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Discussion Starter #21 (Edited)
I wish it was a rear tank or bus style tank. Although since mines not extended body it might be a bit tight to try and adapt something. Maybe il get lucky and just be able bash the tank in some. I don't know how much smaller the 4406 is than a 1356 but I'm pretty sure everyone else with the mid tank has to shorten them. So that's the plan I'm going with. U joint has a nice kit I might buy to do the tank but if my dutchee buddy says he can do it without it il let him do his thing.
 

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Discussion Starter #22
Is your fuel tank steel or plastic? I think they came both ways, somebody, maybe u joint, sells a steel piece to weld on. I saw a video of a plastic tank getting plastic welded, diy style. Somewhere there's a whole tutorial on it, soldering iron and zip ties as the "welding wire" so to speak.

The first van I bought to convert is a 91 e350 EB, with only a rear tank, and the spare mounted on the back. It was rough and I looked for a cleaner van.
My gm van had room for the t case as is, it did factor in on the decision to go that route.

How hard was it to convert the gm van? I was afraid of the unibody making it more difficult where the Ford is real simple to me, basically drill and cut a few holes and decide how you would want to do the front springs hangers. Oh and this figuring out which transfer case to use.
 

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Discussion Starter #24 (Edited)
I see alot of overloaded fleet pickups and vans with 4.2s getting abused pretty regularly, they're either cheap and easy to fix or not as bad as some people say. I know the 97-98 maybe 99 had a problem with the intake gaskets or something but supposedly in the 2000 and newer are okay. This is my first 4.2 and it's an 02, it runs pretty good, I'm happy with the power it has stock 2wd. But concerns of reliability did cross my mind being a full-size van and v6, but it can't be any worse than a g20 with a 4.3. It's not getting a crazy sportsmobile build out so besides adding the weight and extra drag of making it 4x4 it should stay pretty light, considering it's a 3/4 ton. It's just getting a bed in back and some under bed storage. I wish I had power stroke money but just finding a wheelchair van and equipped like I wanted aside from 4x4 was a task. This one was supposed to be a 5.4, after it was delivered I found out otherwise, I should've had someone else look it over for me but it's too late now so I'm doing the best I can with what I have. And I'm not opposed to having something different, I kind of thought forged internals and a supercharger would be nice, after reading a few dozen builds on v6power.net, there are a few with high numbers and claim pretty reliable. Il be happy if I can cruise 65 with my small trailer both ATVs and a week of camping gear for my wife and myself. I think I can get what I'm looking for with gears, I don't need to go fast, that's how I ended up running wheelchair vans, I just need to get where I'm going and not get stuck, hopefully.
Should I be replacing the oil pump and drive housing every 50k? I haven't read of this issue yet but I'm still trying to learn as much as possible about the 4.2. And if I use my spare 4.2 for a build I'm going to want to use high quality stuff. Hate to waste an expensive short block over a hundred dollar part. I did read about the cam sensor synchro shaft(?) wearing out and not pumping oil and causing failure.
 

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one of my buds did a 4.2 swap into his ranger. i begged him to not do that..if he wanted a 6 cyl...it would be wiser to just run a cyclone 3.7 or 3.5 from something lke a transit instead.. that way ya get the bad ass 6r80 too.

he ended up with a explorer 5.0 after the inevitable 4.2 implosion....though to be fair the 5.0 kicked him in the balls too and the 8.8 got cranky out back....

but the 5.0 is worth working on.



of course..with good maintenence the 4.2 can be a 250-300 k work horse in front of a 5 speed or 4r70.... but it is a coin toss compared to the 4.3 gm.... the gm 4.3 is an awesome lil work horse...especially the earlier 90's units. i would rather have a 4.3 if the choice was between those two.


in your situation working with what you have is prudent. hopefully you have a good one and you will be happier then a pig in slop with the beast.

powerstrokes comparatively are POTENTIALLY much more expensive to own when towing is not a goal.

so i think your right on and i was too quick with my bias....cause i loved my e350 psd. but that big bitch could knock down an honest 19-23 mpg at 65 mph(2wd). hard not to love the damn thing.
 

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Discussion Starter #26
one of my buds did a 4.2 swap into his ranger. i begged him to not do that..if he wanted a 6 cyl...it would be wiser to just run a cyclone 3.7 or 3.5 from something lke a transit instead.. that way ya get the bad ass 6r80 too.

he ended up with a explorer 5.0 after the inevitable 4.2 implosion....though to be fair the 5.0 kicked him in the balls too and the 8.8 got cranky out back....

but the 5.0 is worth working on.



of course..with good maintenence the 4.2 can be a 250-300 k work horse in front of a 5 speed or 4r70.... but it is a coin toss compared to the 4.3 gm.... the gm 4.3 is an awesome lil work horse...especially the earlier 90's units. i would rather have a 4.3 if the choice was between those two.


in your situation working with what you have is prudent. hopefully you have a good one and you will be happier then a pig in slop with the beast.

powerstrokes comparatively are POTENTIALLY much more expensive to own when towing is not a goal.

so i think your right on and i was too quick with my bias....cause i loved my e350 psd. but that big bitch could knock down an honest 19-23 mpg at 65 mph(2wd). hard not to love the damn thing.
I'm keeping my fingers crossed this works out. I wish I could've found an idi van, I know they're no modern power house like the psd but they are so dead simple it's not even funny. I had a 92 crew cab dually 2wd for about 6 months before I traded it for a jeep because it needed too much work that I didn't really want to do back then. It got good mileage and would run on the crappiest fuel. I hit 21mpg a few times when working out of town. It was slow but that old rusty truck would haul anything you could put behind it, within reason of course, I wasn't trying to haul a 330 cat trackhoe or anything like that. But car trailers loaded down with scrap and loads of dirt and wood no problem. Just slow going.
 

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Discussion Starter #27
I just tell myself they're all junk when they're broke. Hahaha

I'm a Chevy guy before anything else. I wish Chevy would've made the g vans in a full frame design so it would be as simple to swap as the ford. I do have to say empty vans compared I've had all of the big 3 in 6 cylinder and this Ford is definitely the most powerful feeling but it also has the lowest gears so far. My dodge is a dog with the 3.9 and airplane gears but my wife likes it. The 6 cyl Chevy was better than the dodge but had slightly better gears, my wife didn't like it because the driver area not being modern like the Ford and dodge. Now I'm getting my license back and just want to have a cool van to take me wherever I want to get to.
 

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Getting out and using whatever you've got is far better than sitting at home with impressive plans for a perfect build :evil:


I'd speculate that your 4.2 4r70w could live a long enough life with 4.88s and 32"ish tires, just slow down when you need to.

My gm van is an 06, full frame, I did an ifs 4wd build, knowing if it didn't work I could go sas. The IFS was a personal challenge, but it keeps it a low profile, only 3" over stock, perfect for bombing 200 miles of freeway at 75mph, then following some 2 tracks through the woods to a camp site without getting stuck. I'm buying a CNC plasma table soon, going to start selling either the vans, or doing conversions.
 

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Discussion Starter #29
Getting out and using whatever you've got is far better than sitting at home with impressive plans for a perfect build <a href="http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/images/smilies/devil.gif" border="0" alt="" title="evil" >:)</a>


I'd speculate that your 4.2 4r70w could live a long enough life with 4.88s and 32"ish tires, just slow down when you need to.

My gm van is an 06, full frame, I did an ifs 4wd build, knowing if it didn't work I could go sas. The IFS was a personal challenge, but it keeps it a low profile, only 3" over stock, perfect for bombing 200 miles of freeway at 75mph, then following some 2 tracks through the woods to a camp site without getting stuck. I'm buying a CNC plasma table soon, going to start selling either the vans, or doing conversions.

Yours sounds pretty sweet. I started reading your thread after I asked about the unibody. I had assumed you had a g van instead of the express style for some reason. I'm partial to Chevy mainly because I've mostly had Chevy and know more about fixing them. If I could've found an AWD express equipped like this van for the same price range I would've been all over it and put a regular transfer case. But I guess econolines are more affordable because of sheer amount of them and all the fleet contracts.
I want to stay lowish with this van if possible, no more than 4" and no more than 35s if they will even fit. I have stock f25p springs and a leveling kit, I also have 2" shackles just in case the leveling kit won't cut it. I've always been a fan of filling the wheel to fender gap if possible.
It seems like I might be pioneering building a 4.2 4x4 van so I guess il be the first to know if it's up to the task of daily driver weekend warrior hunting camping duties. The general consensus on the f150 forum is that the 4.2 is a tough little engine and can take a beating, hence why it's so popular in fleet application. Made sense to me but I've been bs'ed before hahaha. I've wheeled with 4cyl rangers and yjs on 37s that guys beat on for years before getting rid of or major failure from abuse. I live in almost the middle of Cumberland valley so I don't need to travel too far and our mountains are ant hills compared to out west. I make a 4 hour trip to northern pa about twice a year. If I stick to the highway instead of zig zagging across Perry and juniata county I can cut that back to about 3 hours or a little more.
My big thing with this build is using as much stock Ford easy to acquire parts as possible. Well that and keeping it reliable, I don't need to get there fast I just need to get there. I got all the time in the world to enjoy the scenery on the ride and clog up the slow lane.
 

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Discussion Starter #30
I will be glad to get it back from the body shop though, after the front axle is in the rest is all easy stuff, well hopefully I'm sure something will be different or cause an issue. Either way I have all my parts except shortened gas tank and drive shafts.
 

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Discussion Starter #31
Still waiting for the body man to get done. At this rate il be lucky to make Pennsylvania rifle season while still being 2wd....
 

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Discussion Starter #32
So after more digging around online, since I've been waiting so long on body work, and looking a year differences and changes for the aode and 4r70w family. I think that I've been thinking too much based on others builds. Mine is an 02 and I'm using an 01 4x trans so my speed sensor should be on the side of the trans unless I'm looking at the wrong diagrams and pictures. So I should be able to run whichever transfer case I have available and it should stay happy. I'm probably wrong and looking at it wrong. Any other opinions and experiences are welcome.
 

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The speed sensor in the side of the trans is for transmission output speed for controlling shift points. That way, if you have the trans with a t-case behind it, it still shifts correctly even if the t-case is in Low Range...
I'm 99% sure your speedometer is using the tone ring mounted between the ring gear and carrier in the rear axle.
If it was going off transmission output speed, there would need to be a different calibration every time there was a different rear axle ratio.
With mid to late 90's Ford pickups, there was a procedure for adjusting the TIRE Revs per Mile within the cluster.
That kinda proves the speedometer is only concerned with the rear axle speed, and I can't imagine they'd go backward with the technology.
I do remember a buddy adjusting his speedometer for larger tires, it consisted of jumping some pins together, cycling the key, and changing a value in the digital odometer... I do recall him saying you could only re-program it a limited number of times.
 

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The speed sensor in the side of the trans is for transmission output speed for controlling shift points. That way, if you have the trans with a t-case behind it, it still shifts correctly even if the t-case is in Low Range...
I'm 99% sure your speedometer is using the tone ring mounted between the ring gear and carrier in the rear axle.
If it was going off transmission output speed, there would need to be a different calibration every time there was a different rear axle ratio.
With mid to late 90's Ford pickups, there was a procedure for adjusting the TIRE Revs per Mile within the cluster.
That kinda proves the speedometer is only concerned with the rear axle speed, and I can't imagine they'd go backward with the technology.
I do remember a buddy adjusting his speedometer for larger tires, it consisted of jumping some pins together, cycling the key, and changing a value in the digital odometer... I do recall him saying you could only re-program it a limited number of times.
FWIW, I was led to believe this same bs while planning a zf swap on my 02 f150 2wd. I'm not sure if it's different on the 4x4 trucks but my 02 2wd 4r70w f150 uses the speed sensor in the side of the trans for the speedometer. In my case I ended up wiring in into the tailshaft sensor on the 4406 I swapped in. Now it reads half as fast as it should but will use a dakoda digital box to sort that out later.
 

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Discussion Starter #35
Mine does not have a digital dash, it's supposed to be an 02 van, but it still has the roll over number odometer and trip.
 

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Discussion Starter #36
Body work finally buttoned up for the most part, after waiting around ten months and getting ripped off, my buddy and I finished the body work to get it on the road now I can start the other stuff.:homer:
 

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Discussion Starter #37
I wish I could post pics but I can't figure it out on mobile or desktop version on mobile.
 

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I wish I could post pics but I can't figure it out on mobile or desktop version on mobile.
You need to photo host with a separate website if you don't have a star, and if you have a red star w/ no avatar at the moment, it may be all fawked up due to the forum move.

Not sure which one is the best, but Photobucket charges and absolutely ruined tech forums so stay the hell away from those douchebags.
 

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I didn't bother to read all the posts in this thread so maybe you already have it fingered out about the speedometer situation, but here is some input ...


I just made a 2k F350 2wd V-10 van into a 4wd van .

I bought a trans and T-case out of a Super Duty 4x4 pickup of about same year, 4R-100 trans and 271 (I think, manual shift) T-case and shoved it in after shortening the fuel tank, plug and play zero problems

On the 4x4 the speed sensor is in the top of the adapter in between the trans and T-case, you need that sensor AND the one on top of the rear axle housing to get things to work correctly .
 
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