Here is quick guide to identify what series Detroit Diesel engine you own just by looking at your engine configuration.
The Detroit 53 series consists of two different types of engines:
The IL 53 series is mainly identified by the single cylinder head on the top of the engine while the V53 has two separate cylinder heads, one on each side coming out at an angle or a V.
The Detroit 71 series is comprised of:
These engines separate themselves from the 53 series mostly by the size of the engine. The 71 series engines can be much larger than the 53 series depending on how many cylinders the engine has.
There are obvious air box covers running along the side of the 71 Series engines. These covers look like small plates and the number of these plates may vary depending on how many cylinders the engine has.
There are 2 types of cylinder heads on the IL 71: a cast iron head which has the connecting bolts along the edge of the cover and the aluminum cylinder head which has the connecting bolts running down the center of the cover.
The Detroit 92 series is made up of the 6V92, 8V92, 12V92 and 16V92 and are strictly V engines. The 92 series and the V71 engines are almost identical in appearance.
Detroit Diesel V92 block
Detroit Diesel V71 block
The Detroit 149 Series is made up of the 8V149, 12V149, and the 16V149. This series of engines are the largest of any of the Detroit 2 cycle engines. The bare block alone is twice the size of any other block and the mere size of these engines makes them very distinctive from the 53, 71 and 92 Series engines.
The Series 60 is the most used and popular engine of the Detroit 4 cycle engine family. While the 2 cycle Detroit engines are strictly mechanical, the Series 60 4 cycle engine is electronically controlled, making it a much cleaner running engine. Series 60 engines are found in most large trucks that are on the road today.