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Discussion Starter #21
Well I got some battery cables made. I needed the starter cable lengthened by about 1 1/2 feet, so I could route it under the engine perch on that side rather than right underneath the header primaries. I replaced the other cables and lengthened them a couple inches each, so I can have some slack and get them zip tied out of the way of anything. I went with 2 gauge cable instead of the 4 gauge that was on there just to make them a little more heavy duty. I am very glad I recently had the starter rebuilt, because I'm not sure I'll ever get it out again. It's a tight fit. Anyone who gets these particular headers, and probably any other headers for that matter, you'll definitely want to make sure your starter is tip top before you get it trapped in there. I'm assuming it'll be header removal whenever the time to replace it comes. Yay. I was kind of surprised, because my '75 F150 has headers on it's 460 and I can still get the starter in and out, but that's obviously a different truck and engine/trans configuration.

It snowed a few inches yet again today, so I worked on my fasteners for a little bit rather than working on my weatherstripping and lights like I had wanted. I think they'll work out. Wish I had a legit bench grinder, I'd like to take some more off the bolt head on the fasteners I'm modifying and it takes forever with what I have.



 

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Discussion Starter #22
I've got some pictures to go along with this post, but I'll have to save them for when I go to work on Monday. My computer at home doesn't like my way of doing things apparently.

I made my strategic effort to get the gas tank off and was successful. I slept nearly all day Friday once I got off work in the morning, so I wasn't able to do anything until today. The road was clear enough and other than the temp being in the 20's I was set. The forecast said we'd get snow around 2pm, it started at about 11am. Oh well. I started at about 10:30am and had everything off by about noon. I don't know if the filler hose was the original one from the factory, but whoever put it on was an asshole. The clamps for it had the screws pointing up into the body so I wasn't able to reach them. I had to cut the hoses off with my finest Chinese steak knife. I'll make an attempt later to get the remnants off the filler neck, probably use a razor blade and try to slice it enough under the clamp to where I can turn it and get to the screws.

I noticed a couple of bad things once I got under the tank to take it off. At some point in this Broncos life it was rode hard and abused, which I've been noticing as I work on different areas. The skid plate, and the tank of course, have nice matching dents in them. I mean a huge dent. Like maybe 8-10" around and at least a couple inches deep. Must have been one heck of an impact on a rock. I guess this would make a good advertisement for a thicker skid plate, preferably not sheet metal and more like the one for the t-case. There are some areas of rust on the tank and it seems to be in spots where the skid plate sat against the tank. I'm going to try and wire wheel it off after hosing the tank off and hope it's nothing major. I'll probably paint up the tank and see if I can sandwich something between the tank and skid plate to prevent future rust. I popped off the retaining ring holding the sending unit in and begged to catch a break, please let it be clean. It was. It looks brand new on the inside, so I guess I dodged the biggest bullet out of the fuel tank woes. The sending unit looks great. I always see nasty stuff online when people take vids and pics of their tanks when working on them, so it was nice to see mine clean.

Now comes the point where I decide where to put in my fuel return for the Holley Sniper. I've seen people drill the tank. The instructions on the sniper suggest drilling the sending unit and putting it there if possible. I'll have to get the pieces for the return out of the box and see if the sending unit has enough room for the return. I'd much rather drill out the sending unit than to mess with the tank, but I'll do what I gotta do.
 

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Discussion Starter #23
Oh yeah, I also learned that my fuel gauge is quite accurate. I let the Bronco idle in front of my house yesterday until it ran out of gas, which it did with the needle sitting just barely past the line for the E. I've kept the tank low, so it didn't take too long, maybe 15 minutes of running. Once I got the tank off there was maybe half a gallon of gas in it at most, just a little sloshing around. I know that's not a big deal, but I've heard some people with the 33 gallon tank complain that their trucks have quite a bit of gas in them when it hits E and they never really know when it would be close to running out of gas. Just thought it was nice to know that when mine is on E I better be pulling into a gas station or have a full gas can with me.
 

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Discussion Starter #24
I've come to a crossroads. I was in the process of cleaning up my tank and discovered it has tiny holes in the bottom of it. I didn't bother to clean up the whole tank to find out how many are in it, but after cleaning a small portion and finding a couple that was enough for me to stop what I was doing.

I can either attempt to repair the holes or get a new tank. I don't really like the idea of repairing a tank that's already rusted enough to make holes. If it was a perfectly clean tank with a hole, maybe. Just sucks because it's a relatively small area that's badly rusted, the rest of the tank looked pretty dang good. If I get a new tank I'll have to pound out the skid plate as well and hope it's straight enough to not cause problems with the new tank.

Anyone got a recommendation on a tank? Rockauto lists a couple brands. I know JBG has some. I suppose I could get a new skid plate from JBG if I really wanted to drop the money on it. How much do I really like this Bronco?? lol
 

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Discussion Starter #25
Here are some pics from my recent adventures. I'm sure a lot of guys here are very experienced wrench artists, but this was my first attempt at a fuel tank removal. My only jack, which is the finest 1.5 ton aluminum jack from Harbor Freight, can not reach the tank. Fortunately the tank doesn't weigh that much as I later found out. When I bought the jack I was using it for my '88 Civic, which needless to say, sits a lot closer to the ground and is much lighter than the Bronco. I do not recommend lifting the front end of your Bronco by the differential with this particular jack, it will cry tears of hydraulic fluid, so for the time being its one corner at a time. In the future, as soon as my needs demand it, I will up my game to a 3 ton jack and some nice and tall 12 ton jack stands specifically for this vehicle.

Look at that sweet dent. Long story short, there were some rough areas on the tank that I thought I'd be able to refurbish, but apparently whatever that material is that was in between the tank and the skid plate held in moisture and ate several small holes. It wasn't leaking whenever I actually drove the Bronco and I believe that was due to the pressure from the skid plate and when I removed everything I essentially ripped off a scab on this Bronco's skinned knee.

I currently have a new tank on the way and it should be here in a couple of days. I'm going to fab up my return for the tank and then I'll paint the tank to protect it. I'm not 100% on what I'll use to cushion between the tank and the skid plate to prevent future rust issues with the new tank, but I'm leaning towards cutting up an inner tube and using strips from that as a cushion/spacer. I'll probably hit up one of the tire shops that service semis and see if I can get something heavy duty from them. Hopefully I can get all of the fuel storage and delivery stuff out of the way by early next week. I have to work this whole weekend (fri-sun), so I'm hoping I can have everything prepped and ready for install on Monday.













 

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Discussion Starter #26
I went and enjoyed the snow with my partners-in-crime the next day after it fell the night I took the tank off. I hope to be able to take them with me around in the Bronco this summer with the top off. They love going for rides.


 

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Seeing those pictures makes me want to drop my tank and take a look. I’m not having issues yet, but I have a feeling there is some corrosion I can’t see. Great looking Pups too!
 

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Discussion Starter #28
Thanks!

Yeah, I was really surprised with the shape of the tank. The filler hose has leaked since I got the rig, so replacing that was on my to do list anyway. I knew it was a possibility the tank was trashed since I've seen lots of heavily corroded tanks from these older trucks on the forums I frequent. I just thought I got lucky until I really took a closer look. I mean, you can see how little issue there is with the top of the tank.

Had everything been salvageable I was going to, at the very least, replace the cushioning material that was there with something better and possibly add more drain holes to the skid plate to prevent moisture build up.
 

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Discussion Starter #29
Got to work on the old sending unit. My goal was to install the fuel return bulkhead for the EFI into the sending unit rather than drilling the tank. It took a lot more modifying than I anticipated (you'll see what I mean lol), BUT I think what I ended up with will work. I loosely assembled the sending unit to take some pics and to test fit it in the old tank to make sure everything cleared, but took it all apart as I'll be painting the top of the sending unit before the final install. I can absolutely understand why people would rather just put a hole in the tank and be done with it, but like Sinatra said... I did it myyyyy waaaaaaay.

The tanque de gasolina arrived. Spectra Premium F8A. This is the tank without the hole for the evap line as mine is a '78 and not a California Bronco. It's nice and shiny, comes with the sending unit retaining ring and gasket, and made in Canada which is probably much better than made in China. I'm sure those hoseheads make a quality tank. They ship it with some sort of coating on it as it has an oily residue all over it that I'll have to wash off before I get to painting it. It was 19 degrees this morning when I took the kids to school and it didn't get too warm throughout the day, so painting it outside doesn't sound like such a hot idea. Not sure my wife would be thrilled with me painting it indoors, but I'll get it figured out. We're making progress in the right direction.
















 

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You're doing some nice work here. I've experienced a lot of the troubles you have experienced. Keep plugging away you will get it.

I've cut a fuel line in half and used that to create space between the tank and the skid plate. An old inner tube is good but it doesn't really allow for the air to get in there and dry out. Also if you pick up some debris (most likely will) and you want to wash it out you have a little more space to be successful. Good luck and keep plugging away.
 

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Discussion Starter #32
Thanks. I agree on creating a gap between the tank and skid plate to aid with clear out. I had a lot of dried mud (dirt for the lay man) in between the old tank and skid plate that I tried to wash out prior to me dropping the tank. It didn't work so well. The idea with the inner tube was to layer it enough to get a gap plus having the cushion properties of the rubber. We'll see what happens once I get around to that part.
 

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If you use a sending unit from 89-90 bronco it is the same as a 78/79 bronco but it's set up for efi. change the pump for higher pressure one and you are good to go.
 

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Discussion Starter #34
If you use a sending unit from 89-90 bronco it is the same as a 78/79 bronco but it's set up for efi. change the pump for higher pressure one and you are good to go.
That is true. I could spend another 60-70 bucks and buy another sending unit and if this one falls apart as I'm putting it in, I'll certainly do that. At this point though, I'm trying to save a few dollars where I can, so I can put them in other places and boy have I been putting them in other places. lol
 

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Discussion Starter #35
I've gotten most of my painting done. The weather has been back and forth with the rain and I have nowhere to do it indoors, so I said eff it, set up my little card table, and started painting it all on my front porch. It's less than ideal, but nothing is getting wet as I paint. It's just cold with high relative humidity which paint does not like.

Originally I had planned on using the old tank and hitting it with some POR15 before putting it back on. That didn't happen obviously. I already had the POR15 (one pint, really goes a long way) and in the spirit of using what I have already, I used that, and as a top coat some spray paint I had sitting around collecting literal dust for another project. The new gas tank comes coated already (Ni-Terne), but I wanted to put an extra layer of protection since I plan to use this Bronco as a secondary vehicle primary off-road.

I removed the oily coating that comes on the tank. I'm not sure what it is, has vaseline like properties and color. It took a while to get that crap off. All things said, I got a less than ideal paint job, but it'll definitely do. I went with a couple layers of black POR15 and finished it with my lovely hammer finish silver spray paint which, as I had hoped, hid a lot of the imperfections in my black paint job. I painted the POR15 by hand with a cheap 2" brush and you really have to work the paint to get it to stick to something other than say... a rusty frame. I'd say one coat of black took about 3 hours to dry and that's dry to the touch with no tack left. Each coat of the silver took about 30 minutes before I could tap my fingers on it and not have paint come off. I learned, a little late into it, that you really get that hammer effect if you go slow and spray a LOT of paint per stroke. Like enough paint to where you think it's gonna run (like my black paint did), that's what it likes. Prior to doing that I was just getting a flat silver paint job, the directions did not mention any certain way to spray it. Lesson learned.






 

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Discussion Starter #36
I also went ahead and bought a new skid plate. If I spent enough time I could probably pound out the massive dent in the old one, grind and wire wheel it, paint it, and put it back on, but I have no desire for that honestly. Sometimes doing that is a lot more practical for me, like when I cleaned and painted my transfer case skid plate and my drive shafts when I rebuilt those. Don't worry though, I plan I using the old skid plate for something else on the Bronco. It'll get chopped up and re-purposed for my electric fuel pump bracket that I'll need.

This will probably irk some people, because I'm not a fabricator and don't have equipment to do it and I always get people who say stuff like "Why don't you just build yer own?" as they type from their garage with a post lift, welder, and sheet metal brake. I one day hope to have that once I get out of the current house I'm renting and into something I own. So I took the easy way out and bought the one from JBG. Pricey? You bet. Good quality? We'll see. Would I rather have a NOS skid plate? I dunno, honestly. This one is "deeper" than the old one, so I'll probably find it easier to create a gap between the tank and plate which is what I want. I'll have to measure them again and post pics of that so you can get an idea. The JBG is about an inch taller than the old one from what I remember measuring the other day. It was like 7" vs 8". I like the fact that the JBG one has several drain holes in the center section. I also like the fact that it's made out of galvannealed steel. Being that it's galvannealed, my painting process worked a lot better than it did with the gas tank as far as adhesion goes. I still may hit it with another layer of the hammer finish silver as I painted the skid plate before I realized how to get that hammered look I was after and ran out. I only ended up with one little corner of the hammer look. It doesn't really matter, but I'll know what it looks like if no one else ever does. Overall I think it'll do well for me. I don't think I'll have to mess with the tank for corrosion issues for a little bit, which will be nice.






 

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Rear Window motor fuse location

I have a 78 Bronco as well and am struggling to find the fuse that powers the tailgate window motor. Were you able to find the fuse location for the rear window motor when you were working on your tailgate issues? I have a feeling my fuse is bad, but I can't find the fuse. I have seen some references on threads in this site to a 20amp fuse located at the starter relay, but I am having zero luck finding it. Any advice?
 

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Discussion Starter #38
The only fuses I've ever replaced on this Bronco have been under the dash in the main fuse block above the e-brake. I tested every fuse slot to make sure they were working. I just used a test light to see if the light came on. Not all of the fuses get power with the key off, so you have to cycle the key to the run position to test them all. I think the easiest way to test for power to your tailgate is to pull off the driver's side tail light and pop open the connector that supplies power to the tailgate. It's a tight fit to get the test light probe into the connector holes, but it'll tell you whether or not power is reaching the tailgate and it's constant power, so no key is needed in the ignition.
 

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Discussion Starter #39
I got the gas tank and skid plate on yesterday and ran my fuel line for the EFI. It was a fight, but they're in there. I guess if it were easy then everyone would do it, right?

My routing of the EFI fuel line is temporary as I didn't install the electric fuel pump and all the other goodies quite yet. I still need my O2 bung installed and I was saving that for when I got the exhaust completed rather than using the one Holley supplied that's just clamped in place. I'm taking the Bronco back over to the shop that did the headers on Wednesday and I'm gonna have them finish out the exhaust now that the tank and skid plate are in place and I've made up my mind on exactly what I want.

In order to get it the two blocks over to their shop, I've hooked the EFI hose that I've routed the length of the Bronco to my mechanical pump and hooked the fuel return bulkhead fitting to the old steel line. I'll be using the factory steel line as a return since it'll definitely handle the low psi and the kit doesn't come with enough hose to go both ways unless you're setting it up on a smart car. At least at this point it'll just be a matter of making a few cuts and putting in the two filters and the electrical fuel pump for which I still need to make a bracket. Then I'll re-route the portion in the engine compartment to best fit the throttle body since most of it is coiled up and zip tied above my washer reservoir.
 

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Discussion Starter #40
I removed the filler neck to remove the remains of the hoses I cut off. I didn't realize how simple it is to remove it. There's two bolts holding the gas door on, which also hold the plastic part of the filler neck. There's one phillips head screw and then there is a clamp on the neck holding it to a little metal hanger of sorts on the actual body. There's a grommet or whatever it is, that holds the metal neck to the plastic part, but I wasn't about to try and pry that off and ruin it. The neck was rusty enough for me to decide to do what I seem to be doing a lot of these days... wire wheel and paint. It cleaned up really well and then I hit it with a couple coats of the black spray paint I've used on my drive shafts and my transfer case skid plate. The black really makes all the dents pop now. Beautiful. As you can see, there's a lot of room between the frame and the body for the filler hose to fit through. The hose, which is the same one for my F100 apparently (I bought two), comes with that metal sleeve around it to keep the center flattened out. I took that off while fighting the hose onto the filler neck and decided it wasn't needed since the opening between the frame was so large and would probably allow for easier filling. FWIW, the old one didn't have the metal sleeve either.

My gas tank is looking like an NBA player, lotta running in the paint. Like I said, it's on there, I don't care anymore. I cleaned the area of the frame that the skid plate bolts to and put some POR15 on it the day before I installed everything so my skid plate flange wouldn't immediately rust. Also used new grade 8 hardware to keep with the theme of non-rusted parts going together.

I got an inner tube from a tire shop and cut some strips and laid them down to cushion the tank. I didn't bother to layer them thick. I think there's enough gap between the tank and skid plate as it is. I just cut the strips freehand about 1 1/2" - 2" wide and laid them in place.

I killed my battery trying to get the line primed with gas. I was attempting not to crank the engine too much, because the last thing I wanted to do was kill my starter that's now buried under some headers. What I ended up doing, right before the battery died (I think it was weak to begin with), was take out the electric fuel pump for the Holley Sniper and attach a couple quickly made leads to it and use that to prime the line. Took about 10 seconds and I wish I had started that way rather than cranking the engine and filling the carb's fuel bowls by hand. If you work on or troubleshoot fuel systems a lot, I would highly recommend keeping a cheap electric pump around. It was really that easy, hooked the wires to my jump starter, aimed the hose into a fuel can, then turned the switch on my jump starter for a few seconds of glory. Done.

I went to take my battery out to have it tested (it's bad) and noticed some of the PO's handywork. Gee, I wonder what this board is doing here. OH, OK. The battery tray is half gone. lol Shit, so I hit the JY today and snagged a tray off a mid 70's supercab truck. I ran out of time before I had to come to work, but I'm going to finish cleaning it up and use some of my remaining POR15 on it before putting my new battery in. I splurged again and went for a deep cycle Yellowtop Optima with top and side terminals. I plan to use the side terminals exclusively for the EFI and any power requirements it has. I'll have to lengthen my positive cable going to the solenoid a little (it barely reaches, but fits) since the posts are swapped in polarity compared to the old, "correct" battery. I keep justifying all these purchases knowing that if I decide I really effin hate this Bronco 6-12 months from now, I can literally take most of my upgrades and put them on my F100. The gas tank and skid plate will swap right over along with the EFI. I'm hoping I don't fall out of love, but ya never know.





















 
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