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Old 11-10-2009, 02:50 PM   #1
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Redesign E150 or buy new?



New to the forum..............I want to become a SMBer.

I own a '96 Ford E150 w/ 100,000 miles on it. I am the original owner and I had it customized in '96 with captains chairs, windows , ac, bench seat in back, that folds out, etc. (caravan style). It has served my family well through the years. It's in pretty good shape. Family's gone and I want to camp with the wife.
What do you guys think about having a penthouse top, gaucho bed, sink, just the basics.................have SMB gut it and build to suit. I own it......saves the cost of a new rig?

cruiky
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Old 11-10-2009, 03:07 PM   #2
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Re: Redesign E150 or buy new?

Two things to consider.

1) Make sure SMB will even install a penthouse on a '96. I don't know if the PH tops changed when Ford modified the body somewhat in '08 I believe.
2) I'd keep your rig if at all possible, but being an E150, I'd keep the interior additions on the light side to not overload the vehicle. Cabinets and structures add weight very quickly.


Herb
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Old 11-10-2009, 04:07 PM   #3
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Re: Redesign E150 or buy new?

Here's what SMB Indiana told me when I asked them about putting a penthouse on my 1999 Ford (which they did two weeks ago):
Quote:
We go back on the model year until 1992 which is the year they changed the style of the Ford van. So a 1999 will be fine.
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Old 11-10-2009, 04:23 PM   #4
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Re: Redesign E150 or buy new?

I would look real hard at the used vans. I think a top runs a little over 5K, and most are E350 or at least 250s, with those thoughts in mind a used might be a very good deal for you.
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Old 11-10-2009, 05:08 PM   #5
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Re: Redesign E150 or buy new?

I think a 150 is too light to make a real camper out of it. If all you want is the penthouse and removable seats, go for it. But if you want to add cabinets, water system, propane, stove, furnace, refrig, etc. no way will the van take the weight.

Figure out what you want and need in a conversion and talk to Sportsmobile and find out how much those things weigh.

Our SMB is an E350 and we only have a couple hundred pounds of capacity to spare.

Mike
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Old 11-10-2009, 08:48 PM   #6
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Re: Redesign E150 or buy new?

I second the weight concerns. I've got a 1995 E250 and wish I had gone for an E350.

Also, watch out for the Triton engines. Google "spark plug defect triton." Lots to read. At some point (recently) they fixed the problem but it knocked out about 10 years of vans for me. Lots of conflicting info out there. Some people have not problems. Others will never buy ford again.

Good luck.
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Old 11-11-2009, 07:53 PM   #7
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Re: Redesign E150 or buy new?

Thanks for the input folks. I'll call the factory and go from there. I enjoy the forum....and am anxious to hit the road!
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