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IFS Heavy Duty Upgrades!

Discussion in 'Modified 1995-2001 Explorers' started by gmanpaint, November 7, 2010.

^^Searches ExplorerForum.com^^





  1. gmanpaint

    gmanpaint It's Always Something! Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    Small add on to the upgrades here. I swapped in a set of Fox coil over shocks with reservoirs. I want to be able to bomb down roads with bowling ball sized rocks at a higher rate of speed. :)

    Since I use them for front end lift, I added 2" to the coil length. After cranking the coil keeper nuts down to my desired lift height, they compressed about 1.5", which brings it back to the intended length for the shocks use. These are the 5.0 shocks and I used a 12" coil, instead of the 10", that's normally used for them.The following 2 pics will show what I mean with the coils.

    Fox 5.0 and 700x12 in coil.jpg

    The reservoirs are being held to the frame rails temporarily. I am making some tube mounts, and welding them to the frame rail tops. The Nitrogen line will pass over the top of the UCA, when mounted. It looks close to getting pinched, but it clears fine. This pic is at full droop, and as low as the arm goes. I will update this with a picture after the resi mounts are done.

    Pass 1.jpg

    So for those that are wanting to do this mod for lift, and keep asking me in PM's (lol), It doesn't matter what length shock you run over a 6" stroke, as you can only use 5-6" of travel anyways. Your C/V's can only take 2-3" droop, and 2-3" Up max. So what ever shock length you choose, just get the coils 2" longer then the shocks call for, from the manufacturer. Your limit straps are going to stop droop, and bump stops are going to stop up travel, so a 10"-14"- 22"- 36" shock can be installed, but only 5"- 6" of it's travel will be used. Make sense?
     
    Last edited: October 25, 2017
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  3. WormsExplorer

    WormsExplorer Elite Explorer

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    Makes a lot of sense
     
  4. CDW6212R

    CDW6212R Hauls the mail. Elite Explorer

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    Thanks Greg.

    That looks like a fine combination of parts. Do you know if those BTF arms are 1/4" longer, and if they can be any close length to that? I'm aiming for lowered as you know, and two of my trucks can't get a good alignment lowered an inch below stock. I'm thinking ahead and figuring more UCA length will help that.
     
  5. gmanpaint

    gmanpaint It's Always Something! Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    I think these arms would work for that Don, as they are made about 1/4" longer. But I also think that if your tires are under 35", the stock arms would work up to 2" lowering. I would work on the cam bolt area first before spending the cash on the btf arms.

    The SLA setup is maxed out with 34-35" tires, as the uca gets sucked in at both extreme ends of travel. Under 33", you can still get the camber set.
     
  6. PrerunnerManiac

    PrerunnerManiac Active Member

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    On this page you can get the lengths of the FOA shocks. The table below the 2.5" shocks is of the 2.0" shocks:
    http://f-o-a.com/tech-info/
     
  7. PrerunnerManiac

    PrerunnerManiac Active Member

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    I hope this coil-over conversion ends up working for you. I thought about it but the problem I see is the factory lower control arm was never made to support the weight of the Explorer, and on a 4wd application the shock angle you must use to clear the axle shafts is horrible.

    I also remember RCD's version of this conversion used to include a gusset kit for the upper shock mounts, and I still don't think that is enough to support the weight of the truck either.

    Again these are just the concerns I had about this type of conversion.
     
  8. gmanpaint

    gmanpaint It's Always Something! Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    My rig has been running coil overs all across the country, on & off road since 2010. They work great for me.

    The fox setup is the 2nd set I have installed now on this rig. I don't run the rcd kit, mine is home made, including thicker gussets.

    If installed properly, you won't suffer bind or interference. Proper limit strap placement protects everything from damage.

    Clearance pics.

    coil cv space.jpg
    uca coil space.jpg
     
    Last edited: October 26, 2017
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  9. CDW6212R

    CDW6212R Hauls the mail. Elite Explorer

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    I appreciate all of your time Greg, making it work for you, and showing others how it's done.
     
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  10. boominXplorer

    boominXplorer Elite Ranger Elite Explorer

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    I put about 80k miles on my rcd kit on my v8 mountaineer and the only issue I had was the crappy bilstien coilovers that came in the kit. I snapped 2 of them at the shaft where it mounts to the lower eyelet. Luckly both of them where at slow speed wheeling and I was able to limp off the trail on the bump stop. I'm now running fox coilovers on my ranger for 15k miles and haven't had an issue. I am using a superlift drop braket setup now but will be swapping to my old rcd front end and going to 14" coils soon to gain another inch of height.

    On the mountaineer I used everything including the gussets from the rcd kit. Never had an issue with the upper shock tower or welds cracking on the braces. My ranger has a much more stout gusset setup on the factory shock tower than the RCD kit came with, mainly because the limit strap ties in. I don't have the best pics but these will do.

    20170820_115345.jpg

    20170820_115947.jpg
     
    Last edited: October 26, 2017
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  11. PrerunnerManiac

    PrerunnerManiac Active Member

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    That's great, I'm glad it worked out for you. Where did you get your tie rods from?
     
  12. CDW6212R

    CDW6212R Hauls the mail. Elite Explorer

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    Thanks Boomin, you have a V8 in that too. What shock and spring worked well for that weight? Where should I begin when I get to that, the sizes for being lowered about 2"?
     
  13. boominXplorer

    boominXplorer Elite Ranger Elite Explorer

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    The inner steering adapter is a camburg piece, the rest is "custom" built. I'm actually planning on removing the outer heims and replacing with chevy high angle tie rods. I'll have to ream the knuckle to make them fit. I drive my truck a good bit on the street, put about 10k miles a year on it and these outer heims wear out real quick on the road. The inners are FK and seem to last a ton longer.

    I need to look up my specs but I'm pretty sure my shocks are 2.5" shaft 6.5" travel with the extended lower eyelets. Im running 12" 800lb coils now but my new coils are 14" 675lb.

    20170820_115314.jpg

    20170820_121747.jpg

    20170820_115236.jpg
     
    Last edited: October 26, 2017
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  14. CDW6212R

    CDW6212R Hauls the mail. Elite Explorer

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    Thanks.

    Oh BTW, how do your doors open and close with the truck twisted like that?
     
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  15. boominXplorer

    boominXplorer Elite Ranger Elite Explorer

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    When I flex it like that I try to not open the doors, there is alot of flex in the doors since my ranger is a 4dr. The frame is nowhere near as stout on the ranger as explorer so it twists very easily. Hell I probably get an extra 2" of flex just out the frame haha. The explorer has the same issue if you flex it out and try to open the tailgate, it will hit the taillight when you go to close it.

    20170820_115328.jpg
     
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  16. CDW6212R

    CDW6212R Hauls the mail. Elite Explorer

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    Oh, I never thought of the hatch. I've noticed the door issue lots of times with a floor jack under one end or corner of my cars. It's just best to not open or close anything with the body cocked from any direction.
     
  17. gmanpaint

    gmanpaint It's Always Something! Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    Yeah, It is fun to get out of, or back into the rig, when flexed like that on the trails, but sometimes, you just have to do it. :D
     
  18. WormsExplorer

    WormsExplorer Elite Explorer

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    I totally agree You have to get out and take pictures. its just a requirement LOL
     
  19. gavin

    gavin Elite Explorer

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    looks like the steering kit Dixon Bros Racing made for their long-travel suspension.
    Steering Clevis Kit
    http://www.dixonbrosracing.com/content/view/8/2/
    Doesn't seem to be available stand-alone anymore, even on Vegas Dezert Fab who apparently took over building the kits?
     
  20. gmanpaint

    gmanpaint It's Always Something! Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    Camburg makes a set of expensive Chromoly inner TRE's.

    V-D fab didn't continue making everything D-Bros made when they took over. Bummer too, as that is where I got the rear DOM LCA cross member from.
     
    Last edited: October 28, 2017
  21. bigred4x4

    bigred4x4 Off-road enthusiast

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    Yea those tie rods are nice! You should do a write up on those!

    There has to be a way that something like that could be fabbed at home. Or I wonder if something could be welded in place to strengthen a stock inner tie rod like a steel pipe or tubing and shorten and expand the boot and leave just enough thread space to do alignments. Most failures I've seen has been a bent inner tie rod (they are fairly thin and flimsy looking.
     
    Last edited: October 31, 2017

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