A Basket-Case Truck Becomes Functional
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Sam Krumrey is a four-wheeler who will dare to be different. How different? All you've got to do is cast an eye toward his 79 Ford F-250 to see clues to that. First of all, it's green. Like, lime green. Eeew! Second, Sam has gone to extremes under the hood. He's swapped in a 428 Cobra Jet, a job he undertook, he says, because You don't see too many people building a Cobra Jet for a truck.
Sam, who wheels his big Ford in the countryside near his home in Robertsville, Missouri, is a mechanic who specializes in both engine and chassis work. So when he first stumbled across a basket-case F-250 in 1995, he was not daunted.
When he bought it, the truck was powered by a 390ci V-8, which was backed up by a four-speed. So Sam set to work, helped by a pack of pals that included Scott and Connie Brasier, Tom Merseal, Kim Kuelker, Wayne Brooks, Leroy Krumrey, Jamie Sommers, and others.
Job one: Lever that 390 outta there, and lower in the Cobra Jet. Not just any old Cobra Jet, though. This one had to make some serious horsepower. To ensure that it would, Sam bored it 0.30-inch oversize, and slid a set of TRW forged 9.8:1 pistons in the eight enlarged holes. He installed a Crane cam with 0.533 (intake)/0.564 (exhaust) lift and 272/284 degrees of duration. With the bottom-end lubricated by a high-pressure oil pump working in a 9-quart oil pan, Sam added Crane adjustable rocker arms and Crower valve springs, and topped all this with Cobra Jet heads fed by one of Barry Grants Demon 750cfm carbs through a Cobra Jet manifold, and evacuated by a set of Stans tri-Y headers and Hooker mufflers. To handle ignition chores, Sam chose a Ford Duraspark distributor with a custom advance curve to work with a Jacobs ignition system that includes a coil and wires.
With his engine complete, Sam tossed the old four-speed and swapped in a sturdy Ford C-6, which remains, with the exception of a shift kit and extra clutches, mostly stock. The transfer case is the same NP205 the truck rolled out of its factory with. But Sam added a Dana 60 in the rear, and finally has found, he says, a suitable Dana 60 for the front. There's a Dana 44 there now, but not for long. Ratios front and rear are 4.56:1. The rear diff contains a Truetrac, and the front benefits from a Lock-Right.
Most of the clearance for a set of 38.5x11x15 Boggers, mounted on 15x10 Hellcats, comes courtesy of a whopping 9-inch lift supplied by extended coils up front and re-arched springs and 4-inch blocks in the rear. Then Sam added Rancho 9000 shocks, Rancho 5000 steering stabilizers, and a drop pitman arm. The remaining height comes from a 2-inch body lift from Performance Manufacturing. Sam topped this off with a front winch bumper from Warn to which he mounted a 12,000-pound MileMarker winch and a rear Outlaw bumper from Fey.
Inside, Sam installed a set of electric seats from a 99 Dodge Ram, a Grant GT steering wheel, a stereo head unit and amps from Kenwood, a set of speakers from Rockford, and finally, a set of Auto Meter gauges.
And he pronounced the job done. What, besides swapping in his new front Dana 60, would he change or do differently? Nothing, he says. It works very well just the way it is.