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Discussion Starter · #41 ·
OK so we have moved so I am now where my Astro has been since April. This is my list to get it running and a list to get it legal here in New Hampshire. Not in order.
Replace linkage inside of transmission. Which involves dropping the valve body enough to put the linkage in. Then getting the engine to TDC dropping dizy in and firing it up. Set timing, fill transmission , adjust floor shift linkage. bleed brakes, fill and bleed steering fluid. Check and fill coolant system. install serpentine belt. finish efan install.

To get it legal in New Hampshire: check all lights, horn, e brake, have exhaust custom made. replace 1 cv axle
Get alignment since I replaced the control arms back in March.
In both NH and Maine if you have any add on lights they must be in working order so I am going to remove the off road lights prior to going for safety inspection (much easier then wiring them at this point.
I have a document from the VA that allows me to have tinted windows in any state due to light sensitivity so I am good on that regard. Oh and I need to swap the registration to NH since I now own a home here. Thanks for reading, Mark
 

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Discussion Starter · #42 ·
In California you have to change your license to a California license within 90 days once you move there which also means if you live there only part time after 90 days you have to get licensed there. Well I thought that was stupid then I go to register my Astro in New Hampshire and get veterans plates they won't allow you to unless you get a New Hampshire license. But my van is registered in Maine (my home state) so they don't care and so I kept it registered in Maine with disabled veteran plates. Its raining here for the next 3 days or so then I can get back to fixing stuff on it. Thanks for reading-goal is to be on the road soon!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #43 ·
OK so I bought the s-10 leaf springs did a bit of modifying to them for comfort (feel free to ask what I did) I had already installed steel leaf's then added the shackles then decided to go with the s-10 springs. So anyway with the shackles I put the new leaf springs in the highest hole and this gave me one inch of lift over the stock leaf's in the bottom holes. But I now have 4 leaf's instead of 3. In order to do this I had to knock the welded bolt out of the brackets that go under the axle and install longer grade 8 bolts. And my factory rear sway bar (RS) will need to be loosened completely to re install and then tightened. I will take pictures as I take the other side apart and put it together as this side was a learning experience for me so my mistakes were fixed and the other side will be easier and I will be ale to take pictures as I go.
 

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Discussion Starter · #45 ·
Just a little info on my Astro van: I bought it to build it into what I wanted not to impress anyone or prove anything and what I had envisioned at first changed as I myself got older. The reason it is not done and on the road is because I am in no hurry to finish it. It keeps me busy since doctors say I can not work I can't simply sit around and wait for death to take me. It is close to being done to drive, new or rebuilt brake system, transmission, suspension, fuel system and at the same time I upgraded everything to perform better then stock. I modified the electrical system too. It was a V6 now its a V8 it was rear wheel drive now it is all wheel drive. I enjoy learning as I go so is it hurting anyone for it now to be done? Well since it is mine and I say it hurts no one then believe me when I tell you it is not for lack of knowledge or desire to try something new to me it is simply My project and it will be done when I say it is but not close to being ready for paint. . Thanks for reading:
 

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I vote for the Gunmetal and Black paint scheme

Hey Bro no need for apologies or explanations here we all know how it goes with a big project... look how far it has come...and while moving your entire life from one coast to another :thumbup: keep up the good work you inspire!
I also know the frustration that comes with not being able to work , I am lucky I can still work on my own projects it keeps me somewhat sane...deadlines are for the poor people still stuck in the Rat Race...
 

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2000 Lifted 4x4 Astro 92 V8-350 Shorty
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markmitch said:
recent picture, I still will need to do some torsion bar tweaking but its close.
That's pretty SPORTY! Looking GOOD!
ALWAYS more fun to drive them! :D
Always time for tweaks along the way too...
 

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Discussion Starter · #51 ·
OK so to do this whole swap as I mentioned before the pass side exhaust manifold if from a mid 80's truck and not the same as the drivers side, I ran into a few problems due to this: The triangle flange on the drivers side is totally different from the passenger side so after ordering a few different ones and then finding a site that explains how to measure them to fit I finally got the right down pipes per side and the correct flange and the right donut gaskets. I installed them today and Wednesday weather permitting I will be welding the rest of the exhaust one section at a time. I will have one 2 foot section that will be bolted on so if I ever need to take it off for any reason I will be able to. I will take pictures when I am doing it and posting them. Thanks for reading, Mark
 

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Discussion Starter · #52 ·
One problem after another! Today I finished brazing the exhaust enough to start my engine so I can set the timing, I noticed a leak under the van so I shut it off right away. Some how I either blew a head gasket or I blew the intake gasket which makes no sense but I have a mix of coolant and oil coming out of the oil filter location. So I ordered new head gasket kit from fel-pro and new intake and head bolts. It looks like I may not get it on the road for winter. But I will keep trying.
 

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Discussion Starter · #53 ·
Today I was looking at the gasket surface of the intake and it looks like the rear gasket for the intake may have been the problem but I have the engine ready to come out tomorrow morning so I may as well pull the heads and replace the gaskets and bolts since I already ordered them. I finished all the prep this afternoon so as I said I will pull it in the morning and roll it into my barn for winter. Hopefully all goes well for spring to get it on the road.
 

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Discussion Starter · #55 ·
I am in a cold state so van is on hold but I am ordering stuff to finish it over the winter .I hope to get it on the road early summer then drive it to where ever we decide to move next. Wife says the next house we buy will be our last. Once I get to the next home I hope to build up the parts to go with a 4x4 transfer case. This was my original idea when I decided to swap the frames so I am not going to give up on that idea. I hope to use the same set up as mmusicman did. But I have a floor shift for the transmission so I have to make sure his home made shifter for the transfer will fit.
 

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Discussion Starter · #56 ·
I started slowly picking up parts for the transfer swap, I had a lead on the transfer but the shipping was twice as much as the transfer so I decided not to order it. Seems my wife constantly changes her mind about where to move next. So for now I am getting everything I need to get this van on the road asap. Today I am going to go out and spray wd 40 into the cylinders and turn the engine over just to be safe since the engine has no oil in it because I never got to put the oil filter relocation parts together before snow hit. I took mmusicmans idea for the shifter for the transfer case but went a little different. Pics to come when its finished.
 

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Discussion Starter · #58 ·
OK so for you that seen my post about going back to California here's what changes I will have to make to my van to get it legal there once I get settled. The 2 inch exhaust system will go like this to be smog legal there. 2inch pipes from manifolds drivers side pipe will cross over to pass side then the passenger side pipe will come down and meet the drivers side pipe go into a dual 2 out to a single 3 inch pipe making a Y pipe. from there it goes into a brand new catalytic converter (California legal for 91 Silverado) then a 3 inch strait pipe then into a single in dual out muffler. From there I will have 2 two inch tail pipes that turn down right under the rear bumper. I have the muffler and converter from a past project so why not use it. If I can not get my Astro on the road to drive to California by June first I will have to leave it here for a while.
 

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Discussion Starter · #59 ·
Today it got to 70 degrees here in NH so I climbed under my van got the starter , and flywheel cover installed, got the passenger side exhaust pipe on put the brackets on, ac compressor, and alternator back on. I also worked on the big Ford for about an hour since I am driving t back to California in June I have a few things to do to prep for the trip. Its suppose to rain Saturday and Sunday here so I got some time in before the rain comes. Mark
 

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My 89 Astro RS has had many modifications over the years and is close to being done (surprised?) so to keep me going I decided to buy an AWD frame and take it to the next level. I have a list and pictures of what I need and what I wish to do started and will post it here and as I purchase things I will add those pics too.
My ideas so far: Front awd frame from a newer Astro/Safari from pick n pull will be stripped at the yard and will cost approximately 100 bucks. Front axle from 1994 to 2004 S-10 Blazer with 4.3/5 speed trans (cast iron instead of aluminum) stock from suspension from same frame-no clue on cost yet., I will be using a 4x4 transfer from an S-10 cost is 180.00 pnp. I will need to get a 700R4 case somewhere to remove my guts into since my transmission is a fresh rebuild basically. I will post more info as I go.. This will be a slow process as money comes available. I already added steel rear springs and 11" drums so that is done. Left kit will come last. Thanks for reading, Mark
I got all my 4x4 swap from awd at pull n pat junk yard got 28 spline transfer case that was cable shift from 97 or 8 olds bravado I think ..all cost under 80 bucks .and I did replace a bearing n seals n gaskets resealed rather ..that was 22 bucks ..but came out good
 
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