Upgrading your front suspension to a custom independent front suspension (IFS) may seem like a pain in the rear to most, but what you get from the IFS is ride comfort plus the added performance and handling characteristics that far out weight the hassle of installation.

From the factory most ’50s trucks came with a straight-axle that was great for carrying the load of the heavy inline-six or towing the horse trailer, boat, etc. As time passed, engineers found that an IFS suspension on a truck gave a car like feel that every truck owner desired. The ability to adjust Camber, Caster, and Toe highly reduced tire wear and bumpsteer plus made the ’60s Chevy trucks handle a lot nicer than that of the strait-axle days. But the IFS of yesteryear was still lacking something that wouldn’t make it into production trucks for many years to come. I am talking about a rack-and-pinion–type steering system that takes away the sloppy feeling that used steering boxes give you. You know, the wandering wheel or sawing action from the drivers hands needed to keep the truck on the road. This does not mean steering boxes are junk but, in my opinion, the option of rack-and-pinion on a aftermarket suspension is a good one.

Lucky for gals and us classic truck guys, Fatman Fabrications figured out IFS systems a long time ago and hundreds, if not thousands, of systems have been installed to our benefit. I chose to install the Fatman IFS with 60-½ track width for the extra stability, and after all the measurements it was not all that bad to put in. I knew I wanted adjustability with ride height and to be able to tune my shocks, so I contacted Ride Tech to go over the options on the new coilover systems they just came out with. I ended up with the new Ride Tech T/A coilovers that I will be able to adjust the stance, rebound, low and high compression.

Flaming River has also released a brand new rack-and-pinion into their line. The rack features a new design that is a four-inch extended body and 12 pounds lighter than the mustang II standard rack. So if you made up your mind to install an IFS, follow along and hopefully your install goes as smooth as mine did. Good luck. CT

SOURCE
Miller Electric
1635 W. Spencer Street
Appleton
WI  54912
920-734-9821
http://www.millerwelds.com
RideTech
350 S. St. Charles Street
Jasper
IN  47546
812-481-4787
http://www.ridetech.com
Flaming River
800 Poertner Dr.
Berea
OH  44017
800-648-8022
http://www.flamingriver.com
Deuces Wild Hot Rods
Fillmore
CA
805-524-5724
http://www.deuceswildhotrodsinc.
com
Fatman Fabrications
8621-C Fairview Road, Highway 218
Charlotte
NC  28227
704-545-0369
http://www.fatmanfab.com
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