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High Performance Diesel Engines

By Bruce Mallinson

August, 2017

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Hi-flow exhaust manifolds, we have talked about the exhaust manifolds many times over the years, so now I wanted to show you pictures of the difference of the Full Tilt Pittsburgh Power manifold and the competitors manifold and stock OEM manifolds. I realize looking at the pictures it’s hard to see our manifold is 20% larger on the inside diameter, however you can easily see Full Tilt has eliminated the 90-degree bends and made all of them 45 degrees. Please keep in mind that every 90 degrees turn in the intake piping, exhaust piping and fuel lines is equivalent to 13 feet of straight pipe. Exhaust does not like to flow around 90 degree turns. With the Full Tilt manifold on your engine the fuel mileage will improve by ¼ mpg, the exhaust gas temperature will decrease by 125 degrees, and the throttle response will be quicker. The other benefits are they are made in the USA using cast iron from our country. It’s a proven fact that cast iron from China is NOT as strong as the USA cast iron. Why do you think the diesel engine industry is having so many cracked heads and cracked exhaust manifolds? All the OEM castings are now from China. That is another reason we at Pittsburgh Power prefer to install 180 degrees thermostats on the engines we build, to try and keep the cylinder head cooler to avoid cracking. The turbine housings on turbochargers are also cast in China, and yes there are more of those being cracked since 2003 than in the history of the diesel engine. Anytime you can have USA cast iron, the longevity of the part is much longer.

For many years the diesel engine in the semi-truck and the Dodge Cummins pickup truck was the emphasis of our work. 11 years ago, when we moved into our new facility we started working on transmissions, clutches and drive shafts. We continued to expand into the electronics of the engine and the MD Alignment System. As it turns out, when doing wheel alignments, you will find wore out suspension components, so now we do some suspension work along with brakes, drums, and of course the entire electrical system of the truck. Many of the mechanics we have today are well versed on the entire mechanical aspect of the semi-truck. It just became a natural evolvement to continue to do more mechanical repairs on the truck. The following is a list of the work we are currently doing on a 2006 ISX powered Volvo 880 with 1.3 million miles on the odometer:

•The engine fan groans and the belts squeal when the fan comes on.

•Oil pressure is down 17 pounds of pressure since the customer had a new oil pan installed.

•Replace the oil pump, pick up tube was hit at one time from a broken rod with the previous owner, and replace the block stiffener plate, it also was distorted from the broken rod.

•Replace the water pump, inspect the rod and main bearings, replace radiator, replace the fittings on the air compressor and check air leaks.

•Rebuild the drive shaft, balance and straighten, new U joints and carrier bearing.

•Replace steering shaft, and move the exhaust stack to the other side, and install load lock racks.

•Install a new pyrometer, tune the engine and dyno run. Lower the parameter for the engine fan to come on 5 degrees sooner. Verify the RPM reading on the Kevin Rutherford scan gauge.

•Inspect the input shaft speed sensors, barometric pressor sensor, turbo boost sensor, leaking turbo air control valve, turbo speed sensor, Delta P sensor, I.M.A.P. sensor, exhaust pressure sensor, coolant temp sensor.

•Replace the leveling valves, cab and engine mounts, check the power divider, and rear differentials. The rear brakes need replaced, the bearings were turning on the axle spindles, so we must replace the axle housings or have the Axle Surgeons replace the spindles.

This is quite a list of repairs, possible the most extensive list of repairs at one time we have ever performed on a truck. Sometimes an owner-operator will purchase a used truck and leave it at our shop with a long list of repairs, however we usually have that truck for about 2 to 3 months to make it right. The above-mentioned job is going to be completed in about 2 weeks.

Written by Bruce Mallinson, Pittsburgh Power Inc., 3600 South Noah Dr., Saxonburg, PA 16056

Phone 724-360-4080

Website: Pittsburghpower.com