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  6. Installing a 3.5-inch Readylift kit on a ’09-’14 Ford F-150

Installing a 3.5-inch Readylift kit on a ’09-’14 Ford F-150

Our Project begins with a lift, EBC Brake Upgrade, and wheels & tires from Fuel Offroad

If you've been reading Truckin for a while, then you know that we're not the type that lets a lot of time go by in between projects. After wrapping up a couple lifted GM builds, we figured it was high time to get a Ford in the mix. We happened to have a bone stock 2010 Ford F-150 SuperCrew XLT waiting in the wings for a whole host of real-world upgrades. That means we're going to make this truck a lot better looking and a lot nicer to drive without even coming close to breaking the bank. On this truck, the interior was dirty, and the bed was pretty beat up, but other than a couple dents and scratches, the rest of the exterior looked pretty good. Of course, all of the chrome would be going away, but that is a story for another day. For this installment, we will be focusing on getting the suspension and brakes looking and performing better than ever and upgrading the wheels and tires.

The Readylift SST 3.5-inch lift kit fits 2009-13 Ford F150 2WD and 4WD trucks and includes tubular steel Control Arms with heavy duty ball joints. The CNC-machined billet lift spacers feature a unique offset bolt design engineered to position the strut into the stock position. This translates into proper suspension clearance and guarantees the truck to ride like stock. Also included is a machined billet spacer that installs between the top of the spring and the bottom of the strut hat to pre-load the spring. Finally, the kit includes OEM style cast iron rear block, as well as a carrier bearing spacer to maintain correct driveshaft angle. This combo allows for up to 35-inch tires. Best of all, there is no cutting of OEM Parts or welding, factory ride is maintained, and Readylift provides a limited lifetime warranty.

Our latest project was this 2010 Ford F-150 SuperCrew XLT. We have big plans for it, like getting rid of all that chrome and maybe even taking some cues from the Raptor, but we decided to start by getting the truck to sit a little higher off the ground and get rid of that factory rake.

You've seen us use EBC brakes many times before on these pages, and the reason is simple: It is cheap insurance for your truck, and you get great bang for the buck because the high-carbon slotted brake rotors and Green Stuff pads look good behind the wheels. And they also provide much better stopping power than your old warped rotors and worn pads. Plus, you're working on the suspension anyway! Another great brand that we've earned plenty of frequent flyer miles with is Fuel Offroad. Their desert-inspired wheel designs are always an easy choice when we're looking to finish off our projects. In this instance, we chose the 18-inch Vectors in black. And while we were there, we also opted for Fuel Gripper A/T tires in LT295/70R18.

Once all of our components arrived, we headed out to Westminster, California, to New Century Tire, where Junior and the crew performed the install in just a few hours. Soon, we were back on the pavement, and the lifted and leveled out stance, along with the "almost 35s," made a huge difference in the way this F-150 looked and drove. We've got big plans for this truck, so make sure you check back right here soon and see everything else we have in store for this Ford!

The Readylift SST 3.5-inch lift kit (PN 69-2302) comes complete with tubular control arms with heavy duty ball joints, billet lift spacers, a machined billet pre-load spacer cast iron rear block and U-bolt kit, and a carrier-bearing spacer to maintain correct driveshaft angle.
EBC's high-carbon blade-slotted rotors feature double the normal carbon levels, extra silicone for heat stability, and a bi-directional fine blade slot pattern for fast degassing and reduced brake wind noise. The Green Stuff heavy duty 7000 Series brake pads are made with Kevlar fiber to deliver powerful stopping and less dust, plus totally silent braking with triple layer wolverine shims. Break-in surface coating applied on all pads ensures fast pad bed-in and perfect brakes right from installation.
One of our favorite tire designs from Fuel Offroad is the D579 Vector. We ordered up a set or 18x9s with a zero offset in matte black.
The tires also came from Fuel Offroad. The Gripper A/Ts feature an aggressive, high-void all-terrain tread and a stiff sidewall to help prevent punctures and bruises under the tread and in the sidewall. It's a tough, good-looking tire that we ordered in the "almost a 35" size of LT295/70R18.
We showed up bright and early at New Century Tire with donuts in hand, and the crew wasted no time getting the truck on the rack and removing the stock wheels.
Before we tore into the front suspension, we inspected the stock components for wear.
The first item removed was the caliper, which was hung out of the way for the duration of the install.
Then the factory rotors followed, except they went into the scrap bin.
First, we removed the tie rod end from the upright, along with the ABS and brake lines where they were attached. Then we broke the upper ball joint loose from the upright.
With the upright laying out the way (but still attached to the lower control arm), we removed the upper strut mounting nuts.
At this point, we realized the sway bar end link was holding the lower control arm up too high, so we temporarily removed it.
The lower arm now dropped low enough to remove the strut, then the lower mounting bolt was removed and the strut came right out.
A spring compressor was used to remove the spring from the strut.
The Readylift billet preload spacer was slipped into place under the top of the strut.
Soon, the spring and strut were reunited on the spring compressor.
Now, the billet lift spacers were bolted to the top of the strut and ready for installation.
But first we needed to remove the factory control arm from the frame while we had some extra space.
The Readylift tubular upper control arm was bolted right back up to the stock location.
We lifted the strut assembly back into place and started the mounting nuts to hold it in place.
Now the upright could be bolted up to the new ball joint.
Then we reattached the strut to the lower control arm.
We then reunited the tie rod end with the upright.
The EBC slotted rotor was slid into place on the hub. We like the look of the new slot design.
Next, the brake caliper bracket was bolted back in place, and the EBC Green Stuff pads were loaded in.
The caliper needed to be spread open, and then it was slipped into place and bolted down. And with that, the front end was complete.
Moving to the rear, we were simply adding blocks, so we jumped right in and buzzed the nuts off the U-bolts.
We loosened up the U-bolts on the other side just enough so this side would drop down a hair more, then we slipped the factory-style steel block in place, dropped the new U-bolts in place, and loosely attached the nuts so we could do the other side.
When the new U-bolts were torqued down, we moved on to removing the rear caliper and rotor. Luckily the E-brake shoes were in good shape.
The EBC rotor was mounted up to the axle.
We installed the caliper brackets next, then loaded the calipers and bolted them in place.
At this point, the rear of the truck was looking good. We just had one small mod in the middle of the truck.
Readylift includes this billet carrier-bearing spacer that helps maintain the proper driveshaft angle when dealing with a two-piece shaft.
The Fuel Gripper A/T tires were mounted to the Fuel Vector Wheels by the talented New Century crew.
We headed straight to the balancer and the wheel and tire balanced out with a relatively small amount of weight.
The new Fuel combo was mounted up to the truck with matching black lugs. Then we moved the truck over to the alignment rack where the crew got the truck perfectly aligned.
What a difference a day makes! We are just getting started with the upgrades to this F-150, but man, this truck looks great already! The Readylift 3.5-inch SST kit is only an extremely important first step.
The Fuel Vector and Fuel Gripper A/T were also a great addition. The 34.5-ish height of the tires and 18-inch wheels are proportioned perfectly. The next step is to get rid of all that chrome in the shot! Stay tuned.
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Source Box:

Readylift Suspensions
877.759.9991
readylift.com

Fuel Offroad
800.959.1969
fueloffroad.com

EBC Brakes
855.EBC.BRAKES
shopebcbrakes.com

New Century Tire
714.901.1337
newcenturytire.com