“Just picked up my new van! First stop, Agile Off Road!” – Billy, probably.
It can take forever to find the right van. Just ask Billy. After a few years of dumping an incredible amount of time & money into the sinking ship known as his last conversion van, he and his wife decided they were ready for an upgrade.
Search criteria: Facelifted fourth generation (2008-2014). V10 Engine. Clean. Low mileage. Well maintained.
After months of Craigslist searches, eBay bidding, and trolling through the classified sections on a dozen forums… They found their unicorn! Even better, it was only 30 minutes away from their Huntington Beach home. Billy immediately submitted an offer. After deals with other buyers fell through he knew this van was meant to be his and snatched it up right away.
Having previously owned an older model 4×4 converted Ford van, Billy already had a vision for how he wanted his build to go. Step one, smoothing out this new van’s horrendous ride. Like most Quigley conversion owners will tell you, the ride isn’t horrible once the vehicle is fully loaded, but nobody in their right mind would confuse the drive with a comfortable experience. This is where our world-renowned Agile Off Road Ride Improvement Package (RIP-Kit) comes into play.
Our Ford Van Ride Improvement Package explained:
4×4 conversion designs from Quigley, QuadVan, Sportsmobile, etc. are very sound designs with proven functionality and reliability, but drive them over speed bumps, potholes, or off-road, and you may begin to doubt your purchase decision. Here’s the problem: their front suspension suffers from limited bump travel primarily due to the front frame cross member interfering with the front axle differential housing at full bump. In both designs, cross members are modified to provide maximum clearance, but the unintended result of this modification is an underwhelming 1.5 inches (or less) of bump travel before the front suspension “bottoms out.” Any impact is directly transferred to the van and its unfortunate occupants.
Our “Ride Improvement Package” AKA “RIP-Kit” consists of/combines— custom tuned and valved FOX 2.0 Performance Series IFP Shocks, FOX Performance Series Stabilizer and matched coil springs. Once installed, it eliminates binding of the sway bar, provides rear suspension ride stability and controls body roll and sway while doubling the bump travel, increasing overall suspension travel, and increases the spring height and spring force to boot.
Billy came to us with the idea of getting his rig outfitted with the “basics” (an Agile RIP-Kit, Aluminess Roof Rack & Bumpers, wheels, tires, and a winch). However (like most of our customers) after a quick conversation with John his wish list grew exponentially. You just never know how much stuff you “need”. After re-gearing the rear end, adding an ARB locking rear differential, additional batteries, a roof vent, a ton of auxiliary lighting, ARB Twin On-Board air compressor, fender flares, and more (see full build specs below) his wishlist was complete.
Sure, we’ve done a lot of RIP-Kits & 4×4 Conversions, but no two builds are alike. One of our favorite features of this build is the super clean double house battery system install Jesus did. Dual auxiliary batteries are mounted on the passenger side underneath the center of the vehicle, with a Blue Sea relay & voltmeter wired into a panel just above it on the interior. This set up allows the interior powered outlets to operate on their own circuit independent of the ignition battery. The voltmeter’s digital readout makes it possible to monitor the status of the house system and the relay to automatically switch on and off to keep the battery charged and eliminate parasitic power draw.
We also put a special emphasis on this vehicle’s lighting. The Baja Designs XL-R Sports LED lights Billy selected easily mount into the huge holes in the Aluminess front bumper. However clean installation and nice aesthetic are a high priority for us. We custom made plates to fill the gap surrounding the lights for a clean install. Lastly, nobody likes a dark campsite so we wired half a dozen Rigid Industries Load lights along the rails of the roof rack just below the ARB awning to light up the night.
Just about everyone who comes through our doors is an outdoor enthusiast. However, just as no two builds are the same, neither are any two of our customers. Billy and his wife are self-proclaimed storm chasers. Whenever and wherever there’s fresh snow or great surf, you’ll find them there.
Once the installations were complete we called Billy in and spent the morning going over every new feature on his rig inside, outside, and underneath. From where the onboard air compressor is mounted & how to access the air sources (located on each bumper), how the battery relay/switching system operates, proper usage of the winch, operation of the differential lockers, auxiliary lighting controls, etc. After the brief tutorial, he was ready for his next adventure… which just so happened to be a trip up to Mammoth Mountain that same afternoon.
Now that his storm-chasing E350 is as comfortable & capable as can be, the next step is insulation and building out the interior which Billy & his wife will be tackling in the upcoming months. We’ll be sure to keep you updated over the next few months on the progression of this build. Sign up for our newsletter below for updates. We’re as excited as you are to see how this one progresses as well as some other unique builds we have in store in the coming months.
Interested in more information on this build? Check out the photo gallery & build sheet below. Many of these products are now available for your Ford E-Series 4×4 conversion van in our online store.
2010 Ford E-350 – Regular Body – Quigley 4×4 Conversion
- Suspension: Agile Off Road Ford 4×4 Ride Improvement Package (incl. springs, shocks, steering stabilizer, etc.) – click for more info
- Gearing: 4.10:1 Front & Rear gears w/ selectable ARB locking rear differential
- Wheels: Pro Comp Series 7069 17×9 8 x 170 – click for more info
- Tires: BFG K02 285/70-17 – click for more info
- Front Bumper: Aluminess – click for more info
- Rear Bumper: Aluminess w/ optional spare tire & deluxe box – click for more info
- Roof Rack: Aluminess Double Loop w/rain gutter mount – click for more info
- Roof Box: Customer supplied Thule Box w/ Agile Off Road custom mount (to fit box as low as possible on rack)
- Roof Vent: Fantastic Fan 14 x 14″ w/ impact plastic seal ring
- Winch: Warn Industries VR12-S – click for more info
- Lighting: Rigid Industries E-Series 50” light bar – click for more info
- Lighting: Baja Designs XL-R Sports LED lights – click for more info
- Lighting: Rigid Industries A-Series LED lights – click for more info
- Awning: ARB Retractable 2500 – click for more info
- Electrical: (2) AGM 70 Deep Cycle Batteries w/OEM factory box
- Electrical: Blue Sea ML-ACR Automatic Battery Charge RelayElectrical: Blue Sea Waterproof Cable Clam roof wiringElectrical: Blue Sea Relay Box w/ voltmeter, USB charging & house lighting switches
- Air: ARB Twin Compressor w/ Agile Off Road Mount Plate & custom air sources mounted on front & rear bumper featuring 3/8” “Push-In Air Line” – click for more info
- Fender Flares: Bushwacker Fender Flares Extend-a-fenders – click for more info