Found my Van to Convert

The friendliest place on the web for anyone with an RV or an interest in RVing!
If you have answers, please help by responding to the unanswered posts.

Seon

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 30, 2011
Posts
402
Location
Lake Camanche, CA
As I mentioned in another thread that I wanted to change over from my Yukon XL to a van so that I can convert it for use on those multi days solo fishing trips.
I searched craigslist for several weeks and today found and bought from the original owner a 2010 Ford E350 window van with only 56k original miles.

Before starting the the interior conversion, I need to buy and install a class IV trailer hitch and a 7 pin harness.  So many to choose from so rather than buying the wrong hitch and 7 pin harness, I thought I'd ask recommendations on what brand and part number hitch and which 7 pin harness that's a plug and play.

Getting dark now so will take pictures and post in a day or two.
 

Gizmo100

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 28, 2018
Posts
2,968
phil-t said:
I would check out e-trailer.com.  They have good stuff and should list by application.

They also offer tech support to help you get the right stuff and get it installed right the first time.
 

Seon

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 30, 2011
Posts
402
Location
Lake Camanche, CA
Will call e-trailer on Monday, thx.

Another question, is your conversion van registered as a commercial or RV, or passenger vehicle?
 

Gary RV_Wizard

Site Team
Joined
Feb 2, 2005
Posts
74,628
Location
At our Silver Springs FL home
I need to buy and install a class IV trailer hitch and a 7 pin harness.
Not a whole lot to discuss there. A Class IV hitch receiver is a standard size & shape, and the weight capacity is pretty much defined by it being Class IV (up to 10,000 lbs).  The mounting brackets for the receiver will be unique to the van chassis.  Most Class IV receivers are the 2" receiver size, but a few are offered in the 2.5" size.  2" is fine and there are numerous ball mounts available for 2" receivers.

https://www.reese-hitches.com/learning_center/general-towing-classes
The 7-pin trailer connector is also industry-standard, though there may be some differences in how the wires are connected at installation. That's custom to your needs and not an attribute of the connector. There are two basic styles, though, one with blades for the connection and the other with pins. I think the blade type is industry standard for RV trailers.

The type of ball mount you put in the receiver for trailer-towing has more choices, e.g. weight-distributing (WD) or not, adjustable height, whether it has a a bracket for a friction sway control, the type of WD bar mounts, etc. Those decisions are mostly driven by the size of the trailer and style of the WD if you use that. A subject unto itself, I think.
 

Seon

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 30, 2011
Posts
402
Location
Lake Camanche, CA
Thx Gary.  A cl IV is probably an over kill for my 6k TT but heck, cl III and IV prices are about the same.
As mentioned, I'll call e-trailer on Monday and order those parts I mentioned.
 

phil-t

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 10, 2017
Posts
1,143
Location
Ogdensburg, NY
Seon said:
Will call e-trailer on Monday, thx.

Another question, is your conversion van registered as a commercial or RV, or passenger vehicle?
Registration type might be determined by the state you register in.  In NY, my motorhome is registered as a "passenger vehicle".  Not sure if that is determined by NY with some kind of documentation or not.
Your best bet would be to call your state's DMV, find out what options there might be and go from there.
 

Seon

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 30, 2011
Posts
402
Location
Lake Camanche, CA
Thx Phil-T.  I planned on calling DMV tomorrow.  In CA most all window passenger vans are registered as Private vehicle and not commercial.  This that I just bought has Commercial plates and in the title, why (?) I don't know.
I'll request to have it changed when I register it.

Fishing boat and camp trailer are parked in the barn and on hold till Spring so converting this van will keep me busy and not get bored  :) .
 

Mr C

Member
Joined
Mar 19, 2020
Posts
9
As mentioned above, Etrailer has good info as well as some great videos.
I followed thier vidioes to wire my brake controller and new 7 pin plug.
 

Seon

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 30, 2011
Posts
402
Location
Lake Camanche, CA
I was able to wire and install front and rear camera, also running side boards.  Still waiting for trailer hitch due to arrive by next week.
Here's a pic of my 2010 e350.  I still need to find a buyer for the near new wheel chair lift before removing.

 

Attachments

  • IMG_4206.jpg
    IMG_4206.jpg
    143.3 KB · Views: 28
  • IMG_4204.jpg
    IMG_4204.jpg
    94.9 KB · Views: 31

Ex-Calif

Well-known member
Joined
May 15, 2020
Posts
1,784
I love this project and vehicle selection - I look forward to more posts as you go through the conversion....

No one ever wanted a smaller hitch... My RV could easily tow 5,000 pounds (we are pretty light empty) but only has a 3500# hitch.

If the vehicle will tow more than 5,000 go with the class 4...

My desired load is a small car and my bike - Calculated weigh in including an aluminum trailer is around 4,000# - grrrrrr.....
 

edjunior

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 12, 2005
Posts
2,605
Location
Roman Forest, TX.
Is that the V8 or V10 in there?  My brother has a 2005 with the 5.4L V8 and he has pulled a medium size cargo trailer from southern Florida to the Rocky Mountains and all points in between.  He's never had an issue with it.  It's been a great van for him, and I know it will be for you also.
 

Seon

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 30, 2011
Posts
402
Location
Lake Camanche, CA
Not a biggie but mounted side steps on yesterday.  An easy install.



 

Attachments

  • IMG_4239.jpg
    IMG_4239.jpg
    95.1 KB · Views: 31
  • IMG_4241.jpg
    IMG_4241.jpg
    112.1 KB · Views: 27

Seon

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 30, 2011
Posts
402
Location
Lake Camanche, CA
I was able to remove the stock rear bench seat (wow was is heavy).

Replaced with a van convertible seat/sofa.

 

Attachments

  • IMG_4247.jpg
    IMG_4247.jpg
    49.7 KB · Views: 33
Top Bottom