change engine

GOT THE URGE FOR BLOWING BLACK SMOKE, NEED TOWING POWER, OR JUST WANT GREAT FUEL ECONOMY? POST UP YOUR DIESEL SWAP QUESTIONS HERE.

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eric888
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change engine

Post by eric888 » Tue Sep 25, 2012 10:23 am

hi guys i am a newbie frm the philippines
i have a astro 1992 with 4.3 v6 gas engine,my question is what is the perfect diesel engine for my astro ?here in manila some mechanics told me to put a hyundai starex D4BH diesel engine,your suggestions will be highly appreciated. tnx

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Re: change engine

Post by LiftedAWDAstro » Tue Sep 25, 2012 11:01 am

I don't know anything about that diesel engine but you will have to make sure you can adapt a transmission. I do see it's a 4 cylinder so I bet it would fit pretty easily. Make sure you post lots of pics of the swap! :supz:
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Vans owned:
1986 Safari 2.5L 4 speed manual - scrapped
1995 Astro 2WD conversion 4.11 posi, shift kit, DHC rock rails - sold to Skippy
1998 Astro 4x4 D44, D60, NP231, full hydraulic system with 9k# Milemarker winch and snow plow - sold to Lockdoc
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Re: change engine

Post by doyoulikeithere » Tue Sep 25, 2012 7:08 pm

I have heard that:
Chevy did produce a 4.3 litre V6 diesel with the same basic engine block as our 4.3 van engines.
So I bet it would fit real nice....
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Re: change engine

Post by mdmead » Tue Sep 25, 2012 9:53 pm

LiftedAWDAstro wrote:I don't know anything about that diesel engine but you will have to make sure you can adapt a transmission. I do see it's a 4 cylinder so I bet it would fit pretty easily. Make sure you post lots of pics of the swap! :supz:
If you are dealing with a 2wd van, then it wouldn't really be a problem to use the diesel's transmission, assuming it was an automatic.
Matt
Selah, WA
-96 GMC Safari AWD Hi-Top Conversion -->Stalled 5.3L swap & 5" lift
-74 Ford Bronco -->Far from perfect but mine!
-99 V-10 Ford Super Duty Super Cab 4x4 -->Stock with 285 Cooper ATs
-00 Ford Focus Wagon -->The Red Turd
-95 Ford 24' Class C Motorhome -->My big block sleeper
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Re: change engine

Post by 1Gary » Wed Sep 26, 2012 12:33 am

Eric welcome.A few yrs a I ran into a guy in a thread that said he worked for a company in Argentina.He posted his company at a auction bought a fleet of used Astro's from Japan.They had GM Chevy new van price stickers still on the windows. The vans had in them Isuzu diesels which used the T5 stick shift 5 speed trannies. Best he could figure out was Chevy sold these vans to a outfitter in Japan and they did the swap.He said these vans in the mountains where the best they ever had and would climb them no sweat.

The point of this post is to tell you it has been done before.I am trying to find that thread which I didn't think to bookmark it.I post a ref link if I do run across it.
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1999 Sonoma 4.3 5 speed-Rufus
1989 Astro-Ole Yellar cancelled-still selling off parts
1985 Astro-shop van R.I.P. my friend
1994 Astro LT RWD W4.3 rod knock RIP
1982 Winnebago single rear wheel-Chevy 350 Scraped 1/28/13-broken dreams......


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Re: change engine

Post by 1Gary » Wed Sep 26, 2012 1:04 am

I am going to correct myself.Here is a copy of the post I thought of and no I didn't ever get the pictures,I do believe him.

Hi Gary, I'm Steve.
The Safari I'm describing is the Astro Twin. Not a full size van. Surely you know GMC makes the Safari Mini van! They're almost identical to the Astro but for the grille and I think the headlight might be a little different. Google 2006 GMC Safari. We purchased the vans new from a company in Malaysia. They started life in Michigan.
I don't know if Malaysia or some of the other countries like that special ordered them like this or if an aftermarket type shop converted them. I know all labels stickers etc. indicate a factory job. The owners manual is in english and it describes exactly what they are with the diesel, so a factory special order is looking strong.
Some countries can get vehicles from the big three that we can't buy in the U.S. For instance the 4 door full size four wheel drive Chevy/GMC trucks (K1500) were available in Brazil years before the U.S.
Anyway the vans are awesome for what we use them for. Top speed on the island is 35MPH. The terrain is volcanic mountains. 2 lane roads barely wide enough for 2 cars to pass. Incredibly steep inclines, switchbacks etc. We can carry close to the full load cap with no problem.
We searched far and wide for these vans. They're 2006's by the way, bought new in Dec 2007. The Astros and Safaris we had with the 4.3 4L60e and 3.23's would never shift out of 2nd gear. We mostly kept them in 1st. In the 4l60e First gear is 3.08:1, 2nd is 1.63:1. A huge difference.
So we put 4.56's in the rear that increased RPMs by 29.16 %, Increased torque by 29.17. An awesome increase that allows them to finally be able to carry more than the driver, his lunchbox, and a cup of coffee!
The diesel vans with a 5spd is great. Not such a wide ratio, you can control shift points better, and of course the diesel makes all of it's torque and HP at low rpm's.
As soon as I get back to the island I'll post pics. I'm in the U.S. now on a business trip.
Oh and another benefit of the diesel is it can be left idling for extended periods of time allowing use of a power invertor and the A/C can stay on. A big thing when it's always HOT.
Steve
1979 Malibu drag race only car
1999 Sonoma 4.3 5 speed-Rufus
1989 Astro-Ole Yellar cancelled-still selling off parts
1985 Astro-shop van R.I.P. my friend
1994 Astro LT RWD W4.3 rod knock RIP
1982 Winnebago single rear wheel-Chevy 350 Scraped 1/28/13-broken dreams......


Rochester,NY

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Re: change engine

Post by Ironhide » Sun Oct 08, 2017 1:51 pm

I have been researching a diesel swap for my 2001 Safari. The ultimate would be the new Cummins R2.8 crate engine, the first of a new series of crate engines with everything you need to install it. The "kit" includes electronics and wiring. You can view these engines on youtube. The catch is it cost $10,000.00, and they are releasing only 500 units in 2017. At this point of my research I am considering the Isuzu 4BD1 PW or the 4BD2 turbo equiped of course, 4 cylinder. The torque is about the same as the 4.3. The hp is a lot less, but I've read the the torque is the most important factor when selecting a diesel. The other factor with the Isuzu engine is there a lot of them out there, and they are comparatively cost effective. I am still researching the of adapting a beefed up 4L60E, or even a newer 6 speed GM automatic!
But my whole reason for going diesel is FUEL MILEAGE! I want to extend the range of my van to do some serious overlanding.

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Re: change engine

Post by AstroWill » Sun Oct 08, 2017 4:57 pm

Ironhide wrote:I have been researching a diesel swap for my 2001 Safari. The ultimate would be the new Cummins R2.8 crate engine, the first of a new series of crate engines with everything you need to install it. The "kit" includes electronics and wiring. You can view these engines on youtube. The catch is it cost $10,000.00, and they are releasing only 500 units in 2017.
Probably closer to 11-12,000 by the time you are done, engine mounts, transmissions or adapters, drive shaft(s), AC compressor/adapter/hoses/etc. You could buy 4000+ gallons of gasoline just for the price of the conversion.
Ironhide wrote:But my whole reason for going diesel is FUEL MILEAGE! I want to extend the range of my van to do some serious overlanding.
In all honesty though, maybe adding a 5gal aux tank under the van would get you the range you want without the massive expense.

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Re: change engine

Post by Ironhide » Sun Oct 08, 2017 6:17 pm

That is true, and I am looking into that too. Problem is I'm only getting 13 mpg combined right now. Well you know I am pretty shrude and persistence leads me to some pretty good deals. The prospect of getting double the fuel mileage is very tempting, and having an extra 5 to 12 gallons of diesel would be even better. But I am still in the research stage. We'll see what I come up with.
It is good to have your input though! Thank you.

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Re: change engine

Post by mdmead » Sun Oct 08, 2017 6:22 pm

A diesel conversion would be cool from the engineering and 'dare to be different' point of view, but I agree it is far from cost effective. I'd have to side with AstroWill on this one. I'd guess for $1,000, you could have a custom tank fabricated that would improve your range to exceed that of a diesel swap using the stock tank.

One problem with a diesel swap is the fact the 4.3L engine is just so good. Bulletproof. And cheap to repair when needed. I'd be far more inclined to spend money on a small block or LS V-8 swap; both of which would have little impact on fuel economy, are also bulletproof, but would provide a tangible increase in performance. (And of course you could still go with the bigger fuel tank.)

The new Cummins diesel crate engine is a cool piece for sure!

Certainly if you go forward, document it here! This group loves drivetrain upgrades! (If you've checked the archives, I'm sure you have seen the 502 swap, M-B diesel swap, and also a 6.5 GM turbo diesel [as I recall].)
Matt
Selah, WA
-96 GMC Safari AWD Hi-Top Conversion -->Stalled 5.3L swap & 5" lift
-74 Ford Bronco -->Far from perfect but mine!
-99 V-10 Ford Super Duty Super Cab 4x4 -->Stock with 285 Cooper ATs
-00 Ford Focus Wagon -->The Red Turd
-95 Ford 24' Class C Motorhome -->My big block sleeper
-07 Can-Am Outlander XT -->My yellow 4x4 quad for work & play
-04 Ski Doo REV Summit -->Still several chassis behind!


No new projects until the current ones are done!

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Re: change engine

Post by Ironhide » Mon Oct 09, 2017 4:54 pm

Thank you guys. I really haven't looked into the V8 swap, or for that matter performance/fuel mileage improvements to the 4.3. It just occurred to me as to what would a newer 6 speed auto transmission do for mileage? In any case I will press on with my research. I will post any revelations I come up with.

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