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Char,

I think the "adapter" for the 7.3 was put in place to facilitate starter mounting (as the engine was pulled from the world of medium duty where they had a nice flywheel housing that included holes for starters). I know these adapters/spacers were used all the way back to 87 as my old 6.9l had one as well (it came with a ZF5-42 - which I had mated with my 97 7.3l for a while). As the diesel ZF5 has the all in one bellhousing as well - Why? I'm not sure either, but perhaps JD can use that "space" and design his own spacer/adapter that gets bolted to the back of the 4.5l and then has the ZF5 transmission bolted to it. I think it would be really slick and clean looking - kind of a "factory fit" look.

Cj
 

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Discussion Starter #62
What would be involved in making an adapter like that, or where could I get one made for me for a reasonable price? I would do it myself but I don't have access to a mill and I wouldn't know how to design it.

Would that be still cheaper and less work than just using a ZF6 and doing a body lift? Or would it make more sense to use the ZF5? I imagine I'm going to have to find a reman one or rebuild a used one no matter what I do. I'm planning on spending $2000 for the transmission and then $1000 for whatever else I need to fit it.

Also, what about a NV5600 transmission? Are they any better than the NV4500?

Or does it make sense to just use the 5r110 instead? I would rather use a manual but if it's way easier to just use the automatic I guess I could do that.

In the future I'm also planning on getting a Gearvendors tailhousing or some sort of splitter for whatever transmission I get to get even better gas mileage. That will probably be farther down the road though since they cost $3000.
 

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JD,

Hard to say on the adapter.. cheaper? Probably not.. I'm fortunate that I have the ability to design and machine my own parts. The ZF6 is a big transmission. I'm thinking that at least for simplicity sake the ZF6 with a body lift will be the easier route, but there are always surprises. When I stuffed a RTO6610 under my truck I ended up reshaping the transmission tunnel to avoid the body lift (when I initially looked at the swap I thought I could get it in without and mods to the tunnel - yea right!). My understanding of the NV5600 is that it is even heavier and still has the same/similar weakness that the NV4500 has. From my own swap (granted I had to buy all the clutch stuff) I got the transmission for $2000 and spent another $2000 putting it in. And that doesn't include all the time and effort I had in remarrying the transfer case to the transmission (in case you would like to learn more Eaton-Fuller RTO-6610 stuffed behind a 7.3 diesel in a 1997 F350).

Cj
 

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One of the main issues is the 4.5/6.0 have a different style block than the 6.9/7.3. That little piece for mounting a starter bears no resemblance to the adapter plate used on those later engines which is shown in post #23. If you're going to use a manual transmission it needs to be something that can readily use an existing adapter plate. I'm sure a custom adapter plate could be made for the ZF5 but no idea how involved that might get. The NV5600 you mention is probably better than the NV4500 as far as gears go. Possibly could used an SAE adapter plate to mount it but won't state that for sure. That transmission tends to be quite expensive and had some bad reputations over the years. I wouldn't rate it as superior to a ZF6 and cost and size wise they are similar. Current Cummins engines in the Dodge use the Mercedes G56. As for as the Gearvendors units go, you really don't need one if you have a transmission with OD unless you're running extremely low gears in the differential. You don't want to pull a diesels RPM level too low. Look at the power curve of the engine and try to stay near the point of peak torque. Just need to talk to an IH mechanic and see if he has any ideas. You have 2 options that are direct bolt on, the 5R110 and ZF S6-750. Those 2 are for sure. With current SAE adapters the NV4500 can be done and probably the cheapest transmission of the group. If the folks at Phoenix Casting have an adapter to fit one of the ZF5's to an SAE that would give you that option. There were actually 4 different bolt patterns on the ZF5 is you count the modular used on the later V8's. Just going to take a bit of detective work to find all the options.
 

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Discussion Starter #65
I will be keeping my 3.73 gears that I currently have. As for the transmission, I guess I'm down to the ZF6 or the NV4500. The NV4500 would be much cheaper but how does it work with two stacked adapter plates?

The ZF6 would be more expensive because I would have to do a body lift and then get all the parts for it. I don't think I will be able to find a donor truck with one in it (Maybe....) but it is probably my best option.

Also, would a 6.4 donor truck with a manual work? Or are the bellhousings different? I found one manual 6.4 but it is out of my price range.
 

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I did a little leg work and it seems the VT275 was never available with a SAE flywheel housing. The 6.0L (VT365) was, but it appears it was SAE #2. International part # 1843383c1. This should fit the VT275 but doesn't help much unfortunately.

Stacked adapters isn't exactly correct. You take the dodge bellhousing off the NV4500 and put a SAE bellhousing on it, and you take the ZF6 flywheel housing off the VT275 and put the SAE one on that. If they were both SAE 3 that is. Your not going to fit a SAE 2 f/w housing under this truck very easily.
 

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If you install the SAE2 adapter onto the 4.5 engine and the matching flywheel, the NV4500 can be directly bolted to that setup using the aftermarket bellhousing. The SAE2 NV4500 bellhousing has been designed to use for the Cummins R2.8 engine which comes with SAE2. That setup would be a bolt on operation. No extra parts to adapt a non SAE transmission to an SAE like Phoenix Casting. Just a matter of getting the right parts. Whatever clutch is used on the R2.8 application should work on the 4.5. SAE is a standard. Might have to be sure you have the correct size pilot bearing in the flywheel but that's not a biggie. Here's what that bellhousing looks like. Even " Made in USA". $345 + $22.05 shipping.
 

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If/when I do a similar swap it will be a vt275-4r100 combo. I will convert the 275 to a mechanical engine running a VE pump, this will get rid of the modern junk and make it so i can rebuild the pump and injectors on the bench at home. The 4r100 from a 6.8 will bolt right up. PCS controller and done.

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Just curios, how the heck are you going to convert a VT275 to a VE injection pump? The injectors on the VT275 are electronic. Do you have some kind of adapter to fit a mechanical injector? Also, the 6.8
V10 transmission does not have the same program as a diesel. Sounds like a lot of work to be done.
 

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Charr, it's actually pretty straight forward. I've done my homework and have a mechanical 6.0 in the works, should be running late this spring. I gut the engine valley. Started with a base plate in the valley, built a gear housing, and an idler gear to go between the cam gear and pump gear. Injectors are 8.3 Cummins injectors with 24v tips. Simple bushing on the 8.3 injector and the factory 6.0 injectors hold down works fine. Injector lines enter the head through the original injector electric port.

It's helps to have a basic machine shop at your disposal.

6.0 guys have regularly swapped out the 5r for the v10 4r. They have to swap a few internals as well for strength. But a fairly stock 4.5 might handle the 4r just fine.

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Is there a way to bulletproof the NV4500 and fix the issues with it?
The two main vulnerabilities of NV4500 are the 5th gear retention and input shaft bearing.

5th comes loose on these because of the factory design. There are numerous fixes which are really just Band-Aids. The only lifetime fix, I know of, is to replace the main shaft with an aftermarket unit which has a full length interference spline retaining 5th gear. Kit costs $320 & it requires a full teardown of trans to install.

The other vulnerability is caused by wear in the flywheel pilot bushing. You replace the bushing with a ball bearing but to do that the flywheel has to be machined to accept a bearing.

I don't believe there is a solution for the 3-4 split so you'll just have to rev it up when shifting. Aside from that stay away from the early models that have the round shifter input cast top cover. You want the square top cover.

Brass synchros in these transmissions suck, they are ½ price but the engagement is crunchy and feels like an old GM Muncie. Kevlar synchros are the way to go.
 

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Discussion Starter #72
I guess I'm going for the ZF6 then. It's going to be probably the same price as building the NV4500 up but I think it will be better in the long run.

What will I need for the ZF6 transmission to function? And would a 3in body lift be enough to help with clearance? And what transfer case will I need? I know I will have to probably get new driveshafts that are the right length.
 

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The ZF S6-750 used behind the 6.0 has a 34 spline output and was matched to a NP271 manual transfer case or a NP273 with electric shift. About the only options there unless there are adapters to mate it to your existing transfer case. It's possible Advance Adapters has one. That transmission requires an oil cooler so keep that in mind. Then you need the manual transmission adapter plate, flywheel, and clutch assembly from a 6.0 to use on the 4.5. You'll need the manual clutch/brake pedal assembly and a clutch slave cylinder setup. As far as how much body lift would be required I don't know. A possible option would be rebuild the transmission tunnel to accommodate the larger transmission. That is often done in swaps so you don't have to change other parts. Then there will be driveshafts and U joints to work out. Have to check your pinion angles because that transmission and transfer case combo are a good bit longer. Here's a photo of that combo sitting on a pallet to give some idea just how big it is.
 

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Discussion Starter #74
Can I reuse my trans cooler for my 4r75e? Also, would there be any drive shafts that might work or would I have to take them to a machine shop? I am going to go for the NP273 then so I can keep the electric shift since that is what I have. Also, from the swap threads I have looked at another problem is the Vehicle speed sensor. Is that part of the transmission or how is it done on F150s?
 

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Discussion Starter #76
Just found one for $2500 with all the pedals, the doghouse, transfer case, and other parts I will need with 123k on it. I am going to go for a southbend clutch assembly since those are apparently pretty good.

My list of parts so far:

These are the engines I'm looking at:
Engine 1 (VT275)
Engine 2 (4.5 Powerstroke)

I don't know what these come with wiring-wise so I may need a ECU/FICM/Wiring harness.

This is the transmission I'm looking at
This is the clutch I'm looking at

Would a ARP stud kit for a 6.0 probably work for the VT275? Also, what is involved in doing a head stud install?

Also, what will I need to do for engine mounts? Would 6.0 mounts probably work, or will I have to do some fabricobbling?

I am also going to do the oil cooler bulletproof and EGR cooler bulletproof as well, and replace all the gaskets and seals.
 

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Looks like the transmission link also includes the clutch.. If you are serious about the zf6 you might just get that one and see it the clutch is still good.

Cj
 

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Your going to keep the EGR? You ever seen the intakes on those powerstrokes after 100k?

I'm pretty sure the 6.0 engine mounts will mount to the engine, but doubt they will mount to the frame. That's going to need a custom bracket.

And any stud kit for a 6.0 should work in the 4.5 as all the studs are the same length, iirc; I could double check that though. Might want to call around and see if somebody will tailor a stud kit for your needs to save a few pennies.

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Discussion Starter #79 (Edited)
I am going to "keep" the egr and do a delete through the computer or through a tuner (epa will probably show up at my door now 😀) Or maybe I will do a full delete later on. I know these kill the engine and are what cause all the issues.

Now that I'm on the topic of emissions, what did the 6.0/4.5 have after the turbos? Did they have just cats or did they also have DPFs? I might straight pipe it with just a muffler (For that awesome compound turbo spool) because all I have to pass is OBDII emissions AFAIK.

Would a 3 or 3.5 in exhaust be enough for this engine? I would like to reuse the 2.5 stuff I have right now but I doubt that would be big enough. I have a Dynomax single to dual exhaust cat back.
 
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