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Old 11-21-2017, 06:57 PM   #11
MSD
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Congrats on the Van. One question why Advanced? I agree with Agile, but Adavaced??? Lots of conflicting reports with them… If it was me it would be Agile or Expovans and I'd probably go Expovans since I like bigger tires, but that's just me… Looking forward to see what you do...
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Old 11-26-2017, 08:01 AM   #12
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Thanks everyone for the input.

MSD, we were considering Quadvan and Agile, not Advance. Advance is only 30 miles away, but I have not heard a lot of good about their customer service.

So, in the past week we have scheduled and put down deposits for 4x4 and a CCV top. We are set for a mid-January 4x4 installation at Agile. They planned 4 weeks for the 4x4 and Aluminess bumper install. Once the Agile work is done, we will pick up the van on Friday and need to be in Colorado for a CCV top installation the following Monday.

We were a little surprised to get in both schedules that quickly, but very happy. Both companies have been very good to work with in quoting and scheduling.

There are still some details to work out on the gas tank after the 4x4 conversion. Initially we thought they would be able to install a 45 gallon Sprinter tank, but since we have the plastic tank, that option will not work. Jesus from Agile is looking into more options. I really don't want to end up with a cut down, ~30 gallon tank.

I am also worried about the 4 week timeline for the 4x4 work. We will need to schedule flights from SLC to San Diego for the delivery and drop-off at Agile. I also don't want to miss our date at CCV. That is something I will need to assess over the next few days.

Finally, thanks to Matt (Wanderlustbus) for meeting with us so we could look at his van and CCV top. He and his wife were very accommodating to allow us to check out his van.
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Old 11-26-2017, 08:21 AM   #13
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If your not planning on using the stock spare tire carrier area under the van just put a 55 gallon tank under there.
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Old 11-29-2017, 10:50 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jsweezy View Post
If your not planning on using the stock spare tire carrier area under the van just put a 55 gallon tank under there.


This is my plan, but I might actually keep the stock cut one in it too for a total capacity of around 85 gallons.
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Old 11-29-2017, 05:23 PM   #15
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I am going to reach out to Agile and see if I can get a 55 gallon rear tank installed.

The Work Begins

Yesterday I was scheduled for some minor surgery at 6 am. I sat at the surgery center for an hour until they decided there was a scheduling error and I needed to come back at 3 pm.

So, I went back home and spent the day working on the van. It worked out well as I got work done that I sure donít feel like doing now, after the surgery.

Like every van project the first step is to clean it out. My van was pretty clean inside, but had a cab partition and a cargo liner that needed to be removed.







The cab partition and cargo liner were easy to get out, except for the 32 - 1/4Ē steel rivets that were holding e-track on both sides of the cargo area. I had to grind the head off each rivet and punch out the rivet.

So now I have a EB cargo liner taking up room in the shop. Any forum member that can use it are free to have it. I live 30 miles from Salt Lake City. PM me if you want it, otherwise it will end up in the landfill.





Next comes sound deadening and insulation. I also need to get a couple of windows in.

What has worked well for floor insulation? Should I put FatMat or DynaMax as the first layer on the floor? Is there any value to fully covering the walls with the sound deadening material. It appears the recommendation is to cover 35% of the panels.

Thanks for the help.


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Old 11-29-2017, 07:32 PM   #16
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Congrats on getting all of the appointments set.
And I wish I was able to pick up those interior panels.... but I'm in Fl.
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Old 11-29-2017, 09:33 PM   #17
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I have no Idea what’s been said online about Advanced 4x4.
I can tell you that I had them convert a 1999 7.3 EB E-350 for me 12 or 13 years ago.
I do recall some minor frustration with the communication but what sticks out much more is the end product. I miss that van and the way it handed to this day. Wish I still had it.
Like allot of mechanics he’s a bit introverted and as a result could probably be better with P.R.
I wouldn’t think twice about having them do another conversion for me though.
IMO I think your overlooking a great resource that’s practically a stones throw away.
Just relaying my experience. I hope you’re happy with whichever vendor you go with.
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Old 11-29-2017, 11:22 PM   #18
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Dont throw those panels away! Those things are ridiculously hard to find or even order.
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Old 12-24-2017, 03:58 PM   #19
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Time to cut some holes.

When I started this thread, I never said it would be one of those speed builds. It will take a while, but I hope to keep the updates coming.


Between the holidays, some minor surgery, family things, work and sometimes it was too cold to go work on the van, but I finally found a Saturday to do some work.


It was time to make the big move of cutting holes in a perfectly fine wall of a van. I had bought 2 CRL windows from DK Hardware. They arrived about a week later. I started by laying out the cutout on the outside of the van.






Wait a minute, something does not look right.



I laid out the window centered between the body lines and parallel with the top of the van. Remember the old saying "measure twice, cut once"? Well that paid off as I relooked at the layout. Is my van the only one where the body lines are not parallel? On the passenger side the two body lines narrow by about 1.5" along the length of the van.


So what do I do? Align with the top line? Or with the bottom? Or split the difference. One thing I learned from doing home construction is making it look right is better than being right. So I chose to split the difference. The lines of the window are not parallel with either body line, but I think it looks good. My wife did not even notice it, until I pointed it out.






Looks better.



For some reason the driver slide body lines were parallel and I just centered the window.



With the outside laid out, I transferred the layout lines to inside the van. This did not have to be exact as I just need to cut the inside wall larger than the outside cut and leave room for a frame around the window. I thought it would good to warm up to cutting the van by starting on the inside.



Like many of you, I use these DYI projects as an excuse to buy more tools. For this job I needed a good way to cut the interior wall of the van. A jig saw would not work and an angle grinder would make a big mess and be hard to control. I ended up buying a Ingersoll Rand air saw of Amazon.



It is a great tool. It made the cutting easy if I kept a sharp blade. The air saw is small enough to maneuver the cut through the various geometry of the inside wall. I did use an angle grinder to cut the areas of the interior wall that were touching the exterior wall.





Once the inside was cut out, it was on to the cut that mattered. I put some masking tape to protect the paint and used a step bit to drill a starter hole. The cutout was made with the jigsaw. It was actually pretty easy. I just stayed inside the lines and made the cut going halfway around in both directions. I used tape to hold the waste piece while finishing the cut.







I started on the passenger side, and was so worried about cutting too much, I stayed too far inside the lines. It took 30-40 minutes with a file and test fitting before I was able to drop the window in place.







Now on to the driver side. This time I cut right at the line and the window dropped in place on the first try. I just used the file to clean up the sharp edges.






Looking through the van.



With the two holes cut, I used some white Rust Bullet for two coats on the edges of the cut metal. After it dried I popped the window in the hole and attached the interior frame. This was not too hard, but needed to be careful to avoid stripping the head of the screws out. Just use the right Phillips bit size and enough pressure. I screwed in the corners, and both sides of the split in the frame, then filled the in between screw holes.











This was not too hard of a job. I was worried about getting the layout right and getting a good cut. All it took was a good jigsaw and the air saw. And a couple of new blades for each.



Next step is some soundproofing in the cab area. I hope it will get warm enough for the adhesive to stick.















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Old 12-24-2017, 04:02 PM   #20
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That looks good, most of the time when installing windows I find they are aligned with the bottom body line as the top line tapers down like you noticed.
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