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2008 Ford F350 4x4 Power Stroke Harley-Davidson Edition Ultimate Build-up

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Originally Posted on July 23 2015 

What's up Tech and Travel forum people of 4WD Mechanix Magazine?

    Hopefully you guys are ready to follow along on a build I have going this summer/fall. Okay here is the skinny. I have a customer that drives a 2008 Ford F-350 Harley Davidson Edition with the 6.4 Power Stroke and automatic transmission with 100k+ miles. Beautiful truck I might add both inside and out.

   Over the past couple of years we have done a few things to match his needs. Air intake, exhaust system, hand held programmer, intercooler and boots, EGR and DPF delete. Plus a list of cosmetic things like Amp Research running boards, roll out bed cover etc. With the exception of the intercooler and deletes, its what the average person would do to any vehicle. Bolton's if you will.

   All of the previous things done had added small amounts of performance and made the truck more personal to the owner. Now, I know the deletes will always be a touchy subject due to the EPA, but from an owners standpoint, well these factory systems lack in function and durability. After he had already had the factory replace the system once due to failure, and then they failed again, he wanted them removed. Cant blame him because they can cause damage to your engine when they fail and since the factory warrant was up, well you would probably do the same thing to ha-ha. Trust me, proper tuning and parts with proper driving and responsibility will make this truck as environmentally friendly as any other older diesel on the road but that's another topic for another post.. Moving on..

   The build: Given the price of a brand new 2015/2016 floor model of the same options, he has decided that the same money spent on his current truck would make it better than new and it would be customized to his liking (plus a bit cheaper in the end given all he would end up doing to the new truck). Customer wants more power (don't we all) but he plans on towing a few heavy loads through out the year. Dependability is a no brainer and I wouldn't build anything for anyone that didn't put that high on the list. Not making them put the right hard parts in is a good way for people to spread your name around as a bad builder when things do break. Even though its not your call, don't give in on a build for someone else. If its not something you would put on your own truck don't let them use it on theirs. No one ever blames the cheap parts, they blame the builder.

  As always I will start out with my usual "Warning". I'm not a certified mechanic by Ford or any other vehicle manufacturer. This is not a step by step "How to" but I will highlight things that I think may be a trouble saving tip for anyone else doing the same thing. Like 99% of the people on this forum, I am a lover of all vehicles and an extreme DIY guy. My methods or procedures are just what I have experience with. As always consult with your local dealership or mechanic before starting any of the work you are about to see. **No animals were harmed in the making of this post and this post is not known to cause cancer in California members**

 Now this build is going to take a while due to customer supplied parts, time for outsourcing certain things like head and block machine work etc.. I don't post here everyday but I will follow it through until the end. Just check back and I will update when time allows. Also, if this creates any questions feel free to ask and I will answer when I get the chance or maybe someone else may chime in. And as always keep the negative stuff to a minimum. We are all hear to learn from each other and the choices and taste of one person shouldn't be criticized by another. I'm sure many of you will have questions about the durability and usefulness of certain parts. I will answer what I can when time allows.

   On with the show... First up is a stop at the local shop to evacuate the AC system properly. This is something I do not have the ability to do at my shop yet but it must be done in order to remove the cab. They generally don't charge much and its way safer for the environment (see told you I didn't hurt any animals doing this). Truck was already leaking fluids pretty bad so we did this by way of the flatbed in order to save any parts that may be used as a core from damage.


 Next up is hood and cab removal. Pretty much Ford and Chevrolet require cab removals for any real invasive engine work (Dodge/Ram is hanging on by a thread but some people will do it anyway and I don't blame them). Plus it really makes it easy to work on them so its strongly suggested. This process is what will separate the average guy from doing most things of this caliber. That being said I'm sure you could pull a motor and transmission from these trucks with the standard engine hoist/lift, but I assure you that's the harder way. Lucky for my I have a two post lift so for me this is the way to go.


  Cab removal is really not as bad as it seems. First up (with any work on a vehicle) is battery removal. NOTE: These newer Ford vehicles do not like to have their batteries removed. It can put the ECU/PCM into an anti theft mode that will not allow you to restart it. There is a procedure you can follow to reverse the effects or the dealer will do it for you, at a cost of course. I learned this on this truck last time I worked on it lol Dealer 1/ Me 0 ha-ha. Battery removal is easy and any one can handle it. Remember, the battery is free to disconnect but replacing burnt electronics and fire damage to other parts isn't free... Food for thought.


 Next (and in no particular order) is drain the radiator, air intake, coolant lines and reservoirs, battery trays, various wiring harnesses, passenger side headlight (yes, the factory put the horn wiring through a tight spot so out with the headlight), power steering lines, steering shaft, brake hydra boost assembly, ac lines between pump and truck and pump and core support, various ground straps and starter leads, parking brake cable, shifter linkage, transmission lines at the core support and more plugs and wires. ***NOTE you will NOT need to cut anything anywhere**** These trucks are designed for this procedure and if you take your time no plugs or wires will be damaged. You will learn to master the Ford wiring harness plug before this is over.. Patience.. It should take you the better part of the day to learn you way around and get every stubborn clamp and hose fitting off. I'm sure the pros have this down to a few hours, me I just keep it steady and don't break anything, nothing like buying parts for someone else's truck when you break them lol.

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 I cannot put enough emphasis on organization of removed parts, bolts etc.. Label each end of every connection and use some zip lock bags and a sharpie to help remember. Write on the bag and if it has one bolt in it so be it, you know exactly where it goes. Trust me, when a project of this size stretches out for a bit, even the sharpest mind can forget the little stuff. Take plenty of pictures during each phase to help you. After 4 or 5 cab lifts then you probably will have every nut and pig tail memorized, but not on your first one.


 Got all those wires, coolant hoses and linkages off yet?? Lift the cab and you will find out real quick what you missed lol. Next part is cab bolts. Now I'm not sure what year ford switched the design but during the 6.0 cab removal days the bolts went down through the cab into the mounts. This required you to all but remove the interior to get to the bolts. Well on the 6.4 the bolts go up so no need to get into the truck for anything. However this was my first run in with Murphy and his laws on this build.. Apparently thread locker is cheap for Ford, and they get the good stuff.. There are 8 cab bolts in this four door truck. 2 under the core support and 6 under the drivers compartment. The 2 under the core were so hard to break loose that they actually spun the nuts in the frame core support out of the welded enclosures. Sooo.. This required me to remove the radiator and additional hardware out of the way to gain access to the spinning nuts so I could remove the bolts. Ford 1/ Me 0.. After this set back on the first 2 bolts I adopted a recently studied method of applying some extreme heat to the bolt head in order to loosen the thread locker. This had mixed results on the remaining 6 cab bolts. 5 of them responded with success but one did not. Luckily it was under the drivers floor board so a simple flip up of the carpet and a plug removal got me on track with removing that one.

 Back on track.. At this point you have to evaluate each component and decide that when you lift the cab if it stays with the frame and engine or if it lifts off with the cab. Some bungee cords are very helpful in securing hoses and lines in the correct direction for removal. Just take the time to trace out each line and wire and decide if it stays or goes. For this truck there was only one ground wire under the passenger side floorboard that went from the frame to the cab (other than the ones on the engine and on the ecu). The parking brake is tricky but use a set of vise grips to hold the line out and give your self some slack to work the coupler. Transmission linkage is a bit tricky and be careful not to break it. Once the clip is loose it will pop of the arm sticking out of the transmission.


  Next is securing the cab to the lift so when you go up your lift arms don't get caught on the frame rails or any parts on the frame. Once you are happy and everything seems safe give it a lift. Go an inch or two and check lines and clearance. Like me you will find something you forgot ha-ha. Mine was the two power steering lines at the hydro boost on the fire wall. I miss judged what stayed and went. But no harm no foul grabbed a couple open ended wrenches and got it loose. Now I didn't show or tell you about every connection, but this is not a "how to" mainly I diary of my build. I will post some great videos from YouTube that cover it down to the plug and socket made by Ford techs. Give those videos a like and subscribe. Those guys are good at what they do.

  Once the cab is up and clear of the chassis you can now see the awesome power that is the Ford 6.4 Powerstroke.. That and a blown turbo seal with about 2 gallons of oil streaming down the back of the engine and across the transmission hahaha.


  Up until this point I have mixed feeling on this truck and its design. The chassis and cab seem great but the engineering and meshing of engine systems seems cart before the horse to me. Its like each department just stacked something on something, this component is running through this one and over this one.. Its like there was no meetings between departments before design. This engine still wears the International logo, but I think that stopped at the valve covers.. I do like the fact that this system is a common rail and does not require the high pressure oil pumps to operate the injectors (glad you made it into the 21st century), but man does it seem over engineered to achieve what function it does have. Sorry to seem down on Ford because I'm not. This truck is a brute and it makes power, its just crazy looking at all these tubes, hoses, coolers for this and that, sensors and components, turbos attached to turbos etc... Compared to my old 5.9, well this thing seems like it was built by NASA ha-ha.. O well the build must go on and im sure in the end it will be even better.



  All righty then.. Where to begin.. In no particular order to the build I will give a quick rundown of the parts we have waiting to be bolted up to this 2008 Ford Power Stroke F-350 Harley Davidson Edition pickup truck. Now, when you read this understand these parts were not purchased over night. I have been working with him over the past couple years on what would should do and which way he should go with his build. Some of these parts have been waiting a while to be installed. The anticipation is killing me, but we decided to amass everything we could get on the list prior to starting. The last few things to get required removal of the engine so that's leads us to the current date and time.

  First on the list: Elite Diesel Engineering Z-Max Fully Ported Intake for the Power Stroke 6.4 Diesel. As you can tell by the pictures its starts life as a stock intake manifold and then it is completely redone for max airflow. We all know it takes more air to make more power. Quality is top notch and it included all hardware for instillation.

  If you notice the new design eliminates the pass through bolts going through the airway of the manifold. They have cut out and replaced the factory restricted areas in the runners as well. Should be a nice addition to the performance sides. Only notable downfall is with this design special attention will need to be given to location and mounting of brackets that once shared the factory style hardware holding the original intake down. Not a big deal but something to watch out for when choosing this option. They do offer a more factory friendly setup for those looking to retain some of the original design but get better flow.

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  Currently I can give no answer to performance gains. Once the truck is running we will post MPG's and EGT's and any findings we have on this part. To be honest its a intake manifold and given the extent of this build it will be hard to single this part out for any gains or loses. Judging by its construction I believe it will be part of the gains though ha-ha.


  Going forward I will add a new comment for each part. Little easier and safer should I have to step away from the desk..

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  Next up was a set of Elite Diesel Engineering Power Stroke 6.4  Stage 2 Ported Fuel Rails. To be honest the name says it all. They are a set of replacement fuel rails that have been ported to accommodate better fuel flow from the high pressure pumps (that's right I said pumps, as in this truck is getting dual HPFP, keeping reading and we will get to those haha).


 As for the rails, they have 25% more capacity in the rail log itself giving you a bit more fuel on demand during a injection event. Plus the inlet and outlet ports have been maximized for flow. While this may seem miniscule in stock configuration, it can make the difference on a performance standpoint in the upper RPM's when you have 4 injectors on that rail needing large amounts of fuel.


 Now before you go all stage 2 on the order form remember you really don't need that unless you are going to run a dual high pressure fuel pump (HPFP) setup and need the additional fuel demand. Stage one is designed to optimize the use of a single HPFP in this situation. But like I said already, talk to the guys at Elite Diesel Engineering. These guys are good at what they do and they will get you squared away with your build


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Sadly they look stock lol. Nothing cool to see like custom colors or machine work. In the picture I put the rail pressure sensor back on for clarity. As for performance gains, you will have to wait for the end results like the rest of us haha..

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Who's ready for some more parts?? I know I am..


  Okay.. lets see what we have.. Well skipping onto some exhaust components.. Up on deck is a set of BD performance 6.0 exhaust manifolds.. no you didn't read that wrong I said 6.0 not 6.4.. So now your asking" What's up man?? You said we were building a 6.4, not that old 6.0 that wants to blow out head gaskets" I know, I know relax.. Not everything was bad on the 6.0 and not everything was right on the 6.4. Case in point are the exhaust manifolds.


  The factory 6.4 exhaust manifold is deferent from the 6.0 right at the turn up towards the turbo. I can only assume to save some money on the 6.4 setup they utilized the cheaper tubing to make the bend that goes up to meet the turbo. This bend sees a lot of heat and that thin wall piping wont cut the mustard for ever. So sticking with the 6.0 style manifolds this elbow is cast into the manifold itself. But since we don't like stock we went with the BD setup. their product is better than factory and designed to work better. So that's 2 improvements in one part, 6.0 style with BD improved quality and flow... Winning..


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 Okay, along with the BD Performance 6.0 manifolds you will need some special up pipes to attach to the factory turbo setup. Now like some other parts these were purchased to accommodate the deletion of the factory EGR system. I will get into the new design later and these may or may not need to be used. They are in the kit, but when we get to the issues with "Drive Pressure" later, I may have to make modifications to these in order for them to work properly for this build. That's another story for later.


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  In the mean time these things are nothing but pure perfection. The BD Performance 6.4 Liter up pipe kit for use with 6.0 manifolds is great. All the necessary hardware is included and nothing bad to report. It comes complete with instructions and would be a great addition to any 6.4 build. I have always had success with BD Performance and great customer service.



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So who is tired of the little parts and want to see some of the cool parts?? I know I do..


 I say we give a little preview of the new Suncoast Ford 5R110 6.4L 08-10 Competition Transmission.. Ya baby this thing is a brute. Before we get to far in let me elaborate on the term "Competition". In this case we will not be competing but we still wanted a full billet upgraded transmission. Billet meaning billet steel input, intermediate shaft plus many more hard parts inside.  After talking with the people at Suncoast, they got us hooked up with this transmission (and associated parts) for use on our build. If there is one thing I have learned in the diesel game, its that the transmissions take a beating. Don't skimp out on any transmission build. In the end you will pay for it. The guys at Suncoast know their stuff, give them a call and they will get you going in the right direction under full power..


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  Now that's what I'm talking about.. They had this to us in one week. That's getting it done.. It includes the Mag-Hytec Deep Sump Fluid Pan. It is a big upgrade over stock. It holds extra fluid for cooling and longer life, its construction adds strength to the transmission itself and it adds cooling per its finned design.


  Now I know someone is thinking "What good is all the strength if you cant get the power from the engine to the transmission??" I'm with you sister and that's why we had Suncoast throw in one of their Ford 5R110 Billet Flex Plates and a Ford 5R110 Billet Torque Converter... Boom.. Mind blown right??


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  I would like to add that Suncoast designs, fabricates and assembles their own transmissions. The machine work on the flex plate is proof enough that quality comes first. This is one of the reasons we went direct to them. I support people that do it all in house. That's is not an easy thing to do.

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Had enough new parts for today?? Me neither ha-ha..


  I sa we take a look at the Elite Diesel Engineering Twin K16 High Pressure Fuel Pump system. You read that right, twin HPFP's.. So everyone knows it takes more fuel and air to make power. Well this is the best way to get that fuel you need for big power numbers. The guys at EDE hooked us up with their complete kit plus a new second pump. Everything is included and all of the homework has been done. This kit has the ability to supply enough fuel for 200hp injectors which is enough to get you 200hp north of 1000 (that's 1200hp for you that cant keep up).  


  Not to mention the kit looks awesome.. Now the factory HPFP is tucked into the back of the engine, under a cover that's under a turbo. It is driven off of the cam gear that is driven off of the crank gear. This kit mounts to the front of the engine and is driven by a separate belt and pulley system. It can and will work with all factory parts.


 By now you are asking what's the deal with all the Elite Diesel Engineering parts?? Well not many people build 6.4 stuff for improved performance. So for now we are sticking with these guys because we think they have it going on.. 


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  Would you look at that machine work.. Its a shame you wont get to see most of it once its installed..


 To be clear, I will cover all the parts better upon install, I just wanted to hook you guys on what's coming up.

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So who wants to know how we plan to stop this thing wants it gets rolling?? Well we have that covered as well.


 This is the SSBC 6 Piston V6 Quick Change Aluminum Caliper Upgrade Kit with Big Bite Cross Drilled & Slotted rotors all the way around.. Ya that should make her stop..


  We had already installed the rotors prior to resolving an issue with the calipers. Just like everyone else, not everything has gone smooth on this build. When we first did some brake work on the truck we ordered this set. The first set of calipers were improperly threaded. Well we had no choice at the time but to keep the factory ones and have these replaced. All went well with SSBC but we have yet to install them. The rotors have had a few miles and I will add some pictures of those later, for now all I have are pictures of the calipers. Face it, they are the neat parts to look at anyways lol.


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 Now some may say this is overkill but I don't. These diesel trucks weigh a lot. And any improvement in the brake category cant hurt. I will give you a final update on their ability to work later, after we are trying to stop this old truck before we get a speeding ticket lol

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 Okay last part preview of the day.. Don't want to get fired playing on Moses forums lol


  Lets take a look at some commonly overlooked parts that can be improved upon. This is a set of Mishimoto 6.4L coolant hoses. These replace the old factory ones and are made out of sheer awesomeness..


 At first I was like "they are just hoses, what's the big deal??" But customer was like do it so I did it. Well I am impressed. These things are top notch and I would put a set on my truck in a heartbeat. I cant say enough about quality. If you are ever in the market for new hoses you have to give these guys a try. Plus they will look sweet with that new Mishimoto Radiator going in this truck.. ya I will post it later lol


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  For those of you new to Ford cooling hoses you may be wondering about the billet ends on these hoses. This is a factory styled O-ring fitting that is common among modern coolant systems. While the factory ones are plastic, they still follow the same design. From my experience they work great and come apart pretty easy. This should be the new standard for coolant line fittings but not sure if all manufactures plan to follow along. I like it.. 

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Okay maybe one more tonight before I leave the shop..


  Fuel delivery.. again... Since I already showed you the dual K16 pumps I might as well show you how I plan to get them the fuel they need. For this build we went with the AirDog II 165 Air Fuel Water Separator setup. I have used these before and love them. There is always a battle over who makes the best lift pump. I cant say if AirDog is the best, but it has never failed me so that's a win.


  The factory 6.4l truck is equipped with their own version of a pump on the frame rail. Not many people even know its there but it is. This will replace that with a bigger flowing unit capable of meeting the current projected horsepower numbers we are after. 


  AirDog kits come complete with everything needed to make them work in your stock configuration. Well we are adding a few things and changing a few others so we wont use 100% of what is included. They come with instructions, hardware and a warranty card. File the warranty because its is a part that can wear out. I did have a pump start to loose pressure once and without question they shipped me a new one free of charge. They didn't even wait for the other one to stop working, now that's customer service haha.


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 All the bells and whistles in that kit.. Yeah baby.. Air separation, water separation, dirty fuel cleanup and plenty of flow.. That's what AirDog is all about.. Now for those who are asking what's the big deal about air in my fuel?? Great question and I had the same one.. This side of chemistry and physics, air in the fuel is a no go when dealing with the high pressure fuel systems of the modern diesel. Same goes for water and dirt. These can all cause damage to the injector nozzles and should be kept in check. AirDog's web page has plenty to read about on this topic to help better understand it. Soo instead of me repeating their research you should go check it out first hand..


 Did any one ask how we plan to get the fuel out of the tank to supply all these fuel pumps?? Well surely someone did so lets give a look in on that shall we??


 For your viewing pleasure is the Riffraff Diesel Performance High-Volume Fuel Pickup "HFP" for the 6.4L Power Stoke Diesel.. Now that truly will be missed under the bed where you cant see it.. 


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  I feel like this thing should be mounted in the grill so everyone can see it.. Its got a fuel supply port, fuel return port and a factory matched sending unit for fuel level. Simple is always the best. Not to mention they are all A/N fittings and we all know they work great.


  This piece was a no brainer when it came to getting fuel out of the new Titan Fuel Tank we are installing.. Well I guess I gave that away early lol, keep following for those pictures. The idea of cutting a hole in the bottom of a fuel cell or factory tank to put in a sump didn't deem wise for a daily driven truck build. Not that its not possible with all the kits currently on the market, just wasn't the way we went for this build.

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Well its not 5 o'clock yet (not here anyways) and Facebook is kind of boring today so I will show you a couple other parts we have up our sleeve.


 Well if you know anything about any engine you know that keeping them cool is priority one. Well with no help from Ford on this, your 6.4L will already be running hot enough. They have one of the biggest radiators, fuel cooler systems with their own coolant and pumps, coolers for everything... Well the oil needs all the help it can get. Now the factory has an oil cooler, on top of the motor.. right between the heads.. right beside to big ole fire breathing turbos.. You know, why not put it there..


  Well the boys at River City Diesel decided to fabricate an all aluminum oil pan for the 6.4. I am impressed. This thing is spot on and has quality to match. The welds are beautiful and the bends are precise. None of that third world eBay stuff here.. Its a 100% factory match bolt on piece (assuming you have the engine out haha).


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  This thing will help cool that oil off way better than the factory stamped pan could ever dream of. Plus its exposure to fresh air passing under the truck will only help more. I wish they made one for the 5.9 because I would pull my motor to put this thing on lol..


  Well now that the oil is staying cool I say we try to keep it in the engine and not in the intake. Ever pull the up pipe lose and look inside it?? ya its got a lot of oil in it coming from various places. One of the big contributors is the factory CCV (Crank Case Ventilation) system on the passenger side valve cover. Its almost like the factory forgot what the CCV was supposed to do outside of ventilation. Get a little blow by and next thing you know your burning oil, but hey 6.4's are know for "Making Oil" but we will cover that later lol


 Soooo to remedy the factory fault we picked up yet another piece from the boys over at Elite Diesel Engineering. Its the CCV + Crankcase EVAC system. Ya Beautiful piece of machine work and its a complete kit with everything needed to install it. Wanna see it?? well I wanna show you..


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 You like that don't you?? Well I do and that's all that matters lol.


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 And that's a wrap on those pictures. Complete kit with everything..

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 O snap, speaking of fuel, well two comments ago, I forgot to show you our fuel pressure regulator and the factory fuel filter delete kit. Want to guess who made it?? If you guessed Elite Diesel Engineering you would be correct lol.  


  With a low pressure high pressure fuel setup you don't want to over pressure the high pressure pumps with fuel from the low pressure pump.. you still with me haha.. To much supply fuel from the lift pump can damage a high pressure fuel pump. How that is, is still unclear to me but that's what "They" say. Once I figure out the skinny on that I will post it, in the mean time we will just properly regulate our supply fuel per the recommended amounts via this kit from EDE. This kit also allows the removal of the factory filter since our new AirDog II 165 will be taking care of that dirty work for us.


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  As always their machine work is top notch and the kit is complete. Cant wait to get it installed.. Okay I'm out for the day. I will get back on this later..

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This is absolutely phenomenal, Megatron! Ford Powerstroke 6.4 V-8 diesel fans, pay close attention here. Fantastic photos, thanks for the detail as usual, nobody does homework better! I'm anxious to see the performance gains and mileage!

Yes, removing the cab is easier, better for access and the orthodox approach on late Ford and GM trucks—for any work that would otherwise be "over-the-fenders"! Great job to this point, know you'll make this truck perform...

The parts involved are top drawer and really exciting. There's an enormous aftermarket for diesel technology and upgrades! Your details on choices and "why" are very helpful to other owners...



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 Not much time today so I will post up a couple of the parts that showed up yesterday.


  First up is the BD Performance 2008-2010 Ford 6.4L Tap Shifter. This is a pretty neat little item that is sure to make driving a bit more enjoyable. The name implies the function.  


  For those of you sporting the automatic transmission behind your diesel truck (which I believe is everyone at the Ford and Chevy camp now, and 80% of the Dodge guys) you know that shifting up and down via the ECU is lacking in the sport department. Plus its not very easy at all to downshift like a manual transmission. Why? Well its not a Ferrari for one thing. Ever try to change gears in an automatic with the shifter on the column?? Ya that's a sure fire way to slam it in reverse at 60mph haha..


 So with this little setup you now have the option, at the touch of a button, to switch them gears like a boss.. Trying to show off for some girl in a convertible?? No problem, drop a gear and get on with it.. Trying to slow down fast and avoid that speed trap at the next overpass?? no problem, tap your way to lower speeds while turning those brake rotors red hot.. Is your truck trying to tell you what gear you are supposed to be in while cruising down the highway?? not anymore.. Show that truck who's in charge. tap up your way to the gear you want. Tap up, tap down it doesn't matter, just know that you now have the control at your finger tip.


 Ever try to pass a car on the highway?? Well the days of holding the throttle to the floor and trying to demand a downshift are over. Not going to lie, wish they had this for my 06 Cummins. Nothing worse than trying to drop a gear to get your pass on with a 48RE.. O well maybe next year..


  As for the kit its all here. Now I currently cant report on the struggle to put it in, but I will report back when that day arrives. Like most things, I'm sure it can be done with a little patience.


Okay, okay, pictures I'm on it..


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 Not to shabby of a little unit. If its like anything else BD Performance makes it should be good to go..


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What say ye about some injectors for this old Power Stroke?? Well how about some Industrial Injection Injectors for the old 6.4L?? I knew you would approve..


  Well with all this truck has going on, you had to know we were going to up the injector size. We did, but I'm not going to let you in on the size until we get some dyno results later in the year and dial in what ones work best.


  Now for those of you that aren't ultra familiar with diesel injectors, under stand there are a few different types across the multiple makes of vehicles (pretty much only one type per engine generation, but different in size and build). Unlike gassers, you cant swap injectors from one type of engine to the next. These particular ones are designed for the common rail variation of the 6.4L Ford Power Stroke engine family. Thus they are different than years past like the 7.3 and 6.0, and different yet from the newest 6.7. 


 Trying to keep this part simple I will just relay that the older 6.0 versions use a high pressure oil pump to activate the injectors ability to increase the fuel pressure for the injection event. With this function you have relatively low fuel pressure to the injectors from the tank, then the pressure of the fuel was raised via the mechanical operation of the injector (in a nut shell its like hydraulics, lot of fuel crammed into a smaller place, then released out the end of the injector). My understanding is this (the oil operated part) is an old concept that was still being used by International. This way, if you had low or no oil pressure your engine couldn't run. Thus no damage from running could occur as a result. Not sure if that's true but the logic is sound. Anyone else have input??


 So with the 6.4 you have the debut of the Power Stroke common rail. The common rail is, to me, a simpler design. Low pressure fuel from the tank goes to a high pressure pump. The fuel pressure is then increased to crazy high numbers and the distributed to the injectors via a fuel rail and individual injector lines from the rail. Now all of the injectors have high pressure fuel and the injector is electronically controlled for fuel release. Thus entered the era of performance diesel tuning via the ECU/FICM. Now all the timing and fuel events are controlled by the ECU/FICM (depending the vehicle) so all we have to do for added performance is alter these settings for timing and duration and make sure the supplied fuel matches the demand we are requesting of the injector.


 Well in our case we will be demanding more than what the factory injector could flow. So we reached out to Industrial Injection for some bigger ones. What's bigger you ask?? Well mainly the injector nozzle itself in our case. The injector nozzle is the tip if the injector where fuel is sprayed from and into the cylinder. From the factory they are assembled with a pre determined size of holes (small for the design of the engine from a factory standpoint). Now, these holes are so tiny that most people cant seem them with the naked eye (mainly the older people lol) but they are there. By increasing this diameter a slight amount you can deliver more fuel per event. As always, more fuel, more air is more power. My understanding is the nozzle size is increased a couple ways. One is extruded honing. In a nut shell its like squeezing play dough mixed with and abrasive through the tip to slowly increase the size. The other is new tips that are made with laser beams and stuff (not 100% on that process, but I think "and stuff" is an accurate account of what goes on ;)). Extruded honing is also one way to increase the inner diameter of the fuel rail itsself on some applications.


  Now before you start cashing out your 401K to order a set understand this, there is a very fine balance in fuel delivery vs. air. There are way more wrong injector/turbo combinations than right. Some injector manufacturers advertise in horsepower gains while others advertise in fuel delivery gains. I know you can get injectors from stock to 500hp over stock, 10% to 200% over stock. Some call out LPM as the measurement over stock and some call out the hole diameter as the measurement. Now many of those measurements classify into the type of injector, but trust me, no matter what injector your engine requires, there is a big selection to choose from.


 So much, much , much research and design of your build must be done to find the proper injector for your application. To big and its melting your pistons down and smoking out the neighborhood, to small and you don't make any power and it wont run right. Talk to your engine builder or the manufacturer of the injector before you just jump all in on a set and work out what you really need.


  So can you just change the nozzle on a set of injectors?? Most of them you can. But understand that's a lot of money to toss at some used injectors. I suggest having them replaced as a whole unit with the proper design you are after. If you have less than 50K on your injectors and you have kept those fuel filters clean, then have at it. If not, don't risk it, just get a new set from top to bottom.


  Remember, the bigger injectors may also receive additional treatment like large flowing bodies to help accommodate the fuel flow required for your application plus a hoist of other internal upgrades. If you do go the nozzle only replacement way, don't go cheap and have them installed and pre tested. These injectors spray directly into the combustion chamber during the compression stroke. Last thing you need is the tip breaking off because it was poorly extruded or one that is leaking and washing out your cylinder.. Don't ever take the word of some guy in a forum about how to do it at home.. o wait.. haha


 So following my own advice I give to you a new set of (CLASSIFIED) over 6.4L injectors by Industrial Injection. Tested and guaranteed to meet our demands.


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  We were also surprised that Industrial Injection included new hardline to go from the fuel rail to the injector. The factory does state that these are a one time use only and must be replaced. This saved us a couple dollars in assembly cost. Winning..


 You may also consider the fact that a slightly larger nozzle than factory can increase your mpg, assuming you have the other supporting modifications on your vehicle. Injectors play a major role in the diesel engine and its performance. Its worth the time and effort to research them and make them part of your modification top 5 list..


  We could go on for another 10 pages about injector designs, manufacturers, best combinations with what build, but for now lets save that conversation and get on with the show.  

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  • 2 weeks later...

   Alright back to the tare down.. I do apologize I forgot to snap some photos of the transfer case, drive shat and exhaust removal. I will admit getting the transfer case separated from the transmission was a real bear. The bolts come out easy but man that aluminum likes to form a bond.. Be careful swinging a big hammer, I promise you that you can break one or the other. I applied heat and penetrating oil for about 45 minutes with a dead blow hammer before it finally broke its bond. Probably why I forgot to take the pictures lol.


   I opted to leave the torque converter on the engine to lighten the transmission load for removal. This is fine for disassembly, but not recommended for assembly.. Normally you would access these bolts/nuts from the block side, but with the transmission out of the way it was easy to get them off. After that the flex plate can be removed also.


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 After this I turned my attention to the front and removed the fan assembly. Always keep an eye our for reverse threads on these. post-33-0-65008400-1438891707_thumb.jpg


 Next up I removed the fuel cooler and elbow from the low pressure turbo to the high pressure one. Its all one big assembly and will likely be reused. Pretty simple just track your hardware good.




 After that I tackled some exhaust from both heads and the up pipes to the turbo. Remember, we had already deleted the EGR coolers on this truck so that saved us a little hassle on removal.


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 I must say, with the cab off this is really not that bad of a job but I feel for anyone that would undertake this with the cab on..

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Up next was the removal of the factory compound turbo setup. I know the norm is for people to call them twin turbos, well to me they are not twins. Twin turbo would insinuate that both turbos are identical. They are not. Almost all diesel double turbo setups are in fact compound turbos. They have a larger atmospheric turbo that feeds air through a smaller high pressure turbo. As for the exhaust, it passes from the heads through the smaller high pressure turbo then on over to the larger atmospheric pressure turbo.


    The design is the smaller turbo can draw air through the larger turbo and feed the engine on the bottom end. The smaller turbo spools quicker and gives you that good of the line power but it falls on its face shortly there after. This is timed so that when the exhaust pressure gets built up and the larger turbo gets spooling, it can then force air through the compressor side of the smaller turbo and continue feeding the engine for that mid to upper rpm power. The down side is drive pressure from the heads to the smaller turbo. The smaller turbo can create a restriction so to speak, but in stock configuration with stock tuning there are rarely any side effects. However, on heavily modified engines this drive pressure can create problems. I'm sure we will get to that later lol..


 If you had true twin turbos you would have two turbos of the same size feeding the engine. I'm sure this can be done, just not on this build.


  Now for the existing truck issues we had. In the picture you can see the turbo drain pipe. This is the origin of all the oil on our engine. Its really kid of a cheap design aided by the not so quality workmanship of the last mechanic. Sadly this thing was not properly seated into the drain on the turbo and the o ring had damage, thus lots of liquid gold all over the place.. No problem it happens. we will fix it and move on when the time comes. To credit the last mechanic, it really is a cheap press in design that was destine for failure...


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  We also found missing hardware between the mating flanges of the two turbos, were they come together. I would like to point out the mounting of the turbo setup to the engine itself. Crude is an understatement... Also, getting them unseated from the alignment dowels after the turbo retaining mounts are removed is an act of congress in itself. I needed my engine lift and pry bar to get them off.. All of that and yet they use a cheap o ring press fit oil return tube off of the turbo lol...


  All in all they came off so on with disassembly...

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   I forgot to mention one thing we did before we got this far. Right after we lifted the cab we did a compression test on the engine for a reference point. I know this should be done on a warm engine for exact numbers but we were not troubleshooting for an issue. We just wanted to see what kind of numbers it had.


  So after a trip to the local tool store we got an adapter for the glow plug hole and a gauge good to 500psi. One cool thing I found out about this Ford is that the wiring harness on the passenger side can still be ho ked up to a battery and with a signal wire you can still turn the starter over. Winning..


 We removed all of the glow plugs and then started at the number one cylinder and went around. the numbers ranged from 350 to 390. Now to my surprise both of the rear cylinders were the worst, okay not a big surprise but they both barely got 350. All of the other 6 ranged from 370-390... So there must be some truth to the over fueling of the two rear cylinders for the DPF regeneration process causing damage to those rings.. Or it could be that heat in those two cylinders causes early wear.. Still something to research..


  Okay, next was pulling injectors and fuel rails. Pretty simple once you get this far in. Pop off the valve covers, remove the injector wiring harness, remove the individual fuel lines and remove the injectors. No special tool is needed although the injector plugs on the wiring harness can be a pain.. The hold down clamp and hardware also works as the injector removal tool. Pretty simple and proper working design. You should toss the old injector lines. Ford says they are a one time use only item. Not worth it to risk it on a new build so in the recycle bin they went.


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  After the heads are clear of fuel components, lower stand cover for the valve covers and wires you can now see the wonder of the so called rocker arms lol.. Not really sure I understand how they stay in there and work..


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  Plastic parts on a rocker arm?? Maybe someone can enlighten me on this design?? I mean they obviously work at a stock level, but not sure how I feel at a performance level. The one thing we did notice (and I will post a pic later) is the faulty rocker tip design. At the tip of each rocker is a ball that rides on the bridge spanning the valve tips. On almost everyone they had stopped freely spinning and begun to wear themselves out. Those will need changed out no matter what type of build we have planned.. Other than that, they are just cheap flat plate stamped rockers designed to do a job that they had been doing. To my knowledge there isn't anything better in the aftermarket world to date..  

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  Just a reminder when removing the rockers you need to keep turning the engine over so the rockers you are removing have no load on them from the cam or the valve springs. You can pretty much follow the firing order around and get them all. I'm sure, like every motor, there is list of everyone that is loose at TDC and BDC of cylinder one, I just didn't have that list to I took the long approach and did it cylinder to cylinder. Track all your hardware and valve train pieces for identification on assembly. Not sure right now if any of them are a weird shape or size other than intake and exhaust side. Safe than sorry right??


  By the pictures you can tell I had already removed a few things in the back ground like the rear mounted High Pressure fuel pump, the oil cooler, the fuel filter and the turbo base stand off the block. Those are pretty straight forward. The HPFP is held down with Allen head hardware with a tight fit so be carful not to damage those. I also finished removing all of the accessory drives off the front, AC, Water Pump, power steering and front cover. The oil pump is a very tight fit but take your time and it will come off. leave the hammers in the tool box.. 


  Next was clean off the heads and remove them. These have to be the biggest head studs I have ever seen in my life lol. Per standards I just reversed the install sequence for removal to decrease the chances of warping them upon removal. Not really sure if that is fact or fiction, but I'm not here to test any theories of it ha-ha.


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  Now the heads are heavy but there is plenty to grab onto. I lifted them up without problems. Having a friend or engine lift would be a plus. So how did those cylinders look you ask?? Great question I might add. They all looked good with the exception of one piston. It had a baby crack.




 I know it doesn't look like much, but that is the beginning of the end for that guy. Would it have lasted another 100k miles?? Maybe another heavy tow?? We don't know. Surprisingly that was not cylinder 7 or 8 like we had figured, it was number 1.. As for the block and the cylinder walls they all looked par for the course with over 100K miles. Still see cross hatching, not much of a lip build up, but no scuffs or scratches so this block will be a good re-buildable core. That's a plus..

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  • 5 months later...

   Well to keep any followers updated, finally received the heads and turbo kit we ordered from Elite Diesel so many months ago. Not really sure where I stand on their customer service but that's a different topic for I different post I suppose..

  I will post some pictures of the heads and turbos as soon as I take some. We are still waiting for a confirmation on the short block they are supposed to be building for us... I will let you all know what's up once that gets sorted out..


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  • 7 months later...

     Well that was a long wait lol. Finally got the short block back from the Elite Diesel shop so we can get started assembling this thing. Once again, sorry for the near year wait, it just took that long to get our parts back from the supplier and machine shop. Unfortunately this can be an issue when you are choosing to build on a motor that is not normally built upon, or you have a supplier that is behind... While our 6.4 is not a bad motor, the 3 year production run didn't make it very aftermarket friendly. That being said on with the show...


How about some pictures of that new short block?? couldn't agree more.. Smile and say cheese...





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What? Did you think that was all of the block pictures we had?? Here are a couple of the bottom end..




  Ya, its okay to look at them again, I did lol.. Side note, the OTC engine stand.. L...O....V...E... It... I will do a tool review on this thing at a later date, but if you plan to do any out of chassis work on a larger diesel motor this thing is a must have. In these picture I used the provided engine adapter arms. They worked fine but took up a lot of room. Later in my pictures you will see the 6.0/6.4 specific adapter arms I picked up. Worth every dollar.



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Now to cover what is within those cylinder walls pictured above.

  Lets start out with the block. Stock and boring, moving on. Crank, stock but its actually pretty good and no one makes anything better currently. How about those Carrillo Rods?? Those are a thing of beauty. Engineered by Einstein himself and assembled from pure un-obtainium.. (Your product may vary). These things are sweet and yet they will never been seen again after I put the oil pan on lol. But that's a good thing. No matter the engine or the build, if it has connecting rods, they need to be good and so do the rod bolts. These have Carrillo specific rod bolts in them and we are sure they are fine so we didn't not change them for anything else. Carrillo knows what they are doing and I would recommend any of their setups for whatever application you have.

  Pistons are stock... not.. That's why we were rebuilding this thing in the first place lol. EDE offers Mahle thermal coated pistons with gapless rings. I know the gapless rings rock in other applications, but I have no idea of their performance and durability on a diesel. Given the similar function and design, I didn't see how it could be a bad choice so we went with that. Thermal coatings on the pistons are the latest greatest thing in hot rods. Given the extreme cylinder temps in a diesel we deemed it was crucial to have this coating. Not to mention it looks awesome lol.

  Main and rod bearings are both coated with the newer solid dry film for extra protection. I also should cover the block prep. It may be a stock block, but like any good build, the oil galley plugs were threaded and plugged with proper fittings to insure no failures down the road. The block also received a fire ring treatment. Some may call it the fire ring, others may call it the O-ring. Either way it is a metal wire laid into a machined groove around each cylinder to help increase the head gasket seal. It is a very fine wire that is matched to a properly machined groove. Most diesel guys know this is a must do for high boost applications. it works in conjunction with your factory head gasket for the ultimate seal. That and a whole lot of clamp from those ARP head studs, but we will cover that later.


  So block, rods, bearings, pistons and o yes main studs. We opted for the ARP 2000 over the newly accepted H-11 from A1. No offense to A1or there products, I just have a very long running experience with ARP. I cant say enough good things about ARP. I encourage everyone to get check out their web page and order the free catalogue. I never knew there was so much technology in hardware. jeez.. these guys break it down and they know the engineering of hardware. No build is complete without the proper hardware and fasteners. We used ARP on everything we could. Mains, head studs, flex plate, crank adapter, harmonic balancer, the list goes on. Worth every penny in my opinion.

  Camshaft.. well its not stock and its billet.. that's all we have to say about that for now lol. EDE offers a variety of cams with the short block. We opted for a custom grind to suit our needs. Moving on lol The lifters are of a heavy duty label, but I really cant speculate what makes them heavy duty.. I will let you know when I get some documentation back on them.


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Next is the big ole shiny new oil pan. Its a fabricated piece as I showed above in the item description. Now, as always, the first snag. This pan has a thicker lip on it than the stock pan. So there were a few pieces of hardware that were to short. Mainly the bolts across the very front and the ones across the back. Like 5 or 6 bolts in all. Reason is, those specific bolts pass through the pan, adapter and into the block. All other bolts just go from pan to adapter. Those were all plenty long. So a quick trip to the hot rod shop to score a 1/4" longer bolt. like a 6 dollar fix. On to the next problem lol




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   Well here is the crank adapter for the rear of the motor. I wish I could tell you why they have this adapter that goes from the crank to the flex plate/flywheel with a spacer but I cant. What I can tell you is that it is balanced on the crank and its an extreme no go to remove it and just put it back on. It can lead to catastrophic failure of everything within 5 square miles. Okay, maybe not that bad but it can break your transmission and your motor and if that happened to me, I would smash everything within 5 square miles..

   Okay per ARP instructions. 1 bolt swap at a time in a specific pattern.. simple enough right?? O, don't forget the ARP ultra torque lube.


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 On to the heads and the head studs. Now I wish I could tell you that there was a lot of port work that could be done to these heads. While any work is good work, these heads don't give you much to work with. in my opinions the gains are worth it, but don't thing you are going to double the runner volume or flow numbers for that much. They really didn't leave much in the molds for you to clear out.

  Since we had  larger valves put in at the machine shop I have no pictures of the rest of the port job. These were done at EDE as well. Got a little cleaning to get that dykem blue off, but that's fine.

 How about those ARP head studs??... I would like to give a shout out to the horsepower gods.. We have seen the top of the mountain and it is good... Follow those instructions and you will be ready to make some power..






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    Well grab a friend, forklift or an engine hoist because you're gonna need it to get these things on without hurting yourself lol. And to back up and check out those head gaskets. We went with Victor Rienze MLS (multi Layer Steel) factory replacement. Black diamond I believe they call it. Compressed thickness of .059 with a piston protrusion of .027 (with average) for a clearance of .032.. that's how we like it.

 More of those ARP studs.. These things get a final torque value of 275 ft lbs.. Do you know what it takes to get that kind of numbers lol.. A 3/4" drive 4' long torque wrench, that's what lol. As always don't forget your ARP ultra torque..







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  Couple of boring items but they have to go on lol. Rear cover and new O-ring. Front cover and new oil pump. Sorry for not grabbing pictures of the new pump. It was an EDE billet tool steel one. Its a part they make so we thought we would try it out. looks just like the factory one ha-ha.. Also up is the new HPFP (high pressure fuel pump) one of two...

  Pretty much follow the book for installs and make sure you add sealer on the front cover gasket where needed and use your alignment pins. Rear cover gets a pit of sealer also. Next is the front and rear main seals.  




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Okay I lied. I wanted to show you this new piece from Bullet Proof Diesel. The 6.4 water pump. OMG, this is like the nicest piece of machining work I have seen in a long time. It was a last minute add to the build and I cant say enough about the customer service, quality and attention to detail with their parts. Its truly a shame this thing will go unnoticed once the build is complete, but just knowing its in there makes me happy.

  We have a couple others things from these guys coming up in this thread so stick around or scroll down if were done lol.







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   Okay, now we can talk about those front and rear seals lol. So ya, you need a special tool to properly install the front and rear seal with the wear rings. We shopped for a bit and came up with Stallion Tool for the rear and the OTC for the front. I use lock tight on the ring and a little soapy water for the seal. Tools worked great and they slid in. I highly recommend Stallion. cheaper than most and made in America. Gotta love that. 





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  One more piece for the night. The EDE flex plate. Its a beautiful work of art in my opinion. This with those ARP bolts and we are ready for the drag strip lol. Install is per the ARP instructions EDE recommends their plate due to a tighter balancing threshold they use. Say no more, we are in for the long haul..




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   So where were we at. o that's right. Time for the harmonic balancer. For this build we went the way of the ATI Super Damper. Pretty nice setup and well built. Install on the 6.4 is pretty simple since it is a bolt on style not a press on like other engines. Install is strait forward with the exception of alignment of the three pieces. It only truly fits together one way, just slow down and do it right. It has previsions for all the factory belts.

  I have never ran an ATI product so I cant give you any details about performance. After seeing how it works, and inspecting its construction, I now know why people use them lol. I think we will be very pleased.






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   Okay now for some more boring parts. Stock turbo pedestal with new O-ring, new oil cooler (never ever reuse one... ever), it has new upper and lower O-rings. Original oil cooler lid with a slight modification.. That's right. I said modification... Cant tell what it is?? Better scroll down to my next post..





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    Bullet Proof Diesel rocks.. Once again, machining is above top notch. They address problem parts within the factory set up and give you replacements. Their instruction booklet was better than any book I own in my house. They even went through the trouble of layering all the supplied hard ware in a bag so each phase of the process is represented by the next bag of parts in the chain... Attention to detail military style right there.

  In the picture you can see how they have addressed one of the factory oil bypass piston and seal (on the right) with a properly designed one on the left. Their design gives full support on the oil bypass seal to ensure it seats properly and for the life of the part. Its the little stuff that impresses me the most. If they are willing to address a couple millimeters of a seal seat, that means they are going to address everything they do to perfection. Well done gents... well done.


  Later on I will post the rest of the kit so you can see what we have. But in a nut shell it is a remote oil filter and air to oil cooler. its worth reading on to see lol..



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Megatron...In conjunction with these engine modifications, the automatic transmission upgrades are crucial with this kind of engine build.  Terrific research involved, you're providing a real service for owners wanting to take a late Power Stroke engine to this level!  Brakes, transmission stamina and driveline strength are each essential with this level of engine building.  Art and engineering come together at your shop!


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On ‎9‎/‎10‎/‎2016 at 10:36 AM, Moses Ludel said:

Megatron...In conjunction with these engine modifications, the automatic transmission upgrades are crucial with this kind of engine build.  Terrific research involved, you're providing a real service for owners wanting to take a late Power Stroke engine to this level!  Brakes, transmission stamina and driveline strength are each essential with this level of engine building.  Art and engineering come together at your shop!




 Couldn't agree more and for this build we have a full billet transmission form Suncoast. Billet triple disk converter and the billet flex plate from EDE. I will be adding full detail pictures of that later. Same with the brakes, they are 6 piston upgrades from SSBC (Stainless Steel Brake Company). There should be a couple pictures of these back earlier in this post.

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  Well if you are actually reading this, and not just looking at the pictures, you would remember me saying the turbos came in a while back ago and I would post some pictures. Fine... I will post some pictures of the turbos to help us get through the boring assembly stuff.


  Okay first up was the stocker stuff incase you wondered what the brain trust at ford did for a compound setup. Compact and effective and I'm sure cost friendly. Worked as intended from a factory standpoint. Design issues in my opinion, oil drain tube for high pressure is sketchy and is know for leaking if not assembled perfectly. Not very impressed with the clamp down style mounting design, and not big on the mating interface between to two turbos. I'm not an engineer and I know they don't care about my opinion. Do any of these things make it faulty?? Not really, just thought we would see something better for the high dollar engineers and budget at Ford.. Moving on.




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   Okay to clarify a few things about working on this engine. No I'm not an expert but I can read. Attached is a picture of the service manuals that pertain to this specific vehicle. If you ever plan to take an engine this far apart and you don't already know all the specs, I highly advise you invest in these. Nothing against the manuals they sell at the local parts store, just remember those are geared towards basic maintenance issues encountered for the average owner. They are not going to cover in detail what these books do.

  So while I don't post what I torqued this or that to, or what specific tool I used to install a seal, I did however look it up and do it per the book or better. These are the same books at the dealership (well now I assume they are all e-file at most shops). The knowledge and how to within the covers is immense and should be read and understood before assuming what you read on the interweb is the right.

  Understand that this book does not cover any aftermarket items you will be installing, but it will help on a build like this and all the stock part you retain. I mean just properly tightening the injector tubes between the injector to the fuel rail is a full page of how to, get it wrong and you can ruin the motor..


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Megatron...Aside from the photogenic engine assembly work, it does matter whether you use the right engine disassembly and assembly guidelines.  I've written columns and best selling automotive books, and all of this work reflects continued reliance on OEM (first generation) shop service guidelines like you're sharing here.  My resource library is now an 8' wide by 6' high bookcase stacked with well used shop manuals and reference material.  Then there's the CD library...

Anyone "winging it" without these OEM shop guidebooks is doing their projects a disservice, lowering reliability, and in the worst case, creating a safety hazard.  Professionally, I've been a textbook and service manual tech for a half-century now.  Books and modern CD manuals in PDF remain a part of each new project, and with a first generation (OEM) service manual in hand, I'm willing to tackle any mechanical task!

I heartily endorse your approach and encourage members and guests to seek out and use factory, first generation shop manuals and FSMs.  When I purchase a new or pre-owned motor vehicle, a road or dirt motorcycle, any kind of trailer, welding equipment, or any other equipment, my first priority is to acquire the FSM.  (In your case this is a set of books, as Ford and many other vehicle manufacturers split up manuals into service area sub-groups.)  If available, the contemporary CD version can save cost, takes up less space and allows printing of individual pages rather than smudging up an expensive printed manual!  With a CD version, the "book" can even go into the shop on a laptop, tablet or iPad. 

Over the last fifty years, I have saved a small fortune by not having to sublet mechanical work, and these savings have readily paid for needed specialty tools and the shop manuals...Don't spin a wrench without an FSM!


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Ok, back to the grind.. On deck were the new Hamilton Cams Push rods. Zack Hamilton is an awesome guy and has always helped me when it comes to making the right decisions on valve train parts. Very few company owners will take the time to address your issues and point you to the right product. Most just want you to buy the biggest baddest most expensive thing they sell, not Zack. Now I know he is busy so your results may very, but he got us squared away with the right stuff and we are impressed with the quality. They are stronger than stock but they aren't the biggest on the market. They are right for our application and that's what we want.

  Install is a bit challenging. The internet said you had to stand 20' away from the engine and then toss them like throwing darts while getting them to land in the block and hope they seat on the lifter.. Luckily I used my service manual instead and saved myself some heartache. LOL I know the book says engine oil, but with new metal to metal parts I prefer I high pressure assemble lubricant. I doubt anybody would disagree with that. If it was the same part going back in that came out oil would be fine given that's what they operate in, given a completely dry motor, I choose extra protection.





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  • 3 weeks later...
16 hours ago, Tc_01 said:

Nice job so far man! Excited to see it all done! Im getting ready to start my 6.4 project in a couple weeks. Out of curiosity, what kind of camera did you use for your pictures?

Hey TC_01 thanks for the reply. Um ya as far as the camera, its just the one on my Samsung Galaxy S6 lol. The trick is to clean the grease smudges off of the lens before you take the picture lol. Once the engine is complete and ready for install, I plan to have a friend capture some true quality pictures photo shoot style. Also, the pictures I post on here have been reduced a considerable amount to make the page requirements.

  I have some new stuff to update, but we are currently waiting on a few pieces to finish the mock up stage of the turbo system. Once that is done it should move along a lot faster.  

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Well since I am here I guess I can add a couple things. First up was the install of the new mean green starter. Um not much do indulge on other than the fact it is an awesome looking piece. It has more cranking torque than the factory one. It is more compact, but for this build that doesn't really come into play. Just a feature if you will.



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Next, but temporarily, was the BD 6.0 exhaust manifolds. We are planning to have these thermally coated since any type of wrap wouldn't be possible. Mainly because of the design. Now if you skipped all of the first post, and you are just a picture surfer, you may notice I said 6.0 and not 6.4. That's correct. Its widely accepted that the 6.0 was a bit better in design due to the elbow at the back of the block being part of the cast material. On the 6,4 this was part of the up tube and was made of thin wall tubing that's know to fail over time. Given the 6.4 and the 6.0 or basically the same motor, with revisions, this swap is possible with no modifications to any factory parts.






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    Well on to one of my least favorite parts on this motor.. the factory rocker arm assemblies.. ugg.... Not sure who was on R&D over at camp International for Ford development, but man you need to dream a little bigger.. To me this is a part built by the budget department not the engine department. I could go on and on but for the sake of my blood pressure I will move on.. blahhhh, ok last time. Well either way nothing is current available on the aftermarket scene to replace these in the 6.4. We did reach out to the few we could fins that build them for the 6.0, but as of now they had not gone any further than prototyping a set. They claimed maybe early next year so we can hope lol.

   Well since I cant leave them out of the motor I guess I better assemble them the best way I can think. I broke out my trusty Cleveite assembly lubricant and coated all the moving parts. This will at least get them through start up and break in.. luck will get them through the rest of their life lol.. For the trained eye reader, yes I had to reuse one of the yellow plastic retainer clips as one of the new black clips was damaged in the factory packaging. No big deal, its still probably stronger than the rest of the rocker hahaha.. ok really that was the last one lol.


  On a side note, make sure extra lube is added to the rocker tip itself. On the old ones many of these had failed on this motor at only 100K + miles. Not impressive at all. there is a tiny pin hole in the rocker that allows some oil to drain down and lubricate the back of this socket... something tells me it fails to do so on a quality basis..








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Moving on.. Or not.. Lets get those marvels of engineering installed on our high dollar engine shall we?? New rocker stands came with the new rockers. They fit like factory because they were lol. Rocker sequence is nothing out of the ordinary. Rotate the engine to the desired spot and install the rocker set per the book, rotate and repeat until all 8 sets are in. I would recommend some high pressure start up protecting under the valve bridge caps, push rod cups and valve tips where they contact the bridges themselves. IT may be a minute after startup before these parts get proper lubrication.







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  What say ye about some fuel rails and injectors?? I say we put them on and get a little closer to completion.. Fuel rails have been ported a little and injectors are new, but larger than factory. The bodies are designed to flow better and the major modification is the hole size in the tip. This allows for more fuel flow per injector event thus equaling more power and more smiles..

  Anytime you mess with the injector lines on a diesel engine it is highly recommended you replace the injector supply lines/tubes as well. That we did gents.. Plus new o-rings and injector washers. Its not worth the risk to use the old stuff and have leaks.










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Lets get all those fuel lines in place shall we?? The book says torque to value X, then rotate 60 degrees or one flat of the nut.. I did the paint pen marks to make a visual confirmation. After that, add the wiring harness. O, the fuel rails are specific to the side they go on so be aware of that. This will also depict what side each injector harness goes on. Only real difference is one side has the fuel rail pressure sensor and the other does not. We choose new harness given their location in the motor. Don't really want to be in here 6 months from now with a misfire issue 







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   How about some custom parts?? Sure why not lol. This is the additional HPFP (High Pressure Fuel Pump) and bracket. This was a fitment run and there were a couple holes that didn't line up all that well... or at all. But that's why you mock it up before paint or powder coating. The second pump takes up real estate where (i believe to be) a second alternator would go for an ambulance application of this motor?? Could be wrong but i think that's accurate, Anyone??

  The pump comes with some idlers, pulleys and a separate belt to be driven off of the crank. Pictures on that later. 

  O and check out that snazzy new alternator.. 





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Megatron...The 6.4L Power Stroke is a very "busy" engine by design.  Simply wading through an OEM-stock rebuild would be enough for most.  Your approach, including research and judgment calls about aftermarket upgrades that are compatible with each other, has been monumental...This should be quite a 6.4L engine.

How would you sum up the 6.0L versus 6.4L Power Stroke engine differences?  Many are satisfied with the stock 6.4L Power Stroke.  Should they be?  What's the reliability level of a stock, in-the-chassis 6.4L and its intrinsic design?


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I know what you mean about those rockers looking extremely inadequate, the design seems so cheap and rushed. I remember when i bought my first 6.4, i was reading the forums about common problems and a few threads about the rockers came up. I hadn't seen what a 6.4 rocker looked like yet, and one guy posted a picture of a rocker with a broken-off tip. I remember looking at the picture thinking " ok thats a picture of some kind of little plate that must hold the rocker arm in, but where's the rocker arm?...oh crap, that IS the rocker!" 

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Hey Moses,

 To answer your question about the 6.0 versus the 6.4. Well its complicated. To me the 6.4 did improve on a few key things that plagued the 6.0, but they also made some changes in the natural evolution of design that fixed a few others. The big change was leaving behind the old HPOP (High Pressure Oil Pump) system that drove the injectors. That has been replaced with a more common HPFP system and matching injectors. 

 Other changes include bigger head bolt sizes to address head gasket failures and a revised EGR cooler system. i think the biggest change was to the addition of .4 liters to displacement so they could change the name from 6.0 to 6.4 and win the hearts and minds of the consumers that they were no longer getting the 6.0.. Even though they were still getting a band-aid version if you will. 

  To be honest the 6.0 is a good motor with a few things replaced. I do understand that's not what you want to do when you just paid 60K for a brand new truck, and for that it will always be down on the list of peoples choice. But for entry level diesel guys, a 6.0 that has been purged of all its gremlins is a dang good truck. 

 Now the 6.4 guys don't have as much to fix but they still have a few issues to address. I think you will get more for your money shopping for a 6.0 given you take into consideration what they guy before spent to replace head gaskets, egr's and FICM's. 



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Megatron...It sounds like the 6.4L Power Stroke has the improved head bolt diameters.  I know ARP hardware is available for the 6.0L, but this is the same size/diameter as stock, right?  Will ARP or other high-grade aftermarket hardware prevent head gasket failure on a 6.0L rebuild?

Is the 6.7L a spin-off engine, or has Ford taken over that engine design?  Navistar has been a big player since the 7.3L Power Stroke.  What role does I-H play with the 6.4L and 6.7L?  Is the 6.7L considered gremlin-proof or is it another beta test project for Ford?

The cost of a new F-series truck hints that this is recovery pricing to offset Ford's rather large losses with the 6.0L Power Stroke and Triton gasoline engine quirks.  6.0L Power Stroke models are devalued in the used market, there are bargains to be had if the buyer allows for the laundry list of upgrades needed on a 6.0L.


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  • 7 months later...

Whats up?? For the record I haven't forgot about anyone, just been busy with other projects. As you can tell we have decided to go just a bit further (like most build do) and clean the frame up and fix a few rust spots. Easier and cheaper now than it would be after its all back together. Got some new parts and products to try out so we should be getting a few more updates on the build. 




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