The Professional Choice

F-100 Cody Style

Dropping a 1979 Ford F-100

Three years ago we spoke with Cody Ramer because he wanted to lower his 79 F-100. And as we all know, the last few years haven’t been the best job environment. You probably guessed Cody was a victim of the shrinking economy and his F-100 project had to postponed. You have now probably guessed good things happened so Cody could get back to his Dream F-100. You guessed right!

 

Cody's 79 F-100

 

Cody has sent us a blow by blow description of the suspension install with lots of pictures. You’ll see just how cool it is to lower these older king pin “Effies”, and why they are becoming so popular!

Installation

I started with the back of the truck, DJM hangers and shackles. I lifted the truck by the frame and put a jack under the rear end. Unbolt the shackles, for the top bolt on the shackle you need to jack the rear end up to where the top bolt can clear the top of the frame. You will need to install the top bolt with the nut on the outside (should be the same way it came out.) If you don’t you will run into clearance problem later.

 

Rear Leaf Spring Hanger and Shackles

There are two arms that come off the bottom of the bed and go in front and behind the rear fender, the rear one take off and discard. You will need to notch the bottom of the bed for clearance, where you took off that arm. (I have a picture.) The hangers were straight froward. I used a air hammer with a chisel knocked the heads off the rivets on the outside of the frame, then used a punch bit to knock them out, the only problem I ran into was with the bottom two rivets on each side they have a plate on the inside of the frame, you will need to chisel off that head also then punch them out. ( A torch might of worked better.) Then just bolt the hangers right up to the original holes. I did put the leaf spring on the hanger before bolting the hanger to the frame. Shocks were easy unbolt the old ones and in with the new.

 

Front I-Beams, Sipndle, Brake Rotor, Radius Arm, Coil Spring

Now to the front DJM dream beams. Start by taking the caliper off, then the rotor, there is a shield with three bolts, real easy to get to take off. (I went ahead and packed the bearings and turned the rotors while I had them off.) Then take the nut off of the tie rod and pop it out. (Hit the spindle where the tie rod goes through it to knock out the tie rods.) Now the coil spring, you will need a open end wrench to take the nut off inside the spring. Then on the top of the coil spring there is a bracket with two bolts that hold the spring on the top take them off. Now put a jack under the I beam and put a little pressure on it. Now the bottom bolt of your shock, take it out, then slowly let the jack down the coil spring will come out. There is another nut on the bolt that went up into the coil spring take it off. Then one last bolt where the I beam bolts up to the frame. Now you can take the beam with the spindle to a work bench, helps to have vice take the nut off the pin that hold the king pin in place knock it out, take off the grease caps knock out the king pins, and get your dream beam and put it all back together. Put the tie rod extender on the spindle, (you do not have to tighten it up yet.) Then when you are going back on with the coil spring get your tie rod started in the tie rod extender. Now if you forget to start the tie rods you can take the pitman arm off and get them that way.

 

DJM Dream Beam Installation, Tie Rod extenders

The Story Behind Cody’s F-100

Cody sent us more “Beauty Shots” of his F-100 and the story behind this particular “Effie”

I was 16 years old, a sophomore in high school, when I got my first truck. It was a gift from my Uncle Thom. Before he gave it to me he had the seat reupholstered, a new head liner, and new carpet put in it for me. When he gave me the truck I knew right away that I wanted it to be a custom truck. I had been hooked on truck magazines since I was in the 5th grade, and now it was time for me to put all my ideas to work. Since I was still in high school, living at home with my parents, I worked part time at the local grocery store sacking groceries to earn money so I could fix my truck up. In my spare time I would work on my truck in my parents carport.

The first thing I had to do when I got the truck was put a sound system in it. I have always been a big guy, I am 6 foot 6in., So I knew there wouldn’t be much room behind the seat for me to install speakers. I decided to cut out the back of the cab and weld in boxes that would go through the bed. I lined the inside of the boxes with wood and spray foam to help maximize the sound. I also cut out under the seat belt straps to add some 6×9’s. This was my first bit of customizing.

My next project was to work on shaving the bed caps, mirrors, doors, and emblems. I did not know how to do any of this at the time so I warped a lot of it, but you have to learn some how. Then the next thing to be shaved was the tail lights, I bought a smooth roll pan, and 4 oval LED tail lights. I put the lights in the roll pan, and welded in the old brake tights. It just didn’t seam like it was enough so I decided to add a 3rd brake light, a 12in. LED. I made a box for it and frenched it in on top of the cab. The back of the truck was looking pretty good, but not quite good enough so I decided to make a custom tail gate. I bought a new tail gate with the intention of making it so that it could open. I made it with a frenched in license plate sideways, like I had always wanted. After this I looked at it and thought to myself why not shave it all in? So that’s what I did. There was a lot of welding on the back of that truck, but I must say its my favorite part of the truck.

I was also working on stripping the truck to bare metal while doing the mods. I would get a bed side striped over the weekend and next week I would have to drive to school and work, it seamed like it would only rain if I had a part down to bare metal. So next weekend I would be out there striping the rust off I would do this over and over until I finally got a chance to prime it.

I would like to thank God for blessing me in so many ways, and with so many special people in my life. My parents Kim and Jim. Mom didn’t really like me working on my truck because her carport was always a wreck. Dad always supported me and thought it was great. My parents didn’t just give me everything, they taught me to work hard and do my best no matter what I did. My wife Brittany, although she and I had just began dating when my truck was almost finished, she has been very supportive of me. My good friend Jim Golden who now works in a body shop as a painter, and is also co founder of our club Kustoms and Kruzers. My sis Tiffany, she lives pretty far away, but always took an interest in my truck and the progress I was making. Some of my other good friends I would like to mention are Anthony, Coy and Nevada. They were always there to lend a hand, and help any way they could. Mark Dunham at DJM suspension for helping me bring my truck closer to earth, it looks so much better. Last but not least my Uncle Thom. Without him I never would have got the truck and may never of built a custom truck. So a big thanks to you Thom.

Gallery Photo’s

Here are more images of Cody’s F-100 Check them out in the gallery!

62 Responses to F-100 Cody Style

    • Hey Samuel,

      Sorry, I didn’t get to see your question till know! You can use our Dream Beams for both drum and disc brake set ups! We do not provide the disc brake spindles but you can get them from a junk yard, so you are good to go for your 67. Here is a link to the F100 products for your truck!

      Mark

  1. I have a 78 f100 long bed I am wanting to lower it what all parts do ì need to be able to drop it as low to the ground as possible and still fit a 255/35/r22 under it

    • Hi Kris,

      Here is a link to the parts you need! Because we don’t have the opportunity to work with all wheel and tire combinations can’t say if you will have any clearance issues, but I can tell you if your overall wheel and tire diameter is the same or very close to the factory diameter then you should not have any trouble. Send me some pictures when your done! Good luck!!

      Mark

    • Tim,

      I of course would recommend this kit. It is exactly what you’re looking for and can be installed at home! The big thing that you don’t want to do is monkey with your factory coil springs in the front. If you try to cut them you induce negative camber that you can’t adjust out, besides the loss of ride quality, etc. Here is a link to a 3/4 drop on a 78 F100. different parts but same stance, take a look and let me know what you think, or questions!

      Mark

  2. Hi, I installed the DJM Dream Beams on my 69 F100 and shackles and hangars on the rear of the truck. I also installed new stock coil springs and new short shock absorbers(DJM). The truck sits higher than my 67 F100 which has the Dream Beams also, and the front wheels don’t quite tuck up under the lip of the fender how I would like. Is it possible to use lowering coil springs with the Dream Beams? If I did, will this effect the camber of the wheels and make it impossible to do an accurate alignment?

    • Mike,

      From what you have described, it sounds like the new coil springs are a little longer than the factory coils you removed. That would explain the ride height and the front wheels not tucking. How does it align? Do you have positive camber? If you do a shorter coil may be in order, or going back to factory coils, or trimming the new coils. Let me know where your alignment is!

      Mark

      • The new coils I installed in my 69 were the same height of the old coils I removed. On the 67 I reused the original coils which i’m assuming that they had lost a bit of their stiffness over the years compared to a new set. Also, the 67 had a 460 motor where the 69 is running a 390. Probably some weight difference between the two motors. No, have not done an alignment yet on the 69 but I will once the motor is rebuilt and installed. Right after I lowered the truck I ended up pulling the motor to do a rebuid, so alignment will be next. If it does align like it should and still sits a bit high, how much of the coil can I cut without affecting the camber??

        • Mike,

          You can’t assume based on the unloaded length of coil springs (being the same height) they will give you the same ride height. Maybe, probably with the F100 coils, but they may have a different loaded length (by design). That is to say they may hold the same load at a different length. If the front is too high the moment you change (cut) the spring it will affect the camber. If you’re too high and you have positive camber you can shorten the spring and reduce the positive camber, if you’re too high and have negative camber shortening the spring will cause more negative camber. You will most likely have to play around with the springs to find the “sweet spot” for ride height and alignment. Best practice for cutting springs is to be very conservative and only remove a 1/4 coil at a time so you don’t go too far without knowing it. Very hard to replace the cut material;( It is labor intensive but the only way to sneak up on good alignment and ride height!

          Mark

  3. Hello. I also have an 81 f100 I want to drop. It has king pins and I believe uneven beams. Is there anything I can do to get this thing lowered? There has to be a way! Really frustrating, it is such a cool truck and I could use some help!

    Thank you.
    Ryan

    • Ryan,

      If it has unequal length King Pin beams, at this time there are no parts to lower it. Very sorry to report, check and make sure. That was a transition Ford made towards the unequal length ball joint beams!

      Sorry,
      Mark

  4. I have a 1978 F100 Custom 5.0, I just bought this past week your dream beams 3″ front drop along with the shocks, I am trying to find the correct drop shock for the rear, I am using a flip kit in the rear, and want to know what shock to run, I have had no help looking, my stock shock length extended is 19 3/4 and compressed is 12 3/8 with a travel length of 7 3/8. Any help with this would be greatly appreciated!

    Thank you

    Anthony

    • Anthony,

      Do you know what type of mounts your rear shocks have? Examples – loop/loop, or stem/loop, or stem/stem. Where loop is a rubber bushing in a loop at the end or stem where there is a threaded rod attached to either or both ends of the shock.

      Mark

      • The top mount is threaded, as in the top goes through a hole in the chassis and you put a nut on it. The bottom mount there is a hole in the shock where you put a bolt through it. I hope this helps you and eventually helps me.

        Anthony

        • Anthony,

          We have a shock we use with our 4″ hanger/shackle kit. The part number is 1910, it is 19.5″ extended and 12.25″ collapsed, which is almost the same length as the one you have. I am wondering if you have a stock shock or a replacement that has a similar length. Our shock works great with a 4″ drop, how much do you think you will get with the flip? Finding a shorter shock with the stem mount on top might be tough. Let me know how much drop you will get in the rear!

          Mark

  5. Nice truck….. I just lowered my 77 f150 and I need to buy tires… what size do you guys recommend on stock steel wheels…. I lowered it six inches with lowered I beams and springs. The stock 275 75 15s rub when turning. Thanks in advance for the info

    • Jeffred,

      Sounds like you may need to drop the aspect ratio down to 65 or 60 , maybe even a 55 series. That simply reduces the overall diameter of your wheel and tire. You could also reduce the width a little if you need. Most of the F100’s we’ve played with have stock springs and so far most wheel and tire packages work great. Send a picture, would love to see your “effie”

      Mark

  6. Nice truck I have a lil problem I have a 1967 f100 and I purchased
    The lowering kid from djm suspention and when I put the spacer it don’t clear from the radios arm could any one help me out ? I replace all front disc brakes of a 72 or 73 ford thank

  7. I just got a 1976 F150 ext. cab, what kit will I need to lower it. Looking to lower the front and rear of the truck.

    Thanks
    Jeremy

  8. Hi ,
    I recently purchased a 1978 F-100 …. my Dad is my hero and a Veteran of the US Army Vietnam era .
    Anyway as much as I hate to even consider losing him(his health and back are giving him a bigger fight each day) , I want to build this truck while he’s still around and able to fuss and tell me what to do and what I did wrong! lol
    I need to find the best deal possible on a set of drop beams and the camber correctors …… I have DJM beams on my 96′ Ranger(daily driver ) and they work pretty nice (though I wish I was a bit lower!)
    Question …. can I still get it aligned pretty close if I use your drop beams and cut a coil or so from my spring?
    Thank-you and best wishes from South Carolina

    • I am referring to the f100 when asking about getting a little lower with your beams and a cut coil spring

      • Thomas,

        What a great project! I would love to cover your build here in the Garage, let me know if your interested! Know, please resist temptation to cut the springs so you can get more drop. There is no way to adjust the camber or caster settings on a F100, camber is set by the spring length and caster is set by the beam. So to get a proper alignment you need an unmolested factory coil installed. Others have actually heated and bent the I-beams trying to adjust for cut springs!! Of course this is not a good idea for safety reasons. You will get a 3″ drop with the DJM Beams and the caster and camber will be in spec. If I can help you any more please let me know and I would love tell your story. Good Luck!!

        Mark

        • I know your not going to recommend this at all, but we just got a 1965 fi00 that has your lowering kit on it sits great but the front wheels are slanted in at the top, after reading your comment above heating the beams is out of the question. With that said i’am going to make this work come — well you know. How about slicing a pie piece out of the bottom of the beam and rewelding??

          Thanks
          Al

          • Al,

            Of course I can’t and will not recommend or endorse modifying parts like that. I will tell you that the small rectangular end of the king pin ibeams are made with solid material, the rest is tubing! By the way the only reason you should have negative camber in the front is because the front springs have been monkeyed with. How was the rear lowered? Just curious!

            Mark

  9. I have a 78 f250 8 lug 2wd with a 400. Reg cab long bed and I’m looking for an inexpensive way to get the front down 3 inches or so and the back 4-5. Any ideas?

    • Jon,

      I don’t have a good answer for you. As you may know we have kits for the F100 and they are very popular, the F250/350 chassis have different parts but are design wise the same as F100 parts. If you pester us enough maybe we could get a truck and build parts for it, seriously, that is how some of these kits are made. If there are enough guy’s who want a kit for a truck someone will make it! So keep bugging us and check back periodically and you just might be able to order your kit!!

      Mark

  10. I have a 1966 F250 camper special (352 with cruiseamatic transmission) and am just beginning to research my options on suspension. I dont plan to use this truck for anything but pleasure and plan to build a very nice driveable truck. I want to soften the suspension for a lot nicer ride and if possible convert to disc brakes on the front. Can you help me with my project or point me in the right direction for the information I need and availability of parts and suppliers? There is a lot of info available on the F100 but I am having trouble finding info on the heavier F250 models.
    Thank you, Michael Turner

    • Michael,

      If your F250 has a 5 lug wheel then the F100 parts will work, but I am sure you have an 8 lug wheel and that means our parts will not work. Your projects sounds like a interesting build but i don’t know where to send you. Suspension wise all the parts are physically different than the F100 cousin, body panels and interior parts might be the same but we just don’t know. I think the camper specials had a beefy-er spring package and bigger brakes. There are some Ford forums that may be able to help, google them up and see what you can find!

      Mark

  11. Hi from “DownUnder in Sydney, Australia.
    My son (Brad) and I (Mark) are just commencing building a 1984 F100 in “Tech-Rat” style and are looking to lower both front and rear by around 3″.
    The truck is an Aussie-assembled body with an inline 6 cyl engine and manual g-box. The I-beams are of unequal length with 1 3/4″ lower ball joints fitted. Should we order your 30033 Dream Beams or your 30038 Dream beams to do the front? And will your drop shackle kit be all we will require for the rear?
    Thanks & kind regards,

    Mark.

    • Mark & Brad,

      Great to hear from Sydney! The right parts for your job would be DJM3003-3/4, this kit would give you a 3″ front drop and a 3″ or 4″ rear drop depending on which hole you use to mount the rear shackle! Please if you can send us some pictures and your story and we can put you in “The Garage”. Let me know if I can help any more!! By the way, I don’t think the website will ship to Australia but we can still get you parts the old fashion way, over the phone or by e-mail if you prefer!!

      Thanks,
      Mark

  12. Hi Mark. After a long time trying to sort out the 81 model F100..I have finally gave up and soured a 75model… King pin front end. Have you a contact number to ring to arrange a set of Ibeams ? Cheers Andrew

    • Andrew,

      Great news, when your done please send me some pictures so we can show everyone you guys “DownUnder” rock!! You can contact me at 310-538-1583 or mark@djmsuspension.com! the UPS fee to ship to you is around $400 US. Let me know how we can help you more!!

      Mark

  13. enjoy seeing other peoples creations,I have a 76 F150 Trailer special and plan on getting your lowering kit.My question is reguarding wheels/tires.Would stock 18″ rims from a newer Ford Lightning bolt up to my hubs and would rubbing/clearance issues be a problem.

    • Dan,

      I am on the road right now and don’t have access to my usual information resources but my instincts are telling me that the Lighting wheels would not work on your 76. I am thinking the Lighting wheels are hub centric ( wheel is located by the hub ) on your 76 the lugs and nuts locate the locate the wheel. I might be wrong about this however so please do some more checking! Thanks for reading the stories and let me know if I can help any more!

      Mark

    • Peter,

      Click here to find lowering kits for your 95-F150. Scroll to the bottom of the kit page and click to see individual parts!

      Good luck and let me know if I can answer any questions!

      Mark

  14. Hello,
    I’m having a difficult finding front coil spring seats are rotted out on my 1980 f100 stepside 4.9L. Do you know where I can get replacement `seats and insulator, I believe its a 3 piece assy? Any othwer ideas? thank you

    • Michael,

      If you can’t find a set from the junk yard, your best bet is probably factory replacement parts from a NAPA store. Federal Mogoul, Moog and others manufacture “factory replacement” parts for many applications. Good Luck!!

      Mark

  15. Hi Mark
    Thank you very much for your time. Sorry it took a while for my response. I have just checked and it a King Pin front suspension and the I Beams are different length… One is around 1000mm and the other is 800mm ( estimate only ) Is drop spindles are option instead of I beams… ?
    Mark thanks again for your help.. Look forward to your response..
    Best regards
    Andrew

    • Andrew,

      The beams we make for the king pin F-100’s are equal lenght I am sorry to say. This is why we only list applications to 1979. After that there is a mixture of different beams through 1982. We always ask about the lenght and sometimes luck out and find a 1980, or 81/82 with the equal lenght king pin beams! But we did not get lucky this time. I am not aware of any drop spindles for the I beam Fords, again sorry I have not been much help to you!

      Mark

  16. Hi There … Just a update.. I’ll be in the USA near LA during the period of early Aug… If you can help .I can make a quick visit to sort it out… Hope you can help…. Another option.. Is just lowering drop spindles avialble ?
    Thanking you.. Andrew

    • Andrew,

      The 81 is a tricky year and we might be able to help! Tell me if you have king pins or ball joints and if your beams are equal or unequal length?

      Mark

  17. Hi there.
    I woundering if you can help. I’m after lowering ibeams for a 81 f100. Do you have kits available.
    I’ve been told the 81-86 can be a little ticky not sure. I’m located in Australia and have 2 containers with the company I work for leave Nth Carolina per month….which would it be possiable to arrange the inland freight to this location ?…. Look forward to your help…
    best regards
    Andrew

    • Ben,
      The best way to have the parts shipped to Australia is to send us a e-mail to orders@djmsuspension.com with your shipping address and credit card info or if you prefer to email the shipping info and you can call us with the credit card. You can use our web site http://www.djmsuspension.com to see the parts and get information about the kit (the website cannot ship to Australia however).

      Best Regards!
      Mark

  18. love cody’s truck, im looking at buying this kit from djm, i was just wondering if the 3/4 kit will fit on my 78 f250 lwb?? im pretty sure it will but if you could just confirm this that would be great, thanks
    Rolly

    • Rolly,

      The kit will fit only if you have a five-lug wheel pattern. You may have an 8-lug wheel pattern which is has 1-ton suspension parts. Our parts only work on the half ton platform!

      DJM Tech

  19. I have a 1979 f100 429ci. Im wanting 2 get lowerd. I dont want to use the i beam system anymore. is there any other kit available , or what can i modify to fit? i plan on using air bags eventually. Any ideas? the rear will be 4 linked.

    • Tim,

      I read about guys using Mustang II front ends or S-10 front ends, or read about a 1974 LTD front end installed in a 67 F100 in Garcia’s Garage posted in “The Garage” section of this site!

  20. I HAVE A 71 FORD F100 I HAVE PUT A MUSTANGII FRONT END UNDER IT BUT THE ROTATORS THAT CAME WITH THE KIT ARE 5X4.5 I NEED A ROTATOR THAT IS 5X5.5 AND CANT FIND ANYONE WHO HAS THEM WOULD YOU HAPPEN TO KNOW WHERE I CAN GET THE RIGHT ROTATORS FOR MY TRUCK . AND FOR ADVICE DONT EVER BUY ANYTHING FROM AIR BAG IT THEY HAVE NO IDEA WHAT THEY ARE DOING OR MAKING .IF YOU CAN HELP ME I WOULD BE VERY GRATEFULL THANK YOU.. TERRY KILFIAN 775-443-3017….

    • Terry,

      You out of our area of expertise, we know the MustangII front end is popular with hot rod guys, you might try them to see if they can help you find the rotors you want!

      DJM Tech

    • Terry,

      Head on over to http://www.ford-trucks.com/forums/, there’s threads there all about lowering bumpside and dentside trucks and quite a few of those guys have done the Mustang IFS conversion. Someone will be able to point you in the right direction about getting your wheel stud pattern sorted.

      All the best,
      Andrew.

      • hi
        I love the truck, just bought a 1973ish f100 351v8 truck, i would desperately like the full kit inc shocks to lower my truck like this one but i live in england so its a nightmare trying to get hold of the kit.
        can i get it direct from you please. can i get my truck lower than this one, eg shorter coil springs????? what size were the wheels on this they look huge? whats the difference between a pre 72 and a 73 on suspension wise?
        many thanks
        benjamin

        • Benjamin,

          You can get this kit directly from us. Our Factory Store website isn’t set up to ship international, sorry. The cost would be about $760 USD and I am afraid to ship it to you would run around $500+ USD. We ship via UPS and you may be able get a better deal from your side. Let us know what you would like to do, we will try our best to help you get our kit and I would love to do a “Customer Garage” article on your project if you do!

          DJM Tech

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