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


410Fortune

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so how much of the factory wiring will be used from both the dono, and the ranger to make it run now. i am also guessing the 5L pcm will no longer be used as well?
The 5.0 PCM will not be used
The truck side of things will stay 2007 until it cannot anymore
This is part of the reason we went with the Holley PCM, I can keep the 07 side of things 07.....or at least it looks that way on paper
The Holley PCM wiring is very straight forward and there are only a few wires to interface with the truck
The challenge will be to convince the 07 truck that it is happy with the holley running things.
I figure I will use the 07 coolant sensor and oil sensor so those gauges should work
Everything else on the truck side SHOULD remain stock like.... stay tuned
I have ALL of the wiring from the 97 /98 explorer if needed and a couple of complete "crush" trucks if we need more parts

Adding power locks, windows, keyless entry and EATC will be an interesting challenge while keeping the 07 smart junction box and 07 power distribution
the only thing we lose so far is the auto tension seatbelts and the 07 restraint computer but that is mostly because we are adding 2014 edge seats :)
 


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CDW6212R

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Ah, that's good too. I've looked for better alternatives to the Moog BJ rubber boots, which get brittle and crack too early. I haven't gotten enough mileage on their newest "baby boots" yet to see how long they will last.
 




410Fortune

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okay some progress, not much to report but I do have some good news.

Now that SEMA and BAJA are over for 2019 we have made some progress!!!

Using the Holley Terminator PCM with our Explorer ignition has taken some back and forth between my good friend Brett and his contact at Holley.
We finally have a "package" that will work with our Explorer based gt40 5.0 drivetrain and the 98+ 4r70w.
We had three choices:

Option 1: Use the mustang distributor that this Holley was designed for = YUCK.
I was adamant about not using a dizzy in this engine, Eddie Money likes a stock looking engine bay! To me using the distributor makes it look like a 1980's mustang 5.0 conversion. NOT on this truck!
So back to Holley we go....

Option 2: The "Explorer Package"
Keeping the waste spark Explorer coil pack and ignition. Yeah!! Now we are talking. Is it possible?
Turns out YES it is! It just requires a couple of wiring harness from Holley. They have a cam/crank pickup harness that goes with the PCM and for it to work with the Explorer crank and cam sensor AND the explorer coil packs a separate coil driver harness was needed. So we are calling this the "Explorer package". You see this is not the only truck we are doing this on, Brett has an Early Bronco that will get similar treatment and I also want this setup for my BII. So Working with Holley we finally have it sorted out. This will be a very popular upgrade for Early Bronco, Ranger and Explorer enthusiasts who go down this road after us.....

Option 3:
Use Chevy LS coil ignition
This is a GREAT option, as we all know the Ford waste spark ignition is not the most efficient setup...I mean it's right there in the name, waste spark. Chevy LS engine use coil near plug ignition and this is an option for us with the Holley PCM. However this would require a different Holley coil driver setup AND we would have to buy LS coils and wires and then figure out where to mount 8 coils and all their wiring. The way I see it there are two places the coils can go, fender skirt or valve cover. You want the wire as short as possible and the coil as near the plug as you can get. For us in an already crowded engine bay with hot TMH headers hugging the block plus the additional cost and using Chevy parts....we decided against this route.

I know Eddie wants to stick with Ford where possible AND he likes the look of a stock(ish) explorer 5.0 swap. SO DO I!!!
So Options1 & 3 are off the table.
The explorer ignition has always been good to us, it provides a very hot spark and the coil packs last forever.
With our power goals in mind for now and the future, the waste spark coil pack ignition is for us!
in the end we went with option #2, pricing is being sorted out right now (Brett is Holley dealer) and we will FINALLY have the PCM in the mail next week.

Basically I have already wired this up on paper, it is going to be a wicked clean setup with minimal wiring and full ability to TUNE for now and the future.
We will need to add two wideband 02 sensors, possibly a map sensor and possibly a knock sensor......I will know more when the PCM actually gets here

Oh and the PCM can be mounted under the engine bay, in the cowl, or inside the truck. This was another big question I had, I am planning to put the pcm in the stock 07 cowl pcm hole if at all possible.
The Holley provided wiring harness will have to be hard wired into the Explorer stuff, this is nice because I can keep stock 5.0 wire colors, connectors and routing.

So I know we said this before but the Holley bits are finally on order and will be here ASAP.
A big THANK YOU to Brett for his help with this!!
I can FINALLY start tackling the wiring for our drivetrain!!!!!!!!!!!!!
 




EddieMoney

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Hell yeah brother!! I'm sensing an invitation to holley ford fest in the future!!! Thank you Brett!!
 
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CDW6212R

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Very good progress, that's a big step.

I have pondered using a later Mustang PCM and making it COP also, but the gains were unknown and locating coils is an issue too. For a boosted engine, the tuning is easier and better with newer computers, but how much better, and at what cost.
 




boominXplorer

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You can run the ls style coils in place of stock explorer coil towers. I've seen someone do it.
 




410Fortune

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Holley Terminator PCM should be here TODAY!!!

Builds have taken a short break we had to re arrange the whole shop. Why? you ask.....

2019 News:
My neighbor and I are now partners on these truck builds.
Ever since I moved here to Idaho I have been working with my neighbor on projects, this dude can do it all. We are same age, he and his wife are one of our only full time neighbors, he is in construction and its wearing him down. So now he is in trucks and will be working full time in the shop with me!!

Why does this matter to our 07 build here? Well because I can do twice as much now with full time help.

Why is the 07 truck not done yet?
Aside from waiting on parts the shop is going through some major holiday changes....I have a 10,000 2 post lift on its way, so we have re arranged the entire shop to accommodate!
So excited.... stay tuned.

The 2007 does have a few updates like:
I finally pulled the explorer 8.8 donor axle for this build, comes from a 96 V6 with 148K. Will get re geared and a True Trac, 4.56 or 4.88 have not completely decided on that until I run some numbers.
I picked up a 2008 F150 transfer case a 4406e and both driveshafts, this t case will go perfectly into the 07 truck.

Next time you see the blue truck she will be 6' up in the air!!!!

Oh and we built a 98 V8 Ranger in our "spare" time LOL life is good
 
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EddieMoney

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Super jealous of the neighbor!! Congrats on the shop improvement!! Being able to stand up and work will be so much better. Agree!!

Things to come will be worth the wait!! Stay tuned!!!
 








CDW6212R

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Good news there about the shop and business, I hope it goes very well.

Did any of the 07 Sport Trac's have a possibility to mount the V8 track bar on the frame, like all 96-01's? If so, I'd use a V8 rear and install those.

What tires will be on that truck, how tall? I was running numbers for my V6 truck(4.10's), for gears, and with a 4R trans and AODE gearing((close ratio)- four AODE parts), I'd want 4.56:1 gears with 30" tires. But mine is work/street only, and no high speed is needed. Ford doesn't make the sizes over 4.56's.
 
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gmanpaint

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Ford made stock gears up to 4:56 ratio.

Ford Racing has thick cut, up to 4:56.

East coast gears always has new Ford take outs for half price. Keep checking their inventory, as it changes frequently.
 




CDW6212R

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Okay, so 4.56 was the biggest that Ford made, I forgot the cutoff. What's a thick cut gear, this is for the front D35 yes?
 








410Fortune

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Back in the day for the reverse rotation dana 35 carrier (front IFS diff) the cutoff was 4.56 or 5.13, then a few years back they started making 4.88 ring and pinions for it.
I usually run precision, Ford or Yukon gears......
This truck will sit on 35" tires and with the V8 and automatic we could get away with 4.56 or 4.88..... but before I drop the rear axle and front diff off for re gearing we want to make sure we pick the right ratio based on the power band and trucks useage (more highway stick with 4.56, more off road stick to 4.88)

I will ask Chase at ECGS about the Ford setups when I have him on the phone, my wifes FJ has a lifetime warranty from ECGS as her FJ was one of the first he ever did an ARB into the new Toyota 8" carrier (back in 07). So it took two tries to get it correct. Now we are 200K miles in and her rear carrier needs rebuilt again. I want to upgrade to the Toyota 8.2 axle but man thats alot of $$$$$$$$$........ $1500 for donor axle, $1800 for gears and ARB locker, new bearings, brakes, etc etc please send $$$$

The V8 rear 8.8 axles do have tabs for the "traction bars"
I hate those things, they limit flex like crazy. One of the first things I remove when I get a V8 explorer for personal use.....bye bye traction bars.. we are building off road trucks not drag racers!! Axle hop has never been a big problem for me, if it is I would at least make the traction bars removeable..........Rangers still have one shock on front one on back (this helps fight the axle hop too)
 




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...

I will ask Chase at ECGS about the Ford setups when I have him on the phone, my wifes FJ has a lifetime warranty from ECGS as her FJ was one of the first he ever did an ARB into the new Toyota 8" carrier (back in 07). So it took two tries to get it correct. Now we are 200K miles in and her rear carrier needs rebuilt again. I want to upgrade to the Toyota 8.2 axle but man thats alot of $$$$$$$$$........ $1500 for donor axle, $1800 for gears and ARB locker, new bearings, brakes, etc etc please send $$$$
...
Ouch, for that kind of money, what difference is the 8.8 rear to that 8.2 Toyota rear, and do they have the same ratios?
 




410Fortune

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I know right! So in 2010 the FJ and 4runner got a big rear axle upgrade the Toyota 8.2
Getting a used one just to build up is like $1500+ (Ebay) unless I find one local junk yard or CL.
Then you need to build it, these use unit bearings ($600), and of course the ARB and gears + labor = $$$$$$. I would get some trade in value from Chase on our old 8" diff and setup Im sure he would give us credit there and transfer the warranty......right? right? LOL
Other option is a Dana 60 or Ford 9" already built = $4500+

I keep threatening to use an Explorer 8.8 in there. The FJ axle is wider, the pumpkin is centered, it is coil sprung 5 link with 6 bolt wheel circle.....hard to duplicate with a 8.8
Still cant believe Yota used the same 8" rear axle in the 4700# FJ as the old pick em up trucks, in 2010 they finally added some beef
The gear ratios are similar, her FJ is 4.56 yukon ARB built by Chase
I just need to build like 15 rangers then I can have the money for a upgraded rear axle I keep trying to put her in a Ford but she keeps going back to her FJ LOL
 




gmanpaint

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Back in 2013, I brought the GF's 07 FJ to Toyo for a rear diff rebuild. The carrier bearing went out, and was still under warranty. It was cheaper for them to replace the entire 3rd member then replace that bearing. I asked how much to add the factory E-locker, they said another $5k!! I LOL at them, and installed an ARB for $1k. I seen they used the 8.0 & 8.2 in the heavy Seqouia's as well. That really doesn't make any sense to me. Why use the smaller units at all?

It would be neat to see the 8.8 make it's way under a Yoda. They convert them for coil sprung Heepers, so maybe someone will do it eventually?

Can't wait to see the Ranger updates start back up here. Stoked to see all these sweet parts going in.
 




CDW6212R

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I know right! So in 2010 the FJ and 4runner got a big rear axle upgrade the Toyota 8.2
Getting a used one just to build up is like $1500+ (Ebay) unless I find one local junk yard or CL.
Then you need to build it, these use unit bearings ($600), and of course the ARB and gears + labor = $$$$$$. I would get some trade in value from Chase on our old 8" diff and setup Im sure he would give us credit there and transfer the warranty......right? right? LOL
Other option is a Dana 60 or Ford 9" already built = $4500+

I keep threatening to use an Explorer 8.8 in there. The FJ axle is wider, the pumpkin is centered, it is coil sprung 5 link with 6 bolt wheel circle.....hard to duplicate with a 8.8
Still cant believe Yota used the same 8" rear axle in the 4700# FJ as the old pick em up trucks, in 2010 they finally added some beef
The gear ratios are similar, her FJ is 4.56 yukon ARB built by Chase
I just need to build like 15 rangers then I can have the money for a upgraded rear axle I keep trying to put her in a Ford but she keeps going back to her FJ LOL
I figured there were enough differences to make it tough.

... But thinking it over, what is the width difference? If you have a place that can change the housing length feasibly, I'd see what a pair of custom axles would cost. It's possible that the 8.8 housing could have the tubes changed enough to closely match the width needed, and get the chunk close to centered. An axle made with the needed six bolt flange, and a length with the 31 spline size, could be reasonable. How's that; food for thought?
 




boominXplorer

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Unfortunately Toyota axles are more stout than an 8.8. Toyota uses a setup very close to a ford 9" that supports the pinion bearings very well. You'd be going backwards trying to make it work in my opinion.
 


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410Fortune

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I may threaten too, but I'm not trying to put a Ford 8.8 in there. I just like to tease my wife about her yota and tell her it would be better off with some more Ford parts :)
A full width 8.8 would be pretty easy to modify, the hardest part maybe going from 5 on 5.5 to 6 on whatever it is bolt circle, it is not easy to put a 6 bolt circle on a 5 bolt shaft.
If there were axle tubes to cut and weld to center the diff/match yota width, I would do that work myself in house.
Now you still have to get custom axle shafts, re gear, locker and then setup coil buckets, 5 link tabs, so by the time all of this is done we are approaching the $4500 mark it would take just to buy a pre built Ford 9" that bolts in.
The FJ is one bad ass machine, the 8" has held up incredibly well for what it is, I mean 200K miles on 4.56 with 35" tires with a what 7.5" ring gear? Toyota axles are strong....
But even Toyota knew the old 8" was too small for the heavy FJ cruiser and 4 runner which is why the big strength upgrade in 2010
 
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