Here's a couple videos of me taking the Bronco up some small, lava rock hills that are across the canyon (Snake River) from where I live. The chugalugging I was getting, or the uneven throttle, was due to gas coming out my carb's vent and flooding my engine as it was off-axis.
I'd have to floor it to clear out the gas while manipulating the clutch or I'd just let it do it's thing which is basically what happened in the second video. It would start surging from the gas flooding the engine and it'd cause me to move around and my foot couldn't keep things steady on the gas and it was a never ending loop of herk jerk fun. This was the original 351m with a 4bbl carb (Edelbrock 750cfm) and intake (Edelbrock Performer) that the PO put on.
My German Shepherd slid back in this one and fell in my kids' laps, which is what the yelling was about when we were near the top. lol.
I had this sitting for essentially a year before I really started to dive into things on my Bronco. It was around the time I put those "restored" headers on that I decided to tackle all of this. My exhaust had some leaks and I needed an O2 bung, etc, for the Sniper, so I put the Sniper on and redid the entire exhaust.
I felt the 750 cfm carb was too much for the practically stock 351m and had considered getting a smaller, more off road friendly carb, but I decided to dive into the throttle body EFI direction instead and factored the cost of a new carb into my decision along with the hope that my 24/7, strong gas smell would disappear due to better fuel management. This was done after those videos were taken as well.
The Sniper setup I had required a fuel return line, so I decided to tap the sending unit and add my return there. I ran it out of gas as far as I felt comfortable with while driving and then let it idle in front of my house to finish it off. From my memory it only took like 10-15 minutes of idling for the engine to cut off, so I must have gotten it really close.
First thing's first. Gotta drop the tank!
Not good news here. It was not leaking until I dropped the skid plate and fuel tank. Like ripping a scab off a wound. Lotta pin holes. The inside of the tank was perfect though (as you can tell by my sending unit), I was bummed out.
New tank ordered and I went to town on the sending unit while I waited.
I used what I had on hand (the paint colors) and decided to paint the tank instead of leaving it with whatever delicious substance the factory coated it with (cosmoline I'm told or a similar substance, looked like vaseline). I put black paint on it and then topped it with a silver, hammer finish paint I had. I dunno, it looks alright I guess.
The skid plate had a nice big ol' dent in it (old tank had a matching dent), so I opted for a new, aftermarket skid plate to put in its place. I put the same paint treatment on it that I did on the gas tank.
I cleaned up the fuel filler neck and painted it black. I used an old, semi truck tire inner tube to make some strips to put in between the tank and the skid plate instead of whatever the factory used. It looks like they used a burlap type material and it really held in the moisture.
It was super cold out (it was probably fall or winter when I did this, I can't remember), so my paint ran a lot as you'll notice, but here's the tank and skid plate mounted up.
It was a real bitch getting it back on, but I got the filler neck back on along with a new filler hose, vent hose, and clamps.
I decided to use my factory hardline as my return line and then I ran the EFI rated fuel hose that Holley supplied with the Sniper Master Kit as my supply line. There was a small portion of the hardline that had some rubber hose, so that got replace with the EFI hose as well. I didn't know the hardline was two pieces until I got under there for this project. I loosely ran everything and zip tied it in spots so I could figure out where I wanted things.
I needed a bracket to mount my external electric fuel pump that comes with the Master Kit. So... I chopped a piece out of my old skid plate, bent the mounting flange, and then flipped it around and mounted it right in front of my gas tank. 🤷♂️ It works, I guess. Fuel system... complete.
Even though the engine was pretty disgusting, I decided to leave it alone since it appeared to run pretty well and had no noticeable vacuum leaks. Figured I wouldn't rock the boat.
Sniper in place along with spaghetti bowl of wiring. I added a fuel pressure gauge right before the line going into the Sniper. That didn't come with the kit.
Prior to putting the Sniper on the intake, though, I kept the new fuel line connected to my mechanical fuel pump and drove my Bronco the block or two over to the exhaust shop with my carb, so I could get the exhaust done and my O2 bung installed. Then it was just a matter of screwing in the O2 sensor, temp sensor, making sure the vac lines were where they needed to be, splice a couple wires, and I was good to go.
Here are the powder coated headers.
O2 bung and sensor installed.
My fuel pressure gauge conveniently cleared the factory air cleaner. Not sure how that just happened to work out. lol. I re-clocked the gauge after this pic.
One, two, skip a few steps, and here it is running. The fuel injectors are kind of noisy. They almost sound like ticking lifters, hence the name of my video.
Sound of the exhaust from my porch to the road. I think it was 2 1/4" pipes y'd into 3" with a 3" in/out magnaflow muffler and tailpipe exiting in the passenger rear corner near the bumper.
I've already mentioned that I have a Saginaw power steering pump. During the engine swap, I installed a 4 bolt steering box that I found several years earlier at the junkyard, probably from a 97 F350. The drop pitman arm on my old box fit just fine. The picture shows braided lines, but the fittings leaked, so I went with stock hoses from a Superduty.
After the engine swap was done, and after the radius arm upgrade, I decided to do the 'ambulance package' TTB steering linkage upgrade; basically thicker tie rods from heavier duty trucks. I tried to keep most of my parts Moog, for no real reason other than they were supposed to be better. Some have said that they're not what they used to be, but all the ones I received from rockauto were made in the USA. I did it with the tires on the ground, and adjusted the new parts until they 'fell in' the old holes and the alignment was just fine afterward. The picture of it up on the jacks was when I took the tires off to get clearance to grease the zerks.
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The last thing I did was to upgrade the cooling. I tried using the old auto trans cooler, but had issues, so I went with a junkyard Superduty power steering cooler. They're mounted low at 45*, so I made a bracket to make it straight 'to the wind' and mounted in on the hood latch support behind the grille.
Prior to this pic I had only taken the top off once and when that happened I literally had a stranger walking by help me take it off as my wife was not down to help me lift it off. This time I did it by myself. I was going to store the top on the bed of my truck, so I figured I'd make the transfer as simple as I could. I just lifted it up, 180'd, and walked it across to my truck and set 'er down. You'll also notice I had a bit of a load in the bed of my truck. I maneuvered carefully.
Topper stored on my truck's bed.
Time for a little cruise.
35's and no lift really give it a "stuffed" look in the wheel wells.
Took 'er through the mud a little bit. Mud is fun, but I'm 100% not a fan of the cleanup! lol. My engine temp is also not a fan of a radiator plugged with mud either. It was the only day this thing has ever ran hot as my 351m was so damn cold blooded.
Engine temp is pretty high, I wonder what it could be... Only thing it didn't tag, for whatever reason, was the Sniper.
Also managed to snag my new skid plate a little. Looks like it did it's job.
I had been storing a blown up 460 in the bed of my truck that you can see in the pics I posted where I removed the Bronco top. I was planning on resurrecting that engine and putting it into my truck, but plans changed when I found 70-71 460 in the wrecking yard and figured I could put the resurrected one into the Bronco and the newly found one into my truck.
The old 351m seemed in ok condition, but I wanted to be able to drive the Bronco long distance to off road trails and I figured I'd feel more comfortable with a fresh engine and since a 460 won't get any worse gas mileage than my 351m was getting, I may as well get the 460 power with my poor mpg. So, off to the machine shop went my salvaged parts and parts from a donor.
The short block being assembled at the machine shop.
Fully assembled and on the dyno ready to be broken in.
And an embarrassing potato quality video of a dyno pull! Yay!
So, that was neat.
I know some of you may be thinking "Why silver?" for the engine color. Well, I wanted to have the engine painted by an actual shop and have it a fancy Candy Apple Red or something like that. Kind of do the ol' switcharoo from ugly on the outside, nice(r) under the hood.
Well, I opted to spend that money elsewhere (like on the dyno) and figured I'd do a crappy home made version of Candy Apple Red. 🤷♂️ So, the silver color is a metallic aluminum engine enamel and I planned on topping it with a red anodized paint to give it more of a candy look to it.
I lifted the engine in the back of my truck once it was done at the machine shop and I sprayed it down with some red Duplicolor Metalcast spray paint. Didn't really have anywhere else to paint it, so that's where it got done. I mentioned it in my build thread at the time I painted it, but it somehow looks better and worse in person. There's a lot more depth to the color in person.
After I moved it from my inlaws shop back to my house I finished the cage (which I can't get the pictures to upload) And started on the Autofab fender supports. After those where all welded up I started mounting the fiberglass.
Next was the seats, I went with 3 mastercraft suspension seats. I'll try and get a shot of the back seat when I get home. I was able to use the factory lower sliders and make a mount to adapt the seats to them. I still have the ability so slide the seats back and forth but no longer have the tilt and slide feature. I added a rear shoulder bar behind each front seat to attach the 5 point harnesses to. I kept the original seats belts also, that way around town I can use the factory ones then the 5 point when offroad.
I was able to score a set of 5 factory Alcoa's. I took them to a local machine shop where the owner lets you use his blast cabinet. I blasted all the factory clear coat off and gave them a coat of satin black paint. I decided to try something with them and dusted them with some duplicolor gun metal gray wheel paint. They turned out pretty good and still look good to this day.