This was the scene yesterday morning. Snowmageddon 2023!
It didnt last.
Anyways, i hit the road and made if halfway to my destination, when i blew the cooler line for the transmission.
It was rough, we lost about 8 qts of fluid, and fast. We were sitting at a traffic light, and when the light turned green, the truck wouldnt go! Thankfully there was a Turkey Hill across the street, so i wandered over, grabbed a couple quarts of oil and dumped em down the dipstick so i could get the truck off the road. Found the leak, got lucky and was able to shorten the hose and put it back together. With that fixed we resumed our trip, which was to go pick up this:
Home Depot truck!
Its a 2008 F350. 2wd 5.4l with 305,000 miles on the clock! Picked it up for cheap because realistically aside from the bed, the truck isnt really worth much.
All i really care about is the bed, and its in pretty good shape overall. Picked the truck up for less than the cost of an aluminum flatbed, so im calling it a win!
This bed will look really nice on the back of the '96 F250...
oil leak: fixed
Fixing the dreaded dipstick o-ring leak on the 7.3 powerstroke
As you can see, its a slimy mess up there.
I got lucky, mine didnt just leak, the o-ring straight up left town, and it started hemorrhaging oil. It was a pretty big leak, no mistaking that one! So since i prefer to upgrade rather than simply replace, i opted for Strictly Diesel's Dipstick Adapter Repair Kit.
This thing is a pretty nicely machined:
So lets get this done.
Remove this bolt, and then yank the dipstick out of the existing adapter in the pan
Starter has to come out, theres no way youre doing it installed. Here you can see the dipstick up and out of harms way
Next up is to spin the nut off. This part is important! Grab the stem with something. I used needle nose vice grips, but anything will suffice. A pair of channel locks will remove the nut. Most likely, its loose anyway.
With the nut off, let the adapter slide into the pan a bit, and then reach in with some form of pick, hook the o-ring and dig it out thru the hole. Not as bad to do as it sounds
Here's what time has done to mine: swollen to well above its original size. You can see the deformation where it has actually worked its way out of the adapter. No wonder the leak was so bad!
This is typical, and its why tightening the nut down more rarely fixes the leak.
So, the new adapter uses 2 orings to seal against the outside of the pan, so no more issues with oil swelling the orings. Of course youll need to clean the outside of the pan, but odds are its clean metal (aside from some oil grime) since it was leaking anyway. Also of note is the bracket that slips into the hole in the pan- the one bolt has a small weld on the end so it cant be threaded out. So youll slip this thru the hole in the pan, and then rotate that screw which will in turn rotate the sandwich plate until it lines up with the hole in the adapter
See those two little notches? one is to set the clocking for an OBS 7.3, the other for a SD 7.3. In my case its a 90, so i want the dipstick to point up; the SD motors have it tilted slightly forward.
I wish i could say theres more to it, but really there isnt. Once youve removed the oring you simply drop the old adapter into the pan. Its big enough itll settle to the bottom and stay there forever. Unless you roll it over, anyway! At some point in time (next year?) im planning on having the cab off, so ill yank the pan then and extract it. Anyways, slip the new adapter into the hole in the pan, rotate, and install screws! Its honestly pretty easy to do.
The kit comes with a new OEM gasket for the dipstick tube. Technically it is not an o-ring, its this fancy shape thats supposed to seal better
Oil it up a bit, slip it on, and the reinstall the tube! Install the starter and youre done!
It is a tight fit; maybe 1/4" clearance to starter at most. But, it clears and it works! No more leaks!
I did the whole job in about 90 minutes, truck on the ground still on its tires, while stopping to take pics. I suspect it could be done in an hour, so easily something that can be tackled after work one day.
When it rains it pours
I think i found the source of the fuel leak on the diesel:
The base snapped off the fuel pump when i removed it. Im thinking it was cracked already and leaking fuel into the valley. Obviously i was able to extract the broken portion fairly easily. I didnt get a chance to do much of a test drive though, as the oil dipstick oring in the pan let go, and the motor just hemorrhages oil when its running. So i have a repair kit in the mail, should be here in about a week.
Got scared there for a second
I started throwing codes in the diesel recently, only i didnt know what they were!
As im sure anyone with an OBS 7.3L knows, the OBD-II implementation in these trucks is pretty spotty, which made this one a little frustrating to solve. I started getting a CEL that would appear & disappear and not throw a code (confirmed or pending), but the idle would change when it set. I figured ICP, so pulled the connector and sure enough there was oil in there, so i assumed that was the problem, bought a new OEM one, and slapped it in. It wasnt the problem.
I started digging a little deeper and found in Continuous Memory code P1211, "ICP Higher/Lower Than Desired (engine running)". So now im figuring either my IPR or HPOP is failing. Cant get live data from the PCM with my scanner, so i figured id just yank the IPR out and inspect it.
In case you dont know, removing this required removal of the fuel bowl. Its a fairly daunting task if you havent done it before. The last time this one was out was ~10 years ago, so i was a little rusty on how to do it, but honestly its not too bad.
I immediately noticed something funky going on. It like the silicone boot for the plug turned to goo inside the socket:
The plug for the IPR is on a short harness connected to the fuel bowl. With this removed from the truck, it was easy to inspect. And it looks like weve found a problem!
Well, surely thats our problem!
So i did some research and then called the local Ford dealer. Turns out they had the pigtail in stock, along with all the short fuel hoses you need to reinstall the fuel bowl! So i made a run up there and picked everything up. Fast forward a day, and we're ready for repair!
So here's the replacement pigtail from Ford, p/n 6E7Z-12A690-DA.
It comes in a bag with some crimps and shrink sleeving, but i opted to solder it, and use my own shrink sleeve, as i have adhesive lined
I disassembled and cleaned the IPR while it was out (i should have taken pics, but i was a bit oily at that point), and then reinstalled it. Fuel bowl went back in with all 4 hoses replaced plus the short one for the drain, and i cleaned all the sediment out of the bowl. The HPOP resevoir had been drained so i put about a half quart of new oil in there so it wouldnt try to start dry, and then fired it up!
It did initially pop a CEL, but i attribute that to there being air in the fuel & oil systems. I let it idle for a while, then turned it off/on, and problem solved! Runs great now, and no CEL.
7.3 repair: complete!
Upgrading to the Superduty UVCH + valve cover gaskets:
Removed the engine harness:
..and rewiring it for the SD valve cover gaskets:
...and all done!
With that done, all that was left was to install the harness, batteries, fender liner, and throw some fluids in it! So i got all that done today, purged the fuel lines, and got her running!
...Then i went thru the yard, and filled the bed of the truck with downed branches from the winter
So i figure ive got a good weeks worth of work of cleanup to do, but i expect to be working on the big bronco again before the end of the month!
more 7.3 progress
Made some progress this morning, before the weather turned sour.
Exhaust manifold in, along with up-pipe, which you totally cant see, but its in there!
check these rocker arms!
Valve train installed. Down-pipe is reinstalled too.
All new orings and washers on the injectors:
I got all the injectors reinstalled, but by then it was raining pretty heavily. Hopefully tomorrow its a bit dryer out!
...and all the torks!
Supposed to be nice and warm tomorrow too, so hopefully that rain holds out and i can get a bit more done!
Went OEM on the head gasket, and the head bolts. Considered studs but theyre major $$$, i dont really need them, and they cut all my OT at work, so.....
Figured the head was off, might as well do valve stem seals:
I had one cracked injector cup, so i replaced all 8 just in case
The 7.3 has a two-stage fuel pump in the valley, and uses a single hard line to supply fuel to the back of both heads:
I wanted to replace mine since it has a kink on the passenger side, and the rubber collars behind the nuts are rotted after 24 years. Well, you cant do it with the turbo installed!. It also uses the biggest banjo bolt youve ever seen!
i had to order a set of metric 1/4" drive swivel sockets to get the turbo out, as nothing else will fit in there to remove it. It is god damned tight in there:
That wasnt the worst either. No way to do it w/o them swivel sockets.
Turbo out, new fuel line + pedestal o-rings installed:
...and finally, turbo reinstalled!
Got all that finished up this morning. Weather permitting, monday morning i should be good to start reinstalling the head!
I broke a glow plug a couple weeks ago when i was trying to replace them. Couldnt get the last piece of it out of the head, so.......
That was yesterday. Hopefully next week ill be able to put the head back on. OEM head gaskets & bolts, OEM exh manifold gasket & bolts. Had a cracked injector cup so theyre all getting changed (bought the kit from Rosewood Diesel to do it). Doing valve stems seals, because she's at 201k & the head is off so why not. Also have the parts to convert the truck over to the Superduty valve cover gaskets + UVCHs (Under Valve Cover Harness for you non-diesel guys).
dump bed done!
So the dump bed works pretty awesome!
You cant really tell, but theres a yard of stone in the bed.
I didnt shoot any vid of it dumping, didnt think of it at time, was more concered with watching it, since a yard of stone is ~2600lbs. ive used it a couple times now, it is super awesome.
The green tailgate presented a problem though. It was a necessity as my original tailgate got smashed, but its bowed pretty badly, and i was losing stone on the way home. So, i dug out a shell ive had kicking around, and decided to see what i could do with it.
This one was also green, so i sanded it and then rattled it with some red primer, then sanded again
Starting to lay color. Again, all rattle can as i dont own a spray gun, and wasnt going to buy one, just to spray a tailgate
Couple coats of clear later, starting to look better
Some more wet sanding and some wax, and this i what i ended up with:
Not too bad for rattle can, if i do say so myself!!
Hardware from my gate going in:
...and the finished product!
Considering its all rattle can, i think the end result ended up pretty good, even tho its slightly off-color. its still way better than green, and this gate is actually straight!
So from here i moved on to two other projects.
#1, front brakes!
Power Stop carbon-ceramic pads, and their rotors as well. Havent driven it yet, we'll see tomorrow if they work any better than the crap Autozone brakes that were on there before.
#2, bumper mods.
I really couldnt bring myself to drill 4 holes in my shiny new tailgate, so i had to find a different place to put the license plate. So here we go! Take this:
and fit it here:
Being inset, it clears the hitch with plenty of room!
then i drilled some holes
...and reinstalled the OEM plate lamps, after i painted them to match the bumper:
Hopefully this is the last of the work to this thing for the year, as my other projects are piling up!