2015 Ford F-350 Dark Knight
Impressive F-350 Is All Attitude...and All Work!
After the initial shock caused by the elevation and 22.5-inch big rig wheels on Carl Fick’s ’15 Ford F-350, people usually peg his rig as just another “show truck.” In reality, however, Carl’s large-and-in-charge ride is used daily as a workhorse and is filled with one-off owner-built parts and cool ideas that separate it from the pack. Carl hauls and tows just about everything with the big Ford, and he can do anything from 4x4 rescues to heavy hauling.
At first glance, it’s easy to mistake Carl’s Ford for an F-450, but it’s actually a Lariat-edition F-350. The first thing Carl knew he wanted for his pickup was a set of 22.5-inch 10-lug wheels, which would be next to impossible to shove under a stock-height truck. When it came to a lift, Carl went straight to the bottom of the page and ordered a 10-inch Fabtech lift, with additional shock spacers, resulting in closer to 12 inches of lift. The rear has Fabtech springs with custom-mounted Air Lift air springs and 5.5-inch Pro Comp lift blocks.
The huge lift was necessary in order to clear the mammoth 295/75R22.5 Goodyear tires and still maintain a full turning radius. Since the truck came as an eight-lug, however, some work needed to be done. Carl sought out Tennessee Wheel & Tire, which built custom front spacers that added a whopping 5 inches of track width to the front end, and converted the truck over to a 10-lug setup. The rear spacers were also from Tennessee and designed so the dualie rear would match the front of the truck.
With the truck's elevation resting comfortably right below the clouds, Carl still had a few body modifications to perform, that, like the rest of the truck, would combine both form and function. Carl modified the grille for LED lightbars and added a Winch Ready Bumpers front bumper, Smittybilt 15.5K synthetic rope winch, and custom tow hooks. Carl also built light pods in the rear bumper for illumination and welded an E-Track hook system onto the bedrails for tie-downs. The front of the bed was heavily reinforced for any shifting loads, and the final touch was F-450 rear fenders, which came off of an armored vehicle.
At this point, Carl had the Ford nailed down with an intimidating stance and some well-engineered work upgrades, but there was still something missing—more power! While the factory Fords are far from pushovers at 440 hp, Carl went a step further and added an SCT programmer with custom tuning, a Flo-Pro 5-inch exhaust, and an AFE intake.
To put his money where his mouth is, Carl sent us photos of the big Ford hauling cars, equipment, and even a restored ambulance. Despite the truck’s insane lift, extra weight, and oversized wheel and tire setup, Carl has proven the Ford has no problem hauling the mail—or anything else that comes along.
SpecSheet:Year/Make/Model: ’15 Ford F-350
Owner: Carl Fick
Hometown: Chico, California
Engine: 6.7L Power Stroke V-8
Odometer: 31,000 miles
Induction: AFE intake
Exhaust: 5-inch Flo-Pro
Fueling: SCT Livewire with custom tuning
Horsepower/Torque: 550 hp/1,200 lb-ft
Suspension: 10-inch Fabtech lift with 1-inch Daystar spacer and Pro Comp steering stabilizer (front), 5.5-inch Pro Comp blocks with Fabtech springs, custom Air Lift airbag setup, and owner-built sway bar setup (rear); custom spacers for front and rear 10-lug conversion by Tennessee Wheel & Tire
Interior: Factory, with SCT Livewire dash monitor
Exterior/Accessories: F-450 fenders, Winch Ready front bumper with a Smittybilt 15.5K winch, custom light pods in the grille and rear bumper, reinforced bed with E-Track system
Wheels: 22.5x8.25 Alcoa
Tires: 295/75R22.5 Goodyear G622
Fun Fact: When asked if his Ford was for sale, Carl responded, “Never!! Unless somebody wants to trade me a Lamborghini.”