Oka... Faith lost and found

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30 Aug 2019 07:31 #1 by Paul Scherek
Paul Scherek created the topic: Oka... Faith lost and found
For the first 30,000 k's after building the camper, our Oka didn't miss a beat. We had some wonderful trips, brilliant vehicle.

Then, travelling across the country to WA we had our first major problem - just after visiting Robyn Wade the water pump flew apart. On the Perkins the water pump is within the timing cover, so the water just empties into the sump. Thus it is not okay just to keep topping up the water - the sump fills up! Robyn came to our rescue, and led us into Kalgoorlie and introduced us to an excellent Perkins mechanic who sorted it out... for nearly $4,000.

On the way home there was a big crunching noise from the rear - a rear shock mount had broken off, and jammed the shocker between the chassis and diff housing.

Later, on a trip to the Victorian high country a brake hose burst leaving us with no brakes. Managed a very nervous trip out using low range and engine braking. Hint - don't forget to lock your front hubs! I forgot, and nearly lost it.

On a trip to the annual Oka meet the fuel stop valve packed up - and despite having a lot of tools, nothing we had would get this thing out. For the only time, we had to get a rescue truck - thankfully we were near home. A hacksaw shrunk an open end spanner enough to get the stop valve out.

The poor old engine was still running perfectly, but was using a lot of oil. We bought another engine with a reconditioned fuel injector pump. The injector pump packed up on the way to Melbourne and we limped into town and had the pump overhauled... another $3,000.

We went for a camp one night, and hopped out to check the ground and noticed that the starter motor had literally failed apart - thankfully we had not turned the engine off, so headed back home.

Heading to another Oka meet, the alternator (a new Bosch alternator) packed up. The solar panels were just good enough to get us home, but we missed the meet.

This year we were to join some friends in other Okas on the Maddigan line. On the way to meet them, the alternator (with its new regulator) stopped working again, but came good after a few kilometres. We met our travellling companions, and set off. The speedo stopped working after a few more kilometres. The next morning to our dismay the fridge temperature measured 16 degrees. This was the final straw - we had two weeks worth of fresh and frozen food aboard to get us through the desert, and we lost faith in the Okas ability to get through the desert and out the other end. With great reluctance we abandoned the trip and sadly waved good bye to the others.

But.... two hours later I noted that the fridge temperature had dropped to 13 degrees, and then while I was looking at the display the temp dropped straight down to the usual two degrees. It was the bloody electronic thermometer at fault, not the fridge.

It was too late to chase the others, so we decided just to head North and chase some warm weather. We zig-zagged up to North Queensland, using the most deserted dirt roads possible, station access tracks and the likes. We crossed rivers, sand pits, and lots of corrugations. We found many magnificent camps beside beautiful rivers, all in the middle of nowhere. For 12,000 kilometres the Oka didn't miss a beat, and as always, the highlight of each day was hopping into the Oka for another days driving. We have always had good cars - Jaguars, Land Rovers, Mercedes, Saab, Peugot etc but nothing has ever been half as much pleasure to drive as the Oka. The suspension is incredible - I sincerely doubt if there is any other vehicle anywhere that can handle our outback roads as well as the Oka.

So, faith is restored, and whatever it takes to keep the Oka on the road it will get. These vehicles are just brilliant.

Happy travels, everyone,

Cheers, Paul and Michaela
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30 Aug 2019 10:18 #2 by Outback Jack
Outback Jack replied the topic: Oka... Faith lost and found
When people ask me about owning a OKA, this is my response.

OKA`s are not like a Landcruiser, Patrol etc etc. They require more regular maintenance and are a 4wd truck. This means getting underneath and around them more often.

However keep on most of the things you will go almost anywhere and be comfortable doing it. You wont have a overloaded vehicle or have the need to tow a trailer. Fuel Economy is similar if not better than a lot of 4wd`s.

OKA suspension hides things that are getting hammered as well. So some people sit on 100kms etc on corrugations. Not realising the damage getting done.

I also suggest to people if they are to travel in remote areas etc, is treat the vehicle a bit like an aircraft. If something has done 100k kms or 10 years old. Then consider replacing it before the trip. Water pumps, hoses, alternators etc come under this category. Keep old one as spare if needed.

Often you see people who have done water pumps, belts etc. They have been pottering around town for last several months, so nothing was under stress. Different story on a corrugated road or in the middle of Oz at 50 Degree C.

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02 Sep 2019 07:59 #3 by Ewart and Vivian Halford
Ewart and Vivian Halford replied the topic: Oka... Faith lost and found
Is the fuel stop valve the one David Ribbans has a an article on?
Is it worth taking a spare and we're do you get one and what tools are needed to get it out.

I was thinking about this last week.

Ewart oka 365
0428911147

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02 Sep 2019 16:21 - 02 Sep 2019 16:23 #4 by Holmz
Holmz replied the topic: Oka... Faith lost and found

Ewart and Vivian Halford wrote: Is the fuel stop valve the one David Ribbans has a an article on?
Is it worth taking a spare and we're do you get one and what tools are needed to get it out.

I was thinking about this last week.


Where is the article?
Is it different from the pollock valve?
Last Edit: 02 Sep 2019 16:23 by Holmz.

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02 Sep 2019 16:41 #5 by Peter and Sandra OKA 374
Peter and Sandra OKA 374 replied the topic: Oka... Faith lost and found
It is the fuel stop valve on the back of the VE injection pump, can be bought at most diesel repairers and online on ebay.
Make sure it is 12volt for the Oka

OKA 374 LT Van, converted to camper/motorhome,
400ah Lithiums, 680w solar, diesel cooking heating and HWS,
Cummins 6BT, Allison 6 speed auto, Nissan transfer.

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03 Sep 2019 04:53 #6 by Holmz
Holmz replied the topic: Oka... Faith lost and found

Peter and Sandra OKA 374 wrote: It is the fuel stop valve on the back of the VE injection pump, can be bought at most diesel repairers and online on ebay.
Make sure it is 12volt for the Oka


Is there an example eBay listing that has the proper part? Or a part #?

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03 Sep 2019 05:07 #7 by Peter and Sandra OKA 374
Peter and Sandra OKA 374 replied the topic: Oka... Faith lost and found

OKA 374 LT Van, converted to camper/motorhome,
400ah Lithiums, 680w solar, diesel cooking heating and HWS,
Cummins 6BT, Allison 6 speed auto, Nissan transfer.
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03 Sep 2019 07:09 #8 by Paul Scherek
Paul Scherek replied the topic: Oka... Faith lost and found

Ewart and Vivian Halford wrote: Is the fuel stop valve the one David Ribbans has a an article on?
Is it worth taking a spare and we're do you get one and what tools are needed to get it out.

I was thinking about this last week.


Ewart, it is removed with an open end spanner - but mine were all too long to fit in there. I chopped one in half with a hacksaw and then it was easy. There is a plunger that can be removed, disabling the cut-off and allowing engine to run. Easily stalled by letting out clutch in top gear with a hoof on the brake.
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03 Sep 2019 20:52 - 03 Sep 2019 20:53 #9 by Holmz
Holmz replied the topic: Oka... Faith lost and found

Peter and Sandra OKA 374 wrote:


Does the Perkins use the same thing?
(I thought Ewart also had a Perkins in his)
Last Edit: 03 Sep 2019 20:53 by Holmz.

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04 Sep 2019 04:39 #10 by Peter and Sandra OKA 374
Peter and Sandra OKA 374 replied the topic: Oka... Faith lost and found
It is a standard part for the VE injection pumps, there might be variations between models/number of engine cylinders as well as 12 and 24v versions.

OKA 374 LT Van, converted to camper/motorhome,
400ah Lithiums, 680w solar, diesel cooking heating and HWS,
Cummins 6BT, Allison 6 speed auto, Nissan transfer.

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04 Sep 2019 09:39 #11 by Holmz
Holmz replied the topic: Oka... Faith lost and found

Peter and Sandra OKA 374 wrote: It is a standard part for the VE injection pumps, there might be variations between models/number of engine cylinders as well as 12 and 24v versions.


If one should be carrying a spare, then one should probably have the right spare :whistle:

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06 Sep 2019 14:09 - 06 Sep 2019 14:15 #12 by Peter and Sandra OKA 374
Peter and Sandra OKA 374 replied the topic: Oka... Faith lost and found
Exactly so best to get a part number from a diesel place for the appropriate injection pump and your engine.
It is a Bosch part for the VE injection pump so not a Perkins or Cummins part as such.
This www.partsdeal.com.au/ place is good for lots of engine bits, they really know their stuff and are very helpful just using the online chat or on the phone.

OKA 374 LT Van, converted to camper/motorhome,
400ah Lithiums, 680w solar, diesel cooking heating and HWS,
Cummins 6BT, Allison 6 speed auto, Nissan transfer.
Last Edit: 06 Sep 2019 14:15 by Peter and Sandra OKA 374. Reason: addendum

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