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Ford Bronco Parts - Classic Vintage Early Bronco Parts

F-250 Front Shock Towers

Tech article by admin and filed under Suspension

Tech article by Jon Hanna (Admin)

The F-250 shock tower is one of those great modifications that’s both cheap and simple. By replacing your stock shock towers with these taller, heavier units, you’ll be able to use longer travel shocks for more articulation. Pricing is around $25-35 for the pair. That’s less than one new shock!

F-250 Shock Towers F-250 Shock Towers
Here are the new towers. Ford part # E5TZ 18183 A for a pre-1994 F-250. They’re available directly through Ford or several of the Bronco parts houses including BC Broncos and Wild Horses. The photo on the right gives you an idea of the extra shock length the new towers will allow. Another benefit is that the new towers use the more common “eye” shock mounting style. This gives you more options for shocks including the popular Rancho 9000(X) series.
F-250 Shock Towers
This is how NOT to remove your old towers. The factory towers are welded to the frame top and bottom. You’ll need to grind the welds down to remove the old towers, but the top welds are not easy to get to. In my impatience I tried prying the tower back and forth until the top weld finally broke. Unfortunately it took a chunk of the frame with it. Oops!
F-250 Shock Towers F-250 Shock Towers
After screwing up the first side I determined an easier way would be to cut the top portion of the old tower off first with a sawzall. This allows for much easier access to the factory weld between the top of the frame and the factory tower. An air grinder makes quick work of the weld.
F-250 Shock Towers F-250 Shock Towers
When I trial fit the new towers it became obvious that they tilt away from the inner fender quite a bit. Although it’s possible to bolt up the shocks, I felt the angle put more stress than needed on the shock mounting points and decided to take some of the “tilt” out of the towers. This puts the shock at a more vertical position and reduces bind. It also helps keep the top of the shock well away from bulging tires.Two simple cuts at the bend of the new towers followed by a few minutes of agression therapy with a bench vice and BFhammer straightened them out to a better angle. I trial fit a few times and when happy with the results I just weld up the gaps.
F-250 Shock Towers F-250 Shock Towers F-250 Shock Towers
The final towers in place. You’ll notice I was able to match up one of the pre-drilled tower holes with a factory frame hole. This worked out well for the shocks I wanted to use, but notice that the new towers aren’t as high up as they could be. If you really want to cram the longest travel shocks possible in there you’ll want to mount the towers as close to the upper fender well as you can. If you have a body lift it will also affect how high the towers can be mounted. Be sure to measure and trial fit for your particular shock and lift before final welding.One final note about welding your towers to the frame; you definitely need to. I used just the bolt and temporary tack welds thinking that I wanted to trail test for proper travel and be sure there wasn’t any binding. Although the trail was fairly mild, the single bolt and tack welds didn’t hold up long at all. The bolt actually started to distort the frame because of the leverage of the shock going through full travel. Test your set up on a ramp or local hill, but don’t go out on the trail without fully welding those new towers to the frame.

Tech article by Jon Hanna (Admin)

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