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Old 12-04-2014, 02:42 PM   #1
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1997 E350 3.7L turbo international ford/champion conversion

Greetings friends my name is everyone.
Realized, this post is misplaced so be aware, ****not a coach conversion***


1997 Ford e350 3.7L turbo diesel power stroke, beginning the process. Eventual wvo planned, I'd like to run on hemp biodiesel one day.

The bus has 115xxx miles, was driven on a government compound short distances for many years, until purchased by a local band, and used to travel the east coast as a tour bus for a few ten thousand miles, now, owned by me, I am watching over her for now.

Pics

Looking for some information about the coolant system. I've driven it a bit since I bought it earlier this year, she drives well, obviously has some old fuel in her tank, I've run some of it through, though ke know she doesn't like it, it's got a quarter tank or less in it now, does anyone reccommend to add good diesel on top, or run it through as is? My fuses are sporadic if at all, I'm looking for a map of the electrical system of this vehicle..

the coolant system appears to have a leaky or busted hose because it spilled out all under the drivers side door, basically under the ac fan unit, most likely a leak or busted Jose there..
Now I've taken the inside ac unit down from overhead and there are a number of hoses and cables to disconnect or change, I'm looking for information on the map of the coolant hoses, removed/clamp the ones I won't need, but I need to know which is which,
It'd be nice to find a map of my engine, perhaps these questions will be answered with a Haynes manual. Is there a better resource out there?

Thanks.all.One
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Old 12-05-2014, 03:18 PM   #2
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Re: 1997 E350 3.7L turbo international ford/champion convers

Welcome!
I'll get some fun poking out of the way first:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Friendofplants
Greetings friends my name is everyone.
Really? That's a strange name.. It must get confusing when your friends are trying to get your attention in a crowd!
Just messing with ya

Quote:
Originally Posted by Friendofplants
1997 Ford e350 3.7L turbo diesel power stroke, beginning the process. Eventual wvo planned, I'd like to run on hemp biodiesel one day.
For clarification, sounds like you have a 7.3l Powerstroke in there... Someone will correct you eventually, might as well get it out of the way.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Friendofplants
the coolant system appears to have a leaky or busted hose because it spilled out all under the drivers side door, basically under the ac fan unit, most likely a leak or busted Jose there..
Hmmm.. I'd suspect a leaking heater core if it's coming from around the cabin AC unit. I don't actually know how the E350s are put together, but that seems like a reasonable assumption. Can you smell the coolant while inside the bus?
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Old 12-06-2014, 04:02 PM   #3
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Re: 1997 E350 3.7L turbo international ford/champion convers

Welcome
I moved your post for you
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Old 12-10-2014, 10:36 PM   #4
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Re: 1997 E350 3.7L turbo international ford/champion convers

Your coolant may be leaking from either of the rubber hoses going back to the rear heater. My hoses (both heater and AC) ran along the driver's side frame rail. If you pop off the engine cover you can clamp off the coolant hoses where they come off the engine to keep from draining the coolant while you repair or remove the hoses.

There are two chassis fuse blocks, one with heavy duty fuses and relays in the engine compartment and another to the left of the steering column under the dash with the 5 - 20 amp fuses. There will be another fuse block strictly for the add on bus stuff like interior lights and wheelchair lift. You can download a Ford owner's manual for your year that will show what the chassis fuses protect. Check with the company that did the bus conversion for info on their wiring and fuses. I e-mailed Eldorado my bus VIN and they sent me some wiring diagrams.

There are two fuel strainers on the fuel pickup in the gas tank that tend to get gunked up. I sprayed mine clean with brake cleaner. To get at them there should be an access hatch in the floor back by the rear axle. You'll need the Ford fuel line quick disconnect tools to disconnect the fuel lines in order to remove the fuel pickup. There is another fuel/water filter in the fuel bowl behind the air filter at the front of the engine. If either of them get plugged you'll be going nowhere so a little maintenance now may prevent a breakdown later.

Keep your fuel tank full to avoid getting condensation in the tank, especially in winter. Diesel fuel doesn't have any alcohol in it so it doesn't absorb water like gasoline does. Water in the tank can grow algae which does a great job of gumming up your filters. I ran a few cans of Seafoam through mine to clean the fuel system and injectors. If you get algae in the fuel there are additives to kill that off too.

Here's one of the heater hoses after removing the "T"

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Old 12-18-2014, 04:48 PM   #5
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Re: 1997 E350 3.7L turbo international ford/champion convers

Nice project you got started there. I'm looking at getting one very soon myself, have a few specific shuttle buses I'm going to go look at in the next week. Good luck with your conversion and I'll be following.
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Old 01-04-2015, 09:30 PM   #6
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excellent feedback, much gratitude.
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Old 01-18-2015, 06:10 PM   #7
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Moving along nicely with cleaning out and rebuilding body frame interior for the first year with the berserker. Preparing to activate coolant system with modified clamped auxilary hoses


Quote:
Originally Posted by roach711 View Post
Your coolant may be leaking from either of the rubber hoses going back to the rear heater.
This is certainly the case. Planning to keep heater, looks like it will need hose patched or new directly behind drivers seat.


Quote:
Originally Posted by roach711 View Post
There are two fuel strainers on the fuel pickup in the gas tank that tend to get gunked up. I sprayed mine clean with brake cleaner. To get at them there should be an access hatch in the floor back by the rear axle. You'll need the Ford fuel line quick disconnect tools to disconnect the fuel lines in order to remove the fuel pickup. There is another fuel/water filter in the fuel bowl behind the air filter at the front of the engine. If either of them get plugged you'll be going nowhere so a little maintenance now may prevent breakdown later.
It is incredibly tough to access the fuel filter behind the air filter unit. Is there an easier way? How do we get these things outta there?

Also, I'm curious about the strainers you speak of. There does not seem to be access to the fuel tank from inside the bus, will I need access to the top of the fuel tank to clean this?
If this is something that will need to be accessed regularly, I may create an access hatch as I'm similarly planning for side battery access, as this is also in a tough spot.

In regards to fuel filters, motorcraft required? I see in the manual it says to use motorcraft and I've heard other filters might not fit. Any recommendations on choosing brands for quality, performance, longevity of air filters, fuel filters, other general maintenance quirks.

Another question about improving my gas mileage. A friend once suggested a turbo air intake extension of some sort, any information on this id receive with interest.thanks

nothing is impossible for a man who doesn't have to do it alone.

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Old 01-18-2015, 07:17 PM   #8
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cant help much with the 7.3 as I run 5.9L cummins, however I did have a batch of bad fuel in one of my trucks once and was recommended this stuff- it worked great to kill the algae and clean out my injecors- better than the stuff you get at the gas station

https://www.essentialube.com/shop/in...od&productId=8

good luck with your build- I've got a similar shuttle I'm working on converting now!
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Old 02-04-2015, 02:01 PM   #9
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Update

Quote:
Originally Posted by roach711 View Post
Your coolant may be leaking from either of the rubber hoses going back to the rear heater. My hoses (both heater and AC) ran along the driver's side frame rail. If you pop off the engine cover you can clamp off the coolant hoses where they come off the engine to keep from draining the coolant while you repair or remove the hoses.
Looks like you have the same hose clamped twice. Reason for that? Are all of the hoses in that bunch coolant ? 2 run to the ac unit one thick, one thin, 2 run to the heater, I'm assuming one is feed and one return for the heater. These are all non crucial auxiliary hoses from what I'm understanding, so I can just clamp and remove/work them out?


Quote:
Originally Posted by roach711 View Post
bHere's one of the heater hoses after removing the "T"
got any more pictures to share?

Old fuel filter was as dirty as a dirtymother. Haven't got into the fuel tank yet, just added some new diesel with additive to the tank. Does cleaning the fuel screens from the fuel pump require one to drop the tank?

While tracing the coolant hoses, I noticed some dampness on the underside of what I believe is my automatic transmission, it is slightly red, like tranny fluid, pictures to come... While driving it after purchase, I noticed some rough shifting in the transmission from 1st to 2nd. Let's stay optimistic here.
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Old 02-05-2015, 07:02 PM   #10
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The hose that is clamped off in the picture was double clamped so I could remove a "T" in the hose that fed the deleted back heater. The two hoses going into the steel tubes are for the rear AC.

You need to remove the big plastic air filter assembly in order to get at the fuel bowl and the fuel filter inside it. Use a half inch ratchet or an oil filter wrench to remove the fuel bowl top. It's hard to get at.

If there's no access hatch in the bus floor the only way to get at the fuel pickup is to drop the tank. If you measure carefully you should be able to cut an access hole in the floor. I'd much rather do that than drop the tank. Start with a small hole to get in the right area then cut a full size hole big enough to lift the pickup straight up and out. You'll need special tools to unhook the quick releases on the hoses. Most any auto parts store has them.

Red fluid around the transmission pan usually means a leaky pan gasket. Not hard to replace - just drain the fluid in the pan (probably 6 to 8 quarts) then drop the pan. Might as well replace the trans filter while you've got it open. That's easy too. Mine had a magnet inside the pan to pick up any steel particles in the fluid. A clean magnet is good news. Your shifting roughness may just be low fluid. Check your level with the engine idling after running the shift lever briefly through each of the positions.
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