Evan J. Smith
September 16, 2006

Step By Step

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Mmfp_0609_05z 1999_ford_f150_lightning Magnum_supercharger
After disconnecting the throttle cable, the EGR, the blower drive belt, and the blower retaining bolts, he removed the Magnum blower.
Mmfp_0609_06z 1999_ford_f150_lightning Intercooler_core
This revealed the intercooler core, which we'll be reusing.
Mmfp_0609_07z 1999_ford_f150_lightning Core_function
The core is like a small radiator in that it removes heat from the incoming air and provides a cooler, denser inlet charge. It was lifted out and then unbolted from the midplate that sits between the intake manifold and the blower.
Mmfp_0609_08z 1999_ford_f150_lightning Manifold
When removing the blower on a Lightning or Cobra, you'll find quite a bit of oil in the manifold. This is normal, as a small amount of oil is sucked into the intake.

Up front is a clear sight glass for easy oil-level inspection. The Whipple requires only 100,000-mile oil changes (in the blower) and is 50-state emission legal, too.

Better still, Whipple's Lightning kit comes complete and is a direct bolt-on system, including all the hoses, clamps, hardware, an S&B filter, and an air inlet box. In addition, the Whipple's large inlet comes already mounted to the blower, and can accept stock and aftermarket throttle bodies. Because of the axial inlet at the rear, it will fit under the stock hood. The kit is also offered with or without a Ford Racing flash programmer, and a polished or satin finish.

Another benefit is the air bypass valve, located under the blower in the midplate. According to Whipple, "It's the best-kept secret in forced induction. That's because when properly installed between the supercharger and the throttle body, it allows the supercharger to become extremely efficient in terms of economy and parasitic power loss. The bypass is operated by a vacuum actuator control unit that is normally closed. When vacuum is high (during idle, when cruising, or on deceleration), the actuator opens the valve, equalizing the pressure throughout the inlet system. When boost is required, vacuum is decreased and the valve instantly closes, causing pressure to increase in the cylinders."

The Fridge
What began as a stock '99 Lightning running 13s has become a serious street brawler capable of 10s, even though it only did it once-a 10.999. Still, it sounds better than 11.0. Over time, the Fridge has had many of the popular Lightning modifications, from shorty headers to long tubes, from chips, to pulleys, to air-intake systems, and more.

It sports a 0.020-inch-over long-block from JDM Engineering with ported heads, Crower cams, JDM/Kook's headers, a JDM electric fan kit, a Level 10 transmission, 3.73 gears, and Metco traction bars. Topping the package (until this article) was a Magnum Powers blower and single-blade throttle body, which provided excellent power and reliable service. Heck, it got us in the 10s. We use the truck virtually every day, yet it remains docile and a quick commuter with catalytic converters. Did we mention it passes New Jersey emissions?