From Crew Cab to Regular Cab

Published in the June 2009 Issue June 2009

There is no denying it: Super Duty Harley Davidson Editions are bad to the bone, any way you look at it. Factory 20-inch wheels, full black leather interior, cool Harley badging and even some pretty stylish graphics. Seems Ford only did one thing wrong when they built the Harley Super Duty. They never built them like this, a fully chopped down street version that will turn every head on the street. 

Now we have seen these custom regular cab short bed trucks before. You can find old worn out XL model work trucks for next to nothing, chop the frame down, bolt on a short bed and install some nicer seats. Easy enough, right? For Jonathon Stephenson of Texas, there was a more intriguing route to take. How about cutting up a perfectly good brand new 2007 F250 crew cab short bed? A truck already equipped with the total Harley package. Bet you haven't seen that done before. 

You read that right. This truck started out as a full 3/4-ton F250 Harley crew cab short bed powered by a 6.0L Power Stroke diesel. Just weeks after purchase it was pulled into the shop where the plasma torch was fired up and the frame rails found themselves having a little custom work done to them. 

The original four-door cab was removed from the truck and measurements were made so a factory regular cab could be bolted on in its place. Looking at the truck on the street, you'd never guess it didn't come from the factory this way. Best of all, the VIN number still shows it as being a Harley Edition truck. Wanting to keep with the already great-looking Harley theme, the truck still sits on the factory 20-inch Harley wheels wrapped with more aggressive BFG street tires. The entire truck was lowered using a kit from DJM suspensions, 2 inches up front and a full 3 inches out back. Other than that, the truck remains relatively stock appearing-well, except for the two doors that are missing, of course. 

However, under the hood that factory 6.0L Power Stroke needed some attention. Before having issues that most 6.0Ls experience, Stephenson wanted to fix the truck up right-solve a problem before it happens. He took the truck to Brian's Truck Shop (BTS) of Lead Hill, AR, a shop that specializes mostly in Ford transmissions. Along with building some of the best transmissions in the business, the company also does a lot of other custom diesel work, including dyno tuning.  

The guys at BTS started out by pulling the heads of the engine so a set of Hypermax O-ring head gaskets and head studs could be installed. That should eliminate any problems with leaking and blown head gaskets down the road, no matter what the power level this truck will get to. Next on the list of things to do was the transmission. With hopes of 500 plus horsepower, that factory 5r110 transmission might hold for awhile, but it wouldn't like it much. So again, Cale and Brian of BTS spent some time going through the trans beefing up all the parts they could to ensure countless miles of problem-free hot-rodding.

Next on the list was the horsepower department. With all the preventative maintenance done, it was time to start building some power in that Power Stroke. Just like any diesel, improving airflow is the first small step. A complete cold air intake from S&B filters was installed along with a turbo back Silverline exhaust system. The exhaust also helped give this truck the sweet muscle truck tone this unique truck needed. 

Now on to adjusting the factory tuning tables. Stephenson opted for SCT Xcallibrator software offered by BTS with its fully custom tunes. After countless hours on the dynamometer and driving the truck around town, BTS was able to perfect the tunes per Stephenson's request. Great street manners, awesome transmission tuning and a very impressive powerband. The truck made more than 470 hp with just the intake, exhaust and new BTS tunes installed. In a truck this small, you know that's more than enough power to throw your head into the seat. 

The interior of the truck was left pretty much stock with the already nice black leather seating surfaces and custom Harley Davidson pieces throughout. However, Stephenson did dress up the stereo system a little with a 7-inch Pioneer touch screen head unit, Fosgate amplifier, a 10-inch subwoofer behind the seats and Alpine R Series components throughout. We'd agree though: a truck like this definitely has to have a pounding sound system. 

Stephenson admits some might think he's crazy for cutting up a perfectly new truck. Nevertheless, we think he made the right decision. Cool little street trucks like this are hard to come by, and this one is definitely one-of-a-kind.


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