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Discussion Starter #1
Ok ive done alot to my '03 Ex over the last month and am down to my last 1K.... So do i buy a ported intake? an upgraded alternator... or what do you think. Im to the point of installing the intake, so you can gauge what i have left to put on.

Heres a list of what ive done so far/parts list, if its not listed then its stock:
Adrinaline HPOP
S&B Air Intake
Airmotive Rebuild Kit
ARP Head Studs
ARP Lube
BDP Water Pump
BPD Oil Cooler
Coolant Filter
EGR Delete
Fan Clutch '97 F250 7.3, Motorcraft
Fan Clutch Adapter, BPD
Ford WP Gasket
Fumoto Drain Valve
Heater Pipe
HPOP Cover Gasket
Intake Hot Tank, Factory
IPR Screen
KC Turbo DIY Upgrade, stage 1
Lower Hose
Oil/Fuel Filter Caps, Sinister
Regulated Fuel Return, Sinister
SCT Livewire TS+
Thermostat
Titanium Turbo Bolts
Up Pipe
Turbo Oil Drain upgrade
Turbo Oil Feed Line upgrade
Updated HPOP cover
Upper Hose
 

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Trust me, I got this...
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1,397 Posts
Dont get an intake. Its a waste of money for you. No real point unless you port and polish the heads and bore the engine over. Get a BPD ficm instead is what I vote.
 

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Train Whistlin' Ex driver
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55 Posts
If your motor/trans is squared away, how's your suspension? The rear sway bar has been the best upgrade so far on my Ex. I did upgrade the alternator... The the 140amp upper from the f250 dual setup. Same price as the 110amp and works like a champ!
 

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Master BS'er
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Dont get an intake. Its a waste of money for you. No real point unless you port and polish the heads and bore the engine over. Get a BPD ficm instead is what I vote.
Bingo. No point at all since it's forced induction. Will it help? Sure. Will it be noticeable? Nope.

What I believe it will actually do is lower the boost a smige and up the drive pressure an equal smidge. That's my guess anyway
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Yea i thought the same thing on the intake. I would have just liked if mine was an 04+ to make getting to the IPR easier and not having to pull the turbo.
The trucks got 62k miles on it so everything i was doing is preventative. I was leaning towards an alternator and wire upgrade... keep those batteries and FICM in good shape. Along with the starter
upgrade.

The truck needs shocks and a swaybar would be nice. I was just thinking things that;ll keep that engine solid. Plus suspensions easier to get to than engine parts.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
What about a FASS system? im getting mixed reviews on them
 

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One thing we always hear about these is they are hard on batteries and the electrical system in general. By far the best thing I have done to keep my voltages stable under any condition was a three-way electrical upgrade. First, and probably foremost, is get a GOOD HO alternator. Not one of these ebay knockoffs. Look up car stereo alternators...GP, Mechman, Apex, and so on. If you have stock electrical draws (no upgraded stereo or lots of fog lights, etc) then I would probably get a 180 amp alt minimum. I have a 250 amp, but I also have a sound system...and it's not big enough. lol Along with that alternator, you're going to need to find a shorter belt. These come with smaller pulleys so you get increased output at idle.

The next thing you'll want to do is what's called the Big-3 or Big-4 (depending on what you do exactly). This is essentially adding in more wiring for your batteries and alternator to make sure you're actually going to get that 180 and up amps out of it. The stock size wire coming from the alternator is NOT going to cut it for an HO alt. You will want some 2/0 copper wire (you don't want CCA...and despite what people claim, it doesn't have to be rated OFC), lugs for the ends (make sure they're tinned!), a crimper for the lugs (can get em for cheap on ebay and they work great), and a fuse holder with fuse rated just over what your new alternator is rated for. Even though you already have stock connections, run a wire from the negative of one battery to the negative of the other. Do the same for the positive. Next, run a wire from the negative on the passenger side battery to the alternator casing (most HO alts have a bolt post for this), and/or run a new ground wire to the engine block. Finally, for the alternator output, leave the stock wire in place and add in your own with that fuse in-line. You now have a robust charging system, but you're not done.

If you have standard lead-acid batteries it may be time to upgrade depending on how old they are. Look into getting an AGM battery. It's still lead-acid, but it's sealed, has a higher rate of charge/discharge, can withstand more abuse, etc. When I swapped over I noticed an improvement immediately in how well she started up in the morning, and how little voltage drop I would get when my subwoofers were hitting hard. If you decide to go with AGMs, don't fall for the hype and get some fancy uber name brand like an Optima or a Northstar, etc. A Duralast, SuperStart, or whatever the big parts store brand is these days will be just fine. I can't remember where the thread is on here, but a while back someone did a lot of digging to find out that there are only like four major battery manufacturers, and more often than not the same exact battery is just re-branded and sold for a different price.

You can do all this for less than the $1,000 you have left. It doesn't sound like much, but the benefit will be much farther reaching than you can imagine. Anyway, just my 2 cents.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Weatherlite: Thanks thats what i was thinking of doing. I appreciate the detailed response! Im looking at what alternator to get now. I dont mind spending more now on a higher than i need unit. This way when i decide to add whatever i wont have to come back to it.
 

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Probably a 250 amp will serve you well. Gives room for growth, like you said. I like Mechman and CES personally. However, before you buy, I'd recommend calling them and talking about fitting whatever amp rating you want in the largest size casing possible. I purchased the 250 in a standard sized case. Later, when I wanted to upgrade, I found out I would have to buy a whole new alternator because they couldn't fit any more wire into the standard sized case. They said I should have gotten the large sized case so that I could have had them take the 250 amp guts out and put something bigger in...would have cost me less than just getting a new alt.
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Was just looking at Mechman before i saw your response.. They've got a 7796320 which it 320 amps and on sale for $499. They seem legit and i know things dont last forever but it its solid and balanced it will get pretty damn close.

Here’s a performance video with a 6.0 alt:

 
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