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R2-8 Diesel conversion

1765 Views 30 Replies 13 Participants Last post by  Uncle Douglas
I talked to a reputable Rovers shop today about replacing my 3.9 to an R2-8 Cummins in my 1995 NAS Defender 90. I wasn't at all shocked at the price ( as I thought it would have been much more actually ) and think it would be a world of difference over all . My questions are : 1 would this help the reliability level . 2 would it decrease the value or increase the value of my truck ? I'm guessing from what I've scene increase? This would allow it to be a life long drivable vehicle without having to lay under it. They would also while its apart treat the frame . Feedback would be appriciated .
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I understand your frustration, but these are 25+ year old trucks (and electrics). 128k is not uncommon for these engines and they easily run twice that if properly maintained. It sounds like you have a minor issue with both your engine and your mechanic's competence. I have a rebuilt 3.9 in my truck and it is as reliable as an anvil. I pulled the old engine at 140k to find the only real problem was a badly worn timing set (I do no like nylon timing gears). If the compression is good, and not burning oil, I would fix whatever minor issue you are having. If you are hard over on a R2.8, do as @Red90 suggested and call Uncle Doug.
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I'm guessing most guys trailer these to events? To try and drive one would be to risky .
Perhaps some do, but I know folks who drive some pretty "well worn" trucks half way across the country to attend events and use them as daily drivers. These are old trucks, and old electrics can be troublesome. Fuel pumps, ignition modules or any for a handful of sensors could go bad and cause problems. I chased a intermittently bad TPS for a while before finding the issue. Find someone who knows these V8 engines. A modern Land Rover mechanics will not be familiar with these engines unless they have been doing this for a very long time. There is a thread on this site that discusses mechanic recommendations for old Defenders your area.
I've never met a truly happy 3.9 owner bragging about its reliability and 250,000 miles of joyful travels! Lol.
I am very happy with my warmed over 3.9 and would drive it anywhere (other than 12mpg and getting wet when it rains even with the top on). As well as my truck runs, I would not consider a motor swap. Plus, it passed smog.
Mine is also registered as a historic now. You may not care about smog (now), but the next owner might.
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I have 168k on the truck and all of it looks like this (less time on the motor I rebuilt about 8 years ago). I do not like rust or grease.
When I tore it down, this was the only real problem I found (other than the excessive use of orange RTV by the PO). Has a nice Cloyes double timing set in it now.
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