Ship's engineer M54A1 crash-course.

Waterkraft7

New member
26
0
0
Location
Pittsfield, NH
So I won a "gsa" 1969 M54A1 cargo truck in northern Maine described as "starts hard but runs" and I know nothing about these trucks other than I could use one to haul my timber. I'm putting every tool I can fit into my jeep, driving up there to get it started, loading my jeep on the bed, and limping it home @ 40 mph for 300 miles. At least that is the plan. I'll expect a lot of people on here will have plenty of golden opportunities to point out foolish mistakes, as I will probably be forced to document them while humbly asking for advice, but I'm going for it with a smile every mile I can get closer to home. If you live in Bangor or North, let me know and I'll keep you posted.
 

bikeman

Well-known member
Steel Soldiers Supporter
2,724
73
48
Location
Ft. Bragg, NC
you would seriously be better having a second guy to come with you. If nothing else, if you break down, getting the Jeep out to go hunt down parts/food/shelter could become a real chore, and in Winter in Maine... could be life threatening. Find a buddy, buy him some pizza and beer (when you're done) and have him follow/chase you.

That being said, download and read the TMs, look through other threads regarding these trucks for common parts failures (I don't have one so I haven't paid attention), and good luck.
 

Monkeyboyarmy

Well-known member
1,230
48
48
Location
Kingsville,Oh.
If that truck wasn't 800 miles away from me, I would have bid on it. You are going to love the Mack engine. If its cold out, you can use the flame intake heater if it works. If not, just a small snort of ether. It may have an air leak in the fuel system if they say it starts hard. There is a fuel filter near the front of the engine. I believe there are 2 different size filter elements. My trucks have also had primary filters under the drivers side fender. I would suggest bringing spare filters. Perhaps the castodian can get a picture or a filter number for the primary.
 

Monkeyboyarmy

Well-known member
1,230
48
48
Location
Kingsville,Oh.
BTW, if it runs good, it should do 54 mph empty, or 54 mph with the jeep in the back, or 54 mph with the jeep in the back and also towing a deuce.
 

NDT

Well-known member
Steel Soldiers Supporter
7,997
554
113
Location
Camp Wood/LC, TX
Not to be a party pooper, but GSA turn-ins from rural volunteer fire departments are usually not in any condition to take on a public road. Work up a Plan B that involves a trucker with a Landoll trailer.
 

Monkeyboyarmy

Well-known member
1,230
48
48
Location
Kingsville,Oh.
Yep. Shtuff happens. I lost a front wheel bearing on my first Mack recovery. After a day of repair, the filters started plugging up. The second Mack recovery was much better. I planned on towing the cucv back but found out the pintle hook was gone. Loaded the cucv in the back and drove home without a hitch (get it?) The adventure is half the fun.
 

Waterkraft7

New member
26
0
0
Location
Pittsfield, NH
This is all stuff I needed to hear. I'm looking into a low-boy on standby, sent out to a couple mechanical buddies who won't complain until there is no beer or potato chips, and also an insurance binder on the vehicle. I'm two weeks away from starting and I've downloaded the manual.
 

Waterkraft7

New member
26
0
0
Location
Pittsfield, NH
I'm planning on bringing a couple buddies, a generator, space heater, spare oil, filters, fuel etc. I have a cousin'n with a lowboy, but I'm too stubborn to call him unless I have absolutely no choice. I appreciate the concern and am taking all recommendations seriously.
 

Waterkraft7

New member
26
0
0
Location
Pittsfield, NH
Engine oil: 15w40 ?????
Gearoil????
I'm still waiting on engine confirmation for oil/fuel filters. With some suggestions I'll start a checklist of Items I should bring. Obvious ones like buckets, siphon hoses/funnels, fresh fuel, grease-gun. . . +any odd ones I wouldn't know are happily accepted.
 

patracy

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Steel Soldiers Supporter
13,737
922
113
Location
Buchanan, GA
Engine oil: 15w40 ?????
Gearoil????
I'm still waiting on engine confirmation for oil/fuel filters. With some suggestions I'll start a checklist of Items I should bring. Obvious ones like buckets, siphon hoses/funnels, fresh fuel, grease-gun. . . +any odd ones I wouldn't know are happily accepted.
The lube order will have all the fluids you'll need. (Quick and dirty, coolant, 15w40, gear oil, DOT 5, grease gun) Tools, you should get a lug wrench, jacks, spare tube, electrical wire, volt meter, basic hand tool set. Set of belts. Air chuck/hose/glandhand setup. Spare bulbs. Chain, rope, electrical tape. Hazard triangles, road flares, cell phone, charger, credit card....

That's most of the stuff I make sure I have.
 

AMGeneral

Well-known member
Steel Soldiers Supporter
2,286
28
48
Location
Morganton,NC
Your filter numbers are as follows(these are all WIX numbers,most any good parts house can cross them over)

Primary fuel (on frame under the drivers side fender)
(long filter housing) 33511
(short filter housing) 33080

Secondary fuel (mounted on the engine just above the injection pump)
33090


Oil filters
full flow 51133
bypass 51503


The 673 Mack is a brute,with 205hp and 611 ft/lbs tq in stock form,they can be turned up to the point that you are overpowering the 5 speed behind them.

Unlike the later Maxidyne engines,the 673 doesn't like to be lugged down around 1200 rpms,they run best between 1600 and 2000 rpms.

They will roll down the road at 2000 rpms all day and sometimes manage 6 to 7 mpg in a cargo truck.
 
Last edited:

Waterkraft7

New member
26
0
0
Location
Pittsfield, NH
This is encouraging, I'm familiar with all these tools, own most of them, and use them all regularly.
My wife has seen the auction charge on my account and she "laid and egg and hit the roof". I said stupid things, stupid things that can not be unsaid, like: "it probably won't cost more than the diesel to drive home, you can get another cat sweetheart, maybe a new battery but nothing else"
Needless to say, the rules of engagement have changed. I'll have the transport plates, but a lot of expensive back-up plans will be not be available. I have $350 cash in the bottom of my gun-safe, but the cookie jar is off limits and all automotive store purchases will be under heavy surveillance. I'll have some hang'n in the wind, but I'm used to being thrown on my wrenches.
As soon as regular business hours start tomorrow I'll be on the horn for confirmed engine make to start ordering belts/filters. I may have some questions on specific air parts and also . . . Any old steering/hydraulic fluid good?

Thankyou everyone. This is great and I feel like I've got a team. Already have a page of notes written down from this thread.
 

Waterkraft7

New member
26
0
0
Location
Pittsfield, NH
Excellent news. The truck has been in the care of a volunteer fire dept. For several years and is in good condition. It is the Mack Endt engine, and the current caretaker said I would not even need to bring batteries or fuel filters, just fuel since it has summer diesel in it. I will still bring fuel filters and am looking up belts, since that seemed like a good idea. Actually, I'll still bring most everything, especially grease, oil, etc. I've lined up an insurance binder, now I'm looking up links on "transport plates" K10greene, you might know the specific form for the onew I need. Hopefully this thread has a happy ending and serves as an example to all novices worth their grit to take the leap and buy a piece of steel.
 

fasttruck

Well-known member
1,069
183
63
Location
Mesa, AZ
Don't forget to check the power steering reservoir on the engine. This takes OE10 and if it seizes you will remember it. check drive shaft flange bolts on the shaft between transmission and transfer case for tightness. This shaft is the most troublesome on the truck.
 

ODFever

Madness Takes Its Toll...
Steel Soldiers Supporter
2,004
7
38
Location
Orlando, FL
Bringing the truck home is the easy part. My 2cents is that you implement as many 'damage control' procedures as you can prior to departing on your trip to pick up the truck. You'll need at least 1 dozen long stemmed red roses (they scream "I'm Sorry"), a card that says "I'm Sorry", a gift card to her favorite store, dinner at her favorite restaurant, a pedicure/manicure, time away from the kid(s) if applicable, etc.


My wife has seen the auction charge on my account and she "laid and egg and hit the roof". I said stupid things, stupid things that can not be unsaid, like: "it probably won't cost more than the diesel to drive home, you can get another cat sweetheart, maybe a new battery but nothing else"
Needless to say, the rules of engagement have changed. I'll have the transport plates, but a lot of expensive back-up plans will be not be available. I have $350 cash in the bottom of my gun-safe, but the cookie jar is off limits and all automotive store purchases will be under heavy surveillance. I'll have some hang'n in the wind, but I'm used to being thrown on my wrenches.
As soon as regular business hours start tomorrow I'll be on the horn for confirmed engine make to start ordering belts/filters. I may have some questions on specific air parts and also . . . Any old steering/hydraulic fluid good?
 
Top
AdBlock Detected

We get it, advertisements are annoying!

Sure, ad-blocking software does a great job at blocking ads, but it also blocks useful features of our website like our supporting vendors. Their ads help keep Steel Soldiers going. Please consider disabling your ad blockers for the site. Thanks!

I've Disabled AdBlock
No Thanks