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6.5L Diesel Engine Discuss the 6.5 GM diesel engine & associated components. Automatic transmission questions & problems belong in the 4L80/85 - 4L60E - 6L90 Transmission Forum


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Old 07-20-2017, 06:37 PM   #1 (permalink)
Injectorsaurus
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My signature truck vs. '96 F350 7.3 diesel dually

So,
My truck was down for the last few weeks, fixing an oil leak and installing the wt grille & transmission cooler, etc. Didn't get it back together in time to go camping, ended up working a lot more than I thought I would. Trying not to complain about that...

Anyway, so I asked a colleague of mine if I could borrow a truck, didn't care what, as long as it had a 5th wheel. I ended up with his pride and joy, '96 F350 dually 7.3 diesel. Hooked it up to my 42' 16,000lbs 5th wheel. And headed out west.

Now, I want to say first, I don't hate Ford. And, I'm not here to tell everyone willing to listen how terrible my experience was. I'm just explaining my experience. More so, because of the so called reputation that the 6.5 diesel has/had being inferior to the 7.3 or 12v. (never driven a 12v) I'm tired of telling people I haul/tow with a 6.5, then watch them snicker and roll their eyes. I'm sure, like most of you here, I'm way too proud of my old truck.

Also, I want to add, I'm trying not to be critical of things like driver comfort, Mirror position, worn front end, ride comfort etc. This thing is 20+ years old, things are worn, but still useful and economical. Glad I was able to use it.

Now, the drive was 90 miles, relatively straight and flat for the first half, rolling hills for the second half, ending with a decent declining switch back. A trip I've made many times with my truck and the old #141 I Swapped out in the winter because of a cracked #8 piston. Haven't done it yet with the new ish #506 and recent improvements. Although I'm just itching too, very disappointed I didn't have mine ready.

Ok, odometer has 200k ish miles. 6 position engine programmer, egt gauge, aftermarket exhaust and 4spd with overdrive. Was unable to get a gross weight, however I do know this truck is 3000-4000lbs heavier than mine. Which I'm taking into consideration. I'm guessing 25,000-28,000lbs gross weight. I was also thoroughly warned about watching high exhaust temps, to which I'm already very used too doing.

So we begin at a set of lights from a dead stop climbing a 2% grade for approximately two miles. Ambient air temperature is 80 degrees Fahrenheit, which for up here is a relatively warm day. My truck has pulled this hill many times carrying more weight in the trailer like a side by side and a cord of wood and always been able to break 50 miles an hour. I couldn't get more than 40 miles an hour out of this Ford. Exhaust temperatures spiked to 1200 degrees within a few seconds. I tried dropping a gear to see if that helps, all it did was drown the traffic behind me in black smoke. And that really was the main issue for the rest of the journey. Constantly having to back out of it to maintain exhaust temperatures. I even tried adjusting the engine programmer, it didn't affect exhaust temperatures at all, all it did was adjust how much smoke I left behind. I quickly realized I couldn't push this thing as hard as I push my 6.5. Now don't get me wrong, I wasn't expecting to break any land speed records. I was just expecting it to compete with my 6.5. Which I can definitely say that it did not do.

Now by this point we reach the switch back. It is roughly an 8% grade for 1.3 miles. This truck had to be in first gear or it would basically run away and I had to ride the brakes. However I will say that the brakes on this truck were by far superior to mine. Also I have to note that reverse gear was so high it needed to be in 4 low in order to back this thing up without riding the clutch.

On the way home, trying to climb the Switchback I stalled nearly halfway because first gear wouldn't do it. I had to drop it into 4 low in order to continue the rest of the way up. My truck has never struggled with this hill like this Ford did. Now for the rest of the way home, the trip was a lot easier than on the way there. According to the owner of the truck this was because the ambient air temperature was only 55 degrees that afternoon. I'm sure the declining elevation to the Prairies from the Foothills was also a contributing factor. I still had to monitor exhaust temperatures but it was probably less than half of what I did on the way up.

All said and done, I'm Grateful he lent me the truck. But did I miss my truck? Absolutely. Am I going to trade it off on a powerstroke? Hell no. It burned roughly 2 times as much fuel as mine would've according to the gauge. Since I don't know how big the tank is, I won't speculate on the mileage. Could've been better, worse, or equal, well never know. The owner keeps bugging me to race which I keep avoiding to spare him the irreversible damage to his pride. I reiterate, that the comments, bad reputation and rolling eyes are, at least in my case, are completing unfounded.

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'96 GMC k3500 crew drw (410,000kms) c/w '98 "F" #506 (190,000kms), WT grille, 2.5" xover dropped 2.5" & welded solid- 3" flopro dp-4" DE straight pipe w/ flopro 6195 glass pack, K47, snorkel deleted, 60G's, Bosch injectors, idle mod, #9~bumper, D-max fan, hayden clutch, quick-connect delete, 5/8" bypass restriction, Feed the Beast, boost, pyro, fuel pressure & trans temp gauges, Derale deep cooling pan, Custom trans cooler lines, tru-cool 40k trans cooler, LeroyDiesel oil cooler lines & 1/2" cooler kit, boost bolt & fuel pressure tap, OPS extension, bypass harness & GP override, Walbro lift pump & turbo drain
06 GMC 2500HD ccsb LBZ
94 Chev C1500 ecsb f-code belltech 7+5 drop
98 Chev C3500 ccdrw belltech 8+5 drop

Quote:
Originally Posted by lindabenson View Post
I took it to a reputable diesel mechanic and he rebuilt the injection pump.

Last edited by Injectorsaurus; 07-20-2017 at 06:38 PM.
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Old 07-20-2017, 09:53 PM   #2 (permalink)
racerx944
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I am sure you have a very well sorted 6.5. I had better luck towing heavier loads with a 7.3 than my 6.5s though the vehicles are not really comparable.

I have a few 6.5 trucks right now and I prefer Chevys over Fords in general.

My experience with a 7.3 powerstroke was with my 1997 25ft minibus towing a 24ft enclosed trailer and my track car. This thing was like a train because both are about the same height with a combined length of around 55ft long.

I get 13mpg and never had any problems towing up the grapevines on the 5 north going out of LA.

My 1997 6.5 burban was heavily strained trying to pull this same rig up the hill but I have gotten 20mpg hauling 5 people and luggage going from LA to Mexicali which includes going up a long stretch of road at 6% grade on the 8 East from San Diego. The 7.3 never got any better than 14.

My 2 cents...

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Old 07-20-2017, 09:59 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Nice to hear.

I'm always surprised how well my trucks perform.

I haven't compared others to them.

I know my 6.2 was nowhere near as fast or responsive as my 94-6.5... I love the 2000 till the ip quit responding to commands...

The 95 burb is weak compared to the others, but a 3.42gear will do that.
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Last edited by vstech; 07-20-2017 at 10:01 PM.
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Old 07-20-2017, 10:09 PM   #4 (permalink)
deejaaa
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i've only driven a 7.3 once and not that far but if the emissions were removed, electronics replaced with mechanical and if the exhaust was straight piped, that thing would be a beast. wait a minute, i just described MY truck, besides the beast part.
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...get it under control or someone might cave in your head someday.....People get killed everyday because of attitudes like yours. All it takes is running into the wrong person at the wrong time. You shoot off your mouth and they shoot off your head and suddenly you're pushing up daisies.
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Old 07-20-2017, 10:16 PM   #5 (permalink)
Injectorsaurus
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Quote:
Originally Posted by racerx944 View Post
I am sure you have a very well sorted 6.5. I had better luck towing heavier loads with a 7.3 than my 6.5s though the vehicles are not really comparable.

I have a few 6.5 trucks right now and I prefer Chevys over Fords in general.

My experience with a 7.3 powerstroke was with my 1997 25ft minibus towing a 24ft enclosed trailer and my track car. This thing was like a train because both are about the same height with a combined length of around 55ft long.

I get 13mpg and never had any problems towing up the grapevines on the 5 north going out of LA.

My 1997 6.5 burban was heavily strained trying to pull this same rig up the hill but I have gotten 20mpg hauling 5 people and luggage going from LA to Mexicali which includes going up a long stretch of road at 6% grade on the 8 East from San Diego. The 7.3 never got any better than 14.

My 2 cents...
1/2 ton or 3/4 ton burb? 3/4 ton or 1ton mini bus?

If your comparing a 1500 burb to a f350 bus, of course the bus will tow/haul better.
__________________
'96 GMC k3500 crew drw (410,000kms) c/w '98 "F" #506 (190,000kms), WT grille, 2.5" xover dropped 2.5" & welded solid- 3" flopro dp-4" DE straight pipe w/ flopro 6195 glass pack, K47, snorkel deleted, 60G's, Bosch injectors, idle mod, #9~bumper, D-max fan, hayden clutch, quick-connect delete, 5/8" bypass restriction, Feed the Beast, boost, pyro, fuel pressure & trans temp gauges, Derale deep cooling pan, Custom trans cooler lines, tru-cool 40k trans cooler, LeroyDiesel oil cooler lines & 1/2" cooler kit, boost bolt & fuel pressure tap, OPS extension, bypass harness & GP override, Walbro lift pump & turbo drain
06 GMC 2500HD ccsb LBZ
94 Chev C1500 ecsb f-code belltech 7+5 drop
98 Chev C3500 ccdrw belltech 8+5 drop

Quote:
Originally Posted by lindabenson View Post
I took it to a reputable diesel mechanic and he rebuilt the injection pump.
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Old 07-20-2017, 10:21 PM   #6 (permalink)
Injectorsaurus
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deejaaa View Post
i've only driven a 7.3 once and not that far but if the emissions were removed, electronics replaced with mechanical and if the exhaust was straight piped, that thing would be a beast. wait a minute, i just described MY truck, besides the beast part.
You just described the 7.3 in post #1, just without the beast part also. I'm telling you, that thing was disappointing.
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'96 GMC k3500 crew drw (410,000kms) c/w '98 "F" #506 (190,000kms), WT grille, 2.5" xover dropped 2.5" & welded solid- 3" flopro dp-4" DE straight pipe w/ flopro 6195 glass pack, K47, snorkel deleted, 60G's, Bosch injectors, idle mod, #9~bumper, D-max fan, hayden clutch, quick-connect delete, 5/8" bypass restriction, Feed the Beast, boost, pyro, fuel pressure & trans temp gauges, Derale deep cooling pan, Custom trans cooler lines, tru-cool 40k trans cooler, LeroyDiesel oil cooler lines & 1/2" cooler kit, boost bolt & fuel pressure tap, OPS extension, bypass harness & GP override, Walbro lift pump & turbo drain
06 GMC 2500HD ccsb LBZ
94 Chev C1500 ecsb f-code belltech 7+5 drop
98 Chev C3500 ccdrw belltech 8+5 drop

Quote:
Originally Posted by lindabenson View Post
I took it to a reputable diesel mechanic and he rebuilt the injection pump.

Last edited by Injectorsaurus; 07-20-2017 at 10:22 PM.
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