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Author Topic: Re-engining an MCI8 with a Detroit Series 50  (Read 8788 times)
afryer
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« on: April 15, 2006, 01:20:04 PM »

Got an old MCI8 that we just put a slideout in, so it looks like we'll keep her for a while.  Want to re-engine now.  Thought about a Series 60 but don't want to tear out the bedroom floor.  I was wondering if anybody has had any experience with installing a Series 50?  Don't need a lot more HP but would like more torque.
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JerryH
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« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2006, 01:42:20 PM »

I've seen an MC-9, essentially the same clearances with a DD S-60 engine.  The rear had a bedroom, bed on center.  They removed the mattresses during the intall to provide a minimal hump below the bed.  The work was done by Bernhard Bus in Quakertown.  He's done several of these Mod's.  All apparently working quite well.

JerryH
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Gene 78 MC8
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« Reply #2 on: April 15, 2006, 04:14:45 PM »

I plan on installing a Series 50 in my MC8, but I have not started the project yet so I can not pass on any lessons learned yet. I have a few other projects I want to finish before I start on the Repower. Where are you located? Good luck.

Gene   78 MC8
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TomC
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« Reply #3 on: April 15, 2006, 11:41:56 PM »

Series 50 is nice since it is short, but same height as a Series 60.  Even though I'm not a Cummins fan, their ISC and ISL up to 400hp and 1200lb/ft of torque is the quietest engine now made.  Just delivered a truck with the 300hp and 860lb/ft with an Allison.  It accelerated like a car, even though it weighed around 13,000lb.  Might be an easier convert since the ISC/ISL is the same length as the Series 50 but considerably shorter.  Might also consider an International DTA466/530 and the Cat C9.  All will have enough power, will be smaller and lighter than the Series 50, and do you really need a million mile motor in your bus, when a 500,000mi engine will be more than enough?  Good Luck, TomC
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Tom & Donna Christman. '77 AMGeneral 10240B; 8V-71TATAIC V730.
Clarke Echols
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« Reply #4 on: April 16, 2006, 02:10:52 PM »

Stewart & Stevenson has re-powered hundreds of MC-9 buses with Series 50 engines from 8V92 and 6V92 configurations.  Typically, they replace the right-side radiator with a turbo air-charge cooler, then make sure there are no leaks around the radiator on the left side where air can get past it without going through the core.  The Series 50 requires proper connections to the surge/expansion tank above the radiator so it clears all air from the cooling system within the specified time limit.  The Series 50 is taller than both and longer than the 6V92 two-strokes.  You'll also need a beefed-up cradle to handle the higher torque of the S50.  One bus operator who has a fleet of MC-9s for hauling prisoners says he gets his money back from a re-power in less than a year.

It's a big job, but those who've done it love the performance.  Just make sure your S50 has DDEC-III or DDEC-IV electronics, and you can repower up to 330 or 350 HP without a lot of very expensive engine modifications.

If you can get a B-500 in the package, that's like a dream...  I took a ride around downtown Denver in an MC-11 Greyhound, courtesy of the shop general manager who was driving.  It is a very impressive package when you put those two together.  Shifting is so smooth you can't even tell it's going on.  And 330 HP on a 32,000-pound MC-9 can pull a 6% grade at close to 50 mph.  But be sure you have adequate cooling.  A 6V92 rejects about 12,000 BTU/minute into the radiator at full power.  The Series 50 is about 1/3 of that amount, but you need to make sure you keep a good air flow through the radiator.

Clarke

Got an old MCI8 that we just put a slideout in, so it looks like we'll keep her for a while.  Want to re-engine now.  Thought about a Series 60 but don't want to tear out the bedroom floor.  I was wondering if anybody has had any experience with installing a Series 50?  Don't need a lot more HP but would like more torque.
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Dallas
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« Reply #5 on: April 16, 2006, 04:27:40 PM »

I'm just kind of wondering outloud here, but if your going to repower, basically as an update, why not go to the Mercedes MBE 900 or MBE 4000?
It's the power platform that is replacing the series 50's and 60's anyway.

Dallas
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NJT5047
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« Reply #6 on: April 16, 2006, 08:12:31 PM »

Dallas, I can offer one really good reason to use an S50 rather than a Mercedes....$$!
Another reason is dealing with parts suppliers...bad as DD may be...
This project is already going to cost upwards to $30K with a used S50....what would a Mercedes add to the equation? Wink
See ya soon, JR
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JR Lynch , Charlotte, NC
87 MC9, 6V92TA DDEC, HT748R ATEC

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« Reply #7 on: April 16, 2006, 10:44:10 PM »

If you want to run a MBE, whether it be the 900 series that is a 6.4 liter up to 260hp or a 7.2 liter up to 330hp, this engine is going to be around for the duration.  Detroit is converting what used to be the 2 stroker factory over to be producing the 900 here in the USA.  It is going to be the foundation of the medium trucks from Freightliner, Sterling, and Freightliner chassis corp.  If you could find one from a wrecked truck (they've only been out since 2002), the 7.2 liter is available up to 330hp with 1000lb/ft of torque.  That is so close to the output of the Series 50 at a max of 350hp at 1150lb/ft, that the shear size difference between the two (the 900 is a bit shorter and not as tall and weighs close to a 1000lb lighter), I'd choose the 900.  Granted it is a 500K mile engine compared to the Series 50 being a million mile engine, but then who's going to drive their conversion much over 200K miles?  Also, the 900 has an available compression and exhaust brake that combined absorbs up to 215 hp of braking.
As far as the 12.8 liter 4000 series that is available up to 450hp and 1550lb/ft of torque (1650 next year), this engine along with the Series 60 is going to be fazed out by 2010 in favor of the new line of engines that Detroit/Mercedes-Benz is going to bring out. 
As to the cost of maintenance, they are right on par with the other engines-have to be or else we couldn't sell them.  Also, after asking the mechanics at our store about the frequency of repairs of the Series 60 compared to the MBE4000, they said that the repairs on the 4000 barely exsists compared to the Series 60 that is in the shops alot.  I also would like to see an 4000 taken apart-but one hasn't come in yet in the over 5 years I've been there.  Only seen one or two heads off the engine (it has 6 cylinder heads-great design).  The 4000 also has the strongest turbo and exhaust brake-absorbing up to 600 hp at 2300 rpm.  Personally, I really like the MBE engines.  And everyone that uses them likes the fuel mileage.  We have one fleet that just took delivery of 10 Columbias with the 4000 that is used to pull bottom dump.  Compared to the Cat C12's that they had before, just the fuel savings over the Cat will pay for the truck in seven years! 
Just thought ya'all might be interested.  Good Luck, TomC
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Tom & Donna Christman. '77 AMGeneral 10240B; 8V-71TATAIC V730.
Dallas
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« Reply #8 on: April 17, 2006, 02:03:41 AM »

Thanks Tom!
I don't know from direct expeience, but people I've talked to seem to be super impressed with the Mercedes engine.
Additionally, Mercedes, since it owns Detroit Diesel and Freightliner doesn't need two Class 8 engines in it's line up.
The MBE's have been around for years in Europe and do a wonderful job.
As for cost, the idea that Mercedes is always a high dollar item simply isn't true. That idea comes from the American Automtive world where we never see the standard Mercedes cars that are built for the masses. Mercedes trucks and engines have to be competitive with all the other manufactureres or they wouldn't be around.
Dallas
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« Reply #9 on: April 17, 2006, 02:35:14 PM »

Why are you channging powerplants.........if it is power you are starving for perhaps your 8-71 is just tired.
Doing a major repower on an older coach is pissing your money away........unless you have alot........are looking for a huge project.........and are willing to deal with the number of different headaches that may  come with the conversion.

8-71 parts are as plentifull as they ever were.......and the things are just plain stone age simple.

the small ammount of acceleration gain.......and time saved climbing grades is minimal at best.

ex.

PA to CA trip in my Pickup vs my PD4104 (6-71) towing same truck loaded with two motorcycles.

Truck beats bus by 1.75 hours

same stopover points and times

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busnut104
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« Reply #10 on: April 17, 2006, 03:42:01 PM »

I have heard this several times, about repowering a older coach. Well if you are going to keep it and maybe the only coach you will ever own why not. We all know we will never get our money back when we sell. In my opinion it's not the age of the bus,It's how it was taken of, and what the present cond. is. I would much rather have a 30 yr. old coach in prime cond then a 10 year old which is on it's last leg. As I said just my opinion
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tekebird
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« Reply #11 on: April 17, 2006, 09:25:16 PM »

I agree with the age thing......my '59 '04 is in better shape than most MC-9's running around......

I just think it a waste to spend the time, effort, engineering and $$ to repower with a non OEM type engine.

Get yourself a new 8-71 or rebuild yours.....and it will outlast you and you will have 15k left in your bank to spend on other stuff.

and never have to deal with any screwy computer glitches

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MC7S50
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« Reply #12 on: August 12, 2006, 08:38:28 AM »

I (with much help from a very experienced buddy) have repowered my MC7 with a 1994 S 50 engine purchased from a wrecked Freightliner.  The engine had about 600K miles on it and I got it for $4500.  While were at it, we swapped out the existing RTD 10 speed with an RTO 10 speed.  The main purpose of this repower was to improve fuel economy.  The cradle was modified to accept the engine, and of course there were many other things that had to be adapted. No other chassis modifications were needed.  The engine fits like it was made for the bus.  Perhaps the most difficult part was the electrical system, with the DDEC III ICU.  It was difficult, but not insurmountable for experienced bus folks to do.  We now have the computer controlled Jakes and cruise control along with the diagnostic features of the DDEC.  We retained both radiators, and installed the intercooler in the left side engine service door. 

The job did not cost anywhere near $30K.  We have travelled about 3500 miles so far, and have had no significant problems. Our bus is in very good condition overall.

Fuel mileage is about 9.5 average including mountain climbing in CA and OR, and we have gotten as much as 11 a couple of times in the flatlands. We never got more than 6 with the old 8V71.  Torque is way more than the old motor, and there is never any smoke.  Cooling problems have all vanished, and no more hassle finding engine oil. No oil leaks except a few drops from the breather.

It was a fun challenge, and we are quite happy that we did it. I did have to learn to drive it all over again, as the engine is completely different from the 8V71.  I will be glad to share more details with anyone interested.

John

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Burgermeister
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« Reply #13 on: August 12, 2006, 01:42:40 PM »

Did you set the engine "level" or did you tilt the back end up when you adapted the mounts to the cradle?

Marc Bourget
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« Reply #14 on: August 12, 2006, 08:40:28 PM »

Quote
I (with much help from a very experienced buddy) ,
The job did not cost anywhere near $30K. We have travelled about 3500 miles so far, and have had no significant problems. Our bus is in very good condition overall.
John

The $30K that I mentioned was directed at someone paying to have the conversion done...folk that can DIY can convert for the cost of an engine and transmission.   The transmission is another issue.  Your manual makes a conversion to 4 stroke much easier.    Automatics will be a bit more complicated. 
An aquaintance mated a 60 series to an HT748 and had a world of problems with communication between the engine and transmission.  I don't think it was ever completed due to that problem.  It was drivable, but plagued with irratic shifting problems.   He would have been better off converting to a "matching" transmission/ECM unit...something that was programmed to work together.  Even a old HT740 doesn't shift correctly for the low RPM 4 strokes.  Valve body can be modified for lower RPM shifts.   Yet, Jim Shepard installed an S60 into an Eagle and it's working fine.  I'll find out what he did with the trans this coming week.  He's at the FMCA rally in Charlotte.
I may be wrong, but seems as though Jim used a B500?
Ideally, if someone wanted to convert an automatic, they would find a bus with the powerplant and trans combo that suits.  Maybe find a wrecked or damaged bus and buy the whole bus and use it for a donor.
Hard to believe (I do, just hard to see it) that an MBE 6.4 L engine can make 1000 lbs of torque.   What is the difference between that engine and one of the 7 or 8 liter pickup truck engines....pickups are in the 350 HP range, but I'm not aware that they make anywhere near 1000 lbs of torque?  Maybe they do.   I'm going to look it up...tomorrow.    The smaller, lighter engine would clearly be a good choice in a motorhome.   Friend has a 8 liter Cat in an Itasca that's rated at 350 HP, and it will easily smoke my 6V92.  And he weighs within 10K (or less) of an MC9 at 28K lbs.   I've looked at those engines and they are rather smallish..and they are beginning to collect in RV junkyards.  They are not going to have the service life of an S50 or MBE, but they have matching transmissions, are very dependable, and available for reasonable prices.   Cummins also supplies a similar RV engine mated to an Allison.  Anyone using RV Cats or Cummins for repowering buses?
Both would outlive me. 
John, if you read this, please post some pix of your engine conversion in this thread...I'd like to see how your engine compartment is organized. 
Interesting subject!   JR
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JR Lynch , Charlotte, NC
87 MC9, 6V92TA DDEC, HT748R ATEC

"Every government interference in the economy consists of giving an unearned benefit, extorted by force, to some men at the expense of others.”

Ayn Rand
belfert
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« Reply #15 on: August 13, 2006, 05:51:48 AM »

[work together.  Even a old HT740 doesn't shift correctly for the low RPM 4 strokes.  Valve body can be modified for lower RPM shifts.   Yet, Jim Shepard installed an S60 into an Eagle and it's working fine.  I'll find out what he did with the trans this coming week.  He's at the FMCA rally in Charlotte.
I may be wrong, but seems as though Jim used a B500?

Jim used a 10 speed autoshift out of a truck.  One of his big problems was finding the right connecters to get the engine and tranny to hook up electronically.

Brian Elfert
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« Reply #16 on: August 13, 2006, 08:14:41 AM »

The engine was installed level.  Did not see a reason for tilting it.

Here is a pic.

My friend Frank, who was the brains behind my conversion, has an 01 Eagle with a DDEC II S60 and an automatic that was taken as a unit from a fire truck.  Using a matching set of engine and tranny simplifies things a bunch.

My engine was already programmed for a manual because the Freightliner it came from had a manual.  Also, we used the entire electrical system from the Freightliner, including dash components. No voltage problems, as I had converted the bus to 12V years ago. 

John
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« Reply #17 on: August 13, 2006, 08:24:43 AM »

Clarke

Do yu have a pic of one of the Stewart and Stephenson S50 conversions you mentioned?  It would be interesting to see how they did it.

John
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Burgermeister
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« Reply #18 on: August 13, 2006, 08:44:53 AM »

John,

I too was considering the S-50 after riding a "loaded to the gills" 45'  Greyhound to Reno from Sacramento last year.  Very impressive performance IMHO.

But Bob Sheaves, who was an engineer on the original S-60 design team, feels the M-11 is a much better engine for this purpose, even if you have to "stretch" the bus to accomodate the extra length.

DD has an installation manual that it appears you didn't reference.  Proper S-50 engine Installation requires tilting the "rear" (in the case of your bus - front o'wise) up 5 or 7 degrees. It  is part of the design strategy for keeping the engine cool.  It helps purge the air out of the head.

Trouble with doing "the tilt"  is the difficulty in matching the plane (i.e. making them parallel) of the yoke on the differential with the yoke out of the tranny.  You might have to put some wedges on the axle mount pads.   If you don't match the angles to make them parallel, you experience pretty short u-joint life.   If you have trouble working this out, send me drawing and measure the two yokes with a digital protractor or one of those accurate bubble levels from Sears and I'll make you a set of wedges.  You're set is on me!

Ugly part about the failure to do "the tilt"  is the cooling system may have more than enough capacity to keep the coolant with normal limits, but, like Clarke referenced below,  there's gonna be hot spots in the engine that could lead to real problems.  You'd never know, otherwise, just by looking at the guage.

[No, Gary, I'm not looking for "a life"  I'm hoping to increase John's engine life! FWIW]

Did you also get the correct motor mounts?  For the S-50, you have to provide for something like 7" lateral travel at the head.

There's lots more info in the installation manual that should be referenced.

Marc Bourget
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TomC
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« Reply #19 on: August 13, 2006, 09:43:29 AM »

While the Series 50 is an excellent engine, it has a couple of down falls.  If you don't use the super soft engine mounts, you'll get some vibration at idle (course how much idling do you do?), it is a very tall engine, is heavy for its' HP,  and how many of us need a million mile motor? Couple of alternative engines that are not discussed much are the "medium" sized engines.  The Cummins ISL puts out up to 400hp & 1200lb/ft torque and is a VERY quiet engine because of their common rail injection system-weighs 700lb less than the Series 50.  The Caterpillar C9 that also puts out up to 400hp but a bit less torque at 1150lb/ft- weighs 600lb less than the Series 50.  Both the Cummins and the Cat are much lower engines that wouldn't require floor alterations, are being made still (Series 50 is out of production), are the same length as the Series 50.  Both these engines put out more power than the Series 50's 350hp & 1150lb/ft torque.  The Cummins and Cat engines are considered to be 500,000 mile engines-more than enough for our uses.  Good Luck, TomC
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Tom & Donna Christman. '77 AMGeneral 10240B; 8V-71TATAIC V730.
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« Reply #20 on: August 13, 2006, 06:55:57 PM »

JR, I look forward to seeing you this week.  We are in booth 171.

I chose to use an Eaton AutoShift.  It is a 10 speed "automated" manual transmission.  It was a challenge to get it to talk to the Series 60.  I had to change the ECM to a DDEC IV and then things went well.  The only issue is the hydraulic clutch.  I used Volvo truck parts and had an issue with both bleeding and not having a reservoir (had to remove the one that they use and made my own), but it developed a leak at the master cylinder. 

I am trying out a standard automotive master cylinder.  I need to make some adjustments to that design. 

Other than the clutch, the transmission is great.  A little slow on the acceleration as you loose turbo boost on each shift, but once it gets rolling, it is great.  You have a gear for every situation.  It is kind of fun to hear it go through the gears Grin.

Some of the conversion details are on my project pages (link listed below).
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Jim Shepherd
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’85 Eagle 10/Series 60/Eaton AutoShift 10 speed transmission
Somewhere between a tin tent and a finished product
Bus Project details: http://beltguy.com/Bus_Project/busproject.htm
Blog:  http://rvsafetyman.blogspot.com/
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« Reply #21 on: August 13, 2006, 07:35:54 PM »

Hi Jim,
I"ll be out there tomorrow afternoon.  Bringing Norm, who's MC7 is sitting in a parking lot with a clutch failure, to the speedway around 3.   I'll look you up.   
I've read your post on the engine conversion...very interesting project..way beyond my meager knowledge base! 
Having thought about the engine conversion thing, I believe that if my engine fails I'd probably go with the RV style Cat or Cummins that is popular with large diesel motohomes these days.  Get engine and trans.  They make 350 very dependable, smooth HP.  And they operate at a little higher RPM which more closely emulates the 2 stroke cruise RPMs.  Be able to keep my diff as is.   Still would get decent milage.  Still way too expensive to consider unless major engine failure.   I think that Lang did the RV style engine in his Starliner...I may be wrong.  But all the electronics and auto would work together.  And, as John did, use all the RV dash and electrical components for a ready to go package. 
If I found a burned or wrecked pusher with a low milage late 8 liter 350 HP diesel, I'd buy it strip out the powertrain and scrap the rest.  Just keep the
powertrain until I needed it.  However, my 6V92TA DDEC couldn't run any better.  Never been a problem with exception of a rear main seal....which probably indicates a good many miles on the engine.  I replace both the wear ring and seal.  Still runs great and solved the oil leak.  Total parts cost...$35.00.  Well, I did buy an engine dolly from Madbrit and had it shipped up here from Az...that was a little more!  The dolly makes it doable!   
Repowering is not something that I'd do for fuel milage...but I would would if the engine or trans suffered a major failure.
BTW, Norm is the "Air Tab" vendor at the FMCA Rally.  His MC7 has an apparent throwout bearing failure (the bus pulls, but the clutch won't release), and the fuel tank is leaking...sort of a "perfect storm?"  Luke has a fuel tank which he'll send down if the orig tank is beyond repair, and a guy from Lancaster, SC is going to R&R the fuel tank and pull the engine and repair the clutch, with the coach in the parking lot.   That's going to be a days work.  On a old coach, sometimes bolts don't agree, cannot find correct parts...guys gotta be good! 
See ya, JR
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JR Lynch , Charlotte, NC
87 MC9, 6V92TA DDEC, HT748R ATEC

"Every government interference in the economy consists of giving an unearned benefit, extorted by force, to some men at the expense of others.”

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« Reply #22 on: August 13, 2006, 08:48:17 PM »

Thought about buying an ex hound MC-12 with 50 series amd install a slide?? My old 6V92T with nooooo computer takes me down the road at 70-75mph and 7mpg with no problem.  I just aint much on transplants! How much fuel savings would make up the cost difference, unless you driving 100,000 a year... Just my 5 cents worth (don't get much for 2 cents these days.)
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belfert
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« Reply #23 on: August 14, 2006, 05:34:07 AM »

Thought about buying an ex hound MC-12 with 50 series amd install a slide?? My old 6V92T with nooooo computer takes me down the road at 70-75mph and 7mpg with no problem.  I just aint much on transplants! How much fuel savings would make up the cost difference, unless you driving 100,000 a year... Just my 5 cents worth (don't get much for 2 cents these days.)

I read somewhere that Greyhound had not yet released the MC-12s with the Series 50 engines.  This may have changed iin the last three or four months.

Brian Elfert
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« Reply #24 on: August 14, 2006, 07:49:58 AM »

Clarke

Do yu have a pic of one of the Stewart and Stephenson S50 conversions you mentioned?  It would be interesting to see how they did it.

John

I don't have any pictures.  I do have a re-powered Neoplan AN-440 transit, but it was a different
animal.  It uses a combined radiator and charge-air cooler (intercooler) in a single unit.

As for the MCI conversions, they kept the left-side (driver side) radiator and replaced the right-side
with the intercooler.  Since the S-50 is longer than the 6V92s and a bit longer than the 8V92s
(or 8V71s ?), so the drive shaft has to be shortened.  They also built a somewhat heavier
cradle due to the higher torque, and used a different set of mounts (the same mounts used
by MCI when they went to S-50 power in the Greyhound MC-11 buses.  MC-11 is an MC-9
specially modified for Greyhound).  The HT-740 transmissions were usually retained.

The S-50 with a B500 Allison is a really sweet setup if you have a 4.69 rear-end ratio.  Top
speed of about 87 MPH in 6th gear (second overdrive) with beautiful shift points.  The engine
runs at "sweetheart" rpm at 65-70 mph (6th gear), 55-60 (5th), 45-50 (4th), 35-40 (3rd)
and 22-27 (2nd).

Clarke
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« Reply #25 on: August 15, 2006, 07:38:09 PM »

The Greyhound MC12 I had a chance to drive Buffalo to Toronto sometime last year, or a little earlier, had a S50, and a build date of late 90's. Somewhere on someone's archive you might find the post I made at that time. Memory fades with age....

There is no MC11. The Greyhound model that looks like a MC9, only with a more aerodynamic roof line and factory square taillights, amongst other details, is an MC12.

The tranny only showed 5 gears on the display. The S50 adequately mates to the B400 Allison in transit use, I wouldn't know why it would be mated to a B500 for Greyhound. Remember, the dogbus is very good at not spending money when they shouldn't...

For whatever stupid reason, I never thought to dive in and get the good details on that coach....

Next time I see one sitting still here in Toronto, I will make amends and dive in and get the details.

Bad, bad, buswarrior!

happy coaching!
buswarrior
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« Reply #26 on: August 15, 2006, 09:51:08 PM »

Burgermeister, do you know where one can get hold of the S-50 install manual you reference?  I have had no problems with cooling so far.  Of course, I don't drive when the ambient is very high, for many reasons.  Do you know if the "tilt" you reference is recommended for S60 engines as well as the S50?  I could not find a post where Clarke mentioned possible cooling issues caused by installing the engine level.  Can you be more specific?  Thanks for the info and the offer of making wedges for me.  But I need to be sure I don't cause worse problems like eating U-joints.

I chose the S50 mainly because I did not want to do any chassis mods, it was available for a reasonable price, and because I was advised that it was the only 4-stroke that would fit into the 7/8/9 engine bay without chassis mods.  I did not use super soft engine mounts.  There is some vibration when the engine is shut down; almost none at 800 rpm idle. At no time has the vibration been a problem.
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Burgermeister
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« Reply #27 on: August 26, 2006, 09:19:38 AM »

You're from Sacto!

I'm in Stockton.

I'll have to check for some of your questions. I'd expect the intallation manual is available from DD.  Clarke duplicated the S&S engineered installation, probably taking it for granted.  Your "amateur" status is what prompted my earlier question about tilt. 

The installation tilt came from an eningeer for DD on the original S-60 design team.  The same "approach" was kept with the 50 so the tilt is preferred.   Again, the insidious nature of this is like going out in the sun with a new bathing suit,  the "newly exposed" areas burn, while the rest of you is just fine.

You'll need the wedges IF you tilt the engine (assuming the original 2 stroke was level and the pinion matched that.  Regardless, output axis of rotation should closely match pinion axis of rotation or you experience U-joint problems, shortened life, etc.

Marc Bourget
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« Reply #28 on: September 05, 2006, 05:37:00 PM »

I found a copy of the S50 installation manual.  Am now reviewing it to see if there is anything I need to change in my installation.  Haven't found anything yet. 

Clarke advises he has a Neoplan.  Did he also duplicate the S&S installation in an MCI?

Not sure what you mean by "amateur status".  I guess that means I am not an engineer by training.  If so, that is correct.  Very few of the folks I know who do extensive work on their busses are engineers, although I agree that one can get into trouble by not knowing more about the engineering implications of what one is doing. An example of this appears to me to be installing a slideout in a monocoque constructed bus like a GM or MCI.  I would not attempt this without the advice of a structural engineer on how to reinforce the structure after cutting out a large hole in the side of the bus.  However, I have seen several MCIs with slides.  I wonder if they were reinforced correctly.

I am not too concerned about air being purged from the cooling system within 30 seconds of initial fill, as required in the installation manual.  I think the vent line from the top of the thermostat housing to the air space in the expansion tank should take care of that.  Since I retained the standard MCI overhead radiator configuration, the air should seek the highest point in the system, which is the expansion tank. I don't think there is much chance of the water pump becoming air locked in this configuration.   I retained both radiators.  The CAC is in the left engine side access door, which is about level with the engine.

Yes, we did know of the need to be sure the axle and the engine are in the same plane to keep from going thru u-joints rapidly.  It is the same thing as when doing an engine swap in a car.

Thanks for your help.

John
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« Reply #29 on: September 05, 2006, 06:59:34 PM »

There is no MC11. The Greyhound model that looks like a MC9, only with a more aerodynamic roof line and factory square taillights, amongst other details, is an MC12.

The guys at the Greyhound shops told me in the early 1990s that they were MC-11s.

Quote
The tranny only showed 5 gears on the display. The S50 adequately mates to the B400 Allison in transit use, I wouldn't know why it would be mated to a B500 for Greyhound. Remember, the dogbus is very good at not spending money when they shouldn't...

The B-500 has two overdrives, 35% and 55% which makes for a fast-rolling bus at 1500 RPM.  That's
why they use the B-500 in 'hounds.  Shifts as smooth as silk too.  The shop manager at Greyhound in
Denver took me for a ride in one of their buses one night to demonstrate it.

CE
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« Reply #30 on: September 05, 2006, 07:54:05 PM »

I certainly didn't mean a slight when I spoke about "amateur" status.   I'm an amateur road racer and I've held or tied lap records at two tracks.

I could tell by some of the comments that you hadn't glommed onto the installation manual

The bleeder tube from the Thermo housing is a good thing but it only works as advertised if you have the tilt.

You can still generate air in the system even with two radiators, but not if they're "fresh"  Configuration of various goodies in the system can do it also.

Remember the coolant is "close" to boiling, so it don't take much pressure differential to "spontaneously" develop aeration.

Pump becoming 'air locked" is an extreme situation.  You can get the engine in trouble long before you lock the coolant pump. 

It may be that the loss of cooling capacity with aeration prompts people to jump to the conclusion that the pump is air locked. 

My guess is something would break, due to the nature of aeration and the engine's response to its presenced, long before the coolant pump air locked.

I compliment you on your approach and presence of mind.  You've got most of the "battle" won.  Just alot of diligence and hard work in front of you now!

Onward and Upward

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« Reply #31 on: September 05, 2006, 08:58:50 PM »

I am not familiar with any "installation manual" for the S-50, but I have a copy of the EPQ (end-product
questionnaire) which specifies a long series of tests that are required to be performed and passed, or
the warranty on the engine is void.

I haven't noticed any "tilt" on the S-50 in my Neoplan which was installed in a repower by Stewart &
Stevenson in Denver, so I don't have an opinion there.  However, it is critical that all air
be rapidly removed from all coolant passages in very short order after starting or you can expect very
big trouble.  The amount of heat generated by the high temperatures inside the cylinder make it
imperative that there be no possibility of gas bubbles forming against the cylinder surfaces at
any time during operation.

The tests call for a clear tube in the radiator hose going to the top of the radiator with a piece of
string or yarn to demonstrate fluid flow through the radiator.  The surge tank must be above the
engine with a bleed tube from the de-aeration port on the engine upward to the tank.  There
are some other details as well, but my memory is fading and the book isn't readily at hand right now.

You should be able to obtain a copy of the manual from any DD dealer or parts department.  It
is well worth studying and understanding.  Experience has demonstrated to my satisfaction that one
can avoid a lot or problems by simply understanding how your equipment works so you can
recognize when things aren't as they ought to be.  I repair a lot of stuff operated by "mechanical
bozos" who never bothered to understand or try to understand, even though they no doubt could
with some effort.  It's a very expensive "easy way through life".

Clarke
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Burgermeister
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« Reply #32 on: September 06, 2006, 08:04:59 AM »

For the record, I didn't refer to the installation manual when I made my comment about installation manual.

Actually,  I was quoting "hearsay."  At the same time, just because it's "hearsay" doesn't mean it's worthless information.

At the time I posted, I happened to be on the telephone with Bob Sheaves, discussing the point with him.

This was probably the (innocent) impetus for the "amateur" comment.  Bob, while workding for DD, was an engineer on the original S-60 design (Big Brother to the S-50) team and probably has an "idea" of whether or not it is BETTER to install the engine at a slight nose up angle.

Bob is currently working with Freightliner, helping develop cooling systems used in Export versions,  like the land train picture shown in another thread.  This was the truck application he was working on when "we" gave "his" seminar on "All you never wanted to know about cooling and were afraid to ask!" at Rickreal in July.

When I've commented that things can happen very quickly, look at it from Bob's perspective.  Trying to make it work, rather than trying to "get by" like a less than knowledgeable converter,   In new truck installations they've blown 5 Mercedes engines in a little over a month. 

To ressurect a topic routinely raised about "band-aid" fixes to cooling systems augmented by misters . . .

Bob's open minded, because he understands all the competing factors.  A cooling system can be designed to employ a mister system.   If it isn't designed, from the start, to employ a mister system,  it isn't a good idea to rely on one because other attributes of the system can prevent the engine "realizing" what a mister system can do- at exactly the point one needs it.

Onward and Upward
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Greg Paciga (S.Ga)
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« Reply #33 on: September 06, 2006, 03:49:40 PM »

Well I must comment here. This has been one of the most enlightening posts I've read. I have spent the last hour reading each and every opinion posted here. VERY GOOD READ!!

 Each and every one.

Now...Fred Hobe tells me my 6v92T is one of the weakest he's ever seen. Even though (according to the wheel odometer) the rebuilt blue "reliabuilt" engine only has about 30K mile on it. I'm thinking that maybe it's just the down sized injecters that N.J.T. had installed on all of thier replacment power plants to try and conform to air standards.

But I haven't had the time or money yet to send it to the local experts to re-rack the engine and actually check the size of the injectors.

Good read guys
Greg Paciga (S.Ga.)
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Don't think your going to do a conversion overnight. I did and 4 years later I'm still only 85% done. LOL  Smiley  Smiley

Why??  Because I did it right. Check out my any of my 900+
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« Reply #34 on: September 06, 2006, 07:10:05 PM »

But I haven't had the time or money yet to send it to the local experts to re-rack the engine and actually check the size of the injectors.
Greg Paciga (S.Ga.)

Greg, sounds like you have a "ceramic" engine.  If it is an ex-NJT with a blue engine, it is the most emission cleanest they had prior to the DDECs.   It does have small injectors, but you may find some power increase by running the max gov speed up to 2100 RPM.  It's probably set to 1800 RPM.  That alone will make a noticeable difference in power once you get going.   The "blue" engines had ceramic liners. Yours may have steel in them now...depending on whether NJT was responsible for the last major.   Silver color was also Reliabuilt, purple was in-house NJT, and blue is the very low emissions ceramic cylinders.
Didn't I see that you're coming to Timmonsville?  I've never seen a "real" blue! 
See you there! JR
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« Reply #35 on: October 13, 2006, 10:43:59 AM »

The installation manual I found is DDC pub 7SA747 of May 04.  It is for Construction, Industrial, and Marine applications, not for mobile applications.  Still has a lot of good info.  It is a 433 page pdf.  I will be glad to share it with anyone interested.  It also applies to S-60s.

Actually, my S 50 engine is hard to get up to normal 190 deg operating temp.  I have changed the thermostats and seals, which helped a little.  It only runs at around 140 normally.  The only time it gets up to 190 is when we are on a long pull.  I don't understand this behavior.  I have 2 gages, and both show about the same temp.  Any ideas? 

John

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« Reply #36 on: October 13, 2006, 10:53:26 AM »

Here is a link to a newer version of the same PDF....somebody had posted this in a thread a few days ago, but I cleaned it up

S60 A&I  7SA747 0405.pdf

 Grin

Edited:   Sorry,  Niles500 was the somebody I couldn't remember who posted this link on another thread  I jus' modified it a bit   Roll Eyes
« Last Edit: October 13, 2006, 07:58:51 PM by eglluvr » Logged
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