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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi guys I'm new here and relatively new to diesel swaps. I have a 1972 dodge power wagon with an 8ft service bed I'm hoping to save and put back to work. It has what I believe is a 360 in it now which it almost done for ad an auto transmission both of which are quite disappointing in performance. I'm an arborist by trade and am trying to go out on my own here in cali specifically in fire prevention so this truck would be pulling an 8000 pound chipper everywhere. I've been offered one of my old employers chip trucks, a 1987 GMC Forward 4000 with a rebuilt 4BD1TH anda 5spd trans with 217k miles for a super low price from him. Cali emissions makeit literally not possible to be on the road unless it has a whole new def system installed. I've towed a full load of chips and a 10k lbs chipper on the freeway at 55 no problem with this rig so I know it's capable to do the job. The power wagon is 4x4 with a dana 44 in he front and I was told the oil pan configuration would be quite the issue. I can't recall the model of the transfer case but I'm sure it will be a nightmare to fitup. My question to you folks is can this swap be done within reason? I've never swapped anything before but am a decent mechanic, what am I really in for here guys? Am I wasting my time or should I chase this?

Thanks so much for your time everyone I look forward to hearing your thoughts!
 

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I think your biggest issue will be what class the power wagon is. A lot of guys who want to do diesel swaps in Cali are restricted to engines from the same class of vehicle that theirs is. So a lot of guys want to swap a Cummins into an FZJ80, but can’t because it’s classed differently. They’re pretty much limited to a 6.2/6.5 GM, which isn’t even worth the hassle. I’d start your search there before you get into the swap.

That being said, my uncle has a 53 Power Wagon with a 4bd2t in it. It’s got Dana 60’s and is capable of cruising at 65, but it’s not comfortable. I would never want to pull anything with it. It just isn’t designed to be used that way. The entire vehicle makes a poor tow vehicle.
 

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Engine swap on a '72 PW will fly under the radar in regard to emissions in CA. The new diesel rules only apply to 14000+ GVWR.

The 4bd will fit where a 360 was. You may have to adjust the sump depending on where you place it relative to the front axle and ride height. People have put these in midsize trucks and passenger cars. A 72 dodge has tons of room relative to those.
 

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Engine swap on a '72 PW will fly under the radar in regard to emissions in CA. The new diesel rules only apply to 14000+ GVWR.

The 4bd will fit where a 360 was. You may have to adjust the sump depending on where you place it relative to the front axle and ride height. People have put these in midsize trucks and passenger cars. A 72 dodge has tons of room relative to those.
When did those rules change? Most guys I’ve conversed with are doing swaps in vehicles below 14,000gvw and they’re having issues with pretty much any engine other than the newer cummins maybe, and the ones I mentioned before that came in pickups in the same weight class. I think the ‘same or lighter weight class, and same year or newer engine than the vehicle it’s going into’ is a rule for all vehicles? I may be mistaken, I’m not in Cali, but most guys who look into a swap seem to drop it once they get into the particulars.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the quick responses folks I appreciate it! So the power wagon is a W200 series- 3/4 ton - to be precise 8200 lbs if I'm not mistaken. I plan on fabricating a dump bed to sit inside and over the top of the boxes possibly adding another 1k lbs or so. But still well under the 14k limit. Being a 72' its presmog and as far as I know every non commercial vehicle pre 75' should be fine in cali? I'm definitely going to listen to you guys about it tho.



To Blsracing, thanks for the comment, as far as the sump adjustment goes would it need a different oil pan or can I work with the one that's on the 4bt? If not can this be done on a budget?


Michael Osoba, thanks as well for the comment! I'm well aware those older rigs were NOT designed with comfort in mind! My neighbor has a 48'ish pw or something in that era and it's like sitting in a tin lunchbox in a paint shaker! My 72 isn't perfect but it is quite a bit more gentle. So as far as towing it's got a receiver on thefron bumper, a pintle hitch on the back and just below that a normal receiver. I've never towed with it but man it sure looks to be built for it? Do you still think it would be worth doing the swap, at least to mod i then sell it?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Hi guys I'm new here and relatively new to diesel swaps. I have a 1972 dodge power wagon with an 8ft service bed I'm hoping to save and put back to work. It has what I believe is a 360 in it now which it almost done for ad an auto transmission both of which are quite disappointing in performance. I'm an arborist by trade and am trying to go out on my own here in cali specifically in fire prevention so this truck would be pulling an 8000 pound chipper everywhere. I've been offered one of my old employers chip trucks, a 1987 GMC Forward 4000 with a rebuilt 4BD1TH anda 5spd trans with 217k miles for a super low price from him. Cali emissions makeit literally not possible to be on the road unless it has a whole new def system installed. I've towed a full load of chips and a 10k lbs chipper on the freeway at 55 no problem with this rig so I know it's capable to do the job. The power wagon is 4x4 with a dana 44 in he front and I was told the oil pan configuration would be quite the issue. I can't recall the model of the transfer case but I'm sure it will be a nightmare to fitup. My question to you folks is can this swap be done within reason? I've never swapped anything before but am a decent mechanic, what am I really in for here guys? Am I wasting my time or should I chase this?

Thanks so much for your time everyone I look forward to hearing your thoughts!
130268
 

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When did those rules change? Most guys I’ve conversed with are doing swaps in vehicles below 14,000gvw and they’re having issues with pretty much any engine other than the newer cummins maybe, and the ones I mentioned before that came in pickups in the same weight class. I think the ‘same or lighter weight class, and same year or newer engine than the vehicle it’s going into’ is a rule for all vehicles? I may be mistaken, I’m not in Cali, but most guys who look into a swap seem to drop it once they get into the particulars.
When I did my '68 F-250 in CA. in 2011 all they required was a on road diesel with a EPA tag stating it was for a "light heavy-duty" application, with that and a visual verification of the VIN # plus $15.00 to print the new title with the fuel change had me on the road...$.02
My truck has done the duty you are asking of yours however once I'm above about 12,000# CGVW the rest of the truck is beyond it's "happy place" and the 4BT with a 200HP tune was really busting ass, if I'm just towing local I would feel comfortable with the loads your considering...But 12K and under it'll run down the interstate like a champ. This was about a month ago on I-17 North of phoenix just past the summit so we had just topped 15 miles of intermittent fairly long 6% grades, my rig maintained 70MPH in OD out of the valley

20210101_154930.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
When I did my '68 F-250 in CA. in 2011 all they required was a on road diesel with a EPA tag stating it was for a "light heavy-duty" application, with that and a visual verification of the VIN # plus $15.00 to print the new title with the fuel change had me on the road...$.02
My truck has done the duty you are asking of yours however once I'm above about 12,000# CGVW the rest of the truck is beyond it's "happy place" and the 4BT with a 200HP tune was really busting ass, if I'm just towing local I would feel comfortable with the loads your considering...But 12K and under it'll run down the interstate like a champ. This was about a month ago on I-17 North of phoenix just past the summit so we had just topped 15 miles of intermittent fairly long 6% grades, my rig maintained 70MPH in OD out of the valley

View attachment 130269
Sweet truck man! Looks awesome! I'd really be treating this one like a tractor and while towing Id probably be going fairly slow. What exactly did you d to your 4bt to gain that extra HP? What sort of milage were you getting while towing that? Did you use the old stock fuel tank or did you need t install a different one?did you have any issues with the front diff in relation to the oil pan?
 

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Thanks I have a 65 gallon tank that I built it goes under the spare tires behind the cab.
I went from a 200HP tune on the tired bread truck engine and when at ~ 350,000 miles when it gave up I built a engine for compounds keeping the VE pump but going with 5 x .012" injectors.
I got 16 MPG on the trip home and I'd guess that we were between 12K and 13K CGVW at the time.
The rear sump pan sits so that the sump just clears the drivers side drop D-44 sitting as low as it could while allowing clearance for the axle tube when bottomed out.
 

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Oh duh. That’s where I was off! Ha ha. I bet you can get away with a 2” lift.

Some of those dodges used a divorced NP205, didn't they? That would be a good setup I bet. I hope it works out for you.
 

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From my experience with a CGVW that you are wanting to haul around you will want a wide ratio trans, I have used both the close and wide ratio ZF's in my truck and the close ratios 1st gear is 4.65-1 vs the 5.72-1 of the wide ratio. Taking off on anything other then level ground with a heavy load requires more clutch wear and tear that I was happy with using the close ratio box, I have a 203 under drive mated to my 205 T-case and I tend to just get it rolling in 1st/under. So for what you want either a granny low 1st or a Brownie box if you have room would be the way to go IMHO the ZF S6-650 would be the way to go that would give you a 5.79-1 1st with 2nd being 3.30-1 and a .72 OD, I'm on trans #3 now and in hindsight trying to save cash really cost me....Just doing it right the first time will always be the most cost effective path ;)

Edit.. One other thing to consider IF you plan on or might end up much beyond the 200HP level the Cummins/Ford adapter/flywheel are limited to a 11" clutch disk and it is not up to the job much beyond that so if that power level is in the works I'd only be looking at the aftermarket adapters so IF this is the case the ZF-6 to ME becomes a viable choice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
From my experience with a CGVW that you are wanting to haul around you will want a wide ratio trans, I have used both the close and wide ratio ZF's in my truck and the close ratios 1st gear is 4.65-1 vs the 5.72-1 of the wide ratio. Taking off on anything other then level ground with a heavy load requires more clutch wear and tear that I was happy with using the close ratio box, I have a 203 under drive mated to my 205 T-case and I tend to just get it rolling in 1st/under. So for what you want either a granny low 1st or a Brownie box if you have room would be the way to go IMHO the ZF S6-650 would be the way to go that would give you a 5.79-1 1st with 2nd being 3.30-1 and a .72 OD, I'm on trans #3 now and in hindsight trying to save cash really cost me....Just doing it right the first time will always be the most cost effective path ;)

Edit.. One other thing to consider IF you plan on or might end up much beyond the 200HP level the Cummins/Ford adapter/flywheel are limited to a 11" clutch disk and it is not up to the job much beyond that so if that power level is in the works I'd only be looking at the aftermarket adapters so IF this is the case the ZF-6 to ME becomes a viable choice.
Oh jeez! I'm not good with transmissions Lol, I was hoping that 5 spd would be a clean swap. I'm really just going for cost effective reliability and buying a whole new transmission or tearing into this one could be tricky. I'm no expert at all but what if I just matched the gearing in the GMC to the rear end on my PW? When I recall driving the GMC it was quite torquey, I'd often just start in second. Definitely not on hills tho! So as far as the rest of the drive line is concerned I was warned to keep extra U joints in the glovebox but that's about it. Should I build a different drive shaft or can't I reuse is and just chop it? I'd imagine going from.an automatic dodge to this 5 speed wouldn't be impossible? The clutch pedal will need to be cut into the cab ad the stamp outs for the stick are simple, is there anything else I need to know about? Will the transfer case even be able to handle the torque? It sounds like of my current transfer case isn't divorced it's gonna be much more difficult so how can I get it to work?

Thanks again man! You guys are really helping me out on this and the GMC got lowered down to $200 so this is looking very doable!!!
 

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When did those rules change? Most guys I’ve conversed with are doing swaps in vehicles below 14,000gvw and they’re having issues with pretty much any engine other than the newer cummins maybe, and the ones I mentioned before that came in pickups in the same weight class. I think the ‘same or lighter weight class, and same year or newer engine than the vehicle it’s going into’ is a rule for all vehicles? I may be mistaken, I’m not in Cali, but most guys who look into a swap seem to drop it once they get into the particulars.
No smog check on pre '75 in CA. Technically still subject to smog controls, but no biannual smog checks prior to '75 unless you piss off a cop and he writes you up, forcing you to visit the smog referee. Possible, but unlikely unless you are doing something really stupid.

Regarding the latest diesel emissions regulations, they apply to medium and heavy duty trucks and busses. They don't apply to light duty trucks used for personal use. https://ww3.arb.ca.gov/msprog/onrdiesel/documents/tbfinalreg.pdf. These un-registerable diesel trucks, that are subject to these rules, are great sources of engines for our projects, FYI.

Bottom line, your '72 Dodge can accept any diesel you can make fit, and no one will ask any questions unless you are using for commercial purposes.

The Isuzu engine is a rear sump, similar to your 360. Shouldn't have much trouble.
 

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Oh jeez! I'm not good with transmissions Lol, I was hoping that 5 spd would be a clean swap. I'm really just going for cost effective reliability and buying a whole new transmission or tearing into this one could be tricky. I'm no expert at all but what if I just matched the gearing in the GMC to the rear end on my PW? When I recall driving the GMC it was quite torquey, I'd often just start in second. Definitely not on hills tho! So as far as the rest of the drive line is concerned I was warned to keep extra U joints in the glovebox but that's about it. Should I build a different drive shaft or can't I reuse is and just chop it? I'd imagine going from.an automatic dodge to this 5 speed wouldn't be impossible? The clutch pedal will need to be cut into the cab ad the stamp outs for the stick are simple, is there anything else I need to know about? Will the transfer case even be able to handle the torque? It sounds like of my current transfer case isn't divorced it's gonna be much more difficult so how can I get it to work?

Thanks again man! You guys are really helping me out on this and the GMC got lowered down to $200 so this is looking very doable!!!
The two most important choices you will make will be the turbo you choose and your gearing, these choices will make or break the overall drivability nail those and the rest is just minor tuning.
Seeing as towing is important you will want to consider the spacing between gears as well as your final drive ratio, this is a good place to work things out it's a good/easy to use format and has served me well...http://www.grimmjeeper.com/gears.html
At this point research is your friend and will pay off tenfold in the end.
 
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When did those rules change? Most guys I’ve conversed with are doing swaps in vehicles below 14,000gvw and they’re having issues with pretty much any engine other than the newer cummins maybe, and the ones I mentioned before that came in pickups in the same weight class. I think the ‘same or lighter weight class, and same year or newer engine than the vehicle it’s going into’ is a rule for all vehicles? I may be mistaken, I’m not in Cali, but most guys who look into a swap seem to drop it once they get into the particulars.
California smog laws only applies to gas vehicles produced after 1975 and diesel vehicles produced after the 1997 (I think) model year. The new diesel restrictions are for commercial vehicles over 14000# GVWR. So stick with an older diesel or much older gasser to do a swap in.
 

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California smog laws only applies to gas vehicles produced after 1975 and diesel vehicles produced after the 1997 (I think) model year. The new diesel restrictions are for commercial vehicles over 14000# GVWR. So stick with an older diesel or much older gasser to do a swap in.
Nice. That’s good to know. Even though I don’t live in Cali. 😂
 

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Hi guys I'm new here and relatively new to diesel swaps. I have a 1972 dodge power wagon with an 8ft service bed I'm hoping to save and put back to work. It has what I believe is a 360 in it now which it almost done for ad an auto transmission both of which are quite disappointing in performance. I'm an arborist by trade and am trying to go out on my own here in cali specifically in fire prevention so this truck would be pulling an 8000 pound chipper everywhere. I've been offered one of my old employers chip trucks, a 1987 GMC Forward 4000 with a rebuilt 4BD1TH anda 5spd trans with 217k miles for a super low price from him. Cali emissions makeit literally not possible to be on the road unless it has a whole new def system installed. I've towed a full load of chips and a 10k lbs chipper on the freeway at 55 no problem with this rig so I know it's capable to do the job. The power wagon is 4x4 with a dana 44 in he front and I was told the oil pan configuration would be quite the issue. I can't recall the model of the transfer case but I'm sure it will be a nightmare to fitup. My question to you folks is can this swap be done within reason? I've never swapped anything before but am a decent mechanic, what am I really in for here guys? Am I wasting my time or should I chase this?

Thanks so much for your time everyone I look forward to hearing your thoughts!
For what its worth, finding one with an OEM manual 5spd is a good thing. They aren't common, and transmission swaps are not supported now as far as I know. A few years ago there were several options, but none that I am aware of at this time.
 
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