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2005 Ford F-250 Super Duty: Diesel Perfection

A Cummins-Powered, Allison-Shifted Ford F-250

Text By Jason Thompson, Photography by Jason Thompson

Garth Shortridge built this '05 Ford F-250 the way he wanted it-and did the majority of the work right in his own driveway. This undertaking was very inspirational to us here at Diesel Power, because although Garth had never tried any automotive project this extensive before, he took on the Cummins swap with no fear. Garth is a manager at a distribution center called GTM in El Cajon, California, and takes care of its diesel fleet, but he is not a professional mechanic.

Garth wasn't happy with his original 6.0L Power Stroke, so he sold the engine for $5,000 (with 15,000 miles) and bought an '06 5.9L Cummins (with 10,000 miles) for $6,000 to replace it. The technical support and parts (motor mounts, electronics, flexplate, and adapter plates) needed to complete the swap came from Destroked. Originally, Garth's Cummins-swap plan called for retaining the truck's original 5R110 five-speed automatic transmission. But Garth decided that if he was going to put the most proven name in diesel engines in his truck-he should do the same with the transmission. So with help from Destroked, he sourced a Cummins-to-Allison adapter and flexplate so he could bolt in an Allison 1000.

Built To Play In The Sand
Garth takes this truck off-roading in the sand dunes of Glamis near El Centro, California, so many things have been done to make the Super Duty perform better. For example, the batteries were moved out of the engine bay and attached to the frame to distribute the weight better. Another thing taken from the trials of Baja racing is heavy-duty nylon sheathing, which protects the hoses and electrical wires.

When we took a ride in this truck, we were convinced Garth did the right thing. The gauges, air conditioning, and everything else functions just like it did before. The only thing that didn't work was the cruise control, but he told us he never uses that anyway. The combination Garth put together utilizes the best parts from each manufacturer. He now has the durability and power of the Cummins engine, the strength and quality found in Ford's body and chassis, and the intelligence and strength of the Allison transmission-all in one perfect truck.

By Jason Thompson
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