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Addicted to Junk
10,210 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
So I'm going to start this thread for my 85 Bronco. I've done a lot to it, but lots more to come. I bought it in 2015 after my namesake, Bigblue94 was burnt to a crisp. I found it on eBay, and it was only 2 hours from me. It was mine for 6500. Lifted, locked, and restored (all around 2003)

Current Stats: 85 Bronco, base model
309 ci inline 6, 9.75:1 CR, 4 barrel carb, Schneider 140H cam.

Stock NP435 and NP208

8.8 rear axle, 4.56 gears and Detroit Locker
D44 TTB, 4.56, Detroit Trutrac

4" ProComp stage 2 lift with extended radius arms.

37x12.50x16 10ply Irok ND tires on procomp wheels.

12k winch on a cradle for front or rear use. Dual batteries as well.

Not long after I bought it, the 36s were dry rotting and falling apart so I bought new wheels and the 37s.

Then I removed those hideous nerf bars. Much better

Nex up was replacing the billet grille with a stock style. I chose a black grille. Also replaced the rest of the grill trim and headlight bezels.

It was also at this point I decided my old sealed beam headlights weren't cutting the mustard. So I upgraded to these Rampage H4 conversions and the JBG heavy duty harness. So much brighter!

I also added a couple LED lights in the grille.

Then came time to replace the TTB pivot bushings. So the TTB got a near full rebuild. That's when I found out I had a TruTrac in the front! What a surprise!

I also went to a Dana 50 stub shaft at this point. It was not clearancing fully, so I put it in the lathe and trimmed it up some.

From this

To this

Stay tuned, more back story to come

Addicted to Junk
10,210 Posts
Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Since the bronco has zero carpet, and a bedliner interior, I wanted something in the back to cut down on noise and keep stuff from sliding. So I bought a rubber bed mat for a 90s f150 and trimmed it to fit. It goes all the way under the rear seat.

I also added a new stereo, two new door speakers, and a subwoofer.

Next up was the exhaust. I have long tube headers on this, so a custom y-pipe was required. I chose 2.5" pipe for the lead pipes, into a flowmaster scavenger y-collector and out in to a single 3" pipe. Im running a small magnaflow cat and a borla xr1 muffler. This was all done by myself, using a welder and mandrel bends.

Old vs new Y-pipe

Old vs new tailpipe

All tucked up nice and tight.

Full exhaust thread

Addicted to Junk
10,210 Posts
Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Next up my gauges.

My speedometer itself was making terrible noises, then the needle fell off!

Insurance from the fire bought me a full set of Autometer gauges.
- GPS speedo
- fuel level
-oil psi
-water temp
- Wideband AFR
- 2 Differential temps

I decided to mount them in the factory spot, and the factory bezel. Made up a main pod, and 2 dual side pods.

I sprayed them with a coat of bedliner for texture, then normal black spray paint.

Then came the actual wiring. Here's my kindergarten wiring diagram

Also added blinkers, high beam indicator, and warning lights for the oil psi and water temp.

Full thread on gauges

Addicted to Junk
10,210 Posts
Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
I also did a few things to make the interior more usuable and comfortable.

One was installing a Shelf-It along the top of the windshield. Handy for storage and my CB radio is mounted up there.

I added a Tuffy console as well. It's the perfect height for an arm rest. It also has tons of lockable storage and better cup holders than the factory console.

While running the CB antenna wire, I got rid of the old insulation in the passenger rear quarter panel. It was full of dust. I replaced it with the insulation off an old dishwasher.

And as you can see, I have metal side panels, made by the PO

I didnt do the other side yet because it has a bunch of stuff in the way, like a tool box and the winch cradle.

Eventually, the bucket seats out of my totalled Mach 1 will be going in, and the low backs coming out.

Addicted to Junk
10,210 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
Next up, I was going to tune my new quickfuel 450 cfm carb. I get the engine up to temp, and soon see coolant boiling out the side of my head gasket! Damn!

Leak was in front of the #5 plug

So off came the head for gasket replacement.

At that point, I noticed some scars in the cylinders. That means the whole thing needs rebuilt.

Those familiar with the 300 know how long it is, especially with the clutch on the back. Had to turn it sideways to get it out .

I found a 240 in a neighbor's van. Once I removed the rat nest, I pulled the head off, and found it to be a 300 head. Oh well, spare parts are spare parts.

Found out my block was already .040" over bored, so I sourced some shiney 351w step dish pistons at 4.060".

Also had larger valves installed in the head

Add in a dozen Harland Sharp roller rockers

Ain't she purdy!?

All nestled down in her mounts

Full Engine Build Thread

Addicted to Junk
10,210 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
While the engine work was being done, I decided to do a Saginaw swap as well.

Good ol "canned ham" pump

I also added a cooler to the power steering system, and got rid of the factory cooling loop. This is just the trans cooler of my 96 f350, which is getting a manual swap.

For the lines, I used -06AN from Russel. These are power steering specific fittings and hose, for the high pressure.

At some point, I'll get one of those redheads or a 4bolt box

Lines and fittings

It works great, with absolutely zero groan like the old c2 Ford pump.

Addicted to Junk
10,210 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
I also upgraded the fuel lines. I currently have both an electric pump and a mechanical pump. The electric one was added by the PO, and is manually operated by a switch on the dash. I never use it. The pump is located under the driver seat, on the frame rail. From there, I converted to -06AN braided stainless line. I used Earl's brand hose, and a combo of Earl's and Summit fittings. I have two filters, first a huge 100 micron filter, then a good sized 10 micron filter. They feed a 35 gph mechanical pump and then an aeromotive fuel pressure regulator set at 6.5 psi.

100 micron KRC filter

Hose assembly with a KoulTool

The 10 micron filter

Both filters in their places

Up to the pump

And over to the FPR

And, 300 owners will notice, I ran the line around the back of the engine, instead of over the valve cover.


Addicted to Junk
10,210 Posts
Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
Other tidbits

Since the PO added the bushwacker cutout flares, I had quite an overhang on the rear, and i didnt like it. So i bought some 2" wheel spacers.



While the engine was being reinstalled, I upgraded the grounds and starter wire to 1/0 welding cable.

Now this is the winch setup. All credit goes to the PO.

Front 2" reciever hitch and winch power studs

The rear has a normal reciever hitch and a set of power studs as well. The winch is powered by dual deep cycle marine batteries, with a big shutoff switch that kills power to the bumper mounted 12v power studs. The batteries are mounted on either side, and the auxiliary battery hold-down has the winch power shutoff switch on it.


Addicted to Junk
10,210 Posts
Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
And that's pretty much how it currently sits. Again, broken down. However, this time, it was self induced! I drove it 900 miles out to Moab, UT for the FSB Invasion. As I pulled in to my camp spot, my fan starts banging on something, so I kill the engine. My 1200 mile old harmonic balancer had delaminated and slid an inch forward, hitting the fan. Not to be deterred, and with the help of some friends, I came up with a clever band aid; the wrench for my fan clutch.

It worked. For about 2 hours of trail time on Fins N Things. One finger of the wrench broke off and the other was close to doing the same. So I sat and waited for a new balancer to come in.

After that was fixed, I took her out on Hell's Revenge and subsequently overheated about 5 times and broke the centering stud on the Double Cardon joint on my rear driveshaft. But I limped it home and to the show n shine, making a terrible noise. I found the issue, and removed the rear shaft, and drove in front wheel drive to get parts.

Drove home the next day, and made 700 miles. Only issue was loosing the bolts out of one of my collector flanges. The next morning, 150 miles from home, I feel like I'm bareback riding a 5000 pound horse bucking its heart out. I barely get it pulled over from the left lane and stopped. Oh boy...

Time to get a tow.

Got to a shop, recommended by AAA, and find a completely trashed spindle, lockout, one bearing, one and 2 halves of the lock nuts, and a crumbling caliper piston. Watching the mechanic set the bearing preload, I know I did em too tight.

Luckily, they had it completely fixed by 4 the next afternoon. I made it the next 150 miles home, limping and loud as a banshee, but I made it.

So this brings y'all up to the speed of things.

Future plans are as follows.

Fix the other side of the TTB and swap to chromoly shafts. Also a new driveshaft for the rear.

Swap to dual electric fans instead of the mechanical fans. Also modify a spare hood with vents for extracting heat from the headers.

Roll Cage

Modifying a ranch hand rear bumper with a spare tire carrier and chopping the ball mount section off for better clearance.

Wiring and mounting up the 50" LED bar i have, above the windshield.

Maybe some sort of half doors.
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