TCI Engineering's Custom IFS - Vintage Mustang Forums

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post #1 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-21-2012, 05:46 PM Thread Starter
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TCI Engineering's Custom IFS

This thread was started to help explain the differences between a MII front end and the Custom IFS we sell for the 64.5-70 Mustang. Also, to discuss some of the more intricate details of the parts and geometry.

......I am updating this thread as I receive more images and drawings from my R&D department.


Total Cost Involved has offered two different style front ends for a number of applications for nearly 40 years. These vehicles range from Early Ford Street Rods to 50's pickups and of course Muscle Cars. Each one of these demographics has their niche that we try to fill.


Muscle Cars like the Nova and the Falcon have a huge following and due to their price point are prime candidates for a budget suspension upgrade. For these cars we offer the Coil Spring front end based on the MII spindle. Which is typically easier on the pocket book and performs extremely well with our custom geometry improvements. Here is a short video of testing performed on Nick Licata's '64 Falcon by Modified Mustangs & Fast Fords. This car ran 48.50 mph through the slalom on 320 treadwear tires using our MII front end & Triangulated 4-Link. This is just to show that even the MII with some well engineered geometry changes can perform well. Nothing fancy was added to our base suspension to achieve this either. These were all standard components that come in our baseline kits including regular coil springs up front and non adjustable coil-overs out back.



Onto the Custom IFS:

The Camaros & Mustangs are vehicles that have a higher entry price point with owners typically wanting top tier performance. For these cars we build/sell our Custom IFS front ends to match performance and in some cases exceed the best performance vehicles being produced today. These front ends utilize our Custom spindle and geometry specifically matched to a number of things including but not limited to, vehicle weight, max tire width, center of gravity, ground clearance, track width, amount of travel, and ride height. The spindle pin is based on the common '75-'80 Granada so bearings, rotors and seals are easy to find. However, the rest of the spindle is proprietary to TCI Engineering. It has more kingpin inclination, better ball joint angles (allows extra wheel travel without binding) and overall height is increased when compared to a more commonly used MII spindle. We also built a simple 4 bolt attachment plate to keep weight down and build strength for the caliper bracket mounting points. It also allows us to use removable steering arms which doesn't limit us like the MII spindle would. This means we can build kits for 60" wide pickups with all kinds of hood clearance or narrow cars like the Mustang where the rack must sit much lower in the chassis to clear the engine. That means we can make custom steering arms that bolt right onto this spindle to accomodate whatever packaging constraints we may have on a given application. We have made it a point to keep our crossmember tucked up as tight to the frame rails as possible with the 64.5-70 Mustang. Ground clearance with our kit is nearly the same as factory yet we drop the vehicle 2.5"-3" (with the dropped spindles). The bottom of our cross member hangs less than an inch lower than the bottom of the factory engine mount cross member. Some MII style cross members hang up to 2.5" lower than our Custom IFS leaving very little ground clearance. This gives our kit the best ground clearance in the aftermarket and yet we still have the biggest overall ride height drop (with dropped spindles).


Even though our kit for the Mustang is nearly identical to what we sell for the 1st Gen Camaro, the Mustang is a different animal than the Camaro in that the front clip doesn't unbolt from the car. That means we will be reusing the factory frame rails. We use extra wide reinforcement plates for the frame to keep the frame strong and to distribute the load across a larger surface. I have heard some installation shops mention that our kit is tougher to install because of these plates but we feel it is necessary for the additional strength they provide. We also wanted to get rid of the shock towers for extra space in the compartment and a cleaner look. This will allow the installation of even the largest of engines including the Coyote, FE's & 429-460 Big Blocks with room to spare. http://forums.vintage-mustang.com/to...-w-fe-t56.html

*NOTE* Some customers have chosen to keep the shock towers but that was primarily for legality issues in places like New Zealand and Australia. http://forums.vintage-mustang.com/to...tang-vert.html



*insert image comparing the height of a competitors MII crossmember vs. ours*






The TCI Engineering Custom IFS has greater roll stiffness than a typical MII kit due to a better motion ratio of the shock/spring. The coil-over attaches to the lower control arm closer to the ball joint on our Custom IFS vs. a MII or even a factory '64.5-'70 Mustang set-up. This means that the car will not have as much tendency to lean in the turns as a MII or a factory set-up would. Typical spring rates for our kits are 350-400# depending on small or big block engine. Compare that to a MII coil-over or a factory set-up which use 600+. The higher the spring rate needed to hold the car up, the less effective the springs are at keeping the car from leaning in a turn. Our kit will also not need as much anti-sway bar to keep the car level in a turn which saves weight.

1" bump = .8 Degree Negative
2" bump = 1.8 Degrees Negative
*insert image for camber gain*

The upper control arms are built with 1" x .156 Wall U.S. DOM steel.
The lower control arms are built with 1 1/8" x .156 Wall U.S. DOM steel.

Upper Control arm length = 7.8775"
Lower Control arm length = 13.2513"
*Insert image*

It has been brought up a few times as to what the height of our spindle is. You must include the pivot of the ball joints to know the true height.

(10.5" center of pivot to center of pivot)
*insert spindle height image vs. ball joints installed*

9.5" center to center of upper & lower control arm pivots
*insert c/a pivot height drawing*

We only use Moog ball joints. The upper is a Moog Part# K772 which has 28,000 Pull lout Strength - The lower is a Moog Part# K719 which has 32,000 Pull out Strength.
*Insert ball joint images*

*insert ball joint images*

*insert bump steer image specs*
1" Bump = .000
2" Bump = .062" Toe Out

*insert kingpin inclination drawing*

*insert anti-dive angle picture*

*anti-sway bar spring rate*

Here is a prime example of the versatility of the Custom spindle we use. We are able to make rear steer kits with this same spindle using special rear mounted steering arms & rack. The rear steer kits are for the early Street Rods like this 1932 Ford with one of our Pro Street chassis equipped with our Street Rod Custom IFS & Drag Race 4-link.

-J

Last edited by TCI Engineering; 12-15-2016 at 04:57 PM.
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post #2 of 34 (permalink) Old 09-05-2012, 12:19 AM
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Any idea when more info will be added here?
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post #3 of 34 (permalink) Old 09-07-2012, 11:37 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by nelsoncat View Post
Any idea when more info will be added here?
Craig
I have been adding small tidbits every couple days. The images are my biggest hold up because I am not well versed in Adobe Photoshop so I have to wait for my marketing guy to make them for me. His schedule is insanely full right now so I appreciate your patience.

-J
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post #4 of 34 (permalink) Old 09-07-2012, 03:10 PM
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Don't feel bad, I still haven't figured out how to post pic's on anyones forums!
Craig

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post #5 of 34 (permalink) Old 09-09-2012, 11:36 PM
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I installed this in my 67 Mustang "DEMONIZER" - its NICE!

I just joined up & started posting my Project DEMONIZER build - there are a couple pics of the TCI custom front up now, I will add more.

I have not driven the car yet because I took it completely apart to do a full rotisserie build and its getting painted now - first thing I did was chop off the shock towers and install the TCI kit - definitely the way to go!

However, I researched front ends for about 8 months and the TCI Custom Front end seemed to be the best engineered and had a really great sale a few years ago when I bought it.

The key points I liked best over the other kits are:
- motor mounts
- the extra support on the crossmember.

The motor mounts have a nicely integrated mounting point on the cross member - not just a piece of square tube welded on like an engine stand - looks more factory - its one of the best parts of the kit, but also presents one of the most frustrating issues while trying to attache the power steering hoses. I made SST extensions.

The way the cross member welds in is also a better design as they provide additional plates that "box" in the front sub frame. I went even further and boxed in the entire front subframe to make it all flush with the TCI front end and a smooth transition into the Tin-Man Sub frame connectors.

Attached are some pics of the TCI Custom Front End in primer

I can post my install pics if anyone is interested - I spent some time & smoothed everything out & moulded it all into the frame so it looks like a factory full frame car.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg IMG_4403_sm.jpg (38.0 KB, 137 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_4417_sm.jpg (39.5 KB, 128 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_4727_sm.jpg (46.3 KB, 136 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_4774_sm.jpg (85.4 KB, 123 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_4783_sm.jpg (45.2 KB, 131 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_4788_sm.jpg (41.3 KB, 116 views)

1967 Mustang Coupe, Ford Performance 5.0 Crate Engine with GT40 Alum Heads, Silverfox AOD, March Performance Serpentine system, 2.5" Dual Exhaust with Electric Cut Outs, TCI Custom Front End, Ford 9" Rear 3.89 TracLock, Wilwood Brakes all Around, Rocket Fuel 15 Chrome Wheels, BFG Radial TA 205, 255 60/15, A/C, Power Windows, Power Locks, Power Trunk, Kenwood DNX DVD with GPS, Corbeau Sport Seats.

Last edited by Demonizer67; 09-09-2012 at 11:44 PM.
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post #6 of 34 (permalink) Old 06-04-2013, 12:03 PM
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Thanks for posting this Jason. I always have people ask my about my set-up and now I have a place to link them to. You should post this info over on PT.com as I know there are people over there interested in this info that might not visit a "vintage" mustang board.

1965 ProTouring Falcon Hardtop
TCI Protouring IFS & Triagulated 4-link, 6-pot Wilwoods, blown modular 3v 4.6 and big rubber.
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post #7 of 34 (permalink) Old 06-10-2013, 01:01 PM Thread Starter
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Great idea, as soon as it is complete I will definitely copy & paste it over on P/T.com.

-J
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post #8 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-02-2013, 03:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Demonizer67 View Post
I just joined up & started posting my Project DEMONIZER build - there are a couple pics of the TCI custom front up now, I will add more.

I have not driven the car yet because I took it completely apart to do a full rotisserie build and its getting painted now - first thing I did was chop off the shock towers and install the TCI kit - definitely the way to go!

However, I researched front ends for about 8 months and the TCI Custom Front end seemed to be the best engineered and had a really great sale a few years ago when I bought it.

The key points I liked best over the other kits are:
- motor mounts
- the extra support on the crossmember.

The motor mounts have a nicely integrated mounting point on the cross member - not just a piece of square tube welded on like an engine stand - looks more factory - its one of the best parts of the kit, but also presents one of the most frustrating issues while trying to attache the power steering hoses. I made SST extensions.

The way the cross member welds in is also a better design as they provide additional plates that "box" in the front sub frame. I went even further and boxed in the entire front subframe to make it all flush with the TCI front end and a smooth transition into the Tin-Man Sub frame connectors.

Attached are some pics of the TCI Custom Front End in primer

I can post my install pics if anyone is interested - I spent some time & smoothed everything out & moulded it all into the frame so it looks like a factory full frame car.
Beautiful work, wondering how it drives if you finished it yet.

1969 Ford Mustang Coupe, 351W - Edelbrock Top-End Kit, TK0-600 5-Spd, Currie 9" inch rear 31 spine, 3.73 gears
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post #9 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-09-2013, 11:56 PM
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I'm wondering if there is a difference between the small block version and the modular besides the motor mounts? I ask because I'd like to leave to possibilty open to put a coyote in at a later time.
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post #10 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-10-2013, 10:31 AM
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Yes - TCI makes kits specific to the Modular & stuff - check the website for pics.

1967 Mustang Coupe, Ford Performance 5.0 Crate Engine with GT40 Alum Heads, Silverfox AOD, March Performance Serpentine system, 2.5" Dual Exhaust with Electric Cut Outs, TCI Custom Front End, Ford 9" Rear 3.89 TracLock, Wilwood Brakes all Around, Rocket Fuel 15 Chrome Wheels, BFG Radial TA 205, 255 60/15, A/C, Power Windows, Power Locks, Power Trunk, Kenwood DNX DVD with GPS, Corbeau Sport Seats.
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post #11 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-10-2013, 11:39 AM Thread Starter
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The Modular kit uses a different crossmember as well. You will need this crossmember in the meantime if you wanted to switch engines later.

-J
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post #12 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-10-2013, 12:42 PM
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TCI Update - AWESOME!

I have the car almost finished now, and the TCI front end is totally AWESOME!. HUGE improvement over stock - no matter what you do to a stock front end - it will never handle as good as this. If someone tells you its the same as a bunch of bolt on suspension parts & bolt on rack - do your self a favor & find someone with a TCI installed & drive it first - then you can decide. But I'm telling ya - its great!

I have the 1" sway bar installed with Wilwood brakes. I have the 350# coil over shocks for a 5.0 with alum heads.

The extra room after chopping of the shock towers is great!

I have about 800 miles on it now.

The power rack works great - no leaks and quiet. I used the Saginaw pump with a March serpentine setup.- I used the pressure reducing kit from Bills Hot Rod company, CA and added 4 shims to reduce psi to 970 +/-. I have no way of telling what the pressure actually is, but the feel is great - not twitchy, not over assisted - just right for the road feel. Easy to drive slow & park, but still firm enough on the freeway so it wont shoot you across three lanes of traffic if you sneeze!
No slop in the steering at all - very tight.

Turning radius is great, better then the OEM.

The ride is firm - not as stiff as I thought it would be, but a lot firmer than stock - but not at all uncomfortable. on the freeway its smooth as glass, on the surface roads it rides nice - like a performance car - new corvette or something - if you hit a stretch of really crappy roads with potholes & patches - you will know it.

Goin 40 mph and whipping in some hard Left & right turns on a road course, it has almost NO body roll & turns on a dime! But you will be tossed around inside pretty good, so get good seats with side bolsters & a nice harness if you wanna drive like that. I have Corbeau seats & the Corbeau 3 pt harness - so I'm in there good!

Only had 3 real issues:

1) Alignment:
I aligned to TCI spec, but could only get 3.5 caster - not enough - I wanted around 5. I ended it with 5 shims on the rear bolt & 1 on the front to get the 3.5 caster. I called TCI & they couldn't tell me anything regarding why - and Yes, I had the towers & stuff all correctly installed. The "issue" I came up with was the upper control arms. They are stamped L & R - but the ball joint is in the center, I think the arms were 9.5" each side or something - so they are both the same. I had to cut them and elongate the front tube & shorten the rear tube to "build in" 4 caster & then used the slots & shims to get anything more. Re-Powder coated them Satin Black & they ended up looking allot better in the engine compartment

-- with only 3.5 it still drives great, just that the the car didn't seem to want to "go back straight" after a turn like I thought it should. With 5.5 caster, when your in a hard turn, the car performs great & has a nice "pull" to want to straighten out, so if you were to let go of the wheel in the turn, it would snap to almost straight. But with to little caster, it will just keep on turning until you turn it straight again.

2) One of the best features and one of the selling point for me was the the way the engine mount supports are formed into the cross member - looks very slick & factory.
HOWEVER:The wrenching clearance to attach the hoses to the rack is to tight - cant barely get in there with one wrench, let alone two! - so I made extensions so I can disconnect the rack with connections that are about 8" away from the rack - nice & easy. I used 3/8 SST tube for the pressure side, & 3/8 R-p fuel hose for the return, all with JIC fittings.

3) - Power rack connections:
I spent way to much time trying to figure this out & hoping for no leaks. So here is the deal. On the rack, the holes are 9/16-18 Pressure, 5/8-18 Return. They use a nylon "o-ring" to seal (you can get the small nylon O-Rings for the adaptors from NAPA, PN 7-2585 - Big & 7-2586 - Small about .50 ea - can only use them one time - so get a few spares!) . Use -6 AN adaptors from SACHSE Rod Shop. Then just run -6 fittings & -6 or 3/8 hose from there to the pump. I would have GLADLY paid an extra few bucks to have the rack shipped from TCI with -6 adapters already installed!

Overall the kit is great, easy to install, and looks factory. Highly recommend.
So if ya dont mind chopping up your Mustang - I would go TCI!

1967 Mustang Coupe, Ford Performance 5.0 Crate Engine with GT40 Alum Heads, Silverfox AOD, March Performance Serpentine system, 2.5" Dual Exhaust with Electric Cut Outs, TCI Custom Front End, Ford 9" Rear 3.89 TracLock, Wilwood Brakes all Around, Rocket Fuel 15 Chrome Wheels, BFG Radial TA 205, 255 60/15, A/C, Power Windows, Power Locks, Power Trunk, Kenwood DNX DVD with GPS, Corbeau Sport Seats.
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post #13 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-10-2013, 01:09 PM
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TCI Update - Pics

Here are some Pics to show what I was talking about .
- The A-Arm mod - see pics BEFORE & AFTER. In the Before pics, you can see the way the shims are set & the A-Arm shaft is crooked to pull the Ball joint back for more caster. The AFTER pic shows the A-Arm shaft parallel to the tower with same shims an each side.

Maybe J from TCI has some insight to this A-Arm situation - perhaps I just overlooked something in the install?

-PS extension. See pics EXTENSION Top & EXTENSION Under - Its 3/8 sst tube with JIC flares & Fittings. This moves the connection point out & away from the Crossmember for easy access.

- Couple views of the TCI crossmember kit from under the car & behind the wheel.

I may just be more picky than most regarding symmetry & what not, so I decided to modify a few things as described. BUT, it did drive & perform very well before I modified the A-Arms - so I wouldn't say its necessary to modify the A-Arms.

Again, I really like the drastically improved handling of the car - totally a night & day difference.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Before A-Arm Mod_small.jpg (96.0 KB, 90 views)
File Type: jpg AFTER A-Arm Mod_small.jpg (93.6 KB, 88 views)
File Type: jpg Extension Top _small.jpg (88.5 KB, 75 views)
File Type: jpg Extension Under_small.jpg (90.3 KB, 74 views)
File Type: jpg Side View_small.jpg (93.4 KB, 79 views)
File Type: jpg Under View_small.jpg (91.6 KB, 71 views)

1967 Mustang Coupe, Ford Performance 5.0 Crate Engine with GT40 Alum Heads, Silverfox AOD, March Performance Serpentine system, 2.5" Dual Exhaust with Electric Cut Outs, TCI Custom Front End, Ford 9" Rear 3.89 TracLock, Wilwood Brakes all Around, Rocket Fuel 15 Chrome Wheels, BFG Radial TA 205, 255 60/15, A/C, Power Windows, Power Locks, Power Trunk, Kenwood DNX DVD with GPS, Corbeau Sport Seats.
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post #14 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-11-2013, 06:30 AM
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Originally Posted by TCI Engineering View Post
The Modular kit uses a different crossmember as well. You will need this crossmember in the meantime if you wanted to switch engines later.

-J

So I could use the modular kit with windsor mounts until I upgrade the motor?
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post #15 of 34 (permalink) Old 11-13-2013, 11:48 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by misterwhite View Post
So I could use the modular kit with windsor mounts until I upgrade the motor?

Yes, we have had a number of customers go this route.

-J
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