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Old 01-20-2008, 03:15 PM   #21 (permalink)
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(See post #36 - this turned out not to be related to modding)

Well, it seems I'm not off to a good start. On the way in to work today (highway speeds), I got a "check engine" light. Given that all of the indicators on the dash looked OK, I can only surmise either (a) tranny oil cooler overheat, or (b) air inlet restriction to engine.

Now I have to go get an OBD-II scanner so I can pull the code. I figure the cost of the scanner is on a par with what the dealer would charge me to pull the code.

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Old 01-20-2008, 03:19 PM   #22 (permalink)
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Old 01-20-2008, 05:54 PM   #23 (permalink)
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around here the auto parts stores will loan you the code scanners to check your ride for free to do the scans in their parking lots.

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Old 01-22-2008, 04:41 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Sorry I haven't answered - I think you'd get good results with either the wheel covers or the fender skirts, but your best results would be to go the Full Monty and do both: the wheels will pull a lot of turbulent air into the wheelwell with them; having the covers and the skirts together reduces the tendency for the wheel to generate a big churning mass inside your closed-off wheelwell. As a first step, I'm guessing the wheel covers are your best bet, since they're completely removable with no alterations required for mounting. Moon Equipment has clip-ons for ~$65/4 (that's my size - your mileage may vary!)

Now that you've got the mirrors pulled in - extended, the truck looks like a basset hound in a stiff breeze, I know! - do they fold back? I'm never keen on doing this, but I can actually *hear* a difference in my little truck when I do it. I just miss having that rearward view. Anyone want to suggest what I do for mounting internal sideviews?

When I say "skirts," I mean a covering over the wheelwell, that blocks the tire from view. "MetroMPG" has good examples of this on his ride, "Blackfly."

Ford does a nice job of building sturdy trucks, but do they even realize that there's an atmosphere to shove through? I look at their trucks and imagine that they might not. It would explain a lot.
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Old 01-22-2008, 04:43 PM   #25 (permalink)
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D'oh! Holy cats I hope nothing has gotten fried as a result of trying the suggestions!

<crosses fingers> Best of luck, bro.
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Old 01-22-2008, 08:18 PM   #26 (permalink)
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Elhigh, the wheel covers and/or skirts is definitely something to consider.

Yes, the mirrors fold back; unfortunately at that point I'm completely blind to vehicles on either side of me - clearly a major problem.

I suspect the designers at Ford are focused on the "work" capabilities of the truck. It does have impressive load-carrying and -pulling stats (23,000lbs GCWR).
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Old 01-22-2008, 09:22 PM   #27 (permalink)
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Of course they were. Can you imagine the flack Ford would get if it made a truck that didn't excel at truck work? Isn't that why the vehicle exists? IMHO efficiency is all about matching the machine to the task. So, solitary commuting without big loads in a diesel truck (7,000 pounds of equipment to move 200 lb payload?!?) strikes me as inefficient, even if the mpg is "good".
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Old 01-22-2008, 10:21 PM   #28 (permalink)
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Yeah. Maybe some little bullet cameras, but I worry that if the light levels are too bright, the monitors inside the cab would be washed out, and there you'd be, right back to having no view to the rear. And I'm not keen on having more junk inside the cab of my truck, so I'm not going to go recommending that to you, either.

No, there's no faulting the F-Series, or any of the fullsize trucks, at their capabilities for moving mountains of stuff. If I tried to do that with my Subaru, I could start yesterday, still be at it tomorrow, and still not be done, while you guys with the big rigs drag it all away in one shot. Now, even if you're only getting single-digit mileage, that's still more fuel-efficient than me making a dozen trips. And my Toyota PU isn't much better for the big haulage. Fortunately, that doesn't enter into the equation of my automotive formula.
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Old 01-22-2008, 10:49 PM   #29 (permalink)
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Hi buckyball - welcome to the site.

I second SVOboy's advice to get a ScanGauge. Aside from its utility as a code reader, unless your truck already has a stock fuel economy gauge, that's where it will be most useful.

I know you implied "vehicle" in asking for advice on mods in your introductory post, but driving mods are the most cost effective. Fuel economy instrumentation is the key.

The other vehicle mods people have been suggesting sound reasonable so far.

One thing I have to ask, not knowing the vehicle: while I can see your need for dual mirrors due to the vehicle's size & height, does the mirror area have to be so large? What about retrofitting smaller, aerodynamic automotive style mirrors?
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Old 01-22-2008, 10:53 PM   #30 (permalink)
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Now I have to go get an OBD-II scanner so I can pull the code. I figure the cost of the scanner is on a par with what the dealer would charge me to pull the code.
Dude, just go to Autozone, they'll be happy to do it for free. As for Grille Blocks, look for where the air intake is, and block it off there. It may seem like a bad Idea, but it's wintertime right now, and all it will do is block off the cool air from entering the intake. The intake doesn't even suck air in from the grille anyway, it usually looks like it, but it actually "curls" around at the end and sucks air either from the side, or the rear, or a combo of both. so it will just suck in warm air from the engine bay, warming the engine faster in the winter. In the summer, or while hauling, I'd remove it.

Did you try any mods before that light came on?

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