Friday, May 18, 2018
Built Ford Tough? Nah, Built ArmorThane Tough
Built Ford Tough is a good slogan but when it's not as tough as I need it to be then I gotta make it tougher. That's why I spend about as much time working on my truck as I do driving it. For example three weeks ago I went offroading with some buddies. It had just rained, and it was pretty slippery out there. Luckily I had a brand new set of mud crawlers on which got me through most of it, but my truck just wasn't lifted enough to get me through the deep stuff.
I ended up hitting a hidden pothole of the muddiest kind; this led to three hours of troubleshooting a whole lot of elbow grease and a broken axle. After getting the truck towed back to my house, I took a shower and got cleaned up. Then I got online and ordered a new replacement axle along with some new shocks and a six-inch lift kit. Three days later my truck was up on jack stands, and I was on my mechanic's creeper wrenching away.
First things first I had to repair the broken axle. Off came the tires then I started removing the arms and axle assembly. This was not easy since the shaft had snapped and bent upwards into the vehicle. I actually had to get an acetylene torch and cut it out! After much work and a few beers, I had the new axle in. Then I went to work on the suspension; since the tires were already off and the arms were loosened, it was pretty easy to get in there and swap the shocks.
After I was done with that, I put everything else back together and boy she was good as new no better than new. My truck could now get through the thick stuff more comfortable, but it wasn't necessarily any tougher. So to avoid snapping another axle during my weekend wheelie sessions I cut and welded a diamond plated skid shield to the bottom of my truck. My cherry on top was the ArmorThane bedliner I had installed. This was a nice break, as I was able to relax, open a beer and sit back in the lawn chair I brought along with me to the ArmorThane installer's shop with me. You talk about good-looking, this bedliner really made the difference, and I get more compliments on it than anything else I have on my truck. That's why I say Ford tough? Nah, this truck is ArmorThane tough!