Chinook RV Forum

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PostPosted: April 10th, 2016, 4:02 pm 
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Joined: October 20th, 2015, 6:57 am
Posts: 526
Location: Northern NJ
Couple of notes:

1. If buying from Find It Parts, be sure to clear your cookies and come in clean, so you get that "new user sign-up" for a chance at a 10% discount on your first order.

For a $600 order, saving $60 is really sweet.

I bought my mirrors from them, and I think I actually got a 20% discount at the time by signing up for email ads from them.

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2. Ford VIN decoder. Here's how it works out, for the Ford Chinooks, with two examples. The only difference between the older Fords and the newer Fords (besides the year code) are characters #4 through #8 (air bag flag, E350 designator, and engine code).

-----------------------------------------------------------------
1992 onward with V-8. Example: 1FDKE30G7PHA00001 = 1993 chassis Chinook

1FD = Ford
K = 10,000 GVW, no air bags
E30 = E350 chassis
G = 460 engine
7 = check digit or X
P = 1993 model year
H = assembly plant Lorain OH
A00001 = serial number (starts with A, then rolls over to B later in year)

-----------------------------------------------------------------
1997 onward with V-10. Example: 1FDWE35SXYHB00001 = 2000 chassis Chinook

1FD = Ford
W = 10,000 GVW, air bags
E35 = E350 chassis
S = 6.8L V10 engine
X = check digit or X
Y = 2000 model year
H = assembly plant
B00001 = serial number (obviously later in year since starts with B)

-----------------------------------------------------------------
Model Years:
K = 1989
L = 1990
M = 1991
N = 1992
P = 1993
R = 1994
S = 1995
T = 1996
V = 1997
W = 1998
X = 1999
Y = 2000

1 = 2001
2 = 2002
3 = 2003
4 = 2004
5 = 2005
...
A = 2010

Whenever I see a Ford Chinook ad with a VIN, my eye goes straight to the chassis year code, just before the HA### or HB### ending serial.

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PostPosted: April 10th, 2016, 6:21 pm 
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Location: 1999 Concourse
So I'm now curious about something. You have the 1992-1996 code showing "no air bags." But the "normal" vans got a driver's side airbag in 1992, and continued it through 1996; then in 1997 a passenger airbag was added. But were the cutaways different such that 1992-1996 had NO air bags?

Interestingly, a friend of mine bought a (I forget now but either 2000 or 2001) Chevy cutaway RV similar to a Chinook (but not a Chinook) and it had no airbags. After researching it turned out that while the vans had at least one standard by then (if not two); it was an "option" on the cutaway. But I didn't know Ford was like that as well (if it is?).

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PostPosted: April 10th, 2016, 6:32 pm 
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Location: Northern NJ
Yes, you're exactly right.

Btw, it took me a while to find a truck VIN code chart for heavy duty fleet and cutaway vehicles. The same code letters can have very different meanings depending on the GVW range.

I now seem to have mislaid that fleet chart, but not before I was able to study it and check against many Chinook VINs online.

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Last edited by kdarling on April 10th, 2016, 6:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: April 10th, 2016, 6:33 pm 
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Location: 1999 Concourse
Wait, I'm right which way? That the cutaways from 1992-1996 always had no air bags, even though the regular vans did have a driver one? Or that the cutaways did have a driver one? Or that the driver one was optional on the cutaways so some had it and some didn't...

Thanks for clarifying.

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PostPosted: April 10th, 2016, 6:39 pm 
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Location: Northern NJ
oh, sorry!

I believe that you're right that the 1992-96 cutaways, or at least the ones used by Chinook, didn't come with an airbag at all.

Besides the VIN flag, it's confirmed from looking at all the older Chinook dash photos. The steering wheel with the air bag was a different shape (more rectangular middle to hold the bag) than what you'll see in older Chinook pics.

Hmm. Even though normal vans could have one, I can't recall if it was even an option on these partial vehicles. I'll have to find that chart again!

Kev

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