Register now to get rid of these ads!

How I lowered a 1962 F-100 with an axle flip (1961-1964 I-Beam)

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by BIGREDTODD, Nov 16, 2010.

  1. BIGREDTODD
    Joined: Jan 9, 2007
    Posts: 2,835

    BIGREDTODD
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I really appreciate the response Frank. I think this approach could be applied to any similar set-up, be it a '48-'64 Ford, or a '47-'59 Jimmy. (i'm sure a Binder is very similar, but I've never gutted one of those before).

    Many people have asked why we didn't just buy a set of dropped, reversed-eye mono leafs, and a dropped I-beam. The answer is simply money vs. time. I felt very confident in the fact that I could execute this cleanly, and Tim was comfortable with it too. Modified stock, with a little imagination gets the same end, and frees up about $1,000 in buy-out parts.

    Regardless of which way an I-beam is lowered, the steering geometry is the key issue that needs to be addressed. I corrected this by moving the steering box up. I suppose there's still a chance that we'll need to install a stabilizer on the I-beam, but if so it will be due to the caster that I built in. This is a land-speed truck, so high-speed stability is the goal.

    I will say that adding dropped mono-leafs to this set-up increases the drop potential, but they are pretty pricey. Also, we are using the stock engine/tranny location so this is about the limit for modified stock components considering oil pan clearance.

    This really turned into a long-winded response...sorry.

    Thanks again for the compliment.
     
  2. Looks great Todd! You've done a wonderful job! Now I can't wait to start on the cage. I also want to add that the 350ci Y is coming together, looking to get better than 500 HP out of that one. Should move the truck along nicely. ;)
     
  3. unibody madness
    Joined: Dec 2, 2008
    Posts: 32

    unibody madness
    Member

    Awsome,simply awsome
     
  4. Used Up Junk
    Joined: Nov 12, 2008
    Posts: 667

    Used Up Junk
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Merced, CA

    Not to drag your thread off topic but who's bellhousing did you use to bolt the T-5 to the Y-block? I'm guessing it's one of John Mummert's? Thanks for the great write up on the front axle flip as well. I just picked up a '64 shortwide for a daily driver and want to run a T-5 behind the 292 in it and wanted to flip the front and rear axles as well.
     
  5. BIGREDTODD
    Joined: Jan 9, 2007
    Posts: 2,835

    BIGREDTODD
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Tim actually does these himself (he a machinist)...
     
  6. BIGREDTODD
    Joined: Jan 9, 2007
    Posts: 2,835

    BIGREDTODD
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    OK...time for a little update

    baby steps...PUN intended, because at this point I've been asked to leave, so Corinne's baby shower can go on unfettered [​IMG]

    Definitely looks like it's starting to mean business.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    ...trimmed off the old shifter links...
    [​IMG]
    Just about final steering geometry...the goal is to have just a bit of inlcine from the front to the rear. Should be just about right when reassembled and wet.
    [​IMG]
    As planned, still plenty of clearance between the engine and relocated steering box. Oil filter clearance is fine, the angle of this shot is deceiving.
    [​IMG]
    A bit over 2" of axle/pan clearance. Yeah, not much, but this is a race truck so no one gets to bitch about being impractical. Practicality is for your Toyota Camry.
    [​IMG]
     
  7. Dirt n Potatoes
    Joined: May 25, 2008
    Posts: 10

    Dirt n Potatoes
    Member

    Nice Build. Just read the whole thread for the first time. I love the front end set-up.
     
  8. Used Up Junk
    Joined: Nov 12, 2008
    Posts: 667

    Used Up Junk
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Merced, CA

    Thanks for the reply about the bellhousing! When I get ready to stab a T5 in my truck I'll be sure to shoot Tim a PM. Nothing against any other company but I'd rather give money to a HAMBer as well as work with someone close to home.
     
  9. I've got one that just need a few finishing touches. ;)
     
  10. Great tech thread! Cool truck, I should come down there and use my 66 merc crewlcab as the pushtruck!!

    Frank, I have done this sort of thing in my 48 Merc truck. Its the same principles and worked gooder...

    -Shiny
     
  11. Mattilac
    Joined: Oct 27, 2007
    Posts: 1,148

    Mattilac
    Member

    How are you going to deal with headers and getting around the steering box?
     
  12. Toymaker
    Joined: Mar 26, 2006
    Posts: 3,920

    Toymaker
    Member
    from Fresno,CA

    Looks Great Todd and I love the color. One tech note, when I did the same mod to our International big rig we had a issue with the caster changing when you steered the truck. We had removed the springs to lower it even more and they weren't stiff enough to hold the axle camber when turning, it wasn't bad and I told Lee to just drive it:D, it was just a Drag Truck! I plan on using radius rods when we get it running again.
     
  13. BIGREDTODD
    Joined: Jan 9, 2007
    Posts: 2,835

    BIGREDTODD
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Flange kit and custom headers...:cool:

    I believe the fellow doing the cage is going to attack the headers...The final positioning (front to back) on the steering box was executed with this situation in mind. There's enough room for a smooth exit and curve back and down on the rear most port. Or, the tube could come out, forward, over and down to join the front 3 tubes...

    The front springs are a little soft, but I kept all of the leaves just in case some need to be added back in. Seems to be holding pretty well, and hopefully we have proportionally less weight to compound the issue...we are focused on going straight too:D

    If the spring rate turns into an issue, dropped mono's may come into play, but the true test will be at the lake bed.
     
  14. Atwater Mike
    Joined: May 31, 2002
    Posts: 9,855

    Atwater Mike
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I was in the front end business for years. (50+) These axles (including 18 wheelers) are bent cold, not heated.
    There were 'shops' that heated them to straighten them, but they were avoided by the knowledgeable...
    Ford pickup axles took 7 tons (thereabouts) to bend (on vehicle) where Chev/GMC bent at 3tons. (5 ton bottle jack and hook) Big rigs (Peterbilt, KW, et al) took around 12, depending on where the bend had to occur.
    An experienced man can straighten an axle with varying degrees of camber side-to-side in one bend. (ratio of proportion)
     
  15. BIGREDTODD
    Joined: Jan 9, 2007
    Posts: 2,835

    BIGREDTODD
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Well, it's getting there. not too much of an update functionally, but it will be great for you guys who only look at the pictures in magazines [​IMG]

    While I didn't get to this today, here's the makings of the roll cage "outriggers". The 4" x 4" tubing will be welded perpendicular to the trucks ladder frame, and the 2" x 4" tubing will gusset/triangulate the 4" x 4" tubing. Open ends of the 4" x 4" tube will be boxed for strength and completely sealed, to prevent salt & dirt storage.
    [​IMG]

    While they aren't painted yet (had to brong them, and the paint inside to warm up) the factory shock mounts were marked to clear the c-notch in the frame. these, and a few other items will go back in when the truck goes back on stands.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    At this point it was decided that it was time to mount (temporarily) the front clip, to get an idea of stance, clearances, and to start cleaning out the bed of the truck (former home for the front sheet metal). So I pulled the grill and inner fenders and set it on...Look at that, a nearly complete truck peeking out of the garage!
    [​IMG]

    More to come this week if all goes even close to plan [​IMG]
     
  16. Yo Baby
    Joined: Jul 11, 2004
    Posts: 2,812

    Yo Baby
    Member

    It's becoming a rig with stylish stance.
    Mighty good lookin'.
    Really enjoying your trip.
     
  17. Did a little engine work today, the 301 will be good for testing but I have a 350ci Y going together that will make some real mph.

    To start I have a 312 crank that was offset ground to make 3.7" stroke.
    [​IMG]

    The block is a B9AE that has been filled half way and bored to 3.875"
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Used "NASCAR" rods that are 6.25" and have a big end of 1.967" let me offset grind without welding
    [​IMG]


    I have some TRW pistons ment for a 307 Chsebbie that will give me a 13.4:1 cr
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]


    Engine turned out nice with piston just a couple thousands out of the hole, should make for a good quench.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2011
  18. choptvan
    Joined: Mar 19, 2010
    Posts: 2,161

    choptvan
    Member

    HEll yeah! That sounds/looks like a fun motor. Love the progress!
     
  19. Did a few things on the engine this weekend, not much but I did degree the cam and check valve to piston clearance along with the quench area.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    quench is about .050 although with the piston rocking I believe it is more like .040 which is what I was shooting for.
    [​IMG]
    with such a big relief in the pistons the valves didn't even come close.
    [​IMG]
    Here's a shot looking down the exhaust with valve fully open (.585") [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    I also got some required goodies this week, these will be mounted when the cage goes in. [​IMG]
     
  20. BIGREDTODD
    Joined: Jan 9, 2007
    Posts: 2,835

    BIGREDTODD
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Quick little update from the weekend...

    The notched factory shock mounts painted & installed with stainless hardware...
    [​IMG]

    Building blocks for the cage outriggers, and assembly.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Outriggers as they will be positioned on the frame. Front outriggers only have one gusset, as they will be welded to a factory body mount on the frame.
    [​IMG]

    The finished rear outriggers, ready to install. Should be enough beef there to do the job.
    [​IMG]

    This picture will hurt all you guys that started with rusty trucks. We actually needed some big holes in the floor. Care was taken to avoid cutting through any structure, and locate the mount locations as close to the cabin corners as possible...
    [​IMG]

    Trimmed a little more off the floor pan to provide as much access as possible to the top of the outrigger. Outriggers are simply tackd in place for now. Cage fabricator will weld in final location.
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2011
  21. Unibodyguy
    Joined: Dec 23, 2007
    Posts: 405

    Unibodyguy
    Member

    I really Love this thread. Always interesting to check up on.

    Michael
     
  22. BIGREDTODD
    Joined: Jan 9, 2007
    Posts: 2,835

    BIGREDTODD
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I received a PM about the steering box relocation that I figured warranted response here in the thread...

    There are a number of factors involved here that may or may not come into play in your scenario. Take another look at posts #98 and #132.

    You can see that by moving the steering box up, I essentially hinged the steering shaft at the column mount on the dash. All else remaining equal, this effects a change in the "home"position of the pitman arm, resulting in a net reduction in the length of the drag link. Very likely this will be typical to your situation.

    The I-Beam in this application was leaned back approximately 10º for high speed stability as a land speed effort, also resulting in a net reduction in the length of the drag link. Not likely that this will effect you, unless you made a similar modification.

    Since we are running a Y-block, in the standard location the routing for the tube headers was very important to consider. Though difficult to capture in pictures, I had to locate the box in a manner to "straddle' the back 2 exhaust ports to avoid choking where they exited the engine. While a consideration, this probably won't effect your application.

    I did move the axle forward 2 1/2", which resulted in a net increase in the length of the drag link. If you didn't move you axle, this won't effect you.

    In short, odd's are that you'll need to shorten your drag link. Please ensure that the quality of the weld is there, and to make sure that you achieve proper penetration and finish it out nicely. I wanted this to look factory, and it really came out nicely.

    The end result, and really the entire point of moving the steering box up is to achieve correct steering geometry. You are looking for a slight upward slope on the drag link at finished ride height (when looking at it from the driver's side of the truck). Nothing really scientific about it, it's just geometry.

    Thanks for the question. This thread in no way is the be all, end all of dropping an I-beam...just lots of information based on good & bad experiences.

    Todd

     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2011
    olscrounger likes this.
  23. lucky ink
    Joined: Feb 18, 2011
    Posts: 324

    lucky ink
    Member

    great job gettin ready to drop my 55 f100
     
  24. oldnuts
    Joined: Jan 14, 2009
    Posts: 355

    oldnuts
    Member
    from nebraska

    thanks alot for all of this great info. im gonna use alot of it when i drop my 64. i cant wait to see the future progress you guys are making. thanks again
     
  25. BIGREDTODD
    Joined: Jan 9, 2007
    Posts: 2,835

    BIGREDTODD
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    3 day weekend

    +

    Understanding (8 1/2 month pregnant wife)

    +

    Garage time for loose ends

    =

    Progress pictures coming soon!
     
  26. BIGREDTODD
    Joined: Jan 9, 2007
    Posts: 2,835

    BIGREDTODD
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Next Sunday (3/27) is the day the truck heads back to Tim's for the cage, and next stage of assembly, so it's time for all of my loose ends to get cleaned up, and finish everything I can before then...my wife & I are also 2 weeks away from the due date of our first child on 4/3, so it's gonna be a crazy time around here...

    To continue where I left off, the front outriggers had to be tweaked a bit to hug the front body mount, and clear the cab portion adequately. They will weld to the frame portion of the body mount in lieu of a forward facing gusset like I did in the rear. The pie cut out of the top of the 4x4 tube allows the outrigger to still project 12" from the side of the frame while at the same time clear the structural floor support at the front cab mount.
    [​IMG]

    As they will be oriented in the truck, and a quick shot of the finished pair of front outriggers...
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Just as before, I had to cut out the floor for access where the down tubes will connect...if it makes you rust belt guys feel any better I did cut through some surface rust on the passenger side [​IMG]

    Passenger front:
    [​IMG]

    Passenger rear:
    [​IMG]

    Driver's front:
    [​IMG]

    Driver's rear:
    [​IMG]

    Here's a shot of the outriggers tacked in place. If you look close, you can see where they will weld to the front cab mount as I mentioned earlier.

    Passenger side:
    [​IMG]

    Driver's side:
    [​IMG]
     
  27. BIGREDTODD
    Joined: Jan 9, 2007
    Posts: 2,835

    BIGREDTODD
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    For everyone who thought we'd gor racing with all threads and mock-up plates:p here's a picture/summary of how I modified the original 3/8" u-bolt girdles to sit under the springs, and add protection by adding return legs to shield the u-bolts.

    Original u-bolt/bump stop ass'y. Already cut to be reconfigured.
    [​IMG]

    Tacked the cut-off pieces, to create return legs to add another level of safety, just in case...(these will protect the u-bolts that are now under the axle)...(I left the pieces long for ease of handling. I cut them off after they were tacked in place.
    [​IMG]

    You can see what we're trying to accomplish here.
    [​IMG]

    Here's the 2nd return leg tacked in place, and how the girdle will actually be oriented in the truck.
    [​IMG]

    Flip side:
    [​IMG]

    Fully welded, with a bead on the inside too...just for good measure.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    All cleaned up, ready for paint and installation. I think they came out pretty well. More importantly, they do the job.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Revised u-bolt girdle installed. Maybe this picture helps make sense of why the returns are imortant. With the scrub line being tight, this is purely for safety...
    [​IMG]

     
    olscrounger likes this.
  28. BIGREDTODD
    Joined: Jan 9, 2007
    Posts: 2,835

    BIGREDTODD
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Also decided that now was as good as any time to fill the gas filler opening...not nearly as exciting and reminded me why I like chassis work. You never know when you going to uncover an old repair...

    Pretty straightforward, just cut a patch from a piece of sheet metal & formed it to the shape of the body. I then traced the patch to give myself a cut line. I like using a sharpie, and cutting through the line with my cut-off wheel. Usually gives me the gap I want. Then just tack tack tack, and stitch stictch stitch. I much rather have a few lows, then high spots. Makes filling, blocking, and priming much easier. In this case I made the patch about an inch wider so I could cut out the majority of the old slide hammer holes from a previous repair. Nothing like the smell of old bondo turning to dust.

    Not as exciting in my book, but here's a few pictures of the process.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  29. Nick Flores
    Joined: Aug 13, 2009
    Posts: 1,355

    Nick Flores
    Member

    Nice fix on the filler opening. I've been wondering how to go about that. Great pics... worth way more then a thousand words!
     
  30. malkintent
    Joined: Sep 3, 2007
    Posts: 442

    malkintent
    Member

    love this tread!!!!!
     

Share This Page

Register now to get rid of these ads!

Archive

Copyright © 1995-2020 The Jalopy Journal: Steal our stuff, we'll kick your teeth in. Terms of Service. Privacy Policy.

Atomic Industry
Forum software by XenForo™ ©2010-2014 XenForo Ltd.