RE-POWER

Diesel World - - Diesel Engine Swaps -

at risk, as we know of one owner who ended up with a cracked wind­shield from flex un­der a full-throt­tle pull. Since diesel en­gines are fairly large, a de­ci­sion is of­ten made to box the frame or strengthen var­i­ous ar­eas, usu­ally with the body off, ex­cept in the case of uni­body ve­hi­cles. If rac­ing is at all an op­tion, a good roll cage is also a great way to stiffen a chas­sis for drag rac­ing, rock crawl­ing or sled pulling.

STEP SIX: Se­lect­ing Parts for the Trans­for­ma­tion

So you have your en­gine, trans­mis­sion and your swap ve­hi­cle ready to go. Now it’s just time to stuff ev­ery­thing in, right? Not so fast. Diesel swaps don’t of­ten have “ready made” parts avail­able and are of­ten at the mercy of the builder for even a sim­ple task like in­stalling an en­gine and trans­mis­sion. If you’re us­ing a brand of en­gine and trans­mis­sion that never came in the same ve­hi­cle (let’s say a Cummins with a 4L80E) make sure you have your en­gine-to­trans­mis­sion adapter ready, flex­plate, and a con­verter that is spaced prop­erly. Diesels can also be more dif­fi­cult than other swaps at this point due to their height, com­pli­cated ex­haust rout­ing and re­quir­ing en­gine mount­ing so­lu­tions. En­gine plates, which are com­monly used in gas ap­pli­ca­tions, are usu­ally a no-no in any street-driven diesel, as the vi­bra­tion from the en­gine can be hor­ren­dous. Keep an eye out for clear­ance is­sues, as ev­ery­thing from har­monic bal­ancers to oil pans to the en­gine it­self can be a prob­lem. Keep

 Many high-end sled pulling trucks aren’t swaps, but scratch-built. If this is the case, you can build the en­gine, chas­sis and driv­e­train you want with­out hav­ing to worry about space con­straints. Price? If you have to ask...

 Mod­ern diesels can be very in­dus­trial-look­ing, but that doesn’t mean you can’t clean the en­gine bay up a bit. Bill Cielo’s ’58 Duramax-pow­ered Apache truck has had the com­puter and all the wiring moved down to the floor­board, which gives it a very...

 Weight is one of the main rea­son for many swaps. It would take a 6,000-pound truck at least 2,000 horse­power to go just as fast as this drag­ster can with a mere 800 hp.

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