Advice Request: Are Refurbs/Rebuilds Risky to Buy?
Hello all! Question regarding certain mechanical issues in a conversion I'm considering: refurbished engine, needs rebuild of turbo. Details below.
I've been enjoying learning from you all. I am strongly considering purchasing an already converted skoolie. The DIY approach is cheaper, I understand, but a) I'm new to the skills needed, and b) I'm trying to downsize significantly so that I can save the capital needed to eventually do my own build or take the purchased conversion on the road with confidence.
I'm looking at a completed conversion for which the owner has agreed to $22k if the mechanical situation checks out. Here's the bus:
2001 Thomas Saf-T-Line, 30ft
24V 5.9L Cummins turbo diesel
Allison 545 transmission
Front Axle: DANA E1320I
Rear Axle: DANA J190
The owner is checking for me whether it's a 53 block.
The engine was remanufactured in 2011:
Cummins ReCon Engine. Model ISB 190-2600, date of mfg. 02/04/11.
Valve Lash Cold Int .010 Exh .020
Firing Order 153624
Low Idle RPM 800
Rated H 190 @ 2600 RPM.
It was a church bus prior to its conversion.
The owner took it to a diesel mechanic two weeks ago and learned that it has an oil leak on the cold side of the turbo. A shop quoted the owner $600 to rebuild the turbo, and the owner is taking care of that before we finalize an agreement.
Are either the engine refurb in 2011 or rebuild of the turbo to repair the current oil leak on the cold side of the turbo red flags?
I'll have it checked out by another mechanic before I finalize a purchase if we get that far, of course, but the bus is 500 miles away so I'd like to have a good sense of it before I fly up there.
I'll be keeping my skoolie in a mostly static location in the Austin area. I'm planning to keep it parked most of the year and live in it full time. Use it to learn more of about bus maintenance and conversion. This is not going to be hitting the long-term travel road quite yet; I want to have sufficient capital saved for emergency maintenance before I go far with it. But I do need to get it to where live (500 miles drive) and keep it in good working order.