There are many old forklifts running around that are basically sound, but are finicky due to tired electrical and fuel systems. The old Beam and Century fuel systems served their purpose well, but when they get to the end of their road, it often makes better sense to replace them instead of repairing. Usually it can be converted to Impco components. Why?

beamreg

First, simplicity. Impco makes simple, reliable components that are easy to set up.

Second, price. An Impco Model J converter(regulator) is much cheaper to buy and maintain than equivalent products from Beam or Century. Even the upgraded version, the Cobra, is cheap.

So the big question is, how? Let’s walk through this.

1. Get it together. Go to a good forklift parts source like Intella Liftparts (Click here). You will need:
Model J converter or Cobra converter
vacuum or electric fuel lockoff
fittings and hoses to fit existing lines
-coolant and lpg-compatible thread sealant

2. Get ready. Remove the rad cap, shut off the LPG tank, and start the engine. Let it run until it stalls out, then disconnect the LPG hose from the tank. Next, drain the coolant system or to make it really easy, clamp off the lines with hose pliers. Disconnect the LPG lines from the regulator. Disconnect the vacuum and mixer hoses. Remove the old regulator and lockoff.
3. Get it on.
Find a suitable location to bolt the new regulator and lockoff in place of the old. Find the appropriate brass fittings/ adapters to fit the LPG supply line to the new lockoff and then to the new regulator. Route the mixer hose from the regulator to the mixer. If you are using a vacuum lockoff, attach the vacuum lines, otherwise connect the lockoff wiring. Now install the coolant lines. Note: I recommend use of a quality sealant on all coolant, LPG, and vacuum fittings. Make sure it is LPG-compatible, not all are.

cobramarkup
4. Get going. Visually confirm all lines/hoses/wiring is correct. Reconnect the LPG hose to the tank, and slowly turn the tank on. Check for leaks with Snoop or a similar product. Soapy water or washer fluid works ok also. If all is well, then fill the coolant system but keep the cap off. Now is an ideal time to pressure test for coolant leaks. Start the engine, and top up the radiator while the system “burps”. Then replace the cap and test operation. Use an exhaust analyzer to make sure the mixer is set up properly and make any required adjustments. Shut down and double check for leaks. Now get that forklift to work!

Idiot-proof disclaimer:
Of course, always make sure local emissions standards allow for modifications. Also, it is assumed you are dealing with a mechanically sound engine, with timing correct and ignition tuned up properly. If any of this disclaimer is news to you, you probably are not qualified to do this upgrade. Hire a professional!

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