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Cummins ISC 350 swapped out for ISL 400


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Has anyone removed their 2001 Cummins ISC and replaced it with a newer ISL 400 with the common rail fuel system? I’m fairly sure the intake and exhaust will all adapt. My main concern is if my 2001 wiring harness will plug in to the newer ISL ECM and work correctly. Frank cleared up the wiring change that will be needed when changing from the pacbrake to the 2 stage jake brake. I know the newer ECM will need to be programmed to the existing Allison MH3000 trans. Any and all comments are appreciated.

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Theoretically it's possible.  The engines are very close, but the ISL has a slightly longer stroke crankshaft and several newer components.  

The problem is going to be cost.  This will be very expensive.  Probably $20-50k depending on how much you can do yourself and how much you get for your ISC. 

In the end you may be better off selling your coach and buying a new one with an ISL.  Better yet, find one with a 500hp ISM.  You'll love it.  

If you can locate one of the Banks kits for your ISC it will really wake it up.  But they have been out of production for several years.  

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Sorry, I forgot to mention that my 2001 ISC is blown up with a flat cam and seized tappet. I have to get a newer engine, so why not go with more torque?

thanks

Ken

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Well, I have had a reasonably hard time finding an ISL 400 with the common rail fuel system between 2003-2007. At this point there are only 3 on the radar. There’s an ‘02 with 52k miles with the same CM554 as my old ISC, but it has the CAPS fuel system. Then there’s an ‘06 that came out of a crashed motorhome. It has about 50k miles on it, but in the crash, it busted the bell housing when it ripped the trans. off. I’m not sure if there may be block or crankshaft damage. The last one, and maybe the best option is an ‘05 common rail w/ 64k miles on it. It has yet to be removed from the motorhome, so I could request the torque converter be included. I need one rated for the 1250 ft. lbs. of torque, not my existing one rated for 1000 ft. lbs. It has the CM850 in it, so I need to be sure the pins in the connector match the ones from my old CM554. Any thoughts from all of you Monacoers smarter than me?

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You’re miles ahead of any thoughts I’d have. All I have to offer is opinions, and mine are not worth much. 
 

If you search around, there are some very smart bus mechanics online. There’s a super sharp guy out of Canada on a paid platform, not YouTube. I’d have to go back and find it. Anyway I’ve watched some of his videos on the ISC repairs, he would know way more on the info you seek.

Edited by JDCrow
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Many, many moons ago I had the 8.3C in our 1994 Dynasty upgraded with a Bank's turbo kit.  It was very early days so I had to go to their factory to have it installed.  The upgrade raised the horse power from the original 300 to around 375 and the torque proportionately.

 

What is important here is that I'd had the Allison transmission repaired after a coolant leak into the system and at that time paid a little extra to have the gearbox upgraded from the MD spec to the HD spec to handle the extra torque the Bank's engine delivers.  As I had effectively an HD transmission the Banks technician changed the transmission programming so I am able to get all the torque the upgraded engine can deliver, even in the lower gears!  When in a hurry or climbing a grade I drive based upon the TIT (turbine intake temperature) gauge reading, backing off if the reading gets up to 1350F, the temperature I was advised beyond which the impeller blade can begin to deteriorate.

Since the upgrade we've traveled over 100,000 miles without any issues at all.  Except four wheelers are often surprised when our coach beats them away from a stop light and proceeds to leave them behind unless they stand on their throttle.

My advice is to consider rebuilding your old engine and upgrading it to get the extra torque you desire.  I think that would be the most cost effective solution.  The Cummins engines are very reconfigurable using different cylinder sleeves, pistons and camshafts.  An experienced Cummins technician should be able to rebuild your original engine to satisfy your requirements using just OEM replacement parts and avoid any issues with the electronics.

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19 minutes ago, BKWANAB said:

Many, many moons ago I had the 8.3C in our 1994 Dynasty upgraded with a Bank's turbo kit.  It was very early days so I had to go to their factory to have it installed.  The upgrade raised the horse power from the original 300 to around 375 and the torque proportionately.

 

What is important here is that I'd had the Allison transmission repaired after a coolant leak into the system and at that time paid a little extra to have the gearbox upgraded from the MD spec to the HD spec to handle the extra torque the Bank's engine delivers.  As I had effectively an HD transmission the Banks technician changed the transmission programming so I am able to get all the torque the upgraded engine can deliver, even in the lower gears!  When in a hurry or climbing a grade I drive based upon the TIT (turbine intake temperature) gauge reading, backing off if the reading gets up to 1350F, the temperature I was advised beyond which the impeller blade can begin to deteriorate.

Since the upgrade we've traveled over 100,000 miles without any issues at all.  Except four wheelers are often surprised when our coach beats them away from a stop light and proceeds to leave them behind unless they stand on their throttle.

My advice is to consider rebuilding your old engine and upgrading it to get the extra torque you desire.  I think that would be the most cost effective solution.  The Cummins engines are very reconfigurable using different cylinder sleeves, pistons and camshafts.  An experienced Cummins technician should be able to rebuild your original engine to satisfy your requirements using just OEM replacement parts and avoid any issues with the electronics.

Cummins told me that it was irreparable unless it was sent back to Cummins. At that point, they want to just sell me a new ISC engine. I finally got a price from Cummins for a factory rebuilt ISC engine. They want $24k for the engine and $13k to do the swap. It will take over 2 months to get the engine and a week or so to install it. The Cummins tech told me that my engine was already cranked up to the max 1000 ft. lbs. of torque, so there’s no more to gain. Since I live in Oregon, we have a lot of long 6%-8% hills to climb and descend. This is why I am leaning towards the 1200 ft. lbs. torque and 2 stage jake that comes with the ISL 400. It sounds like Cummins doesn’t want to do the upgrade, only because they have never done it before. They say it can be done though. As far as low mile used engines, the ISC and ISL are about the same price. 

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1 hour ago, Ken Thompson said:

Cummins told me that it was irreparable unless it was sent back to Cummins. At that point, they want to just sell me a new ISC engine. I finally got a price from Cummins for a factory rebuilt ISC engine. They want $24k for the engine and $13k to do the swap. It will take over 2 months to get the engine and a week or so to install it. The Cummins tech told me that my engine was already cranked up to the max 1000 ft. lbs. of torque, so there’s no more to gain. Since I live in Oregon, we have a lot of long 6%-8% hills to climb and descend. This is why I am leaning towards the 1200 ft. lbs. torque and 2 stage jake that comes with the ISL 400. It sounds like Cummins doesn’t want to do the upgrade, only because they have never done it before. They say it can be done though. As far as low mile used engines, the ISC and ISL are about the same price. 

Au….CONTRE.  I would NOT assume that the ISL 400 has the 2 stage Jake Brake.  YES, if that engine was slated for a Dynasty.  NO, it if was slated or came from a Camelot or Scepter.  When Monaco ran out of VGT exhaust brake engines in early 2009, they had spare Dynasty engines….same ISL 425…Difference was the addition of the 2 stage Jake Compression brake in the intake head.  They STILL had the VGT zone the exhaust and they worked “in conjunction” with each other…via the smart ECM. Monaco sent me the build sheet for a Scepter with the upgraded Dynasty mill….a $3,000 adder.

Just make sure that if you want the Jake, to verify….as in contacting Cummins.  They can tell you as it was a “factory installed” feature….as is the VGT….and not an ADD ON.  NOW…since you want a pre EGR engine, the stock ISL may well have the Jake…I don’t think so…..but VERIFY….

I pulled the 2006 brochures.  The Dynasty had the “Jake” listed.  The Camelots had a PAC BRAKE listed.  The Diplomats had an “Exhaust Braking” listed.  No mention of VGT at all.

I think, and Frank probably has more info, that the VGT was starting to be used circa 2004 or so.  There are a lot of posts about early issues….and many were actually converted back to manual.  Now a lot of these were on the HD pickups….so don’t take that as Gospel on the larger commercial engines like the ISL.

Just what my limited brain knows or thinks it knows….

EDIT…..also check the engine SN as the ones you are pursuing had a recall.

https://www.rv.net/forum/index.cfm/fuseaction/thread/tid/21665972/print/true.cfm

 

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1 hour ago, Tom Cherry said:

Au….CONTRE.  I would NOT assume that the ISL 400 has the 2 stage Jake Brake.  YES, if that engine was slated for a Dynasty.  NO, it if was slated or came from a Camelot or Scepter.  When Monaco ran out of VGT exhaust brake engines in early 2009, they had spare Dynasty engines….same ISL 425…Difference was the addition of the 2 stage Jake Compression brake in the intake head.  They STILL had the VGT zone the exhaust and they worked “in conjunction” with each other…via the smart ECM. Monaco sent me the build sheet for a Scepter with the upgraded Dynasty mill….a $3,000 adder.

Just make sure that if you want the Jake, to verify….as in contacting Cummins.  They can tell you as it was a “factory installed” feature….as is the VGT….and not an ADD ON.  NOW…since you want a pre EGR engine, the stock ISL may well have the Jake…I don’t think so…..but VERIFY….

I pulled the 2006 brochures.  The Dynasty had the “Jake” listed.  The Camelots had a PAC BRAKE listed.  The Diplomats had an “Exhaust Braking” listed.  No mention of VGT at all.

I think, and Frank probably has more info, that the VGT was starting to be used circa 2004 or so.  There are a lot of posts about early issues….and many were actually converted back to manual.  Now a lot of these were on the HD pickups….so don’t take that as Gospel on the larger commercial engines like the ISL.

Just what my limited brain knows or thinks it knows….

EDIT…..also check the engine SN as the ones you are pursuing had a recall.

https://www.rv.net/forum/index.cfm/fuseaction/thread/tid/21665972/print/true.cfm

 

Thanks Tom, all good info. I know about the wrist pin/rod failures and have the suspected serial numbers as part of my check list. I will also verify the deal with the 2 stage jake, as mentioned. I guess if the CM850 or Cm2150 won’t cross over, I will go with the 2002 ISL 400 I found with the CM554, which is the same as mine. As Frank said, I will have to retire the “O” wire for the jake, but other than that it should be the same.

3 hours ago, JDCrow said:

You’re miles ahead of any thoughts I’d have. All I have to offer is opinions, and mine are not worth much. 
 

If you search around, there are some very smart bus mechanics online. There’s a super sharp guy out of Canada on a paid platform, not YouTube. I’d have to go back and find it. Anyway I’ve watched some of his videos on the ISC repairs, he would know way more on the info you seek.

Awesome, the more info the better. Thanks!

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4 hours ago, Tom Cherry said:

   They STILL had the VGT zone the exhaust and they worked “in conjunction” with each other…via the smart ECM. Monaco sent me the build sheet for a Scepter with the upgraded Dynasty mill….a $3,000 adder.

 

I would say it was probably worth it!

I have the VGT brake, and it's not impressive at all! I'm actually considering installing a 2 stage compression brake myself.

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17 minutes ago, 96 EVO said:

I would say it was probably worth it!

I have the VGT brake, and it's not impressive at all! I'm actually considering installing a 2 stage compression brake myself.

That’s good to know! I definitely want the 2 stage jake. I have the pacbrake. It’s better than nothing, but going down long steep hills, the jake is 100% better. 

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Ken, I know I mentioned this to you offline but this is for the benefit of anyone else looking to buy a used engine. 

My recommendation is that you have someone connect the Cummins Insite software up to the used engine ECM.  It will require battery power and ground along with a data port harness. 

The 50 page ECM report will tell you basically all you need to know about the engine history and the engine parameter settings.  Did it have an overheating issue, trouble code history, fueling issue, oil pressure issue.  It will also tell you how it was driven including the power profile, fuel economy, real miles since it left the Cummins factory, the manufacturer of the vehicle the engine was in, and even how often the cruise control and Jake brakes were used.  In addition to engine miles it will also tell you the actual running and idle hours on the engine.  It is also important to be sure that the engine S/N actually matches the S/N in the ECM software and if the ECM has the latest software updates installed.

Getting the engine ECM data dump will go a long way in helping you determine if the used engine is a good one or one with problems.

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11 hours ago, Frank McElroy said:

Ken, I know I mentioned this to you offline but this is for the benefit of anyone else looking to buy a used engine. 

My recommendation is that you have someone connect the Cummins Insite software up to the used engine ECM.  It will require battery power and ground along with a data port harness. 

The 50 page ECM report will tell you basically all you need to know about the engine history and the engine parameter settings.  Did it have an overheating issue, trouble code history, fueling issue, oil pressure issue.  It will also tell you how it was driven including the power profile, fuel economy, real miles since it left the Cummins factory, the manufacturer of the vehicle the engine was in, and even how often the cruise control and Jake brakes were used.  In addition to engine miles it will also tell you the actual running and idle hours on the engine.  It is also important to be sure that the engine S/N actually matches the S/N in the ECM software and if the ECM has the latest software updates installed.

Getting the engine ECM data dump will go a long way in helping you determine if the used engine is a good one or one with problems.

Incredible, unless the engine is still in a vehicle I wonder how difficult it would be to get an ECM report done?

Recon

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40 minutes ago, Ray Davis said:

Incredible, unless the engine is still in a vehicle, I wonder how difficult it would be to get an ECM report done?

Recon

Ray, it appears from Frank's post that all is needed is a 12 VDC power source to bring the ECM back to life. Then the Insite software will be able to read all of the data inside the ECM.

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47 minutes ago, Ray Davis said:

Incredible, unless the engine is still in a vehicle I wonder how difficult it would be to get an ECM report done?

Recon

Any shop who can bench test an ECM can do this.  Cummins actually makes a bench test harness for that purpose.  It provides power and access to the data port.  Plug and play.

 

PXL_20220914_152158017.jpg

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1 hour ago, Frank McElroy said:

Any shop who can bench test an ECM can do this.  Cummins actually makes a bench test harness for that purpose.  It provides power and access to the data port.  Plug and play.

 

PXL_20220914_152158017.jpg

Thanks that's good info.  With the bench test harness a mobil tech might do it.   I was imagining me asking can I borrow your ECM for a while?                      I want to get Cummins to test it & down load the info.   

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17 hours ago, 96 EVO said:

I would say it was probably worth it!

I have the VGT brake, and it's not impressive at all! I'm actually considering installing a 2 stage compression brake myself.

Wow…l’m impressed.  A buddy, who ran a fleet of diesel dump trucks and did a lot work himself also considered that, but he thought you had to change out the head.  I thought the price was not unreasonable.

Yes, the VGT is certainly not as effective.  But my driving is mostly east of the Mississippi.  However, I have done some grades not for the faint of heart….like leaving Denver on I70 and getting through the Eisenhower Pass.  I stopped at the top and manually shifted into 1 or 2 and turned on the VGT.  I was pulling a 5,800 Hummer.  I may have feathered the Hummer’s brakes a few times, but made it down with no issues.  The Allison and Cummins told me that “THEY” were calling the shots and then shifted up to 3rd as there was not enough VGT.  I did, sparingly use the service brakes.  If you ever go to Sequoia from Sacramento the climb is tough….but the descent is tougher.  I had a heavier Yukon and would tap the M&G System occasionally.  Never got above 215 on the Allison or maybe 205 on the engine.

Be interesting to see how much work and parts…if you decide, write it up. 

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Well, being technologically retarded, it took me quite a long time to figure out the Cummins quickserve site. But while still waiting for the paper versions of the CM554 and CM850 wiring diagrams I was able to look them up.  I think I have determined that the CM850 wiring diagram does not match my old CM554. I have found a 2002 ISL400 with the CM554, so that may be the route I need to go. I have yet to find out what it come out of or if it has been cranked up to 1250 ft. lbs. torque as I'm looking for. plus from some other info, I will probably need to get a torque converter that's able to accept that torque increase. That may be a call to Allison.

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48 minutes ago, Tom Cherry said:

Wow…l’m impressed.  A buddy, who ran a fleet of diesel dump trucks and did a lot work himself also considered that, but he thought you had to change out the head.  I thought the price was not unreasonable.

 

Nope, it bolts right up to the stock head, right below the valve cover (which needs to be replaced with a slightly taller model). After install, you need someone with the Insite software to change setting in your ECM.

The Camelot / Scepter even has the wiring harness for the engine brake switch already in place.

A member on IRV2 recently made the mod on his ISC equipped Fleetwood RV. 

Edited by 96 EVO
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