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Old 08-13-2014, 04:11 AM
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Time To Do Some Mods!

Over the last few weeks/months, I've been collecting parts from various vendors in anticipation of making some improvements to the truck. Now that most of the parts have arrived, I've parked the truck and began the work. Here is a list of the mods I have currently planned:

New Spectra Fuel Tanks
Westin Step Bars
HPX Crossover Line
Tru-Cool Max Trans Cooler
Upgraded (larger) Trans Cooler Lines w/ Bypass
Fuel Line Check Valve Delete Fittings
New Water Pump
203 Degree Thermostat
Tony Wildman Tunes
Fender Flares
Trans Fluid Replacement

Yesterday, I removed the stock trans cooler in preparation for the Tru-Cool. This unit was recommended to me by Cary @ CT Performance. I decided to eliminate the stock unit all together over concerns that it may not be working correctly (due to becoming restricted), which would ultimately limit the effectiveness of the Tru-Cool Unit. Besides that, I can't imagine that it would be at all necessary to keep the stock cooler considering the capabilities of the Tru-Cool.

Tru-Cool Max LPD37491
Amazon.com: Tru-Cool Max LPD47391 47391 Low Pressure Drop Transmission Oil Cooler: Automotive Amazon.com: Tru-Cool Max LPD47391 47391 Low Pressure Drop Transmission Oil Cooler: Automotive







Last night, I removed the front fuel tank. I wanted to shift over to this task so that I could inspect the tank internals to see if I needed to order more parts before the weekend. Happy I did! I got the tank out and inspected the sending unit and pickup screen, which all appeared to fine. Upon closer inspection, though, the pickup screen is missing the small red siphon valve/fitting that goes into the side. So in other words, fuel was getting sucked in through a large hole in the side, not the bottom of the foot. I think this could create cavitation and turbulence in the fuel flow, which certainly could affect performance and fuel efficiency. I get better mileage out of the rear tank, which I attributed to a leaking front tank. While I still believe that to be a culprit, the broken pickup foot likely doesn't help either. So...I'll get 2 new ones on order this morning. For the new tanks, I painted a coat of underbody rust preventative on both sides, actually, 2 coats on the bottom. I think this is merely a helpful measure, but paint rarely adheres well to galvanized surfaces over the long haul. I cleaned the surface off with denatured alcohol, so that should help. I live in the south, and this truck came from the north. It's gone 18 years on the original tanks, so I'm not real worried about it rusting out again.

Spectra Rear Tank F1G
Amazon.com: Spectra Premium F1G Fuel Tank for Ford Truck: Automotive Amazon.com: Spectra Premium F1G Fuel Tank for Ford Truck: Automotive
Spectra Front Tank F6C (price has gone up since I bought mine)
Amazon.com: Spectra Premium F6C Fuel Tank for Ford Pickup: Automotive Amazon.com: Spectra Premium F6C Fuel Tank for Ford Pickup: Automotive




I put the sending unit into the new tank so that it wouldn't get damaged.

The existing tank, when removed, had about 7 gallons left in it. That was/is a little concerning to me, considering that the dash gauge read about 1/8 full. I checked the sending unit in the tank before I removed it, and the screen sits at the bottom, while the float assembly does indeed rest on top. The float actually goes down maybe 1/4" into the fuel, but that shouldn't be causing such inaccurate gauge readings. Any thoughts on this???

And here is a picture of the parked truck, just waiting to be back on the road again!


EDIT: I could literally beat the PO for installing the 5" exhaust. That's a huge pain in the rear to work around under the truck. Those dang long clamp bolts are tearing me up! But otherwise, its a sweeeeeet exhaust

Last edited by majorgator; 08-13-2014 at 08:23 AM.
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Old 08-13-2014, 06:11 AM
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Nice work! Where do these fittings go? Fuel Line Check Valve Delete Fittings
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Old 08-13-2014, 06:24 AM
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Quote:
Where do these fittings go? Fuel Line Check Valve Delete Fittings
I'm told that they go between the filter bowl and the heads. One for each line. They're meant to replace the existing inline check valve fitting, and the purpose is to allow greater flow (supposedly enough to feed Stage 2's). Riff Raff sells them, and they claim to be an easy install. Quite frankly, I haven't searched for their location yet.
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Old 08-13-2014, 06:01 PM
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Got a little more done tonight. Installed the HPX crossover. The fit was pretty good, but off just enough that it took a little effort. For those who are doing, I would suggest installing it on the right side (passenger) of the motor first, which makes it a little easier to manipulate the tubing.

HPX Crossover
Stainless Steel HPX 94-97 - Riffraff Diesel Performance



Got the Tru-Cool unit lined up and partially installed. There are several holes that you can use in this area without having to make new ones. The mounting hardware they provide is actually more helpful than I anticipated. I probably would have gotten this done tonight, except the dinner bell rang. For anyone else looking at this, make sure to install the connector nipples before you put this in place.




Bushwacker Street Flares arrived today. Got them from Amazon. So much money for something that seems so cheaply made. But they actually fit perfectly.

Last edited by majorgator; 08-14-2014 at 04:36 AM.
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Old 08-15-2014, 05:11 AM
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Rear tank came out last night after a great deal of frustration. What a huge PITA that was. I was about 10 minutes shy of starting to unbolt the bed and yanking it off. Ford could have made this a much easier process if they would have given 6" to 8" more fuel line. I ended up having to remove the fuel fill line from the bed side to the first coupling just to get enough flexibility to get one arm in there, and peek through a little tiny hole so I could see what I was doing. Also had to take a grinder and cut off wheel to the rear skid plate bolts. The heads were too rusted and ended up stripping.

Once I got the skid plates off, I could easily see a slow, goopy drip coming from the tank. I used a nail and hammer to pop a hole and drain the fuel. It had a about 6 gallons in there, despite the gauge reading close to 1/8 full.


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Old 08-16-2014, 05:33 AM
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Love it, i'm enjoying this one.
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Old 08-16-2014, 07:01 AM
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So what did you do with the rest of your day after that stuff was done? Paint the flares?
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Old 08-16-2014, 03:34 PM
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Quote:
So what did you do with the rest of your day after that stuff was done? Paint the flares?
I have a serious self-diagnosed case of activity-based ADHD...LOL. Hey looks like the grass needs to be mowed. I need to move the cars so I can mow. Dang, do I need to change the oil in the truck? Better clear out a space in the shop to do this...hmmm...now looks like a good time to put these tools up. Let's turn the lights on so I can see better. Shoot, I need to replace those bulbs. Off to Lowes...wait, wasn't I suppose to me mowing the grass???

Really, though, due to so many activities, I have to get short spurts of work in. Fortunately, I work from home about 75% of the time! it's easy for me to find a few minutes here and there. And no, the paint for the flares hasn't arrived yet.

Attempted to do the water pump today, but apparently the fan clutch wrench I borrowed from the local auto parts store was bent up pretty good by someone and they wouldn't stay in place. I got frustrated with it and said "screw the water pump". It ain't broke anyway. Just went ahead and replaced the thermostat though. I used the 203 degree thermostat from DieselSite and new upper housing: http://www.dieselsite.com/dieselsite203thermostat.aspx

Also got the rear fuel tank back in place. First I replaced the fuel pickup foot ion the sending unit (got it from the dealership for only a few dollars more than online). The old sending unit fit up fairly well in the spectra tanks. Just had to modify the tabs a little bit. The tank re-installed WAAAAY easier than it came out. Hardest part was getting the retaining clips back in the fuel lines. Hopefully I'll get the skid plates and front tank back in tomorrow.
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Old 08-20-2014, 03:19 AM
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The rear fuel tank is DONE. I am so relieved that I'm done dealing with that issue. No fun at all. The spare tire isn't going back on anytime soon, so this is how its going to look for now.




Also got the new transmission cooler lines installed and completed the connections to the Tru-Cool Max cooler. I bought new, larger trans cooler lines and bypass from Cary @ CT Performance. I had some questions about the installation, which he quickly and sufficiently answered. Basically, I removed the smaller (5/16" I think) stock trans cooler lines and replaced them with larger (3/8") trans cooler lines. The bypass is installed as a safety measure and also for cold-weather I use. For anyone that's looking at installing the Tru-Cool cooler, it comes with about 4 or 5 feet of 23/64 trans cooler hose. Throw that in the trash and buy 3/8" hose, as it fits up better on the larger cooler lines. You wouldn't think that the 1/64" difference makes it that much better, but it truly does. I also replaced all the trans cooler hoses (as advised by Cary) and eliminated the inline filter/screen. I bought 8 feet of hose, but you can easily do this with 6 feet. The new lines dont' fit up as well as the stock lines, especially if you have a custom exhaust, but they're easy to manipulate just enough to get it done. In my case, I wasn't able to re-use the stock tube guides next to the oil pan (in front of the starter), so you have to be a little creative to get them held in place. The first picture below is of the rear trans cooler line connection. The second picture is on the front of the trans and the third picture is where they terminate into the hoses on the front. Hardest part of the whole ordeal was removing the old hoses and rerouting the new ones. The new cooler lines ended up close to the exhaust, but there's at least 1/4" clearance all the way around, and the exhaust can't hit it in the event that it moves around.

edit: It was a little messy because all the lines had trans fluid in them. When you remove the lines from the side of the tranny, it will seep a good amount of ATF out as well. Just be prepared. I like using big sheets of cardboard under my truck when I'm doing stuff like this, but you'll also need a small pale.




Last edited by majorgator; 08-20-2014 at 03:25 AM.
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Old 08-20-2014, 05:36 AM
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Tank option - get some longer bolts (or all-thread / studs) and the actual straps for the tank, and some 1" spacers, extra washers and nuts. Mount the tank using the straps, then slip the spacers on, then attach the skid plates with another set of nuts. Washers in between where appropriate. This eliminates the "sandwich" effect of the tank sitting on the plates, which is where road cr@p builds up and rusts the tank.

Irwin, Craftsman, Lisle, even HF make rounded-head sockets for situations like this.

And PAINT those skid plates !
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