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2.7 Ecoboost RCI Skidplate Install Question

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Old 01-13-2018, 02:38 AM   #1
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Default 2.7 Ecoboost RCI Skidplate Install Questions

I did a quick search on here in regards to installing the RCI skid plates on my 2016 SCREW 2.7 ecoboost. This could pertain to the 3.5 Ecoboost as well. I would think the undercarriage, in regards to the RCI Skid plates, would be the same.

I got some questions answered from some other peoples posts/pictures on how the front skid plate brackets install. The instructions don't mention anything about the OEM intercooler support bracket and the pictures are in black and white and grainy. The instructions say to "remove the air dam, and install driver and passenger side mounting brackets." And "you will reuse the existing bolt at the front and install supplied speed clip and bolt for the rear of the bracket." Besides the air dam thing not making any sense (what air dam??), if the bracket installs like I've seen pictured in other peoples posts, there is no existing front bolt. The front bolt is the one you install with the speed clip. The rear bolt is the one you reuse after you slip the RCI bracket under the intercooler bracket, right? (See picture)


A view from the driver's side underneath with the front of the truck on the left. What I believe to be the driver's side bracket oriented the way I think it should go underneath the intercooler cross brace.



Which leads me to my main questions: Anyone have any weld bubbles/drips on the frame where these front brackets would bolt against? (see picture)





These weld lumps/slag are on both sides of the truck. These lumps are big enough to keep the RCI brackets from sitting flat against the mounting surface, not to mention, I think they'll interfere with the speed clips that need to be slipped in. These brackets are pretty dam thick, they are not just going to bend and mold around these weld lumps when bolted in place.

Anyone else have to whip out a grinder or file to knock these down? Then just spray paint over the bare steel?

...Anyone know OEM or RCI recommend torque specs for these mounting bolts? Are there different torque specs depending on which plate is being
installed?

Last edited by CeeDee; 01-13-2018 at 08:38 PM. Reason: Spelling and clarification
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Old 01-13-2018, 10:20 AM   #2
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A little google-fu and I think I'm more confused than you are now. It says reuse the existing bolt at the front? In your pics it's hard to tell orientation, but on RCI's website they show the plate fully installed and orientation is a bit clearer. This looks like it would be the rear bolt. Or do they supply a new longer one to compensate for the thickness? I think what I'm seeing is the same bracket. Does this image help?


Last edited by TheGeek; 01-13-2018 at 10:22 AM.
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Old 01-13-2018, 12:06 PM   #3
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I heard they made a change to the front plate to make it easier to remove for maintenance. That does look way easier than the old design they had. Reinstalling the bolts at the bottom of the intercooler was a pain to get everything lined back up while holding the skid up.

Old design:
2.7 Ecoboost RCI Skidplate Install Question-photo126.jpg
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Old 01-13-2018, 08:54 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by TheGeek View Post
A little google-fu and I think I'm more confused than you are now. It says reuse the existing bolt at the front? In your pics it's hard to tell orientation, but on RCI's website they show the plate fully installed and orientation is a bit clearer. This looks like it would be the rear bolt. Or do they supply a new longer one to compensate for the thickness? I think what I'm seeing is the same bracket. Does this image help?
The image does help. That is one of the same images I found on the RCI website, along with some other peoples posts, on how this bracket would go. It's just the instructions are conflicting. It will be the rear bolt that I would be actually reusing, not the front, as the instructions state. I wish I had a scanner so I could show you the discrepancy. They also make no mention of a longer bolt to be used to compensate for the thickness. The provided bolts are all the same size. Other people have posted that they are instructed by RCI that they can use the OEM bolts if they want.


I'm pretty sure I got the orientation down now. I'll have to crawl back under and just give it another shot. I'm not totally sure on the spot weld bumps though. I really thought this would bolt perfectly up under the truck with no modifications. But, those bumps won't let the bracket sit flat against the cross member. And that's cross-member steal! Not easy stuff to grind down without the right tools.


Since no one has chimed in on any torque ratings for these bolts...
I guess G-n-T (Good-n-Tight) will have to do
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Old 01-13-2018, 08:59 PM   #5
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I heard they made a change to the front plate to make it easier to remove for maintenance. That does look way easier than the old design they had. Reinstalling the bolts at the bottom of the intercooler was a pain to get everything lined back up while holding the skid up.
I see. That does look to be a little bit of a pain if you need to remove the front portion for whatever reason. I removed the inter-cooler cross brace on my first attempt at this install and the inter-cooler definitely wants to move around and come at ya. But, even with the older design you shouldn't need to remove this portion of the skid plate hardly ever, if at all.

Did you just torque all the bolts for your skid plates G-n-T (Good-n-Tight), with no actual torque specs?
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Old 01-13-2018, 11:07 PM   #6
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I had to grind off the imperfection (the one you show) to install the special clip, not a big deal. I just G-n-T on all the bolts. I reused 99% of the factory bolts when I installed the RCI skid plates since my truck came with so called factory skid plates (FX package). I did not purchase the gas tank skid plate so I can not comment on that installation. As far as removing them for oil changes or what ever, it's only a 5-10 min job. I use a 3/8" air impact, so not an issue.

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Old 01-14-2018, 01:24 AM   #7
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I had to grind off the imperfection (the one you show) to install the special clip, not a big deal. I just G-n-T on all the bolts. I reused 99% of the factory bolts when I installed the RCI skid plates since my truck came with so called factory skid plates (FX package). I did not purchase the gas tank skid plate so I can not comment on that installation. As far as removing them for oil changes or what ever, it's only a 5-10 min job. I use a 3/8" air impact, so not an issue.
I decided on just installing the clips and installing the brackets without messing with grinding off steel and paint. I didn't have any spray paint to protect the steel if I did grind it down and I already removed all the OEM diapers. I don't want to risk unnecessary rust and I wanted this done tonight. The clips are pretty robust and thick that the brackets don't really sit flat anyways until you tighten everything down. I used a lot of the factory stuff too. I ended up with a handful of extra bolts and clips.


Contemplating if I should've replaced all the factory clips and bolts so I didn't have any extra new hardware.



The factory bolts stick out quite a bit as you can see from the picture. They look like nipples that might be more prone to grabbing and getting snagged on stuff. I don't know. But, I don't plan on doing any major off-roading either. Anything that used the existing OEM threaded clips, I used the factory bolts with them since they were "fitted" for each other already.


OEM bolts used stick out a bit.

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Old 01-14-2018, 01:34 AM   #8
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Oh... to share and add to this forum of knowledge. I figured out the front bracket deal, obviously. The speed/steel clips you have to install (one on each side) were a bit of a challenge to get in place. A big flat blade screw driver helped to leverage them in place.





This transfer case plate took some analyzing of pictures to figure how this went in. And I'm still not 100% sure I got it installed right. The instructions, again, were not very clear. And dependent on which picture you look at, it may not help you at all. I even ended up with an extra allen bolt for some reason. The picture TheGeek posted (post#2) above obviously shows something different going on back there with the bracket.


I wonder what the extra hole is for on the skid plate? I think they could've supplied a thicker/stronger fender washer for the allen bolt. It bent real easy once tightened down

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Old 01-14-2018, 01:58 AM   #9
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... I did not purchase the gas tank skid plate so I can not comment on that installation. As far as removing them for oil changes or what ever, it's only a 5-10 min job. I use a 3/8" air impact, so not an issue.
I would've bought the gas tank skid plate if it was available for the 23 gallon. Unfortunately, they still don't have one for my gas tank yet. Not that I know of anyways.

Do you still have to remove the skid plate(s) even with the small access hatch meant for getting to the oil plug?

I'm curious if the oil drains properly through that hole or does it splash onto the skid plate, making a mess.
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Old 01-15-2018, 06:55 PM   #10
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Hi guys, just came across this thread and wanted to help out in any way I can...

Sorry for the confusion on the install sheet, this same sheet is shared with the 09-14 trucks which are extremely similar but ever so slightly different (just enough to confuse people if you are analyzing the pictures closely)

MOST trucks have a big plastic shroud (air dam) mounted on the bottom of the frame rails using the forward most mounting hole that our skid plate brackets use. In this instance you would re-use the hardware that was already there after removing that shroud.

In the case of the ecoboost trucks, you are correct that you use the intercooler support hardware at the rear of the brackets and overlap the brackets just like you did.

I would not worry about the weld bump you found on the bottom of the frame since the brackets are not actually sitting against the frame but rather the speed clips. I do not think that the weld there will obstruct those clips from sitting correctly.

We recommend approximatly 40 ft/lbs of torque on the M10 bolts and 20 ft/lbs on the M8 bolts found on the rear skid plates, but in general "goodandtight" will work great provided they don't loosen up and cause the skid plates to rattle.

Let me know if I missed any other questions you have!
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