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High altitude N/A performance.

Discussion in '6.9L IH & 7.3L IDI Diesels' started by MrStretch, Feb 8, 2019.

  1. MrStretch

    MrStretch Registered User

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    I’m a GC that tows a ~5k car hauler full of tools with my 92 CC. Everyone told me before I bought it that I would be disappointed and it is somewhat true. My question is what can be done to tune my IDI to run best at 5-6k ft without going straight for a turbo? I’m not much of a mechanic and am not ready to tackle a turbo kit just yet.
     
  2. Knuckledragger

    Knuckledragger blowing chunks

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    Stanadyne actually made IPs for high altitude, perhaps someone here will be able to provide one. Or try Conestoga Diesel. They rebuild and modify IPs for the idi.

    I took mine to 5000+ feet a month ago and had no issues, but was not towing anything.
     
  3. austin92

    austin92 Full Access Member

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    There’s not a lot you can do for a na engine at any altitude. Larger exhaust, clean air filter, proper timing. There’s a few cams but they don’t make a huge difference. I know you said you’re not ready for a turbo but I think that’s the only way you’ll be happy with your trucks performance


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  4. hesutton

    hesutton The Anti-Anderson Supporting Member

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    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk[/QUOTE]
    These are good suggestions. Several companies have made better exhausts for the NA IDI's, Stan's Headers makes a set for the IDI as well. Torque cam available through typ4 here was originally developed to help NA logging trucks have more power. Proper timing and IP calibration would be good as well. Mel at Conestoga Diesel would be able to fix you up.

    But, like the others have said, a turbo would make a world of difference and after you spend the money on exhaust, IP, and/or cam, you would be close to the cost of a new turbo kit.

    Heath
     
  5. Kevo1288

    Kevo1288 Full Access Member

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  6. gandalf

    gandalf Senior Member

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    I'll have to agree with all the above. The best solution for altitude is a turbo.

    Not too long ago I had to clear out an aunt's apartment in Reno. I hauled the largest UHaul trailer over Donner Pass with my '92 CCLB Dually, NA. The altitude didn't effect the truck as much as I feared, but I did lay down a smoke screen. My truck is set up to run at sea level, feeding the engine the proper amount of fuel for 0 altitude. Donner Pass is 7000 feet, and the truck was way over-fueled there. My exhaust would have made some young kid proud.

    Smoke.JPG

    The video is better, offers a better idea of what it was like.
     
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  7. Thewespaul

    Thewespaul Supporting Vendor Supporting Member

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    You need cold air in and to help get the hot air out to lower egts. A proper exhaust for an na engine will help tremendously. As will a cold air intake. You’ll want a better exhaust for turbo anyways, so doing the exhaust now is a no brainer, something else not mentioned is a water meth setup, when done correctly this can make as much towing difference as a turbo, but obviously at the cost of expendable water meth mixture or windshield washer fluid.
     
  8. MrStretch

    MrStretch Registered User

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    That’s literally what my truck looks like pulling any kind of pass even empty unless I downshift and poke along at 35. I bought my truck out of Portland so it is setup for sea level as well.
     
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  9. MrStretch

    MrStretch Registered User

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    I will have to research water meth. I’m more tempted to buy a second IDI with a turbo than attempt to install a turbo on my existing truck. Just not sure I’m enough of a mechanic to own two 25+ yo trucks.
     
  10. austin92

    austin92 Full Access Member

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    I thought about suggesting water meth but I figured with no turbo, it’d probably be a custom setup and manually activated. I want to run water meth for egt control but it will add a little power too. I think I’m going to run mostly prometh components with a snow performance 10gal truck bed tank


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  11. Kevo1288

    Kevo1288 Full Access Member

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    How fast would that tank run out @austin92
     
  12. lotzagoodstuff

    lotzagoodstuff Supporting Member Supporting Member

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    I towed many trailers with my n/a 1992 and it really didn't like hills or altitude. When I towed a car hauler it was literally third gear 3/4 throttle or better on some steep legs of most passes. It really didn't really hurt anything. Well maybe my ego....nope. It was unloaded most of the time so the occasional slow tow was fine with me.

    I can tell you that a turbo will make towing a completely different game. Although I don't really love my Powderchoke, when towing at altitude it's really hard to compare the two as the performance is really night and day versus my old IDI.

    All the other stuff will help marginally: a turbo will change your truck majorly at altitude.

    Tough decision ahead of you, but you'll be fine whether you keep your rig set up as "Smokey" :smoke: or turn her into "Little Whistle" :peelout

    :popcorn
     
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  13. riphip

    riphip Supporting Member Supporting Member

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    Propane would help a lot for cheap w/o turbo but it will warm it up.
     
  14. Oledirtypearl86

    Oledirtypearl86 Full Access Member

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    I agree with the previous suggestions these motors are big air pumps so more air in and more air out = more fuel able to be burnt =more power . Wes had a good point some water/meth would give it a bump of power and if your concerned about putting a turbo on there are people on here 24/7 and they are always willing to help and a bolt on turbo kit is a pretty easy puzzle and comes with instructions
     
  15. chris142

    chris142 Full Access Member

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    I drove ours through mammoth,ca. About 8000 ft. I was not loaded. Power seemed to be the same but I fumigated every intersection without trying.i was certain that the libtards in the area were ready to hang me.
     

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