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Just got the van running

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As of about 45 minutes ago I got my van running.

For those that don't know, this has been a project that is about 3 1/2 years in the making an I am into it for about $25,000.

So far all looks good - coolant temp, exhaust gas temp, vacuum, exhaust gas content, fuel pressure, oil pressure etc. etc.

There are no leaks of any kind.

It is running now and has been running for about 1/2 hour at 1200 RPM

I will update and put up some pics once all the bugs are worked out, the body is put back together and the TV pressure is set.


caffeine junkie
Staff member
central Vermont
Cool! Must feel good to finally have the thing running, huh?

Can you remind me what all you did to this van?


Grabber Green Consultant
hey eco!!! congrats on getting it finally up and running!!!
........:beer: ........ CONGONGRAT'S to ya there, eco;
glad to here all's gone well for the initial start up.......YelloThumbUp

mr. Charles

Thanks y'all.

A few notes:

The dual filter kit got the oil capacity up to just under 8 quarts of oil.

The exhaust does not have any kind of scent to it even though there is no cat in the exhaust.

The motor runs VERY smooth.

My exhuast system has the manifolds, a Basani y-pipe which goes to a single 2.5" pipe. There are 2 mufflers in series which are 2.5" core stainless glasspacks more or less. The core of the mufflers is equal to the pipe, no back pressure. It has a "rump, rump, rump, snap, pop, rump, rump, rump, snap pop" sort of sound.


Post Whores Make Me Sick
HOLY CRAP I CAN'T BELIEVE IT!!! I thought I would never see the day when eco got his van running.

Any guys who don't know from our old section --- he ain't whistlin' dixie when he says he's had a non-running van for a LOOOONNNG time. That's great news eco, get some pics/vids/whatever up soon.

Is the drivetrain complete enough that you can drive it around the block? If not, what else is left on the checklist?
One of my two oil filters started leaking a little bit.

It appears that I will need a new battary.

I have an intermittant "buzzzzzzzz" noise that seems to be coming from the bell housing area of the trans. I can't seem to pin point the exact location - sometimes it sounds like it is coming from the starter area and sometimes it sounds like it is coming from another area of the bell housing. I have no idea what the heck that sound could be. I have yet to take the trans out of park. I am hoping that it is because the trans is slightly low on oil. I know for a fact that it is slightly low on oil. I have not made a point to get the fluid level set since the trans wont be leaving "park" for a while.

Skan, the drivetrain is complete, but the TV line needs to be dialed in. I am not going to be driving until I have all the bugs worked out.
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Post Whores Make Me Sick
You sure you're using the right starter? Nighthawk had some some crazy noises after his ZF swap because he was using the wrong starter. Food for thought ;)


PA Chapter leader
central PA
Cooooollll . I want to see some pics when u get a chance. U have had some really interesting sounding projects over the years .. Later

I got the new battery. A big old honkin battery made for commercial use on big trucks.

The EGR is deleted and no check engine light has been set.

I have had my exhaust gas analyzer hooked up for most of the time that it has been running and at first I didn't notice anything strange. But, once it hit closed loop I noticed that the O2 was high and the CO2 was low. NOX, HC and CO looked good. The analyzer has a readout for AF ratio and Lambda. The AF ratio was very lean...something like 25:1 - NOT GOOD! CO2 is basically an indicator of engine efficiency and O2 is a leaness indicator. If CO2 is low, that means that the AF ratio is off and efficiency is thus low. At this point one has to look at O2 and CO to see if the motor is rich or lean. Since my O2 was high, then that basically tells me that the system was LEAN. If CO was high, then that would indicate a rich mixture. So, I richened the mixture with my AIR ADJUSTER with hopes of the O2 going down and CO2 going up. Well, the O2 went down AS WELL AS the CO2, not to mention the motor ran like crap. Hmmmmm, what the heck! If it is lean and I richen the mixture, CO2 should go up due to the increased efficiency AND the motor shoud run BETTER. But it was not happening that way.

Then I got to thinking....the gas that I am using has 10% alcohol content and the other 90% being gasoline (Shell V-POWER E10). That alcohol is an oxygenate and the oxygen that it brings to the equation makes it's way into the exhaust stream. Oxygen in the exhaust stream dillutes the CO2 which would cause O2 emissions to rise and CO2 emissions to fall. Air injection (thermactor) systems have the same effect. The AF ratio and Lambda readings that I was looking at were programmed with 100% gasoline in mind and they were thrown off by the alcohol in the fuel. All the other readings were correct, but the software was unable to use them to make AF ratio calculations. So, what this means is that my emissions are DEAD ON and the motor is running well. My emissions look a lot like a good running motor with air injection that runs on 100% gasoline.

Skan, the starter is one thing that I have not replaced, so I doubt thats the problem.
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Battery is installed. It fit perfectly.

The body is all put together other than the hood and the hood latch. I will do that next weekend. The grill and the "air deflector" thingy that goes between the bumper and grill are both a pain in the butt to install - lots of hard to get to fasteners. I used regular nuts, bolts and washers to put it all together as opposed to the factory style clips.

I re-torqued all the exhaust studs.

I am thinking that the oil filter leak is there because one of the filters isn't quite tight enough. I will pick up an oil filter socket that an be used with a 3/8 drive ratchet and tighten it down a little more. Hopefully that will fix it.

I have a exhuast hose coming so that I can route the exhaust gas outside while the motor runs inside that way I don't gas the place up. I wont run it anymore till I get this hose, which should be June 28th.

To do list:

Now that I have it running I will go through through the breakout box with a scopemeter and look for any red flags.

Dial in the AF ratio. I am not sure how to go about doing this though since I don't have any info on E10 exhaust gases.

Set up the TV cable - I will do that when I have the engine management system squared away.

Bleed the brakes.

As of Saturday I am now DEBT FREE! I cancled and paid off all my credit cards (I had 3 cards, $12,000 total including tax debt).
Once I get the van all put together, dialed in and get access to a digital camara I will start a "pic thread".

As for now, I am still working on my previous to-do list.

With the long weekend coming up I should be able to make alot of progress.
Basically, everything that could be done from bumper to bumper to make the van "new and improved" to my own liking.

To give you an general idea the motor is .030 over with a RV cam, MAF conversion (not easy on a van since the kit is for a truck), AOD trans with a shift kit and heavy duty bands, new 3.55 differential with a detroit locker, all new exhaust componets, all new suspension components, full MSD ignition system, all new parts under the hood, manual steering conversion etc. etc. + more.

Thats basically what I have done, there much more in the details and I will document it all in my pic thread when I get to that.
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