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Booshwa

7.3L Powerstroke Thread

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Posted (edited)

I was looking around and really didn't see a thread with all of the different 7.3L modes.  I know there's still a lot of people on this forum that have these trucks, as they're still affordable and can tow pretty well with a few mods on them.  I've seen decent 7.3's well under the $20K range that'll still pull the 12-15K trailers and toys people are hauling to the desert.  Not everyone can afford a $40-80K newer truck (I know, with twice the power).  There's lots of guys on here (jwest2sh, endobear, Sausage450r), with great info on the 7.3 and I was hoping other's who buy these trucks could benefit from a semi all inclusive thread.  That's the thought anyways, so I'll give it a shot.

Had a 1999 with bags, compressor, tuner, exhaust...etc that I should have never sold, but I did.  Went back to an F150 for awhile and downsized on the trailer.  Pulled fine but you get pushed all over the place.  My brother in law found a 2000 that he picked up from a guy in El Cajon.  Knowing he never keeps anything longer then a few months (he's got truck buying problems) I told him it was the cleanest 7.3 I've seen and I wanted it.  3 months  and $18K later it's mine.   Per the guy in El Cajon, at 195K miles a lift was put on it, 37" tires, intake, exhaust and a bullydog tuner, all new interior, 2007 front end and rear tailgate, he had no idea on engine or trans work from the prior owner.   I got the truck with 205K miles on it and realized it's probably never towed anything heavy, no brake controller, fuses or relays for a controller have ever been installed under the hood.

Had Matt from Matt's Caddy Shack in El Cajon (who's owned a 7.3L forever) install a Mishimoto trans cooler and fix a small oil leak near the turbo, Matt’s shop did a super clean job and even buffed out my motor!.  I know the kryptonite on these trucks is the transmission as I burned up a torque converter on my old one when pulling the 38' 5th wheel up the grade one day, they have to stay cool and you need to get the TC to lock up.  I had John Woods fix that tranny and I'll be sending this truck to him to do his valve body and tuner magic to prevent it from happening to me again.   Matt also asked me to try the latest stock tune from Ford as he thought the bully dog wasn't all that.  When I bought the truck, I pulled the bully dog off and dumped the stock tune into it to go get it smogged, what a pathetic gutless pig.  As soon as I passed the visual smog in good old CA, I put the bully dog back on to make it drivable.  So when Matt was suggesting the latest stock Ford tune, I was expecting another gutless pig experience when I picked it up from him.  Honestly the new stock tune he put in is MUCH better than the bully dog tune and I've removed the bully dog completely.   Matt explained he's a certified Ford aftermarket shop and they send him all the latest tunes.   I just dropped my truck back off to him to put the RiffRaff 3 gauge kit on it (Trans temp, EGT and boost) along with fixing the upper center console display that apparently has a common issue with loose resistors.

I also had an alarm installed a Viper 5706V from a mobile guy (Benny Owan 619-760-6994) that has a delayed remote start (glow plugs) and he put a backup camera (lic plate frame) that was compatible with an already installed deck in the dash.  There's a rash of thefts out in East County and the 7.3L is at the top of the list per my SDSO friends.   Just swapped out the side mirrors with these (not pictured) they're solid, no vibrations and work really well.  Also added the brake controller, fuses and relays and 7 prong plug. 

Future plans for this truck:  A visit to John woods to check the trans, install his valve body kit and a tuner.  I'm assuming he still does the DP tuner but I've also heard good things about the Hydra.  I will go with his recommendation as he's been doing this forever.  My last DP tuner had the decel and no start tunes as well as the tow and performance.  The decel tune was REALLY nice coming down the grade, hardly had to use the brakes with the 15K or more 5th wheel in tow.  I'll also have him put the better rear end cover to help keep things cool as well.

I want bags and onboard air, I'm still trying to figure this out.  I had the viair kit on the prior truck, adjust pressure while driving.  But the sucker sounded like a rotohammer under the truck when the compressor came on,  not sure that's avoidable.  I'm also thinking I might lower it a bit and put it on 35's vs the 37's. 

It's a loud truck, what 7.3L isn't.  I did quite it down with an oil change and removing the bullydog.  But it's still loud and has half the power of a 2015 or newer 6.7L.  But it was also $20K vs $50K and gets the job done with no death wobble. 

Hoping other's will share their trucks, pics and experience for anyone current and future owners.   Who knows....maybe one day this topic will get pinned :)

Here’s one of the best 7.3 threads on the board with tons of mods by jwest2ish

 

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Edited by Booshwa

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Posted (edited)

Beautiful truck.

the fuel/high pressure oil system runs around the heads rathers that evenly across them, this contributes to alot of "noise" the RiffRaff High Pressure Oil crossover and Fuel Rail cross over really help quiet them down. I run a 4" straight pipe on mine and an aftermarket wastegate so there is no quiet about my truck. I have the 1A Auto mirrors too, you'll love them. Mine are a few years old, still just as good as the day I installed them.

 

https://www.glamisdunes.com/invision/index.php?/forums/topic/324088-2001-f350-1a-auto-08-upgrade-mirrors-just-added-1a-auto-update-headilght-kit/&tab=comments#comment-4836446

Here is some turbo build info

I too want to lower mine a little and go down to 35's Im running stock 2004 f250 front springs and 4" drop brackets right now and nothing in the back and she still sits tall.

she’s a dirty girl in this pic

8C27D385-EE28-4D4D-8D70-23BB4B38D3BD.jpeg

Edited by sausage450r

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Sausage, did the smog police say anything about the cross over kits?  Did the kits make a noticeable difference in noise reduction?  They may be next on my list.  My truck is most noisy on slow speed hill climbing, not bad on flats or at speed on the roads and highways.

2 minutes ago, sausage450r said:

Beautiful truck.

the fuel/high pressure oil system runs around the heads rathers that evenly across them, this contributes to alot of "noise" the RiffRaff High Pressure Oil crossover and Fuel Rail cross over really help quiet them down. I run a 4" straight pipe on mine and an aftermarket wastegate so there is no quiet about my truck. I have the 1A Auto mirrors too, you'll love them. Mine are a few years old, still just as good as the day I installed them.

I too want to lower mine a little and go down to 35's Im running stock 2004 f250 front springs and 4" drop brackets right now and nothing in the back and she still sits tall.

 

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7 minutes ago, Booshwa said:

Sausage, did the smog police say anything about the cross over kits?  Did the kits make a noticeable difference in noise reduction?  They may be next on my list.  My truck is most noisy on slow speed hill climbing, not bad on flats or at speed on the roads and highways.

 

They did quiet it down (motor) not as clacky as my neighbors’.

the oil crossovers are very discreet, the frx not as much, but would probably only be noticed by a 7.3 freak. They arent really performance items, so i dont see why they would be illegal for smog.

i live in pine valley, no smog :yay: 

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I've owned a 97 OBS and a 2000 Super Duty. I thought they were the best trucks ever until I got my 2011 6.7

It had 187k on it when I bought it and paid 18k. Was completely stock until I added wheels/tires and lift. I'm in it 21k and too be honest, you couldn't give me another 7.3 after owning the 6.7

If this goes against the topic I will delete my post if you want me to. I just think that you can get a good used 6.7 for less than you think if you look hard enough. 

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12 minutes ago, hondajimz said:

I've owned a 97 OBS and a 2000 Super Duty. I thought they were the best trucks ever until I got my 2011 6.7

It had 187k on it when I bought it and paid 18k. Was completely stock until I added wheels/tires and lift. I'm in it 21k and too be honest, you couldn't give me another 7.3 after owning the 6.7

If this goes against the topic I will delete my post if you want me to. I just think that you can get a good used 6.7 for less than you think if you look hard enough. 

The more info the better.  I was looking at the 2015-2016 trucks, heard earlier 6.7’s weren’t as good or reliable.  And to be honest I was looking at Lariets and Platinums😆.  Everyone says the 6.7 is the new million mile motor.  

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I have heard 2011's were supposed to have issues but so far mine has been great. I'm right around 210k and going strong. Hope I didn't jinx myself. Good luck with your new truck. She's a beauty.

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8 hours ago, hondajimz said:

I've owned a 97 OBS and a 2000 Super Duty. I thought they were the best trucks ever until I got my 2011 6.7

It had 187k on it when I bought it and paid 18k. Was completely stock until I added wheels/tires and lift. I'm in it 21k and too be honest, you couldn't give me another 7.3 after owning the 6.7

If this goes against the topic I will delete my post if you want me to. I just think that you can get a good used 6.7 for less than you think if you look hard enough. 

For me its parts. 7.3s are cheap to maintain.  The mech that did the injectors on my 6.0 said 6.7 is about 3x as much

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I've owned my 2002 F-250 since 2004.  I bought it from a friend with 50k on the odometer, and it now has almost 225k.  It has been a good truck, and I have towed for most of the miles that this truck has accumulated.  At 70k, I did a lift kit, Banks impeller and wastegate, MBRP 4" turbo back exhaust, AFE Stage 2 intake and Quadzilla tuner.  At 80K the dreaded trans failure happened.  It went to John Wood, and did one of his trans then (I think it was 2005) with his internal upgrades and everything.  I opted for a new thing he was doing - which was a 6.0 converter.  At that time, there wasn't a billet converter available for the conversion, and he had good luck with the stock 6.0 converters.  In 2014, I lost the converter (complete disengagement).  Back to John Wood it went for a freshen, and a billet converter.  At that time, he talked me into his tuner, so he could control the trans as well.

I have towed a large 5er for an uncountable amount of miles. I put air bags with on board compressor, and a Superglide 5er hitch.  I haven't done any upgrades to speak of on the exterior.  The interior has a banging stereo, and a remote start alarm with window modules (those add full auto up and down when you push the drivers switches for every window - LOVE THIS ADDITION!)

This picture was April 2019, our last trip of the season.  This was also the last trip towing a 5er with it, as we have gone to a Pusher now.  The truck has done well, and I don't have any plans on getting rid of it!

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Still running my 02 f250SD

Exhaust, programmer, trans mods, rear bags, banks upgrades and since it it 2wd, air locker for those situations

And the best thing of all, Train Horn!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!post-5922-1280366521_thumb.jpg

I also still have my first boat, 1982 Eliminator 20.5 Sport.  

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2 hours ago, sausage450r said:

For me its parts. 7.3s are cheap to maintain.  The mech that did the injectors on my 6.0 said 6.7 is about 3x as much

I love my 7.3 lasted 330 thousand miles before I passed it on to another owner,. the only reason I sold it is because I could no longer get parts, as I was having electrical harnesses fail left and right from old oil leaks, and had to have custom harnesses made by a hot rod shop in Oregon at ten times the price because Ford no longer had them. I could not find them in a junkyard in the entire United States after weeks of searching I removed the old harness and sent it off to be duplicated plug by plug. I sold the truck with zero of the automatic door locks  functioning, no turn signals, and a whole list of other problems that I could not resolve. Replaced that problem with a 08 f350, and it's been a nightmare to keep running and out of the shop, both the  motor and trans have been replaced and I have only 160 k miles so far, and it's in the shop now 7 days later, for broken exhaust manifold studs (again), and a leaky egr that keeps pressurising the coolant system. the cab comes off at least once or twice a year on this truck, it's the only way to work on the engine! such a horrible design, wish I would have got an 11 or newer 6.7. 

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My friend bought a used 2012 for like 25 with a little over 100k....he is amazed by that truck every day.  He doubled my mileage with a better ride, quieter,  time for me to upgrade.

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10 minutes ago, 2turbofords said:

I love my 7.3 lasted 330 thousand miles before I passed it on to another owner,. the only reason I sold it is because I could no longer get parts, as I was having electrical harnesses fail left and right from old oil leaks, and had to have custom harnesses made by a hot rod shop in Oregon at ten times the price because Ford no longer had them. I could not find them in a junkyard in the entire United States after weeks of searching I removed the old harness and sent it off to be duplicated plug by plug. I sold the truck with zero of the automatic door locks  functioning, no turn signals, and a whole list of other problems that I could not resolve. Replaced that problem with a 08 f350, and it's been a nightmare to keep running and out of the shop, both the  motor and trans have been replaced and I have only 160 k miles so far, and it's in the shop now 7 days later, for broken exhaust manifold studs (again), and a leaky egr that keeps pressurising the coolant system. the cab comes off at least once or twice a year on this truck, it's the only way to work on the engine! such a horrible design, wish I would have got an 11 or newer 6.7. 

Sorry. My brother had an 08 also, at 35k miles he had dpf system failure that filled crank case with fuel, then at 40k miles front of engine had to be remanufactured from cavitation. He sold it cheap and moved on.

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@Booshwa

how about a little more info on the alarm? I need to replace mine, not sure who to trust to do it in the el cajon area. What alarm did you go with?

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X2 on the alarm. I have one now but would like the remote start and the window modules.

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Call Jason from Auto Toys.  He is from the SD area originally.  He now lives in Perris but travels mobile to SD frequently.  Great guy!!

619-300-8265.  He has done stuff for me quite a bit!

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I run the Air Lift bags and their small compressor behind my seat. You can add an air tank to it if you want to run train horns. I didn't.  I also ran a shrader valve to my license plate just in case the pump ever quits. No issues for the last 8 years. They do have an different airbag mount/setup if you are running a 5th wheel hitch. Never let your bags go below 5psi. That's when they will start cracking and leaking over time and be sure you put some sort of heat shield on the bag if its close to your exhaust.

Tranny temp gauge has been a nice addition since I cooked my 1st tranny at 88k.  There is a blank sensor port on I believe the drivers side of the tranny to hook up to. Be sure to get the lower sweep gauge.

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Not sure what this trans issue everyone mentioned is all about and when you have this you dont need an alarm :lol:

 

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The old palm shaker

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, sausage450r said:

@Booshwa

how about a little more info on the alarm? I need to replace mine, not sure who to trust to do it in the el cajon area. What alarm did you go with?

Found a guy on FB Market with good reviews.  I had the Viper 5706V installed, not the bottom of the line  (but also not the most expensive) I didn't want to have range issues while trying to remote start while in the house.  The remote start is supposed to be good for up to 1 mile on this one, with two way communication to let you know the truck got the signal.   I had the guy come to my work to install it, I took out all my registration info so he didn't have my home address and had him install the alarm and the backup camera.  He did clean work and charge $430 for the alarm and install.  It was super convenient not having to take it into a shop.  His contact info is Benny Owan 619-760-6994. 

Edited by Booshwa

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Went by Gear Vendors in El Cajon, interesting how that unit works.  Having 8 gears vs 4 and thinking about all those times my '99 couldn't hold 3rd going up the grade...dropping it into 2nd and watching the RPM's peg....having that 2.5 gear would be pretty sweet!  Their pricing was $3,395 for the unit, $1,000 for them to install.  Total OTD with tax $4,677. 

Also after 1 email and 2 phone messages, I got a call from John Woods.  He's out of tuners and getting ready to leave on vacation but said he'd print out my email and put it on his board and call me on his return.  I'll have him do a tuner, his valve body work and take a look at the torque converter while he's in there.  Service the diff's and put on a fined diff cover for heat in the rear.   The most important part of his tow tune is locking up that TC so it's not spinning and heating everything up.  One interesting point is that he's not doing the DP Tuners any longer, he switched to Hydra.  He told me he couldn't get Jody to fix his tunes so he started doing his own tunes with the Hydra platform.

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Ugh! You’re reminding me i need to order a valve body from john. I am running the excursion diff covers on mine.

my superduty

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Easier side view on my wifes’ excursion damn that 50 gallon tank :scared: 

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Posted (edited)

Matt (Matt’s Caddy Shack) installed the Riffraff gauge package.  There were a couple connections he replaced with brass vs their plastic connectors in the kit.  He also replaced the worn out sway bar links with some beefy units.  Running to El Centro tomorrow to pick up a couple UTV’s, curious to see what this truck does with a little weight behind it climbing the grade.

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Edited by Booshwa

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Ive got the DP Infinity Tuner. Couple tears ago we were loaded up, ready to pull out for a week in Moab. Kids, dogs, wife and trailer loaded up and ready to roll. Switched the tune to tow mode and she wouldn't start. Not in any tune. Called Jody 10 minutes before closing and after a couple hrs of trouble shooting he ended up emailing me the stock tune and she ran. I think it is a hardware issue. Still need to follow-up  with him.

Great customer service. Saved my trip.

Clay at Riff Raff is awesome also.

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On 3/2/2020 at 9:24 PM, sausage450r said:

i live in pine valley, no smog :yay: 

I did not know that was a thing.   More things to look forward to moving east.  :yay: 

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