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Discussion Starter #21 (Edited)
So, While i was out looking for parts, i hit up one of the (many) guys i sold parts to. He bought my transmission in hopes of fixing his basket case w210. He was interested in selling so, i went to check the car out. It was rough. A bad paint correction (clearcoat was burned on every panel from a buffing wheel), countless electrical issues (lol, it’s a 210, what do you expect?), and a terrible interior smell.

All that said, it’s only got 135k on the clock (anyone who knows 606.962 cars knows, they’re very hard to find with under 200k) and the price was right. I already had the parts i needed to fix my engine but, if i couldn’t clean this car up as a driver, it was still a killer price for the engine alone. So i bought.



This brings us up to today. I’m pretty bummed about this but, those electrical issues (and awful interior smells) turned out to be a much bigger problem. This car sat in a barn for a few years and some mice decided to sneak in through a torn steering boot and make home in the dash. Chewed wires, indescribable amounts of poo, gag-a-maget smells, i just don’t think it’s worth saving. It’s a real shame. This car had a lot of potential as a great Daily Driver (i’m getting bored of the jetta)


For now, it’ll be parked in the side yard until i can finish the truck. Then, I’ll pluck that healthy 606 turbo out, clean it, and wrap it up for a rainy day. I had some reservations about high boost @ low RPMs on my motor. No more. If i pop my curent engine, in goes the replacement.




Buttery smooth:
https://photos.app.goo.gl/4ADrWui2usZevM1P8
 

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Ouch !!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #24
Okay, Head work:

I saw that the cams were due in so, i reprioritized life and burned a sick day.

First up was moving the coolant temp switch. The 606 is known for heat in the rear 2 cylinders so, i need wanted to get a more accurate reading. Re-tapped this hole to a ⅜ x 16 npt and installed a new sensor.



Cleaned up the cam housing, replaced 2 lifters, replaced a broken cam retainer.


Head cleaned and new, stiffer, CDI exhaust valve springs installed. They’re noticeably stiffer and should help keep valves from floating when i crank up the boost.


New headgasket, new head bolts, installed and torqued. I used a 3m roloc Bristle Disk to clean off all the old gasket material.


Cams!


Crank/cam timing set:



Pump timing set @ 15*



I installed these 3 bolts this time. Hopefully that’ll work out a little better for my engine internals.
 

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Discussion Starter #25
A big task that i needed to get crossed off my list: crimping and fitting charge pipes.






I also plumbed up the 3” turbo intake/filter. I still need to fab up a bracket to secure the filter housing and a heat shield but, this’ll keep any foreign objects out for the time being.


Huzzah!


She lives again!
https://photos.app.goo.gl/QGXA92vBozFSjpC5A

It’s still running like crap. I’m 99% sure it’s fueling issues. It took forever to get fuel to the first 3 cylinders. When i crack the fuel lines on those first 3 cylinders, i dont get nearly as much fuel squirting out as i do the rear three. I can’t get the air purged out of the #3 cyl injector line. Also, after idling in the driveway for about 10 minutes, it sprung a pretty bad diesel leak, who knows where from.

The solution? I’m going to swap the entire fueling system (lift pump, plastic lines, fuel filter housing, Injection Pump, etc. from the new engine.
 

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Amazing work. Your effort to post progress is appreciated, it’s been valuable to me since I’m also doing a Silverado. And terrible incident with the cams, I have my share of similar mistakes having to re-open my engine, I’m on third head gasket just to give you an idea. I’ve swapped pumps countless times and normally don’t struggle pushing air out. The most I ever struggled (4 day struggle) was replacing and priming the pump on my E300. The biggest problem I think was due to the shut off valve (SOV), complicates priming really bad. I just put an EDC pump in my truck about three days ago and I got rid of the SOV, not sure if you kept it. Maybe the fuel leak is related to the air in those injector lines. My EDC rocks, tons and tons better than the 603 pump. Can’t wait to see how your turbo works with the DSL1. I have the om648 GT23V which I’m pretty happy with. I still have to tune the fuel and boost (in DSL1), so the turbo should get even better. My truck is already performing pretty similar or close to the E300, and I still have plenty of tunning to do (waiting for a MAP sensor to replace my bad one), the dsl1 now is working with default values. Please keep posting updates.
 

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Discussion Starter #27
Amazing work. Your effort to post progress is appreciated, it’s been valuable to me since I’m also doing a Silverado. And terrible incident with the cams, I have my share of similar mistakes having to re-open my engine, I’m on third head gasket just to give you an idea. I’ve swapped pumps countless times and normally don’t struggle pushing air out. The most I ever struggled (4 day struggle) was replacing and priming the pump on my E300. The biggest problem I think was due to the shut off valve (SOV), complicates priming really bad. I just put an EDC pump in my truck about three days ago and I got rid of the SOV, not sure if you kept it. Maybe the fuel leak is related to the air in those injector lines. My EDC rocks, tons and tons better than the 603 pump. Can’t wait to see how your turbo works with the DSL1. I have the om648 GT23V which I’m pretty happy with. I still have to tune the fuel and boost (in DSL1), so the turbo should get even better. My truck is already performing pretty similar or close to the E300, and I still have plenty of tunning to do (waiting for a MAP sensor to replace my bad one), the dsl1 now is working with default values. Please keep posting updates.
nice! Yeah, I'm keeping the sov but, it's electronic on the EDC. Glad to hear your side-by-side comparison of the manual/EDC pump. If you've already got an EDC, the DSL1 makes sense!

I'm curious to see how your gt23v works out! not enough people go for variable vane turbos on these 606 engines. Hopefully the DSL1 makes it easier to open those possibilities. the 606 would really benefit from a 350-400hp turbo that is making boost by 2000 rpm. Keep us posted!
 

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Discussion Starter #28 (Edited)
Pretty big update here…

Those fueling issues I was so sure about? Not fueling issues. I swapped over the entire fueling system and still had no fire on cyl #1. A compression test revealed ~320psi at 5k elevation (pretty impressive) on all cylinders but #1… which read 0. I put cyl#1 at TDC on the compression stroke and blew compressed air into the glow plug hole. I could feel/hear air blowing straight out of the exhaust… Valve problems.



I got lucky here: after pulling the cams out (once again) I found a stuck lifter on the exhaust side. Sure enough, it wasn’t allowing a valve to seat. The funny thing here is… Cylinder 1 has never fired... before or after the “incident” where I snapped a cam. When I pulled the glow plugs to comp test, the GP from cylinder #1 was squeaky clean. Weird.



fixed. and full compression back on cylinder #1. Took it for a spin and all is well.




Since then, I’ve got chassis wiring to 99%. I’m missing a ground somewhere and have no headlights. I need to finish up some 4x4 wiring as well; my “new” transfer case differs slightly as it came from a manual vehicle. I couldn’t get my coolant temp gauge to work… turns out the truck uses two different coolant temp sensors: one for the gauge, one for the ECU, I chose the wrong one. Alternator signal wire is run and the system is charging at 14.5v, good stuff.

I’ve got quite a few leaks that I’ve been trying to track down:
1. I replaced the transfer case output shaft seal, that was leaking pretty bad.
2. Leaky delivery valves on the “new” pump, I ended up swapping back the original pump as I replaced a bunch of seals on it a few months back.
3. The hydroboost unit that I picked up from the junkyard has a pretty bad leak. I’ve currently got it pulled apart to rebuild. Side note on the hydroboost: I love it. It’s much better, all around, than the old vacuum system



My overall thoughts on the swap at this point: I love it. It’s awesome. The HE221w makes 25psi @ ~2000rpm and sounds amazing doing it. Boost/power starts to fall off at 4k RPM but, such is small turbo life. If I want to make power @ 5,500, I’ll compound with an HX super 40 and a 7.5mm EDC pump. This early spool should eventually translate to some great low end torque. Currently, I’ve got Baldur’s “stock turbo” map running everything and I can probably equate it to stock 5.7 TBI HP (~200) and a little extra torque. While no rocket ship, I’ve got a lot more fuel to add into the tune once I get through some shakedown miles.

The 5 speed was absolutely worth the pain and anguish. I love shifting gears and there’s something about a turbocharged engine that makes it that much better. I was pretty fortunate with this NV4500, the PO said it had 115k miles on the clock and I have no reason to believe otherwise. Although it’s no dainty gearbox (it needs a strong left leg and right arm to shift gears) there are no grinds, pops, etc. It appears to be in perfect running shape. Bendstens clutch setup seems to be holding this power level just fine. We’ll see what happens once power is turned up.

The 606: who knew a diesel could be so smooth. Power delivery is great, it’s reasonably quiet when not idling and it even makes decent power outside of boost. It has no trouble holding ~50mph on flat ground (even a slight incline), in 5th gear (~1300rpm). That’s saying a lot for a little IDI 3.0L pushing around a 6 thousand pound brick at elevation. Oh, and it sounds SO GOOD.

I think this is a great “in between” engine for the LS and 4bt powerplants. It’s a great compromise between TQ, HP, Streetability, and fuel milage. And THAT SOUND.

I’ve still got a long hitlist before the swap is “finished”; I’ll keep this thread updated. For now though, I’m trying to finish up gauge wiring, get all the body panels back on, seal up all the leaks, and enjoy it before i dig into paint/body work.

Here’s a little 2-3 gear pull:

https://photos.app.goo.gl/uoDk1jnT8q7qZwSy6
 

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Love everything about this swap. Do you have an EGT or EMP gauge hooked up yet? wondering what kind of numbers your seeing at WOT and long grade cruise. Im kinda planning the same swap in a similar weight class. ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #30
Thanks! I have an egt probe drilled/fastened to the manifold, i just don't have the gauge installed yet. At the moment, I'd imagine EGTs are well within the acceptable range. I'm not getting any smoke, anywhere throughout the rev range. With my current tune, the he221w delivers plenty of air. We'll see what happens once i crank it up but, i imagine the 6mm pump maxed out will have some long injection duration, resulting in high EGTs.

I don't have an EMP gauge yet. Do you have any recommendations for something quick/dirty? I don't need anything permanent, just something to see how the 606/he22w1 work at high boost/RPM. I'll figure out what the "safe zone" is and not push it past that.

The 88-94 gmt400 interior doesn't leave a whole lot of room for gauges. My plan is to hack up the ash tray/ cigarette lighter as a (2) 52mm gauge pod. Boost and EGT. This will allow me to "flip" the gauges out of sight when i'm not towing, romping around, or boosting up a mountain road. I hate pillar gauges. When the ash tray is flipped up, everything will look stock and the factory gauges (speedo, tach, oil press, coolant temp, battery, fuel) will all function like OEM.

 

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Im running one of those glowshift 3 to 1 combo gauges in my TDi swap and amazingly still working great after 40k miles. For EMP you can temporarily yank the EGT out (assuming its a 1/8 NPT) and go grab one of those quick and cheap brake line replacements thats 1 ft long at NAPA that has flared ends and 1/8 NTP fittings already on it. Thread it into your manifold bend it into a usable shape thats out of the way and slide a hose on the end and hook it to a mechanical boost gauge. Its simple and temporary and can be removed quickly. Some guys run them all the time but I see no need to after you get a baseline or for troubleshooting. The DSL1 is a no brainier for the 606 and you get some 7.5 plungers in there and you will be able to make all the torque you will need.
 

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Discussion Starter #32 (Edited)
Hey guys. A short update here.

The swap probably has about 200 miles on it. I managed to blow a u-joint up the first day driving the truck to work. I had to cruise in third gear & ~25mph all the way home. These era GM trucks are a nightmare to find certain parts for. Mine is no exception. after 4 trips to the local NAPA, i finally found the right u-joint. The next thing to explode will probably be by poor 10-bolt. oh well.

I've been chasing a nasty cold start issue (fogging out the whole street with white/unburned diesel). The truck would start just fine but, as soon as the afterglow shut off, idle quality was terrible. Tons of white smoke & misfires while trying to leave the neighborhood.

- i installed a set of cleaned/pop tested injectors.
- advanced timing ~3*
- increased afterglow to numbers closer to closer to factory numbers (up to 180 seconds when very cold).

This definitely cleaned up my cold starts. I can leave the neighborhood without embarrassing myself. It's still very clacky and has an occasional misfire at idle though, i'll keep digging into it... It's a huge improvement from where i was though. It picked up some power as well, with the advanced timing. This thing moves really well for it's weight and engine size.

Baldur released a fix to change how he calculates RPM. this fixed my RPM spike issue. I now get the full 5000rpm redline out of this thing. Although the little he221w is just blowing hot air at that point, it sounds awesome.

After installing the EGT gauge, I went for a quick canyon run. Coolant temp never went over 79c (174f). EGT's however will be an issue. Granted, I'm overfueling at higher rpm, EGTs can quickly skyrocket past +1400*f. Water meth may help but, if i ever expect to tow with this thing, significantly decreased fuel or a 7.5mm pump (shorter injection duration) may be in order.


 

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Good work. 1400F is starting to cook things on a IDI. Pull some fuel to confirm thats the issue. If it is then you just need more air.
 

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Discussion Starter #34
I cut fuel a bit but, EGR still climbs pretty quickly. I'm still getting excessive clacking, smoke after the GP's shutoff, and occasional misfire while warm.


Will advanced or retarded timing result in excessive egts? It's also my understanding that these pumps will increase injection duration when "maxed out", which could also increase EGT.
 

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No expert here, but I'm of the impression that retarded timing will result in higher EGTs as there would not be sufficient time to burn the added fuel. You should probably try advancing a bit more, cautiously. I've looked at my EGTs playing with the timing and they do seem to lower with more advanced timing. So the more fuel you add, the better if timing's advanced a bit to allow for added time needed to inject and conbustion. This is where 7.5mm elements should help...from what I've heard. The clacking and smoke, is the pump calibrated?
 

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I havent played with a DSL1 yet but can you see when SOI is when at WOT? Does it show commanded and actual? And agreed retarded timing will heat up EGTs.
 

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Discussion Starter #38
hey guys, It's been a while...

To answer a few questions...
1. The pump is not calibrated. It's got about 280k miles on the clock now and could maybe use a rebuild.
2. You can't see any type of injection timing data with the DSL1. No fault of the dsl1... the Mercedes EDC pump is basically an old-school bosch inline (think P-Pump) pump with a solenoid-controlled fuel rack. It's really basic.
3. For motor mount consideration, I checked to make sure the engine was tilted properly (for driveshaft/pinion angle) and i measured center-of-crankshaft to the outside of the frame rails. I was later informed that this was "wrong" as the original small block doesnt sit centered in the frame rails. Lol, thanks GM. So, my driveshaft potentially doesnt run parallel with the frame? Oh well, we'll see that happens. that, or, the driveshaft didn't run paralled w/ the frame from the factory... and now it does. Who knows.


Updates: I've advanced timing quite a bit and significantly lengthened after glow timing. This drastically halped my blue smoke & misfire scenario. The engine still clacks and misfires occasionally (before reaching operating temp) but, is much better than before. Timing advance drastically helped EGT as well. I'm "only" reaching ~1300f on extended WOT pulls now. Not perfect, still better than soaring past 1500.

I unplugged the wastegate as well. Boost by fuel, yo. This is where the DSL1 shines. I can cut fuel as the turbo starts to fall off (~3700rpm) so that I'm not dumping fuel and cooking pistons at high RPM. I'm seeing a Max of 32psi and this 6mm pump is maxed out. This is all this setup's got.

That said, a buddy of mine with a '98 k1500 (250hp) and I lined up a few weeks back for some friendly pulls. From a 10-60ish roll (where his 2nd gear ends) I had over a truck length on him. I figured I'd be quicker but, not by that much. not bad for a little german 3.0L

Fuel milage... oh yes. My first actual test included a 200 mile drive down to CO springs and back. Most of which was done +80mph. that tank (~300mi total) returned 24mpg. the next tank, which was commuting to work (75% hwy, 25% city) returned 25.4mpg. Since advancing my timing, It appears to be using even less fuel. On a hypermiling, 60mph, etc. road trip... I'd be knocking on the door of 30. I'm blown away by this. I expected low, low 20's from the 606. They're known for their performance, not their fuel economy.

For anyone who's interested, I've attached my pricing spreadsheet. it wasn't cheap. Not including the price of the truck, I've got a little over $6k into it. I've done my best to keep track of every nut, bolt, fluid, maintenance items, etc purchased though and i didn't spare any expense on this build. Not including maintenance items (rusty fenders, worn seals, broken camshafts, etc) the cost-to-swap was ~$4.700. Would an LS swap been cheaper? Sure but, see my thoughts above on LS swaps above.

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1dK71RflS382unY4R5BKKwHq3RleZCQJXk-B9-mhd65A/edit?usp=sharing

I have a new-to-me e55 AMG (470hp) that's been collecting dust in the driverway for the past week. The truck is too much fun to not drive.

side exit exhaust they said, it'll be fun they said.



Here's me, 25 years ago, with my truck. I was pretty stoked when my dad sent this pic over.
 

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Very cool. Cost spread shoot looks about like mine if I dont include the cost of the truck. Good to see the 606 doing well in the MPG as they have o problem making power. I think some 7.5mm plungers and compounds are in your future. I picked up a 648 car earlyer this year and looking for the right square body to put it in.
 

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I've had an om617 in Colorado for about 20 years. Maybe this information will help you.

Because of the altitude (Loveland is roughly around 5280 ft, that is why we are the mile high state), Mercedes diesels like more timing at higher altitude. You should have added at least 2 degrees to the stock setting, although I would go even higher if the engine likes it. More timing will also decrease EGTs, this is true for both gas and diesel motors.

You should also run more boost, I have run double the stock pressure for a long time. As long as the head gasket and the head stud/bolt can take it, you can run a lot more boost without affecting how the engine runs. The reason that you would want to do that is because your EGT reading should drop. And yes, you should control the engine with the fuel rather than the boost. Excess boost will just decrease EGT, it won't result in more power until more fuel is added to the mix. This will also clean up emissions, which can be handy. i don't know about gas converted vehicles in Colorado, but anything that originally had a diesel in it is required to be strapped to a dyno and have opacity measured, every year for emissions so you can have it registered. There isn't any gasoline cars that have to do emissions anymore in Colorado, but they still require it for diesels.

If your motor has an ALDA, make sure it is working.

If your motor has an EGR this should also drop the EGT readings, especially under heavy loads.

If your motor has trouble starting, increase the amount of time the glow plugs operate (within limits, you can burn them out). If you have any loss of compression in your motor from stock, it will make it hard to start in the winter. Mercedes stock glow plug timing have also always been inadequate, this makes them hard to start too. It also helps if your relay is hooked directly to the battery through the shortest length of cable, and it has a large diameter power cable supplying it. On older Mercedes motors the power isn't always hooked direct to the relay because they run the big power wire to the ignition switch and then to the relay - which is pretty stupid, since you already have a relay to take the heavy current. Sometimes you have to put in ANOTHER relay so that the main power doesn't go directly through the ignition switch. Then the ignition switch just controls the added relay instead of handling a lot of power. It won't matter in your case, because you have a GM ignition switch.

To improve the starting ability of my OM617, I had a custom gear reduction starter motor made up for it (Mean Green Starters). I also changed the stock relay configuration, added the later glow plugs, increased the diameter of the power cable running to the relay, and used an aftermarket battery (Predator).

Older Mercedes diesels have always been cold blooded. If you can get them running, you need to put them under a load so that some heat builds in the motor. Block heaters are a necessity in cold climates, and some people even have to run two of them. Block heaters can raise your electric bill noticeably, so you might want to use a timer in conjunction with the block heater. Fuel is also important in cold weather. Petroleum companies have always changed the cetane rating somewhat during cold weather, but it usually isn't enough. It's pretty common for those that run diesels in the winter to add a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline to every tank of diesel used, and Mercedes mechanics tell their customers to do this also. This helps with starting and helps to build heat into the motor. If your motor is having trouble continuing to run when cold, you might still have some diesel in it that is a summer blend rather than a winter blend.

There is one place that specializes in modified OM606 injection pumps, but it is in Switzerland (Dieselmeken). You might be able to get some barrels and delivery valves from them, then have one of the Cummins pump rebuilders/modifiers from the US install them in your pump. Both the Cummins P7100 pump and the OM606 pumps are inline Bosch Injection pumps, so it shouldn't be hard for them.

If you are having trouble finding unique original Mercedes parts, you can usually get them through Salim's in Colo. Springs. Phone number (719) 475-7070.
 
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