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Old 05-09-2020, 07:10 AM   #1
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Nutty Idea / Dumb Question

Strayed off into a twisted train of thought and wondering if an 80's 454 and either TH400 / TH475 transmission from an RV could handle the weight of a larger skoolie. Engine in question is an RV application (I've heard these have a slightly different camshaft profile for more low-end torque) and the package I have in mind has around 65k original miles.

The trans is what I would be worried about. Kinda thinking the TH475 could, but not sure about the TH400. Anyone ever seen either of these in a skoolie other than cutaway van type? Thinking this could be a possible repower for a 366/427, or maybe even to possibly replace one of the more troublesome diesels (6.0 PS / VT365 for example)

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Old 08-12-2020, 10:18 PM   #2
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Well I do like people who think outside the box!

Let's cut the question into a few parts.

First: "larger Skoolie". How large?

So let's just say 30 odd foot, seven ton for giggles.

And now second, engine size.

Seem to recall some early GM highway coaches with wee 270 ci sixes. Although perhaps not the most stellar choice - some tandem class 4 dumps used 300 ci Ford inlines. Skoolies in the 70's (here) were typically gassers. 318 Chrysler, 345 Binders. Ford as I recall had something unfamiliar to me. Want to say something like 377 but probably way off and never seen one.

So will a 454 pull a bus? Oh hell yeah trivially even smogged to the teats. But you'll run out of gas on your way to the gas station.

Trannys:

Oh man, the TH-400 was something in it's day (still run one too in a 7300 pound P-30), and I'm tempted to say it would go for awhile .. Maybe even a long while. (sorry, if not much actual science to that particular declaration).

Slush boxes were typically factory designated for input shaft torque rather than what they could ultimately pull in the real world with some given axle ratio. The actual numbers, puffed up towing capacity aside .. tend to be somewhat vague.

That said .. Roughly and anecdotally .. the 400 will pull 4 tons gross all day long for 200,000 miles plus with 4.10's in a city delivery truck.

But my feeling is it's not near enough transmission for a full sized bus.

Nor would i even consider one. Six percent of your fuel just .. poof. And no overdrive.
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Old 08-12-2020, 10:52 PM   #3
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Two words: Ford V10
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Old 08-12-2020, 11:17 PM   #4
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Funny you say that..

The 30 odd foot U-Haul I moved here with had one of those (automatic). Was probably a good 13,000 pounds loaded. Sucker not only went like pure stink, but really considering, surprisingly didn't beat me up too much at the pump either. Maybe twenty bucks (over 150 miles) more than my Crown Vic daily? I remember thinking at the time that it might be a heck of a project engine (one day when they hit the boneyard cheap)
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Old 08-12-2020, 11:52 PM   #5
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You can skip the video and I will tell you the bottom line 425hp, 750 torques

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Old 08-13-2020, 02:18 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BeNimble View Post
Two words: Ford V10

Some new buses are actually coming from the factory with this engine.
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Old 08-13-2020, 10:02 AM   #7
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Not because anyone really wants them but they solve the diesel particulate trap-regen system problems with diesel engines. No "B" life info out there but probably will go 200,000 miles if you don't mind spark plug rockets (yes,still), exhaust stud failures rough idle and a stellar 8 MPG. Most diesel engines are just getting broken in at 200 K so I don't think the V10 will lend itself to the skoolie crowd all that well.

Don't even get me started on Chevy's 454 push rod bending cam eating gas hog!
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Old 08-13-2020, 10:17 AM   #8
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But them spark plugs though
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Old 08-13-2020, 12:43 PM   #9
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"Engine in question is an RV application (I've heard these have a slightly different camshaft profile for more low-end torque) and the package I have in mind has around 65k original miles."
CheeseWagon


Just 'cause an engines cheap (even free) doesn't mean it's a good choice and will remain cheap in a poor application...

But the RV engine will (should) have a cam profile designed to deliver torque at low rpm.

TH400 while heavy duty in terms of cars and pickups has a lot of parasitic drag compared to newer designs and that's before considering the lack of o/d...

If you have to do the work of modification to make something fit -- choice something newer, more reliable, and more efficient...
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