 hp turbo charged in marine trim. very reliable if you stay on top of the maintainence and don't even think about overheating it.
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Old 03-01-2009, 08:28 PM   #18
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Re: Which engine?


Yes, a turbocharger is expensive to replace. Luckily, they rarely fail.

I agree that fewer moving parts is a good thing. I was thinking of the efficiency that a turbo provides -- power and fuel economy.

Well, that little turbo was a bit bigger than my fist, but not nearly the size of the turbo on my Cummins 5.9.
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Old 03-07-2009, 01:14 PM   #19
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Re: Which engine?

There are a couple of "band buses" on e-Bay right now. They have a 9.0L International motor. They are both 1986 models. I thought I read somewhere that these are non-turbo motors and are about as good as the 8.2L Detroit? Can anyone confirm or deny this?
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Old 03-13-2009, 02:49 PM   #20
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Re: Which engine?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jarlaxle
I'd rather have a 350 Olds...at least I can swap a 455 into the car & get some use out of the block when that blows up.
I do not want to get into a pissing contest here, but when you make statements like this...it only makes you sound silly.
Even implying that the two engines were even remotely similar in their durability or design is ludicrous.

DOGMAD members were lucky to get 20,000 miles out of a set of head gaskets on the 350 olds diesel engines. They were such an abortion, they are not even worth mentioning.

The fleet numbers are not that bad on the 8.2.

It is so funny how opinions work and the gossip chain...

The 6.2 GM diesel in the early and mid 90's were FAR more problematic with the injection pumps popping on them all the time. The 6.0 powerstrokes (the early ones) were a nightmare in the ambulances with the van noses. They had to replace so many of those because of the head issues and the injection problems.
It is funny how few people bad mouth them though.

I feel the numbers tell a real story in a fleet. You have a driver who really runs the thing, since he or she does not pay for it. They get used hard in a fleet and run hot/cold, jerked, snapped, revved, cold-load tested...etc.
It is more fair to say that the 8.2 has a very different injector setup than the other motors. It is fair to say they do not last as long a 5.9 or a DTinline block...comparing them to an old Olds 350 is silly. An 8.2 will run a fairly reliable 200k before it becomes a problem under most conditions.

I wonder if the brazilian Ford diesel had been in that list where it would have scored?
I could not find fleet data for those anywhere. none of my customers or contacts ever used them.
Same thing with the 7.3 navistar. Millions of them out there in Ford pickups...pretty good luck with them too...but how are they in the buses?

I know they do not last even close to as long as a 5.9 cummins in a pickup truck. Why do we not see more of them in the older buses?

It would be a good idea to see how many members here run which engine.
What are the real numbers on this site?
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