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  #1  
Old March 27th, 2020, 08:29 PM
fxnelson fxnelson is offline
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Default Changing the V-6 gas to a Diesel

I have a K1502 that I would like to change to a diesel.
Has anyone done this?
If so what would be the best and easiest swap?
What difficulties did you encounter?
What else needed to also be upgraded?
Thanks.
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  #2  
Old March 28th, 2020, 06:22 AM
BillT BillT is offline
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Default Re: Changing the V-6 gas to a Diesel

I would say that a Toro-Flow would be the easiest, but what kind of diesel do you desire?

Myself, I would be going Detroit. Namely a 3-53.

Either way you would need to install heavier Front Springs.
__________________
Drove and owned many, but some of the more interesting ones were:

-'60 GMC 2500 Dump, 305 V-6
-'62 GMC 4000 Flatbed, 305 V-6
-'62 GMC 6500 Flatbed Dump, 478 V-6
-'67 GMC 7500 Box, 6V-53 Detroit
-'71 GMC 9500 Flatbed Dump, 637 V-8
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  #3  
Old March 28th, 2020, 06:27 AM
BillT BillT is offline
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Default Re: Changing the V-6 gas to a Diesel

Here is an example of what it would look and sound like:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1fS43WnFGWs
__________________
Drove and owned many, but some of the more interesting ones were:

-'60 GMC 2500 Dump, 305 V-6
-'62 GMC 4000 Flatbed, 305 V-6
-'62 GMC 6500 Flatbed Dump, 478 V-6
-'67 GMC 7500 Box, 6V-53 Detroit
-'71 GMC 9500 Flatbed Dump, 637 V-8
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  #4  
Old April 9th, 2020, 09:07 PM
POWERSTROKE POWERSTROKE is offline
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Default Re: Changing the V-6 gas to a Diesel

I would think a 4BT Cummins would fit fine and give decent performance. Not a whole lot of electronics on them that your likely to find. And lots of 4&5 speed manual trans fit them.
Problem with the 2-stroke Detroits there's not many guys familiar with working on them, you have to become your own expert.
Like my Son with my old '96 F250, most Powerstroke techs at dealers don't even know there was a 6.9L InDirect Injection, a 7.3L indirect injection, and a turbo-charged 7.3L direct injection V-8's all made by International Harvester. They all think the 6.0L or 6.4L was the first, before the 6.7L Ford engine. So, now my SON with a free download off the internet onto his Smart Phone can diagnose about anything that pops up on my old truck. NONE of that stuff existed back when I was putting 35,000 miles a year on it.
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  #5  
Old April 10th, 2020, 01:20 AM
tbucketnut tbucketnut is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2019
Location: GIG HARBOR, WA
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tbucketnut will become famous soon enoughtbucketnut will become famous soon enough
Default Re: Changing the V-6 gas to a Diesel

Powerstroke, is your son's name Curt? Did you frequent NLOC?
__________________
Steve Stock
Gig Harbor, Wa

1953 Chevrolet 3100
261 cu inch, SM420
Finished Cab off restoration

1964 GMC 1000
305 V6, SM 420
Restoration is now started, still looking for an oldsmobile style power steering pump
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  #6  
Old April 10th, 2020, 06:11 PM
fxnelson fxnelson is offline
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Default Re: Changing the V-6 gas to a Diesel

Thanks for all the suggestions.
Now the next question??
4BT Cummins
Toro-Flow
3-53 Detroit
Which would give the best all around performance and fuel economy?
I know sometimes one must give up one for the other but as low geared as my 4 speed is, I should have enough pulling ability so, fuel economy for me would be the priority.
I was reading some of the threads and hear of one that boasted of 35 MPG. That is so much better than my 8 MPG I would be on cloud nine if that were possible.
Thanks for your support.
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  #7  
Old April 10th, 2020, 07:04 PM
POWERSTROKE POWERSTROKE is offline
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Default Re: Changing the V-6 gas to a Diesel

Steve - Yep, LIGHTING-STRUCK. HE posted lots and lots, I posted a little as POWERSTROKE. Last time I checked the NLOC site there was maybe a post a week to a post a month on the Gen 1 forum. But there's actually a resurgence. Somebody lured Jeff Sparkman out of his lair, and he's cleaning his PC's at home posting stuff about his Big Block truck. The last F-1 race at Indy, Curt & Jeff pulled a funny on me. Jeff & his wife Cheri met Curt & I at a Bob Evan's for breakfast. Then we went to their house for a bit, the Curt and I had to get to The Speedway. I was ushered into the Big Block truck when we walked out of Bob Evans, we drove around a bit looking for a straight stretch of clear blacktop. Jeff stopped, manually shifted the column shifter into lo, brought rpms up a bit then smashed the gas and released the brake, at the first blink of the shift light slipped into 2nd, blink and into 3rd, and blink again and coasted to an intersection, Jeff said we were at about 120-125 when he backed out of the gas. Seemed like only about 5-6 seconds passed.
Anyhow, Curt stopped by this AM, I told him you reached out yesterday. He says Hi.
His Lightning amazed me with it's durability. By their nature, they get run HARD. He had his 8-9 years, was 6 yrs old when he bought it with 64,000 miles, had over 200,000 miles on it. He parted it out, bits and pieces all over the Midwest. Still have the transmission here. I'm finding out E4OD's needing a rebuild don't sell well at ANY price.

One other possibility for a GMC diesel repower, would be a GM 8.2L V-8 Fuel Pincher. I drove one in an F-700 Ford single axle semi-tractor for a year. Delivering freight with a 45 ft trailer. It really did pinch a Dollar's worth of fuel amazingly far. But after 3-4 weeks it would start missing on one cylinder, then 2 cylinders, and 3 cylinders after about 3 months. It would go to the dealer for a tune- up, guy who was a factory trained tech on them explained to me once what goes wrong with them. They normally win Top Honors as worst diesel engine ever. Only ever had one guy on another forum say they had one on a farm truck that never gave a problem. I actually see a switch back to gasoline engines in light and medium duty trucks. Diesel fuel is higher priced than gasoline, and many say a diesel has higher cost maintenance, I don't quite agree with that, but diesel repairs are generally more expensive.
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  #8  
Old April 10th, 2020, 08:18 PM
BillT BillT is offline
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Default Re: Changing the V-6 gas to a Diesel

The guys that go with Detroit is the guys that love them. If you don't have the Detroit "bug" you may not even like it.

That said, not real sure about the mileage you would get with a 3-53, but my 2-53 seems like it runs forever on a tank of fuel. Although I really never let it go below a quarter of a tank. It's not in a truck though, but my '59 John Deere farm tractor.
__________________
Drove and owned many, but some of the more interesting ones were:

-'60 GMC 2500 Dump, 305 V-6
-'62 GMC 4000 Flatbed, 305 V-6
-'62 GMC 6500 Flatbed Dump, 478 V-6
-'67 GMC 7500 Box, 6V-53 Detroit
-'71 GMC 9500 Flatbed Dump, 637 V-8
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  #9  
Old April 10th, 2020, 10:27 PM
tbucketnut tbucketnut is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2019
Location: GIG HARBOR, WA
Truck: 64 1/2 ton
Age: 63
Posts: 143
Rep Power: 59
tbucketnut will become famous soon enoughtbucketnut will become famous soon enough
Default Re: Changing the V-6 gas to a Diesel

Quote:
Originally Posted by POWERSTROKE View Post
Steve - Yep, LIGHTING-STRUCK. HE posted lots and lots, I posted a little as POWERSTROKE. Last time I checked the NLOC site there was maybe a post a week to a post a month on the Gen 1 forum. But there's actually a resurgence. Somebody lured Jeff Sparkman out of his lair, and he's cleaning his PC's at home posting stuff about his Big Block truck. The last F-1 race at Indy, Curt & Jeff pulled a funny on me. Jeff & his wife Cheri met Curt & I at a Bob Evan's for breakfast. Then we went to their house for a bit, the Curt and I had to get to The Speedway. I was ushered into the Big Block truck when we walked out of Bob Evans, we drove around a bit looking for a straight stretch of clear blacktop. Jeff stopped, manually shifted the column shifter into lo, brought rpms up a bit then smashed the gas and released the brake, at the first blink of the shift light slipped into 2nd, blink and into 3rd, and blink again and coasted to an intersection, Jeff said we were at about 120-125 when he backed out of the gas. Seemed like only about 5-6 seconds passed.
Anyhow, Curt stopped by this AM, I told him you reached out yesterday. He says Hi.
His Lightning amazed me with it's durability. By their nature, they get run HARD. He had his 8-9 years, was 6 yrs old when he bought it with 64,000 miles, had over 200,000 miles on it. He parted it out, bits and pieces all over the Midwest. Still have the transmission here. I'm finding out E4OD's needing a rebuild don't sell well at ANY price.

One other possibility for a GMC diesel repower, would be a GM 8.2L V-8 Fuel Pincher. I drove one in an F-700 Ford single axle semi-tractor for a year. Delivering freight with a 45 ft trailer. It really did pinch a Dollar's worth of fuel amazingly far. But after 3-4 weeks it would start missing on one cylinder, then 2 cylinders, and 3 cylinders after about 3 months. It would go to the dealer for a tune- up, guy who was a factory trained tech on them explained to me once what goes wrong with them. They normally win Top Honors as worst diesel engine ever. Only ever had one guy on another forum say they had one on a farm truck that never gave a problem. I actually see a switch back to gasoline engines in light and medium duty trucks. Diesel fuel is higher priced than gasoline, and many say a diesel has higher cost maintenance, I don't quite agree with that, but diesel repairs are generally more expensive.
Small world isnt it. We had a good run on the nloc, great bunch of people and enjoyed many trips for the lfest. Still keep in touch with many people there a lot of us moved on but made friends for ever. Yeah I remember Curt was a high schooler back in the early days. You guys keep safe up there, Ive have managed to get a lot of shop time in recently with this quarantine thing and all.
Steve
__________________
Steve Stock
Gig Harbor, Wa

1953 Chevrolet 3100
261 cu inch, SM420
Finished Cab off restoration

1964 GMC 1000
305 V6, SM 420
Restoration is now started, still looking for an oldsmobile style power steering pump
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  #10  
Old April 12th, 2020, 01:55 AM
POWERSTROKE POWERSTROKE is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Madison, WI
Truck: I don't own one - YET!
Posts: 110
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Default Re: Changing the V-6 gas to a Diesel

STEVE - You have a great memory, Curt was a Senior in HS when I bought his Lighning. I figured an F-150 was more reliable than his "Hand-me-down" '88 Mustang GT. I'd wanted a Mustang since I was ten yrs old, in 1964-1/2, finally scratched that itch at 34 yrs old. The HS parking lot did not treat the Mustang well, about one new dent a week. Surprisingly his Lightning stayed pretty nice for a long time. He wanted to get a vanity license plate, "FARM TRK" for it, it had many nicknames, some good, some I can't type here.
Curt has a couple NLOC people he keeps touch with. The Internet is a really good way to find people and keep in touch. I keep up with an "Old Body Style Revolution" Face Book page, so many young guys with 302 F150's and they want more HP & MPG. Sadly, you can only have one, or the other, not both. The 300-6 isn't really any better mpg, I ran Curt's Lightning 70 miles each way to work one week while I accumulated parts to replace the waterpump on my F-250's 7.3L PSD, I averaged 14 mph running 70 mph with the Lightning, same as my two F-150 300-6 4WD's did. My F-250 averaged 18-1/2 mpg, one summer it averaged 20 mpg over 10,000 miles, I'd put taller tires on it.
Curt went thru his Mid-Life Crisis two years ago, traded his 2014 RAM 2500 Cummins diesel for a 2018 Mustang GT 6 spd with the Performance Pak #2, which is most of the Shelby GT-350 parts. Gorgeous dark KONA blue metallic. It's SHOCKING how 30 years technical development has improved the Mustang. '88 5.0L was 225 hp, '18 is 460 hp. And it STOPS, which is something the '88 struggled with.
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