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Old 08-18-2014, 12:32 PM
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liftnw8z Bill_SoonerFan
The "tOwBS" - Redefining Tow Pig Standards (56k warning)

Well, suppose it's time we kick this off.

A couple weeks ago, you all know I bought my first diesel. 1996 F350, XLT CCLB 4x4 with the 7.3L. Yes, if you must know it came from out east where the other two came from...lol. A few other stats:

- Mileage: 266,5xx now (a few ticks under that when I got it right before Carlisle Truck).
- Already has the 3" downpipe and a 4" exhaust, no muffler.
- Still rolls on the 16" Alcoas (for now).
- Almost all factory aside from an aftermarket single-disc AM/FM stereo inside. Front seat was replaced after a minor accident that broke the seat back. I am going to try to repair it, when I have time, or go for a different setup (more in another post).
- Twin fuel tanks with switching between. Rear tank needs a pick-up tube fix, and we'll get there, just a matter of coordinating schedules and doing the work.

Pretty solid body. The bed was replaced at some point, and had a stack hole cut in by a previous owner, but we repaired that with a piece of bed flooring and some screws. The right front fender has a little bit of bubble in it and the driver's side rear cab door is a little orange in spots, but nothing that can't be cleaned up and addressed before winter.

Underside is really clean - and since it'll get run in the winter for now it'll get a good Fluid Film treatment or something (I have more than enough laying around for this) to keep rust at bay.

So why did Bill go buy a diesel, and especially a crew cab long bed (CCLB)? Really because it's something I can put to good use. I have been looking for an OBS 7.3L truck for a while now, and of available trucks for sale that fit my budget and features, this truck came the closest.

Most of you get that the Bull is phasing more and more into a show toy these days. It gets its share of work, but it's the pleasure cruiser. This truck will truly be the workhorse. There are projects at my house needing done (retaining walls, anyone?) that I need to haul material for that I would prefer to NOT do in the Bull (especially given its current bed state...floor's really weak).

Plus, throw in the fact that I need something to tow with. Shows at Bloomsburg, Indianapolis, and Lima (OH) are so much easier when you can roll the show truck in and have something else available to run around in. I personally feel a LOT more confident towing with something this size as well.

More in the next post.
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'98 F150 4x4 5.4L "Brahma Bull Edition" <--- Build Thread
'96 F350 CCLB 4x4, 7.3L "The tOwBS" <--- Build Thread
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Old 08-18-2014, 12:36 PM
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liftnw8z Bill_SoonerFan
Here's a few shots of the new rig.

Click the image to open in full size.

The right front fender issue I mentioned...

Click the image to open in full size.

Yes, I know it's a different color - we're working on that

Click the image to open in full size.

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Aluminum is still in good shape - but I'm torn if I want to keep it or go to a smooth PTM tailgate...decisions, decisions...

Click the image to open in full size.

I'll be keeping these...

Click the image to open in full size.

Already has the revised exhaust setup, as mentioned.

Click the image to open in full size.
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'98 F150 4x4 5.4L "Brahma Bull Edition" <--- Build Thread
'96 F350 CCLB 4x4, 7.3L "The tOwBS" <--- Build Thread
'98 Expy EB

2015 Show Schedule will support #22NeedsAFace
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  #3  
Old 08-18-2014, 12:39 PM
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liftnw8z Bill_SoonerFan
Like everything else, I dive in head first and start tinkering. I leave nothing alone for too awful long.

Clay at Riffraff Diesel and I are going to become good friends, I think. I've already spent some money with him and went out and bought a 6637 kit. I don't have pictures of the actual install process, but it's really pretty straightforward. Pull the hose clamp to the old intake box, remove said old intake box, clamp on a short piece of 4" pipe (with a 45* bend in it) and the 6637 filter, and awayyy we go. Here's the finished install pic and the box it replaced.

Click the image to open in full size.



Seems to breathe a bit better, if you ask me.
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'98 F150 4x4 5.4L "Brahma Bull Edition" <--- Build Thread
'96 F350 CCLB 4x4, 7.3L "The tOwBS" <--- Build Thread
'98 Expy EB

2015 Show Schedule will support #22NeedsAFace
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Old 08-18-2014, 12:42 PM
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liftnw8z Bill_SoonerFan
And just when you thought I'd focus on Indy for a bit...lol. Here's another minor change, already. New cab lights.

These came from Complete Performance in Texas. Smoked lenses and bases. They look pretty cool as is, but I decided to go one step further and paint-to-match the bases on recommendation from a couple folks. Duplicolor to the rescue.

Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.



Here's a finished install pic. Looks pretty good. I am going to go get LED's for them yet though.

Click the image to open in full size.



I think my next lighting change will be to get the matching headlight setup from CP. Still debating that "black chrome" grille and trim to go with it. I'll explain why it's a debate in the next post.
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'98 F150 4x4 5.4L "Brahma Bull Edition" <--- Build Thread
'96 F350 CCLB 4x4, 7.3L "The tOwBS" <--- Build Thread
'98 Expy EB

2015 Show Schedule will support #22NeedsAFace
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Old 08-18-2014, 12:56 PM
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liftnw8z Bill_SoonerFan
Stuff on my list, as of now but always subject to change:

- I have a roll of precut window tint to install (the windows are that lightly shaded clear, and I want to change that especially with my light sensitivity issues from a past medication I was on).

- I am looking at a SuperDuty spring conversion. Reverse shackles up front with "U" code springs, and "B" code rear leafs with...well...

I was originally going to go with just a straight 5" block and call it done. But there's been some lengthy discussion regarding the use of ladder bars on this truck in other places (Facebook, primarily) when I do this conversion. Listening to experience and logic says I should do this. So, when I do the 5" block, I plan on doing a One Up Offroad Traction Block. This incorporates both a ladder bar set up and the 5" lift block all into one unit. Much more stable, made in USA (which is important to me), and while the price is higher should be well worth the investment long term.

- Step bars are coming at some point. I believe these will be a custom-fabbed item, not an off the shelf item. Hard to find what I want for an 18-year old truck, so I'll work with some folks to get them built.

- E-Fuel is getting a lot of looks from me. I know some guys who run it have told me how much better they like it than the standard '96 fueling setup. Let me get past the Indianapolis show with the Bull and this may get serious review before anything else.

- I am openly searching for a 40/20/40 front seat. I just happen to like the look, myself. We'll see how that goes, as I hear they're hard to find in good condition.

I have a vision that goes beyond just these things though. It's that whole "redefining tow pig standards" thing. I see a lot of guys who tow their stuff in to shows on something about a step or so higher than junk - and I refuse to do that. I've got a standard to uphold, and I plan to do that.

So as always, stay tuned for more.
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'98 F150 4x4 5.4L "Brahma Bull Edition" <--- Build Thread
'96 F350 CCLB 4x4, 7.3L "The tOwBS" <--- Build Thread
'98 Expy EB

2015 Show Schedule will support #22NeedsAFace
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  #6  
Old 08-18-2014, 04:01 PM
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Nice beginning Bill
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Old 08-19-2014, 03:36 AM
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Good setup.
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Old 08-19-2014, 10:51 AM
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I was looking for something exactly like that, seating for 4+, cargo capacity, big, except I wanted a gas big block - I do not do enough yearly miles to justify the yearly drama of a diesel to let it sit...hence the Suburban. At the time there were no rust free fords on the right side, and no reasonable priced ones on the left side....

My goal was to be able to hook up to a trailer, test the lights, test the brakes, proceed....looks like you met that goal.
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Old 08-19-2014, 12:17 PM
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I'm single, no kids, no girlfriend, so a CCLB is more truck than I truly NEED in some regards. That said, it's always nice to have the passenger capacity "just in case," and actually I've really gotten adjusted to driving this around to a point where it doesn't feel all that imposing to drive.

As for the "let it sit" thing - well, this is as efficient as my Expedition...so...chances are it's not going to sit all that much. Besides, I like turbo whistle...
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'98 F150 4x4 5.4L "Brahma Bull Edition" <--- Build Thread
'96 F350 CCLB 4x4, 7.3L "The tOwBS" <--- Build Thread
'98 Expy EB

2015 Show Schedule will support #22NeedsAFace
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Old 08-25-2014, 08:22 AM
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Looks like a good start Bill. I figured I'd sign up for this one and watch your progress. I'll keep my eyes peeled for a 40/20/40 in good shape but they are, indeed, hard to find in good condition.
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Old 08-25-2014, 08:25 AM
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Thanks Nate.

I have a lead on one southwest of Pittsburgh - gotta get a hold of the guy. We played phone tag all weekend.
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'98 F150 4x4 5.4L "Brahma Bull Edition" <--- Build Thread
'96 F350 CCLB 4x4, 7.3L "The tOwBS" <--- Build Thread
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2015 Show Schedule will support #22NeedsAFace
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Old 08-25-2014, 05:38 PM
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Nice truck Bill
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Old 08-29-2014, 01:04 PM
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Thanks Kevin. Got a lot I plan to do ahead of RRE 2015, so once I get through the Indianapolis event with my 1/2 ton, it'll be time to go to work.
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'98 F150 4x4 5.4L "Brahma Bull Edition" <--- Build Thread
'96 F350 CCLB 4x4, 7.3L "The tOwBS" <--- Build Thread
'98 Expy EB

2015 Show Schedule will support #22NeedsAFace
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Old 10-09-2014, 07:31 PM
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Anxiously awaiting more......
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Old 10-09-2014, 07:52 PM
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Lol as am I. Hoping to start collecting SD spring swap parts this weekend
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'98 F150 4x4 5.4L "Brahma Bull Edition" <--- Build Thread
'96 F350 CCLB 4x4, 7.3L "The tOwBS" <--- Build Thread
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2015 Show Schedule will support #22NeedsAFace
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Old 10-09-2014, 07:52 PM
 
 
 
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