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Motor Comparisons

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  • Motor Comparisons

    Looking for some input about issues with engines for our new rig.

    Currently looking at Cummins ISL 400 HP or equivalent (Cat C9)

    Some thoughts on the differences in performance, reliability, servicability, etc on these two engines (or other suggestions). The engine will power a 500gwt 1250-1500 GPM pumper with 5 man cab and aluminum body for a cummunity that is mostly flat terrain. I am looking for an engine/trans match that has some "get up and go" and can top out at 65-70 MPH. I'm no motorhead by any stretch so feel free to speak in novice terms .

  • #2
    With a 1250 or 1500 pump you would probably not need 400 hp. 330 or 350 should do fine for the pump size. The price difference between a 330 and a 400 is about 16k to 18k depending upon the chassis make. We run 330 and 370 Cummins in our engines. Both have good pick up and top out at 67-69. I think the 370 is about 2 seconds faster in acceleration than the 330 not enough to really matter IMO.


    • #3
      motor comparisons

      If your'e planning on running 65 - 70 MPH you need to get a big block. The ISM compared to the ISL gives you much better torque and you can use the 450HP with the jake and bigger 4000 series transmission to do a lot of your braking. Makes a big difference when you jump on the brakes in a real emergency. I don't think I've ever heard anyone complain about too much horsepower. Trucks 10 years from now will be much more powerful than they are now so do your replacements a favor and power their trucks up today.


      • #4
        Opinion from the trucking industry.....

        Something you may not have thought of is the percentage of the time the engine is working at or near its rated horsepower. While it may be true that a lesser engine may do the job, it may well be pushed to 100% of its capacity. A larger engine ( even if you " turn down" the horsepower w/ the computer to keep the driver from hot rodding. ( Admit it, it happens )) will be doing the same work but not so close to maximum output. Translation: Engine works easier. This brings lower operating tempuratures, less fuel consumption, and less stress on the engine, which can lead to a longer life. ( Works quieter as well. Not rev'ed up so high ) Also mentioned above is the availability of the bigger transmision w/ the larger engine. Very good point. Do you want to spend your money on equipment, or do you want to invest it in your equipment?
        We do not rise to the occasion. We fall back to our level of training.


        • #5
          My POC FD has a rescue engine with a 370 Cummins engine. It has a 2000 gpm pump and 1000 gallons of water. It will easily go 75 miles an hour.

          This process isn't as hard as people make it really. Tell the manufacturers what you want the rig to do and make them engineer the right size engine and transmission and rear end to make it happen.

          Crazy, but that's how it goes
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          • #6
            General rule of thumb: A 300-350 horse power engine is really all you need for an engine. Go with a 400+ for tankers, quints, aerials....etc.
            I have only 2 allegiances, to my country and to my God. The rest of you are fair game.


            • #7
              About a year ago we took delivery of a Pierce Lance engine....so it's a fairly big, long truck. It carries 1000 gal. of water with a 1500 gpm pump. We specced a 425 hp DDC with the EVS 4000 tranny. We have been nothing but happy with that combination. Plenty of get up and go. The spec called for top speed of 72 mph. It easily does 75mph down the highway without much effort.

              We replaced a 1988 commercial chassis which had a 300 hp Cummins in it and a 1500 gpm pump. We felt that truck was underpowered, so we went with the bigger HP in the new engine.


              • #8
                When it comes to engines I find if you are specing a Electronic throttle on the pump panel, I prefer the Detroit's over Cat's and Cummings due to the fact that Cat's and Cumming have a delay of about 1 second when increasing the RPM's. The Detroit's have instant response.

                I will say that if you are getting an Aerial or Tanker (2500 Gal or more) you should at a minimum start at 475 HP. Just my opinion.


                • #9

                  Just about any engine / transmission combo will be able to achieve your top speed requirement - they just spec an axle ratio that works. Just keep in mind that the faster you spec for a top end, the slower it is off the line.

                  I find that the smaller transmission / engine combos (ie. EVS 3000 with MBE 900 series / ISC / ISL / CAT C7 etc) are more responsive, and a little "zippier" for lack of a better term, off the line. It seems like the turbo winds up quicker, and the tranny responds faster than the big ones.

                  At the same time, I agree that if you spec a larger engine transmission combo, it won't have to work as hard at the scene when pumping big water.


                  • #10
                    Be careful

                    I've sold Pierce and E-One, over 100 trucks. Here are a few tips to think about.

                    The cat C7/C9 should be avoided at all costs. To many are giving out in the first year.

                    Detroit is only offering the MBE900 series small block. Series 60 is good, but a big block (430hp+).

                    The Cummins Isl is great. Small block up to 425hp. For your needs go with 370 or 425 hp, 400 is no longer offered. The price difference between 330 and 370 is about 4k while the dif between 370 and 425 is 5k.
                    The Cummins is by far more reliable and has a great service net.

                    For your needs I would suggest the 370 and put the savings into alum wheels or led lighting. Maybe HID spotlights.

                    For the 425 and under you will be using the Allison 3060 series. Great overall for a medium duty trans. You pick up some more reliability with the Allison 4000 series. But to take full advantage of the heavier unit you need 470 or 500 hp to make it shine.



                    • #11
                      Our 2005 Kme Excel pumper came with a Cummins ISL 400 hp engine & Allison EVS 3000 trans. It also has a Hale Qmax 1500 gpm pump, the engine has more than plenty amount of " POWER " when loaded with 750 gallons of water !


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