This could be a never ending topic. I will try to keep it short. A diesel engine is any engine that runs on diesel, so there is no requirement to have a separate head for each cylinder. Diesels do not use spark plugs like a gasoline engine, instead they rely on very high compression ratios to create the heat needed to ignite the air/fuel mixture in the cylinder. For years the major diesel engine manufacturers in the US were Detroit Diesel, Cummins, and Caterpillar. A few truck manufacturers such as Mack and Volvo have offered their own engines as well as the other brands of engines for years. Recently Caterpillar has bowed out of the highway engine market due to tighter emission laws that they found difficult to meet. At the same time a few more of the truck manufacturers started marketing engines themselves. International came out with their Maxxforce engines, but they proved to be unreliable and they have since stopped offering the larger versions of this engine (for heavy duty highway trucks). Paccar (mother company of Peterbilt and Kenworth) now offers its own engine as well.
Detroit Diesel started as General Motor's diesel division many years ago, and then spun off into its own company. It is now European owned, but still very popular in trucks across the US.
In the 1960's, I would say Cummins was the most common diesel engines. Caterpillar didn't seem to become too interested in pushing the highway truck market until the 70's. There were some Detroits back then, but they were not as common as Cummins. There were some other brands running around back then, such as Buda, which no longer exist today.
Yup, it used to be all about length and weight. Cabovers were shorter and often times a little lighter. Cabovers turn sharper and are nice for getting around tight cities or into tight spots. Most people prefer the look of conventionals, and most say that they ride smoother because the longer frame allows for more flex, which absorbs some of the bumps. There have been some cabover log trucks, dump trucks, and car haulers around, but they are not very common.
They are taking orders for the K200 here: http://www.modelsandhobbies4u.com.au/catalogue/category/models/trucks.html It says delivery is delayed to January 2016. It is being advertised as $100 for the truck, $150 for the trailer. I am assuming those are in Australian dollars.
Many the manufacturers stopped offering COE's, and most of the drivers hated driving them, so the switch to conventionals was inevitable. Our last COE was a Freightliner Argosy and it was actually a really nice truck!
Yup, that's him. Kevin and his family have been friends with my family for many years. He bought 10 K100's from my family and repainted most of them blue. He still runs 5 of them today. Those are some of the trucks I remember as a little kid, so it is cool to still be able to see them.
Wow, I can't believe this is still going on. It seems that there are a lot of people who are out money. This seems to happen way too often in this hobby. Has anyone filed a complaint with the Federal Trades Commission? They would likely be the authority to help in this sort of a matter. https://www.ftccomplaintassistant.gov/#crnt&panel1-1 Legally all money should have been refunded a long time ago.