starting my diesel swap, 4cyl MB diesel engine into 89 Astro

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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Re: starting my diesel swap, 4cyl MB diesel engine into 89 A

Post by tinworm » Sat Dec 21, 2013 10:16 pm

doyoulikeithere wrote:like I was sayin. those 235-75s might be a tad large for the front.
My fronts rubbed before trimming with a 4" lift.
I heard the NV4500 is a good GBX.

all my issues with the depth of the clutch have stemmed from this adapter being designed for the NV3500, 4500, and 5500 transmissions. A swap that would definitely work would be the 3500, it will have the medium duty gearing.

However, first im going to play with the flywheel depth again and see if I can't get it worked out. The engines seem to have different depth crank bolt patterns on the back end, which is really inconvenient as i assumed they were identical.

I did read here and on the other forum about your grabbing issue with the tires, im playing the odds hoping its not a problem for me. I don't have most of the inner shielding anyway. There were a lot of accounts of people reporting no rubbing in their experience, so we will see.

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Re: starting my diesel swap, 4cyl MB diesel engine into 89 A

Post by tinworm » Mon Dec 23, 2013 6:59 pm

going to go look at a POS rusted out 1996 1500 parts truck that has the NV3500 (hopefully, seller claims).

Ill never figure this depth issue out if I don't compare the transmission bell and input shaft depth differences with both transmissions side by side. The adapter is made for the NV3500, so I should be able to get some good measurements and either get the T5 to be exactly correct, or just use the NV3500 instead and put the T5 in something else.

Fortunately, there are no shortage of 500 dollar 5-speed rusty chevy trucks on craigslist at the moment in the correct year ranges.

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Re: starting my diesel swap, 4cyl MB diesel engine into 89 A

Post by doyoulikeithere » Mon Dec 23, 2013 11:26 pm

tinworm wrote:going to go look at a POS rusted out 1996 1500 parts truck that has the NV3500 (hopefully, seller claims).

Ill never figure this depth issue out if I don't compare the transmission bell and input shaft depth differences with both transmissions side by side. The adapter is made for the NV3500, so I should be able to get some good measurements and either get the T5 to be exactly correct, or just use the NV3500 instead and put the T5 in something else.

Fortunately, there are no shortage of 500 dollar 5-speed rusty chevy trucks on craigslist at the moment in the correct year ranges.
They put the NV3500 behind the 4.3 in S-10/Jimmy/Blazer as well, just FYI...
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Re: starting my diesel swap, 4cyl MB diesel engine into 89 A

Post by 1Gary » Tue Dec 24, 2013 5:34 am

Yep- I got one in Rufus.I was told those are not any stronger than the T5's.
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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......


Rochester,NY

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Re: starting my diesel swap, 4cyl MB diesel engine into 89 A

Post by doyoulikeithere » Tue Dec 24, 2013 8:15 am

1Gary wrote:Yep- I got one in Rufus.I was told those are not any stronger than the T5's.
Thats exactly why I had suggested the 4500.
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Re: starting my diesel swap, 4cyl MB diesel engine into 89 A

Post by tinworm » Tue Dec 24, 2013 11:57 am

It sounds like its a superior transmission to the non WC T5 though, from all accounts. Maybe the WC T5 and NV transmissions are equivilant.

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Re: starting my diesel swap, 4cyl MB diesel engine into 89 A

Post by HPbyStan » Tue Dec 24, 2013 7:13 pm

doyoulikeithere wrote:
tinworm wrote:going to go look at a POS rusted out 1996 1500 parts truck that has the NV3500 (hopefully, seller claims).

Ill never figure this depth issue out if I don't compare the transmission bell and input shaft depth differences with both transmissions side by side. The adapter is made for the NV3500, so I should be able to get some good measurements and either get the T5 to be exactly correct, or just use the NV3500 instead and put the T5 in something else.

Fortunately, there are no shortage of 500 dollar 5-speed rusty chevy trucks on craigslist at the moment in the correct year ranges.
They put the NV3500 behind the 4.3 in S-10/Jimmy/Blazer as well, just FYI...
WOW, just checked Craigs List around here for spits & giggles. Mid to late '90s Chevy pickups in Wisconsin must have Gold in them.
'04 White AWD Astro cargo
'00 Astro / El Camino
'61 BSA Super Rocket
'71 BSA B50 engine in a '67 C25 250 chassis
Impossible is just a degree of difficulty....

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Re: starting my diesel swap, 4cyl MB diesel engine into 89 A

Post by tinworm » Thu Dec 26, 2013 6:26 pm

Tirerack claus came through and some rubber has arrived-

Image

Im interested to see if these tires really fit on the front of these vans. The size difference is astonishing, looking forward to having them installed as soon as I get the tranny put back up. There are a lot of conflicting first hand accounts, so it seems like a van by van thing. Im convinced the van will look good with these tires, but looking good and turning are different things. :D

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Re: starting my diesel swap, 4cyl MB diesel engine into 89 A

Post by doyoulikeithere » Thu Dec 26, 2013 8:50 pm

Santa ! What a great guy !! Those look purdy !

Could be that besides van by van, there are tire by tire differences involved as well.
not all 235-75's were created equal, and the small amount of difference could account for rub vs no rub.

Also driving styles might make the diff. I drive my vans hard and hit hard bumps and turn sharp under full power and all that. I like to do donuts etc...
Some folks drive like a tea sipping granny on pavement only, slowing down for every little dip and bump, and never boot the gas pedal, especially when turning a sharp corner, oh no !

I hope they work out for you, and as I said earlier, you could always add a leaf, and put back your stock spindles. They should fit OK on your 3.5" lifted van FRONT with maybe a little trimming.
Wishing the best of luck for you in the new year! Cheers.
:supz:
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Re: starting my diesel swap, 4cyl MB diesel engine into 89 A

Post by tinworm » Mon Jan 06, 2014 6:59 pm

so, some developments-

I have been in New Venture gearbox mania. I sourced a NV3500 gearbox out of a 1994 chevy 1500 6 banger, and in the process of finding the correct gearbox, also grabbed a 1999 NV1500 out of a 99 S10 4 banger.

The original purpose was I couldn't find a non 4x4 NV3500, so was looking for a possible tailcone swap candidate, but it turns out they can't really share that part between the two gearboxes. However, keeping it around as it looks suspiciously close to another benz diesel family OM60x bell pattern.

Starters on the correct side, though a bit too low. Worth hanging onto and taking a look down the line. Maybe an s10 with the NV1500 would be an good swap candidate for other families of benz motors.

Returning to the NV3500, I lucked out looking at a 4x4 gearbox and transfer case, the guy turned out to have a 2wd sitting under a work bench unadvertised with about 100k on it.

here are a few pics of the gearboxes-

s10 on the left, 1500 on the right (with the correct 6 and 8 cyl bell pattern I need)

Image

notice the different locations for the shifters. One of the other reasons for grabbing the s10 gearbox was moving the shifter back if I need to, but I don't think its possible or necessary. We will see soon enough-

Image

The NV3500 has an external slave like the T5, but its clear on the opposite side of the bell under the starter, so some re-routing will have to occur if I swap gearboxes. Looking on the van, there appears to be enough room, interesting location for it though

Image



Also another development is I mounted these huge tires. we will see if it can turn, I remain in possible doubt with the stock wheels. The size difference is not small. :mrgreen:

Image

Looks like it might be a little tight in the front-

Image

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Re: starting my diesel swap, 4cyl MB diesel engine into 89 A

Post by tinworm » Sat Jan 25, 2014 10:58 pm

well, bit of a head scratcher to ponder now.

Ive pulled the thing in to dozens of parts again, and I cannot find a single physical issue with the clutch that would be causing the awful noise I heard. like the gearbox starting to eat itself.

Ive also finally had a chance to compare the T5 gearbox with a NV3500 gearbox, and there is no difference between the input shafts as far as depths.

The input shaft on both gearboxes extends 2/8ths past the bell, and the splines start 5/8ths down the shaft. This brings into question some of the early issues i had with the adapter kit, like the pilot bearing adapter wasn't going to work for the NV3500 either.

So now im thinking about taking the T5 apart and looking inside. The noise was awful, and ive found nothing external that would explain it.

If I want to use the NV3500 I now have, I need to change the clutch disc to the correct spline clutch, get a new slave cylinder that matches this bell, and cut another shifter hole for it.

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Re: starting my diesel swap, 4cyl MB diesel engine into 89 A

Post by doyoulikeithere » Sun Jan 26, 2014 2:03 pm

I was just enjoying the 5 speed in my van, yesterday. Ahhhhh........
Sorry to hear you ran into such a snag....
Hope you find the source of the terrible cannibalism sounds.
Not more issues with your b/h adapter plate and pilot bearing adapter is it?
The T5 and NV3500 should have the exact same dimensions where it counts.

Personaly, I would stick with the T5.
If I was gonna use an NV, it would be the 4500.
How those big tires fit the front?
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Re: starting my diesel swap, 4cyl MB diesel engine into 89 A

Post by tinworm » Mon Jan 27, 2014 7:10 pm

doyoulikeithere wrote:I was just enjoying the 5 speed in my van, yesterday. Ahhhhh........
Sorry to hear you ran into such a snag....
Hope you find the source of the terrible cannibalism sounds.
Not more issues with your b/h adapter plate and pilot bearing adapter is it?
The T5 and NV3500 should have the exact same dimensions where it counts.

Personaly, I would stick with the T5.
If I was gonna use an NV, it would be the 4500.
How those big tires fit the front?
you nailed it. 100% of my issues have been teething problems with this kit.....

Just goes to show, anything worth doing is worth doing yourself. Ive wasted a considerable amount of time and effort trusting the depth values of the designed kit to be correct in my diagnosis. Its now blatantly clear that this pilot bearing adapter, while very pretty, is made wrong. It has much too shallow a seating surface for a GM pilot bearing, forcing anything stock size into the input shaft clutch spines.

im going on 5 different transmission removal and reinstallations based on trusting the adapter.


what do you prefer in the NV4500 over the NV3500?

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Re: starting my diesel swap, 4cyl MB diesel engine into 89 A

Post by doyoulikeithere » Mon Jan 27, 2014 8:32 pm

tinworm wrote:what do you prefer in the NV4500 over the NV3500?
Well, the NV1500 is just plain wimpy, built for 4 bangers.
The NV3500 isnt stronger than any of the pile of T5s that I have.
If ever I switched from a T5 to ANY NV, it would be from a NEED to be stronger than either the T5 or the NV3500.
The NV4500 is tough as hell in comparison to the others, They put it in 3/4 and 1 ton trucks and 4x4s.
I expect it should be able to handle most V8s for power, and I bet the lower gears are a bunch lower.
Thats nice in a rock crawler like mine. 4-LO 2nd gear and hammer it !! :supz:
Strength may not be such an issue for you as your not thinking about V8s or crawling over rocks and logs.
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Re: starting my diesel swap, 4cyl MB diesel engine into 89 A

Post by tinworm » Tue Jan 28, 2014 9:49 pm

ok, im giving the T5 another try.

Reason being is ive been sitting here with the gearbox turning it in all gears, and nothing, feels great. No clicking, no play, no nothing that would cause worry.

After I pulled the flywheel, I had a good look at the groove cut in the back by my first problems. I finally pulled up a comparison pic of how it looked the first time-

Image

and now-

Image

certainly looks like more, but weirdly, I can find no evidence on the bolts themselves showing they touched. It doesn't seem possible that they are making all that noise and vibration alone, BUT, its so close to my original issue, that there is definitely a likelyhood that this is the culprit. We will see

Image

so what ive decided to do is take that 3mm spacer that I had moved to the front of the flywheel, and move it to the back where I had placed it early on behind the 616.
I moved it around to the front because that was how the kit was designed, and I wanted to move the pilot bearing adapter back by that much, but the clearance is so close, that maybe its touching under load, maybe the flyhweel itself is actually flexing just a tiny bit under load?

anyway, its worth a test install to see what happens with that spacer behind the flywheel again.

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