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Old 05-04-2020, 11:00 AM   #1
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Big "Stinky" Build Thread 1992 7.3 Baja Pre-runner

My name is Drew and I am not new to building or re-building vans. Our little family lives in Seattle and our first project was an 1987 VW Syncro that we built from the ground up. I wish that I had documented that project, so now, on our second go-round, I am taking the time to document most of the process of what my 2-year-old daughter calls "the stinky van" referring to my clogged injectors and the amount of smoke it puts out as my wife so graciously follows me in a cloud of smoke from shop to shop.

This forum has helped me immensely and I draw a lot of inspiration from guys like Ref who I bumped into while on a surf trip in Baja earlier this year. What a cool build and cool family. So thanks for all the help, and thanks for the help in advance that I am sure I will need at some point!

The goal of this build from the very start was to create a second adventure-mobile that we can leave at different locations, is self-contained, and is a true pre-runner. Long travel, 2wd, with a locker and all the amenities to live comfortably.

Requirements:
True 2wd
Long Travel Suspension
Solar
Ability to sleep and keep carseats buckled at the same time
Racks to carry lots of surfboards
Fridge/Freezer

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Old 05-04-2020, 03:10 PM   #2
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All of your requirements should be easily accomplished with the possible exception of "long travel suspension" Depending on your definition of long travel, you might be looking at some expensive modifications. 17 to 20 inches of travel in a true pre-runner is not uncommon, but probably not realistic in a Ford van. Enough travel for some spirited driving through the desert is quite possible though with a set of quality shocks and progressive springs. I look forward to seeing how you accomplish your build. Also, I have to agree REF's build is pretty cool and amazingly well thought out.
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Old 05-05-2020, 06:47 AM   #3
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Big "Stinky" Build Thread 1992 7.3 Baja Pre-runner

Well golly guys.....My ears (or something else) were tingling.....
Hey Drew! (and Jeff), this should be interesting to follow, glad to help you out and spend your money any way I can.....
The 2 that come to mind are:

https://weldtecdesigns.com/product/ford-van-lift-kit/

Although this says itís for Ď97-Ď14....
https://camburg.com/shop/suspension/...rformance-kit/
Also a good read on injectors....
https://deadheaddiesel.com/7.3-powerstroke-injectors/
You can go re-maned or the Alliant injectors have a good rep
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Old 05-05-2020, 11:36 AM   #4
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I'm curious to see what you have in mind for your suspension as well. On my own van, I can tell you that 11"ish of travel and a single 2" Reservoir shock is not nearly enough for higher speeds through the rough... I can't even think about whoops at speed. Travel aside, it just needs more valving than a 2.0" can reliably handle, and this is speaking from an empty passenger van with a 5.4. Luckily, the concept is the same as any other I-beam truck running around the desert, so the potential is definitely there for big wheel travel numbers (20"+) if you're willing to drop the coin. I look forward to seeing where you go with this!
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Old 05-05-2020, 12:11 PM   #5
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YES! So thankful for the help and community here. You back from Baja yet Rick?

I ordered the Weldtec Baja Grocery Getter kit as Weldtec has a deal going right now that saved some cash. I also was pretty excited to find that I have a C2 rear end and from what I can tell that may be a limited slip. Still unsure the gearing as there is no ID anything on the rear end. It looks like maybe its a 4:10LS. Have not been able to locate any date info for the different C2 rear end versions.

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Old 05-05-2020, 12:58 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by REF View Post
Well golly guys.....My ears (or something else) were tingling.....
Hey Drew! (and Jeff), this should be interesting to follow, glad to help you out and spend your money any way I can.....
The 2 that come to mind are:

https://weldtecdesigns.com/product/ford-van-lift-kit/

Although this says itís for Ď97-Ď14....
https://camburg.com/shop/suspension/...rformance-kit/
Also a good read on injectors....
https://deadheaddiesel.com/7.3-powerstroke-injectors/
You can go re-maned or the Alliant injectors have a good rep
My 7.3 is IDI not Powerstroke from my understanding. Can I run the same injectors?
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Old 05-05-2020, 01:00 PM   #7
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To determine the rear end ratio, raise the rear, turn one wheel two times and count the number of turns of the driveshaft. 3.5 turns = 3.5/1, 4.25 turns = 4.25/1
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Old 05-05-2020, 01:08 PM   #8
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I can't wait to see what you do with this thing. First, you need to post more pics. Second, tell us what motor you have and how you are going to strap everything down in the back on the washboards.
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Old 05-05-2020, 01:59 PM   #9
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Purchase Pictures

Here are a few photos of the van once I got it running. It is a 7.3IDI with an E40D Trans. I replaced the oil cooler and water pump as well as one freeze plug. Still starts hard and really smokey. Thinking injectors and glow plugs.





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Old 05-05-2020, 02:03 PM   #10
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Whats the interior like? I found a van like that a year or so ago. Bought it pretty cheap and sold it for a few thousand more after a hard scrubbing. Had a 5.4 in it though, no diesel.
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