2007 Lifted “Off-Road” Crown Victoria Pt.1 Purchasing

The goal here is to purchase a used 2003+ P71 Crown Victoria for the sole purpose of modifying to drive around on desert trails and forest roads.  Why a Crown Victoria?  They are cheap, body on frame, V8, rear wheel drive, super reliable, plus with the additional coolers and suspension components for police use it’ll hold up.  I have no interest in actual ‘wheeling’ or owning a truck so it’s perfect, plus an off-road car is more visually interesting (to me).

My plan is to install a set of 3-inch lift cups/spacers intended for donks on 28’s and some all-terrain 31’s for the stock 16 inch police steel wheels. Continue reading

2003 Chevrolet AstroLanche Custom Van

astrolanche1Have you ever dreamed of having the comfort of a full-size van with the cargo capacity of a short-bed truck? Have we got the vehicle for you! Meet the Chevrolet AstroLanche.

This amazing vehicle began life as a run-of-the-mill 2003 Chevrolet Astro Van. At some point, it was converted to have a shortened pickup bed, similar to the Hummer H3T.

astrolanche2The bed uses the Astro van’s “Dutch doors” as a tailgate, while the rear hatch has been moved forward to just behind the second row of seats. Below the rear glass, there appears to be nothing separating the bed from the passenger area – which is great for hauling lumber or perhaps a full-size ladder.

For all the custom work that has gone into this truck-van hybrid, I think my favorite thing about it has to be the name “AstroLanche.”

1999 Mercury Grand Marquis Wagon (Colony Park)

1999_mercury_grand_marquis_colony_park_wagon-taurus-rearWe’ve all seen ‘photoshopped’ wagons that never existed and if you lurk the crownvic.net forums hard enough you might even find a real life aero body with a 2nd generation Taurus hatch bolted on. Continue reading

The Little Accessory that Shouldn’t

Today there is no shortage of automotive accessories that allow each owner to truly personalize their vehicle. Lets face it, if we plunk down any given amount for a vehicle, no matter how much or how little, and you have to drive it on a daily basis, why wouldn’t you want to gussie it up a bit. I have driven by my fair share of people whose rear deck is exploding with hello kitty dolls, or other various stuffed animals.

While I may not personally partake in parading stuffed animals throughout my vehicle, or decide that I need 5 “speed holes” per fender with a completely non-functional hood scoop, if someone so chooses that direction so be it. Thankfully when we come across the latter it generally makes you smile, or perhaps be the talking point on your next road trip as you place “spot the import with the most useless add-on.”

Ok I made that game up, but it doesn’t mean it couldn’t be something fun for people to do on their way to a car show, right? Now, with all of the accessories known to man, there is one that just makes me cringe. It is an accessory that to this day I don’t even understand what type of “aesthetics” it adds to a vehicle. That’s right, I am referring to truck nuts.

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Modifying shock hangers on my 1996 C2500

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I know I’ve introduced the work I’ve done on my 1965 C-10; better known as the Futuramic Farm Truck (of which progress has been held captive searching for it’s Rocket heart). Now I’d like to introduce my daily driver*, a 1996 Chevrolet C2500. A unique vehicle, as only 5% of the C2500 trucks produced it’s year came with it’s powertrain: The underdog L30 5.0L Vortec mill. Rated at 230hp and 285ft lbs of torque, it wasn’t too far off from it’s vaunted big-brother, the L31 5.7L, rated at 250hp. Although it’s rather torque deficient compared to the 5.7L’s 330 ft lbs. Continue reading

96-02 “Vortec” Silencer Box Removal (Pop Can Mod)

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I’m sure a fellow 1st Generation Vortec engine aficionado has probably done this before, but in needing constant access to my distributor and intake manifold, I found a super cheap solution for getting rid of the big square Vortec silencer box.

If you’re tired of this bulky appliance taking up space above your intake manifold and reducing intake noise, we have a nearly free solution to get rid of it.

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