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Discussion Starter #1
I did some searching, but did not turn up much of anything specific to my question.

In Texas, the only thing that is checked (to my knowledge) on a diesel truck are the brakes, steering, horn and lights. No emissions requirements for TX Diesel trucks that I've seen. Sure, that's likely to change in the next few years... so here's my question-

Can I drop a 4BT or a Detroit into a 2007 truck in Texas? If not, what's the newest truck I can do this and be safe if Texas' policy changes in the future? I've read BobS' suggestion to use a 1970 or older just to be safe, but I want to know for sure if anyone knows the answer for TX. I mean, do I need to stay with 2003 and older, or 1993 and older, or what?

I'd love to build something with a Detroit on an older frame, but I'd love to convert a newer truck with a 4BT or similar.
 

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Technically speaking, you need an 07 or newer EPA rated engine to legally do the swap in the US.

That said, it sounds like you could get away with it because TX isn't enforcing the EPA's federal laws at the moment.

If they start enforcing the laws, my understanding (which may not be correct) is that they will be requiring emissions on the newest model year (when they start enforcing) and newer model vehicles. That would make your swap ok since they aren't currently enforcing it for 07. Just what my understanding is, i could be completely off on that part.
 

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they slapped us with emissions inspections a year or so ago. they check them all the way back to 1975, gas or diesel. you may not have any problems, but if they decide to bring them in you wont be able to get it legalized unless its an 07 or newer engine legally. doesn't mean you can't find a loophole to slide it thru.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
true, as far as loopholes go... there may be something.

in TX, gas engine vehicles are only subject to emission testing if A) you're in an emissions-controlled county, and B) if your vehicle is newer than 25 yrs old. I.E. this year if you have 1982, it won't be emission checked.

Sounds like I should just stick with my original plans and use an older vehicle for my upcoming (year away) project. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
As Diesel Durango points out above, one technically needs an engine that meets or exceeds the EPA rating for the year of manufacture for the chassis/body. If that is the case, assuming the 4BT carries a (?)1993 EPA rating, I'd technically have to have a vehicle 1993 or older, correct?

Does the EPA rating really have anything to do with the year of manufacture for hte engine? I.E. was a Detroit 3-53 "EPA OK" until 1993 or some such?

Maybe my years are wrong- maybe I have a fundamental misunderstanding of the issue. I don't know. I just don't want to go build a truck or jeep and find that it's 50-state road illegal :)
 

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I think most places with the diesel (or GVW) exceptions go by the VIN # to verify the engine. If you were to start with a diesel vehicle, such as a GM, and swap in a Cummins, you would have a much better chance. But removing a gas V-8 and bolting in a Cummins is much more difficult, at least here in N.H. Our state has 2 exceptions to the emissions check- diesel engines, and high GVW. Both are checked by the VIN # being entered into the computer. You can tell the town clerk and state anything you want and have it on the registration paperwork, but it doesn't matter once the VIN is entered during the inspection.

Its really too bad, I wish I could just register for a higher GVW (I think the cutoff is around 7k lbs. here) and get away with my Cummins, or better yet just have them register it as a diesel, but it won't fly. So I'm left to play a shady game come inspection time.

Jim
 

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Under the EPA's code of federal regulations, your approved EPA chassis and engine combination can only be legally used with the original manufacturers specifications and options. The exception is California which has the capability to approve other engine and chassis combinations through it's own certification testing program. This really means that you can only install a 4BT or any other engine, gasoline or diesel, into a chassis that originally was manufactured and EPA approved using that engine and chassis combination. These same regulations cover the disabling and removal of approved emissions equipment. The federal government does not have an army of full time enforcement officers to monitor this area but instead has passed this responsibility directly onto the individual states and in return passes along things such as federal highway funding for doing the enforcement. It is this area where your states interpretation has a direct effect on what is or is not permitted. So technically the bottom line according to the EPA is you must be driving a vehicle as the manufacturer had originally constructed and was approved by the EPA in the year that it was manufactured, unless your particular state offers EPA approved recertifications. Also, keep in mind one of the first engine emissions devices was the PCV valve sometime around 1963.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I think '68 is when the PCV hit us.

I see your points, guys, and I feel your pain, for those of you who went ahead and made a swap with something new. I'd love to do something in a newer truck, especially since older trucks are becoming unbearably overpriced for their condition. Seems everyone wishes their rustbucket was the next thing to roll up to the block at the Barrett auctions. :happyfinger:

Ok, I'll just stick with my original plan, which was a 1967/68 truck anyhow... Got a year to pull my pieces together before I can get started on the project anyhow.
 

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http://4btswaps.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1668&highlight=emissions

from that thread:

""certified configuration" is an engine or engine chassis design which has been "certified" (approved)by EPA prior to the production of vehicles with that design"

sounds to me that as long as the engine was certified for a similar type vehicle in that year or newer year, it should be ok. Of course the 4bt is a medium duty engine, so unless your GVW is medium duty, it is probably still not technically legal. Someone on here also stated that while they may be reconed in different years they are only epa certified to 1993, i don't know how accurate this is.
 

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http://4btswaps.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1668&highlight=emissions

from that thread:

""certified configuration" is an engine or engine chassis design which has been "certified" (approved)by EPA prior to the production of vehicles with that design"

sounds to me that as long as the engine was certified for a similar type vehicle in that year or newer year, it should be ok. Of course the 4bt is a medium duty engine, so unless your GVW is medium duty, it is probably still not technically legal. Someone on here also stated that while they may be reconed in different years they are only epa certified to 1993, i don't know how accurate this is.

Yep.. It's a question of: What years are a given CPL certified by the EPA for "Light Heavy-Duty" use on-road?

You could have a brand new, just off the factory floor engine, but if it were built to, oh, CPL 857, it'd only be legit for use in vehicles up to around '93 (I believe that in 94-98 it would have to be a CPL using a P7100 pump, and then ISB / commonrail from there..)

And this is how the re-powers were done legitimately from an EPA standpoint in the first place. The vehicles that were receiving the engines were of the appropriate GVWR, and the engines were certified for use in a year equal to or greater than the chassis. So, it's a "certified combination" in the eyes of the EPA.
 

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Yep.. It's a question of: What years are a given CPL certified by the EPA for "Light Heavy-Duty" use on-road?

You could have a brand new, just off the factory floor engine, but if it were built to, oh, CPL 857, it'd only be legit for use in vehicles up to around '93 (I believe that in 94-98 it would have to be a CPL using a P7100 pump, and then ISB / commonrail from there..)

And this is how the re-powers were done legitimately from an EPA standpoint in the first place. The vehicles that were receiving the engines were of the appropriate GVWR, and the engines were certified for use in a year equal to or greater than the chassis. So, it's a "certified combination" in the eyes of the EPA.

That's great information.

What was the GVWR range for the 4bt re-powers? Knowing this information, which of the vehicles common to this forum fall within that GVWR assuming the vehicle years line up with the engine build years? It would be nice to have a list of those vehicles in this thread for reference.
 

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By the letter of the EPA's "Engine switching fact sheet" you can only install a 4BT engine in a manufacturers factory chassis that originally had a 4BT engine as an option or came as standard equipment and was EPA approved for that combination. Like wise you can't install a Duramax engine in an 86 Chevy Monte Carlo because GM never manufactured an EPA approved Duramax powered 86 Monte Carlo.
I can't find the update to the attached EPA factsheet. I think Machman originally found it at the EPA website.
 

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maybe i am not understanding what I posted:

""certified configuration" is an engine or engine chassis design which has been "certified" (approved)by EPA prior to the production of vehicles with that design"

doesn't that say that the engine, or the engine/chassis design has been certified?

then from your document:

"For light-duty vehicles, installation of a light-duty eng~ne into a different light-duty vehicle by any
person would be considered tampering unless the resulting vehicle is identical (with regard to all
emission related parts, engine design parameters, and engine calibrations) to a certified configuration of
the same or newer model year as the vehicle chassis"


that document goes on to state:
"It should be noted that while EPA's policy allows engine switches as long as the resulting vehicle
matches exactly to anv certified configuration of the same or newer model year as the chassis, there are
some substantial practical limitations to performing such a replacement. Vehicle chassis and engine
designs of one vehicle manufacturer are very distinct from those of another, such that it is generally not
possible to put an engine into a chassis of a different manufacturer and have it match up to a certified
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configuration. Therefore, practical considerations will generally limit engine switches to installation of
another engine which was certified to be used in that same make and model (or a "twin" of that make
and model, e.g., Pontiac Grand Am and Oldsmobile Calais). In addition, converting a vehicle into a
different certified configuration is likely to be very difficult, and the cost may prove prohibitive"

making it sound like you could put any engine into any vehicle as long as it is epa certified to a newer model year, but it might not be practical.
 

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The key part of the equation is that the 4BT is considered and certified in the "Heavy-Duty" part of things (Light Heavy-Duty, GVWR > 8500LB, etc.), so the paragraph about Heavy Duty applies:

"For heavy-duty vehicles, the resulting vehicle must contain a heavy-duty engine which is identical to a certified configuration of a heavy-duty engine of the same model year or newer as the year of the installed engine. Under no circumstances, however, may a heavy-duty engine ever be installed in a light-duty vehicle."

So, if you're planning a swap into a "3/4 ton" pickup with a GVWR of 8600LB, and it's a MY earlier than the EPA certification year of the engine, by the EPA's rules you're good. Note that the People's Republic of California threw some shoes in the works by changing the weights in 1995 to > 14000LB for "Light Heavy-Duty" diesel.

Now, if you're planning a swap into something newer.. Got a new problem for you: (From http://www.dieselnet.com/standards/us/hd.html)

Under the federal light-duty Tier 2 regulation (phased-in beginning 2004) vehicles of GVWR up to 10,000 lbs used for personal transportation have been re-classified as “medium-duty passenger vehicles” (MDPV - primarily larger SUVs and passenger vans) and are subject to the light-duty vehicle legislation.

So.. Even the 3/4 and 1 ton trucks (unless you get your GVWR up over 10K) are considered light-duty as of 2004.. Gee.. That's about the time we saw the Duramax, Powerstroke, and Cummins motors gain all the fun stuff, like catalytic converters, EGR, and all that jazz..
 

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Here is the catch all which is what I am referring to:

"a replacement is legal only if the resulting engine-chassis configuration
is equivalent to a certified configuration of the same model year or newer as the chassis"

You can only duplicate an EPA approved factory installed engine & chassis combination and the engine installed in that chassis must therefore meet all the EPA emissions requirements as originally installed. The EPA certification only applies to that engine and chassis combination. That's why you can't mix & match combinations within or between manufacturers even though the engine is EPA emissions approved.
 

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Here is the catch all which is what I am referring to:

"a replacement is legal only if the resulting engine-chassis configuration
is equivalent to a certified configuration of the same model year or newer as the chassis"

You can only duplicate an EPA approved factory installed engine & chassis combination and the engine installed in that chassis must therefore meet all the EPA emissions requirements as originally installed. The EPA certification only applies to that engine and chassis combination. That's why you can't mix & match combinations within or between manufacturers even though the engine is EPA emissions approved.

I still feel that my inerpretation is valid. it is probably just semantics that i don't claim to be a pro at, but:

by definition a certified configuration can be an engine tested to EPA standards OR an engine chassis tested to EPA standards.

so, that certified configuration (say an engine) must be of the MY of the chassis or newer.

My understanding of what an "engine-chassis" is a chassis for an engine, not the combination. so there are two parts the engine-chassis and the engine that go together. I'm not gonna lie, that's just how i'm reading it right now, i think we need a lawyer to interpret since one is probably who wrote it :D

it seems like things are either redudant or over defined which is causing confusion for me.
 

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I contacted the DMV Emissions Inspections & Enforcement Division in Harrisburg last November and had a couple lengthy conversations with the person in charge. He went way out of his way in clarifying that the EPA's definition was the combination of the approved engine & chassis and that is how it was to be enforced. He gave plenty of examples similar to the ones I used. I wish it was the way you are saying but it isn't.
 

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Thank God I live in Arkansas. They don't even require a safety inspection year after year. And if you are caught without a catalytic convertor, they might shake your finger at you.

So if I were to take the chassis of a bread truck, cut it down to the wheelbase of my explorer, then mount the body of the explorer to the chassis of the breadtruck (I would now be certified as a 1 ton vechicle) it would be more legal than taking the engine out of my gas guzzler and replacing it with a teir II certified 3.3B? or even a 3.3QSB?

EPA must be full of lawyers with no common sense. The rules should state "Your vehicle must meet the tailpipe emmisions requirements applicable to that year/make/model regardless of the actual engine under the hood." THAT would help us all out.

So is this forum full of criminals?

Another question: what rules are there for a home built vehicle? Or how hard is it to register as a small time vehicle manufacturer/modifier?
 

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I contacted the DMV Emissions Inspections & Enforcement Division in Harrisburg last November and had a couple lengthy conversations with the person in charge. He went way out of his way in clarifying that the EPA's definition was the combination of the approved engine & chassis and that is how it was to be enforced. He gave plenty of examples similar to the ones I used. I wish it was the way you are saying but it isn't.
sounds pretty settled i guess :beer:

I spoke to someone in NJ who had called their DMV and got the answer that i got. every state is different i guess.
 

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I don't think it's a lack of common sense. I think it's Greed! They get paid for each "Certified" combination!
 
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