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Old 09-08-2004, 03:40 PM   #1
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Location: Newfoundland, Canada
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What mates up to an 8.2L Detroit?

I just got back from looking at ANOTHER seemingly great deal on a bus. It's a 1990 GMC with an 8.2 Detroit and a 5 speed. I can get it for almost nothing (less then $500 CDN!). It has the Thomas body and is in pretty good shape, better then most '92's and '93's I've seen lately. BUT there's a catch, forth gear is not the best, it comes out of forth under load, and the guy assures me thet forth is as good as gone. So my question is: Will a five speed (or a four for that matter) from a 366 gas bus "drop in"? I've got the gear to do the job, I've been working on cars and light trucks for years, so that part is not a problem. But I've never done too much work on medium duty rigs like a bus! Any thoughts from the D.I.Y. guys out there. (I suppose that even to own a bus sort of already makes you out to be a DIY'er in the first place!)
Sometimes it's better to remain silent and let everyone THINK you're an idiot, than to speak and remove all doubt.
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Old 09-12-2004, 07:44 PM   #2
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Location: Cobourg Ontario
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Year: 1993
Coachwork: Blue Bird
Chassis: International
Engine: DTA360
Rated Cap: 72
Detroit Diesel's 8.2 is not one of GM's finer products,
Howver instead of swapping transmissions it might be cheaper for you to just pop the cover off the old one and see whats wrong.The shift lever usually pops out of gear from worn bearings and thrust washers or the shift rail detents are worn.
Most transmission manufacturers have repair manuals on the web.Parts required are often sold in rebuild kits.Not too much rocket science is involved,large trannys are easier to fix than one from a car.
It would help you pass the Newfoundland winter!
International Mechanic
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Old 09-12-2004, 11:20 PM   #3
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It's super nice to have a truck mechanic on board here!! Thank you!!!
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Old 09-13-2004, 06:40 PM   #4
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Location: Newfoundland, Canada
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The problem here is that I don't own the bus! I'd have to buy it first to do further digging into the box. I'm wondering if I can ditch the existing gearbox and use a box from a 366 gas bus, which I can get easily. I haven't found anyone who knows if it will fit. How about a 9 or even a 13 speed from a highway truck, like a Fuller or Eaton? That would neat! Will any of these bolt to the bellhousing already on the 8.2 Detroit?
Sometimes it's better to remain silent and let everyone THINK you're an idiot, than to speak and remove all doubt.
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Old 09-15-2004, 01:57 PM   #5
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Here is what I found out for you.
Chances are, the tranny will fit.

If you get me the make and model of each one, I can tell you for sure.
I now have access to the crosscharts for truck parts from a buddie who has a boneyard
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Old 09-16-2004, 07:08 AM   #6
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Just got an email from my friend this morning:

"...most of the trannies are the same, but he needs to find out the make and model of the transmission. If it is one of the old New Process units or a medium duty Spicer, he is all set. They are all pretty standard. Usually, the worst thing he would have to do is have the flywheel remachined for the center bearing. (Meaning a pilot shaft of a different diameter) This would not be the norm. These units were, for the most part, made to interchange. He might even be able to get away with just a new bearing pressed into the flywheel. My bet would be it will fit right in if he uses the housing from the diesel.

Make sure you tell him that the tranny he is getting might be a 5th direct and the one in the diesel might be a 5th over, which would reduce or increase his top end speed...

...that engine is not as bad as some say it is. I would not put it against a DT466 or a B series, but the numbers say it is right in the same line as the Navistar turbo 7.3's for CPM in a 1/4 cycle unit...

<<CPM 1/4 cycle is his slang for "cost per mile" in a truck that has a predetermined life of a quarter million miles, usually the lighter trucks like a 20-24' single axle box truck>>

...the real bad engine from GM was the 6.2/6.5 in the light trucks when they went to the fly by wire pump. In the van fleets, any of these were a nightmare. With the older 6.2/6.5 the head gaskets now and then would blow. Usually not terminal and not too bad to fix. The pumps on the bigger version like he had had one bad year, but I cannot think of which year. Either way, if the pump fails, a new ring kit will fix it for life.

If I were him, I would find one of the 6 speed Spicers with a highway rear like you are planning and make the swap. They are cheap and plentiful.

PS You are a *&^%ing hippie. School Bus boy!!


I hope this helps you.
This guy is a friend of mine I used to work with who manages a fleet of 3600 units. Sounds like you might be in business.
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Old 09-19-2004, 03:36 AM   #7
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8.2 liter flywheel housing

Greetings all, I am new to this group. My bus is an 84 Bluebird with the 8.2 Detroit and 545 Allison transmission.

The 8.2 liter engine has a #2 SAE flywheel housing that will bolt to any #2 SAE clutch housing........at least as I understand it. The dimensions for the different size housings can be found on the web. I don't recall where exactly.

So if you want to bolt up a 13 speed Eaton, you have to find one with a #2 clutch housing. And likewise if you want to install a smaller transmission from a gasser.

It is a good idea to check out the torque rating of whatever transmission you want to install and compare that number with the torque rating of your engine.

One of these days I hope to replace the AT-545 with some sort of stick shift.


John the busboy
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