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Anybody Rebuild Their Own Engines?


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i cant afford to pay a shop to do it so i am thinking of doing it my self. i know my way around tools and i have rebuilt gas engines but never a diesel. what i need to know is what rebuild kits are good out there? i seen dap offers one. or should i just go to cummins and get one. i found a machine shop in my area that is supposed to do diesel engines so i am gonna go there tomorrow and see what they charge to do the machine work. the reason i am gonna rebuild is i am getting really bad blow-by it even popped my tappet cover i installed and is blowing oil out there. the truck has a little over 200,000 miles on it but i bought it used. any tips or advise would be greatly appreciated.  

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i'm using a stock one but when i bought the truck it had one of those foam looking types. the shops i have gone to are basically are gonna do what i am gonna try to do. pull the engine and send it out to a machine shop and get it back and assemble. 

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I agree with Mike. If you've done a few gassers, the diesel shouldn't have any surprises for

you, or anything in there that'd be 'whoa, what the heck'!

Your lifting equipment may disagree! ( spine, arms, oh yes: engine stand (I ususlly do a diesel on-the-ground) and of course the actual hoist to yank it) I have a 1.5 ton cherry picker

(cheapo) that I guess is barely adequate.. lets just say if I did it every day, I'd look into a heavier unit. For my big engines, I got an overhead.

As far as kits, and who supplies them, my local cummins service dealer says by the time these engines are

pushing 20 years old, Cummins may or may not be the actual builder for their 'kits'. Outside vendors

probably fill the bill. Nothing wrong with that, quality wise.

There are certainly less expensive suppliers out there, I've used FP diesel quite a bit on various ag

and stationary engines. There are a lot of different names-on-the-box out there, I wonder if most originate from the same place!

If you are just going for a stocker type engine, I'd say 'aftermarket' boxed components will be

adequate. In fact, if you are going for the 'high water' mark, there are components that are probably better suited than original Cummins.

Start talking to your machine shop guy! ( no doubt he's done a 'few' by now, and can see what works, or doesn't cut the mustard.) If you use his machine shop for the actual machining, usually

they don't mark-up the kits. (mine doesn't) Believe me, they don't want to send out any job that

'comes back'

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gravity.

keeps the lifters down. They'll catch on every lobe, and bearing journal

after getting the head off, I'll flip the short block up on it's end, remove the pistons. Then flip it again so the deck is face down. Remove crank, and THEN cam.

'flip' is a pretty generic term! I put a wood pallet across the legs of my cherry

picker, and that is a impromptu work bench.. although a little low for an aging back! Use the hoist to wrassle the block around.

I prefer to have the block sitting flat, as opposed to hanging on a stand. Especially when it's time to torque the main caps and head. Actual heavy duty stands

attach to the side of the block, which helps limit block flex. (too much $$$$ for my

shop!!)

DO NOT HANG BLOCK FROM REAR FACE TO RE-ASSEMBLE

Edited by rancherman
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i have a quick question. my truck has the 53 block in it and its not cracked. i bought it used so i dont know if this is the original engine that came with it but the truck has 195,000 miles on it. i live in southern california so it doesn't get as cold as it does in other states. should i be worried that it might crack in the future? what other years of block can i use, if i can find a bare block or do i have to find a 99. 

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i have a quick question. my truck has the 53 block in it and its not cracked. i bought it used so i dont know if this is the original engine that came with it but the truck has 195,000 miles on it. i live in southern california so it doesn't get as cold as it does in other states. should i be worried that it might crack in the future? what other years of block can i use, if i can find a bare block or do i have to find a 99. 

Someone please correct me if I'm wrong, but I think the only difference between the (98.5-2000) & (2001-2002) was one had the cam sensor and the other had the crank sensor. I don't know if those are interchangeable or not 

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IMO if the block you have made it the first 195,000, it will probably go another 200,000 and more. It has been heat cycled a few times by now.

 

Did you happen to checkand see if the breather was plugged? 

 

I have a 01  and it has a cam sensor no crank.

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socal,

Not all  53  blocks  are doomed.    Plenty in here   with   a  LOT  of miles, and  still   humming along.      Yours   apparently  falls  into that  class

 

TFaoro,

My  2000  has  both,    crank  sensor is   just above  (and kinda hidden)  by the  starter,  and   threads  directly into the  side of the block. * Ok,  it  pushes  in  a hole,  and   a  bolt  keeps in place.*      The  cam  sensor is   part of the  timing  case,  not the block.   

Edited by rancherman
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