TDR forum has the info as well. 94-98 appear to be the years involved.
It impacts units with the P1200 mechanical injection pump where a locating dowel pin falls from its insufficient press fit hole into the timing case. Disaster occurs when this pin attempts to pass through the timing gear train.
George & Cathy
08 Titanium 28E33SA, XM, Honda EU 3000is, Trimetric, RotoChocks, LP Reg. Mod, PD 9260 Upgrade, 2 Gal Accum., WiFiRanger GO/Mobile/SKY
04 Ram 3500 5.9 DRW, PAC PRXB E/B, 4" MBRP SS Exhaust, Gauges, Aux Tank/box, BrakeSmart, Cobra (19).
I installed the tab last summer and was glad I did as my pin was over halfway out.
I had to do a radiator replacement anyway and while I was in there I fixed that too. I wouldn't want to do it without removing the radiator because it would be very hard to get to, but it could be done.
Not every engine has a problem but it could be a catastrophic failure.
One outcome is it just falls into the oil pan and is never heard from again.
A second outcome is it hits the gears and is punched out the side of the front cover. Oil loss and some down time replacing the cover.
The third result is the BIG ONE, it jams in the gears, stops the valve train while the engine is still turning and makes a big mess out of the engine. New engine time.
Cummins is still in denial about this problem but I have witnessed it first hand.
Its not a insufficient press fit issue, what they did when they drilled the cover they ran the finish size all the way through. If they had just stopped short of going all the way through they would have had a positive stop automatically built in. In fact I think that is what they did on all the later ones.
I guess the question is "do you feel lucky"?
* This post was
edited 05/18/12 04:18pm by Yaj *
1996 HR Endeavor LE,Cummins 5.9 230hp, Allison 3060,
Front-Yamaha Enduro, Rear-Honda Helix Geeser Cruiser + 2 bikes,
22ft 1977 Cruiser in tow.
1 DW, 2 kids.
1 old dog, 1 fat cat.
I wasn't thinking this far ahead!
Yes, this is a true case of gambling, if you choose not to install this retaining tab. The resulting damage can range from the pin falling harmlessly through the very small area it would have to pass through and sitting in the oilpan to this same pin getting drawn into the rotating timing gears and causing them to jamb to a complete stop while the rest of the rotating mass continues. This means the valves are no longer in time with the crankshaft and will contact piston to valve(s) causing catastrophic damage to all of the above mentioned parts.
The gamble comes in, if you decide to ignore this timely warning and you do nothing. You might get lucky, the pin might stay in place, but if it doesn't chances are your diesel will be junk, wherever you are.
These are great little engines and well worth the investment to maintain and repair as needed.
http://www.turbodieselregister.com I have nothing to gain but the 5.9 is one of the best engines made but is has several weak spots depending on year made. If you sign up you I think $35 a year and travel with internet access to can look up on their cite when something goes wrong. Like when the "ABS" light comes on when you are in the middle of South Dakota. Wife look in owners manual, which says basically says don't drive you may kill yourself. Limped along should using emergency brake, got off freeway and ofcourse the gas station guy was more than willing to look at it for a cost and pull the codes and fix the problem. Got on TDR and found out real common problem for what I have. Ended up plugging back in ABS wire that got knocked loose from road trash, real common problem with 2000-2002 connections. There is also a following called NW Bombers that trick out their Diesels, which I have not. But they are full of knowledge and helpful. Monroe seems to be one of their main hide outs.
(To cheap to buy new)
1990 37 ft 5th wheel that hasn't moved since 1996 (our best home)
1997 33 ft trailer (winter home in much warmer climate)
2005 25 ft M/H (our "stand up B" for traveling)