This article originally appeared in the Winter 2016 issue.
“I have been a truck girl my whole life but it wasn't until my high school sweetheart (now husband) and I started a diesel repair shop that I became a diesel truck girl,” says Courtnay Foster of Roy, Wash.
This couple joined forces to own and run Northwest Custom Diesel Inc. in nearby Tacoma, where they repair and modify diesels for their customers. This is also where the driving passion for the industry was set in stone for this mother of three as she worked on her first diesel build, a 2008 F350 6.4L Power Stroke.
“When we are not running our shop, we enjoy coming up with new ideas customizing our own trucks. We personally prefer Power Strokes,” Courtnay explains.
Courtnay started giving this completely stock truck her own personality stamp by starting a running list of modifications. After some research, she took a shot at the list she made to increase the dependability of her at-the-time daily driver while still benefiting from impressive power gains.
First off, Courtnay wanted the right turbo that would deliver the airflow for the upgrades she had in mind. Her installation of a single S366 turbo was eventually picked for its fluid power delivery for her daily driver. And because it performs best paired with at least a 50 percent over stock injector upgrade for improved throttle response, Courtnay followed this up by installing 60 percent over stock injectors. This choice of injectors would ideally give her the added benefits of increased horsepower without the risk of getting too much smoky haze while idling during her daily driving. She also installed a dual 5-inch downpipe back exhaust and custom bumpers that, among other final mods, tied in Courtnay’s personal preferences quite nicely. Rolling on 40-inch tires and with the 10-inch lift complete, this diesel made for a striking presence.
Bigger & Better
But this wasn’t the final step for Courtnay, but rather a catalyst for something bigger. It only served to embolden the dream design for a truck that was for her still conceptual but was about to become a reality.
“I knew I wanted a black truck with a black interior because I could already picture the build in my head,” she explained.
So Courtnay and her husband decided to put her old truck up for sale, and as she puts it, “The search for my 6.7L Power Stroke began.”
Courtnay didn’t initially have a new truck in mind when she started hunting around for her new daily driver. But everything she found wasn’t the right fit for what she was looking for…until the day she struck gold.
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“One day, my husband and I were driving past a Ford dealership and we saw a black 2015 6.7L Lariat sitting front row, practically calling my name,” Courtnay says. “With only 11 miles on it and being exactly what I was looking for, I knew it was perfect for my next build, so I drove it home that day!”
Needless to say, this 2015 F350 crew cab long bed Power Stroke was a vision in black. Courtnay wasted no time in getting this truck ready to be her daily driver and one of their shop trucks. As well as offering her a chance to work on her dream build, this truck was the perfect opportunity to work on customizing a diesel side-by-side with her husband’s own truck as well as a great way for the Fosters to bond.
“We each have completely opposite style when it comes to looks and size but it’s something we enjoy doing as a hobby together,” she explains. “It really brings us together as a couple.”
So what did Courtnay do to get started on the customization of the Lariat? Her truck is fairly new so she’s just getting started, but she didn’t waste any time making this build her own. By choosing 24-by-12 American Force Evade wheels, Courtnay was able to customize the three unfinished aluminum plates with a black and purple powder-coat. She wrapped these wheels in 40-inch Toyo Open Country M/T tires, an off-road maximum traction tire that perfectly feeds the versatility of her latest and greatest daily driver, thanks to their increased load-carrying capacity, extra ground clearance, and fortitude in off-road driving. Installing some Rigid dually LED lights enables Courtnay to have powerful illumination for any situation, especially when paired with the 20-inch Rigid light bar in the center of her bumper. And with a Rigid UV purple light in each fender well, you can really see her style come out in this truck’s bold customization. Courtnay tied off the personality of her truck with the installation of a 5-inch MRBP exhaust, chosen to give her truck some growl. She sealed the deal of turning this truck into a monster with a 10-inch Kelderman lift that’s powder-coated purple to match, giving it an aggressive stance that will not be quickly forgotten.
Through all her build work and new ideas for improving her diesel, Courtnay says, “I have to say my husband is my rock. He has taught me so much and continues to teach me every day.”
She’s cast her eye towards a few future mods, including custom tuning from KEM Performance and possibly a non-VGT turbo.
But here’s the big question—is she satisfied with her dream build so far?
See for yourself. She’s quick and definite in replying, “I LOVE my truck and wouldn't want it any other way.”
After all of Courtnay’s experiences working up a sweat in the shop, chasing her dream build, and keeping the diesel repair business going with her husband, what would she share with all the other women out there in the diesel industry?
Courtnay says, “I think it’s important that we inspire each other, empower each other and learn from each other, because that's what it’s all about.”
Photography by Venecca Pennington Photo Artistry
American Force Wheels
Northwest Custom Diesel Inc.
Rigid Industries LED Lighting