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18/08/2012
In January, we picked up a 2002 Ford F-150 extended cab 4x4, 4.6L V8, automatic. The intentions are an off-road specific rig for Joel.

The first step was to strip out the stock suspension from the truck, and position a balljoint Dana 60 solid front axle under the truck. Then we spent hours designing a 3-link front suspension for the truck.

After figuring out a plan, many parts were ordered! Diff covers, 5.38 gears, rear spool, tabs, heim joints, master install kits, and so on...

Custom weld-on "GouletFilms.com" beadlocks were fabricated and wrapped with 39.5" Iroks.

Also, 18" travel King coilovers were purchased.

Making the steering work as desired required relocating the steering box.

The Dana 60 knuckles were modified for cross-over steering and double shear.

Based on the designed geometry; tabs for the links, shocks, and the panhard bar were tacked to the front axle. The mounts for the links and panhard bar were also tacked into place on the F-150 frame.


With a temporary panhard bar built, the suspension was cycled to check for clearances.

With the new tube bender, a steering link and panhard bar were fabricated.

Very tight tolerances between parts at full compression!

The shock hoops were tacked in place and the coilovers were bolted into place, and the suspension was cycled.

To make use of the full 18 inches of travel, the entire front suspension has very tight tolerances between parts. With that in mind, the frame was cut and rewelded with a section of large pipe to make clearance for the coilovers.

Next, the front axle was removed from under the truck for some finish welding.

Then, a shock hoop brace was fabricated.

 

04/11/2012
More parts purchased for this build... Battery box, limiting straps, bushings, and air bumps.

Tons of finish welding to do.

The limiting straps are in place.

A custom crossmember was added to increase rigidity. The design was heavily based on tight clearances with up travel, as seen in the pictures below.

The link mounts were modified to be bolted into place, versus welding.

The air bump mounts were fabricated and welded into place on the frame.

 

13/01/2013
The bump stop pads have been positioned on the axle and an extra joint was added to the passenger side main link (to stabiliz the upper link mount, which is located on the main link). The suspension was then cycled and checked again to ensure everything is perfect before final welding.

The link mount/crossmember was completed, and the front axle received its final welding and some paint.

The 5.38 gears were installed and the axle was reassembled.

Bolting everything back under the truck one last time.

Truck sitting on its own weight up front.

Now it's time to move onto the rear suspension... GM 14 Bolt in place.

 

01/02/2013
After planning and design, numerous parts were ordered to get started on the rear suspension fabwork!

Built the structure for the axle truss and got all the tabs tacked into place, as well as the links and shock hoops.

The bump stop mounts were welded into the frame and braced.

Finished up the welding on the truss, bump stop pads, and link tabs.

Moving the axle through it's travel.

Some bending and welding to create a spare tire carrier (and tie both shock hoops together).

Fabricated a crossmember to strengthen the frame.

 

23/11/2013
This update is long overdue. The rear suspension still has to be finished off.

A pinion guard was tied into the rear axle truss.

Time to start painting some stuff in the rear portion of the truck.

All the lower link mounts (front and rear) were tied together with a custom crossmember.

The rear suspension assembly begins! Great feeling having all four tires sitting on the ground.

There's always time to play around in the shop.

The bed installed, the truck is really taking shape quickly now.

Fuel cell and the custom remote brake system.

Next on the list of things to do was the front bumper.

Solid tow points attached the frame are a necessity.

A new set of dimple dies helped finish off the front bumper.

The truck outside in the sunlight.

Checking full flex!

It just needs some final touches now.

And it's done.....well, as done as can be! We all know these types of projects are never really done.


Testing was very successful, as the pictures below clearly show!


 


 

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Serge Goulet & Joel Goulet