The Hummer Blog

Predator Motorsports Blog

Meet the guys at Predator

Jeff, Paul, Sen, Rusty, Chito, and Randy work diligently to complete the conversions, upgrades and general maintenance on vehicles. At any given time we have 5 or more Hummers in the shop for conversions. The guys are the very best at what they do and take great pride in their work. It may seem like your job isn’t going as fast as you would like, but they are the best and take satisfaction in knowing that the job is done right.

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An Afternoon at K1

All the crew at Predator got treated to an afternoon at K1, great way for the guys to blow off some steam and come together. The race was on and the everyone had a great time. Thanks Ryan, nothing better then pizza and racing!

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Meet the guys in Fabrication

Eric, Josh, Ken, Curtis and Julio are our fabricators. They are amazing at what they can do. Not only do they fabricate the products that Predator is known for but if a customer has something different or Ryan comes up with a new idea, they are the people that turn the idea into the end product.

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Meet the Guys in Shipping

Garrett and Joe both work in our Shipping Dept. They make sure that the products you order are shipped to you as fast as they are available. Our goal is to to complete your order as fast as possible. Garrett does double duty also Purchasing Agent.

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Franco Skilan’s Testimonial

3/12/2012

Dear Ryan and Crew,

I just wanted to drop a note to you to thank you all for the incredible job you did restoring and re-engineering my 1992 4DHT Limited Edition Hummer. Having owned a few Hummers over the years, this particular vehicle which I have owned since 2002, soon became my favorite and most treasured off-road truck. As you know, 1992 was the first year of Hummer production and there were no AMG dealerships yet established, so one could only purchase trucks like this directly from the AM General Factory. The 1992 and 1993 models were also the most Spartan and “Humvee-like” Hummers ever produced. Creature comforts and high tech interiors took a back seat to pure off-road and utilitarian uses. Along these lines, the trucks also had a few drawback that had to be endured. A very mild 6.2 normally aspirated 150HP Detroit Diesel engine was fitted in the truck, mated to a 3-speed 3L80 transmission. Top recommended sustained speed was 55mph. The resulting on-road (and sometimes) off-road manners left a lot to be desired with the general public, so AMG answered consumer demands with upgraded Engine, Drivetrain and interior enhancements that made the trucks more enjoyable in the real world in the years that followed.

For years I had been contemplating upgrading this trucks performance to a more modern standard, while trying to maintain this particular vehicles’ original look and integrity as “The worlds’ most serious 4X4”. As you can imagine, I was not going to trust just any company to work on my Hummer. My extensive research on the best course of action and the best people in the country to work on my truck led me to Predator Motorsports! After lengthy and informative meetings with Ryan Wilson, CEO and President of Predator, and Jeff Aguire, Lead Mechanic on the project, a plan was set into action.

The goal was clear… I wanted more power and drive-ability, while increasing off-road capability and reliability. We would start with a Cummins 6BT 12 Valve mechanical engine with Custom Aluminum Intercoolers and Radiators. This was the obvious choice for a durable and simple high torque engine. Next came the 5-speed Allison transmission, electronically controlled to offer the best overall gear ratios for both the on and off road reliability that I was looking for. An MP2225 Transfer Case was also chosen for its’ beefier components and water cooled design that is used in up-armored HMMWV’s in high heat/desert applications. We decided on a body off rebuild which would eventually include many things that a 20 year old, heavily off-roaded truck would need to address. All new A-arm Bushings are installed. All new custom Cepek designed Adjustable shocks and 17″ Rims mounted with 40″ Good Year Wrangler MTR tires. All new Alpha Style Helical Geared Hubs. A new 12K Driveline is fitted including all new same size Halfshafts (thanks to the Predator custom made front differential centering kit), all new custom designed Driveshafts and CV joints, all new Eaton E-Locker Differentials, and a new 12″ Brake

system. An AGR Rock Ram Steering system is installed to handle the larger Tires. The CTIS system is completely restored using all new steel braided lines replacing the old and cracking rubber lines throughout the truck. A myriad of other small details are attended to throughout the restoration process that included custom designed wiring and CNC machined components almost everywhere throughout the vehicle.

On the interior, many new switches and custom gauges are installed to monitor Engine RPM’S (early version Hummers never had tachometers), Exhaust EGT’s, and Transmission temperatures. Not to be left out are a few creature comforts that are missing on the early Hummers… all new Power Windows are installed, and all new Power Door Locks mated to a remote-start Alarm System are installed. To complete the package, all new custom Leather Seat covers with Tan stitching are installed ( to match the original Tan Desert Storm paint on the exterior). Even with all the extra interior appointments, the truck remains true to the original theme of form through function.

The result? In a single word…. AWESOME! The truck has truly been transformed. Arguably it now has the best Diesel engine ever produced (Cummins) producing 325+ Horsepower and well over 450 ft. lbs of Torque(more than double the old 6.2L motor) . It has the one of the best 5-speed transmissions ever designed (Allison). Upgraded and heavy duty Drivetrain components are installed throughout the truck, and the interior is upgraded yet understated. Both on-road and off-road manners have been turned into an effortless experience utilizing the best components and engineering Predator has to offer.

Would I do it all again? Absolutely YES! Would I change anything? We did in fact change many build and design parameters throughout the entire process. This was one of the most confidence building aspects of the entire process…Predator won’t settle for “just good enough”. If a design or component did not meet their expectation, it did not end up in the final version of my truck.

Again, thank you to everyone at Predator for your dedication and hard work. It is obvious you all take great pride and care working on one of America’s most iconic vehicles ever produced, the AMG Hummer, and I could not be any happier with the final result!

Regards,

Franco Skilan

 

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Break Time at Predator

                                                                         The Predator Crew enjoys their break time now that we have a Basketball Hoop. The guys can shoot hoops or play Hacky Sack.   Even Ryan enjoys taking a break.

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Hummer Club Run

 

 

If you missed the Hummer Club run Feb. 24 thru the 26th, you missed out on a lot of fun.

Predator Motorsports had some of their Off Road Tactical Team available to give instructions and guide the participants. They were able to learn a few things that they didn’t realize they could do. We want to Thank everyone that participated, on behalf of the Wounded Warrior foundation. We would also like to Thank Borrrego and the Anza Borrego State for all their hospitality.

 

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Tech Notes From Dan: FSD / PMD

In 1994 GM came out with the 6.5 turbo diesel engine. This is roughly the same engine used in the Hummer (H1) from 1996 to 2005. Here at Predator we get a lot of calls from people that are having trouble with their engines. The main complaints seems to be a rough running engine, will not start after shutting down, dies as they are driving along, etc. The list goes on and on. Usually we ask if they are getting a check engine light and if so, do they know what code is coming up (this usually takes a Tech2 Scanner to analyze). If you go to a dealer and he gets a code of 1216, 1217 or 1218, they will probaby tell you that you have a bad fuel injection pump and you need to replace it. This is because in the repair manual, these codes relate to the injection pump. In 99% of the time you have a good pump and a bad Fuel System Driver (FSD), also known as a Pump Mounted Drive (PMD) which is mounted directly on the side of the injection pump. There is no single code to differentiate between a bad fuel injection pump or a bad PMD. If you elect to have the injection pump replaced, this will usually fix the problem because in the overhaul of the pump a new PMD is installed. This will usually cost around $4,000.00. The real problem is in the design.

GM decided to mount the PMD on the side of the injection pump where it would be cooled by the fuel going into the injection pump. It sounds good and works most of the time in the pick up truck lineup however in the Hummer, the engine lacks airflow over the top of the engine. Additionally, the PMD unit is heat soaked as soon as the engine is turned off . So by changing the injection pump you are still faced with the same design flaw. It isn’t “IF” it fails but “WHEN” it fails. Several years ago I was in Indiana at a Hummer home coming and got to talk to one of AMG instructors who told me he always carries a spare PMD in his pocket when he goes off-roading. He said it has saved him many times. The real solution on the market is a PMD Isolator Kit which relocates the PMD onto a heat sink. There are a number of units on the market that accomplish this however most all are designed for the GM Pick Up Truck and don’t actually relocate it away from the engine. This is ok for GM Trucks however with our lack of airflow across the engine, it is a serious problem for the heat sink to disipate the heat it absorbs. When we began R&D for a solution for the H1 Hummer, we looked at a number of options before coming up with our system. We did not like the cooling fins because they tend to clog up in dirt and mud. Also we see the same problem occurring if you mount the new PMD inside the engine bay.

The solution for us was to relocate the PMD onto a flat plate heat sink and relocate it in the fender well area, far away from the engine. This solution has proved to add many years of trouble free service to the H1 lineup. If you suspect a bad PMD, shoot us a call and we will be happy to help you diagnose the problem over the phone.

Dan Wilson

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6 months old at still growing

6 months old at still growing, we shared pictures of Mizu with you a few months back…thought you might like to see him a 6 months. He is about 87 lbs now, but look at the paws! Mizu is so much fun to have around and such a love. We will continue to update you on Mizu in the future, stay turned.

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