FORD FOCUS FAQs
Q: Which Ford engine will work for this conversion?
A: Ford part #M-6007-B51 5.0L / 302 320HP or Ford part #M-6007-XE3 5.0L/302 345HP; these are new crate engine assemblies less manifold and carburetor. This engine set up is preferred because of the short water pump. If an older engine is used the short serpentine belt and water pump kit must be used – part #M-8501-A50.
Q: What about transmission?
A: Ford part #M-7003-Z T5 speed transmission. If you want automatic a C-4 transmission will work.
Q: What rear axle can I use?
A: Ford part #M4006-B373 8.8” Mustang axle. This rear end is out of a Mustang 5.0 and goes in unaltered (it doesn’t have to be narrowed). We re-drilled the 5-bolt pattern to the Focus 4 bolt pattern and used the Focus wheels.
Q: Will stock exhaust manifolds work?
A: No. We have special headers in our parts list.
Q: If I use a standard transmission do I use my original hydraulic clutch stuff?
A: No. We have converted to a cable operated manual clutch set up.
Q: Since this was originally a front wheel drive, what goes on with the front end?
A: We originally thought this would be a major hurdle, but this conversion – although complicated in thought – worked out to be a fairly simple operation. We retained the original struts, brakes, springs and lower a-arms. The original front suspension and engine mount crossmember is discarded and a new suspension crossmember is part of the install kit.
The original rear steer rack will be replaced with a new Mustang front steer rack & pinion and mounted to the new crossmember. The next modification is the hub & spindle assemblies. We have a front steer & hub modification kit, which includes a spud that replaces the original splined drive and a bolt on billet aluminum front steer conversion which retains all the stock geometry and correct akerman angle. There is also rack & pinion steering extension kits that must be used.
Q: How much work is involved with the whole set up?
A: The kit is all bolt in – no welding. That’s a hard one to answer depending on your skill level. If a person was able to work on the project full time, I would estimate between 100 to 150 hours.
Q: How much would it cost me?
A: That is even harder to answer. Our East coast dealer in Florida (Tee’s Customs 1-877-823-8826) also installs and he figures a first class conversion with new parts is about $20,000.00. The conversion parts, less engine, transmission and rear end purchased from us would cost about $5,500.00. That would include the bolt in engine cradle and transmission mounts, modified suspension crossmember, front steer & hub modification kit, sway bars, rack & pinion steering, alternator and bracket, clutch kit, steering shaft kit, rack & pinion extension kit, transmission cover, fuel tank, headers, rear end crossmember, 4-Bar kit and shocks & springs.
This kit has been designed to be installed as a bolt in so the average person with some mechanical skills could do the conversion at home. There are holes to be drilled and some metal trimming here and there. The crossmember and brackets are installed in place using original boltholes for placement. Pre-drilled holes in all brackets are then used as drill pilots for a simple installation procedure.
Q: Have you used any other engine for the conversion?
A: Yes, we now have a kit for the 4.6L 4-cam Cobra Mustang engine and we will soon be looking at the single overhead cam engine.
Please Note: Any electrical, fuel or cooling system upgrades are to be completed by the end user.
INDEPENDENT FRONT SUSPENSION
Q: Will your IFS fit my car?
A: Our IFS will fit just about any non-unibody design car or truck if your frame and hub dimensions fit within our parameters.
Q: What are those parameters?
A: There are 3 things we need to know.
- 1. Outside frame rail width at axle centerline
- 2. Hub to hub width (wheel flange to wheel flange)
- 3. Fender clearance
Q: What is fender clearance?
A: Fender clearance is usually only applied in the late '20's and early '30's cars, when fenders were bolted to the top of the frame rail.
Q: How do I determine fender clearance?
A: If your car applies to this rule – we need to know how far away our upper a-arm needs to be away from the outside edge of the frame rail to avoid inner fender interference. Our upper a-arm pivot is 6" above the bottom of your frame. Put a straight edge or ruler on the bottom of frame – out to tire side. At top of straight edge measure 6" up. Slide measuring device along straight edge until top of 6" does not interfere with fender. At that point measure how far the clearance is from outside frame rail. That is your fender clearance.
Q: What if I don't know my hub width?
A: We can figure that out, but we do need your outside frame rail width. Add 29" to your outside frame rail width and that is the narrowest hub we can make with a 1-piece crossmember (no additions for fender clearance). Add 26" to outside frame rail width for 3 piece crossmembers.
Q: What is a 3-piece crossmember?
A: That is when the upper a-arm pivots are separate from the bottom part of the crossmember and those pivots (housings) are welded to the top of your frame rail (used for all 35-48 Fords and any car that has a wide frame to narrow hub ratios) obviously this cannot be used on cars where fenders are bolted to the frame. Modifications to inner fender panel are required.
These numbers apply to both phase II (cast arms) and phase I (fabricated tube arms), although we can make custom phase arms 1" narrower, 2" overall at an additional cost.
Q: What size wheels and back spacing can I use?
A: Diameters of *14" & 15", 5" wide with 3" back space. 6" wide 4" back space. Larger diameter wheels can go 7" wide with 5" back spacing. Our large 13" rotor option requires at least 17" wheels. 5 on 4-3/4 late model Chevy and 5 on 4-1/2 late model Ford bolt pattern available.
*There can be clearance problems with some early 14" billet wheels and wire wheels.
Q: Will your front end lower my car?
Q: How much?
A: That depends. Rule of thumb: spindle centerline at ride height on standard phase I or phase II non-hi boy is 1" above the bottom of your frame rail so it depends on your tire diameter.
Example 24" tire diameter
Q: Can I adjust my ride height?
A: Because we use an adjustable coil over shock & spring, ride height can be adjusted about 1" plus or minus. But anymore than that, function of IFS would be compromised. Either spacing the crossmember away from the frame to raise ride height or notching crossmember into frame to lower ride heightcould be done. We do have a special billet aluminum dropped spindle for extreme applications.
Q: Are your IFS only rear steer?
A: All our suspensions are designed for rear steer. However, because of our unique spindle design we can adapt our suspension for a front steer if it is absolutely necessary.
Q: What is the narrowest hub width you can make?
A: 55" is the narrowest we can make without modifying the rack & pinion steering and making a custom sway bar. If we do those things – the narrowest IFS we have done was 48" hub to hub.
Q: Does that cost more?
A: Yes. Narrow rack and pinion is about $100.00 more, plus custom sway bar about $100.00, custom one piece crossmember (no extra cost) and custom 3-piece crossmember an additional $200.00.
Q: Will my car ride better with an IFS?
A: Absolutely. It's obvious. If you isolate suspension movement from one side of the frame to another without twisting or bending the frame or body – the car will stay flat and the suspension would do all the work. If straight axle suspension worked better than an IFS, then Mercedes Benz would put them in their cars, but they don't (neither do any other manufacturers for that matter).
Q: What makes your IFS better than others?
A: The quality of our components. Start with the side plates – stamped out of 7 gage steel jig welded to 2x3 or 3x3 .120 wall center tubing, lower a-arm pivots machined out of 2" solid billet steel turned down to 1/2" thick sidewall, upper pivot is 2" with 3/8" thick side wall – all completely jig welded by the same 2 people for the past 10 years.
A-arms, phase II front ends come with our exclusive investment, stainless steel castings, cast from 17-4 ph stainless steel. Over built with strength and integrity, these arms separate Kugel from anyone else – and what we are known for best. If the cast arms aren't your cup of tea, we also offer fabricated mild steel or stainless steel tube control arms, we call phase I.
All Phase I and Phase II arms are a 1-piece design, using no threaded ends for adjustment. What we use are billet aluminum accentric adjusters. These pieces slide into the upper a-arm pivot and have set screws in them that tighten down on the bolt. Once those are tight they are not to be touched again. To adjust camber simply loosen the nylock nut and rotate the bolt, once proper camber is found hold bolt and tighten down nut. Slippage will not occur. The key to this is the nut and bolt being very tight. There are serrated sleeves inside the polyethylene bushings, these sleeves are wider than the bushings. Stainless steel washers on each side of the bushing squeeze together at the same time squeezing the accentrics into the crossmember and locking everything together. The a-arm then pivots on the sleeves. Caster is built into the crossmember but can be changed with shim washers.
Our spindle assemblies are also cast stainless steel standard. This is not an option. This is not a stock steel dropped version of a Mustang II spindle. These are all separate castings – upright – steering arm and caliper bracket. Spindle stub is machined from solid 4130 chro-moly. This design also allows customizing for special projects. Aluminum polished rotor covers are standard on all show model IFS.
All standard width IFS comes with our 3/4" chrom-moly sway bar as standard equipment – not an option. Billet shocks and Eibach springs are standard Wilwood billet or forged aluminum calipers with 11" vented rotors are also standard.
Right down to the nuts and bolts, on all our show model IFS systems most of the hardware used is polished stainless steel. 5/8" control arm bolts, 1/2" shock bolts & nuts custom made hex stainless steel shock to sway bar adapters, 3/8" caliper bolts and washers. Have you ever bought a 5/8" x 11" long stainless steel bolt and have it polished? It's not cheap! Also, Kugel Komponents pre assembles all the parts. All ball joints pressed in the a-arms and greased. Bushing and sleeves are also pressed in and hardware installed – all spindle assemblies are completely built with rotors and bearings, greased and sealed, calipers shimmed and installed. Springs also installed on shocks, sway bars assembled and tie rods on the rack & pinion.
From assembly to shipping only 2 pair of hands touch your front end and they have been doing this for a total of 16 years. Great attention and detail goes into every suspension we make, the value our customers expect is never compromised and just wait till you see the packaging. Also, don't forget about the service on the other side of the phone. Just ask anyone who has our stuff or one of our dealers – they are our best salesmen.
Q: Why is your IFS more money than others?
A: It's not. Compare what you get with our system and what you don't get with others and you will see - we're actually low-priced.
Q: Why should I buy your front end?
A: Quite simply put, our front suspension systems are the result of years of experience in building and unmatchable craftsmanship along with 20+ years of use in street rods, trucks, big cars, small cars and kit cars. You will not find one out there that is better in quality or price.
INDEPENDENT REAR SUSPENSION
Q: Will your IRS fit my car?
A: If your car or truck uses conventional frame rails we have an IRS that will work. A custom crossmember may have to be built, but I would say that half the IRS systems we sell are custom applications.
Q: How about pro street application?
A: No problem, we have built several pro street rear ends extra narrow 52" hub to hub for super wide tires.
Q: How about straight off rear units?
A: It's all a function of power to weight to traction. You could have a 1,000 HP on an average street rod and the tires would break loose before anything else would break conversely. A heavier car with great traction and 400 HP will be much harder on the same rear end. Our ends use the proven 9" Ford gears. Heavy duty Corvette u-joints and castors weld steel half shafts. We just don't have any breakage problems. For extra heavy duty high HP we have custom 4-bar auto hub uprights.
Q: What widths do you have for your rear ends?
A: We build width from 52" to 6" in 1" increments.
Q: Do you build quick change IRS units?
A: Yes, we use a Winters clamp car center section.
Q: What about brakes?
A: We have our own 11" vented rotors custom made by Wilwood and Corvette finned aluminum calipers. Our quick change rears are billet Wilwood calipers.
Q: Will your IRS work on my late model heavier car?
A: Absolutely. We recommend using 4 coil over shock units, 2 per side. It is absolutely a must for a heavier car 2800# and up.
Q: Why should I buy your IRS?
A: As with our front suspension systems, our rear ends are unmatched in quality, looks and performance. Also, as with our front ends, we were the first in the street rod industry to build IRS kits some 10 year ago. Our systems have seen thousands and thousands of road miles and also have complimented more show car winners that we can keep track of. Plain and simple - we've got the best stuff out there.
SHIFT ARM KIT
Q: What transmission will your kit fit?
A:Any GM 3 & 4 speed automatics.
Q: What does it do?
A: This kit contains all the parts and hardware to hook up any column shifter to any GM transmission, 3 or 4 speed, regardless if the shifter was for a 3 or 4 speed.
The key is out billet aluminum splined button. This button slides on the selector shaft of your transmission replacing any bracket that may have been there originally. Once the button is fastened on your transmission (with standard or metric nut supplied) than the rest is easy. Our shift arm also is splined to match the button until you find the right angel and tighten the clamping bolt. Next, you simply hook up the linkage rod from the lever of the column to the shift arm. Bending of the rod is sometimes necessary, but the ball pivot joints have about 20° of movement each, so proper alignment is expected. Slide the pivot joint on shift arm slot for short or long throw and proper shift indicator alignment.
Q: Do you have a kit for Ford or non GM transmissions?
Q: What is stainless steel?
A: The shift arm, rod and washers.
Q: What length kit do I need?
A: We have two lengths, long and short. The long rod is 22" long and has 4" of 5/16" fine thread on each end. Bolt to bolt extreme measure are 17-1/2" to 23-1/2". Short rod is 15" also 4" of thread on each side, extreme measures are 10-1/2" to 17". Most cars from Model A’s to 1948 use the short rods – everything else takes the long rod.
If you measure the distance from your column shift (in the park position) to your selector shaft of your transmission, subtract three inches, that is usually the length of rod you need (unless bending is required).
Q: Can I cut the rod thread myself?
A: Yes, but these rods are thread rolled so the unthreaded part of the rod is 19/32. The new threads will look a little flat, but for this application we feel it is safe.
Q: Would it work if I have a floor shift?
A: Yes. Then you can buy just the shift arm only, no linkage kit.
All Kugel line clamps are stamped from 12 ga 304 stainless steel. That is over .100 thick.
All clamps come with 2 kinds of screws. 10/32" x 3/8" button head allen & #10 x 1/2" phillips pan head sheet metal screws - all stainless steel.
All clamps are sold per package, one size per package. No mixing of sizes.
These clamps are designed to fasten your lines against an object i.e., frame rail, fender panel, firewall, etc. The size of the clamp is the I.D. of the clamps, which equals the O.D. of your line, hose, cable, etc.
3/16" clamp I.D. = 3/16" - 3/16" stainless steel hard brake line tubing.
Some other popular hose sizes and what clamps size to use:
- -3 stainless steel braided hose - 1/4" clamp
- -4 stainless steel braided hose - 5/16" clamp
- -6 stainless steel braided hose - 1/2" clamp
- -8 stainless steel braided hose - 5/8" clamp
- -10 stainless steel braided hose - 3/4" clamp
- -12 stainless steel braided hose - 7/8" clamp
- 5/8" heater hose - 7/8" clamp
- most battery cables - 1/2" clamp
- 3/8" rubber fuel line - 5/8" clamp
Whatever the O.D. of your line, that is the clamp size you need.
Also, a new style of clamp for Kugel Komponents is our separator clamps clamps. These are only available in the 3/16 double and 3/8" double sizes. There are 4 different styles in each size. There is a top and bottom for each style, they are sold in pack of 4 (4 tops & 4 bottoms with screws & nuts also all stainless steel) each style. No mixing styles.
Single Line Clamps
Double Line Clamps