I am one of those people running around with a 1.9 TDI vanagon conversion and is "flybywire". I used a later TDI ALH and was told it would not work. Rather than go into details, if you'd like to ask me some questions, you can email me directly at nospam at bocafed dot org. Even at 50 degrees, the engine cover is notched. It is not a problem for us. We sleep up top and use the back for storage. My guess is the reason no one is doing this type of conversion is because of the time and money to do one correctly. The transmission also needs to be regeared. Someone asked about the Overland/Eurospec conversion. I looked it over on the website and it does look more suited to the do it yourselfer. They don't mess with laying the engine over. They have a fabricated cross bar and hydraulic mounts. These do not appear to be "flybywire" engines, but mechanical. I am also using an air to air intercooler. Others are using air to water intercoolers that require an electric pump auxilary radiator and plumbing. While my Diesel Vanagon is no longer original it is the most awsome vehicle I have ever owned or driven.
My 1.6 on my '82 Westy just got fried and I'm looking at upgrading to the 1.9TD. From what I've read, this is a prretty straightforward swap and therefore about the easiest (if that word even applies) of the diesel swaps. Any advice would be greatly appreciated, including how to go about finding a 1.9TD. Thanks!
Talked with the owner of a local German engine service that SPECIALIZES in Vanaggon engine conversions. He said the easiest and least expensive swap would be a 1.9 non-turbo. Not as much oomph as the TD, but a lot simpler to install. He uses NEW engines (not rebuilds) from Germany. Engine + install = $4,000.
I've had my 1.9 NA for a little over a month now and love it. During the install, we needed to rebuild the transaxle and put in a new fuel tank. Runs like a dream! Much easier to cruise on the freeway at 55 and much less speed loss on hills. Well worth the time and $$$.
Did you have gear ratios changed at all in the transaxle rebuild? How did your mechanic do the intake & exhaust - use the parts from the original 1.6 or fabricate new?
No change in gear ratios. If I'd had the extra $$$ I would have opted for a 5-speed transaxle for less RPM at freeway speeds. The intake and exhaust from the 1.6 were used on the 1.9.
On British specification, VW Vanagons, with either the 1600 cm³ turbo-diesel engine (70 horsepower) or 2100 cm³ flat-four, water-cooled petrol engine (112 horsepower), the five-speed transaxles were factory-fitted as standard. Otherwise, they were a factory-fitted option, with all other water-cooled engines, from 1983 onward.
Nigel A. Skeet
Technical Editor, Transporter Talk magazine
Volkswagen Type 2 Owners' Club
Much modified & upgraded, British specification, 1973 VW "1600" Type 2, Westfalia Continental campervan, "Heinzwei"
I also have an '82 with the 1.9na 1Y engine. The conversion was done about 10 years ago in S Cal (long before I owned it). For some reason they chose to fabricate intake & exhaust systems that are very inferior to the original so I'm searching for the stock parts now. I installed a tach, and find that the engine is turning about 4,000 rpm at 60mph. The redline on this engine is 4,500 rpm, so I'm a little uncomfortable running long there (besides the oil temp soars at that speed). I'm considering a move to larger wheels/taller tires to get a little relief rather than the $$$ transmission options. Which shop did your conversion? Jon
I have a 1986 Vanagon Syncro and have replaced the waterboxer with a (TD) turbo 1.9. I purchased a bellhousing adaptor from Kennedy in California and also a special starter for the diesel. Problem is, I cannot get the starter to mount onto the bell housing because being a Syncro there is a shifting mechanism on the right top side of the transmission where the starter attaches. I've notified Kennedy of this problem but they were of no assistance saying simply "The starter should fit'.
Can anyone shed some light on this problem?
Will be attempting the 1.9 diesel swap this summer on my 1986 vw westfalia camper. Some interesting points that might make it a unique swap: The van is an automatic (3spd). I have obtained a "super flyer" ring and pinion set and will be rebuilding the automatic transmission and installing this at the same time. This, with a modified stall speed on the torque converter, should allow the diesel motor to be operated through the 3spd auto. The ring and pinion is a 3.27 ratio (as opposed to the 4.10 ratio which the 3spd auto originally came with) which results in a 60mph rpm of around 2900 or so, leaving room for higher highway speeds and also making 2nd gear into a highway passing gear. I also have 17" rims with slightly larger tires to further reduce rpms.
I have ordered an adaptor from Kennedy Engineering Products and also the high torque diesel starter. I have a "core" 1.9 AAZ TD motor out of a '95 Jetta which is being rebuilt. I still need to source the oil pan and engine mounts for this swap and also need to have a look at the fuel system as I might have to replace all or part of it.
As I said above the van was originally a 2.1 gasoline model with the 3spd auto. Motor burns oil and fuel injection is shot so the decision was made to conver to diesel rather than attempt to rebuild everything (including the fuel injection, for which parts are now "unobtainium".)
Will be starting on this swap as soon as the winter finally leaves here (I'm in Southern Ontario, Canada)