I went down to Portland to visit Quadvan yesterday. I met with Eddie Percic and he walked me through their factory and the conversion that they offer. He had two vans on the racks undergoing conversion and a new Pueblo Gold 08 arrived while I was there from the Ford dealer.
It was a useful and enjoyable visit. If there is an error in the technical representation below, it should sit with me since I didn't take notes at the time:-) Eddie was open and constructive with his suggestions even with options that he didn't offer.
In (my) summary, he puts a F-350 SuperDuty suspension on the bottom of the E-series vans.
The van that he used as the demo van was a RB Ford passenger van on a 4" lift with Bilstein shocks (front and rear) and a Roadmaster Active Suspension in the rear. The demo and the basic conversions include new Ford parts including a Dana 60 front Axel, steering control arms, track bars, ABS and brakes. This included the NV 271 Transfer Case with manual F-series shifter and manual hubs. His additions were the milled (or cut) bracketing that is required to get the F-series suspension to fit on an E-series body. Spacers are used in the back, putting the front and back wheels aligned with equal width.
FYI, he does nothing on the interior, he is only a suspension shop with a few other offerings like brushguards.
The demo van drove well, better than my expections. Unfortunately, I haven't done a lot of 4x4 van driving so I don't have much to compare. In describing it to my wife who wasn't there, I said it would be livable for a long road trip and not substantially harsher than our minivan. The damping seemed to be working as we went over railroad tracks and sway was minimal to acceptable through s-style turns (chicanes).
The van had a good/reasonable turning radius. We did a 360 turn within 2 lanes on a four lane road, he represented it as similar to the SMB 4x4 turning radius. That would seem correct given the conversations on this board.
As the product is almost entirely Ford, Warranty and Service would be through the standard Ford network where they have an OEM2 classification.
Many (most) of his conversions are government or commercial such as ambulances although he has done a number of end user van users as well. He described his opportunity as those that want an everyday drivable truck that doesn't beat them to death on the way to the 4x4 sections.
I view Quadvan as a smaller, customer focused shop where he will remember your name and has a clear commitment to customer sat and safety. I think the potential downside is resale since few people (as is evidenced by this thread) know of him.
I liked Eddie and the product they produce although I haven't made a decision yet. I'm off to SMB West next week to take a drive in their vans and see which is a better fit for our needs.
If you are in the market for a 4x4 suspension conversion, you may want to take at www.quadvan.com
No, I have no business interest or financial advantage in any vendors discussed above. Your mileage may vary, your needs may be different, your opinions may differ. In fact, my lovely and intelligent wife frequently disagrees with me.