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Old 11-17-2017, 03:09 PM   #1
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Join Date: Nov 2017
Posts: 8
What did I get myself into/ Intro

I supose this is a good time for an introduction. I lurked this fine forum obsessively about 15 years ago in order to glean help for a DIY sportsmobile conversion.
I bought a really clean, non rusted 99 E-350, sight unseen from Michigan IIRC. My plan was to ship it to Advanced 4x4 in Utah then from there to my place in Seattle.
Actually, one the employees ended up picking it up and driving it to the shop. Anyhoo, life got in the way of my plans and I although sold the van, Iíve never let go of the idea that Iíd build a 4x4 camper van. I really wanted to do a U-Joint 4x4 E-450 box Ambo conversion but I saw teleheadís SMB on CL and figured Iíd just do a body swap, and old Bobí me uncle.
So, I called him up, we agreed on a number and I put down my deposit.
So far the transaction has been excellent. Super nice guy to deal with.
After securing teleheadís van I started scouring CL for a donor van. I wanted a reg. body cargo with a 7.3 P.S. Otherwise, Iím having to replace all the electrical harnessing behind the dash. And, I figured if I found a decent van I could either keep the Powerstroke as a spare or peddle it to offset costs. Probably the later.
Oh yah, I also wanted a color other than white.
Well, sometimes things just work out. Thereís a guy in Puyallup who has a green 2001 that fit the bill. So, I rode my bike out there Tuesday evening, checked it out, haggled for a bit, loaded up the trusty KTM 620 and drove back to Seattle. The body is pretty good, Iíll address a few small spots with a hammer and dolly but, no rust or rot. The tranny seams pretty tired. It shifts late and hard. The motor though seems awesome. Really easy to start, no smoke or blow-by super smooth idle and power delivery. Itís also really clean. The guy had no records on the van at all. He only new it was a one owner company van and has a bit over 200 thou. So I dunno what work has been done???
Love these 7.3 Powerstokes though.
Anyhow, Iím super happy to be here and sure Iíll have some questions for some of you as I dive into my body swap, in fact Iíll start now, anyone know of any threads on adding a innercooler to the 7.3 PS vans ?
Iíll also have allot of nice parts f/s so, donít hesitate to pm me if you need something. Especially if youíre local
Cheers, Paul

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Old 11-18-2017, 04:40 AM   #2
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Location: Imperial Beach,CA
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Cheers. Start uploading fotos. Everyone here can read, but boy howdy do we love our visuals!
Welcome Aboard Paul...
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Old 11-18-2017, 09:17 AM   #3
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Join Date: May 2007
Location: Southern New Mexico
Posts: 10,157
Wow, you sure jumped into the deep end, didn't you?

Congrats, and I can't wait to see the FrankenVan.

SMB-less as of 02/04/2012. Our savings account is richer, but our adventures are poorer.
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Old 11-18-2017, 03:14 PM   #4
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Join Date: Nov 2017
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Haha, yes I did. Shouldn’t be to bad though. I have a buddy that has a commercial auto shop with two lifts. I’m hoping to bribe him with hookers, beer, blow. Whatever it takes.
I have the donor van at my rental property but the SMB is still in Cali. I will post pix of everything in due time though. Patients grasshopper.
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Old 11-19-2017, 10:54 PM   #5
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Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: Sonoma County
Posts: 721
I'll be very curious to see how this goes. Conflicting info here and on Expo about how much work body swaps can be. I have a '99 RB 7.3 that needs one so as many details as you can post about mating the wiring of the two vans would be greatly appreciated!
2003 Astro AWD
2005 Tacoma Access cab 4x4
1999 E350 RB 7.3 "Al B. Tross" aka "Exxon Valdez"
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Old 11-20-2017, 07:58 AM   #6
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Join Date: Jul 2016
Location: Seattle, WA
Posts: 382
Turbopowa welcome! I am in Seattle also and was looking at the green van you purchased also. I have not done a body swap but did transplant a Poptop from one van to another and installed a Ujoint 4wd kit. I’m always looking to meet fellow van addicts in Seattle. PM me sometime I would enjoy having a conversation about your upcoming project.

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Old 11-21-2017, 04:49 AM   #7
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Location: Western North Carolina
Posts: 1,258
As for a body swap, I'd wouldn't recommend it especially if two different motors and very especially if the years are different.
As a good friend said "van mysteries" are rampant along the Econolines.
And I've seen these mysteries too when I was working for UJOR. Ford did some weird $h!t.
2001 E350 PSD w/ a bunch of stuff.
And had three other E350s...
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