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Old 02-05-2011, 10:49 AM   #1
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TV Questions - 1980 Ford F100

Hello all,

I'm currently In the process of redoing a 1980 Ford F100 Flareside...




It's really an F150 as far as the suspension and brakes are concerned. It had the old 300 six (great engine), automatic and it's 2WD. My plans for it include swapping it to 4x4, building what will be a strong 429 big block out of a '70 Thunderbird for it, upgrading the brakes and suspention, and I plan on investing in a Hensley Arrow. The whole truck will be getting a full going over and everything rebuilt.

My question is, would this handle up to a 31' Airstream? I've heard from a lot of people I'm better off upgrading to a larger truck, mostly because of the brakes, however...

My dad has towed his '76 Caravanner 25' with a '96 Land Rover, which is equipped with electric brakes and a Hensley. It only has a 100" wheel base, and it handled the trailer with no problems. My truck has a 117" wheelbase, and will be equipped in the same manner.

Does this sound possible, or should I in fact look for a heavier truck? I don't mind investing the time and the money where it counts to do this, but I also don't want to proceed down that road if what I end up with will be less then what will do the job.

Any advice is appreciated.
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Old 02-05-2011, 11:58 AM   #2
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1981 27' Excella II
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Its a nice truck, but I wouldnt try to tow with it. I started off with an 87 Dodge half ton 4x4 short bed about the same w heelbase as yours. For me its the wheelbase. The longer, the better. The short truck ride left a lot to be desired.
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Old 02-05-2011, 12:55 PM   #3
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Nice Truck

That is a nice little truck.
I am also leary of the shorter wb for any long drives or tow trips.


If you are going to rebuild the truck anyway, why not start off with an extended cab longbox F150, and keep this nice shortbox for a Sunday driver? 4x4's are generally geared wrong for long distance driving?
I bought this beauty in 2004 for $500, top of the line equipped, changed the oil and did a 7000 mile cross country rtn, and just so comfortable on the road. (had to buy a battery in Morden Manitoba)
I have not hauled a heavy trailer with it as I have no tlr brake system on it, but sure like the truck!
BTW - this truck spent the first 17 years in Inuvik, NWT.

http://maps.google.com/maps?q=68.304...,0.394478&z=12
Dave
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Old 02-05-2011, 01:20 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by masseyfarm View Post
That is a nice little truck.
I am also leary of the shorter wb for any long tow trips.


If you are going to rebuild the truck anyway, why not start off with an extended cab longbox F150, and keep this nice shortbox for a Sunday driver? 4x4's are generally geared wrong for long distance driving?
I do love the old SuperCab trucks (your truck looks gorgeous Dave, I love the old school red and white tu-tone)... I've become somewhat attached to this Flareside. I'm only going to have one vehicle, so I figured I'd rebuilt it to suit my purpose. Re-gear, locker, heavy duty rebuild on the trans, etc. I'm aware the wheelbase is a bit on the short side, however, I figured a sway control hitch setup such as a Hensley would help to keep everything in order. It sure worked wonders on my father's truck.
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Old 02-05-2011, 01:59 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by jmdotter View Post
...Any advice is appreciated...
hi jm' and welcome.

there is no mechanical problem that can't be solved...

with enough money and a large napkin.

so YES if enough bits are upgraded to the appropriate capacity, that truck can tow...

the real question is how much $$ are u willing to spend?

u make no mention of what year/model of 30/1 foot stream.

from the 60s to now their width and weights vary (have increased) by 4000-5000 lbs...

so a new 30 is an entirely different beast from a 60s/70s 30 footer.

regardless, even a brand new giant stream or for that matter a 5th wheel could be towed with that truck.

IF u wanna do a dually conversion (it would really be a flared side truck then!)

but even after having done a proper and complete upgrade,

there may be questions about capacity/safety and liability...

should U ever have a calamity involving other people or property.

just sayin'
________

using a pivot point projection hitch apparatus will solve the wheel base issue,

so consider a PP if you really wanna do this right.

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f464...ide-57179.html

rumor is, they are having a 300$ sale/discount now, before the season kicks into full speed.

and that 300 $ will come in handy during the truck conversion...

cheers
2air'
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Old 02-05-2011, 02:02 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmdotter View Post
I do love the old SuperCab trucks (your truck looks gorgeous Dave, I love the old school red and white tu-tone)... I've become somewhat attached to this Flareside. I'm only going to have one vehicle, so I figured I'd rebuilt it to suit my purpose. Re-gear, locker, heavy duty rebuild on the trans, etc. I'm aware the wheelbase is a bit on the short side, however, I figured a sway control hitch setup such as a Hensley would help to keep everything in order. It sure worked wonders on my father's truck.
Sway control did not help me.
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Old 02-05-2011, 02:23 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by 2airishuman View Post
hi jm' and welcome.

there is no mechanical problem that can't be solved...

with enough money and a large napkin.

so YES if enough bits are upgraded to the appropriate capacity, that truck can tow...

the real question is how much $$ are u willing to spend?

u make no mention of what year/model of 30/1 foot stream.

from the 60s to now their width and weights vary (have increased) by 4000-5000 lbs...

so a new 30 is an entirely different beast from a 60s/70s 30 footer.

regardless, even a brand new giant stream or for that matter a 5th wheel could be towed with that truck.

IF u wanna do a dually conversion (it would really be a flared side truck then!)

but even after having done a proper and complete upgrade,

there may be questions about capacity/safety and liability...

should U ever have a calamity involving other people or property.

just sayin'
________

using a pivot point projection hitch apparatus will solve the wheel base issue,

so consider a PP if you really wanna do this right.

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f464...ide-57179.html

rumor is, they are having a 300$ sale/discount now, before the season kicks into full speed.

and that 300 $ will come in handy during the truck conversion...

cheers
2air'
'69-82 Airstream 31', preferable side bath is what I will most likely be looking for. I plan on gutting it and my father and I rebuilding/customizing it on the inside after we restore his '76.

I'm willing to spend enough to get the job done right, if it can be done with this truck. I'm not a mechanic by trade, but I do all my own work, and nothing really scares me. That's going to save me a fortune.

- John
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Old 02-05-2011, 02:48 PM   #8
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That is a nice truck, John. The main issue is the short wheel base, but if you use the Hensley, it will help. You will have a much rougher ride with that wheel base though.

Dennis
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