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  #1  
Old 12-09-2012, 06:39 PM
Chris in Idaho Chris in Idaho is offline
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Default Is a 6.2L a good engine for my 1988 V30 Crew Cab?

Hi guys I'm new here and have always had Chevy trucks but have never owned a diesel. I know asking for opinions on the 6.2 in the 6.2 forum might bring predictably biased answers but let me explain why I'm asking.
I have a 1988 V30 Crew Cab 4x4 with a 454/SM465/NP205 and 3.73:1 gears. The last time I left the dump they said the truck weighed 6,300lbs. I use this truck primarily for gathering firewood and other chores in the woods. I really enjoy driving it and would like to drive it more but of course can't afford the gas. I've always been interested in diesels and the ability to experiment with waste fuels and such. I have heard of mixed results of people running WVO or WMO in these Detroits, but lets make that the subject of a different thread. What I want to know about is the reliability of the 6.2 in a truck like mine (assuming it's burning D2 from the pump).

In my internet reading about the 6.2 diesels I hear of people with Blazers and half ton p/u's giving them the highest praise for awe inspiring fuel mileage and longevity, and at the same time people with heavier trucks and heavy tow loads seem to curse them and have nothing but problems. Is this an accurate summary?

Is it fair to say that these engines are best suited to lighter duty jobs?

I don't normally have anything to tow, and I'm not into driving trucks like hotrods (don't be confused, I do like hotrods!). Loads of firewood can get relatively heavy, well in excess of a ton, but that's about the max I'll be hauling.

Would my application work a 6.2 harder than its comfort level?

I'm in the process of swapping on some 36" Hummer tires to help me roll through the deep ruts that develop on our forest service roads and also to help pull down my cruising RPM. With my 4 speed and 3.73s I should cruise in the 2300rpm neighborhood.

Is this a comfortable cruising RPM for a 6.2?

Is there a favorite year or package of 6.2 for swapping?

Any tricks to help them stay together?

Thanks very much in advance for your guidance.

Chris
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  #2  
Old 12-09-2012, 08:11 PM
Yukon6.2 Yukon6.2 is offline
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Hi Chris
I basicaly have the same truck as you.It was my first diesel,i found this site and fell in love with it.I'v scronged up enough parts and trucks to keep driving it forever.Mine has 4:10 gears and a TH400, i find myself driving in the upper end of rpms,one day it will get the 3:73 axles i have for it,also the 6.5 and turbo.
But it does fine now,i'v been driving it for about 8 yrs as my work truck.It pulls my trailer when ever i have to haul something,i have a S220 Bobcat and i pull it around fine,some big hills i'm down to 30 MPH,but it still makes it up the hill.Parts are cheep,the truck i bought that has the new 6.5 in it was set up for veggie oil,a FAST fuel system and a Veggie system,i forget which.
And this yr i got 88 drums of veggie oil delivered to me with a $1000.00 credit on a loader i bought,so some day i need to experiment with veggie too.
If i keep the speed down i'll get around 17 MPG,but that is the canadien gal.
When i got mine the motor had lost a frost plug.I installed a girdle,timing gears,and a set of rebuilt heads.I'v put about 45k on it.
Thomas
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90 Chev 3500 c/c 4x4,6.2na,400 auto,4:10 gears.DSG Timing gears,main girdle, isspro tach, pyro,boost,oil and trany temp.Dual Tstats, High volume peninsular pump,on shelf, Custom turbo and intercooler 85%complete. Change of plans for the dually, it's going to get a Cummins. Both trucks are Blue 90 4x4 crews
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  #3  
Old 12-10-2012, 05:23 AM
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sctrailrider sctrailrider is offline
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I would think you would like it a lot.....

I do think you will be turning more RPM's than you think tho... I had the granny 4 speed W/3.73 gears and it did just fine and got close to 20mpg.... You might look for a nv4500 tranny and you will be very happy with a OD gear....
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1991 GMC K2500 SLX - traded

1993 CCDRW
Coming soon, frame off resto, Cummins 6bt swap.

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  #4  
Old 12-10-2012, 02:33 PM
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More Power More Power is offline
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Something to help explain the 6.2L.

The 6.2L diesel isn't that powerful (130hp/240 lb-ft at the crank), but it was intended to replace the smogged up gas 305 V-8s in the early 1980s, to keep GM truck owners in a GM truck when gas prices doubled.

A turbocharger will improve power considerably - think FI 350 from the 1990s, in terms of capability.

An overdrive transmission will give you 4-5 mpg over what you're seeing now, and will make it a lot more pleasurable to drive at freeway speeds.

Jim
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  #5  
Old 12-10-2012, 05:37 PM
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Edahall Edahall is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris in Idaho View Post
I really enjoy driving it and would like to drive it more but of course can't afford the gas.
Chris
It used to be true you could save money running a diesel vehicle but that savings has been greatly diminished with the price of diesel these days. In Texas where I live, diesel costs nearly 25% more than gasoline ($3.79 vs $2.94). Diesel engines are about 30-35% more fuel efficient than a similar sized gas engine which means there is very little savings (with the current price of diesel compared to gasoline).
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1990 ton 4x4 Chevy Suburban
-Cummins Diesel - 12 valve - factory rebuilt
-6 speed bullet proof manual transmission - NV5600
-Gear Vendors Overdrive
-Upgraded Holset HX-35 turbo
-NP205 iron transfer case
-3.73 gears

1982 ton Chevy Suburban
-6.2L diesel - high nickle crack free 1982 block
-Stans headers
-Ported heads
-Timing gear
-4 speed automatic
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-30 mpg on freeway
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  #6  
Old 12-17-2012, 07:38 PM
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crashz crashz is offline
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I've had (2) 4x4 pickup trucks with the 6.2L diesel and they were both adequate with power and speed. Both of them were 83's, the one with 3.73s was better on the highway. The one with 4.10s is the one in my signature, and I swapped in a 454 for better power back when gas was less than a buck a gallon.

I never had the 454 perfect, but it had more power than the 6.2 by far.

I currently have a 6.2 in a 1987 1 ton dump (4x4, TH400), and it seems to be way under powered with or without a load. I know its about 8k lbs empty, but it has to downshift to 1st on the steep hills in my area. My father had an 86 with the 350 (same truck) that had a carb'ed 350 and the trucks seemed about the same. In a heavy dump truck, they were both underpowered. The 350 had the benefit of a higher rpm range though, so it didn't feel quite as out-of-breath.

I think you will notice a big power difference, especially loaded. If you do decide on this swap, a turbo would a great idea now rather than later.
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  #7  
Old 12-19-2012, 01:15 PM
Chris in Idaho Chris in Idaho is offline
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Thanks everybody for the feedback.

Power:
I expect there to be a big difference in power but I'm not too concerned about that. I'm currently running a Rochester 2bbl carburetor on my 454 and I never seem to need more than half throttle. The type of performance I really enjoy from the 454 is the brute low end. My primary truck chore is gathering firewood and sometimes the trees drop in such a way that they get really stuck. Whats left of the branches stick themselves down into the dirt and sometimes the tree will fall between other trees that pinch it. When I choke onto it and hook the other end of the cable to the truck I really enjoy just letting the big block idle in 1st gear low range and hearing the cracking and popping as the tree gets ripped out of its stronghold and slowly slides up to the road. My understanding is that the diesels will offer this same kind of low end torque. My concern with the diesel being under powered is that I will be consistently pulling too much power from the diesel on the road and cause premature failure. That's what I'm primarily wondering about when I ask "is the 6.2 a good engine for my crew cab?"

Economy:
My most recent tank of gas worked out to 11.8mpg. I think this is pretty good for a relatively heavy non OD big block powered truck. I'm not expecting the 6.2 to double my mileage, but I do think it would do somewhat better. In my mind the real savings, and the possibility of using the truck as a daily driver, comes from burning waste fuels that I can get for free or very cheap. I know many people will feel this is a bad idea, and I don't want this thread to turn into an argument about why burning ATF will destroy engines... we'll have that thread later. I'm still researching waste fuels.

I guess my primary question in this thread is can I expect reliable service from a 6.2L diesel swap in my 1988 crew cab? It doesn't matter how much money I save on fuel if the crank snaps at the end of the day on the back side of Spades Mountain.

I'm encouraged to hear that Yukon6.2 and Sctrailrider are having good success and what sounds to me like great economy without overdrives. And I do like the idea of adding a turbo and related manifolds from a 6.5, but I don't think I'd want to turn the fuel up. Does this effect reliability?

By the way if anybody's interested, swapping from 245/75r16 tires to 36x12.5r16.5 tires gave me an increase from 11.1 to 11.8mpg based on the first tank of gas. I didn't have to lift the truck (one ton frames are already a little taller), only needed to trim the lip at the very back inside the front fender well. I may still choose to lift it.
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  #8  
Old 12-20-2012, 05:53 PM
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93GMCSierra 93GMCSierra is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris in Idaho View Post
Thanks everybody for the feedback.

Power:
I expect there to be a big difference in power but I'm not too concerned about that. I'm currently running a Rochester 2bbl carburetor on my 454 and I never seem to need more than half throttle. The type of performance I really enjoy from the 454 is the brute low end. My primary truck chore is gathering firewood and sometimes the trees drop in such a way that they get really stuck. Whats left of the branches stick themselves down into the dirt and sometimes the tree will fall between other trees that pinch it. When I choke onto it and hook the other end of the cable to the truck I really enjoy just letting the big block idle in 1st gear low range and hearing the cracking and popping as the tree gets ripped out of its stronghold and slowly slides up to the road. My understanding is that the diesels will offer this same kind of low end torque. My concern with the diesel being under powered is that I will be consistently pulling too much power from the diesel on the road and cause premature failure. That's what I'm primarily wondering about when I ask "is the 6.2 a good engine for my crew cab?"

Economy:
My most recent tank of gas worked out to 11.8mpg. I think this is pretty good for a relatively heavy non OD big block powered truck. I'm not expecting the 6.2 to double my mileage, but I do think it would do somewhat better. In my mind the real savings, and the possibility of using the truck as a daily driver, comes from burning waste fuels that I can get for free or very cheap. I know many people will feel this is a bad idea, and I don't want this thread to turn into an argument about why burning ATF will destroy engines... we'll have that thread later. I'm still researching waste fuels.

I guess my primary question in this thread is can I expect reliable service from a 6.2L diesel swap in my 1988 crew cab? It doesn't matter how much money I save on fuel if the crank snaps at the end of the day on the back side of Spades Mountain.

I'm encouraged to hear that Yukon6.2 and Sctrailrider are having good success and what sounds to me like great economy without overdrives. And I do like the idea of adding a turbo and related manifolds from a 6.5, but I don't think I'd want to turn the fuel up. Does this effect reliability?

By the way if anybody's interested, swapping from 245/75r16 tires to 36x12.5r16.5 tires gave me an increase from 11.1 to 11.8mpg based on the first tank of gas. I didn't have to lift the truck (one ton frames are already a little taller), only needed to trim the lip at the very back inside the front fender well. I may still choose to lift it.
My Opinion turbo the 6.2 from the start or go 6.5 turbo right away. You may loose a little fuel economy but you will have the low end torque you want.

Nice looking truck
Oh and my thoughts on the waste fuel, filter it very well, and be prepared to change fuel filters more often unless you go with a specialized waste fuel system.
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Last edited by 93GMCSierra; 12-20-2012 at 06:04 PM.
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  #9  
Old 12-20-2012, 08:30 PM
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Vin82k3500 Vin82k3500 is offline
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Default 6.2 6.5 my 2 cents

well I can tell you on my end I really like the 6.2 and I am now running a p400 6.5 only because I wanted a NEW engine I pull heavy loads through the woods haul cars horses boats rv s ect. I dont even have a turbo nv4500 transmission and an na 6.2 is all you need in my opinion if your hauling through the mountains you may want to give her some boost but i get by with none no issues been on the road with my truck more than I have been home have had since I was a teenager and I will be 40 in a couple months
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  #10  
Old 12-20-2012, 08:46 PM
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Vin82k3500 Vin82k3500 is offline
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forgot to mention I love these engines they are simple and easy to work on and need very little to run in mechanical form compression and fuel thats it make sure glows are working right and fuel system is up to par and you got a maytag I was happy with my 4.3 v6 cause I could beat it like a red headed stepchild and get decent mileage in fact I perfered it to gas v8s because even though I beat it like I caught it in bed with my wife it got me better mileage than any gas burning v8 I ever owned but the gm diesel is getting me all that and more and Im NOT beating it like I caught it breaking into my house to yeah you get what I mean it is serving me very well but I dont race either so I cant say how fast it is I have never gone over 75 which is the posted speed limit where I live oy hauls my loads effortlessly and is getting great mileage It is very satisfying ro me many have gone to a cummins But I had a dodge with one and noise level was very unsatisfying and overall fuel economy and off idle power were a compromise compared to my 6.2 and my P400 6.5 and with that rattling loud nuttless cummins I had to watch my egts I could not haul 6500 pounds up a 5 percent grade without worrying that I may be melting my pistons this is only my experience but understand I push my pickup WAY beyond the mechanical limits of a pickup.
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