410Custom's builds a 2007 Ranger V8 - custom truck build - Project "Ranger Premier" | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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410Custom's builds a 2007 Ranger V8 - custom truck build - Project "Ranger Premier"


Truck Season!!
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Elite Explorer
August 3, 2000
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City, State
Year, Model & Trim Level
B2 "Slightly" Modified
This build has been in the works for some time.
After I relocated shop from Colorado to North Idaho, it seems the word has gotten out.

A good friend on the forums and now in real life friend / fellow Ranger owner and enthusiast is interested in having a "cool truck"
I just happen to know a place that loves to share visions and build cool modified RBV's, so I offered up my services and we struck a deal.

This build is taking place on a newish and therefore smaller Ford Ranger Forum, but since I am a moderator here at EF.com and I consider Explorer4x4.com my home away from home, it seems only proper to have this thread on both web sites. I will do my best to keep both threads updated the same.

Seems this super clean and freshly painted 2007 Ford Ranger 4x4 is in need of some tasteful upgrades, tired of being stock? I know we are!!

Some of the project goals for this custom build are:

GT40p 302 V8 with performance camshaft
Torque Monster Headers
4r70w auto trans
4406E 4x4 transfer case
Full custom exhaust, drivetrain wiring, instrument cluster and interior wiring
4.88 gears, some sort of traction device in the rear axle
Disc brake explorer 31 spline 8.8
Superlift 5.5" with torsion bar delete / threaded body coilovers
(thanks @boominXplorer for the smokin good deal on a lightly used Superlift)
Deavers/ shackle hanger flip? we will see what budget allows. Spring over explorer axle for sure
35" tires
2014 Ford Edge heated leather seats
Gen II explorer center console
EATC hvac controls
Keyless entry
On board camera system, front, rear and sides
Ranger blinker mod
Emissions LEGAL in Washington State
LOTS and LOTS of Custom touches front to back

In order to pull off a build like this on a later model Ranger there are some serious obstacles to overcome and modifications needed. The PATS security system, the ABS braking system, emissions compliance, truck interface to a 98 PCM, and more can be a challenge when converting to the pushrod 302. I am no stranger to drivetrain swaps, custom wiring of electrical systems, and building full custom trucks, I welcome this project with open arms, just as if she was one of my own. (I can hear all the small voices now "410Fortune you better know what the hell you are doing!!") To the haters I respond the same as I always have ......."Calm yourself down...relax....I got this!"

This 2007 truck is a show stopper, she was just re painted last year and with only 139K on the clock, she is in excellent condition.
However she looks, talks, and performs like a stock Ranger and STOCK SUCKS!!

It is time to change all of that, so with some careful planning, a ton of saved up money and a reserved space front and center in my private custom Ford off road shop...follow along as I build up Eddie Money's (from Ranger-Forums.com) Project "Ranger Premier"

The truck was driven from the Seattle area to my home town here in North Idaho. We had a nice visit with the owner and talked about the possibilities and build goals. I showed off some of our custom creations here at the shop. The 2007 was left with me, I washed it, cleared my schedule and pulled her into the first bay where she will take center stage for the next few months as I build her up.

We have been planning this build for about a year now and the day has come, she is finally in the shop.....





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Later that same day:




In good company:


Parts are starting to show up:

Now I am stripping the engine bay and interior, then will get the new drivetrain front and center, put the engine on a stand and begin the v8 conversion.
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ive got a 07 level II that i have wanted to do a v8 swap. i have noticed over the years mileage and age the power from the v6 is going away. what is stopping me from doing the swap is the electrical. i know that is the part that stops most including me because its a nightmare. may have to keep a eye on this. hopefully you will include how that part is done.
correct me if i am wrong, for a 4406 case, on a ranger do you not have to notch the frame for it to fit? this would be another thing i would do if i ever did the swap and toss the awd case and also add manual hubs up front.

what is stopping me from doing the swap is the electrical. i know that is the part that stops most including me because its a nightmare. may have to keep a eye on this. hopefully you will include how that part is done.
correct me if i am wrong, for a 4406 case, on a ranger do you not have to notch the frame for it to fit?

There are some interesting obstacles to overcome when working with the 2007 ranger platform, but I like to think if it came from the factory with a sohc and a 5r auto trans then I can make it come with a 96-01 302 V8 and 4r70w.
All the wiring to do this takes place at the old C-115 (ranger dudes call it C-112 I believe) 42 pin wiring connector under the hood. On a 07 this has been replaced with some funky new style connectors.
The 07 Ranger already has a stand alone 4x4 control module (the motorolla box) which will shift the 4406 electric t case just like if it was still the 1354e
I have fit 4406 t cases into Gen II explorers and rangers before, this will be my first IFS ranger with the e shift case. I have done several rangers and explorers using the manual shift 4406.

I have been a part of many of these conversion
I can even wire the motorolla box into a pinto if I needed too... I can add pats to a Gen I ranger if needed, we have many tricks up our sleeves.......
The 4406 case should physically fit the 98-11 Ranger frame just fine, the only area of concern is the shift motor to fuel tank clearance.....The plastic fuel tank in this ranger is set way back away from the v6 t case, if I have to modify the front bracket and make room for the t case shift motor I will chop/cut/weld as needed.
I picked up a 4406 e from a 97 F150 along with the front D shaft.

Some of the NEW challenges are (Keep in mind I have done 83-2003 Ranger 5.0 conversions in the past, v6 conversions, broncos, explorers sport tracs, I converted my 88 BII to full OBD2 V8 back in 2005, recently I even stripped down a 97 explorer dirvetrain and power distribution wiring harness and stuffed it all into the drivers kick panel of a 1940 Ford F1, I love a good challenge. ):

1. Return less fuel line plumbing, the 07 ranger fuel line comes up the spine of the transmission. I can build fuel line(s) as needed. The 97.5 PCM does not care if your fuel rail is return or returnless. I will run returnless on this gt40p. 07 Ranger should have a fuel pump driver module, it will need to be bypassed for my use.

2. Explorer PCM and drivetrain harness do not contain a required wire for the 4x4 shift controller, there is a NSS wire that must be added to the DTRS and run to the trucks 4x4 control module

3. Instrument cluster interface, The only real systems I need to work for me here are the speedometer, tach, water and oil pressure, battery light...the rest of it stays with the truck.
I can use the sohc coolant and oil pressure switches, the tach signal I can modify if needed or move a wire, use guts from 98 cluster, whatever is needed to get the factory 07 tach working I am sure I can sort out. Others have gone before me there are multiple 04+ sport tracs and Rangers that have been wired to accept the 5.0 drivetrain, information is power.

4. VSS issues, the 07 5r55e has a second OSS speed sensor, the 98 Explorer 5.0 harness does not, this may confuse the 98 pcm and or the 07 ranger instrument cluster, dakota digital makes a nice interface for $85 that can fix some of these VSS/ISS/OSS signal issues easily.
My 97.5 pcm is expecting to see a VSS mounted in the tailhousing of the T case, the 97 4406e came with one. I can use a 97.5 or 98 PCM for this build, I have both here. I am leaning towards the 97.5 for the simplicity, skip the pats installation and maybe able to keep his 07 keys in the steering column.

5. PCM pocket, the space in the 07 firewall for the PCM is a completely different shape /size etc. I may have to modify it or re locate the 97.5 pcm

6. The EATC or Electronic Automatic Temperature Controller into a Ranger has been covered 100 times. I have a donor explorer or two to grab parts from
7. The keyless entry into the drivers door has also been done and covered, nothing we cannot handle here
8. The 2014 Edge seats are power and heated, need a nice big power feed, 60 amp in the factory power dist box with dedicated relay, should do it. I have to hack their bases apart to fit the ranger floor pan. I will need to wire up some switches to control the heaters....

What else do we need to overcome?
Some obstacles yes, but I am not sure I see the problem?
I am not saying this to be ****y either, I mean it, any others I am missing?
I am here to learn too!

07 Ranger Wiring book is on it's way........
I may need to get 14 edge book too for these seats (I recently put 08 Navigator heated and cooled seats in my 97 F350 crew )

Day 2:
Ranger is done being stripped, I would do the suspension too but i need her rolling for a little while longer. It is time to bring the donor drivetrain into the shop and strip it down. The engine is being stripped to the long block and built back up with all new gaskets and many new parts, cam, valve springs, etc..... donor is a 99 Explorer limited with 104K on it (T boned a tree with the drivers door??). Wiring harness and PCM will be from a 97.5 explorer (140K has AWD issues). EATC and other parts will come from the 99 eddie outside ( 99 eddie drivetrain is already going into a 03 sport trac in Bay 2, my step son's project we are working side by side.)

07 strip down to be built back up:

Now I can change the blend door actuator to electronic group LOL


Very rare Mountaineer Premier badge: thinking about it?!?!



Next step power wash, de-grease,. detail the engine bay! good time to back flush the heater core

1997 Ford F150 4.6L BW 4406e will get new seals and use 07 shift motor:

Wiring plugs that interface the truck to the drivetrain in 2007. All wires to connect truck to engine and transmission pass through here

Engine side


truck side

03 Sport trac one bay over:
Uses very similar wiring harness / power dist box, but still has old style 42 pin C115 (c112) plug. I know the new 07 plugs will contain all of the same wires, because I know where they all go on the sohc and 5r trans

Example, this is the 03 trac power dist box and PCM wiring plug C115 (where the magic happens) Looks ALOT like the 07 harness, just with diff connectors...
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Oh yeah, buddy!

if i were to do mine, i would want everything to work like it came from the factory. meaning i would want the stock cluster to work like it was still a v6 truck. the problems i would face are the tpms, air bag and drl's would still have to function like they did from factory. if they didnt, and the truck ever got called in for a inspection they would not consider it road worthy and pull the insurance until it was all fixed and functioning. making everything fit for me would be easy, making all the electronics talk to one and other, thats the brick wall.
my other problem would be if i ever did stuff a v8 into it i would also end up wanting to supercharge it and would have to build another m112 or m122 mount for it

My goal is always to make it work like stock UNLESS the build calls for something different, like if my customer wanted to delete the ABS brakes I can plumb them out of the system and get rid of the ABS warning chime and light. This truck the side airbags in the seats just went away since the seats are gone....this will be a weekend warrior/ off road truck, many of us disable our airbags so a slight impact on the trail does not set them off.
I can use seat cheaters to make theCPU think the side bags are still there, I can convert to a non side airbag cpu, I can disable the system completely or the best option would be to see if the 14 edge side bags are compatible with this 07 system. All these options are on the table.

Aside from the seat swap on this truck I am not messing with any factory systems.
Lighting (DRL) will be all 07
Tire pressure monitors? This truck does not have but I cannot imagine that by changing the PCM from SOHC and 5r55e to a 302 and 4r70w would disable the TPMS?

I am not sure why removing the V6 and auto trans would have you messing with the airbag computer, lighting system and other body control cpu/ systems?

I still think you can integrate the OBD2 302 drivetrain into a 07 without disabling these?

Why do you say "its like hitting a brick wall?" You have peaked my curiosity. I know you have already researched these conversions, which is why I ask. Two heads are always better than one!!

Emissions and safety check requirements will always kill some builds, if you have to be legal, then we are limited in what we can do. Lucky for us here in the USA in some places we still have the freedoms to dabble in drive train conversions and meet the emissions requirements and pass safety checks. This is not always possible.

The 5.0 conversion may not be for everyone, especially if you have a late model and you need all of those systems in place. Is it possible to keep all airbags, TPMS, and DRL with a 302? maybe.......only one way to find out!!

Look back in 1995 or whenever it was that I got my brothers old Bronco II and started to drive it, I fell in love with its ability on and off road.
I started asking "what kind of modifications can be done to it, more power? suspension? and the answer was always "get a jeep"
well the internet was brand new and I found a group of guys who were asking similar questions at a little web forum called Fordrangers.com and Kunz Korner....2.9L performance.
Finally others who agree maybe it can be done!!
I'm still driving that little bronco, 7 transmissions later and a few wiring/drivetrain swaps I wouldn't trade her for the world (well maybe for a 347/supercharged sport trac, we'll get into that later) LOL
If I believed the wiring was a "brick wall" I would not still have that truck or have been able to perform all these conversions over the years.........lets see how this turns out!!
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So I stripped down the 07 sohc engine yesterday, grabbing anything I might need to add to the 5.0 conversion. I have the complete engine wiring harness, some sensors and some of the EVAC system tubes.
If I am to compare a 2007 SOHC engine and 5r55e wiring harness to a lets say 1998 SOHC engine and 5r55e wiring harness lets note the differences:
1. One water temp sensor instead of two. I have been reading the 07 instrument cluster uses a bus communications network to get signals for the gauges. I am not sure this is true for the coolant and oil sensors, they look very similar to the earlier models.....
I should be able to plumb these sensors into my 5.0 as needed if needed.

2. PCV valve has a sensor inside it,
3. injector connections are different,
4. 7 wire MAS vs 5 wire
5. extra OSS sensor in the transmission tail housing

Otherwise I do not see any other other major differences, but I will keep looking.

What I am getting at is a 98 5.0L drivetrain is not much different then the V6 and all of these trucks from 95-04 use a similar c115 42 pin connector.
The V8 has two additional injectors, 8 coil pack instead of 6, and it uses a cam synchro mounted on the cam instead of the valve cover mounted sensor. Not far off from the wiring that is already there....

Wiring this drivetrain conversion should be just like the earlier models (01-03), only differences are in the ABS brake module, fuel pump driver module and of course the PATS system. the airbag/restraint computer and 4x4 controller are stand alone units, as is the power distribution and all body functions. No gem module to deal with is always a PLUS.

I will try to retain the 07 abs system, bypass the FPDM and I already ditches the PATS and corresponding PCM.
I have at least two wiring directions I can take to make this 07 either think it is a 98 or stay 07 and just talk to the 98 drivetrain (I prefer the latter when I can pull it off). Once the 07 wiring book gets here I will know more. However I suspect it will end up very similar to those who have gone before me like SVTranger and others who have converted 02-04 trac and sports to the 302, this 07 is very similar to those trucks.

Thanks for listening to my rambling. I will try to keep this thread short and sweet with lots of pics...but the wiring must be talked about if others plan to follow along with what I am doing and why.




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that truck has or had seat air bags? thats different. my 07 doesnt. i guess it depends on either build date, or where the trucks destination was going to be (im up in canada)
tpms, drl's and others that i had mentioned i had thought they were controlled by the pcm, but after reading more on your post, i forgot all about the gem, which a 07 doesnt have. if i remember they have a central junction box (correct me if i am wrong because i probably am)?
when i say electrical is a brick wall, for me i am terrible when it comes to electrical systems in vehicles. if its not laid out step by step with wire locations, and colors, i will never figure it out.

Copy that! Well maybe this thread will act as your 2007 Ranger FXlvl2 goes blown 347 wiring guide then!!!

I think it had side airbags, I yanked the stock 60/40 seat and both seats are wired for something... I have to pull the "pleather" covers off to see if there are side bags, I just assumed up to this point.

After weeks of research for the best cam for this build
I just sent Comp Cams an email with some final questions before I pull the trigger on this cam (XE264HR):
35-349-8 - Xtreme Energy™ Hydraulic Roller Camshafts, Computer compatible (E.F.I.) with O.E. hydraulic roller cams 1985-95

Wiring to stock 07 seats is for the auto tension seatbelts. I will see if I can utilize this with the 2014 edge seats or not. No side airbags on this truck

Donor 5.0 drivetrain is in the shop
This comes from a beautiful 98 Limited that had 104K miles on it at the time of wreck. It was t boned into a tree w the drivers door after getting sideways on a gravel road. This truck was a customer of mine before the wreck, after the insurance was done with it they were nice enough to buy it back and sell it to me so we could get our hands on these wonderful parts. 98 Limited, gt40p AWD, 104K miles, Ford remanufacrtured 4r70w at some point in its life. I drove this truck when it had 99K on it and I drove it into the shop after the accident. This is an excellent drivetrain donor for our 07 project here...






Time to strip down the engine and fully drain the trans



More donor drive train prep:

We will not be running the 96-97.5 oil cooler setup in our ranger instead we use the 98-01 style lower radiator hose and filter mount to bypass.

One waterpump timing cover bolt did not come loose and rounded. I am lucky only one...these 5.0 are notorious for this. There are some bolts that go into the block and into the water jacket. They get corroded and it is common for them to snap off. No issue, I will get it out. First I tried to use a super socket, 1/2" and then 12mm hammered on...nope too round. So I cut the bolt head off and removed the water pump. Clean the exposed bolt and soak with PB blaster. I tried to grind two flat sections and work the bolt back and forth with a crescent wrench...no go.. snapped right off flush with timing cover. So off comes oil pan and I will work the timing cover over the bolt hopefully w/o damaging the cover......




Trans is removed, I will clean, check and re gasket the long block. When can and vale train parts get here they will go in. New Cloyes timing set, new Motorcraft water pump & thermostat. All new felpro gaskets except for the exhaust manifolds at the TM headers...we use the good ones to ensure no exhaust leaks. Waiting on parts.........

Time to work on seats and suspension!





After I kill the SOHC in the Navajo, I'll do a V8 swap like this in it. Hopefully that's not for a while.

Sohcs are pretty dang tough IMO they are very good engines, especially these later model ones, I have been seeing 350K+ miles from these with 3000-5000 mile religious oil changes. People really do not realize how much the oil change means to these overhead cam engines with the hydraulic tensioners. Now with that said you will not find a SOHC 4.0 under the hood of any of my own personal vehicles, I just do not like the A4LD/4r55e/5r55e that much. :)

Just got a notice from Robert Pasquale....the Torque Monsters have shipped!! Perfect timing...just waiting on the cam and I can drop this sucker in

Old school 3000k mile change fan here myself.:thumbsup:

More tear down on the engine
Very clean inside, a few deposits on the pickup screen could be from the wreck? very nice low mile 302 checks out
Now to clean all the parts and map out my conversion wiring
While waiting for parts I will look at the edge seat base and install to ranger floor pan, seat belt situation
The rear axle will be here this weekend, it is 31 spline explorer 3.73 LS (5.0) with 139K on it (same as truck) we can start to look at the suspension mods

My information says we should be right around 325-340+ crank hp with this setup? p heads, comp cam, proper valve springs, TMH, good airbox/filter, performance exhaust, with stock tune (for now) stock injection (for now) and stock torque converter (for now)

We will see what the overall budget allows for as we go along....

Pair of 302 conversions:






Funny thing about these plugs, I had installed them at 99K miles....before the wreck. What a great opportunity to have a look at the health of our engine. 5K miles later....nice even tan color on each tip..... happy 302

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My information says we should be right around 325-340+ crank hp with this setup? p heads, comp cam, proper valve springs, TMH, good airbox/filter, performance exhaust, with stock tune (for now) stock injection (for now) and stock torque converter (for now)


well that's helpful! what are the numbers then? I spent MUCH TIME Looking at GT40p setups on Mustang forums (not many other places dyno these gt40p heads) the dyno numbers seem to be in this ballpark with gt40p, EFI, cam, explorer intakes, so show me your data. I am curious to know about what this will make

from 275-325 according to this source:
Upgrading Fox Body Cylinder Heads

Seeing 275-300 hp everywhere I look and some claims of 300-340 with p heads and a cam
I guess it depends alot on the car and the dyno.
So how much power will this 302 make??
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my old set up was
98 302 that had a stock block with a 90's stock foxbody cam, cleaned up the cast flash and gasket matched the heads to the headers and intake, then the lower intake to the upper, TMH's injectors, fuel pump, stock throttle body, 90mm lightning maf, 2 1/2 inch exhaust, and a EE m90 as well as a custom tune for that set up. on the dyno it made something like 255-260hp and around 330-335tq at the tires. i have the print out someplace in my thread if you want me to find it.
i dont know what his numbers will be, but i would have to assume they will be lower giving mine was forced induction and his will be n/a