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Technical 1947 Ford Truck shock upgrade

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by HemiRambler, Jun 22, 2020.

  1. HemiRambler
    Joined: Aug 26, 2005
    Posts: 4,144

    HemiRambler
    Member

    I haven’t seen a lot on this so maybe it’ll be helpful to someone. I’ve run the original knee action shocks on my truck for years and frankly they were fine...UNTIL I changed to some softer front springs and that put a light on just how bad those vintage shocks were. It was especially bad when towing the dragster as well. I liked the idea of getting some vintage shock brackets but never could find the right ones for my truck. My patience ran out and I decided to just make what I had work. Wanting to use the factory lower mount I opted to machine a shock stud, but if you don’t have access to a lathe it’d be just as easy to fab a bracket off the spring bolts. Next since I had the ‘wrong’ shock brackets the holes didn’t line up (too close together) so I added the notches. Lastly I opted to shorten the shock brackets 2-1/2” - this really was an entirely UNNECESSARY step as I could have just used a longer shock, but I was using what I had laying around so out came the saw. Oh I almost forgot I also made 1/2” thk. spacers behind the shock mounts. This helped with clearance to the inner fender well (which still needed a slight amount of clearance added - BFH). Just took it around the block, the difference is very noticeable, huge improvement. I can’t wait to see how it tows now. And yes I realize the shock angle isn’t ideal but the improvement is so big I can’t see myself worrying about it.
     

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  2. leon bee
    Joined: Mar 15, 2017
    Posts: 482

    leon bee
    Member
    from Arkansas!

    Thanks for posting this, same task is on my list.
     
  3. HemiRambler
    Joined: Aug 26, 2005
    Posts: 4,144

    HemiRambler
    Member

    I will say IF you still have the stock front suspension as I do, the BEST upgrade I did was to add DISC BRAKES and POWER STEERING. One for safety the other for pure enjoyment factor. I did the brakes right off as I hated the drum brakes. I waited a LONG time before I did the Power Steering which I regret because it's SO SO SO much nicer driving it now. I may be a tad jaded as I also use it to tow a trailer and backing that up with Manual Steering absolutely SUCKED. YMMV. Enjoy - they are great trucks!!!
     
  4. leon bee
    Joined: Mar 15, 2017
    Posts: 482

    leon bee
    Member
    from Arkansas!

    This one I have definitely takes both arms to turn, but I haven't addressed the steering yet. Just have it yard driving, getting a seat is about next.
     
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  5. HemiRambler
    Joined: Aug 26, 2005
    Posts: 4,144

    HemiRambler
    Member

    Here's a link to my Power Steering Post. Maybe it will be of some help to you. https://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/threads/power-steering-for-47-ford-truck.853191/

    BTW Anyone with one of these trucks I strongly encourage you to look CLOSELY at the steering box mounts. I have heard of several developing CRACKS. The explanation I heard that made the most sense is that originally these were designed to drive on SKINNY tires on DIRT roads. That translates to little load placed on the steering box. Add radial tires and increased speeds on paved roads and those loads increase tremendously. I noticed on mine that the box FLEXED the frame - whihc is why I upgraded to THRU BOLTING. YMMV
     
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2020
  6. leon bee
    Joined: Mar 15, 2017
    Posts: 482

    leon bee
    Member
    from Arkansas!

    Yes, someone has jacked around trying to "improve" the steering box mount on this one. I appreciate all this and am bookmarking it for future study. This pickup was way petrified and is a slow motion project. I SWEAR it's the last project like this for me. Been thinking about maybe someday buying a car that already runs and moves and stops.
     

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