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Old 10-06-2010, 11:32 AM   #1
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Advice on chassis purchase

Can I get opinions/advice on a potential Ford chassis I found? It is a new RB 2008 E250 5.4l with the following options

preferred equipment package 750A
3.73 limited slip
traction control
fixed side and rear cargo glass
deluxe engine cover
cloth bucket seats

We are planning to install a high fiberglass top (or possibly a penthouse) and an RB50 floor plan. We will tow 1500 lb frequently and 5000 lb occaisionally. We will be travelling in Oregon, Washinton, Idaho and nearby.

Questions: Do you think the engine and axle ratio are suitable for this purpose? Is the asking price of $19,000 resonable? Should it have additional options/equipment that would be hard to add later?

Thanks for your ideas1!
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Old 10-06-2010, 12:04 PM   #2
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Re: Advice on chassis purchase

The engine and axle should be suitable for use.

Typically a 250 doesn't have enough weight capacity for a full SMB conversion. SMB uses heavy MDF to make cabinets and couches, etc. You might try to find a custom boat shop that could replicate the funtionality of the SMB floorplan (or a custom floorplan that works for you) with stronger, lighter materials and wind up with a 250 that is not overloaded from the start.

Mike
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Old 10-06-2010, 11:19 PM   #3
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Re: Advice on chassis purchase

SMB will even do E150s (08+ with the 8600 GVWR), so an E250 should be fine also, at least for a 2wd.
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Old 10-07-2010, 06:16 AM   #4
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Re: Advice on chassis purchase

IMHO, the asking price of $19000 is a bit too high. Before I purchased my 06 E350 RB passenger van I blinked on an 09 E350 RB passenger van with 13K miles. The Ford dealership in San Jose was only asking $16000. By the time I returned a few days later it was gone. When I spoke to the used truck manager he said that he could get one the next time he goes to the auction. Well, a week or two later he had one but this time he was asking $21000. I'd like to think I'm not that stupid. I ended up going to a different Ford dealer to buy my current van. Its a Ford certified van, I got it for $13K.

Good luck in your search and haggling on a reasonable price.

Ray + lovely wife + our 3 kids
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Old 10-07-2010, 05:32 PM   #5
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Re: Advice on chassis purchase

Price sounds a little high. I paid 17K Canadian for an 08 E350 12 passenger XLT last summer. It needed tires. I had to wok on him a little though and told him 17k was the top of my budget. I walked away when he said he couldn't do it and then the next day he called me! I guess he could after all.

Dont worry about what some people around here say about the 5.4's power. Some people are afraid of reving the engine or letting the transmission get into second once in a while. You will be fine.
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Old 10-07-2010, 07:15 PM   #6
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Re: Advice on chassis purchase

Thanks for the replies, this is helping. As far as the price, this is a NEW 2008 with Zero miles and full warranty. I probably could get a used one for cheaper, but I'm doubting that the dealer will drop a lot considering his cost.
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Old 10-07-2010, 07:24 PM   #7
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Re: Advice on chassis purchase

Ask them to throw in the factory Class IV trailer tow wiring. This includes a 7-way plug, brake control tap-in, and associated relays under the hood. It is a far superior setup to anything aftermarket, because it fully isolates all trailer electrical circuit, and provides a 40-amp trailer charge circuit. It's about a $400 option from the factory, and is more than that at the dealer when you include labor. If they include it for the same price, I think it's a decent deal. If they won't spring for that, I'd make a lower offer.
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Old 10-07-2010, 07:26 PM   #8
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Re: Advice on chassis purchase

See if they'll throw in, and install, some tow mirrors. Not hard to install later, but a bit of a pain.


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Old 10-07-2010, 10:05 PM   #9
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Re: Advice on chassis purchase

Good bargaining chips if the dealer isn't budging on the price. In addition to the tow package and powered tow mirrors also ask for the chrome step bumper (in place of the very common and useless contour bumper). And since you're asking also ask for a tire upgrade from 225/75-16 to 245/75-16s for all 5 tires.

Ray
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Old 10-11-2010, 11:09 PM   #10
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Re: Advice on chassis purchase

I visited SMB Fresno last winter and they have stopped using MDF and are now using a marine quality plywood for cabinets, furniture, etc. I'm not sure how much lighter or heavier the new stuff is compared to MDF.

Rick
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