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Hey everyone- I’ve always loved Ford OBS trucks (specifically quad cab w/ long bed) but I’m just now starting to develop more of an obsession and considering buying one. Been doing lots of research , but I’m new to the community and also haven’t owned a diesel before, so looking for some advice on what to ask and what to watch out for when viewing/buying. Blow by, steering components, injectors, etc. Looking for common issues to be aware of.
 

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Hey everyone- I’ve always loved Ford OBS trucks (specifically quad cab w/ long bed) but I’m just now starting to develop more of an obsession and considering buying one. Been doing lots of research , but I’m new to the community and also haven’t owned a diesel before, so looking for some advice on what to ask and what to watch out for when viewing/buying. Blow by, steering components, injectors, etc. Looking for common issues to be aware of.
Nate .... Thats a tough set of qualifiers, the most important is " haven't owned a diesel before ". If you have hobby money and retirement time no problem finding a place for it with a used diesel. If I were buying another truck I would look for a 7.3L PSD 2001 to 2003, a Goldilocks condition one, and expect to pay a premium. Then, have it professionally inspected by someone that knows and maybe avoid the pitfalls you note. In the end its just a machine made up of major and minor repairable or replaceable systems, one wants the best one for the money as a starter, or they will have the opportunity to be inundated with issues that can just suck the fun out of ownership for a new to diesels owner.
 
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I agree when looking at older anything. Money way a head to get one that is in very good condition. But OSB will be over 20 years old. PSD will be near it. I have two 7.3s my OSB 96 bout at 150kish now near 200k. Did have to replace the trans after about three years lots of towing up 12%. New trans is like NIGHT and day. as well did the 6.0 cooler mod. Wifes 2003 7.3 Excusion 4x4 limited is at now 270k but its here baby and there is no amount of money she would not put in it. Super clean and many mods. 35s with 4.30 gears. Finding that truck took over a year. Me its about rust more then if the 7.3 is worn out. you can get a reman for not all that much. New a SUV near its ability and they dont make nothing like that any more would be a $100,000 vehicle today. Unless you know about these and plan to do all the work better find a GOOD mechanic that knows 7.3s. Two things in life, a good wife and a good mechanic. The latter is harder to find ;)
 

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Nate .... Thats a tough set of qualifiers, the most important is " haven't owned a diesel before ". If you have hobby money and retirement time no problem finding a place for it with a used diesel. If I were buying another truck I would look for a 7.3L PSD 2001 to 2003, a Goldilocks condition one, and expect to pay a premium. Then, have it professionally inspected by someone that knows and maybe avoid the pitfalls you note. In the end its just a machine made up of major and minor repairable or replaceable systems, one wants the best one for the money as a starter, or they will have the opportunity to be inundated with issues that can just suck the fun out of ownership for a new to diesels owner.
Thanks for your response! Don't have a lot of extra cash and not retired, but it seems like there are some decent '94.5-97's out there for around $15-$18k (around 200k miles or so). I would obviously still expect to put some work into it over time, but that's part of the desire- somewhat picking up/learning a new hobby. A good buddy of mine is a diesel mechanic as well, so that would certainly help. Thanks again for your help and input!
 

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I would add a good barber and a good accountant to the list.

In the price range of $15k-$18K, you should be able to find a nice OBS. As mentioned above, I would place rust at the top list of things to look out for. Look for trucks in or from Eastern WA, WY, CO, AZ.
You should be able to find one that was an RV puller for a retired couple.

As also mentioned, keep some of your powder dry for a replacement transmission.

I keep an eye on the local market out here and even the survivors who were not abused as a work truck are being purchased by Landscapers who mistreat them.

If you get serious about buying, and don’t mind flying to get it then let me know what you are looking for.

The only thing I might add is to not rely on just any shop to give you the inspection. Find a shop that specializes in these 7.3 vintages.
 
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I would add a good barber and a good accountant to the list.

In the price range of $15k-$18K, you should be able to find a nice OBS. As mentioned above, I would place rust at the top list of things to look out for. Look for trucks in or from Eastern WA, WY, CO, AZ.
You should be able to find one that was an RV puller for a retired couple.

As also mentioned, keep some of your powder dry for a replacement transmission.

I keep an eye on the local market out here and even the survivors who were not abused as a work truck are being purchased by Landscapers who mistreat them.

If you get serious about buying, and don’t mind flying to get it then let me know what you are looking for.

The only thing I might add is to not rely on just any shop to give you the inspection. Find a shop that specializes in these 7.3 vintages.
Thanks for responding! Been keeping an eye out all over the country on Auto Trader, Offer Up, Craig’s List and Diesel Sellerz. A couple have been tempting but not tempting enough to travel across the country for. Specifically looking for a 1997 F350 crew cab 4x4. Found a decent one in Texas for $13k, but the interior was pretty rough. Said he would come down to $11.5k. We’ll see... if it was local here in AZ I would do it in a heart beat, just not sure I want to travel 20 hours for it. Anyway, cheers to the hunt.
 

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Have you checked FB MarketPlace? That's where I found mine.
 
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