Free 7 Day Trial RV GPS App RV Trip Planner Campground Reviews RV Maintenance Free 7 Day Trial ×
 


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 10-15-2012, 01:18 PM   #11
Senior Member
 
rockbender's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Bend, OR
Posts: 800
Re: '12 E250 RB 5.4L w/ SMB penthouse custom build

Congrats on the blank slate and the visions to follow! You can't beat having the van as home base for traveling with little ones. It makes everything so much easier and you'll be able to get your spring 'addition' out there involved in your activities before you know it.

Keep us updated with the progress!
__________________

__________________
Josh
2009 Express AWD, CCV Top & 50-ish home build. Daily driver/camper/kid hauler
rockbender is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-2012, 01:41 PM   #12
Senior Member
 
Ultrasport12's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Bay Area ,CA
Posts: 761
Re: '12 E250 RB 5.4L w/ SMB penthouse custom build

Jim,

Your van looks like a great place to start and you seem to have a really good idea what you want to do.

The one thing you will find is finding opening windows for the side and rear doors might be tough.
You can only get the one for the front side door from Ford new and its pricey. You have to get the whole window frame, glass and all to to do the job and the glass is different. It is also hard to find the right shade of tint (I think you have the very dark privacy glass) in a whole set of four. Maybe someone makes aftermarket windows for them but I have never found them. We have here on the forum had discussions about them from time to time.

On the fender flairs you only have one choice as far as I know and that it Bushwacker.

http://www.bushwacker.com/fender.asp?dh ... rch=Search

Good luck with your build and your dreams...

...Jamie
__________________

__________________
2008 Ford E-350 V-10 EB
Transformer Interior
U-Joint Off Road 4x4 kit in the garage
2004 F-350 Dana 60
Ultrasport12 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-2012, 09:26 PM   #13
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: La Verne, CA (Los Angeles area)
Posts: 92
Re: '12 E250 RB 5.4L w/ SMB penthouse custom build

Thanks for all the tips and info. It's all greatly appreciated!

Does anyone know of a good conversion company in SoCal? I got my first quote and I've got some serious sticker shock. I gotta do some more shopping. The converter needs to be fair, knowledgeable, and do quality work.

Thanks again
JimHefner is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2012, 05:32 AM   #14
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 1,770
Re: '12 E250 RB 5.4L w/ SMB penthouse custom build

Quote:
Originally Posted by JimHefner
Picked up the new van yesterday. 2012 E250 RB 5.4L with tow and power package (windows, locks, cruise).

Taking to Action Van in San Clemente end of this week for lift, shocks, steering stabilizer, wheels, tires, rear wheel spacers, and 4.10 limited slip.

Dont forget to Ping me when in town

bw
billwilson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2012, 09:44 AM   #15
Senior Member
 
dhally's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: SE Washington
Posts: 902
Garage
Re: '12 E250 RB 5.4L w/ SMB penthouse custom build

There's nothing like a new empty cargo van! Sorta like a blank slate.

We have a 5.4L with high top and the 3.73 axle works fine, even in headwinds. I would think with the penthouse top and 4.10 axle your van will be an animal.

I don't know any conversion shops in SoCal, but Van Specialties in Portland did our conversion. They do good work, and the cost was competitive with Sportsmobile.
__________________
---------------------
2009 E250 RB 5.4L "SilVan"
dhally is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-16-2012, 12:38 PM   #16
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 133
Re: '12 E250 RB 5.4L w/ SMB penthouse custom build

Jim -

I'm watching this thread with great interest as I'm in exactly the same boat...

I'm about to pull the trigger on a Sportsmobile - don't know yet if it'll be new or used.

I'm in Southern California too BTW - work at UC Irvine.

While I really really like 4x4 - I'm realizing that I probably really don't need it. The extra expense(s) might just not be worth it for the minimal use it would get. So a lifted van via Action Van is a strong consideration.

Same issue(s) with a diesel or even a V10. really really like 'em... but a 5.4 with proper gearing is plenty. Limited slip and maybe even rear lockers...

Please let me know when you're passing through Irvine. I'll buy the first round.

Thanks,
Steve W
SteveW is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-24-2012, 10:58 PM   #17
Junior Member
 
dante's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Orange County
Posts: 17
Re: '12 E250 RB 5.4L w/ SMB penthouse custom build

Jim,
Congratulation!

May I ask why you prefer Action Van over Camburg Engineering in Hunington Beach? Also, what were you quoted to convert the interior?
__________________
PBR Street Gang
dante is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-25-2012, 10:45 AM   #18
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 127
Re: '12 E250 RB 5.4L w/ SMB penthouse custom build

Quote:
Originally Posted by dhally
There's nothing like a new empty cargo van! Sorta like a blank slate.

We have a 5.4L with high top and the 3.73 axle works fine, even in headwinds. I would think with the penthouse top and 4.10 axle your van will be an animal.

I don't know any conversion shops in SoCal, but Van Specialties in Portland did our conversion. They do good work, and the cost was competitive with Sportsmobile.

What sort of gas mileage do you get with the V8 in your van? We are trying to decide between RB Sprinter and EB Ford, and if we go Ford, which engine? Would be 2wd van, not 4x4, likely with a modified 40-series interior and penthouse.

Bob
chromisdesigns is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2012, 08:01 AM   #19
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: La Verne, CA (Los Angeles area)
Posts: 92
Re: '12 E250 RB 5.4L w/ SMB penthouse custom build

My rig and I were in Fresno on Wed to have the penthouse installed. I'm totally regretting not getting the electric top. I didn't realize how much force it takes to put that thing up and down. My wife weighs very little and is also pregnant. There is no way she's putting it up or down. I presumed, wrongly, that the electric was just for convenience. I'm trying to work with SMB to get it switched out.

Dropped the van yesterday at Action Van for wheels, tires, lift, shocks, 4.10 LSD, steering stabilizer, fender flares, and hoop steps up front. I don't know a thing about Camburg. Action Van came to me with a few very good referrals. Larry over there knows just about everything about these vans, has been patient, helpful, competitive on pricing, and in general providing a very high level of service. I too will be recommending them.

I've no clue what sort of mileage I'm getting. I've been crazy busy trying to keep this project on schedule and I also figured there was no point checking mileage until the build was completed.

Next, week it's going to Jeff at RV Interiors for a 50 type floor plan. BTW, their prices are on par with SMBs. However, I'm going to be able to choose all the materials, appliances and their location, fasteners/hardware, and be intimately involved with every detail.
JimHefner is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2012, 08:57 AM   #20
Senior Member
 
BrianW's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Posts: 3,835
Re: '12 E250 RB 5.4L w/ SMB penthouse custom build

Quote:
Originally Posted by JimHefner
My rig and I were in Fresno on Wed to have the penthouse installed. I'm totally regretting not getting the electric top. I didn't realize how much force it takes to put that thing up and down.
It really shouldn't be that hard. My 5'2" wife can put ours up and down with no problem. Maybe the springs need to be adjusted.

Also, be sure you have a window or door open when putting the top up or down. It makes a huge difference in how easily the top goes up/down due to the volume of air that the PH top displaces.
__________________

BrianW is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3
Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by Sportsmobile SIP or any of its affiliates. This is an independent, unofficial site.


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 09:17 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
×