I got into making kickdown rods in 2004 when I sold my last restored Mustang, a 69 302 Coupe (pictured above) and could not find the kickdown rod for it due to just moving from our home in the country to the suburbs of Albany. This car was the last of 5 vehicles done in my lifetime of restoring cars or trucks and as anyone who has done one knows, it takes a lot out of you and your pocket to do it right. A ’58 Ford F600 stake body truck was my first project followed by our family farms 65 F100 4 X 4 pickup truck. A few years later came the ’67 Sunbeam Tiger, then the 68 Mustang 390 GT and then the 69 302 Coupe. Needless to say, restoring cars as a hobby can sometimes be overwhelming both physically and financially but the feeling of accomplishment is surely there when it's completed. After finishing the 69 Coupe, I decided that that would be my last restoration. I tweaked that last car and tuned the engine as well as possible, used it for one season and then decided to sell it. The car was sold to a man living in Massuchusetts and he drove it 3 hours back to his home uneventfully.
During our move, the kickdown rod for that car had become lost and was somewhere in the house we had bought, to be found at some later time. The car was sold without it with the promise to the buyer that when the rod was found, it would be sent to him. About 2 months later, while organizing our storage area in the house, I found the kickdown rod buried in the bottom of a long box with curtain rods in it.
As I held the rod staring at it in detail, I thought, “ I could probably make this” and set out to do so, first by bending the rod with a manual tubing bender. The next step was designing a pressing mandrel for forming each end of the rod in a way that was done by the OEM. They are simply pressed out on a 20ton hydraulic press in our basement shop. Then a plastic bushing was needed to install in the hole made in the end of the rod to form the carburetor kickdown rod connection to the carburetor and the transmission kickdown lever. I quickly found that the bushing that I needed was not available for a reasonable price so I set out to machine my own out of raw stock. A decision to upgrade to Delrin material was made as it has better wear and longer lasting qualities than nylon. The OEM used nylon because it is less expensive. (and Delrin probably was not available at the time some of these rods were made)
The need to design a forming mandrel to permanently install the bushing then became apparent so that was done with some trial and error but was finally achieved satisfactorily and is now still used to form the plastic "life saver" shaped bushings in the rod ends.
" THIS GUY IS A CLASS ACT!! IN ALL CATEGORIES FOLLOWS UP ALL THE WAY TO THE END! "
- EBAY BUYER OF 66-71 FORD TRANSMISSION KICKDOWN ROD 390, 4V FULL SIZE CAR
Subject: 66 mustang kick down linkage conversion
Message: I just installed my kick down linkage that I ordered from your company on my 66 mustang convertible. I fought with the original cable set up with frustration. The linkage I received from you was a quick and simple installation that only took a few minutes. I had an aftermarket Holley 4 bbl carb and it fit perfect. Just took the car out for a test ride and it worked perfect. Smoked the tires on take off with positive shifting through out. At lower speeds, the transmission down shifted just like it should. Thanks a lot!
As years went by and before I knew it, I had acquired more than 54 different kickdown rods, all for Ford (and other Ford) cars and trucks. Most recently, pickup truck kickdown rods have begun to be popular sellers and my line of rods for those vehicles has grown nicely. Worthy of noting is the fact that only 304 STAINLESS STEEL TUBE IS USED TO MAKE OUR KICKDOWN RODS. THEY WILL NEVER RUST OR CORRODE and are as elegant looking a material as can be found for an auto part.. Each one is lightly polished for added appeal.
As time went on and Ford enthusiasts noticed the quality of my parts, they began asking if I could make this part or that part for this or that (Ford) car as well. Those inquiries led me to expand even further into making parts that were very rare and most totally unavailable, which is my forte’. That is what led me to making throttle cable brackets, transmission fill tubes, engine dipstick tubes, Toploader 4 speed manual transmission shift tabs and other parts, to mention a few.. All parts are custom made IN AMERICA BY ME, AN AMERICAN CRAFTSMAN AND VETERAN and we take pride in the quality of each and every part we sell. All parts made by us are those that are, for the most part, unavailable anywhere (other than used or NOS parts) or are in need of quality improvement upgrading according to our standards.
I have recently begun to offer custom kickdown rod fabrication for the enthusiasts who have high rise intake manifolds or carburetor spacers in excess of the stock spacer (1/4"). Adding height to their configurations makes the stock kickdown rod unusable unless the person has welding or fabrication skills to extend the reach or length of the existing kickdown rod. Extensions are available to lengthen rods for converting to a 4 barrel from a 2 barrel but I don't recommend their installation.
We continue to offer everything we make on Ebay under the Ebay name of KickdownRodsGaloreandMore. We have maintained a TOP SELLER RATING by treating customers with respect and understanding and by getting customers shipments out in a timely manner. Most items are shipped via USPS Priority, go out the next business day and in most cases will be delivered within the US in 3 days or less. Check out our feedback on Ebay while you are there. Sales through our website will be treated in the very same manner.
We suggest that international customers use Ebay’s Global Shipping Program as shipping boxes over 24 inches long (our kickdown rod boxes are 30” long) can be quite expensive to ship out of the USA.
SATISFACTION IS GUARANTEED!