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Dana 44 and 3 link install

Discussion in 'Solid Axle Swap Registry' started by Michael, November 11, 2005.

^^Searches ExplorerForum.com^^





  1. Michael

    Michael Moderator Emeritus

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    Since the AZ wheeling season is finally upon us, I decided it was time to put my new truck in the shop for a little tweaking to better handle the trails around here. A little about what I started with:
    [​IMG]

    Specs: 5 speed, manual tcase, 5.13's, discs and no slip in rear, 37 MTR's(street) and 36 TSL's(rocks).

    The goal for this project was to build something that was able to drive to the hardest trails in AZ, run them successfully, and then drive home. It must also be able to be driven everyday as this is my main source of transportation. All decisions were made with a bias towards trail performance, instead of street comfort.

    Build Specs:

    Dana 44 - Left over from my last project.
    - Warn shafts, CTM's, Detroit, 5.13's, Hi-steer setup, etc.
    King Coilovers - 14" travel, 2" body
    King Airbumps - 4" travel
    Custom 3 link w/ panhard rod

    All fabrication work is being performed by 4 Wheelers Supply here in Phoenix.

    Work started Monday. Progress as of lunch today.
    [​IMG]
    Old front end has been stripped out, frame rail have been ground smooth in preperation for reinforcement plating, axle location has been determined, ride height is set. Items in the engine compartment have been relocated in preperation for the shock hoops and the crossbar that will connect them across the engine bay(next two pics).
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    I hope to stop in again at the shop Tues or Wed next week (it is a 45 drive away) and have better progress pics of the actual layout of the links, as well as the hoops for the coilovers.

    Estimated completion date is sometime the first week of December.
     
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  3. rookieshooter

    rookieshooter Moderator Emeritus

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    Can't wait to see more pics.
     
  4. james t

    james t Elite Explorer Moderator Emeritus

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    Im sure it will be just as sick as your old one. :)
     
  5. SVO

    SVO Moderator Emeritus/Doctor Moderator Emeritus

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    Awsome, after having driven Red Bull just after it came out of TX Auto Gear, I know for a fact that this rig will also be off the deep end for SICKNESS!

    P.S. got to see Red Bull again last monday, it was like a familliar face with different make-up.


    P.S.S. damnit you have the tail lights I need :mad:





    Jeff - :navajo:
     
  6. 410Fortune

    410Fortune River season Staff Member Moderator

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    I am confused, you are starting over with another 4 door explorer? hahaha You remind me of family :)

    Why? I figured the next thing we would see you working on is a tube buggy...
    This green Ex has changed hands a few times now has it not?
     
  7. Michael

    Michael Moderator Emeritus

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    I started over with another 4 door because I wanted something versatile right now. I got rid of my othe truck, trailer and tow rig because I bought a townhouse with no garage. So, this build needed to be streetable and daily driveable. Tube buggy will come later, I tend to get bored with things pretty quickly so changes happen often.

    Yes, this green truck has been owned by several of the TX crew. I bought it from Kris Guilbeaux a few months ago.

    Jeff - Send me some regular tailights and you can have these. I'm not highly attached to one kind of light versus another.
     
  8. 410Fortune

    410Fortune River season Staff Member Moderator

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    Sweet man, put that sucker to good use and congrats on the townhome :)
     
  9. FROADER

    FROADER Moderator Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    Nice, oh and I know you want to trade me those 37" MTRs for my tires... ;)

    Can't wait to see this thing.
     
  10. SVO

    SVO Moderator Emeritus/Doctor Moderator Emeritus

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    PM me your address and I'll send you these new Explorer tails I have here on the Nasty Hoe, Thanx!
     
  11. Dannyboy

    Dannyboy Other Make & Models Mod Elite Explorer Moderator Emeritus

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    4 wheelers did some work on my front axle, mainly internals. I was more than satisfied with their work. Sorry I haven't had a chance to hook up and wheel yet. We will definitely have to make it happen when this one gets completed.
     
  12. bmxking5

    bmxking5 Well-Known Member

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    :drool: Looks good. Can't wait to see some more progress pics.
     
  13. james t

    james t Elite Explorer Moderator Emeritus

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    Trkmagik has his old red one now named "red bull". Its the same as it was only now w/ fullwidth 44-9" and 38" TSL's.
     
  14. TheFox88

    TheFox88 Active Member

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    Good looking project. Congragulations on the new rig.
     
  15. 034x4

    034x4 Active Member

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    Looks sweet, can't wait to see more pics of this set-up.
     
  16. Kris Guilbeaux

    Kris Guilbeaux Elite Demon Secretary Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    OMG My Baby is going Solid... YAY.. yeah this Truck was Brians then mine then Micheals. now Brian own the Red one Micheal owned.. So we played Musical Explorers back in August.. LOL
     
  17. Trckmagik

    Trckmagik Ole Bag Moderator Emeritus

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    Look great Michael. I am glad to see my old green explorer has had two great owners, since I owned it :)

    Red Bull is in very good hands now and likes its new feet :)
     
    Last edited: November 13, 2005
  18. Rick

    Rick Pumpkin Pilot Staff Member Admin Elite Explorer

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    Looks good Michael. Now that Hammer's rig is about done we'll have a pretty good crew down here again:thumbsup:
     
  19. Randall

    Randall Demon4x4 Member

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  20. Michael

    Michael Moderator Emeritus

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    Update time. All the links are mocked into place. The rear crossmember for the lower and upper links is also mocked in place. It will not be removable which will make removal of the trans a challenge, but possible.
    [​IMG]

    Drivers side lower link mount
    [​IMG]

    Upper and lower link mounts on Pass side. The track bar mount will be tied in here as well.
    [​IMG]

    They have also completed the plating on the drivers framerail to strengthen the steering box mount. I can only dream of being able to weld like that. :eek:
    [​IMG]


    We have run into a few snags though. When my 44 was previously built the steering knuckles were incorrectly machined for the highsteer arms. This is going to cause strength/safety concerns on a daily driven truck. So...new knuckles were in order. Since the Dedenbear knuckles aren't out yet, I got a set from Crane. They are already machined and tapped for the steering arms. I also ordered today new steering arms from Sky Manufacturing. They didn't have exactly what we needed, but had something that will work.

    Robb also cycled the front suspension today, I missed it by a half hour so no pics. With 6 inches of uptravel, we are only going to have to trim the inner fender a little at the front to clear the 37's at full stuff and full steer. The outer fender will need a fair amount of tweaking to work :hammer:

    Overall the project is running a little behind and overbudget, just like we planned :p
     
  21. Dannyboy

    Dannyboy Other Make & Models Mod Elite Explorer Moderator Emeritus

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    I drove past 4wheelers twice today and looked for the truck, it must have it's own stall there that I couldn't see. Good looking pics, I just might get the itch to go 4 link with coilovers (we shoulda looked for a group discount)

    I wrecked bad on a dirtbike sunday and have a ton of pain in my foot and back, so I'm driving the Explorer since it's easier to get in and out of. I put mine through emissions today and passed! My truck has been running great and is ready to hit trails. (kinda funny that I'm hurting to get in and out of my DD so my Explorer on 37s is the answer to an easier vehicle to drive!)
     

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