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2000 Lifted 4x4 Astro 92 V8-350 Shorty
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Glad to see it getting a new home and a new lease on life!
Yeah.. I guess it's better than sitting in a parking lot for years growing mold.. lol
Just needs a little love...

* * * UPDATE * * *

The van made it safely to it's new home in Cottonwood Al... towed great!
The ONLY incident I'm told, was getting 10mpg while pulling it for 13 hours...lol
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It was my van briefly for a couple weeks. It's in good hands now.
This story now enters it's next new chapter... where it will be brought back to life.
 
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Well had a good day at the junkyard. Got a new bumper until I can finish my bumper project. And a pair of cloth Buckets with armrests and under seat pull out drawer.
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. Plus the rubber cup holder inserts. And a wiper motor.
 

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Reached 300,000 km a few days ago. 2001 Safari SLE I bought 12 years ago with 180,000 km already on it. Have done all the maintenance/repair work myself(thanks to all the helpful posts on these forums). Have lived in my van now for almost 4 years. It is possible to do repairs (intake manifold gasket,muffler,fuel spider,fuel pump,radiator...) while living in your van if you can find a quiet empty lot preferably near an autoparts store. So happy I can fix my own vehicle(unlike more modern cars).
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2000 Lifted 4x4 Astro 92 V8-350 Shorty
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Did a "SEMA Collector Car Appreciation Show" in Pompano Beach today.
Sunny.. high 80's with nice tropical breeze all day...
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Last weekend did a couple shows... Coral Springs and Miami Springs.
Keeping busy even during summer... gig van gets to come out and play.
 
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2000 Lifted 4x4 Astro 92 V8-350 Shorty
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* * JUNK VAN UPDATE * *
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The free 2004 Astro cargo arrived at it's new home in Alabama.
  • It is estimated it was parked for about 4-5 years.
  • Relays were all unknowingly pulled... replaced from one of our other junk vans
  • Wiper motor not working
  • New battery
  • Old fuel (3/4 tank) was pumped out, new filter, new gas... Sea-Foam added.
  • Started up GREAT. 1st short test-drive revealed hanging rear brake caliper.
  • 2nd short test drive... trans shifted thru all 4 gears (condition still uncertain)
  • Rear emergency shoe bent/damaged, caliper sticking, pads bad.. ordered new.

Van washed... (cleaned up pretty nicely)
(ladder rack needs to come off)
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That's it for now...
(until it's taken out on the open road)
 
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Those of you who REMOVED your REAR A/C units...
How's that working out for you?
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Mine is still there, it's the little one on the wall above the gas filler. It hasn't worked in the 14 years I've owned the van, so I'm used to it.
 

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A while back I found the big refrigerant leak and bought the seal and several cans of 134A to try to fix it. I also did a full tune up, new injector, new distributor at the same time. That was when I spun a bearing on the test drive afterwards. I never did get around to repairing the AC. The rear unit consists of a blower, an evaporator (and a ruptured heater core) just behind the driver side B pillar. My van does not have the vents up on the ceiling.
 

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Broke my trailer hitch this morning.
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I think it might be a little rusty, will have to look into a new one.

-Andrew
 
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Broke my trailer hitch this morning.
I think it might be a little rusty, will have to look into a new one.
WOW! Well good thing it didn't happen going down the highway.
Probably nothing a little Navel Jelly, JB Weld, and some touch-up paint can't fix! lol
YIKES!
 

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1992 Astro - Silver / Gray / 4 Wheels
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...it's the little one on the wall above the gas filler....
I do not comment much anymore... but this made me.

While I realize you have a "Conversion Van", I did not think there were any AC units installed behind the driver's seat / B pillar / by the gas filler.
OE had the OPT HEAT there and the OPT AC at the back corner with the aforementioned vent ducting system above it.

But... all bets are off since it's a conversion & had/has something totally different than any I have heard of...
- or that came with a van w/ options.


All the best to you, Charlie.
 

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2000 Lifted 4x4 Astro 92 V8-350 Shorty
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COUPLE MINOR REPAIRS:

My 2000... I replaced a leaking rear pinion seal.
I'm getting ready for a trip from South Florida to VA next week towing my motorcycle.
I scribed the nut and pinion shaft (with file) so I could line back up and reuse parts.
This is important so crush-sleeve isn't crushed further and bearing pre-load remains same.
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Knocked the old seal out easily with a large screw-driver
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This is my make-shift tool for squarely pounding in the new seal...lol
It's a piece of exhaust pipe (that fit seal perfectly) with a piece of wood taped on the end where I smacked it in.
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This tool (although not exact fit) was close enough for pinion nut
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I used red Locktite on nut.
It all went back together without issue.
I think (if I remember correctly) I changed this seal previously about 5 or 6 years ago.

I'm taking it for a "test drive" to Orlando tomorrow before my long out-of-state trip next week. I've also got a leaking front axle seal (passenger side) which I'll change this weekend when I get back, before the big trip.

While I was under there, I took some more accurate pinion/drive-shaft/trans angle measurements. I've made corrective adjustments to the transfer case recently, and needed matching parallel alignment on the pinion yoke. I pulled out the pinion shims I had previously installed, and it's all correct again.

UPDATE: My 500 mile round-trip drive to Orlando went without any incident.
This coming week I'll be heading to VA with motorcycle in tow.
 
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2000 Lifted 4x4 Astro 92 V8-350 Shorty
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My 92:

Replaced blown bushings on my rear lift-shackles. Both sides were completely blown out.
Firm shifts (behind my V8) really banged bushings metal to metal.

I lifted my van with floor jack and block under trailer-hitch (no photo)
It's being held up (in this photo) by jack-stands further up (with rear-end hanging freely)
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To pull shackles, I did not need to disconnect shocks
(you can flex springs up or down easily by hand to slide out bolts)
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I suspect petroleum-based grease ate up the bushings, since they were only a few years old.
Poly-urethane manufacturers suggest to use ONLY silicone based grease.
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For reference, bushings (on these lift shackles) are 1.5" OD x 3/4" ID (for sleeve)
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Sleeve is 3/4" OD x 1/2" ID (x 3.5" long for Gen1 monoleaf)
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I found replacement bushings by Energy Suspension #3.2124G for $18 Amazon (also available in red)
This bushing set will work for either Gen 1 or Gen 2 using this brand lift shackle
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Product comes with 4 bushings, 2 sleeves (not used).. and silicone grease.

All cleaned up, lubed, and ready to go in.
I recommend (this time) do not use zerk fittings (pumped with petroleum based grease)...
but coat bushings with silicone grease by hand.
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FUN NOTE: Due to weak worn springs... I run diver-side one hole higher than passenger side
(to compensate for weight and worn DS spring... to level the vehicle)
Each hole is good for 1/2" lift increment (since adjusting only rear side of spring)
Van now sits perfectly level (left to right)
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Only hand tools needed for entire job: 13/16 wrench, 13/16 ratchet & socket, 7/8 wrench
Both sides done (job about 20 min per side max)
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Took it for it's test drive next morning to local car show... rode great as always!
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Happy again... LIFE IS GOOD!
 
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MEMORY -- 4 YEARS AGO TODAY:
My office view today swapping out an AWD transfer case with a true 4x4 transfer case..
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The upgrade has been GREAT!!
 
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