Every off-roading enthusiast knows a vehicle's suspension system is crucial in providing a comfortable and safe ride, particularly when driving on rough terrain. The suspension system absorbs shocks and vibrations, reduces body roll, and keeps the wheels in contact with the ground while improving traction and stability.
In this article, we'll take a closer look at the 2000-2005 Ford Excursion coil spring conversion process along with a detailed description and the benefits of doing so, as well as examples from one of our own projects involving a 2000 Ford Excursion Limited.
Why upgrade your Excursion to Coil Spring suspension?
The Ford Excursion is a heavy-duty SUV built to tow and haul heavy loads. However, its suspension system is designed for on-road use and requires more to be suitable for true off-road driving. Upgrading to a later model F250 coil spring suspension can significantly improve its capability and provide several benefits for daily driving, towing, and especially off-road performance. So, when it comes to the 2000-2005 model Excursion, you may want to consider upgrading your suspension to a more robust, battle-tested setup such as the popular later model F250 coil spring conversion, which uses critical components such as radius arm suspension to provide better ride quality, improved steering, and superior ground clearance capability. All that said, here are some of the benefits you get from this upgrade:
- Improved ride quality: With its advanced coil-spring system, the suspension setup of the F250 offers better control over bumps and vibrations, resulting in superior ride quality and comfort compared to the original suspension of the Excursion.
- Increased ground clearance: The F250 coil spring suspension provides increased ground clearance compared to the original Excursion suspension, allowing the vehicle to clear obstacles with greater ease and reducing the risk of getting hung up on rocks, roots, or other barriers.
- Better off-road performance: By utilizing more robust and durable components, the improved stability, traction, and handling of the coil spring system used in the F250 suspension setup provide better off-road performance through increased suspension articulation than the original leaf suspension of the Excursion.
- More customization options: Upgrading to the F250 coil spring setup provides more customization opportunities for Excursion owners. Also, many aftermarket upgrades are available for the F250 suspension that can improve performance and give greater adjustability.
- Improved towing capacity: Designed for heavy-duty use, the suspension setup of the F250 is an excellent upgrade for Excursion owners who need to tow heavy loads or trailers, as it can easily result in improved towing capability.
- Better Turning Radius: The later model F250 has an increased turning radius ability resulting in more agile off road performance and increased ability to fit in stubbornly tight parking spaces.
How to install Coil Springs on your Excursion
Converting a 2000-2005 Ford Excursion to a coil-spring suspension involves:
- Removing the original suspension.
- Preparing the frame.
- Installing the new coil-spring suspension components of the drivetrain and steering system.
- Aligning and testing the vehicle.
This process significantly improves the Excursion's off-road capabilities and overall on-road and off-road performance. However, it is complex, and we always recommend having the procedure done by a qualified off-road shop.
Here is a basic outline of the Coil conversion:
- Remove the old suspension system - The first step in upgrading your suspension is to remove the old system by removing the front axle assembly, leaf springs, track bar bracket, and shocks.
- Next, install a later model F250 coil spring and radius arm suspension system. This system is an improvement over the Excursion's original suspension system because it provides better ride quality and increases the ability of the suspension to articulate and increase traction when going over obstacles or rough terrain, making it more suitable for off-road driving.
- Upgrade steering components - Upgrading the steering components is also necessary when upgrading the suspension by installing later model f250 steering linkage or upgraded aftermarket linkage such as PMF Suspension or Synergy Suspension and or single/dual stabilizers based on desired usage and tire size. These upgrades improve steering response and reduce the risk of damage to the steering system during off-road driving.
- Replace the drivetrain components - When upgrading the suspension system, it's also a good idea to upgrade drivetrain components such as axles, differentials, and driveshaft to ensure the entire system is solid and reliable for driving off-road.
- Install aftermarket parts - Aftermarket parts can also be added to the suspension and steering system to improve performance. These can include longer shocks, adjustable sway bars, and upgraded control arms. Such upgrades can provide even better stability, suspension travel, and ground clearance.
Our very own Excursion Coil Spring Conversion
At Adrenaline Offroad Co., we recently had the opportunity to perform a complete coil spring conversion on a customer's 2000 Ford Excursion. This was an exciting project for us, as we love nothing more than taking on a challenge and seeing the transformation of a vehicle for optimal performance, especially the beloved Ford Excursion.
To begin the project, we started by searching for a donor chassis that would provide us with all the necessary components for the conversion. This makes the process much easier, as it can be time-consuming to source individual parts and, most importantly, save some downtime for our customer. Of course, after some searching, we found a 2007 F250 4wd bare rolling chassis that was a perfect fit for the job.
Once we had the new chassis, we disassembled the donor frame and sent the usable pieces out for blasting. Once everything was cleaned up, we refinished the axle housings and began rebuilding both front and rear differentials with Detroit Truetrac carriers, a new Motivegear master bearing kit, and a 3:73 ring and pinion for each to start fresh from any previous wear.
Next, we shifted focus to the front components and added Ford Motorcraft OEM ball joints to the suspension for optimal performance and a Timken wheel bearing/hub assembly with a set of Warn premium sleek black super-duty locking hubs to provide the extra grip. Of course, this also included replacing all seals and bearings as a precautionary measure, as always.
When it came to stopping power, we added a Power Stop Z-36 Truck and Tow performance brake kit to ensure that the Excursion would stop on a dime. This included drilled and slotted rotors, performance brake pads, and new red powder-coated caliper assemblies with a nice Russell stainless steel brake hose kit as a bonus.
For the actual coils and suspension, we chose to go with Icon dual rate 4.5" lift coils with new F250 05-07 Ford OEM spring retainers/buckets (because the PMF version looked too boxy) and a set of ATS leaf springs with Sulastic shackles in the back to increase rear suspension ride quality.
However, when it came to steering components, we utilized several PMF products (per customer request), including a 2004-16 F250/350 adjustable track bar, 4.5" drop bracket, 05-22 Superduty adjustable link arms, and 05-16 F250/250 heavy-duty (stock height) replacement radius arm mounts.
To assist with steering, we added a PMF 05-22 Superduty HD tie rod bar, PMF 05-22 Superduty single-piece drag link, and PSC Motorsports steering box (due to the variant in the sector shaft spline count and size required by the new suspension geometry and prevent bump steer). Lastly, we installed a PMF dual steering stabilizer bracket paired with Bilstein 5100 series stabilizers to dampen the road impact and smooth the steering.
Finally, when it came to altering the frame, we welded in a custom threaded bung we fabricated to accept the (new) later model PMF track bar bracket. This was necessary due to the curvature of the 99-04 frame configuration and the original track bar bracket mounting being different from the new track bar bracket requirements.
Overall, this project was exciting for both our team and our customer. The transformation of this Ford Excursion was impressive, and our customer was amazed at the increased ride quality and turning radius. At Adrenaline Offroad Co., we constantly strive to push boundaries and attain new levels of performance for our clients, and like on all projects, this project was no different.