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2001 Ford F150 - Project Sinatra

Doing It How Frank Would

Dan Ward
Dec 15, 2008
Photographers: Dan Ward
Photo 2/13   |   2001 Ford F150 right Front Angle
Beginning in late '06, Project Sinatra got off to a quick start going from lifted to lowered and ditching the old paint for new color by Spring of '07. What started out as a minor update turned into a full-blown truck project as more and more ideas were thrown around. Before I knew it, the '01 Ford SuperCrew we dubbed as the "Super Pooper" because of its beat appearance, went from neglected parts chaser to show truck daily driver in the blink of an eye. The theme of the truck was luxury, as we tried to turn our Ford into a luxurious yet still sport truck that could compete with the Lincoln LT. You've seen the stories and followed along with the buildup, now check out the truck in its 15 minutes of fame.
Our build started with the guys at MIC in Chino Hills, California, bringing the truck down over 8 inches from its lifted appearance. While at MIC, a new Belltech suspension complete with 2-inch drop spindles, modified coil springs, new shocks, front and rear sway bars, and a hangar/shackle combo was bolted on. New Energy Suspension bushings ensure the truck handles its best at all times. Providing the large rolling stock are 24-inch Giovanna Merano wheels with color-matched center caps and 285/35R24 Pirelli tires. To stop the big wheels, we added a set of SSBC Force 10 big brakes that measure out to 14 inches with 4-piston calipers. The F-150 stops better now than ever before. That was just the beginning. Once the truck was rolling right, we couldn't wait to ditch the '80s paint scheme.
We drove over to Lake Forest, California, where South County Customs calls home and spoke with Max Gilmore about making the Ford look more luxurious. Bouncing ideas back and forth, we opted to go with one bold color. Before any paint was applied, an '03 Lincoln Navigator conversion from VIS Racing was installed. With the carbon fiber fenders, carbon fiber hood, and factory bumper, we were certain the truck would look luxurious. The crew also shaved the rear tailgate handle to make the tailgate smooth, shaved the door handles, and installed the SPAL door poppers and parking aids. Once the truck rolled out of the South County Customs paint booth, the F-150 looked stunning in PPG Vibrance Midnight Sapphire Blue. It was then ready for the Strut wire mesh grille, 8,000K HID kit, and Matrix LED taillights from Sport Truck Direct. Attention was then paid to the bed where Vortex applied its protective bed coating and we topped that off with a Bed Rug for the top-of-the-line look. No truck is complete without an inviting interior and our project truck is no exception.
Photo 9/13   |   2001 Ford F150 left Side Angle
Opening the doors reveals a smoothed and painted dash from South County Customs, two-tone leather and suede seats from Roadwire, and black carpet from JC Whitney resting above the Hushmat-covered floor. Billet pieces really added some elegance to the interior and every part was ordered from UPR Products, with the exception of the billet 3-Oval steering wheel and hub from AIM Industries. Keeping with the luxury theme, we installed a SIMCO instrument cluster with chrome rings. Racing style Roush pedals are from JC Whitney and our headliner/visors were wrapped in black suede thanks to 714 Motorsports.
Photo 10/13   |   Three 10-inch MTX Thunder Round subs were mounted in a painted fiberglass box and wrapped in suede.
Audio is heard from MTX Thunder Axe components powered by two MTX Thunder Elite amps. Three 10-inch MTX Thunder Round subs from Crutchfield are mounted in a fiberglass box built by Audio Toyz in Las Flores, California, and painted by South County Customs. Power is supplied from a Powermaster alternator. A Pioneer AVIC-D3 provides the iPod input, navigation, and DVD output for the 7-inch DEI headrest monitors. Keeping our interior goodies hidden is custom window tint from Erick at Xtreme Tint in Whittier, California. Keeping everything protected is a Viper alarm. We were getting close to completing the truck and our last box to check off was performance.
Lifting the Navigator hood instantly exposes the polished AEM Brute Force intake, Magnuson supercharger, and JBA ceramic headers. What you can't see are the 42 lb/hr Ford Racing fuel injectors, BBK throttle-body, Autolite Iridium spark plugs, and custom computer tune from Steve at Powertrain Dynamics in Huntington Beach. We also added Design Engineering exhaust wrap to the headers and MagnaFlow high-flow cats and exhaust, along with Design Engineering radiator relief and chill charger additives. After Diff Works, in Riverside, California, installed the Precision Gears 4.10 gear set and Auburn Gear limited slip, the truck put down a respectable 301 hp on the Powertrain Dynamics dyno. Not bad for a 4.6L with 94,000 miles on the odometer.
This truck has been in the Truckin' stable for 8 years and during its tenure, it has been airbagged, lifted, lifted some more, and finally static dropped. Three different paint schemes, endless bolt-ons, and mile after mile have been placed on the truck and still it keeps going and going. Another goal of this truck was to show you how a good but neglected truck can remain a good truck with some TLC and some quality parts. We're sure you approve and hopefully you are pumped up to build a truck your way.


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