Old Diesel Engines

Discussion in 'Trucks and Trailers' started by Mack77, Apr 5, 2010.

  1. Mack77

    Mack77 LawnSite Member
    from NJ
    Messages: 208

    Hi Everyone,

    I'm looking to buy an RV (bus) with a 1990 E-350 diesel engine. I *think* it's a 7.3 non powerstroke but am not 100% sure. It has 145k miles, and has been maintained by a local gov agency every 4k.

    Does anyone have experience with this type of make/model?
    Will an older diesel engine (20+ years) be dependable if taken care of?
    Any known problems with these engines? I've seen that they have thin cyl. walls...anything else?

    Any help would be greatly appreciated!
  2. unkownfl

    unkownfl LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,837

    Those are good engines. Indirect diesel.
  3. Gravel Rat

    Gravel Rat LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,544

    As long as the coolant additive has been maintained the engine should be good to go. The 7.3 IDI do suffer from cavitation and you could end up with a hole end up in the cylinder wall and the engine starts to hydrolock.

    Once the engine hydrolocks then you have problems it is time for a rebuilt. I owned a 7.3 IDI it was okay but it was gutless.
  4. hosejockey2002

    hosejockey2002 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,195

    Like was said before they are a solid engine but gutless, especially in something large. Our FD used to have F350 ambulances with the 7.3 IDI and they were SLOW. Even slight grades on the freeway would slow them down. They don't pull anything like modern diesels.
  5. Imow4u2

    Imow4u2 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 377

    Yeah, I hear you all bashing the old diesels,, Slow, smokey, ugly.. I will tell you that my 6.0 screams with a trailer where my 6.9 just lumbers along.. The difference is the days my '05 has been in for recalls,repairs vs. my '85.. The old iron has a better % of being on the job making $$ These IDI's all perform better W a standard trans. Only the late 7.3's had the E4od With a lock-up converter.. The old 6.9's used a C-6 which was bulletproof but not efficient W no lock-up.

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