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Stage 3 Blog
Posted by Jason Locke on 6/6/2014 to Install guides

We're big fans of BedRug, and we even had a complete BedRug liner on our 2012 F150 5.0L Project Truck, due to it not having the best spray-in liner in the world. Our current 2012 F150 EcoBoost FX4 actually has a pretty high-quality spray-in liner, but if it has a flaw, it's extremely slippery and rough. To fix the issue, we grabbed a more basic BedRug Bed Mat and a tailgate mat to help alleviate the situation. While a little less intensive than a complete liner, these mats still have BedRug's excellent levels of quality and fitment. Installation was also extremely easy. A few strips and patches of 3M tape, some patting down, and we were through. The BedRug bed mat and tailgate mat are good upgrades and didn't leave much for us to complain about.

2004-2014 F150 BedRug Bed Mat Install

Posted by Jason Locke on 6/6/2014 to Install guides

The Undercover Swing Case doesn't look like much at first glance, but the thing is actually extremely handy to have around and looks pretty neat and clean in the bed. Given that we here at Stage 3 aren't huge fans of bulky toolboxes, we opted to give the Swing Cases a shot on our 2012 F150 EcoBoost FX4 Project Truck, and we're very glad we did. The Swing Case had a pretty large internal capacity, didn't take up a ton of room in the bed, and was extremely easy to install. We're totally happy with the fit, finish, and look of our Swing Case, especially since it fits under our truck's tonneau cover. You really just can't beat that.

2004-2014 F150 Undercover Swing Case (Driver) Install

Posted by Jason Locke on 6/6/2014 to Install guides

Some installs are beautiful, serene, bolt-on experiences that our friends down at Extreme Performance fly through while barely breaking a sweat. Other's are nightmarish amalgamations of pain and suffering unlike anything the world has ever seen. But these Husky Liner Rear Wheel Liners for the 2006 to 2014 F150s gave us what was the most terrifying experience that we've ever had. Kris shook in sorrow and fear, Jay recoiled in disgust, Dylan sobbed in the fetal position, and I wrote a stirring and heartfelt goodbye note to my family. The Husky Rear Wheel Liners were almost too much to bear for us and our 2012 F150 EcoBoost FX4, but somehow we persevered.

2006-2014 F150 Husky Liners Rear Wheel Liners Install

Posted by Jason Locke on 6/6/2014 to Install guides

Everybody knows that the intake systems on the 2004 to 2008 F150s, especially on the big Triton 5.4L V8. The odd scoop into an over-engine airbox system just begs for heat soak and restriction. This is one of the reasons that a cold air intake is one of the most popular modifications for these trucks. Our 2007 F150 5.4L Project Truck definitely needed a power and efficiency boost, so we turned to our old friends at aFe for help and they sent out one of their Stage 2 Cold Air Intake kits for the 2004 to 2008 F150 5.4Ls. aFe's intake is a pretty easy, drop-in replacement kit for the 5.4L's factory air scoop and air box that delivers much improved airflow efficiencies and performance. The aFe kit comes with everything you need, and doesn't leave a whole heck of a lot to complain about. Not to mention that it looks pretty cool under the hood.

2004-2008 F150 5.4L aFe Stage 2 Cold Air Intake Install

Posted by Jason Locke on 6/6/2014 to Install guides

Undercover's Swing Cases are a pretty new thing to us here at Stage 3. None of us have personally had them on a truck, and we were pretty fascinated by them when we first heard about them. Long story short, we got a pair of the in and went off to install the passenger side Swing Case onto our 2007 F150 5.4L Project Truck. While at first glance the Swing Cases don't seem like a "must-have" upgrade, when we finally got a real look at them, we were much more impressed. The sing cases are surprisingly practical for day-to-day use and are incredibly easy to install and operate. Now, our install on our 2007 F150 was mildly complicated by our plastic Ford bedliner (more on that later), but it was all very straightforward, and we're more than happy with the result.

2004-2014 F150 Swing Case Install (Plastic Bed Liner

Posted by Jason Locke on 6/6/2014 to Install guides

The stock honeycomb grille on our 2007 F150 5.4L Project Truck wasn't doing it any favors, especially since it's getting a "Halloween" black with orange styling theme. Anyway, the factory grille needed to go, and what better thing to replace it with than one of the most popular and most aggressive grilles for the 2004 to 2008 F150s: the SmittyBilt M1. SmittyBilt's grille looks tough before its even on the truck, and despite needing to be cut into the factory grille shell, installation was pretty straightforward. The end result was a whole different look for our F150, and once the chrome grille surround is its proper black. In any case, we were extremely pleased with the result, and cutting out the stock grille was less of hassle than it firs appeared.

2004-2008 F150 SmittyBilt M1 Grille Install

Posted by Jason Locke on 6/6/2014 to Install guides

The 2010 to 2014 SVT Raptors are some of the baddest trucks on the road, and they come equipped with three amber grille lights to set them apart from the rest of the F150s out on the road. While a 2004 to 2008 F150 will probably never look exactly like a Raptor, you can at least get those pretty slick grille lights with our 2004 to 2008 F150 Raptor-Style Grille Light Kit. Since we were going for a pretty aggressive look on our 2007 F150 5.4L Project Truck, these grille lights made for a perfect upgrade. Overall install is extremely easy with just a little splicing thrown in. The good news is that the grille light kit comes with more than enough wiring to get the job done. In the end, we were very pleased with the install and the final look.

2004-2008 F150 Raptor-Style Grille Light Install

Posted by Jason Locke on 6/5/2014 to Install guides

Like a huge amount of our customers, we here at Stage 3 are big fans of LED third brake lights. While not super extravagant, they are a nice touch to just about any F150, and since we're going for a blacked-out and orange styling theme on our 2007 F150 5.4L, we looked to our friends over at Recon for a little help. Their answer was to send us an entire 2004 to 2008 F150 Complete Lighting Package, which includes one of their F150 LED Smoked Third Brake Lights. Recon's brake light comes with a lightly smoked lens with a black housing that makes it perfect for replacing the boring stock third brake light with something a bit more aggressive and stylish. What's even better is that Recon's third brake light is extremely easy to install.

2004-2008 F150 Recon Third Brake Light Install

Posted by Jason Locke on 6/5/2014 to Install guides

The only way to get serious with a totally blacked-out styling theme is to get rid of those red, boring factory taillights. And since we're pretty intent on turning our 2007 F150 5.4L into a rolling Halloween mobile with black styling and orange accents, we needed to pull out all the stops and get our taillight situation squared away. That's where our friends over at Recon come in with their smoked LED taillight kit for the 2004 to 2008 F150s. Recon's taillights have a mildly smoked lens and a totally black housing that gives them a pretty awesome look, that's only made better by the extremely bright LEDs arranged in two columns of six with unique reflectors that provide a great look. These taillights are part of Recon's complete 2004 to 2008 F150 lighting package, that they were kind enough to send us for our own devious uses.

2004-2008 F150 Recon Smoked LED Taillight Install

Posted by Jason Locke on 6/5/2014 to Install guides

A Stage 3 Project Truck just wouldn't be a Stage 3 Project Truck without a few things from Recon. Any by a few things, I really mean a whole bunch of aggressive aftermarket lighting components to bring out the best in our F150. Our friends over at Recon were generous enough to send over one of their Complete Lighting Packages for the 2004 to 2008 F150s for our very own 2007 F150 5.4L XLT Project Truck, which included this pair of awesome projector headlights with a black housing. Our black project truck is going for a black and orange "Halloween-style" theme, so these headlights were a great match for our slightly evil intentions. Install is pretty straightforward, though the LED halos and accent strip require some cutting and splicing. Anyway, we were extremely happy with both the look and fit of these lights, and here' how we did it.

2004-2008 F150 Recon Headlight Install

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