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Caterpillar 3208 Solutions This sub-forum is hosted by Mike Hohnstein who has been at this kind of thing for 50+ years now, guess I'm addicted. The saga has been all about progressively larger shop space since then. Honestly, never wanted to get into the CAT 3208's that were originally considered to be a throwaway engine but that's all that works in a FC in my world. Same thing with my Ford toter, that came with a NA, too much effort to hang in a 6, so been at it with the CAT V-8 for 20 years now. In reality you can get excellent life out of a CAT 3208 if it's built correctly. Post your questions about the CAT 3208 engines here and Mike will try to help you out.

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  #1  
Old 07-13-2021
DFB052686's Avatar
DFB052686 DFB052686 is offline
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Default Oil leak on 87 FC

After a long time apart, the bird is getting a front hitch to replace the bent frame cross beam under the radiator. Think I’ve narrowed down the oil leak…

I pressure washed the underside a week ago, bus hadn’t moved since. Everything was dry and clean. Looks like the oil is leaking from the bell housing meeting line.

This amount is from driving 3 miles after airing up. Been sitting at the shop for an hour @pic time.

Pics are showing wrong, sorry. Can’t change them, Apple says I’ll deal with it later.
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-Dennis (direct email please! dennis@wanderlodgeowner.com)
Hesperia, California

1987 FC31 “A Rare Bird”
(300HP 3208TA/ZF)

Towables:
94 Dodge Ram 2500 4x4, 28’ Wells Cargo Express Wagon

Last edited by Dieselbird01; 07-25-2021 at 08:35 AM. Reason: Copy and rotate 2 pictures using my iPad :-)
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  #2  
Old 07-25-2021
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kunzelj kunzelj is offline
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Your coach is suffering the same oil leak that all of that age are. The rear main structure of the engine has a very small gasket with bolts that are usually loose. It's leaking from between the block and the main structure. You will have to remove the front axle, drop the transmission, remove the the flywheel and rear main structure to replace the gasket. There is no quick fix for it.
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1988 FC-35SB 300HP/ZF (2016-current)
1978 GMC Royale 26' (2015-2016)
1982 FC-33SB 250HP (2007-2009)
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  #3  
Old 07-25-2021
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Image shows the flange that is sealed with liquid gasket @ the factory, lot of potential leak points, housing bolts to engine block, rear main seal is in round bore, oil pan bolt below the block flange.
As the area on the bottom of the ops bell housing is dry @ 4 bolt access plate, l'm suspicious of the transmission.
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  #4  
Old 07-25-2021
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Jeff, I thought so as well. It leaks or otherwise uses about a qt in 200 miles. It’s near the top of my priority list now.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Hohnstein View Post
As the area on the bottom of the ops bell housing is dry @ 4 bolt access plate, l'm suspicious of the transmission.
If I pull the square access plate would it give me a better view? Or any possibility of tightening the normally loose bolts?

The trans has motor oil in it, golden, no smells, and level hasn’t changed in a year. Will be checking again shortly
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-Dennis (direct email please! dennis@wanderlodgeowner.com)
Hesperia, California

1987 FC31 “A Rare Bird”
(300HP 3208TA/ZF)

Towables:
94 Dodge Ram 2500 4x4, 28’ Wells Cargo Express Wagon
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  #5  
Old 07-25-2021
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Look @ at the flange, if that was the source it would leaking in front of the bell housing, the class 7 to class 8 adapter required for the ZF is the low spot, that's where the drip is showing.
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www.AutoTransDesign.com

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414 303 7079
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Old 07-25-2021
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On my 88FC it turned out to be the rear plate seal on the engine, not to be confused with a rear main seal. They dropped my front axle, removed the ZF and replaced the gasket on the rear engine plate seal. On mine it had blew out behind the starter, but they can break down and blow out anywhere. I was slinging oil at a rate of a quart per hundred miles.
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  #7  
Old 07-26-2021
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Mine blew out behind the starter as well, i cleaned the area with brake cleaner and sealed it with Toyota bond from the out side. I let it sit several days with the block heater on. Been 2 years no leak. I shouldn't even talk about it in fear of jinxing myself.
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  #8  
Old 01-18-2022
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Default Update:

Between the racor gauge line leaking a minuscule amount(that turned temporarily apocalyptic, but I digress) and the 3208 being overfull on oil(my dipstick lies!), and the (related?) crankcase vent being filthy/funky. It looks like there’s no actual oil leak between my 3208/ZF, yet, I hope, fingers crossed, knock on wood…
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-Dennis (direct email please! dennis@wanderlodgeowner.com)
Hesperia, California

1987 FC31 “A Rare Bird”
(300HP 3208TA/ZF)

Towables:
94 Dodge Ram 2500 4x4, 28’ Wells Cargo Express Wagon
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  #9  
Old 01-18-2022
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kunzelj View Post
Your coach is suffering the same oil leak that all of that age are. The rear main structure of the engine has a very small gasket with bolts that are usually loose. It's leaking from between the block and the main structure. You will have to remove the front axle, drop the transmission, remove the the flywheel and rear main structure to replace the gasket. There is no quick fix for it.
My blue box has a Invoicing for a major trans service to fix “Slow shifting in/out of reverse” to the tune of $20k around the turn of the millennium. I’m reasonably hoping that the normal leaking problems should have been addressed as they were in there anyway/trans was out. Think this a pipe dream?

Service included electronics and hard parts + major mech hours.
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-Dennis (direct email please! dennis@wanderlodgeowner.com)
Hesperia, California

1987 FC31 “A Rare Bird”
(300HP 3208TA/ZF)

Towables:
94 Dodge Ram 2500 4x4, 28’ Wells Cargo Express Wagon
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  #10  
Old 01-18-2022
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Sweet goodness, $20k is impressive
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