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1985 Eddie Bauer build

73431 Views 406 Replies 41 Participants Last post by  mtbikerTi
So, as some of you know, my '81 was rear ended a few months ago.

I found myself a nice '85 while I was visiting friends in Seattle. It was in nice shape, but just a little rough. I could just tell it was very solid (doors clicked closed nicely, no rips or tears in the interior), just some cosmetic stuff that needed work, like a broken wing window, cracked windshield, some body rust, etc. Bought it for $1800 and drove it 500 miles home. It has 50,000 on the odometer and I'm imagining considering it's condition, that it's probably 150k. It also hasn't been registered since 2011.

Over the next few months, all of the goodies from my '81 will be going into the new '85. My family tells me I should call it the Phoenix since it'll be bringing the other back to life.

Time for a build thread!

It's a 1985 Eddie Bauer edition with all the bells and whistles. I had looked at several other Broncos, and found a few I liked, but despite the issues it had, this one stood out. I also like that it has a tan interior, which is about the only other color aside from the awesome black interior of my '81 that I could stand. (I even passed up some nicer Broncos because I knew I couldn't stomach the pimp red interior for the next who knows how many years. :toothless)

Another set of pictures I took half way home from Seattle. Had to stop and commemorate the new Bronco. I'm hoping the original Ford Bronco tire cover will fit over 32" tires, but I have my doubts.

Here it is sitting next to my '81

I just finished building my 300 in April, so it'll definitely be going in in the near future. It currently has an EFI 302 and an AOD. I'm debating between the NP435 I have in the '81 or getting a ZF5. The 3.00 worked great with the NP435 but the 3.55s in the '85 might be a bit much on the highway. An overdrive is much needed.

I'll also be keeping the EFI pump and installing a fuel injection kit of some kind. I think I'm checked out on carbs.

Immediate things I knew it needed

Tachometer is all screwed up. Just sort of flops around and points wherever.
AOD shifts hard
Cracked windshield
Rust in the body panels and rotted tailgate
Fuel gauge doesn't work
Headliner sagging
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Looking good man!

On the supermotors pics, I've found that if I always take them landscape, it works just fine. I think there's a way to do it, and I think there's a thread about it somewhere here.

What's up with the 87+ filler hose? In what way is it different from the 86 and back?

I've had a bw1345, and had no problems. It's just a previous model of the bw1356 that newer Broncos and f-series had. The np208 and both BW cases are aluminum and chain driven. If you go searching for a zf5, you may find a BW 4407 behind it, which is a big brother to the BW1356.

Did you have a hydro clutch put on your 81? If so, take it and the pedals out of it because you'll need them for the 85 on a zf5 swap. You cant use the pedals off of a zf5 parts truck because the zf never came in a 80-86. You have to use the pedal assembly from the same generation of truck due to the dash structure differences.
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That is correct, the 1356 is magnesium, but it's still a soft, thin cast piece compared to the cast iron cases.
As for your transfer case situation, the np208 has the "highest" low gear at 2.61. The bw cases are slightly lower, around 2.69.

Np 208 and bw1345 are aluminum cased. 1356 and the big brother 4407 are magnesium.
From what I saw, the 1345 was 2.72, and the 1356 was 2.69. My np208 is 2.61.

I agree, there's no real clear winner between the three. Stick with what your bronco was set up for.
Yo AB, what's up with the bronco? Has it made it out of the body shop yet?
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Well that is ridiculous, but not much you can do about it. I bet you're dying to get her back home
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Looking real nice! I personally like the no rocker trim look myself
Give that paint a month, then you can get as crazy as you want polishing it. Sounds like it needs wet sanded. Since its a single stage, you can treat it like an old lacquer finish. Polish, buff, and wax: and you'll have a great paint job.

SEM is the go to brand for interior paint for vinyl and plastic.

Maybe it's the lighting, the light grille or a faded emblem but my black grill looks good with a brand new ford oval. The blue is much darker than on yours. I like yours either way, and I don't think the ford letters would be too much.

Looks great, and I bet you're thrilled to have it back home
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Personally, I think you can do the wet sanding. Especially being single stage, you won't burn through a clear coat. Just do some research on technique and practice. A block with 2000 grit, then 3000, 4000, 5000, and 6000 will get you a nice finish. Use water with a small percentage of dish soap. Follow that with a buffing wheel on a buffer (not an angle grinder!), and then a nice hand rubbed wax job.

Stacey David has a nice video on bringing old paint back to new that's is a good watch. I think it's on an old black fox body.

Now you know why I was so thrilled about working on a 6... v8s are a major pain. Imagine fitting long tube headers on one.

As far as the hood letters, you could put them on the tailgate, like the 78/9s had. Under the key switch. I plan on doing that, even have a couple different sets of letters I'm pondering.

Not sure about the SEM, I guess I'd start by finding a list of their colors. I believe they have all the correct factory colors. I've never personally used it. My 85 interior was all spray dyed at the interior shop, long before I got it.
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I'm the opposite, I like the blue oval on my grille, but the grille is black. I removed a billet grille, because I don't like they way they look. It's in a box on my shelf, gathering dust.
Just fyi, a normal military surplus .50 cal ammo can fits perfectly under the hood. Since I have a second battery in the factory toolbox spot, I'm gonna fit it on the passenger fender liner. I have TONS of room over there. They are cheap, durable, and watertight.
I agree. Mine had one I'm sure, since I have the same overflow tank.
Yeah I'm sure the original owner yanked the toolbox when they added the second battery. It could have been busted up for all I know. They did add a metal one in the cargo bay in the wasted area behind the wheel well though.

My 85 solenoid isn't even the same style as that one. That's a lot of wires, but I've never seen an 80s efi up close.

I was thinking the 302 was still carbed in your bronco. Does it still have the factory over-the-valvecover airbox? That would be really handy if one were to add a shaker scoop to an efi ford.
Holley recently released a two bbl slayer efi, if that peaks your interest. Not sure if it would boost mpg or not. If I were smarter, i would have gone efi instead of the quickfuel, but oh well.

The black solenoids are what you'll find on efi models. My 90, 94, 95, and both 96s have all used the black plastic style, no matter what GVWR or engine (302, 351, 460, 7.3, 351 respectively).
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Off topic but dude, that's some nice cursive penmanship. You just don't see that any more.

Carry on
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Yo, take a small amount of jb-weld and rebuild that little place you messed up. Then touch it up with black, and follow with the chrome (probably actually just aluminum) paint pen.

JB will stick to the plastic if it's roughed up. That's what I patched holes with on my bezel.
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That sounds like a great idea. I have a few scalpel knives and picks that'd be great for shaping it. Maybe even drill a few tiny pinholes into it so the JB weld really has something to grip into?
Won't hurt. I'll say to keep it as neat as possible. JB doesn't sand the easiest. You would be best off with the putty as opposed to the liquid type. It doesn't fill tiny holes real well though.

Not sure if you caught it in my gauge thread, but mothers mag and aluminum polish works so well on the black bezels that they will look brand spanking new.
My first check would be the TTB drop brackets. They can loosen, and cause those symptoms. Check the hardware that holds them onto the crossmember. Next would be wheel bearings, or a loose spindle nut. Check all related TTB bushings as well.

I've had both cases cause a problem when turning.
Hmmm. That is odd. I wonder if it's a u joint going bad, or even broken. Or even a spider gear? Does that have an open diff in the front?

My f250 had one of the axle drop brackets shear two bolts off and the other two were 1/4" loose. Going around a curve or turn would send it into a death wobble that wouldn't stop until I let off the throttle and let it slow down.

Also had a set of tires that were causing similar problems in a 99 e250. Would vibrate between 45 and 55 mph. They didn't look horrible, but two new tires cured it completely.
A bit off topic, but have you been following Bruce Sizemore's (gramps) 300 head development over on fordsix? It's pretty exciting to see the progress and relatively low target price for a crossflow. Maybe some day we'll be able to get our hands on one.
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