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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been shopping around, and all the diesels in my price range seem to be 6.9l's. I know very little about the powerstrokes, only what I picked up from working next to the diesel mech. at ford. And I know jack about these older models. How reliable are they? They pull good? Mpg? Anything to look for while shopping?
I've got my eye on a '90 crew cab f350, 4x4 that had a long block put in it in 2000. Otherwise, it could be 202,000 miles, or 302,000; he's not sure.
I'm only looking for a part time hauler and pull truck for the bronco. It won't be driven very often, but I don't want to waste what little money I've got.

Thanks
 

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90 SHOULD have a 7.3L idi(noit a powerstorke, basically a bored out 6.9L

very simple engine, but not very powerfull.........
prohbably rated for 150 horse. will pull 6 k not to bad, but your foot will be on the floor and hills will be slow.
a turbo kit helps big time on power.
engine is VERY simple to keep running, bascially 3 power wires to the engine and your gow plug controller is all you need to run it.
pumps go bad about every 100k and there about $400 bucks.
major problems include bad exhuast vales, dropping exhuast valves(had one do it) head gaskets with high mileage, and cavitation of the back to cylinders(though not as bad on the 6.9L) bewarry or REBORED engines, cavitation more likely.

im driving a 93 as a driver right now with a 7.3L idi with a factory turbo, its not bad, but my 97 powerstroke with a 10k trailer behind it will outrun this one empty.
 

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Just to add to the problems, the heads like to crack on the sharper side of the pre-combustion chamber, but its not really that common. And small cracking is acceptable there anyways.
I believe horsepower is 185 and torque is 345 for the 7.3. And both engines are 100% better and more powerful if its in front of a manual transmission.
 

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MikE2 said:
Just to add to the problems, the heads like to crack on the sharper side of the pre-combustion chamber, but its not really that common. And small cracking is acceptable there anyways.
I believe horsepower is 185 and torque is 345 for the 7.3. And both engines are 100% better and more powerful if its in front of a manual transmission.
i dont think so mike.
i think its 175 for a NA version, as my turbo is 185......
 

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If you have or get one with low power, change the muffler,it's stopped up. We built two engines in an 87 F350 before we found that out.
 

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BurnedB said:
i dont think so mike.
i think its 175 for a NA version, as my turbo is 185......
gawddammit.....you made me dig my books out


According to Motor,
the 6.9 ranges in HP from 146 to 170, and the torque ranges from 278 to 315 at 1800 RPM's, depending on year

the N/A 7.3 is 180 HP and 345 ft lbs
7.3 turbo is 185 and 360
 

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appy said:
.3's, but I figure even it should out-pull a 460.....right?
Oh yeah, it's got a 5spd also.
haha, that 94 f359 460 truck i just bought last month will romp and stomp all over my 93 idi 7.3L w factory turbo.......................
a big block will eat, spit out, then run over any near stock idi ford diesel.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
BurnedB said:
haha, that 94 f359 460 truck i just bought last month will romp and stomp all over my 93 idi 7.3L w factory turbo.......................
a big block will eat, spit out, then run over any near stock idi ford diesel.
oh reeeaaalllly?

Then maybe I should look closer at the couple of 460 dually's I've found then?
 

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I know it said 6.9 on the valve cover. I also know that its pretty weak compared to the 7.3's, but I figure even it should out-pull a 460.....right?
Oh yeah, it's got a 5spd also.
My 460 will outdo any 7.3 non turbo diesel, even with the truck pulling a full load. Up hills and down.

The 460 pulling the same weight as the powerstroke turbo diesel (I've pulled with both), the 460 takes off quicker off of the line and can keep going just fine but damn that hill. The powerstroke will take that hill better every time.

oh and gas mileage,well unless you're loaded(cash wise), or only pull short distances, you don't want to pull with a 460. That is why the 460 trucks are easier to find cheaper now.

In the same round trip I spent 480 in gas that the powerstroke did in 230 bucks. There is just no comparison.

For the older diesel, sure she runs like a dog pulling, really, you will beat your head against the steering wheel it is so bad, but it will run forever, and ever, and ever.
 

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While you're doing that, compare the difference between the gas truck, to the cost of diesel: purchase price alone for the gas, and purchase price + turbo/intercooler for the diesel. Also compare the cost of fuel, range (unloaded and loaded, and city/highway), and maintainence costs, for both
 

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Audra said:
For the older diesel, sure she runs like a dog pulling, really, you will beat your head against the steering wheel it is so bad, but it will run forever, and ever, and ever.
that is great!!!!
gotta do something to keep yourself entertained while you are hitting 3,200 in 3rd gear...........

i know, we pulled 15-20 k behind a 90 7.3L all the time.........
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I have heard the gas motors are thirstier while pulling, possibly the reason they are cheaper to buy? Plus, I feel more confident fixing a gas motor, repair, rebuild, etc. Never done anything to a diesel. I know I can do it, just leery cause I never have.
 

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appy said:
I have heard the gas motors are thirstier while pulling, possibly the reason they are cheaper to buy? Plus, I feel more confident fixing a gas motor, repair, rebuild, etc. Never done anything to a diesel. I know I can do it, just leery cause I never have.
how much $$ are those trucks down there?
im looking to get about 4,500 for my 93 7.3L turbo 2wd dually ex cab with no rot..... paint ruff, but its an XLT and a 5 speed.
truck has 185 on it, and th engine has 100k on it(i installed when i bought it)
am i low in comparision to down there?
 

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We have two natural 7.3s in International bobtails hauling mail. One has way over 800,000 miles and is just now needing it's second engine. They get serviced every 10,000 miles at a minimum and often go longer between oil changes. The owner used to drop the oil in a vacant lot to save a couple bucks, so the truck might go several years without seeing a competent mechanic.

It's true they're not real racy but they just keep on pulling.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
this one really got my attention as well, and is in town.
"1987 FORD F350, LARIAT, CREW CAB, green, 112K miles, 6.9 diesel, auto trans., P/windows, PDL, cruise control, tilt steering wheel, 355 limited slip rear-end, heavy duty rear bumper, gooseneck hitch, wired for electric brakes, new tires. $4,100"
 

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i would stay away from the 6.9. the one that i drove and pulled with was not very powerful at all. if you dont drive it that much then go with a 460, they gots plenty of power.
 

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The 6.9 really isn't that bad of an engine. My buddy has an 85 F250 with nearly 300,000 on the original engine. Yes, it can be a bit dogish, but it will pull what you need it to. He has pulled some insane loads with it and it just keeps on going. He still gets 17mpg too and that's with a bone stock engine, 33's, and 3.73 gears.

A turbo really wakes up these engines, so don't dismiss them completely, especially if you find a good deal on one.
 
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