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1985 lifted diesel dually build

  #1  
Old 07-30-2018, 10:32 AM
Banjo picker1
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1985 lifted diesel dually build

Ive been wanting to do this build for a few years now but between moving from TX to SC, getting a home fixed up, switching jobs, getting married, and having a son it hasnt been a priority. Well this past Saturday I finally pickup a project truck! It is a 1985 F350 diesel! It is missing the bed, rear end, wheels, and transmission, and the engine will need to be rebuilt/replaced but for how little rust it has for this area I just couldnt resist it for $500! (A running one of these full of rust with 350k miles will sell for at least 5-6 grand around here and powerstrokes and Cummins trucks are typically 16-30+ grand.) My dreams for it is to convert it to a 6 speed 4x4, lift it either 6 and use 35 Dick Cepeck extremely country or 8 inches and run 38 Michelin XMLs, and either rebuild and mod the 6.9 or swap in a Cummins. I also scored a nice rear bumper for 20 bucks! I waiting tor hear back from some adds on Craigslist for some axles and am looking at a shackle reversal kit online. Pics coming soon! Id like to see some pics of 1980-1997 crew cab duallies 6 lift and 35s and 8 lift and 38s!
 

Last edited by Banjo picker1; 12-28-2018 at 10:01 AM. Reason: Title change
  #2  
Old 07-30-2018, 10:59 AM
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Even though Ol Red is a gasser, it did great hauling it up and down the mountain roads of SW NC!







 
  #3  
Old 07-30-2018, 02:40 PM
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The cab does look in pretty good shape but look like you still have your work cut out for you.

I think its over in the 73-79 truck area they have a crew cab only section may want to stop in there just to see what they have going on.
I like to hit all the other year truck posts just to see what others are up to, may even barrow some of what they do to use on my truck.
ie: how to paint the FORD letters on the tail gate like the factory did or custom gate latches for flare sides, or even bed side wood extensions that look good and not just 2x4 bolted together.

I will be following this project
Dave ----
 
  #4  
Old 07-30-2018, 07:52 PM
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That is a 2wd frame. It will have to be modified to make it 4x4. The best way for you to go and get some lift at the same time is to put a front shackle reversal kit on the front. Here's a link.
https://www.skysoffroaddesign.com/co...ford-fsrob-002

That will give you 2 inches of lift, and the stock dana 60 front axle and springs give you another 2 inches. So you will need lift springs to go higher than that. I am assuming you have lifted a truck that high before? If you do it all suspension it will require driveshaft modifications. The above kit will make it easier to modify the frame to fit up the leaf springs for the 4x4 front axle.

They did not make a 4x4 dually pickup until 1999 when the super duties came out. I know you see them running around, but they are swapped in from a cab and chassis truck, those are the only dually style front ends that were made for the early trucks. Don't fall into the trap and buy a cab and chassis dually 4x4 and expect to use the rearend also. The cab and chassis had a special frame and special width rearend to accommodate standard utility beds and such. The truck you have is a pickup frame correct? If it is, you will need a dually pickup rearend for it.

If you need a engine, I would lean toward the cummins. The original 6.9 and 7.3 engines are good engines, but they are low on power. They need a turbo to get any power, and they did not come with a turbo till late 1994 for about half a year before the powerstroke came out. All the 6.9's and 7.3 idi's you see running around with turbos are mostly aftermarket. The work well, but they do not have the power potiential that a cummins has.

If you stick with the international engine, I would ditch the 6 speed idea. It does nothing but give you a extra gear in the middle over the 5 speed zf, and it's not a easy swap. And it will also require the 6 speed transfer case. The 5 speed stuff is a bolt in with any early Ford transfer case.

You may want to consider getting axles from a later Ford pickup. While they will have metric wheel patterns, they will also be easier to find and give you rear disc brakes also. Do some searching, the later front axles use coil springs, not sure if it can be retro-fitted to your 2wd coils you have now or not.
 
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Old 07-30-2018, 09:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Franklin2 View Post
If you need a engine, I would lean toward the cummins. The original 6.9 and 7.3 engines are good engines, but they are low on power. They need a turbo to get any power, and they did not come with a turbo till late 1994 for about half a year before the powerstroke came out. All the 6.9's and 7.3 idi's you see running around with turbos are mostly aftermarket. The work well, but they do not have the power potiential that a cummins has..
Not a Ford but a GM 6.2 diesel that I added a Gail Banks Turbo kit to. It had plenty of power then just had to watch the EGT gauge.
If the Ford diesel is like that GM 6.2 go with an after market kit.
BTW I added it when the motor had a 100K on it sold it with 230K still running great.

Would a more modern Cummins make more power most likely but it also has a turbo remove it and what would it be like?
Dave ----
 
  #6  
Old 07-30-2018, 09:26 PM
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Looks like a good parts truck
 
  #7  
Old 07-30-2018, 09:45 PM
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[QUOTE=Franklin2;18113953]That is a 2wd frame. It will have to be modified to make it 4x4. The best way for you to go and get some lift at the same time is to put a front shackle reversal kit on the front. Here's a link.
https://www.skysoffroaddesign.com/co...ford-fsrob-002

That will give you 2 inches of lift, and the stock dana 60 front axle and springs give you another 2 inches. So you will need lift springs to go higher than that. I am assuming you have lifted a truck that high before? If you do it all suspension it will require driveshaft modifications. The above kit will make it easier to modify the frame to fit up the leaf springs for the 4x4 front axle.

That is the RSK I was looking at. Skyjacker makes a 6 lift kit for these year trucks. Id either do 4 front and 6 rear or 6 front and rear and add 2 block.

They did not make a 4x4 dually pickup until 1999 when the super duties came out. I know you see them running around, but they are swapped in from a cab and chassis truck, those are the only dually style front ends that were made for the early trucks. Don't fall into the trap and buy a cab and chassis dually 4x4 and expect to use the rearend also. The cab and chassis had a special frame and special width rearend to accommodate standard utility beds and such. The truck you have is a pickup frame correct? If it is, you will need a dually pickup rearend for it.

Ive already found a pickup dually rear end and wheels Ill pick up this weekend hopefully! I figure for the front axle, Ill have to get of a SRW truck and change out the hubs.

If you need a engine, I would lean toward the cummins. The original 6.9 and 7.3 engines are good engines, but they are low on power. They need a turbo to get any power, and they did not come with a turbo till late 1994 for about half a year before the powerstroke came out. All the 6.9's and 7.3 idi's you see running around with turbos are mostly aftermarket. The work well, but they do not have the power potiential that a cummins has.

Ive done enough research to know how to mod the 6.9 to the power id Like. Depending on what is currently wrong with it will influence me one way or the other.

If you stick with the international engine, I would ditch the 6 speed idea. It does nothing but give you a extra gear in the middle over the 5 speed zf, and it's not a easy swap. And it will also require the 6 speed transfer case. The 5 speed stuff is a bolt in with any early Ford transfer case.

Id get the transfer case and transmission together. I just figured if I decided to go with 38 military tires, the 6 speed would do better with the extra weight.

You may want to consider getting axles from a later Ford pickup. While they will have metric wheel patterns, they will also be easier to find and give you rear disc brakes also. Do some searching, the later front axles use coil springs, not sure if it can be retro-fitted to your 2wd coils you have now or not.[/QUOTE

From what I understand, this generation frame is 4 to short for 4x4 coil overs up front
 

Last edited by Banjo picker1; 07-30-2018 at 09:50 PM. Reason: To highlight my response to quote
  #8  
Old 07-31-2018, 10:50 AM
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Here is some pics of lifted 1980-1997 duallys I found on google images. If I could get some help identifying lift and tires sizes on these!

I know this one has a 5 lift and 37 tires. To me it either needs a higher lift or smaller tires






 
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Old 07-31-2018, 10:58 AM
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Heres some more!




 
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Old 07-31-2018, 11:15 AM
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Online said this was 4 lift and 35s but it looks a lot higher than my dodge below with 4 lift and currently 33s because I got a good deal on them.

 
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Old 07-31-2018, 06:37 PM
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6" of lift is COMPLETELY useless. NONE of the trucks you have pictured can do any work with the rear tires rubbing like that.
2" lift, 315s and 2" spacers are the biggest you can go and still use the truck
 
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Old 07-31-2018, 09:37 PM
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Diesel Brad I right and I forgot to add my needs and intended use for this truck in my introduction. I need a Crew cab, 8 bed for space to load firewood, and 4x4. I only do occasional towing and nothing extremely heavy usually under 7k trailer and load. (my truck the heaviest Ive towed in the last 5 years.). The reasons for having a lifted truck is 1 ground clearance ( living on a farm with lots of unlevel ground and stumps as well as being able to go over ditches and fallen trees if needed for work.) 2 the when I do drive into the city every couple of months, I CANNOT stand traffic and not being an aggressive driver, I like to see well ahead of me. 3. Groundhog holes in the pasture and large potholes in the road. I destroyed the axle and front end of the F150 I used to have with stock tires in a groundhog hole. It tasted mighty good afterwords (the groundhog) but they say revenge is sweet! 4. I love the look!!!! If my dodge was a crew cab it would suit all my needs but where is the fun in that? Let me note that I dont really need a dually or a full one ton truck but Ive always wanted one and this truck will be overkill for my needs but it will be worth it to me! Also, I always check and adjust tire pressure when I tow so that should help some and where I live, I rarely go above 45-50 mph. I dont imagine 2-4 inches in height would affect too much as with 4 lift, my dodge tows great! (I am a Ford man but also like 1st and 2nd gen dodges!). I know a guy with 10 lift and 40s and he tows 20+ thousand pound construction equipment with it but it doesnt look very fun to drive with all that weight. Do yall think a 4-6 inch lift and 2 body lift would be better?
 
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Old 07-31-2018, 09:48 PM
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Todays work on truck







Well today it was raining so I did a little work on the interior of the truck! I installed the gauge cluster and cover, the drivers sun visor, and the handle on the back driver side door. I then oiled the hood hinges, release, and latch. When installing the cover for the gauge cluster the headlight know fell through the floor where the transmission shifter would normally be. I tried to find it but couldnt. Hopefully after the rain! Well as they say, pics or it didnt happen!
 
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Old 08-01-2018, 06:19 AM
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Well if you dont need a dually, why not just make it single wheel?
 
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Old 08-01-2018, 08:42 AM
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Tip on that cluster: The early trucks had blue/green lense covers for the cluster illumination. If you twist and pull out the bulbs, you can see these covers down in the hole. They get old and cloudy, and you don't get much light and you can't see the cluster at night very well. I take a pencil and poke the colored lense out, and just run the bare bulb, it makes the cluster so you can see it. That gives me a yellowish light which I don't mind, but some people want the colored light and they have found colored bulbs to replace the standard bulbs, and run them without the factory lense covers.

And when you get the pencil out, take the eraser and scrub the copper traces on the circuit board where the bulbs touch. And when you put the bulbs back in, pull them in and out of the sockets about 5 times before leaving them in the black sockets, and then when putting in the black sockets, twist them back and forth about 5 times. You will find if you have any bulbs out, that it's usually poor connections and not the bulb at fault.
 

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