Author Topic: 1997 Ford F350 Diesel 5sp  (Read 6655 times)

wantahertzdonut

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1997 Ford F350 Diesel 5sp
« on: May 20, 2013, 12:11:46 AM »
Just picked this up yesterday for towing a toy hauler, 1997 F350 reg cab 2wd with a diesel and 5sp.  XL interior but has the few options I actually want; cruise control and working A/C.  Only 117k miles and I plan on adding many to that. 

It's pretty plain-jane but I'd like to get some better seats, the bench seat has zero support and you get chucked all over the front if you hit any big bumps.  I hope to find a wrecked Lariat or something with a nicer interior to steal the carpeting and get a center console in there.  It has a decent stereo and also has a tuner with aftermarket exhaust.  It's a tad loud but I'll deal.  Also looking for a cap for the bed.

On to the pics:







Going to have to do something about those tacky stickers on the rear window




Why do the loudest stereos belong to those with the worst taste in music?

Scuba

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Re: 1997 Ford F350 Diesel 5sp
« Reply #1 on: May 20, 2013, 01:53:45 PM »
Real trucks don't have spark plugs? lol, you should totally keep that one....

Cool truck, it doesn't look much bigger than recent model F-150's...

ling427ttvette

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Re: 1997 Ford F350 Diesel 5sp
« Reply #2 on: May 20, 2013, 06:57:39 PM »
Very jelly of you right now. I like these old Fords, my buddy has a 96 like this only single wheel and 4wd and I want it bad. Just can't justify having it right now. Them 7.3's love to eat glow plugs. Everyone I have been around needs them replaced. My old FedEx truck had to be parked inside AND plugged in when it got 70 or below.. it was a cold blooded bitch. Ran good once it warmed up though.

wantahertzdonut

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Re: 1997 Ford F350 Diesel 5sp
« Reply #3 on: May 20, 2013, 09:56:57 PM »
Scuba-  Yes, it is pretty small by today's standards, but it's also really maneuverable because of it.  I'm not a fan of big bloated trucks anyway so it suits us.  My girlfriend will have to drive it from time to time so for her smaller was better.

I'll have a friend of mine that works at a local Ford dealer go through it as soon as he's available to fit it in.  I'll have him check the glow plugs (and hope they're not swollen) as well as the injectors, fluids, etc.  I'm still learning diesels so I'd like to have someone in the know help me out here. 

Ling-  Your friend has a nice sounding truck.  I hear you on the justification, I wanted something like this for years but balked because I had no need.  Now I do so it was time to pull the trigger.  Once I'm done towing, this will go too.  It's a lot of vehicle to lug around if you aren't using it for what it's designed to do.

No cold start issues that I can tell so far.  Fortunately.  But it's been 60 or above since I got it.  I'll know more when I can get it checked out.

Also need to find some bigger mirrors.  The ones on it are pure shit and virtually useless, even without the trailer.  They only seem to move L-R and not up and down.  I get a great view of my rear tires and not much else.
« Last Edit: May 20, 2013, 10:50:00 PM by wantahertzdonut »
Why do the loudest stereos belong to those with the worst taste in music?

GTR

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Re: 1997 Ford F350 Diesel 5sp
« Reply #4 on: May 25, 2013, 10:15:19 PM »
Had the exact same truck when I worked for CAA (road side aka tow truck) had well over 600k kms when i had it and its still going. used to tow things it had no buisness towing, had to have a bumper made with weights to keep the front wheels from lifting was noisy loud and ruff, but an amazing ride.
I used to be G.T.S-T
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wantahertzdonut

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Re: 1997 Ford F350 Diesel 5sp
« Reply #5 on: May 26, 2013, 11:44:10 AM »
Had the exact same truck when I worked for CAA (road side aka tow truck) had well over 600k kms when i had it and its still going. used to tow things it had no buisness towing, had to have a bumper made with weights to keep the front wheels from lifting was noisy loud and ruff, but an amazing ride.

Did you have the same mirrors or something bigger?  I have to get something else but I'm not sure what to look for.  Most everything on Ebay is for the newer body style trucks.
Why do the loudest stereos belong to those with the worst taste in music?

Gremlin

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Re: 1997 Ford F350 Diesel 5sp
« Reply #6 on: May 26, 2013, 01:16:06 PM »
Did you have the same mirrors or something bigger?  I have to get something else but I'm not sure what to look for.  Most everything on Ebay is for the newer body style trucks.
Your best bet would be "Western mirrors" they mount around the vent window on the A pillar. They can be purchased at any truck supply shop or online.

This is what they look like. I have them on my old F-250

GTR

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Re: 1997 Ford F350 Diesel 5sp
« Reply #7 on: May 27, 2013, 08:19:42 PM »
mine were the same just with blind spot mirrors added, truck makers at the time apparently did not believe in being able to see whats behind or next to you
I used to be G.T.S-T
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jeepidude

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Re: 1997 Ford F350 Diesel 5sp
« Reply #8 on: May 27, 2013, 09:20:21 PM »
You guys must be used to some crazy wide convex mirrors or something, those stockers stick out way further than anything I've ever used.

That truck looks great, btw! I like the look of those Fords  :)

wantahertzdonut

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Re: 1997 Ford F350 Diesel 5sp
« Reply #9 on: May 28, 2013, 12:12:14 AM »
You guys must be used to some crazy wide convex mirrors or something, those stockers stick out way further than anything I've ever used.

That truck looks great, btw! I like the look of those Fords  :)

Are you talking about mine or Gremlin's?
Why do the loudest stereos belong to those with the worst taste in music?

jeepidude

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Re: 1997 Ford F350 Diesel 5sp
« Reply #10 on: May 28, 2013, 01:05:21 AM »
Are you talking about mine or Gremlin's?
yours

angry hampster

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Re: 1997 Ford F350 Diesel 5sp
« Reply #11 on: May 28, 2013, 07:52:53 PM »
Your best bet would be "Western mirrors" they mount around the vent window on the A pillar. They can be purchased at any truck supply shop or online.

This is what they look like. I have them on my old F-250





I didn't know you are from Waterloo. :)

Gremlin

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Re: 1997 Ford F350 Diesel 5sp
« Reply #12 on: May 28, 2013, 08:29:49 PM »



I didn't know you are from Waterloo. :)
And only dream of a truck that nice and new :lol:

wantahertzdonut

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Re: 1997 Ford F350 Diesel 5sp
« Reply #13 on: May 28, 2013, 10:58:18 PM »
You guys must be used to some crazy wide convex mirrors or something, those stockers stick out way further than anything I've ever used.

That truck looks great, btw! I like the look of those Fords  :)
yours

These stupid things don't have any vertical adjustment and the only thing I can get a look at is my rear tire.  If I want to see where my trailer wheels are, or have any idea if there's a vehicle nearby, I need to hunch way down in the seat.  Not comfortable or safe, especially with a trailer.

I may have been spoiled by the mirrors on the busses I drove in college, but even the normal mirrors on my 79 Suburban were at least 4X the size of these mirrors.  Heck, my 4Runner has bigger mirrors!
Why do the loudest stereos belong to those with the worst taste in music?

MadFairlane

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Re: 1997 Ford F350 Diesel 5sp
« Reply #14 on: May 29, 2013, 04:13:46 AM »
These stupid things don't have any vertical adjustment and the only thing I can get a look at is my rear tire.  If I want to see where my trailer wheels are, or have any idea if there's a vehicle nearby, I need to hunch way down in the seat.  Not comfortable or safe, especially with a trailer.

I may have been spoiled by the mirrors on the busses I drove in college, but even the normal mirrors on my 79 Suburban were at least 4X the size of these mirrors.  Heck, my 4Runner has bigger mirrors!

Put a camera on the back end of the trailer, hotwire the reverse only activation so you can turn it on when you want, and just use it when travelling.

PS, if you want any advice on RV stuff hit me up, we import alot of product from the USA for our Aussie RV market so I know most of the "better" gear you can buy.

This is where I work: www.coastrv.com.au

RV shit is what I do, all day everyday
1967 Ford Fairlane - Sold
2011 Mazda BT50 - Current
2008 Toyota Aurion ZR6 - Sold
2017 Mazda CX-9 GT - Wifes

wantahertzdonut

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Re: 1997 Ford F350 Diesel 5sp
« Reply #15 on: May 29, 2013, 10:43:07 PM »
Put a camera on the back end of the trailer, hotwire the reverse only activation so you can turn it on when you want, and just use it when travelling.

PS, if you want any advice on RV stuff hit me up, we import alot of product from the USA for our Aussie RV market so I know most of the "better" gear you can buy.

This is where I work: www.coastrv.com.au

RV shit is what I do, all day everyday


I'm considering a camera for reversing or even aligning the hitch, but I'll see if I can get around to it.  My girlfriend is learning to spot for me and she's pretty good, so I can limp by in the meantime.

I'll hit you up when I have questions, I appreciate it!
Why do the loudest stereos belong to those with the worst taste in music?

wantahertzdonut

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Re: 1997 Ford F350 Diesel 5sp
« Reply #16 on: March 25, 2014, 03:56:07 PM »
So it's been forever since I updated this but I've made a few improvements.

First was finding a cap.  I wanted one to block some of the air hitting the trailer in hopes of some mileage improvement, and also to carry a few extra things since it's only a regular cab.  This one didn't have any locking hardware so I had to bungee cord it shut, but later on I found a twist lock at an RV store, and had some of the rods from another cap that I rigged up to fit.  Now I have a locking cap with a slight rise.  Still debating on painting it to match.



Second was done on the road.  I had no luck finding western mirrors that would fit, and called every truck junkyard in NE Ohio looking for an older F600, F700, or F800 in hopes of finding mirrors like those on this truck:

Actually, I'd really like to just have this whole truck.  His asking price was what I paid for mine, and it only had 49k on the clock!


Since none of the junkyards in the Cleveland area had anything older than 8 years old, I decided to put up with the dinky mirrors.  Later on I installed this mirror on my RH side, but the 2-point mount just flapped in the wind.  It was worthless.



Finally when we got to Tucson, AZ, I found a junkyard with these big towing mirrors on an old D300 they had just taken in.  After buying some hardware they were installed, and what a difference.  I can see everything clearly on the road, and backing up is a breeze.



Also had an axle seal go bad, and I didn't have the equipment with me to do the job with much confidence.  I found a shop in Austin, TX that was recommended by another RV'er and had them do the work.  I'm happy as can be.

I also got rid of the rear hubcaps.  They had a valve extension that came loose and emptied my RR inside tire of air without my knowledge, wearing the hell out of my outside tire.  I hate those damn things and think they're ugly, so they're out of there.  When I start working again, I'm going to pick up a set of the 8-hole steel E350 dually rims and stick those on.
« Last Edit: March 31, 2014, 11:59:33 PM by wantahertzdonut »
Why do the loudest stereos belong to those with the worst taste in music?

wantahertzdonut

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Re: 1997 Ford F350 Diesel 5sp
« Reply #17 on: February 22, 2017, 03:07:50 PM »
I forgot I left this off.  I did a lot of work to the truck thinking we were going to hit the road again so I fixed everything that had been bugging me, but then I had a significant improvement to my work situation and was comfortable getting into an apartment rendering the truck and trailer obsolete. 

The truck got new tires, new wheels, new shocks and steering, and some driving lights.  Then I sold it.  It was great for the time I owned it but without a purpose a truck like this is not the easiest thing to live with. 

I got wheels normally used on an E350/450 since I hated the utility truck wheels that came with mine.  I then added some ebay lugnuts and axle covers for a wannabe big truck look that I felt was way better than stock and didn't set me back much.





New strut rod bushings eliminated the wandering when I hit the brakes


Gabriel Maxforce shocks were way better than the completely blown out Bilsteins that came with the truck, and I can only assume whatever was in the back was stock.  Huge improvement in the ride but it was still stiff.


The install of the little heim joint was the hardest job since it required removal of the pedal box which was a major pain in the ass to remove.  Once out, I replaced the stock plastic bushing to eliminate clutch play and now I could actually depress the clutch cylinder all the way.  No more grinding shifts and since I replaced the pedal bushings at the same time, my neutral safety switch problem went away too.


Just some outside shots.  I wish I didn't need the bed cap since it looks way better without it.  Had I purchased a 5th wheel trailer, this cap would be long gone.




Hella 550 driving lights, these things work great but the covers that came with them disintegrated in short time.


Overall I can't say that I miss the truck but I do miss having a use for such a vehicle.  Maybe one day I'll get a new RV and need a truck to tow it but until then I'm happy it's gone.  Plus I found the right buyer and he couldn't have been happier to take it off my hands. 
« Last Edit: February 22, 2017, 03:09:19 PM by wantahertzdonut »
Why do the loudest stereos belong to those with the worst taste in music?