Ford Bronco Forum

Ford Bronco Forum (
-   78 - 96 Build Forum....Builds only (
-   -   My 81 Turbo’d Bronco project.... ( 05-10-2019 05:36 PM

My 81 Turbo’d Bronco project....
3 Attachment(s)
Well i’ll start posting some pics and info about my 1981 bronco build. It started out as a rig i picked up in central calif in late 2015, had been sitting in a carport since 1990, 1 owner who died. It was full of bird nests and the mice had made some cozy airbnb hideouts. No rust, everything stock and original, 85k, orig blue plates, carb’d 302, c6, ford 9”, baby dookie brown in/out. This was a project for my son & i to do, to start teaching him how to wrench, develop some mechanical abilities & just how to generally figure things out.

Plan: go fast, keep it ugly, some mild wheeling w/ desert speed capabilities, safety & comfort.

It will end up as a turbo'd 331 stroker with a solo suspension.

This is the day i got it: 05-10-2019 05:43 PM

1 Attachment(s)
First things first, rear drums frozen - so new pads/drums, rotors & pads in fromt w/ new brake hoses. The fuel tank was empty, fuel lines all cracked. So dropped the tank & cleaned it out, new rubber fuel lines, cleaned out the carb, new plugs, wires, cap & rotor. Amazing enough after a couple cranks, it started, idle’d, & drove it around. Had to see how this stocker flexed.... 05-10-2019 05:51 PM

1 Attachment(s)
It had some questionable smells, rotten tires. So gutted the interior, sprayed bed liner. Found some cheap swampers on craigslist, slapped those on, found some van seats for the front & put em in. Also son's first paint project - sanded it down, taped off the edges, and used 8 rattle cans of camo green spray paint. Another flex shot. 05-10-2019 06:11 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Heres where it starts to get fun. Found a 90 fox body mustang, pulled out the fuel injected 5.0, & was going to just drop it in. Then thought to myself - i think it needs more power.

Then took that 5.0 to a friends shop, had em throw in a 331 stroker kit with some AFR heads.

Now ive done multiple builds on various vehicles over the years, and have turbo’d a few of them - so this is when i decided that i was going to do a mild turbo build & make project FAST N UGLY! 05-10-2019 11:59 PM

1 Attachment(s)
331 stroker build... 05-14-2019 11:54 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Old 302 comin out...., new one being mocked up. I used new parts from an On3 turbo kit made for an 86-93 fox body mustang, but quickly realized that the only part that would be of use to this build was the passenger side manifold that the turbo sits on, which i had to modify to fit anyway. The drivers side manifold, crossover piping - well actually all the piping was going to be custom. For the drivers side manifold i used a shorty header from summit, cut the flange off and tig’d a v-band, and used 2” steel piping to mate up to the turbo mani on the pass side. Crossovers have flex sections to alleviate any expansion/contraction w/ the crazy heat cycles that this beast will go thru. 05-15-2019 12:04 AM

4 Attachment(s)
Old 302 out. Turbo mani mock up on new 331 stroker. 05-15-2019 12:12 AM

1 Attachment(s)
Front mount intercooler, tranny cooler. Even though the bronco has a decent amount of space in the engine bay, by the time all the piping goes in, hoses, electric fan, downpipe, etc....its pretty cramped in there...not as bad as a ricer tho... 05-15-2019 12:21 AM

People ask me...why in the world would you put a turbo in a bronco, & u cant offroad a turbo truck!
Short answer is this: because ive never seen one in an 81 FSB, and more importantly is the feeling, the sound, the torque, and the driveability is flat out insane. Anyone who has tinkered, built, or even bought a properly running turbo’d car will understand the grin that u cannot wipe off ur face when the turbo is fully spooled, the rush of air, and when the blow off valve blows off makes peoples heads turn in complete disbelief!
Offroad capability in terms of power & torque is crazy. Desert driving, mud, steep hills - no issue.

reptillikus 05-15-2019 10:16 AM

All of my experience with turbos comes from the diesel world. In a nutshell- they are awesome :rockon

Im curious as to turbo specs, PSI, etc. Id love to one day turbocharge my 460, and i know the air requirements for a gas powered engine are different than that of a diesel, but not much more beyond that.

d_rock 05-15-2019 03:20 PM


Originally Posted by (Post 7204768)
People ask me...why in the world would you put a turbo in a bronco, & u cant offroad a turbo truck!

Sweet build, looking forward to seeing more!
You can certainly wheel with a turbo. A buddy of mine back in university built a 1st gen Toyota pickup 4x4 with a turbo'd 22R on propane... that thing was nuts! It ended up being an offroad-only machine, that he pulled around with an OBS Ford.

JustRight 05-15-2019 10:11 PM

Awesome project to have with your kid. Way to go Dad.

MONGOMANN75 05-16-2019 10:23 AM


Originally Posted by JustRight (Post 7205066)
Awesome project to have with your kid. Way to go Dad.

Nice ride man! You've got a diamond in the rough right there! :popc1:

david-09 05-17-2019 04:47 AM

Wow! I think that the Motor will be awesome in your bronco! Looking forward to see more

zainyD 05-17-2019 07:03 AM

Will be watching this, very cool.

cdmck 05-17-2019 09:27 AM

This looks pretty dang nice. When you get it going, post up some videos so we can hear it, lol.

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 11:41 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
User Alert System provided by Advanced User Tagging (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2019 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
vBulletin Security provided by vBSecurity v2.2.2 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2019 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome