Can You Pair Any Transmisson, and Engine Together?

Discussion in 'Ask An Owner Operator' started by Charmeiser, Oct 2, 2023.

  1. Charmeiser

    Charmeiser Bobtail Member

    Apr 29, 2023
    I've been thinking about what I want to do for a truck when I go O/O and buy and older model truck and put in an engine and transmission to my specs. However My mechanical knowledge is very rudimentary based only on the 03 pickup I kept running for half a decade.

    In short can I pair any transmisson to any engine.?
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  3. uncleal13

    uncleal13 Road Train Member

    Apr 9, 2009
    Humboldt, Sk
    Technically yes, practically not so much.
    As long as they conform to the same standard bolt patterns then you’re good.
    Understanding SAE Bellhousing and Flywheel Measurements
    Eaton 18 speed transmission is available in both SAE 1 and 2 bolt patterns. Most highway semi trucks are SAE 1.
  4. Bean Jr.

    Bean Jr. Road Train Member

    Mar 30, 2014
    Both Detroit and Volvo have proprietary auto shift transmissions. The computers wouldn't interface with other engines. If you were to have a manual, like an RTLO14613, when you need a replacement, you wouldn't need to specify which engine it was going behind.
  5. Last Call

    Last Call Road Train Member

    Mar 15, 2021
    To answer you question .. most likely Yes you can. Do you realize what this idiea might cost you
    1st you need to have a transmission with a torque rating high enough to handle the the ft lbs of torque the motor will produce .Your also going to spend some money in replacing things a person tends to over look when doing this in a older truck. Then you also have costs like getting a driveshaft fit... all these little things start to add up.And If you have limited mechanical ability now your goning to have labor involved and a fair amount of it
    I've done what your thinking about doing half a dozen times .. and I'am doing another truck now.I also do all the work myself and it is still costly
    If you don't mind sharing with us .. what kind of truck ,motor ,& transmission are you thinking about putting together ?
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 2, 2023
  6. 201

    201 Road Train Member

    Apr 16, 2014
    high plains colorado
    Well, yes, but in the past, there were so many factors to consider. Be advised, by saying "older truck", you may as well say, "skirt the regs", and you will for a while, but I bet ALL trucks will have to comply someday. Today, a one size seems to fit all, but back then, lower hp motors needed specific gearing to match the job. Gravel haulers needed much different equipment than road trucks. Older motors are dependable, but lack fuel mileage, if that's an issue. Need more info on what you want to do and where.
  7. Ridgeline

    Ridgeline Road Train Member

    Dec 18, 2011

    You can order any bell housing for any engine made in the last 25 years. So if you have an engine with a 0 or 00 belhousing and need a 1, then you can find them.
  8. SmallPackage

    SmallPackage Road Train Member

    Dec 20, 2019
    Marion Texas
    If you have a truck vintage were the computer doesn’t control every inch of what it does. Like ‘03 or older. Maybe 2010 or older you can put any non computer controlled trans behind any engine you want. It may not be the best spec to put a 5 speed without a brownie behind an engine instead of a 13 but you can. Like @Catmando said Just got to adjust the driveline to the proper length to bridge the new gap.
  9. wore out

    wore out Numbered Classic

    Jun 5, 2013
    Be sure you research not only model number but the ratio set which will be a letter usually after the model number. Not all 18, 13, 10 etc are the same. Many just throw a generic blanket and then are disappointed when they discover it’s either too slow or fast for what they are doing.

    I realize buying the absolute perfect truck used is an impossibility but buying what you want is cheaper and less heartburn than trying to make something what you want. Not that I have done either
  10. roundhouse

    roundhouse Road Train Member

    Jul 11, 2018
    There’s 13 speeds that 13th is a direct drive ,
    Some that 13th is a overdrive ,
    Some that 13th is a double overdrive etc

    it will be alot easier and cheaper to just find the truck that already has the engine trans combo you want . especially if
    You’re going to be paying a shop to do it .

    the radiator might be different the intercooler might be different etc etc

    if you want an older truck , that’s fine , once you get it right it will be reliable , without all the emission garbage and dozens of sensors on it messing up all the time , but it will use more fuel .
    Which will be balanced out by the lack of downtime waiting on sensors from
    China .

    but just decide what rig you want , what engine and trans and cab you like and cast a wide net and find it .
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