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bats 88 Bronco II Build Up


bats

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Mmm supercharger. Brett's thread was where I started my reading and found another guy on here who laid out all the little details.

Trans will be fine. The rebuilt 5spd I got came from behind a SOHC according to the ebay seller and extra bolt hole.

The whole running off the OHV computer really tickles me and I think it fits nicely with the theme of this build. I took a read through Sticos thread and he went fancy and swapped the newer wiring harness. Nah, that's not my style.

I've had a few second gens and I think it motivated them pretty good. Now in a vehicle a few hundred lbs lighter... hoowee!

So we can't talk about the SOHC without talking timing chains...I guess if I luck out and can hear the donor engine run I'll chance it? It doesn't look like a difficult job, just a bunch of tedious little steps. One day at a time.
 


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gmanpaint

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A couple other things to consider...

M5OD-R1 might not handle the higher HP too well. I would want a fresh rebuilt unit with a racing clutch setup. Or, get the manual made for the SOHC? No idea if you can convert the R1 or not.

SOHC chains take special expensive tools, to install them ( so I heard).

Could buy a 5.0L donor for the price of the SOHC rebuild?
 




bats

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gman, the manual in there did come from behind a SOHC. It has the extra hole (giggity) for SOHC mounting purposes. I bought it rebuilt and I'd really like to keep it if I can.

It's tough finding donor vehicles around here. Anything wrecked gets snatched up by the scrappers within hours of posting and anything that sort of drive goes for close to $2K. Going to have to expand my search radius.
 




gmanpaint

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I understand wanting to keep the manual. They make the experience of operating it, feel like your part of the machine. Plus it's safe from thieving youngsters that can't drive a manual. Lol

Have you tried search tempest? You can set the search radius on it, and it finds your keywords in a variety of sale sites.
 




bats

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After many failed attempts at dealing with Craigslist and FB marketplace I finally have a solid lead on a motor. People, man. What a bunch of dumba$$es. We'll get to that later this month.

Removed everything I could off the firewall to assess the damage:


Not pretty. The rain channel in the cowl was clogged with dirt which led to it rusting right at the seam. If not for the steering column/brake booster bracket I peal back that part of the firewall. Also, it looks like some dumb kid butchered part of the firewall trying to make the Explorer steering column fit...what a dummy. Plan plan is to make one or two panels and pop rivet em in place. Rustoleum everything back up and call it a day.

The big white white plug (BWP) was flopping around and was starting to wear through some wires. I removed the entire harness but had to dremel off the retaining bolt on the BWP. Slimmed down the harness a bit. The ABS stuff takes up a lot of wires. Started at the BWP and pulled the unneeded wires back as I identified them. Left the power leads. I'll tidy them up and dead head them until I have a use.

That bundle of red wires is for the wiper motor. They're hard wired to a switch that gives me simple fast-off-slow. Through dumb luck I made this all work and the ONLY thing that I couldn't get going with factory wiring was the wipers. Not too shabby.
 




bats

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Few weeks ago I picked up a rebuilt OHV from another forum member. 410 Cam, 95TM heads, SOHC oil pan and pump and Pacesetter headers. Huzzah!

Firewall was cleaned, patched and painted. Engine in and bolted up. Now it's down to the detail work. All the little devilish details to make sure this turns out right.

Putting the harness back in and repairing a bunch of frayed wires. Routing said harness and fuel lines and brake lines. Never really noticed that the fuel lines went right on top of the headers. Picking up some heat shield stuff for that and a dozen other places. Making sure I don't muck up bleeding the clutch again. Undoing all sorts of half assery younger me did.

Depending on how ambitious I am this week, I should be ready to crank this time next weekend.
 




bats

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IT RUNS AND IT'S GLORIOUS!

Got most of the wiring harness re-wrapped and tucked away. Drivers side of the engine bay still a bit of a rats nest but nothing's arcing. Couldn't figure out why the fuel pump wouldn't turn on. Check your grounds kids. Are they tight or just kind of sitting there? That's what I thought.

Cranked the engine sans sparkplugs/fuel pump for a few minutes. Could hear the difference once the oil primed. Read normal on the gauge. Reconnected the rest of the ignition stuff and it fired right up!! Boy does it sound mean. Much healthier than the old motor. Idles normal 98% of the time. When it gets too lopey, if I tap the gas it evens right out.

Clutch master still needs to be hooked up so next weekend it should be driving again.
 




bats

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We have movement! El Bastard moved under it's own power tonight. Just drove around the yard in first gear. Have a bunch of holes to fill in tomorrow... Preliminary Butt Dyno says definitely has more power. Got up to operating temp. No leaks!

Bunch of headaches to get here though. Starter made some horrible crunchy noises. Replaced it, still a little noisy starting. When I put everything back together this time, I skipped the plate between the engine and transmission. Rather than drop the trans, I trimmed off the piece where the starter sits and bolted everything back on. Seems better now.

Couple minor electrical gremlins from snipping the wiring harness. Not a big deal there.

Clutch is funky though. Took some beers and head scratching to figure out what the deal was. Clutch grabs when the pedal is barely off the floor, little hard to get into gear. The problem? Throw length. (We think. Did the whole upside clutch bleeding ritual.) This time around I made sure the clutch pushrod was properly seated in the clutch master cylinder which decreased my clutch pedal throw by about a half inch. That's our theory at least.
 




410Fortune

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Sounds like you may still have some air trapped in the master cylinder
try this

 




bats

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We did initially have air in the line. Could tell a difference when it cleared up. The problem DID end up being the pedal throw. With the push rod snapped all the way in to place, the piston wasn't being pushed all the way in. Maybe something to do with firewall differences between a Bronco II and an Explorer? Whatever the case, I found a solution.

I still had the pushrod/master that wasn't connected. Cut the pushrod in half, tapped to 1/4 inch and put an adjusting sleeve in between.


Was able to swap out the master cylinder without letting too much air in. Held it up side down and bled with a screw driver and then used this neat little idea I read about somewhere to get the rest of the air out. Put it all back together and clutch is working perfectly.


That is a bathtub stopper with a fitting from the self brake bleeder kit on the hand pump.

With all that squared away, I got in an actual test drive. New motor is VERY rev happy. Hits 3K like it's nothing and doesn't sound like it's straining. Pulls like a beast but is still refined. It' just.....smooth. Comfortable cruising at 65 MPH. (Spedo started working some how.) I should hookup the rest of the exhaust though...

Only hiccup on the test drive:

So I forgot the hood pins. Minor detail. Nothing a body slam and some BFH action won't fix.

Overall I'm really happy with this setup. Is it as rowdy as a V8? No. Does it have more giddyup then before? Heck yeah! Does it spark more joy than a Las Vegas Jello Wrestling competition? Well no, but it's damn close.
 




410Fortune

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Dang I did that once too.....left my hood pins out. Made it all the way to drop the kid off at school and halfway home WHAMO..... dented my cowl up pretty good. I was not happy!
On the next truck I built I left the safety latch in place..........

Nice trick on the clutch! Have you considered adding jamb nuts to the adjuster in the clutch rod? So nothing moves around......

4.0 + BII = yes please
 








bats

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Since last post I wrapped up the driver side wiring. Extended a few wires and ziptied them neatly in to place. Fuel lines were an issue because the pacesetter headers have HUGE flanges and they were resting right on them. Tucked them off to the side with some bracketry. Redid the intake again. The stock 4.0 one hits the battery and has a habit of getting too close to the alternator pulley. Much happier with where it all sits now.

Go to fire it up aannndd won't stay running. Fires up sputters after a few seconds and then dies without fail. Feathering the pedal sort of keeps it running but not well. Steady fuel pressure at just under 40 PSI. Fuel pump running. Didn't hear any vac leaks. Plugs are sooty but dry. MAF plugged in. I'm using the 92 computer which ran well without the O2 sensors plugged in last time it drove. New fuel line brackets don't appear to be pinching. No leaks.

Tried to pull codes but the paperclip method wasn't working for some reason. Called it a day, warming up with some whisky and having another go tomorrow.
 




bats

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Okay, I think I figured out where I mess up. Looks like I need the GRY/RED wires for various signal grounds. Will retrace and replace them and report back. That's what I get for pushing on when I really should go to sleep.

46 GRY/RED Signal Return (Sensor Ground)
49 GRY/RED Ground
 




drakon543

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so as this thread recently popped up i skimmed over a few things. im glad to see a bronco 2 getting some love had alot of great times with one. when i was little my dad bought one brand new i think it was a 1990??? anyway he kept it around for a while until the typical 2.9 head problem hit. sat in his yard for a couple of years i found an 88 with a good 2.9 and just swapped the motor and a bunch of other salvageable parts. me and my dad would trade it back and forth for a couple more years until a tree fell on it. remember sitting on my dads lap driving it lol which ended up with me putting it into a ditch. we went off roading a few times together with it before the engine went bad.
 




410Fortune

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yes grey with red is called SSR or sensor signal return, it is a ground wire that the computer monitors many sensors with
 




bats

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Yep, that was the ticket. There's one GRY/Red wire coming from the harness that goes on top of the engine. I made it a ground as well as the other one on the brown plug. As a test, I used paperclips to reconnect them to the ECU since I might have snipped the leads off...no difference than just grounding them to the body. Made permanent ground leads and we're back to business.

That idle makes me giddy. Tightened up the exhaust and it's almost as quiet as the factory setup. The lope is subtle but you blip the throttle and know we're gonna have a good time.
 




bats

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The headaches continue. Since last post I was chasing a no charging alternator issue. Replaced it with a 130 AMP because it was noisy anyways. Followed all the troubleshooting threads on here. What I think is the issue is the firewall harness isn't connecting securely enough. To get the wiring harness out, I had to cut off the bolt that pulls them together. It held it in place good enough to run. After much wiggling and cleaning of the terminals, the charging issue appeared to fix itself.

Can't see any broken wires on the interior side of the firewall harness but if I wiggle it, it kills everything or cuts the fuel pump. Confirmed it's on that side by gently pinching the wires and listening to the relays click on and off. I would barely touch the big fat yellow ignition wire and it would click on and off. If I held the harness together by tightly hand and flail/pinch/wiggle it I can't get it to die for the life of me.

I made an attempt at making some convoluted brackets to sandwhich the two halves together between the firewall but gave up after the sawzal blade snapped off inside the holder. Might find a universal bulkhead electrical connector and repin to that. If there's anything I've learned working on cars, it's that I'm a bit of a masochist.
 




bats

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One of the last things keeping me from hitting the road was my brake lights didn't work. This time it WASN'T a result of me getting snip happy. The bushing that goes on the brake pedal arm that the brake light switch rests on (Not the two white ones) crumbled what I took everything apart. Easy enough to replace. For some reason after replacing the bushing I couldn't get the stop lamp switch to sit just right agianst the brake plunger. Brake lights still activated when triggered.

Gave up trying to make that work and brainstormed a better solution. Replaced the cruise control deactivator vacuum switch with an electrial switch. When the paddle pushes up on the button, the circuit is broken therefore no brakelights. Made a collar out of a washer so I could tighten it down without it spinning. Used a very precise method of ductaping cardboard to the paddle until it worked just right.


Test fitting the switch on a spare assembly. I spent way too much time on this.



Went for a test drive. With the firewall sealed up, it's almost pleasant to drive. Rich Corinthian leather seats. Heat. Power Windows. Pure luxury.
 


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410Fortune

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Are you still using the bronco II alternator wires? the yellow/white and the large charging wire to the battery (black with orange on later years)
 




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