Dec 30, 2015 update to the Ford F-350 Ramp Truck project car

Meet the Long Rig

The added trailer behind the ramp truck makes a very long rig.

The time came once again for one of our project car test days at the Florida International Rally and Motorsports Park. With the track almost two hours away from our office, we decided towing most of our projects would be the most responsible decision. And what better to tow with than another one of our projects.

The ramp truck had only recently been fully repaired from its perilous trip home, but we fired it up nonetheless. This trip would add another level of difficulty for the ‘70s hardware to endure. We would carry one car on the back of the truck and tow a second car on a trailer behind it.

So how did it do? Pretty well, actually. Nothing broke and it carried both cars to the track and back safely. However, the truck is very noticeably underpowered. Other than that, we have no complaints when towing with this long rig.

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Comments

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irish44j
irish44j UltimaDork
12/30/15 2:25 p.m.

you florida guys and your flat topography....

RossD
RossD UltimaDork
12/30/15 3:22 p.m.

[cough]powerstroke[cough]

ScottRA21
ScottRA21 HalfDork
1/1/16 12:06 a.m.

In reply to RossD:

[cough]Detroit[cough]

Fueled by Caffeine
Fueled by Caffeine MegaDork
1/1/16 10:49 p.m.

4bt cummins out of a bread van.... Sure you'd lose some fillings and the whole front end would need to be beefed up...

On second thought, how about just a better v8.

jstein77
jstein77 UltraDork
7/18/16 1:42 p.m.

How come you haven't done a project update for the 390 engine rebuild yet?

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
7/18/16 2:06 p.m.
Fueled by Caffeine wrote: 4bt cummins out of a bread van.... Sure you'd lose some fillings and the whole front end would need to be beefed up... On second thought, how about just a better v8.

Or a proper straight six Cummins, although I'm not cool enough for the engine code. The classic 12 valve 5.9, I think that's the beast. Still, it's a heavy bastard.

I'm thinking an 454 or 502 HO crate from GMPP is the right answer. Yeah, it's a Chevy, I don't care. I have a GMPP catalog on my desk and not a Ford one I'm sure there's a Ford equivalent. I mean, you could go all Car Craft and build something crazy for about $500 - but this ramp truck is a tool. Tools don't need to be projects. Just stuff a new engine in there with a two-year warranty and spend your time on the Spitfire.

rslifkin
rslifkin HalfDork
7/18/16 2:11 p.m.
Keith Tanner wrote: Or a proper straight six Cummins, although I'm not cool enough for the engine code. The classic 12 valve 5.9, I think that's the beast. Still, it's a heavy bastard.

That would be the 6BT (6 cylinder, B series, Turbocharged). The 4BT is basically the same thing cut down to 4 cylinders.

Or you could step up a size category and run the bigger 8.3 liter wet-liner Cummins 6CTA (6 cyl, C series, Turbo / Aftercooled) or a DT466, etc.

dropstep
dropstep Dork
7/18/16 2:37 p.m.

Call frpp and order a nice 460 for it.

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
7/18/16 2:45 p.m.
rslifkin wrote:
Keith Tanner wrote: Or a proper straight six Cummins, although I'm not cool enough for the engine code. The classic 12 valve 5.9, I think that's the beast. Still, it's a heavy bastard.

That would be the 6BT (6 cylinder, B series, Turbocharged). The 4BT is basically the same thing cut down to 4 cylinders.

Or you could step up a size category and run the bigger 8.3 liter wet-liner Cummins 6CTA (6 cyl, C series, Turbo / Aftercooled) or a DT466, etc.

So you can't tell a 12-valve 5.9 apart from a 6.7 from the code? Weird. I know of the 4BT, but I'd never dissected the code.

If you're gonna do an engine swap, you might as well go for the iconic one. A 5.9 should provide enough motive power, an 8.3 might be slight overkill Bonus points for finding a way to keep it from rolling coal.

But really, a big block V8 should do the trick just fine because it'll never meet the Rockies.

rslifkin
rslifkin HalfDork
7/18/16 2:47 p.m.
Keith Tanner wrote: Bonus points for finding a way to keep it from rolling coal.

I don't know exactly how the injection pump on the 6BT handles it, but I most have a way to limit fueling as the turbo spools. Ideally if you get that set right and don't have it over-fueled in general, you'd end up with just a little light smoke when you first punch it from a stop while it spools and then pretty clean after that (very light haze if you're really pushing the limits of power without adding more boost).

I've seen people turn up the 12v a good bit without them getting particularly smoky, so it's definitely possible.

iceracer
iceracer PowerDork
7/18/16 6:07 p.m.

Underpowered by todays standards.

People weren't in such a hurry back then.

Chadeux
Chadeux Reader
7/18/16 6:12 p.m.
Keith Tanner wrote: So you can't tell a 12-valve 5.9 apart from a 6.7 from the code? Weird. I know of the 4BT, but I'd never dissected the code.

You can. the 12 valve 5.9 is the 6bt. 6.7 is ISB6.7.

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
7/18/16 6:21 p.m.
iceracer wrote: Underpowered by todays standards. People weren't in such a hurry back then.

Yeah, I've driven my 1966 Land Rover over the Rockies.

At 25 mph, on the shoulder of I-70, with multiple stops to cool down.

A bit more power than 38 rwhp might have been appreciated.

rslifkin
rslifkin HalfDork
7/18/16 7:07 p.m.
Chadeux wrote:
Keith Tanner wrote: So you can't tell a 12-valve 5.9 apart from a 6.7 from the code? Weird. I know of the 4BT, but I'd never dissected the code.
You can. the 12 valve 5.9 is the 6bt. 6.7 is ISB6.7.

And the 24v 5.9 is the ISB 5.9.

dean1484
dean1484 MegaDork
7/18/16 7:52 p.m.
Ed Higginbotham wrote: The time came once again for one of our project car test days at the [Florida International Rally and Motorsports Park](http://www.gorally.com/). With the track almost two hours away from our office, we decided towing most of our projects would be the most responsible decision. And what better to tow with than another one of our projects. The ramp truck had only recently been fully repaired from its perilous trip home, but we fired it up nonetheless. This trip would add another level of difficulty for the '70s hardware to endure. We would carry one car on the back of the truck and tow a second car on a trailer behind it. So how did it do? Pretty well, actually. Nothing broke and it carried both cars to the track and back safely. However, the truck is very noticeably underpowered. Other than that, we have no complaints when towing with this long rig. Not a subscriber? Each magazine contains even more details on our project cars. Subscribe to Grassroots Motorsports now.

Where is the rest of the story? Not trying to be a wise guy were. I went to the link and everything in the link was in the post. Did I miss something? I want to read more about your adventure towing.

crewperson
crewperson New Reader
7/18/16 8:40 p.m.

I've wondered about the "rest of the story" link a couple of times here. It seems there never is a rest of the story.

edizzle89
edizzle89 Dork
7/19/16 7:37 a.m.
rslifkin wrote:
Keith Tanner wrote: Bonus points for finding a way to keep it from rolling coal.

I don't know exactly how the injection pump on the 6BT handles it, but I most have a way to limit fueling as the turbo spools. Ideally if you get that set right and don't have it over-fueled in general, you'd end up with just a little light smoke when you first punch it from a stop while it spools and then pretty clean after that (very light haze if you're really pushing the limits of power without adding more boost).

I've seen people turn up the 12v a good bit without them getting particularly smoky, so it's definitely possible.

its harder to keep from rolling coal with a 12v since its all mechanical, the later 24v 5.9 is electronic and can keep the coal to minimum. with the 12v you basically set your fueling for your max RPM/boost, so basically anytime you are WOT and under your max it will still be fueling for max RPM/boost which will roll coal until you get up to it.

Tractor pull trucks are a good example of this, the old mechanical engines blow black smoke until they hit there max boost and then it clears up, the guys with newer electronic stuff can make just as much power with precise fueling and very little coal rolling, although there are tunes for newer diesels that make them blow black smoke like the old mechanicals, you know... for the bro's...

rslifkin
rslifkin HalfDork
7/19/16 7:46 a.m.

In reply to edizzle89:

On the tractor pull setups, I thought they tended to crank up or remove the smoke limiter on the injection pumps to over-fuel them while the turbo is still spooling up to get it to spool a little faster.

dculberson
dculberson PowerDork
7/19/16 9:50 a.m.

Long pig is delicious! (rereads title) oh, never mind...

alfadriver
alfadriver MegaDork
7/19/16 9:57 a.m.
dropstep wrote: Call frpp and order a nice 460 for it.

And there's a Lemons build thread to start with.

What could go wrong?

edizzle89
edizzle89 Dork
7/19/16 10:02 a.m.
rslifkin wrote: In reply to edizzle89: On the tractor pull setups, I thought they tended to crank up or remove the smoke limiter on the injection pumps to over-fuel them while the turbo is still spooling up to get it to spool a little faster.

it usually depends on how they tune them, some people with electronic injection still just dump fuel like the old mechanicals since im sure its easier then actually dialing it in. i have seen many diesel pull trucks that never let out more then a few puffs of black smoke and pull just as well as the coal rolling trucks

rslifkin
rslifkin HalfDork
7/19/16 10:03 a.m.
edizzle89 wrote:
rslifkin wrote: In reply to edizzle89: On the tractor pull setups, I thought they tended to crank up or remove the smoke limiter on the injection pumps to over-fuel them while the turbo is still spooling up to get it to spool a little faster.

it usually depends on how they tune them, some people with electronic injection still just dump fuel like the old mechanicals since im sure its easier then actually dialing it in. i have seen many diesel pull trucks that never let out more then a few puffs of black smoke and pull just as well as the coal rolling trucks

Yeah, it definitely depends on how much work they put into it. Dumping fuel is just the easy way to get quick spool and such if you don't care about durability.

bentwrench
bentwrench Dork
7/19/16 11:29 a.m.

Pulling is about keeping the cylinder temps down while burning as much fuel as possible. You will notice that as the turbo comes up they actually blow a flame out the exhaust, and then the water injection comes on an the smoke turns grey from the steam. Those guys could not run those motors like that without the water.

Wall-e
Wall-e MegaDork
7/19/16 4:12 p.m.

I'd stick with the 390 of it was in good shape or swap in a 460 if it's not and add an overdrive to the tranny. Those trucks hauled racecars all over the country like that without issues. It was cheaper to keep an ashtray full of black beauties so you never have to stop instead of adding more power.

iceracer
iceracer PowerDork
7/19/16 5:40 p.m.

Two race cars and a trailer makes a pretty good load.

Vigo
Vigo PowerDork
7/19/16 7:38 p.m.
Two race cars and a trailer makes a pretty good load.

Even two particularly light cars and a particularly light trailer!

gearheadmb
gearheadmb HalfDork
7/20/16 6:31 a.m.

I've seen 2wd super duties with 7.3 diesels sell pretty cheap. That is probably the direction I would go for the swap. Give it the Indian treatment, use every part of the carcass. Swap in the od tranny and rear axle. I think those had discs in the back.

Ed Higginbotham
Ed Higginbotham Associate Editor
7/20/16 8:38 a.m.
jstein77 wrote: How come you haven't done a project update for the 390 engine rebuild yet?

Engine is actually just now being added to the truck. And if you missed any updates, it might be because the ramp truck's project profile was moved to the Classic Motorsports site.

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