Sometimes they work, sometimes they don't. I personally wouldn't use a Diesel turbo.
In most cases, the turbo will either be too big or too small for the application. You will either run out of engine at 4000 RPM or you won't get any boost until 4000 RPM...
It is better to do as much research about your application as possible, then find a select group of turbos that fit your specs, engine size(ci), cfm, power range, etc.
Then if a diesel turbo ends up with the specs you need, then lucky you because they are very plentiful.