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Old 08-15-2020, 05:00 PM   #161
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Location: pa
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Year: 98
Coachwork: 1. Corbeil & 2. Thomas
Chassis: 1 ford e350 2 mercedes
Engine: 7.3 powerstroke & MBE906
The front axle is a solid Dana 60 that was used on our Quigley 4x4 ambulance..Bulan.. We reinforced some of the somewhat corroded sections. Here it is laying almost ready for a first fit.
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Old 08-15-2020, 09:45 PM   #162
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Join Date: Dec 2015
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Year: 98
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Chassis: 1 ford e350 2 mercedes
Engine: 7.3 powerstroke & MBE906
Elf bus e350 4x4 conversion

Here we have removed all of the twin I beam front axle. Took the opportunity to take some rust of the spring towers. Used galvanizing paint. Doubt it will work in salty PA.
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Old 08-16-2020, 08:14 AM   #163
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Year: 98
Coachwork: 1. Corbeil & 2. Thomas
Chassis: 1 ford e350 2 mercedes
Engine: 7.3 powerstroke & MBE906
Some of the components in place for a test fit. It all seem to work well.
There are many 4x4 conversion strategies out there. Most of them need to lift the van 5" to accommodate the differential with the engine mount cross member. Quigley is the only that modifies the cross member so that the van needs only a 3" lift. For me that is important because the center of gravity stays lower and makes it less tippy.
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Old 08-16-2020, 06:11 PM   #164
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Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: pa
Posts: 2,136
Year: 98
Coachwork: 1. Corbeil & 2. Thomas
Chassis: 1 ford e350 2 mercedes
Engine: 7.3 powerstroke & MBE906
So cutting into a cross member that holds the weightbof the power stroke is a little scary. Good enough Quigley engineered this out so just paste and copy. This was the only thing that needed to be welded on the van. Battery cables of both batteries and solar system were disconnected and lights were turned on to dissipate induction voltages. While we were at it we welded and reinforced the bumper mounts to accept the winch.
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Old 08-17-2020, 07:37 AM   #165
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Posts: 2,136
Year: 98
Coachwork: 1. Corbeil & 2. Thomas
Chassis: 1 ford e350 2 mercedes
Engine: 7.3 powerstroke & MBE906
Second time we mounted the frame brackets to the torque arms and axle first and then slid the whole thing under the bus.
The passenger brake caliper was sticking . good enough the parts store had one in stock.. The original brake hoses from the bus were not a perfect match for the older style calipers. A little grinding did the trick. I will mount new lines later. The 18000lbs winch fitted good. It is back on the wheels...tires are 255/85/r16.

Next thing is the rest of the bumper..transfer case..and lifting the rear side of the bus.
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Old 08-17-2020, 07:57 AM   #166
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Join Date: Dec 2015
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Year: 98
Coachwork: 1. Corbeil & 2. Thomas
Chassis: 1 ford e350 2 mercedes
Engine: 7.3 powerstroke & MBE906
Took some time to get this pic out of my phone. The guy in the prison suit is yours truly. This axle swap part of this project took 12 hours my time and 6 hours of my friends time.
This project has been in planning since I bought Elfie, about 4-5 years ago.


Johan
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Old 08-19-2020, 02:36 PM   #167
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Year: 98
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Chassis: 1 ford e350 2 mercedes
Engine: 7.3 powerstroke & MBE906
E350 4x4 conversion Elfbus

Put the bumper back on. Starting to look OK.. Next step is the rear axle. The winch is 18000 lbs .. A bit of overkill..I integrated it inside the bumper so that less weight would hang in front and also that the bus would stay as short as possible. Winch frame is made of 1/4" stainless. It is nice because it still looks new like when I made that 6 years ago.

Johan
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Old 08-21-2020, 01:45 PM   #168
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Location: Mt Vernon, WA
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Year: 1996
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Chassis: G30 Bluebird Microbird, E350 Shuttle Bus
Engine: 1995 Chevrolet 350, 1992 Ford 460
Wow, good progress! Impressive!
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Old 08-21-2020, 07:42 PM   #169
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Chassis: International 3800
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Rated Cap: 7 Row Handicap
sweet!!! 4x4 quigley retro.. lovin it!! those quigleys were the nest in my opinion.. they ran a few of those as EMTs here in columbus back in the day.. (since horton is right in town they tend to sell municipalities new units fairly regularly so i never see the older van chassis EMTs any more)
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Old 08-27-2020, 07:24 AM   #170
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Chassis: 1 ford e350 2 mercedes
Engine: 7.3 powerstroke & MBE906
Thanks Doktari and Chris. I am hunting for a tow bar to tow this bus behind our big bus.. At least on the flat ground. See how the rest of this install will be going.
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Old 09-07-2020, 08:08 PM   #171
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Year: 98
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Chassis: 1 ford e350 2 mercedes
Engine: 7.3 powerstroke & MBE906
No pictures but pogress.. installed a wireless winch control and an anderson connector as main disconnect for the winch. Replaced the track bar. the nwe one has poly urethane bushings.. Did not try it yet, will see if it is more stable on the road.

The rear axle install gets closer. The ratio is 4.09 with Limited slip differential.
Would like to get an ARB locker in the rear and a LS in the front.


oh well,, one can dream on.
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Old 09-20-2020, 04:11 PM   #172
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Year: 98
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Engine: 7.3 powerstroke & MBE906
Instead of using blocks between the rear axle and leaf springs I decided to use airbags. I made some measurements how much the axle could go when completely compressed or extended. I also did not like that with raiser blocks I would have more chance on folding a spring.
Anyhow these are some pics about articulation WITHOUT additional springs or modification.
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Old 09-20-2020, 08:43 PM   #173
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Year: 1996
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Chassis: G30 Bluebird Microbird, E350 Shuttle Bus
Engine: 1995 Chevrolet 350, 1992 Ford 460
What a great idea to use a forklift. Iím a engine guy, I donít know suspension modification. I thought air bags are only for load support and leveling? Like to prevent sagging when towing.
I tried some Timbren bump stops in my Express van. I liked them but they are expensive for what looks like a block of rubber.
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Old 09-21-2020, 06:08 PM   #174
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Year: 98
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Chassis: 1 ford e350 2 mercedes
Engine: 7.3 powerstroke & MBE906
Doktari, I am neither motor or suspension guy, just wrenching around.. the rear of the bus has to raise 4" . The airbags I choose have a 8" range. If I push the leaf springs 4" down then the spring leaves separate on the outside making the spring softer and more comfortable. Will see how it work out.



Put the whole thing on the scale



4120 front axle
9500 total weight


Still need another solar panel so it is going to be close.


Johan
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Old 09-23-2020, 08:31 AM   #175
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Engine: 7.3 powerstroke & MBE906
Started on installing the airbags. I choose the D2600 because can extend up to 12" with a minimum of 2.8". The other reason was that I wanted more like load capacity because the airbags are supposed to lift the rear of the bus 3 to 4 " and uncompress the leaf springs. My thought is that the ride with uncompressed leaf springs will be softer.
Paid $105 on amazon for the pair..When they arrived I tried to compress to 2.8 but found that 4" was about the max. With 60 psi of air pressure applied it did only extend to 10".. So those specification are inflated..pun intended..
The brackets were sourced from the scrapyard and I had to modify the air access hole to accommodate the larger bags.
I made new brackets that hold on to the bottom of the leaf springs. Used stainless for that and also bolts and hardware is stainless with SS nylon locking nuts. Used nickel antiseize past on the stainless bolts and nuts.
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Old 09-23-2020, 08:44 AM   #176
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Rated Cap: 7 Row Handicap
I really love the idea of using bags.. esp if you set them up to have the ability to fill individually.. seems like a game changer if you get yourself into a pickle someplace and need to raise that one corner of the rig temporarily..
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Old 09-24-2020, 10:15 AM   #177
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Hi Chris. Yes that is the plan. I ran two 3/8 lines to the front and will have a pneumatic valve block to do exactly that with two air pressure gauges mounted on the a pillar.

Yesterday I found that they had deflated overnight. Our youngest girl ( and me climbed under the van with soap and found a leaking threaded joint. Retaped it and now all is good. Took the van out on a 30 mile test ride and indeed it feels very smooth. Small irregularities only come thru the front axle. It feels quieter also.
Running now 70 psi. Probably will go up to 90psi and see how much further the van goes up.
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Old 11-18-2020, 11:43 AM   #178
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Year: 98
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Chassis: 1 ford e350 2 mercedes
Engine: 7.3 powerstroke & MBE906
This is a copy of a post on my other thread "Dory transit a new start"



Had an unfortunate slow leak in my passenger front tire of the Elfbus. Made it home with a air fill every 5 miles.
Here is our little one wrestling with a 255/85/R16.

Then some more wrestling with the impact. By lug eight she got the hang of it.

Johan
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Old 11-18-2020, 12:12 PM   #179
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Chassis: 1 ford e350 2 mercedes
Engine: 7.3 powerstroke & MBE906
accident, flip on side, black ice

In an attempt to tires class F I decided to go to 19.5" rims.


yesterday,During our pick up trip,my Dog Rosie and me ,we got caught on black ice going up a slight hill.

This was on route 36 10 miles north of I80. The road was dugout in a side of hill. so bank on the opposite side( driver side) and ditch on the passenger side.

There was a fresh 1/2" of snow. I had slowed down to 35-40 mph


The rear slid towards the ditch but somehow the car slowly moved over the centerline towards the bank.


We hit the bank at 30 degree angle, probably driving the front up and flipping the bus on its side. The rear cam around so that the bus was laying on the passenger side in the other lane.


The side was dislodged and ripped partially of. Rosie had fallen in that direction and her right back leg was stuck thru the broken galss of the door under the bus.


I fell more or less on top of her.


I was able to calm Rosie down and find pieces of 2x4 and a piece of 4x4 that I tried to pound next to her leg between the pavement and the bus.


By that time help had arrived and they were trying to get the smashed front windshield out to gain access


I started smelling diesel and was very afraid that the bus would catch on fire and that I would have to abandon my dog.


It took about 15 minutes of pounding the 2x4 and and digging between the pavement with broken glass and the bus door ( A frame pillar) before I was able to get her leg out. My hands were bleeding from the glass.


Rosie was not able to stand and her leg appeared broken.


Rescue people, fire brigade, coppers ambulances, quit the scene.
All, except the cop, very helpfull, so I ended up with a moving traffic violation citation that he was going to mail to me.
I did not feel that I had done anything wrong but I guess it would have been better if my speed would have been 15 mph.



Two wreckers lifted Elfie back on her wheels.
had to sign waver paperwork that I declined a medical attention.



One of the fire fighter volunteers brought Rosie and me to a local vet where X-rays showed no breaks but the leg had pulled out of the hip socket. She will need surgery to be able to walk again.
She got sedated and the vet put the ball back in the socket and made a sling so that the leg stays there.


The body of the bus bend 3" over to the driver side. The steering bar bend so it can only steer to the left now.


Engine lost motor oil but runs after much longer start but sounds OK.


I am sure this is by all means a total loss but if the frame is straight then I will have to give it a try although she will ever become a pretty Elf again, if even possible.


Johan
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Old 11-18-2020, 04:46 PM   #180
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Year: 2001
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Chassis: Phantom
Engine: ISM 10.8L, B400R
Glad to see you are ok!
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