265 tires will fit and not rub with a very mild lift. On stock rims, they may fit fine as-is. I have 8" front wheels (narrower in the back since its a dually, and rear tires are 235s which are the same height as the 265s up front)
I raised my van about 1.5" in the front by installing some 4600 pounds springs, which is what used to come on the E450 (now its 5000). My OEM springs were pretty tired though, so if swapping out newer springs, the gain may not be quite as much. I also have airbags in the coils so I can still keep the same ride height when heavily loaded.
LSD is fine for use with the RSC system, although a little redundant. I don't remember where my LSD is from, but it's not Ford, and has a lot more pre-load than the Ford LSD.
Aluminess makes really nice racks. I'm more than happy with the ladder I bought from them. Their racks are lightweight, but $$$. If you want something steel instead, these guys have a good offering (http://www.truckrackinc.com/default.htm
. My safari rack was homebuilt from square tube and expanded metal flooring. Inexpensive, but heavy.
I have my spare on the rear door, using a bumper mounted swing away tire carrier (mine's from Reunel, Aluminess makes them too). I only carry one spare, but relocated it to improve ground clearance.