OM606.692 Turbodiesel into FJ40 (SBC Swap) (1 Viewer)

ravenholm

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OM606TD with NV4500/Orion into a 1969ish FJ40

Hi!
I've been working on an interesting swap. I haven't documented it thus far becuase my time limited and there is a deadline on the rig being running. However, I wanted to get the bullet points down and post them in case anyone else is pursueing a similar setup and is looking for info.

To my knowledge, no one has documented this engine going into a '40 thus far. Not saying it hasn't been done, but after months and months of rearch, the closest I came to finding this unicorn is an excellent thread on this forum about a 606TD in a FJ80.

Why this engine/tranny?

We are overhauling the rig to be a serious family overland vehical. This will include overseas trekking as well as stateside adventures.
Diesel is the clear choice, as the 350 that was in the truck got 7mpg with a tailwind and no trailer. We will have a trailer and be remote - I need range enough to not fear running out of fuel in the Yukon.

Why Mercedes? Small, quiet, high-revving (more transmission options), reliable, internationally available. Also I just love their diesels. So pretty.

Why not a OM617 - that's comparativly common in a 40 and the engines are readily availible and MUCH cheaper?
We are gonna be towing a small but dense trailer of gear, and I was not sure the 617 would perform well under the added load of a close to 6K pound GVW. Also, the OM606 has the destinction of being the most evolved Merc diesel that can still be 100% mechanically controlled. Which is kinda cool. 6 cylinders has, according to some, and advantage in being a naturally balanced engine and thus somewhat gentler on internals such as the timing chain.

NV4500 - I wanted burly, 5-speed, and something that could be adapted to the 606. Pretty much narrowed it down the NV4500 right there.

Orion - I crushed the transfer case and front drive shaft on a trip through Ochoco last summer. So might as well upgrade.

I took a lot of measurements, but not enough to be really sure the engine would even fit. So I just took gamble and went for it.
Oil pan could be a serious problem, as could be the oil filter, intake manifold, etc. etc. Lots of potential dealbreakers. Including straight up just being too long.

A few months ago I found (which wasn't easy) an OM606.962 long block in good running order. I bought it.
I overhauled it as follows:
Fuel Pump: Swapped the electronic 606 pump for a mechanical 603. Lots of great info on the northern euro drift car forums on this engine.
I had Dieselmeken (Goran Lindgren) rebuild the 603 pump with his 7.5mm elements and tune it for a power output range of 300-400hp. His external ALDA and fuel screws will allow me to balance this to the turbo output.

Checked timing chain stretch (within spec) and set the engine to 0* TDC using the OEM proceedure. Required pulling pre-chamber 1. That was stubborn. Installed and timed the pump per Goran's instructions. He also sent me a lot of strange swedish candy that my children snarfled.

Injectors: Pulled all the injectors, cleaned them, and installed Bosio injector tips.

Fuel Filter: OM603 fuel filter - the 606 fuel filter and hoses are meant for the electronic pump and the fittings suck anyways.

Turbo: Holset HX35 Turbo

Exhaust Headers: Elbe Engineering in Estonia built the tubular headers.

Glow Plugs: Nice new ones from Bosch France. None broke coming out. *Phew.

Next I purchased an OM606 -> GM V8 adapter kit from Bendtsen's Transmission Adapters. Although the owner has a bit of a reputation for being tough to work with, I found him to be gruff but reasonible. He is also the only source for an adapter I could find. 4x4 labs MAY make one, some components of that appeared to be aluminum and I felt steel needed to be used. In the Bendsten adapter, the crank adapter is steel.

The kit is really a thing of beauty. It uses the Mercs flex plate and starter and adapts that to a neutral balance GM350 flywheel.
It includes a nice phospher bronze pilot bushing already installed.

From AA, I sourced a rebuilt NV4500 with upgraded mainshaft and 5th gear nut, a bellhousing adapter that fits to a Chev 350 (as the adapter is designed for a GM v8) and the Orion kit with a Centerforce I clutch.

It is worth putting out there, as others have re. the 617 swaps, that this is NOT a cheap swap. Not even close.
The main drive, from engine to the orion, ran me over 10k USD, not including some unique tools required by the Merc.

Fortunately, it all fit together beautifully, much more easily than I'd expected. The adapter plate worked perfectly, clutch went in and aligned very nicely, locks up tight and releases like it's supposed to.

The only small issue is that the bolt locations from the adapter to the bellhousing aren't perfect - the top 5 bolts align, but bottom bolts are nowhere close. I'm deciding how to deal with this, but with the top 5 it's held together stoutly enough to proceed while I consider options.

I pulled the 350, Downey Adatper, H42, and Transfer case as a single unit. Dropped the bib and the front bull bar and it was a pretty straightforward pull. Pulling engines is scary.

Then I lifted the 606 and NV4500 into place - the Merc engine mounts lined up about perfectly with the old mounts from the 350! New perches not needed - hooray!

The intake manifold clears the break booster (Not by a lot, but enough). The Oil filter clears the break booster. The Oil pan clears the front front pumpken by enough to make me comfortable (truck is on an OME HD Dakar kit).

The alternator is a little too close for comfort to the frame rail. I'll figure out something.

There is NO room in the front for an intercooler, and the SPAL low profile fan will indeed be necessary. I'll still likely have to modify the radiator mount for max clearance.
I'll either do a top-mounted intercooler or run without one.

I have installed Dakota Digital's FJ40 cluster and will have EGT and Boost in the message centers, so I can track whether or not I need an intercooler. I'm hoping not - the bigger turbo and free-flowing exhaust may make enough airflow to keep EGTs in the safe zone. We'll see.

Battery and other odds and ends will have to be creative, but the hood closes with room to spare. Driveline angle will be about perfect.

That's where I've gotten so far!

I have a few pictures, but mostly just greasy engine parts strewn across my garage and driveway (did I mention this is happening outside? Muuudy wet blegh. So not worth much, honestly.

So I'll post them if people are interested, but mostly I just want to get this info up in case others are searching.

Long and short of it: It appears you can fit an OM606.962 into a FJ40. Bendsten's Adapter works great. You will spend a lot of money.
I'm happy to answer specific questions. I also have a strong running but thirsty Chev 350 mounted to an H42 if someone is looking for that setup (minus transfer case - need that for the orion.) PM me - I'll post in the classifieds section as well.

Many thanks to this community for getting me this far - I've never worked on engines before this and it would be absolutely impossible without the knowledge of those who've dared before and bothered to record it.

*gn
 

ravenholm

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Here are some pics! Old and new engines side by side, SBC coming out of the truck.

IMG_0871.JPG


IMG_0869.JPG


IMG_0862.JPG
 

47coeman

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Hi There !!!
I am also getting ready for the same install as you have the engine and it is nice to see someone else is moving in the same direction as me. I have a longtime friend that is the owner of North West Diesel Off-road up in Idaho that does these engines in many vehicles mostly Jeeps and some Toyotas he is also going to help me at his shop. My first one will be a install in my 45 to the left and another later in a 40 to 45 conversion custom frame. My son lives in Portland be good to get by and see your rig when I come up to visit. as for the mods I am mostly going with your same ones to make it move along nicely. Best Skip
 
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was your original mercedes transmission a standard or automatic? i am waiting and have been waiting for a long time for a 4x4 labs one to get built and they are just not coming. i looked into bendtsends adapters (the guy was a real immature ass ) but all that said was that his m617 adapter wouldn't work with a chevy manual. i don't know if its because he doesn't have a standard fly wheel or what. his website says his om606 adapters will work on a standard but nothing to say he has an adapter for for the the NV4500 to OM617. just wondering if he has a adapted fly wheel of did your engine come with one?

just reread his website and i guess the om617 kit has been redesigned.

are you happy with the adapter kit quality from him. i may have to put up with his attitude and get one just to get my build going again.
 
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ravenholm

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Hi Skip!

Very cool news. I have heard some rumors of North West Diesel doing some really cool things, but couldn't find anything out there re. devilish details, and I'm hesitant to hit up retail businesses directly for advice when I'm intending to do the work myself - those guys work hard for their money and I hate to take up billable time asking uneducated freebie questions. Also a common swap in G-Wagons overseas. Happy to meet up next time you're in Portland.

*gn
 

ravenholm

Father of Crows
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Messages
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was your original mercedes transmission a standard or automatic? i am waiting and have been waiting for a long time for a 4x4 labs one to get built and they are just not coming. i looked into bendtsends adapters (the guy was a real immature ass ) but all that said was that his m617 adapter wouldn't work with a chevy automatic. i don't know if its because he doesn't have a standard fly wheel or what. his website says his om606 adapters will work on a standard but nothing to say he has an adapter for for the the NV4500 to OM617. just wondering if he has a adapted fly wheel of did your engine come with one?

Original Merc trans was an automatic. The guy at bendsten's is challenging. He spent a lot of air telling me why my transmission was a bad choice from his perspective (too heavy), but in the end, he was happy to sell me some very good machine work. Just put on your thickest skin and your humblest 'tude and go for it. Bob Bendsten supplied the flywheel, but it's nothing special other than being new - a neutral balance 350 fly. He had the kit on the shelf, is shipped out that day. It consisted of the following (names are not tech. correct):
1. aluminum Adapter plate - this matches the bellhousing to the engine bolt pattern.
2. Flex Plate Adapter Plate - this bolts on to the stock flex plate and consist of an aluminum plate with steel central section that houses the pilot bushing.
3. The flywheel, which bolts to the flex plate adapter.

His website is confusing in my opinion and vague. Basically I assumed that since the NV4500 was used behind GMv8s in some applications is had the correct bolt pattern. He confirmed that it would work over the phone.

I have no idea re. whether is adapters will work with automatic transmissions.

*gn
 
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thanks. the i talked to him by phone and by email he told me that it wouldn't work unless it was an NV3500. that didnt make sense to me and when i questioned him he got into name calling. i walked away thinking if i buy something from him and run into trouble is he going to tell me to screw myself and leave me in the lurch. anyway now that they are retooled for manual transmissions maybe i'll look again.
 
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ravenholm

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The pump and turbo should allow me to push into 300-400 hp without excessive wear or major milage impact. At least that's what the swedish pump god told me.
 
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do you have a dieselmenken pump?

edit: I missed that in you initial post. that should be sweet. I have one for my 617 but haven't been able to try it out yet. I bet youll love that engine!!
 
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This is going to be a very cool swap. I have an OM603 and 700r4 ready to go into mine. Waiting until I buy a house, but it will happen! Looking forward to seeing how this works out. I know a guy (not sure if hes on the board) who has a 603 and an NV4500 and was very happy with the set up. Good luck!
 
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Hi Skip!

Very cool news. I have heard some rumors of North West Diesel doing some really cool things, but couldn't find anything out there re. devilish details, and I'm hesitant to hit up retail businesses directly for advice when I'm intending to do the work myself - those guys work hard for their money and I hate to take up billable time asking uneducated freebie questions. Also a common swap in G-Wagons overseas. Happy to meet up next time you're in Portland.

*gn

I am doing a similar conversion in a Jeep Cherokee for a customer. Using the Om 606 and GM 700R4 transmission with the Bendtsens adapter. I find that when the transmission oil pan is level to the ground the engine valve cover and oil pan is not. The engine should sit at about a 15 degree angle and appears to be only about 8 degrees. Do you have this problem.

I also welcome questions from DIY. Enclosed are some pics of a Jeep JK I just finished with the OM 606 engine.

Thanks Ron
Northwest Diesel Offroad
Bayview Idaho
www.northwestdieseloffroad.com

P1010004.JPG


P1010005.JPG


P1010006.JPG
 
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ravenholm

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I am doing a similar conversion in a Jeep Cherokee for a customer. Using the Om 606 and GM 700R4 transmission with the Bendtsens adapter. I find that when the transmission oil pan is level to the ground the engine valve cover and oil pan is not. The engine should sit at about a 15 degree angle and appears to be only about 8 degrees. Do you have this problem.

I also welcome questions from DIY. Enclosed are some pics of a Jeep JK I just finished with the OM 606 engine.

Thanks Ron
Northwest Diesel Offroad
Bayview Idaho
www.northwestdieseloffroad.com

Wow, beautiful work, Ron! Wish my handycraft looked so polished.

I think i understand what you're describing. I DO have the same issue. I had assumed it was just how the 606 is, and not related to the adapter/bellhousing arrangment. But not that i think about it, it would indeed be the fault of the adapter or bellhousing.

My Nv4500 is definity twisted or clocked about 15 degrees towards the passenger side. I chose to just level the engine and let the trans sit twisted since it puts the shift tower in a better pisition relative to the driver's seat.

Is that a mistake or likely to caus issues with the trans over time?

Cheers,

*gn
 

ravenholm

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It's so cool to hear about all the mudders working with these engines in our little trucks. VERY encouraging since i don't feel like i'm in uncharted territory.

Ron, do you run intercoolers in your 606 swaps? If so, where do you find space? Lastly, do you upgrade the pumps and turbos or run stock equipment?

*gn
 

47coeman

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A solution for the intercooler is to run it on top of the engine there is a guy close to where I live that has done that and had great results. Yes you will need one with the mods turbo and extra fuel being used. As for the engine tilt 15 degrees I have concurred with Ron it should be addressed just how now that the adapters have been made is the question.
 

47coeman

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Just thinking Raven...
If there was a 15 degree tilt to the passenger side how would that effect the turbo and other parts. Also interested in your exhaust header what does it look like and where did it come from.
 

ravenholm

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Just thinking Raven...
If there was a 15 degree tilt to the passenger side how would that effect the turbo and other parts. Also interested in your exhaust header what does it look like and where did it come from.
47,
Been trying to figure out how to PM you my ph#, but I'm forumdumb.

Exhaust header is from elbe.ee. Looks like the one here: elbe.ee/products/om606-turbo-kit/

, although i didnt by the full kit w/ turbo and laminova IC, and i wrapped it myself.

It's very nice, compact, and fully divided all the way to the turbo. Pulse order is engineered for optimum spool on a t3 flange (they have other flange designs too.)

Shipped fast from estonia! Henrik was great to work with.

*gn
 

ravenholm

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Did the guy with the top mount IC you know have to cut the hood and build a hood scoop? Kinda don't wanna do that to my hood, but if I have to I have too....



A solution for the intercooler is to run it on top of the engine there is a guy close to where I live that has done that and had great results. Yes you will need one with the mods turbo and extra fuel being used. As for the engine tilt 15 degrees I have concurred with Ron it should be addressed just how now that the adapters have been made is the question.
 

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