Hi everyone, introduction/advice
Hey yíall my name is Maxwell and this is my first post the the forum. I am 22 years old, I fight wild fires for the Forest Service and live out of my recently purchased 2005 Ford Econoline 350. I bought it right before the fire season started and had just enough time to build a super simple bed frame, lay down a couple sheets of plywood for my floors, do an oil change and with the help of my girlfriend make some curtains. It works for now being that I donít spend much time in it during the summer because of work, however come winter Iíll be needing insulation and a few more mods to live comfortably.
I want to do the whole 4x4 conversion but I currently donít exactly have a ton of money or time to throw at the van. I have been doing my research (yes ujoint off road haha) and think the best set up for me would be a 6inch lift on 35s and leaf springs, Iíll probably do the work in stages to save money so it will most likely be a 2wd with a locker for a while. I think thatís should get me by until I can afford to go full 4x4.
I lifted my old truck but that was a simple bolt on lift for a yota. I donít know how to weld and donít think I should attempt learning on my house. I definitely want todo some of the work on my own but a lot of it sounds is pretty gnarly, best case scenario would be for me todo some of the work to save money and the more in-depth work Iíll have a shop do.
What I would like to know from you fine people is...
* What are some good lifts for these vans?
* Where have yíall pulled axels from, any good suggestions for axel hunting? And off what vehicles?
* What work yíall think I could do on my own based on what experience I have told you about?
* Any good companies or fab shops in the LA area that you would suggest.
* Lockers/gearing? Have any of you installed them?
* Any good components or brands worth looking into?
* Tutorials explaining how to do a lot of the work?
* Any other suggestions or words of advice?
* Any steering stuff I should be aware of?
* Ball park costs of the work.
Any and all suggestions will be much appreciated! Thanks for your time.
Side note I have a 2014, single cab, 4x4 yota for sale, 3 inch lift low miles.