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Old 11-19-2018, 03:14 PM   #1
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For sale: 2004 E350 EB SMB conversion hightop

We were thinking about selling in the spring to buy some land and I just bought an FJ40 project. On a trip a month ago, a cam bearing in the 6.0 shredded the low pressure oil pump and the motor is coming out on Monday a week from today. I won't know total damage until then.

Is it weird to maybe sell it pre repairs for a steep discount and let the new buyer figure how they want the motor put back in? Or have it shipped prior to the mechanic pulling the motor. Mechanic is thinking about $10k in repairs. Or fix it, and sell it down the road. It still runs but no turbo boost due to the oil system problem. I'd be happy to discuss over the phone.

Here's the brief details. If someone is serious, I'd be happy to list everything out. I've done a lot of work to it in the last two years of ownership (I've owned it for about 15,000 miles that were trouble free until now).

2004 E350 EB w/6.0 diesel, about 95,000 miles give or take. SMB 4x4 conversion, Atlas 2, ARB front and rear, 46 gal tank, propane heat and stove. 20 gal water (no hot), belly storage, Dynatrac front, D60 rear.

I've got receipts for all work I've had done in the last couple years.

Dynatrack ball joints.
New u-joints.
New custom springs all four corners by Boise Spring Works.
New Cooper Discoverer AT3s 285/75/16.
New axles shafts and bearings.
All fluids changed.
New ARB locker in rear. Front was tested during axle work and is great.
2 new Interstate 4D AGM batteries.
Starcool serviced and works great.
Wired for solar, just need to add panels on top.
Had custom sway bar made for front so no SMB disconnect now but it rides really well.
EGR probe, 5 Star tune and TS Livewire added. I think there's 3 tunes. I used the +40 hp econo tune. Never tried the others.
Aluminess spare tire holder on the back.
New ARE windows in the top.
Converted all interior lights to LED.

Here's a few things done prior to me buying it. New interior-carpet, front seat leather, and vinyl on the walk through benches that make the bed and trim.
ARP headstuds put in and EGR delete the year prior to me owning.

I've spoken with the original owner who had SMB build it. Kind of a neat story. Anyway, he owned it from '04 to about '12. It went to CO and I don't have history there. I bought it in '16 in Las Vegas.

Plenty more details I can list later. Just not sure if anyone would be interested in a deal like this. Now that we're getting the motor pulled out, I may keep it and put some more work into it unless someone wanted the project.

I was going to sell for $45k in the spring. If it didn't sell, I was going to continue to use it for awhile and continue to fix things as needed and maybe do a little different layout in the living quarters. The original SMB cabinetry could use an update. Original owner had it built so he could use bankers boxes as drawers and take them in and out to pack/unpack from trips.

Now I'm thinking $32k and you complete the motor work or have the mechanic do it and pay them. If this sounds like a terrible idea, I'm open to feedback. I'm wondering if someone would want the motor built the way they wanted it while it was out. It is a really solid platform, just needs the motor taken care of. I've driven it to MT, WA, OR, NM, WY, UT, CO, NV, and all over ID averaging 14.5 mpg. Sometime in the 13s up to 16.5 but I'm usually in the middle. Never had any trouble.

Van is in Boise, ID at the diesel shop and I have the title. I know this is kind of an odd deal. Might be good for someone with skills to pull the motor or wants it bulletproofed to their specs. Sorry, I can't grab a ton of pics readily as it is at the mechanics. I do have some on file I'll start posting.
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Old 11-19-2018, 05:20 PM   #2
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Obviously would like to see more photos (especially of the interior), but could be a great deal for someone. I purchased my Van the same way - blown engine.
The price you've stated seems very reasonable if the rest of the Van is in good condition.
***A well equipped Van with a NEW Motor is a great combination!
Good luck with the Sale.
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Old 11-19-2018, 07:02 PM   #3
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That is a conundrum (sorry, I couldn't resist). but I think you have a reasonable expectation of what you can get out of your rig given the circumstances.

Sorry to hear about your issues, but GLWS.


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Old 11-19-2018, 08:31 PM   #4
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Cute pup! Bummer about the grenade
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Old 11-20-2018, 06:26 AM   #5
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Thanks for the well wishes. I'm bummed but it's not the end of the world. I've still got my pickup, FZJ80, and a barn find FJ40 I'm just starting to dig into. Too many projects. If the van ends up staying in the fleet, I'll have a fresh 6.0 and most of the other big stuff done. My next projects on it would be pulling the microwave and redoing the kitchen space.

Here's more info on the van. My book of maintenance is in the van at the mechanic so doing this off the top of my head. Some info might be slightly off just like my brain.

Other maintenance:
-Replaced CO and propane alarms.
-New Warn hubs.
-Added foam and bungies to hold fly rods up top on one side.
-Cut reflectix to insulate and black out windows. It's a fairly ghetto job. If keeping, I'll sew covers. They do work to have lights on inside and still stealth camp.
-We don't use the rear benches much so there's 4" memory foam on it. I would eventually sew a cover for that but now just use a slip sheet over it.

More info:
-The original owner had Aluminess front and rear bumpers and a bunch of exterior lighting. The second owner put stock bumpers back on and removed the lights.
-Two fantastic fans in the back. It really gets the air moving.
-There is some velcro residue from prior owner in four spots by windshield.
-Onboard ARB compressor for lockers.
-Has the Ford idle controller and it works but I don't use it.
-Storage above driver cockpit and bed is a lot of space.
-Storage under bed is great for multiple pair of skis.


Things that I would do if keeping:
-Refinish fiberglass top. It's pretty dull.
-There is a back up cam hanging from an aluminum bar outback with the display on the visor. I'd redo this. It's old school and really grainy so I don't use it but it does work.
-New curtains. The curtains work but the cream crush velvet isn't my thing.
-Headliner in top is getting old.
-Thinking about a Webasto or something similar. We've taking it out down to 0* and the heater keeps up with the thermostat at 60* but batteries start drawing down after a couple days without plugging in or running the van. I think propane would last four days and have never run out but the diesel heater sounds cool.
-Also thinking of pulling the fridge and replacing with an ARB cooler style so I could move it between van and Landcruiser. Fridge definitely works though.
-Awning.

Here some pics.
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Old 11-20-2018, 06:35 AM   #6
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For fun, here's what it looked like on the original build. I've talked to the owner a couple times. I tracked him down through the old Yahoo Sportsmobile group. Really nice guy out of TX. On a side note, the van was a TX van most of it's life, then CO for a couple years, now ID for a couple years. With EGR gone, it still passed NV emissions when I bought it and ID emissions for two years now.

The original owner had a special needs son whose two favorite things were camping and bright colors so the dude had it built to take his son camping.

Middle owner or dealer who sold it to me had the interior refurbed in a more subdued color. Kind of wish he'd have left the original. It's definitely different.
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Old 11-20-2018, 06:38 AM   #7
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Pics just after refurb. It's had a couple years of wear by us but is in really good shape still.
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Old 11-20-2018, 06:41 AM   #8
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A few more pics. The propane hatch is rusty. I planned to pull it and either bead blast and paint or I have a new one in the box from SMB to install. I also have new SMB decals that would go with the van.
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Old 12-19-2018, 09:40 AM   #9
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Bump. Just got the van back from the mechanic so it's now for sale. $45,000. I have the title. 98,xxx miles and that will go up as we use it. Located in Boise, ID. Here's what the mechanic did:

Pulled the motor. New cam lifters and bearings, new LPOP, new HPOP, main seal, valve cover seal, head gasket. Checked turbo, injectors, oil pump and those were all good. 6 month warranty on the work. Runs great again.

I'll start updating with more pictures over the holidays and pull my maintenance logs.
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Old 01-08-2019, 06:44 PM   #10
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Got my maintenance book out and here's what's been done since I've owned it. I have the receipts. Miles in thousands.

-84-coolant flush, oil change, transfer fluid change, transmission fluid change, AC system repairs/charge, brake master bleed, reapolsetry, new leather, headliner in front, carpet (this was done at dealer then I bought it).
-86-four new Cooper Discoverer AT3s, 285/75/16, new Aluminess spare tire rack, LP and CO detectors.
-88-alignment, lube, oil, filter.
-Broke one of the top slider windows, SMB didn't have them. Nobody had a replacement. Had ARE pickup shell windows installed on both sides to match.
-92ish (didn't write down mileage)-new custom springs on all four corners from Boise Spring Works. Not sure of stock or SMB lifted height so I'm guessing these are a 4-5" lift. Rides awesome regardless. 315/75/16s would clear. I should have bought new tires after new springs.
-92-new ARB in rear diff, new rear axle shafts, bearings, new front bearings, Dynatrack upper and lower ball joints. Two new Interstate 4D AGM batteries underneath. New rear u-joint. Transfer case seal and service. Alignment. Syn oil change.
-95-SCT Livewire, three 5 star tunes (have only tried the econo tune which adds 40 hp). Vans are detuned so this doesn't get it up to stock pickup 6.0 hp but is a good amount of power on this van. EGT probe. Oil and coolant are always within 10 degrees except going down long grades. FICM at 49. Boost in good range. Oil leak which ended up being at pan drain plug gasket so another oil change.
-Custom front sway bar with Heims. Can't disconnect now but rides so much better. My thinking was if I need flex, I'd probably be taking my Landcruiser.
-96-Motor pulled, new cam lifters and bearings, new LPOP, new HPOP, main seal, valve cover, head gasket. Turbo, FICM, hoses, belts, oil pump, injectors were all good. It's running great. It's already got the ARP head studs and a fresh head gasket. Basically a new bulletproof minus a couple of the expensive Bulletproof parts.

$45,000. I'm going to post more pics so let me know if there is anything in particular you'd like to see. I would deliver in the western half of the US if you'd drop me at an airport after the deal. I'd need cash in hand for that though. Van is in Boise. If you want to deal remotely without looking at it, I'll take a bunch of photos of every imperfection that bugs me and send to you. I'm pretty OCD and there are some things cosmetically to sort out with this van.
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