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  • Hellwig’s 2017 Ford F-350 Goes Everywhere with Military Durability

Hellwig’s 2017 Ford F-350 Goes Everywhere with Military Durability

The Operator

Bryan Fross
Oct 15, 2019
When aftermarket manufacturers want to show off their newest and hottest products, they build a vehicle that allows potential buyers to see them installed on a flashy vehicle. In the case of Mike Hallmark from Hellwig Products and this Ford F-350, he says the whole point is for the truck to perform as it should without seeing a bunch of bulky suspension products underneath. The idea is that a truck with this much lift is undoubtedly going to have a good amount of body roll due to its high center of gravity. The Hellwig Sway Bars installed on this beast are designed to nearly eliminate that body roll and are built to perform under even the most daunting circumstances. The research and development into these products go beyond normal everyday driving. Hellwig Sway Bars are used on several platforms of military vehicles. Their products have even been shot at by multiple caliber weapons, with evidence on their YouTube channel, to test their ability to hold up to a range of weaponry. The Operator F-350 pays homage to the U.S. military with its theme and the multitude of ways it can be utilized for any activity.
Photo 2/40   |   Hellwigs Ford F 350 Rear 3q
Along with the sway bars that Hellwig is widely known for, the Ford touts a beefy suspension with an Icon Vehicle Dynamics 4.5-inch Stage 5 Suspension System as well as Hellwig Big Wig Air Springs and their Auto Leveling Air System with Viair Compressor and Air Tank for adjustability on the fly. To take on the roads—or lack of roads—depending on where they take it, the truck was fit with a set of 17-inch Method Racing NV HD Wheels and 37-inch Falken Wild Peak M/T Off-road Tires. There is also an extra wheel and tire combo mounted in the rear to a Wilco PreRunner Tailgate for easy access. Powering the big Ford is a 6.7L Powerstroke V-8 turbodiesel engine that has been upgraded with MagnaFlow PRO DPF Performance Exhaust and has also been upgraded with Mag-Hytec differential covers and transmission pan.
Photo 3/40   |   Hellwigs Ford F 350 Suspension
Photo 4/40   |   Hellwigs Ford F 350 Hellwig Air System
Photo 5/40   |   Hellwigs Ford F 350 Icon
Photo 6/40   |   Hellwigs Ford F 350 Wheel
This rolling billboard could have had a flashy neon paint scheme that attracted eyes from a mile away like so many Lamborghinis out there, but that just isn't the kind of build this is. The BASF paint sprayed over at LGE-CTS Motorsports with a fade into digital camouflage fits just right with the purposefully built pickup and the overall build theme. To add to that, the Ford has been outfitted with many products with both a purpose and a certain style to accentuate it. The front and rear bumpers were replaced with a set of Fab Fours Vengeance models along with adding Bushwacker Pocket Style Fender Flares and Trail Armor Rocker/Sill Covers. One addition to the truck that isn't very subtle is the Shertek Dragon Bak Toy Dek system which carries a Textron Wildcat X SXS/UTV off-road vehicle. Other additions to the exterior include a Warn Industries Winch on the front bumper as well as a deck winch to pull the Wildcat onto the deck, Amp Research XL retractable steps, T-Rex X-Metal Grille, Whelen Lightbar, Rigid Industries LED Lighting and custom Hellwig side vents from Billet Badges.
On the inside, the cabin has been modified with everything you can think of for adventuring far and beyond to places most people can't or won't ever go. The main change from factory is the seat and interior upholstery material supplied by 5.11 Inc. including numerous tactical style bags for storing all the little things for an off-the-grid adventure. The truck has been set up with a unit from Rugged Radios including one in the truck as well as a radio and headsets in the Wildcat plus two handhelds. The power for the electronics, winches and other accessories comes from two YellowTop Optima Batteries.
Photo 7/40   |   Hellwigs Ford F 350 Interior
Photo 8/40   |   Hellwigs Ford F 350 Interior Seats
As you can see, this Ford was setup to do just about anything if needed. Mike also mentions that the truck has recently been configured to use an ARB Roof Top Tent/Awning, "party deck" as he calls it, as well as at one point carrying a military icon, a 1948 Willys Jeep, instead of the SXS. The go-anywhere, do-anything truck would be great to have for all your adventures and could handle anything you throw at it.
Photo 9/40   |   Hellwigs Ford F 350 Front
Inside the build:
Year/Make/Model: 2017 Ford F-350 Super Duty Lariat
Owner and City/State: Mike Hallmark; Visalia, CA
Chassis:
Suspension: Hellwig Products Front Sway Bar, Rear Sway Bar, Big Wig Air Springs, and Auto Leveling Air System. Icon Vehicle Dynamics 4.5-inch Suspension Stage 5 System, Viair
Shocks: Icon Vehicle Dynamics
Engine: 6.7L Powerstroke V-8 turbodiesel engine with MagnaFlow PRO DPF Performance Exhaust, Optima Batteries.
Transmission: TorqShift six-speed automatic transmission with Mag-Hytec transmission pan.
Rearend: Mag-Hytec differential covers
Body: AMP Research PowerStepXL Retractable Side Steps/Bed Step, T-Rex Grilles X-Metal Grille, Fab Fours Vengeance Front and Rear Bumpers. Auto Ventshade Aeroskin II hood shield, Window trim and headlight covers. Warn Industries 16.5TI-S Winch, Ford 05SD Black Hubs and Pro Vantage 2500 (Deck Winch to pull SXS). Bushwacker Pocket Style Fender Flares and Trail Armor Rocker/Sill Covers, Four Daystar Liquid Cans, Wilco Pre Runner Tail Gate, Rigid Industries LED corner, reverse and rock lights. Sherptek Dragon Bak Toy Dek, Hi Lift Jack, Mounts & Accessories, Krazy Beaver Shovel, Bolt Receiver Lock and miscellaneous locks. Expeditions Essentials Stove/Kitchen, ARB Roof Top Tent and Awning, McLean Metal Works Hitch Hammock, BASF R-M Paint.
Interior:
5.11 Tactical Fabric and bags. Color-matched dash and door panels.
Wheels & Tires:
Wheels: 17-inch Method Racing NV HD
Tires: 37-inch Falken Wild Peak M/T Off Road Tires
Other:
Textron Wild Cat X SXS/UTV with SSV Works Head Unit and Speakers, Trigger Wireless Switch Solution, Buggy Whips 2foot Whip for truck and 6foot for SXS, Assault Industries Detachable UTV Steering Wheel and Side Mirrors. Rugged Radios in both vehicles and two handheld radios.

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