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Hey everyone. My father-in-law just gave me an 87 C10 that has a 6.2 swap. We tried to crank it the other day but it won't fire. It has probably sat for about 5 years or more.

I read just now that it could take an hour for the engine to self-prime if we do 15 seconds of crank attempts with some pauses in between to avoid burning up the starter. We certainly didn't try for that long.

I thought I'd introduce myself and see if there were any other suggestions as well. I'm a computer guy eager to learn about wrenching.

Steve
 

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Adding an electric lift pump ( ie. from a 6.5L) can help with priming your fuel system.
 

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First things first, are you seeing a glow plug light when you turn the key on? If not that's where to look first. It wont hit without glows cold. From there, are you seeing any smoke out the tailpipes? If so you're getting fuel and the glow plugs aren't heating up enough or at all.

If the fuel system isn't primed the best way to do it is pull all 8 glow plugs and crank about 15 seconds at a time while someone watches the glow plug holes for mist to come out. Once that happens, put the glow plugs back in, light them up for a few then crank that girl over! Should spit and stutter for a few seconds then start to pick up and smooth out. Done this plenty of times with good results.

After you start it and you come back the next day and it wont start again you are going to have to start looking for air leaks. Bad rubber lines or fuel tank switching valve are super common. The lines have to be completely sealed or you will have to crank the air out every time.

Good luck and welcome to the fun!
 
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Another way is to use the exhaust from a vacuums in the tank. Open the drain and vent valves on filter assembly. Mine is an 85 so I don't know if your filter for 6.2 is same, but I think it is. Once you get fuel coming out of drain. Close it and when fuel comes out of vent close it. May be best to put in new filter first. Make sure fuel and not water coming out of drain.

My dads idea, and it works is to disconnect glow plug relay or pull fuse and use wd-40 as a starting fluid. It will run pretty good on wd-40. After it starts firing you will need to bleed injectors. Just pick an easy one to get to and crack the line a little till you see a little seepage then tighten it back up and move on to next one. As you bleed each one it will start to run a little smoother, and will take less wd-40. We did this so we didn't have to use the starter as much.

Mine sat in a warehouse for 7 years. The tank was full when I left it, when I came back I was down to about 5/8 tank. I pulled the wire on the injector pump to turn it over with starter to get a little oil pressure before I was going to start for real, but I couldn't remember and pulled the wrong one. After about 20 seconds cranking it fired right up.

Ran it for about 15 mins, then changed oil. Then Drove to fill back up with diesel.
 

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I've Hydrolocked engines priming and starting. Bends valves. Experience dictates:

Ensure fuel (shut-off) clicks in IP with energized pink wire connected.

Remove all Gp's. Add booster if owned, crank for 1 minute with fittings cracked open (1/8)turn and WOT. Energize LP if equipped also. Close lines with prime (while cranking if possible).

Misting atomized fuel (bad) ventilation.... Each cylinder will mist heavily white......

Allow starter to rest for a minute, or up to 30 if necessary. Replace GP"s use only AcDelco 60g self-limiting. Autolite I don't care for. Ruined engineS.... Will fail and swell into head.

Energize GP 'S reapply boost if available. (meaning starting amperage) and crank WOT until running smooth. Use half pedal and BLIP if running rough .

Timing is critical also.

Years of research on DP
 

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On the glow plug note, I will also recommend the Bosch Duraterm plugs. They have been VERY good to me.
 
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