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Old 02-19-2019, 07:46 AM   #1
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Powertrain suggestions

Looking to purchase my first bus! Iíve done some research and have found that the dt466 engine backed up by an Alison trans is a nice combo. I found a bus nearby that Iím going to look at. It has a 5.9 cummins and an at545 transmission. Wondering if anyone has experience or any input with that power train? Thanks!
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Old 02-19-2019, 11:40 AM   #2
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Looking to purchase my first bus! Iíve done some research and have found that the dt466 engine backed up by an Alison trans is a nice combo. I found a bus nearby that Iím going to look at. It has a 5.9 cummins and an at545 transmission. Wondering if anyone has experience or any input with that power train? Thanks!
It depends on which Allison transmission it is. The AT545 is the least desirable for open road use as it has no lock up converter, will heat the fluid under extreme conditions (high road speeds and mountain passes). The DT466 will usually be back with a better trans than a 545. Look for a 643 or 3060 trans.
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Old 02-19-2019, 11:42 AM   #3
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Most desirable power trains are international dt466 and cummins 6cta 8.3 (both mechanical older engines), pre 2004 international dt466e and cummins isc (computer controlled without egr valve). These are wet cylinder and can be rebuilt inframe.

International t444, t444e and Cummins 6bt 5.9 , ISB are ok but a little light on power. CAT 3126 are ok but parts are more $$$. All above are parent bore and have to removed from the bus and machined to rebuild. Stay away from engines post 2004 as they have emission systems which are more $$$ to fix.

Good trannies are allison 643, 2000 and 3000 series. Allison 545 lack a lockup torque converter and are not ideal for highway use due to overheating and lack of engine breaking going down hill.

Ted
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Old 02-19-2019, 11:49 AM   #4
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Most desirable power trains are international dt466 and cummins 6cta 8.3 (both mechanical older engines), pre 2004 international dt466e and cummins isc (computer controlled without egr valve). These are wet cylinder and can be rebuilt inframe.

International t444, t444e and Cummins 6bt 5.9 , ISB are ok but a little light on power. CAT 3126 are ok but parts are more $$$. All above are parent bore and have to removed from the bus and machined to rebuild. Stay away from engines post 2004 as they have emission systems which are more $$$ to fix.

Good trannies are allison 643, 2000 and 3000 series. Allison 545 lack a lockup torque converter and are not ideal for highway use due to overheating and lack of engine breaking going down hill.

Ted
A cat 3126 doesn't cost any more to operate or repair than any Navistar product of the same era.
If my Cat fails in the same way as my last DT did I've checked and the parts would be substantially cheaper.
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Old 02-19-2019, 12:07 PM   #5
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Thank you very much for all that information. Will help me out tons!
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Old 02-20-2019, 12:20 AM   #6
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A cat 3126 doesn't cost any more to operate or repair than any Navistar product of the same era.
If my Cat fails in the same way as my last DT did I've checked and the parts would be substantially cheaper.
Thanks ECCB,

I stand corrected. That is good information to have from someone who has priced the similar parts for engines from the two manufacturers. My comment was based on what I have read here. CAT may have gotten an undeserved bad rep on it's part prices.

Most of us are looking at buses that will have some milage on them. If you are looking at a bus it would be a good idea to research what common problems that model/year engine may have. It would give you an idea of what to look for when checking the bus out, looking at service records or talking to previous owners. Also having an idea of what repairs for these common failures cost might help with your decision making.

Ted
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Old 02-20-2019, 03:07 AM   #7
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Thanks ECCB,

I stand corrected. That is good information to have from someone who has priced the similar parts for engines from the two manufacturers. My comment was based on what I have read here. CAT may have gotten an undeserved bad rep on it's part prices.

Most of us are looking at buses that will have some milage on them. If you are looking at a bus it would be a good idea to research what common problems that model/year engine may have. It would give you an idea of what to look for when checking the bus out, looking at service records or talking to previous owners. Also having an idea of what repairs for these common failures cost might help with your decision making.

Ted
I definitely wouldn't buy a high mileage/high hours 3126, 444E, or 5.9 due to them being parent bore.
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