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Lister Alpha LPA Series

The LPA series engine is the air cooled member of the Alpha family. Unlike the majority of earlier air cooled Lister models, the LPA was substantially outsold by the water cooled LPW/S and ceased production around 2002. Although used in a variety of equipment the LPA did not find the widespread use typical of earlier air cooled Listers. Unless its size and air cooling makes it particularly attractive, in terms of future parts availability it makes more sense to choose an LPW or LPWS for any new build project.A much more 'modern' and lighter unit than most of the Listers that came before, the Alpha series gives good service, but correct maintenance is important. In our experience they will not tolerate the same level of abuse as many earlier Lister engines.
Below are listed some useful tips on what to look for when ordering some of the more common pieces for your LPA. If you think we have missed something useful, or got something wrong, please email and let us know. We welcome any suggestions for improving the usefulness of this page.

Lister Alpha Series LPA Parts Availability:

Routine Service Items -- 100% availability. If ordering, please note the following first:

Oil Filter. There are several different sizes of oil filter used on the Alpha range. If you are able to see a part number on the existing filter (doesn't have to be a Lister number), that will do fine. If not, please advise diameter and depth of filter.

Fuel Filter. There are three patterns of fuel filter used on the Alpha range.
1. Small paper element type contained within a metal bowl; the bowl is secured by a single bolt from the bottom.
2. Metal body filter element, sandwiched between a filter head and lower bowl section, secured by a single central bolt from the top.

3, Spin on, throw away canister type.

Air Filter There are several different air filter sizes used on the Alpha series, primarily divided between the 'pancake' type filter element and cylindrical elements. If you can see a part number on the existing element, that will do fine. If not, for pancake types pleas advise outside diameter, inside diameter and height (of the elment, not the housing). For cylindrical types, diameter and length, plus inside diameter at each end of the element. Some heavy duty applications may have an inner and outer cylindrical element.

External Components --- Near 100% availability.

Alternator. Different suppliers, patterns and outputs over time. If you can't see any identifying name or numbers on it, a photo will help. The vast majority of UK engines use a flat, ribbed belt. Elsewhere one or two V belts may be used.

Drive Belts The majority of UK engines us flat ribbed drived belts. If you can't see an original number on the belt, please measure it as there are different lengths for different installations. For V belt applications, measure the internal length of the belt.

Starter Motor Just need to know how many cylinders. The only exceptions are if you require an insulated return unit, or have a 24 volt starter fitted.

Control Solenoids We would really like a photo as several types have been used over time. Don't forget to mention if your electrics are 24 volt.

Relays (solenoid, heater plug and protection device control) Here, the picture is more difficult. Over time there have been numerous alternative control systems used, with engine mounted relays and / or control box mounted relays. Before condemning a relay, first check that all connections are good; particularly at multiblock connectors in damp environments. If you do need a relay, please advise any numbers you can see on the defective piece and if it has more than the usual four terminals, a photo of the piece. Some early pieces are scarce and a degree of rewiring may be needed.

Heater Plug  No problem at all.

Fuel Injectors   No supply issues but there were modifications and supplier changes over time, so any numbers off your existing units are helpful. For optimal running we recommend replacing injectors in sets rather than have a mix of units from different suppliers.

Fuel Injection Pumps    No supply issues. Various changes of suppliers over time. Engine number is a must, plus a number off the existing part if you can see it.If you're not sure what you are doing with these pumps, the job is best left to a person with suitable experience. If the current available item is from a different manufacturer, we recommend fitting as a set. Note that removing, refitting and / or altering the orientation of the pump will affect both the injection timing and fuel supply balance between cylinders.

Fuel Lift Pump Pump suppliers changed over time and for early engines fitted with an original pump, some pipework modification may be required, as early pattern pumps are not to be had. If buying lift pumps online, be aware that some aftermarket units - although listed for the Alpha series - do not actually work. This is because they use the same two bolt mounting base common to many earlier Listers; problem is it is subtly modified on the LPW and the actuating stroke is also different.

Cooling Fan Becoming scarce and expensive. If you have issues with your existing unit we are happy to look at refurbishing it.

Gaskets and Joints 100% availabilty; sets or individually.

Internal Components

There is variable availability on some internal components peculiar to the LPA and cylinder heads are significantly scarce (although we do have them sometimes, so ask !). depending on exact specification Best advice by a mile if you are considering serious work is to ring for a chat to confirm the exact state of play at the time. Particularly important to check on piston size availability before committing to cylinder boring. Bottom end parts are generally common with the LPW and availability is not an issue.

Complete Engines
Unless you are exceptionally lucky, you are not going to find a new LPA. We sometimes have core units available for rebuild, or we may be able to rebuild your existing unit, but given the fluctuating spares situation we need to inspect any prospective rebuild before committing.

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Top Tip !!   All LPW/S engines have hydraulic tappets. When you remove the cylinder head, these fully expand. Depending on their condition and the state of the engine oil they may be in no hurry to contract again, so it is crucial when reassembling that all pistons are partway down their bore. This will allow any valves that are pushed open out of sequence by a sluggish tappet to open without impacting the piston. Allow around an hour, then check and see if they have settled down. Safest to turn the engine over a couple of times by hand to ensure no valve / piston contact.

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