Antique Engines and Old Iron
[Home] - [HELP] - [Forums] - [Articles] - [Photo Gallery] - [Groups] - [Chat] - [Classified Ads] - [Subscribe] - [Links] - [Books] - [Sponsors] - [eBay Tools]

Go Back   SmokStak > SmokStak® Support and Information > Smokstak Forums Meet and Greet
Forgot Password? Join Us!

Notices

Smokstak Forums Meet and Greet Welcoming Smokstakers New and Old, a place to say a bit about yourself and post a photo if you're really brave. If you have a technical question, please post it on one of our other boards.

Smokstak Forums Meet and Greet

1991 Winnebago Warrior (23EC) 454 chevy / 400 trans


this thread has 7 replies and has been viewed 1817 times

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 07-20-2014, 05:38:35 PM
WinnebagoWarrior WinnebagoWarrior is offline
Registered
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Spokane, Washington
Posts: 3
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Post 1991 Winnebago Warrior (23EC) 454 chevy / 400 trans

Not sure which to post this in (and I did look heheh), hope not doing a major no-no here.

Been looking for a site/group of people to pick their brains about some work I have to do to a motorhome we bought.

I was hurt and forced out of work and burned by old landlord (this guy was slick, hid behind corporations etc so when tried to sue ran out of time to legally take action before got through his maze of dummy corporations, addresses etc) so this unit is doubling as our home atm (2 adults, 3 kids dog & cat heheh) so vital to get it dialed in and 100% reliable on VERY tight budget. Older couple wife met on FB sold to us for very cheap to help us out (very honest and good people). It is a solid unit overall, no body damage, water damage, doesn't drop drip of any fluids etc. Places like Les Schwab etc that do free inspections says it looks well serviced/maintained. Everything was greased and looked great. Other than flat out being 23 yrs old looks like was very well maintained/protected

Main problems are:

1. Onan 4000w Emerald generator - Ran when seller stored motorhome last and said it had always fired right up. Now best I get is a few clicks (most times get nothing at all when push int/ext run switch. Terminal shows good power coming from battery, rv has over 1/4 tank, oil lvl is good.

2. Chevy 454, 400 trans- Engine runs 190-210 easy driving. Yet if idle, drive through a city, pull hill or put any kind of load on engine it creeps towards red fast before even getting into red engine just shuts down and temp gauge then pegs out (figure engine is hotter faster than temp gauge climbs). No spit, sputter, rumble, grumble, nothing, just silent death. Temp drops and starts up again. No liquids are leaking (even when HOT), fluids full, electric fan comes on and spins fast and good. Not seeing any collapsed hoses or anything. I did notice last time pulled hill and it got hot it smelled like engine was running very rich (gas could be smelled through doghouse). Engine temp climbs after shutoff as well (electric fan shuts off about 5 sec after kill engine. If leave ignition on acc fan runs but does little to help. Flat land it pulls great, power is there at pedal when needed to pass, shifts smooth up and down and at right RPMs, pedal depression etc.

Engine seems to be running very smooth, idles well, sounds great, revs great, very responsive etc. Great power until hit hill then seems almost like it is creating the power to pull but it just not getting to the wheels (reminded me of plugged fuel filter problem had on old Firebird years ago when tried to pull up Snoqualmie pass but fuel filter is good on this motorhome). Last few hills concerned me, weren't steep grades compared to mtn pass or anything but came very close to not making it, as it shifted down and began to try and pull harder less it pulled it seemed, to point that it began to glug and jerk (temp registered on gauge at time was 210-220). If hill had been 50 yards longer sure wouldn't have pulled it to top.

At one point on trip ran motorhome at night to get some juice to aux batteries (has 3 aux) and found out can't do that, overheats.

Engine and trans seem to run so smoothly on flatland would think they were out of fresh crate.

Any suggestions on best way to self diagnose would be greatly appreciated. Suffered broken neck/shoulder/arm 5 yrs ago so not a lot of strength (or stamina) so any "work smart not hard" tips welcome heheh.

Have few other odds and ends could use advice on when comes to this 1991 Winnebago Warrior but until find right forum leave it at the two that are really vital (eng overheating and gen).
Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 07-20-2014, 06:45:42 PM
Amigo Amigo is offline
Registered
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: St Johns, Antigua
Posts: 26
Thanks: 78
Thanked 12 Times in 8 Posts
Default Re: 1991 Winnebago Warrior (23EC) 454 chevy / 400 trans

I won't go into the Onan, but the 3 things I would check on that Chevy engine overheating - 1) check that the rad is clean and the tubes are not blocked. 2) check that the clutch fan, if equipped, is working. Some of these clutch fans are oil filled and the oil can leak out over time. 3) Check that the water pump is doing what it's supposed to do, pump coolant. Water pumps can die of old age without leaking water all over the place. Less than a year ago, I went through the same issue as you and found all 3 on my vehicle were at fault. Rad plugged, fan clutch not doing its job and water pump shot. Worked OK at highway speeds without air but in slow traffic or working hard it would boil in a New York minute.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 07-20-2014, 07:09:09 PM
pegasuspinto pegasuspinto is offline
Registered-III
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Floyd, AR, USA
Posts: 2,255
Thanks: 292
Thanked 1,039 Times in 682 Posts
Default Re: 1991 Winnebago Warrior (23EC) 454 chevy / 400 trans

I'd change the t-stat on general principals. Cheap, fast, easy. maybe opening late, maybe not opening far.

Are the electric fans stock or aftermarket? Many times electric fans do NOT have the flow required to keep an engine cool under load, is why you almost never see them on trucks or equipment. Motorhomes often have terrible airflow! Of course it's critical that the radiator has full flow and isn't plugged. And yes, sometimes the water pump has lost it's fins and can't make the flow to keep the engine cool anymore...

Make sure the catalysts/muffer flow freely, especially if they got replaced. Many cheap mufflers have a bad habit of collapsing internally.

Carb or fuel injected? I'd guess if it's carbed it is some kinda q-jet.
IMHO 210-220 is WAAY too hot to run very often. If the temp is spiraling out of control it's a sure sign something is wrong
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 07-23-2014, 04:17:29 PM
WinnebagoWarrior WinnebagoWarrior is offline
Registered
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Spokane, Washington
Posts: 3
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default Re: 1991 Winnebago Warrior (23EC) 454 chevy / 400 trans

Thanks for the posts, it's appreciated.

Replaced thermostat so far but then noticed two more tires too weather checked to move it much until $ for replacements. So just idle tested it so far, it does seem to hit 190 after about 5 minutes idling then hover there. Before it would just keep getting hotter. Didn't push it much further yet.

I did boil the old one and was actually bummed it opened but then noticed it didn't open more than maybe 1/8 maybe, maybe 1/4" but it is warped just enough to not close back up tight. Electric fan runs strong, hoses all open and in great shape so will test out the water pump next (after quick google search on best way to do so). I notice exhaust smell coming from middle area of chassis so will give the system a good looking over (glad you mentioned it, exhaust hadn't crossed my mind as possible contributing factor).

Did notice that air filter can on carb has no ducts on oval air intake part of the can. . Are they supposed to just take what air makes it in through the front cause from the look of it (firewall, rubber flaps that come down over top of radiator etc) not much air can be getting into the oval intake on can.

Under air filter (which looks pristine, good light through etc) looks like carb w/the 2 plastic squares (jets?) fed by couple wires (which was sure not to pinch when put cover back on. So thinking injected?
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 07-23-2014, 04:39:48 PM
pegasuspinto pegasuspinto is offline
Registered-III
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Floyd, AR, USA
Posts: 2,255
Thanks: 292
Thanked 1,039 Times in 682 Posts
Default Re: 1991 Winnebago Warrior (23EC) 454 chevy / 400 trans

Sounds like throttle body injection. Lucky you! It should have a check engine light somewhere, it should come on when the key is on then go out. There are not many sensors on that system so any check engine light is a concern-

There is plenty of air under the hood or anywhere-it's not lack of air but COOL air that is the main concern. If it had ducts once to a 'cool air intake' i'd get those replaced ASAP, and even if it didn't I would seriously consider finding a place to duct in cool air for the intake.

On my motorhome, it blew TWO tires before I got the clue and replaced them ALL. They looked fine but just cut loose all the sudden and the 'gator' held on long enough to cause all kinds of damage...just something to keep in mind.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 07-23-2014, 07:11:27 PM
WinnebagoWarrior WinnebagoWarrior is offline
Registered
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Spokane, Washington
Posts: 3
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default Re: 1991 Winnebago Warrior (23EC) 454 chevy / 400 trans

Service engine light on instrument panel (only time ever came on was when engine heated up after shut off when ignition on acc)

Yea replaced 2 bad tires in front when bought, then after drove it 150 miles or so noticed rear outer dually cracked (both around and vertical on sidewalls). Would love to do all new but has to be one at a time for now as can (235 85 16 impossible to find used this time of year). For now have to be happy with 4/6, crossing fingers inner tires have bit more life in them. Tires at 90% tread but weather fried sidewalls.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 07-23-2014, 07:43:56 PM
Lloyd W. Lloyd W. is offline
Registered
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Louisville, Ky.
Posts: 16
Thanks: 1
Thanked 12 Times in 9 Posts
Default Re: 1991 Winnebago Warrior (23EC) 454 chevy / 400 trans

All your symptoms point to retarded timing.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 07-23-2014, 08:40:44 PM
J.B. Castagnos J.B. Castagnos is offline
Registered-III
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: South Louisiana USA
Posts: 1,938
Thanks: 609
Thanked 2,526 Times in 740 Posts
Default Re: 1991 Winnebago Warrior (23EC) 454 chevy / 400 trans

Since it's fuel injected it should have an oxygen sensor, remove it and install a pressure gauge, 0 to 30 psi. An 18mm non fouler can be used to make an adapter, shouldn't be over 2 psi back pressure at 2000rpm. Blow the radiator fins out with compressed air, the air flow section, these are often plugged and cause overheating. Check fuel pressure, regular throttle body was 12 psi, I believe the big blocks use a little more, I can look it up tomorrow. Pressure would have to be checked under a load, easiest place to tap in is at the fuel filter.
Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

F o r u m Jump

Similar Threads Chosen at Random
Thread Thread Starter F o r u m Replies Last Post
Remove an Onan 5.0 BGA-3CR from Winnebago? gtj811 Onan Generators 18 10-27-2011 07:47:48 PM
Barn find old Chevy engine and trans no valve cover Matt1931 Antique Autos and Trucks 6 08-10-2010 11:58:47 PM
1991 Johnson grub54891 Antique Marine Engines and Outboard Motors 2 11-22-2008 09:20:55 AM
Red Devil and Winnebago Chief Don Siefker Antique Engine Archives 1 11-25-2004 11:05:55 AM


Use "Ctrl" mouse wheel to change screen size.
All times are GMT -4. The time now is 09:47:42 AM.

Smokstak and Enginads site search!


All use is subject to our TERMS OF SERVICE
SMOKSTAK® is a Registered Trade Mark - A Community of Antique Engine Enthusiasts
Copyright © 2000 - 2016 by Harry Matthews P.O. Box 5612 - Sarasota, FL 34277