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Old 08-21-2019, 10:01 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carringb View Post
Having a catalogue listing doesn't mean its available. I've had to replace these on 2 customer vans, my Mopar supplier was Lithia, who has the largest Chrylser parts inventory in the country. They struck out, but fortunately we were able to pull units from salvaged vans. But that supply line is nearly extinct. There's just not enough on the road for any of the large salvage companies with inventories cataloged, to justify keeping those vans on hand.

The 2003 Ram van 2500 came with the the 5.2L rated at 225 horsepower. Torque was rated at 206 ft-lbs @ 3,400 RPM. That era E-series 5.4L was rated at 255 horsepower and 350 ft-lbs at 2,500 RPM.

Even the premium Dodge 5.9L V8 was only rated at 255 hp and 335 ft-lbs of torque, while Ford offered the V10 rated at 305 hp and 420 ft. lbs.
Remember when someone said carringb had a lack of information...
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Old 08-21-2019, 10:06 AM   #12
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Another issue with Dodge vans is the steering slop....wear seems to be rapid, leading to the steering hunt down the road....Check it out when test driving.
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Old 08-21-2019, 05:05 PM   #13
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Interesting info. Thanks for the replies.
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Old 08-21-2019, 07:37 PM   #14
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Fords are true body on frame...look underneath an E250 and E350 and see the size of the frame on them. I wouldn't build a hard core off road rig on anything else.

However, the Chevys and Dodges are fine for what 95% of camper vanners do and are at a great entry level price point.

The last reason that nobody likes to mention is the styling. The 1992 up E series is almost universally considered attractive and tough looking. The Chevy Express just looks like an inflated Astro, and the Dodge, well, I refer to them as the Stodgy Dodge. Same body since 1971 with modern noses tacked on until 2003.

That said, the Dodge in the original post is perfect first SMB! Thanks for posting it.
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Old 08-21-2019, 08:25 PM   #15
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I love my Dodge. I wouldn’t trade her for the world
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Old 08-22-2019, 12:30 PM   #16
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Ironically the "stodgy" design of the Dodges is what made them so popular with Class B and Class C manufacturers. They never had to change tooling!


Pre-1992 facelift the Econolines hadn't really changed since 1972 or so either...my 1990 still has the old square analog gauges. There was no place for the CHECK ENGINE light so they stuck it down where the diesel WAIT TO START light was. It's pretty hilarious. The controls are pure 1970s, high-beam switch on the floor, wipers on the dash, the only things controlled by steering column stalks are the turn signals and the transmission.
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Old 08-22-2019, 04:23 PM   #17
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Ahhh, the good 'ol daze. When life was simpler.
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Old 08-22-2019, 08:13 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by carringb View Post
SMB had a garageable penthouse top option for the 2008+ E150 with the 8,500 GVWR. Prior to that, the 7,000# GVWR E150 was garageable with any penthouse top.
You might imagine my strong irritation in finding this info out from you...at this late date. For years I’ve shopped for another SMB, one that I could park in my garage, never finding quite the right one but limiting myself to looking for only the Dodges because that’s what I’d been told was the only SMB that was garageable.

As I now think of all of the nice Ford vans I passed over that might have worked for me...all the years I was SMB-less, it makes me want to go find the guy who gave me such bad info and punch him out (but really, we’re both way too old for that kind of behavior now, sigh).

While I’ve moved on to a Tiger for my camping needs, I’d still love to find a Ford SMB that would work for shorter, more urban trips for me. So, are you sure of the years and models you referred to here earlier? Anyone? Let me know please. Thx.

I guess the tough part now is going to be to find an E-150.
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Old 08-22-2019, 10:26 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by gbail View Post
You might imagine my strong irritation in finding this info out from you...at this late date. For years I’ve shopped for another SMB, one that I could park in my garage, never finding quite the right one but limiting myself to looking for only the Dodges because that’s what I’d been told was the only SMB that was garageable.

As I now think of all of the nice Ford vans I passed over that might have worked for me...all the years I was SMB-less, it makes me want to go find the guy who gave me such bad info and punch him out (but really, we’re both way too old for that kind of behavior now, sigh).
If it makes you feel better, I think only SMB North offered the garageable Penthouse option. And I don't think SMB-West did 7,000# E150s at all. So, if that's the location you were at, the information was likely accurate for that location.

So just to be clear. Not all 8500# (2007+) E150s are garageable with the Penthouse top. You had to also order the "G-top" option, which was offered on the pre-2008 E250 as well (which was also 8500 GVWR until the E150 took that weight slot). That said... I can't think of any reason somebody would order the 8500 GVWR van if they weren't wanting the G-top option. Otherwise you might as well go E350. Lastly, the G-top was introduced because the Dodge vans were discontinued, so if you're shopping years when the Dodge vans were still built (2003 or older) there would not be a G-top option on the Fords of those years. But the 7,000# E150 would be garageable with the regular Penthouse top since its sits so much lower.

Anyways, this old thread has more/better info on the G-top option, since I probably just made things more confusing:
http://www.sportsmobileforum.com/for...tion-7879.html
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Old 08-22-2019, 11:50 PM   #20
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Also, a 7000# E-150 is going to be very close to max GVWR before you even put any gear in it, if it has anything like a full interior build.
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