We added a set of halogen headlights to our truck and found out almost immediately that they would trip the circuit breaker in the switch. We'll be adding relays to resolve that issue and a larger-than-stock Powermaster alternator.
We really want to lower our truck for appearance sake, but there are two concerns: Twin I-beam Fords, especially 3/4- and 1-tons, can be a challenge to drop, and we want to retain all the truck's load carrying capacity. This is one of the elements of the rebuild we haven't worked out. It will definitely get new shocks all around and maybe lose a few spring leafs in the rear to soften the ride, and get a pair of auxiliary air springs to handle heavy loads.
Given the size of the stoppers that came on the truck, we'll probably just rebuild what's there.
Fortunately, the body of our truck is in reasonably good shape. There are a few rust bubbles here and there, the inside of the bed needs help, and the tailgate is trash. We might just touch up the paint unless we have enough left over in the budget for a total resquirt.
The inside looks pretty good for a truck this age, but the plastic door panels are cracked and will be replaced. Our biggest concern is that the steering column is actually worn out and the steering wheel is ugly. We also want to get rid of the added gauges under the dash, but that will require having instruments we trust, which means the originals aren't an option.
Wheels and Tires
Our truck has 16-inch aftermarket wheels (the originals were 16.5), and while we're going to make a change, we haven't made the final decision on what will be used.
We obviously have a fairly extensive list of modifications scheduled for our Ford, and the obvious question is: Are such trucks worth the investment of time and money? From our viewpoint, the answer is absolutely. First off, all modifications don't have to be done at once-this is a truck that can be built as its being used-it can be done on a pay-as-you-go basis. And the best part is when we're done, we'll have something different; we really will have a custom classic truck.
The set-back rear axle eliminated...
The set-back rear axle eliminated room for a spare tire in the conventional location, so Ford hid one behind a removable panel in the side of the bed.
The side panel removes like...
The side panel removes like a fender skirt, revealing the spare in a drop-down carrier.
We're lucky that our truck...
We're lucky that our truck has very little rust; however, it does have some telltale bubbles in the cowl. We'll be addressing that too.
Unusual in a number of ways,...
Unusual in a number of ways, these Fords had an extended wheelbase with a set-back rear for better weight distribution when hauling a camper. They also work great for towing. The downside is that with a 1-ton rating, they'll rattle your teeth loose when empty.
The 460 under the hood has...
The 460 under the hood has plenty of power and has been reliable as an anvil, but the fuel mileage is in the single digits.
Thanks to dual Optima batteries,...
Thanks to dual Optima batteries, the truck never lacks starting power. The batteries, along with the recently installed MSD ignition, will stay. Our main focus will be on increasing fuel economy while maintaining the truck's current pulling power.