Not exactly in the desert, but plenty of sand and whoops to play in


New Member
Hi all,

I'm new to the forum and desert racing/prerunners. I'm up in the U.P. of Michigan and I'm looking for info on building a vehicle that I can get some speed in on our ORV trails here in Michigan. The terrain they provide seems to me to be very similar to what is out west and especially in Baja. We've got really sandy soil with a lot of whoops, jumps and other obstacles with the added "benefit" of trees on either side of the trails, something I don't think you see much of in the desert.

I've got a '89 F150 that I will be building on a tight budget since I'm in graduate school on a fixed income. It will kind of be a multipurpose rig that will also see it's fair share of slow trail wheeling and mud, so it won't be totally setup for high speed running. As it sits now:

That mysterious brown stuff is called rust, I know you don't have it in the southwest :)

The plan so far includes:
EFI 460 from F350 I got stupid cheap. May convert to carb, but haven't decided yet. Either way, I'll open the heads up and add a cam of some sort.
Spare set of TTB beams that I plan to cut, turn, and brace myself. I also have a D50 stub shaft that I hope will work to beef up the front end some.
4" Deaver springs all the way around (as long as they'll work under the heavier 460)
Haven't decided on shocks (suggestions are welcome)
8-lug conversion on the front (already done)
10.25 Sterling (Already installed and Lincoln locked)
36" grooved hummer tires on it in the picture as well as a set of 33" All terrains.

Down the road:
May make my own bulged fiberglass fenders/bedsides
Some sort of tube bed setup for holding spare tire with just bedsides on it.

Any suggestions, comments, or criticisms are more than welcome. I'm here to learn.

Thanks guys!