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i started this slow motion build about a year ago and i hope to wrap it up by the end of May. sooner would be great, but i'm trying to be realistic.

here is my starting point, the day i got it in feb 2010. it's a 1985 eddie bauer with 351w/c6 sitting on a 4 inch rancho lift with extended radius arms, lift leafs, and 32 inch Bronco Radials....it's a real bronco, you got Bronco Radials on your bko? i paid way too much for it bc i wanted a near perfect body (no rust) to start with.

this is the start of the 28 inches of snow DC got that night, which made for a perfect 4wd test the next morning.

this thing did great in the snow! i pulled several vehicles out while being 1 of very few vehicles on the road.

i bought this thing with the intention of lifting it some more...my uninformed idea at the time was to "add" 2 inches to the suspension lift and possibly throw on a body lift to clear 37 or 38 inch tires and doing some mild trail wheeling with the family on camping trips. i learned real fast it was going to be more involved!
 

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a couple pics of it on my first trail ride camping with 3 little kiddos...momma stayed home!




on our 3 hour drive home at 70mph, my driver rear tire blew out causing me to fish-tail across 2 lanes of interstate traffic. as i am gaining control of my truck and pulling to the side, my 6yr old (at the time) daughter says while laughing, "ha, ha. i know what happened. you popped a tire!" this little girl has turned out to be lil miss adventurous and loves to go wheeling with daddy!

anyway, that caused the first upgrade...bigger rubber! i found a set of used 33x12.50x15 dunlop mud rovers for cheap and threw those on.

my next upgrade was doing the 6 litre tune-up, hoping mainly for better mpgs. no luck on the mpgs, but i had an obvious increase in performance. the motor simply just ran better.

a while later, i started hearing my brake booster hissing when depressing the pedal. luckily, while junking with my buddy rick (379sinvb) i found a hydroboost set up at a jy in a 1990 F-superduty tow truck. i scored the booster, mc, pump, and lines for $125! the whole thing bolted right in and was a huge improvement over the vacuum booster. (sorry no pics)

during this time, i acquired a few parts vehicles (not all at once). the first was a 89 bronco that i bought for the the aod, thinking i'd swap that into my rig to help with mpgs. i decided against that with future plans of swapping in a diesel so i parted out the running 302, aod, and some body/trim parts to cover my initial investment.

the next vehicle was a 79 bronco that i bought planning to use the d44 and front suspension for a sas. i ended up deciding on going with 1 tons, so i parted that one out and actually made some money. this is the beast


here are some pics of why i am happy with the decision to go 1 ton instead of 1/2 ton...

notice the pinion isn't pointing up as it should?



this is what i found. the pinion yoke pulled out by hand!



the pinion shaft sheared clean!



here is the video of the occurence. it is pretty obvious at 1.25min in


i did this on the same trip....it was a brand new steering link, too



also ripped a brake line...gotta love parts store parking lot repairs!

 

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Glad to finally see a thread for this baby :D
thanks man. i was kinda waiting to have some decent progress before i posted a build. now, i hope to be going at it pretty steady until it is done.


some more pics.

prior to the wheeling trip when i broke my front pinion, i was trying to tighten up my steering. i had my wife turn the wheel while i looked under the truck and i noticed the driver frame twisting like a pretzel. after some investigation, i found this....



this is the bottom where the engine cross-member meets the bottom frame rail....it should not have that gap there!



i welded up both areas of concern and it held through that wheeling trip just fine. i can't seem to find the pics of my welds, maybe that's good bc it was early in my welding and they were ugly!

on to some building....or tearing down, anyway.

with my front diff being shot i didn't want to waste any money fixing it since i planned to swap in 1 tons, so i decided to jump right in. my plan is to do a leaf sas, so in order to get everything right (like shackle angle and hanger placement) i decided it should have the weight of the diesel on it. i'm kinda going about fixing the front axle the long way by doing a power-train swap first, but it all makes sense in my head!

so here is the recipient and the donor next to each other. donor is my old work truck, a 1989 F250 supercab 4x4, 7.3idi, zf5, 10.25 sterling (anyone need parts?).



the bronco's new heart in it's old home....



a couple of the ECBM (that's East Coast Bronco Mafia) boys helping with teardown, thanks Kenny(kenny's 94) and Rick(379sinvb)!



that diesel is just asking to come out!



that's me giving it hell...someone had the genius idea of pulling a 1000lb motor with trans and tc attached. who would that genius be? the thing was so heavy we had better luck rolling the truck back verses trying to roll the hoist.



some more ECBM boys helping me pull the load, thanks Josh(jfritts) and Mark(aznmark)!



my first diesel truck is now heartless, it is almost painful to see it like this



my tiny garage is getting filled with parts quick!

 

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here are some more progress pics....

got the bko in place ready for surgery



last pic of the original 351w powerplant



my trio of lil helpers....my kiddos are the whole reason i sold my 2003 Victory Vegas in order to have a more family-friendly toy...



there's my bronco's heart with more ECBM buddies helping, Fritts and Mark

 

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Keep up the work! Im in the starting phase of a 1 ton swap and have intentions to do a diesel swap as well! with the same frame, ill be following your build for ideas!
 

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my tiny 1 car garage became really small with 2 motors, transmissions, and transfer cases....



so...i got into working on cars and trucks as a kid bc my dad was enlisted in the US Navy with 6 kids and a stay-at-home mother....meaning we were poor and had to fix everything ourselves. whenever he did a motor build or decent mod, he would always clean it up real good and paint it. this does 2 things; 1-it shows that you have put some time into your work and 2- it helps you find leaks/problems later. going with what the old man taught me, i had to clean up my mess.

zf5 almost spotless...



while removing the tranny mount, i had this little fun episode to deal with (not due to me screwing up, the bold was seriously cross-threaded)



i was able to find a local shop that specializes in aluminum welding and they had it fixed in about 20 minutes and 50 bucks later.

a little primer and Ford blue paint...

 

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Going to be a follower of this thread..its looking good so far ....
 

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next up on the parts cleaning....np208



it's been sitting in my garage just like this for months now. this thursday it should be getting some color to it as i am also planning to have the diesel re-gasketed and painted!

so this is a 1-ton SAS as well as a diesel swap. i decided to get the ttb outta the way. ever seen a floating bronco before?



and there is my ttb with 4 inch rancho lift in all it's glory....mark (thinblueline) has found a new home for it under his bronco.



next update....some frame boxing and front leaf hanger fab!
 

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Looking good Josh, pick up the pace bro. We have 4 weeks until the migration north to Winchester. I'll get over to help when I can. A list of days when you plan to work on it might help us that want to join in. Haven't seen those radius arms in a while, but man I think I just saw that ttb yesterday. Hhhmmmmmm...........:haha
 
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