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1957 - 1960 F100 & Larger F-Series Trucks Discuss the Box Style Ford Trucks

     
Old 11-03-2014, 09:45 PM
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  #1  
Old 12-02-2011, 11:09 PM
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Kyle Brazier
FINALLY!!! I got the Crown Vic front suspension!

Well I've been looking for a 2003-2007 crown victoria front suspension for my 1958 F-100 since I read about how "simple" the swap actually is. Today I FINALLY got it. It came out of a 2003 Police Interceptor and I only paid $375 for everything (even all the bolts). Which is cheap compared to the popular Mustang II front suspension ($2500-$3000). I am so excited to start this swap. I am going to start this swap as soon as the semester is over. I just thought I would let ya'll know so you can check in periodically to see how it's going. I'll be taking plenty of pictures and hopefully updating the process daily. For sure weekly. Tomorrow I plan to clean it up and maybe get it nice and shiny
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Old 12-03-2011, 04:27 AM
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elgemcdlf elgemcdlf is offline
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For a suspension swap it's a piece of cake. If you don't have them you might want to go back and get the spacers out of the CV frame. If you are interested, Eaton Detroit has 1" & 1 1/2" drop springs for that suspension. Mine ran me just over $200 (like $215) which included shipping. I did the 1 1/2".

Now you want to know the inexpensive rear swap? MN12 IRS. They put them under '89-'97 TBirds, Cougars & Mark VIIIs. You can find them with discs without much problem at all. The Lincoln units had alum housings as well. Stir in the mount kit from Team321 LLC Ford Truck Independent Rear Suspension (321)960-5945 dheld@cfl.rr.com and you have an IRS under your truck for less than $1000. Yields roughly a 5" drop.

Click the image to open in full size.

Good luck with your swap & if you have any questions feel free to hollar. There are a bunch of us bump guys who have done this swap. You should be able to do the swap in a weekend in a home garage with a welder.

Something I thought about after making this post. I didn't do this and am pulling my steering shaft back out to do it. Just a safety move. Crossdrill all your connections and run bolts through them. If the one of the welds break or a set screw works loose you lose all your steering as it will simply slide off the end of the column.

Last edited by elgemcdlf; 12-03-2011 at 08:58 PM. Reason: Additional Thoughts
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Old 12-03-2011, 09:34 PM
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Kyle Brazier
Thanks! I got it all cleaned up today with some industrial strength degreaser and a paintbrush. It cleans up pretty nicely. I've been researching this swap for quite some time now. I even read all of your posts I believe. I'm not worried about getting it bolted in, I'm more worried about figuring out the brakes and power steering. I already have a booster and master cylinder from a Town Car, and I have a power steering pump from a 1979 Cougar. I have a few questions. First of all what spacers are you talking about? is it spacers between the frame and the crossmember? Second is boxing the frame necessary because I noticed the CV frame isn't boxed, but their frame may be stronger. Third, How hard is it to figure out the power brakes and power steering? Thank you for your support.
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Old 12-03-2011, 10:01 PM
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Power steering is straight forward. Just hook up the rack to a pump. My truck had pwr steering so I had the pump already there. I took the lower (rack) portion and the upper (pump) section to a local hydraulic shop. They built me my pressure line for under $20. I have yet to hear of anyone who sets up the variable rate steering. That is the electric solenoid on the rack. Steering works just fine without it being connected.

Brakes: once again I had pwr disc brakes on my truck prior to disassembly so everything was already in place for me. All I needed to connect them was adapters that allow connecting the 3/16 line to the metric hoses of the CV.

Boxing the frame: Trucks have frames that are designed to twist. The CV frame is designed to be as solid as possible & the CV my IFS came out of was boxed back to the firewall. The extra movement of the rails may prove detremental to you in the future since the IFS was designed to be connected to a rigid frame.

Spacers: There are 4 spacers that the main mounting bolts go through when passing through the frame. They are welded to the top rail of the CV frame only so they are easy to remove. I cleaned mine up and cut them off to put between my rails. In the CV the top of this spacer is threaded. The mounting bolt screws into it. Then the shock tower support goes on top of that with nuts. Once you cut the spacers for the inside of the rails the remaining portion you can use above the rail. This gives you mounting as intended by Ford along with exact spacing designed by Ford between the bottom of the frame rail and the bottom of the shock tower supports.

You definitely want spacers inside your rails. There is a strong possibility the rails will pinch and the mounting bolts work loose over time. They add support as intended for the mounting point. Clear as mud yet?

You are going to love how your truck drives when you are finished.
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Old 12-03-2011, 10:03 PM
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Kyle Brazier
This is the CV Front suspension before I cleaned it.
[IMG]Click the image to open in full size.[/IMG]
Click the image to open in full size.
And here are the wheels I got for it to get me by. They were $25 a piece at the local pull-a-part. Not too shabby.
[IMG]Click the image to open in full size.[/IMG]
[IMG]Click the image to open in full size.[/IMG]
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Old 12-03-2011, 10:15 PM
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Go back and get the lower portion of the steering shaft. It has a unique joint that will allow you to run a universal joint up above with no pillow block involved. No binding. Next on the list you might as well order both your brake hoses now. They will run you in the $30 each range. It's a shame they cut them. You do have both of the lower portions of the PS lines which is great. Wheels look great for "hold the truck up wheels".

I cut my alignment pins off in my IFS. They serve you no purpose. They are for robotic install. The holes are in the CV and running the IFS against the car the pins just have to be close and they will run into the holes aligning the IFS to the car. You have no holes in your rails for these to align to and any holes you put in for them to align to you can align to without the pins or holes.

I can't wait to hear your thoughts when you first drive it. You will have to relearn how to drive your truck. An old truck just shouldn't handle even half as good.
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Old 12-03-2011, 10:19 PM
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Kyle Brazier
Okay that makes sense. I was trying to figure out what I was going to do about spacing. I will definitely go back and get those. If the frame was boxed how did you get the spacers out? I'm just trying to get all the small things ironed out before they become a big problem.
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Old 12-03-2011, 10:24 PM
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Kyle Brazier
Oh I don't know if you can see it or not but that clear bag in front of the susp has that steering shaft in it along with all the bolts. When I told the guy I wanted all the bolts that came off of it he kinda looked at me strange but I'm glad he saved them.
One other question. Did you fabricate your own mounts to put the motor onto the CV cross member? I was already planning on doing this but if there is some mount that will readily work I will go that route. I have a 351 W in the truck.
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Old 12-04-2011, 04:07 AM
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I see the bag but can not see what's in it. The spacers in the CV are only welded in the top of the CV frame. Just cut a small circle around the spacer and out it will come. I have a W in my truck. I am replacing it with a 460. In any case I am assuming your motor mounts come from only the frame since you have a straight axle. They should be fine. If I am incorrect post pics and we will go from there.
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Old 12-04-2011, 02:49 PM
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Kyle Brazier
Here it is after I cleaned it up.

[IMG]Click the image to open in full size.[/IMG]
[IMG]Click the image to open in full size.[/IMG]

Notice the $25 wheels.

[IMG]Click the image to open in full size.[/IMG][IMG]Click the image to open in full size.[/IMG]
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Old 12-04-2011, 02:56 PM
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Kyle Brazier
I read your buildup thread and I noticed you said the ride was rough until you put the lowering springs in it. Is this because the front of a CV is heavier than our truck's front end? Also I'm wanting to use the original steering column that's in my truck now. Did you do this and if so how did you connect the truck's steering shaft with the CV steering shaft? And what about your IRS. I was just looking at that pic and it got me curious; how hard is it to install compared to the CV IFS? and how does the frame widths compare between the Lincoln Mark and the trucks?
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Old 12-04-2011, 04:16 PM
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I believe the police cars had a stiffer suspension (mine came from a PI) which was part of the rough ride. I believe another contributing factor is at that point the frame was not boxed. It still isn't but I do have the steel. I believe the frame itself was absorbing a good portion of road shock not allowing the coils to do the work by themselves. I am running a W engine (302) which I believe is also part of the issue. I have a 460/C6 that I am putting in just after the 1st of the year.

If I am not mistaken your steering column is a solid shaft going all the way down into the box. The Twin I Beam trucks has separate columns and boxes that used rag joints. The column in my truck is a '78/'79 tilt from a pickup. If I were you that is what I would search out or if tilt is no big deal a newer column from '65 and up to '79. This will give you a 36 spline 3/4" shaft out the bottom. From there it is just a matter of a u joint and a short shaft to connect it to the rack. I will post a few pics.

The cars the IRS came in are unibodies. Your frame is the same width as mine (34"). The mount kit from Team321 LLC Ford Truck Independent Rear Suspension (321)960-5945 dheld@cfl.rr.com make the install a breeze. Here is the link to my IRS install thread.

F100 IRS install - Truck Forums at Truckin Magazine Magazine

Dave has the installation process on his site as well. He walks through a '53-'56 but the process is the same. The worst part about doing the rear is deciding to start actually welding instead of tacking. You know the point of no turning back. Just like drilling the first hole when you do the front. Once you get past that point it gets much easier.

If I were in your shoes I think I would concentrate on the bump section and mimick what we do. Example being the steering column issue. Some of the ways your truck is built would be best just taken out and upgraded just like you are doing with the IFS.

Here are some pics of the steering shaft I did. The only thing I would do different and I am going to do it with mine is crossdrill all the joints & put bolts in them as a safety matter. If a weld breaks you will lose all your steering.

Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.

I have some more pics that I will look for. There are several methods for mounting your engine. I think one of the cleanest I have seen uses the stalks on the CV crossmember. He used a piece of 2x2 to extend the stalk upward and built from there.
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Old 12-04-2011, 09:07 PM
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Hello Fast58, I've just read through your thread and elgemcdlf has really given you a lot of good info, but I thought I'd throw my 2 cents worth in. I've just done a CV swap on my '57 F100 panel. The frame on our early trucks is different than the twin I beam trucks in that the bottom of the rail where the CV mounts isn't flat. I leveled the top then cut across the bottom of the frame and along the bottom bend so I could move it up to be level. (I'm not good at explaining this) I then rewelded it and reinforced it with a bottom section off another frame rail. I'm also running a 351 W in mine and had to use the rear sump pan from a newer truck, but also had to dimple the firewall for the driver's side head to clear. I installed my front end with the centerline of the spindles the same as the original straight axle. If I was to do it over, I would move the CV forward 1" as it would really help with pan and firewall clearance. It really is an easy swap as far as front suspension swaps are concerned. Good Luck!!!
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Old 12-05-2011, 12:31 AM
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Kyle Brazier
Thank you for the information. As for the steering column, I am really wanting to keep the original column. My goal is to have a truck that looks like a 1958 F-100 inside and out but under the hood and frame I want it to perform at top level. Kinda a hybrid type build I guess. I want the best of both worlds. I was wondering if it would be too terribly hard to cut the original steering column and weld a shaft with a u-joint on it to connect it with the CV steering shaft. And rcjccobra are you saying that you had to cut the bottom of the frame off and re weld a flatter piece in so the CV IFS would sit flush? And I have another question for elgemcdlf. Do you notice anything bad about the IRS ride quality and performance? I appreciate ya'll's responses.
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Old 12-05-2011, 08:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fast58 View Post
Thank you for the information. As for the steering column, I am really wanting to keep the original column. My goal is to have a truck that looks like a 1958 F-100 inside and out but under the hood and frame I want it to perform at top level. Kinda a hybrid type build I guess. I want the best of both worlds. I was wondering if it would be too terribly hard to cut the original steering column and weld a shaft with a u-joint on it to connect it with the CV steering shaft. And rcjccobra are you saying that you had to cut the bottom of the frame off and re weld a flatter piece in so the CV IFS would sit flush? And I have another question for elgemcdlf. Do you notice anything bad about the IRS ride quality and performance? I appreciate ya'll's responses.
I have heard of the F1 guys that cut their columns and do as you describe. I would still cross drill it as a safety matter. Without going and looking at what your column looks like there are plenty of non tilt columns available from '65 on that may fit your desire. I do not know where or even if your column has a lower bearing in it which is what you would want as to stabalize the lower end of the shaft.

He is saying just that about the frame. I had forgotten teh straight axle trucks had a curved area above the axle. That needs flattened out to mount the CV crossmember to.

The only negative I can say about the IRS is me. I am accustom to the truck behaving a certain way and it just doesn't with the IRS. With the 9" I could make it fishtail not with the IRS. It will light up the tires but it holds straight. Perhaps with lower gears it would. It is just me getting used to it now. Like I said no old truck should handle the way it does. You get to driving it and then back away because "you just can't corner like that in an old truck" but in reality yes you can. I have said I would probably kill myself in a stock bump. I remember the body roll and slowing down to take a corner. I am growing to "trust" my truck to do way more than any truck. If I tried some of what I do in my truck in a stock one I would most certainly roll it.
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Old 12-05-2011, 08:00 AM
 
 
 
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