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Installing a 51 dually cab

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Old 06-30-2017, 08:52 PM
LittleRiver
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Installing a 51 dually cab

Anyone ever install a 51 big truck dually cab and front end sheet metal on a late model 2004 ford frame or similar. I have 51 with good sheet metal. But its a big long wheel base dually flat bed. That I am thinking about installing on a wrecked 2004 ford f-150 4x4. frame using the complete running gear and etc. Its a 150 XLT with a 5.4 Triton. The frame is straight. Just the 04 sheet metal is bad. Being its a 4x4 I understand it will sit up a little higher then a 1/2 ton pickup. But being my 51 is a big truck with 750X20x35 inch tall tires on it. and the 04 has 35x12.50R20LTs tires that are not as tall. just wider. It should not really be no taller. Also being its a big truck the fender wheel openings are larger the a 1/2 ton so that will help with tire clearance. Now days with the internet. people can find all the wiring diagrams for late models. I guess I thought I would look to see if anyone has done or know of some that's done a similar frame swap. Or maybe has ideas on the subject, and were helpful information can be found. Thanks
 
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Old 07-01-2017, 07:11 AM
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It's not going to work very well. A 2004 F-150 with stock tires measures 79" outside to outside. The front fenders of the 1951 are only 73" wide. The 1951 frame is 32" for the front cab mount and 34" for the rear cab mounts. I know the 2004 F-150 frame is 40" wide under the cab.
 
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Old 07-01-2017, 10:24 AM
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This subject has been discussed hundreds of times here. You are new and have a low number of posts so I'm not sure if you can use the search option. If you can't use Google using www.ford-trucks.com and the term "frame swap" or "chassis swap" and you should find lot of posts. Be forewarned, frame swaps are not favored on this board. Nathan is one who has done a very good job of doing one.
 
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Old 07-01-2017, 08:17 PM
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Thanks Bob and Nathan for your information and advice. I just thought since I have the salvaged 04 That I would do something with it. Beside giving me a better ride on my 51 big truck. Maybe I just need to look for a 1/2 ton frame. We drove the 51 to a show like almost 2 hours away and we were sore when we arrived. Besides the low geared rear. You could not keep up with highway traffic. We don't care about braking speeding records. But it would be nice to go a little faster and smoother. So I take it most guys in this forum are more into original the any type of swaps. To me swaps or improvement's are cool. As long as you keep it in the same family. Like a ford should be a Ford and a Chevy should be a chevy. Not a Ford with a chevy running gear, like most are. Well thanks again , have a Great weekend and 4th. Will most likely post again. Or at least read others post.
 
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Old 07-01-2017, 10:37 PM
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I am a stocker guy, but there are lots of us here that have made or are making updates to their trucks. But what Bob is saying is that frame swaps are very difficult and many times ends up as a stalled project. We lovingly call guys that customize their trucks or do restomod, Darksiders. There are lots of them here and we all get along. But most of them are IFS up front, change to disc brakes, add power brakes and steering, AC, etc.

Keep reading and posting and these guys will help you. BTW, show us pics of your truck.
 
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Old 07-01-2017, 11:02 PM
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Like Abe said, we all pretty much get along with any kind of build, from stock to (gulp), rat rods. Doing a frame swap is discouraged by most here because of the time, skill, money and equipment needed to pull it off.

Nathan has done one of the best frame swaps I've seen, if you can search for his posts, I think he had pictures of his truck. A lot work.

Most guys here usually have a pickup they want upgrade ride and performance and most recommend upgrading their current frame with a modern front suspension and rear axle. A few have used Ranger or S-10 chassis. An F150 frame is too wide unless you can find a pre-'73 frame. The axle width was relatively the same until 1973. But then you have to contend with the hump in the frame.

Your truck I am assuming is either an F-5 or F-6. That's got a pretty heavy double walled frame. That makes it kind of hard to update components. Keep asking questions, there are a lot of talented guys here who have done some amazing things with their trucks of different sizes.
 
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Old 07-01-2017, 11:06 PM
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BTW, check with member drptop70ss he's done some interesting frame swaps.
 
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Old 07-02-2017, 02:06 PM
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I solved the rough ride issue by installing air ride seats. All you need is the air ride base which you can get new or at truck wrecking yards, and a 12v air compressor. In my case I had to buy the whole air ride seat for $35.
 
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Old 07-02-2017, 02:34 PM
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Not all of us are stock 'F' series on here. Mine doesn't even fit the year or model criteria but they still are good to me and help all they can. In my defense I did start with a 49 F3 that I put a Jag front end and a EFI 5.0 Mustang with a T10 5 speed and an F150 (if I remember correctly) rear end and all 4 disk brakes. My current ride is the 38 Studebaker but I say it just hasn't grown up into a truck yet.
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Old 07-02-2017, 11:20 PM
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Hey Little River,
Welcome Aboard! So.... If you have a nice 51 with good sheet metal...
Let's work with that....

Personally I'd upgrade the rear axle to an Explorer 8.8 with 3.73 gearing & disc brakes. Great for cruising at modern highway speeds. We paid $225 at the salvage yard.... it works great.

For the Front End - A very popular swap is a Jag IFS as it's the right width for our trucks. They can be found for under $400.

Your choice on Engine/Trans. We went with a 351W & and AOD with overdrive. It fits nicely & has plenty of power. Anything from the 289/302/351W family will work great.

It's far easier to stick with the original frame & body & just swap in what you need.

Good luck over there.

Ben in Austin
1950 F1 (351W/AOD)
 
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Old 07-02-2017, 11:24 PM
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I pass that race track outside Little River Academy all the time on my way back from Waco.

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Old 07-03-2017, 07:35 AM
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Ben the modifications you mention are somewhat easy with an F-1 or F-2/3 frame but the OP has a large truck with a heavy double walled frame, assuming his is an F-5/6. An F-4 has a single walled frame which makes it slightly lighter. In the bigger trucks there's a lot of steel. He'd be better off finding a smaller 48/52 truck with bad sheet metal and swapping his sheet metal onto that truck and then doing the modifications you mention.

One thing to keep in mind is that F-2 to F-6 trucks share front fenders so if you swap out the sheet metal the fenders will have larger wheel openings than the F-1.
 
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