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Readers’ Diesels

John Lehenbauer
Nov 13, 2018
Photographers: Readers
Photo 2/9   |   Readers Diesels 1992 Ford F 350

The 1-Ton

Year/Make/Model: ’92 Ford F-350
Owner: Phil Mcmurchy
Hometown: Selkirk, Manitoba, Canada
Engine: 5.9L Cummins I-6
Transmission: Getrag five-speed manual
Odometer: 392,000 kilometers (244,000 miles)
Fuel Economy: 15 to 18 mpg
Modifications: Cummins engine swap, converted from automatic to manual transmission, LED headlight bulbs, all interior and exterior lights converted to LED, killer dowel pin delete, brakes converted to hydro boost
Owner says: “This has always been a great truck for me, but the old 7.3L IDI and automatic transmission were a bit underpowered for my liking, so they were removed and replaced with a 5.9L Cummins engine and five-speed manual transmission. I’d like to give a very special thanks to John Y for performing the Cummins swap, painting the cab, and helping with the rest of the truck. This truck wouldn’t be as good as it is without him.”
Photo 3/9   |   Readers Diesels 1989 Ford F 250


Year/Make/Model: ’89 Ford F-250
Owner: Dakota Byrd
Hometown: Moneta, Virginia
Engine: 7.3L IDI V-8
Transmission: ZF5 five-speed manual
Odometer: 320,000 miles on body (5,000 miles on engine)
Fuel Economy: 14 mpg
Modifications: Rebuilt ’93 IDI factory-turbocharged engine; R&D IDI Performance Stage 1 camshaft, Stage 1 injectors, and 90cc injection pump; Stage 1 drop-in BorgWarner S257 SX-E turbocharger; ARP cylinder-head studs; Comp Cams 910 valvesprings; Mishimoto intercooler; cold-air intake; 3-inch downpipe, 4-inch straight pipe, and 6-inch exhaust tip; leveling kit; 16x10 Ion Wheels; 305/70R16 Mickey Thompson Baja ATZ P3 tires; Kenwood radio; 3-gauge (EGT, boost, and voltage) A-pillar mount; custom lift pump with Caterpillar filters and a Holley Red Pump
Owner Says: “This truck was ordered by my dad’s best friend. I can remember riding in it in a car seat when I was little. It was parked in 2006 when he bought a new one. After it sat for four years, I acquired it (at 15 years old) as my first vehicle. I spent summers working long hours on a farm just to fix all the problems it had. I made the truck fairly reliable, and my dad and I worked together to paint it in time for me to drive it to my high school graduation. I later found a turbocharged ’93 engine that I started building into what it is now: loaded with all kinds of goodies. Even though the engine isn’t a Cummins, Duramax, or Power Stroke, I’m proud of what I have built with hard work and love of diesel power.”
Photo 4/9   |   Readers Diesels 2005 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD

Stormy LLY

Year/Make/Model: ’05 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD
Owner: Meredith Delavergne
Hometown: Holland, Michigan
Engine: 6.6L Duramax V-8
Transmission: Allison 1000 five-speed automatic
Odometer: 220,000 miles
Fuel Economy: 20 to 22 mpg
Modifications: S&B Filters cold-air intake, 3-inch downpipe, Flo-Pro Performance Exhaust 4-inch tubing, HSP Diesel hot- and cold-side pipes, PureFlow AirDog 4G 165-gph lift pump, Rough Country Suspension 6-inch lift kit, Cree LED lights mounted on a color-matched roof rack
Owner says: “I never thought I’d own a diesel this early, but when I was a senior in high school my dream truck rolled onto the lot of the dealership where I worked. My boyfriend suggested I buy it—and here I am now, loving the truck more and more. As some people say, ‘The build never stops.’”
Photo 5/9   |   Readers Diesels Mercedes Benz

Smokey the Panzer

Year/Make/Model: ’81 Mercedes-Benz 240D
Owner: Charles Lankford
Hometown: Raleigh, North Carolina
Engine: 3L OM617 I-5
Transmission: Four-speed manual
Odometer: 250,000 miles on chassis (180,000 miles on engine)
Fuel Economy: N/A
Modifications: Rollcage, Mercedes-Benz 300TD engine swap (non-intercooled), gutted interior, 15-inch rally tires, 15-inch Mercedes-Benz wheels, large spotlight-style automotive lights on front bumper, 300TD oil cooler, Tarheel Sports Car Club magnets, Suburu GPS
Owner’s friend Pete Guthrie says: “This car is normally a 24 Hours of Lemons competitor and has placed well in its class. We decided to make it a stage rally car in 2017. After lots of work, my dad, some friends, and I had it converted. It completed the Sandblast Rally Race on its first time out. We got lost and received a DQ for a segment but were able to pull it together, get back in the race, and snag a Fourth Place finish. The car is not a rocket ship, but it is tough as nails. My buddy wants to modify the high-pressure injection pump; it is similar to a Cummins P-pump. We also want to weld the open rear differential. The GPS is used to get accurate speed and location. The car is completely street legal and gets driven to Cars & Coffee events. I really enjoy reading Diesel Power magazine and have spoken to KJ Jones personally at Rudy’s Performance Parts Fall Truck Jam.”
Photo 6/9   |   Readers Diesels 2006 Dodge Ram 2500

Tres Cooper

Year/Make/Model: ’06 Dodge Ram 2500
Owner: Harold Cooper
Hometown: Cherokee, North Carolina
Engine: 5.9L Cummins I-6
Transmission: 48RE four-speed automatic
Odometer: 117,000 miles
Fuel Economy: 21 to 23 mpg
Modifications: MBRP Performance Exhaust 5-inch turbo-back exhaust, Edge Products CTS2 monitor with Mountain Power Performance five-position switch, Spectre cold-air intake, Rough Country Suspension lift kit, 35x12.50R17 Toyo Tires
Owner says: “This truck is my first diesel, and if I knew they were this good and fun to drive, I would have owned one years ago. For now, I will never own another vehicle.”
Photo 7/9   |   Readers Diesels 2006 Chevrolet Silverado


Year/Make/Model: ’06 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD
Owner: Henry Outhouse
Hometown: Columbia, Kentucky/Apopka, Florida
Engine: 6.6L Duramax V-8
Transmission: Allison six-speed automatic
Odometer: 785,000 miles
Fuel Economy: 8 to 12 mpg towing/19 to 25 mpg empty
Modifications: Duramaxtuner DSP2 switch with 100/80hp tunes and a turbocharger brake; PPE Dual Fueler kit; Amsoil bypass oil filter; Amsoil fluids; 40-gallon transfer tank; Kennedy Diesel lift pump; AutoMeter Competition Instruments boost pressure and pyrometer gauges; Edge Products CTS programmer; fifth-wheel, gooseneck, and bumper pull hitches; toolbox; Line-X’d bed; GPS unit for truckers; 265/75R16 Michelin LTX AT2 tires on stock wheels; Pioneer Electronics stereo with Bluetooth (steering wheel controls work)
Owner says: “I haul trailers weighing between 8,000 and 21,000 pounds around the country to dealers—mostly fifth-wheel RVs averaging 12,500 to 16,000 pounds. Red has never had a problem pulling any grade in the country with any load I’ve had or controlling it on the way down. I’ve owned this truck since new and see no reason to replace it. Most of the paint is original, and I keep it waxed. I’ve been through eight windshields so far.”
Photo 8/9   |   Readers Diesels Ram Black

Big Sexy

Year/Make/Model: ’12 Ram 2500
Owner: Julio Medina Sr.
Hometown: San Antonio, Texas
Engine: 6.7L Cummins I-6
Transmission: 68RFE six-speed automatic
Odometer: 67,000 miles
Fuel Economy: 13 mpg
Modifications: Bully Dog programmer, Rough Country Suspension 6-inch lift, Magnaflow dual-exhaust system, 37-inch Nitto Grappler tires, 17x9 KMC Wheels XD Series wheels, Recon LED headlights and taillights, Smittybilt M1 front and rear bumpers, 20,000-pound Smittybilt winch, automatic side steps
Owner says: “I’ve wanted a truck ever since I served in the Navy. I never thought I’d own one like this. I’m still working on it, with new rims and tires coming next.”
Photo 9/9   |   Readers Diesels International

Cummins Travelall

Year/Make/Model: ’71 International Travelall
Owner: Jesse and Cathy Ruhlman
Hometown: Bloomington, Minnesota
Engine: 5.9L Cummins I-6
Transmission: A518 four-speed automatic
Odometer: 10,000 miles
Fuel Economy: N/A
Modifications: Power windows, power door locks, remote start, keyless entry, dual air-conditioning and heat, power-step running boards, heated leather Suburban interior with third-row seating, first-generation Dodge Ram frame shortened 19 inches
Owner says: “The truck is fun to run around in and is daily driven in the summer months.”