Suspension: There are a few routes here.
1) Stay with the Bronco's factory axles, but you will need beefier springs in the front.
2) Take the axles off the donor truck and swap them onto the bronco.
-The 250 has the D50 TTB with leafs in the front (from what I hear)
-The 350 has a solid D60 in the front with leafs.
3) Rear axles. Again you can stay with the stock if you aren't gunna powerhouse the crap out of it. (Guy at broncorama had it that way.)
-I was told that the 80-86 bronco's with a 9" rear were the beefiest because it had a thick 31spine rear end.
- Get a D60 or 10.25 rear to take the torque.
Engine/Engine Bay: Clearly you will be taking the PSD from the donor. Since the bronco frame is the same as the 250 (and 350?) the engine mounts will line up with each other. (Many people have said so.) It may require a little bit of tinkering with the firewall though depending on a downpipe I believe and turbo clearance.
- You will need to use the insulation or get your own for against the firewall due to more heat.
- You will need the core support from the PS truck because the radiator is larger.
-You will need the cross member from the PS truck. The 460/PSD share the same x-member, but I don't think it will work with a small block x-member. I think if it does you will have to patch the pre-cut whole for the oil filter.
-Either the E4OD or ZF-5 from behind the diesel is required. The bell housing and shift points are different from gas to diesel.
-I believe they make a controller for an automatic transmission if your donor comes with a manual, but you want an automatic instead. (don't quote me on that.)
I believe that I read that all Ford t-cases have the same bolt pattern. (not sure on that one.) and I have also read that, for example my BW 1356 behind my E4OD will bolt up to a ZF-5, so I believe if you have a good t-case it will bolt behind the diesel trans even though the t-case they have is a BW1345?
Interior: I believe the pedals from the PSD have to go into the new truck because the PS is electronically controlled throttle? Also I was told by the guy at Broncorama that they had to do some fab work regarding where the computer sets behind the dash. (He bought his complete, built by actual Ford technicians.)
I know that this is a difficult swap and costs quite some $$$, but I would rather have a 7.3L then a cummins.
Couple random thoughts:
Run the eight lug axles. u joint sizing will be bigger on new power train, creates a ******* drive shaft. Look for the solid front end, will be easier, but I think they were both D50s. I wouldn't shy away from a manual donor truck either. Your Broncoshould be somewhat accommodating of the pedal assemblies and your more likely to find a manual still in good working order, and yes PSD are fly by wire. Fire wall clearance may be aided with a1" body lift perhaps. not sure on t case fitment but I doubt their interchangeable. Get donor truck with trans you want and use provided t case. A Cummins weights every bit what PSD does, around 1,000 lbs±. Far as reliability goes, yes PSD can easily go the distance but it has a lot to due with how it's taken care of. And fluke issues can always arise over time. One thing I would look into as well is early PSD I think had mechanical lift pumps and an electric one was a common upgrade, may be use your in tank pump for purpose.
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I already planned on using the donor trucks 8 lug axles, no doubt about it. I've found a few and most are automatics, but they are quite high mileage (which normally wouldn't bother me) except the truck looks like hell which makes me believe maintenance wasn't of there top concern. So this leads me my next question - how much would just a completely bone stock PSD rebuild cost? I've seen shops offering to overhaul everything from spraying the wires to rebuilding the turbo for $5900 which is WAY out of my price range especially for a donor truck that is only gunna cost me $2,000.
As for the body lift, the guy I met at broncorama had a 3" on his, but I feel that with some fab work I might be able to not have to use a body lift mostly because I don't like the look of them.
Manual vs Auto. I'd rather have the automatic transmission because, well honestly I don't know how to drive a manual. (but I'm not afraid to learn so I've been considering it. The only thing I don't like is the lengthy shifter which is sadly required.)
As for upgrades. I've read about switching to electric fuel. There is another upgrade about switching a solenoid? in one of the computers to one that allows more electrical flow increasing power. And this guy:
I am still a believer in swapping the body to an F350 chassis and making the adjustment to the wheel base. fuel and brake lines are easily modified. If you found similar year truck as your bronco it's an easy dash swap and you have all your electronics, and all correct lights and guages along with accurate odometer.
F350 frame definitely stronger to handle the torque of the engine. I have bent Bronco frames with 700hp big blocks, what a mess to straighten back out and then box in.
Keep in mind that semi truck frames get lengthened and shortened all the time. Done a few myself. I think it would save a tone of overall work for you.
Yes I agree that it is after all much easier to just shorten a 350 frame then to swap it all over and box in a Wronco frame, but if you don't do it the hard way how are you gunna learn?
My only problem with cutting the frame is rewelding it back together because I only know of 2 people who MIGHT have the skill to do so, so that it is trustworthy again.
I mean if I switch it all to the bronco and box it in then I can always just use zero rates to readjust any issues with the axles where as with the frame it's a lot of making sure it is all precise and square.
Ya but you don't wanna do a lot of grinding on a structural weld. I mean cutting the frame seems decent enough with the right tools. Then you gotta box the weld spot and adjust the body mounts correctly.
The couple frames I boxed we used long pieces and cut them in the shape of the frame. Then welded to the inside of the rails, with proper clearances and a good weld all you have to do is clean up the edges. Think of it more of filling in a gap over a butt weld.
With a frame shorten we have always ground a V into the plates that get butted together and fill the area, grind back smooth. From there we would either put a plate on the inside for strength or a diamond shaped piece on the outside. In one instance we actually did both. Another time we just boxed that little section of frame and it was good to hand the fuel pump and remote filters on.
Most of the body mounts would be in the same locations, might have to move a couple for the extra on the bronco body. But not that big of deal for that.
I've been talking about it with my dad and I think that I might just go with cutting a 350 frame then setting my body on it. I have to talk with my good friend who has a lot of experience with frame cutting and see what he says on it because honestly it sounds like its much easier to just put a body on a frame then an entire drivetrain, tanks and lines under my bronco.
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