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1991 explorer build

1991 explorer 4x4 build

Hi my name is Mike and I have been watching this site for a while and now that I have started my explorer project I figured I would post it here.

I started out with a stock 91 explorer 4.0 auto 4x4. I picked it up in good running condition for $1000. Since this is not my DD I am taking my time making it a little more offroad worthy.

My plans for this explorer are to use it as a weekend camping vehicle that will see mostly desert trails and mountain roads. With that in mind I am more focused on durability than rock crawl capability. I already have a large amount of parts sitting in the garage and am starting to build this thing. Any ideas or problems you see with what I am doing let me know.I am going to work at putting pictures up and parts list.

Parts list for now

Front suspension
-skyjacker drop brackets for beams
-deaver superflex coils from f150 #csh57
-extended radius arms using stock arm and 2"x1/4" dom tube. bushings not hiems
-extended brake lines
-d35 with 4.56
- upgraded u-joints and c-clip eliminator
-manual hubs
-Fox 2.0x10" shocks
-upgraded swaybar
-Dual piston calipers from 96 ranger

Rear Suspension
-l/s 8.8 with 4.56
-stock leaf springs with SOA
-Fox 2.0x12" shocks
-disk brakes from 97 explorer

-stock and will probably stay that way

-manual transfer case with home built shifter and linkage

-5 d window steel wheels
- 4 new bfg km2 33/10.50/r15
- 1 used bfg at 33/10.50/r15

-stonecrusher style steering with chevy tre's

First picture is when i pulled it into the garage. We stripped the front suspension off. since im using coils from an early F150 (deaver superflex 4 in lift) i cut the coil buckets off as well. I have skyjacker drop brackets, have built my own radius arms using the stock arms, I am working on mounting coil buckets from an early bronco.


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I started the front bumper this weekend. It is similar to the rear bumper design. All 3/16 plate except 1/4 for frame bracket and winch mount plate.


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I have had the truck down at my work for almost 2 weeks now. I did the manual trans and manual t-case swap. That was easy. Everything bolts right up and no fab work required. While it was in the shop i got alot of the maintainance stuff done. I ended up going alot further than i needed and wanted too but i guess its worth it for peace of mind when on long trips. This thing runs like a new truck now and I love the manual trans. I replaced the A/C system and converted it to r134 and put a cd player in it so its comfortable to ride around in. Still working on the front bumper. All that I need to do is grind it and paint it so that should be on soon.
Anyone have ideas for a boot for the t-case shifter. I was thinking of going to the junkyard and looking around to see what i can find.


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Got the front bumper mounted. I am going to leave it like this until i get a winch then maybe add a stinger bar onto it.


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I really like that bumper. Looks great. You are going to have to invest in some rocker guards/sliders to keep the body looking nice.

Your Ex looks amazing. Great job!

Built a rubber bushing for my manual t case shifter. It works real good and has cut the noise way down. I also started on a rear tire carrier using heims as the hinge point. I may not be pretty but it will function just fine. I was going to use a spindle style hinge but I couldn't shake this idea from my head so i figured I would give it a try. I still have a ways to go on this to finish but I will post pics of what I have so far


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I rebuilt/valved the rear fox shocks this week. When i bought them they were valved for a fullsize truck. I also did some more work to the tire swinger. The latch and stop on the passenger side turned out very nice and holds the swinger solid with no movment at all. I am now in hurry up mode for this thing. I leave for a Moab trip in 5 days. I need to just get it working for now so i can make the trip.


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Finished the tire carrier for now. I will mount a fuel can, shovel, and highlift when i get back from Moab. I spent all day on the tire swinger and finishing a lot of loose ends with the truck. Of course when i tried to start it to move it would not start. The ground cable on the battery is not connecting well. I'll need to fix that Monday night


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Nice work, you should sell a few.

Nice work, you should sell a few.

It would be way too time consuming to make something like this for a profit. Took probably 10 hours to make the tire swing and mount. Next time around a have a few more ideas to make it look a little better. It is really strong. The only thing that has any give when hanging off the swinger is the bumper


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Followed the advise i found on this website http://www.explorerforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=250186&highlight=battery+cable (thanks tbars4) and replaced both battery cable with Napa cables. Everything connected right up without a problem. Spent the rest of the night packing the explorer. Leaving tomorrow for Colorado and then spending all next week in Moab. Any advise for trails in Moab area. Fins and things, Elephant hill, Dome plateau, lathrop canyon. what do you guys think? I will be going with a 84 j5 with limited slip and 32's and 03 ranger with lots of suspension and 35's and torsen diff.would love to do White rim trail but i need to be at the campground in Moab every night

..:scratch:..How did I miss this thread?

...I need to get some time and read up on this build..:biggthump

Hope to see your rig out at Truck Haven some time. Looks great!

Just got back last night from a vacation in the explorer. Went all the way to Loveland CO for a wedding and then stopped in Moab on the way home for a week. I put just under 3000 miles on the explorer with only minor issues. Moab area was a blast. We did Potash canyon trail,part of White Rim,Lathrop Canyon,Longs canyon,Gemini bridges,Dome plateau,Onion Creek,and my favorite Fins and Things


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..Truck looks great in that environment..:biggthump

..What were the issues you had and do you happen to know your mpg's hwy and offroad during the trip?

Passenger rear doorlatch failed so door won't open and passenger front window wont roll up or down. The fuel pressure regulator seeps when cold. Other than that I had no problems.I ran the a/c for hours when moving at speeds under 20 and never got even close to overheating. For MPG I got a best of 20.3 on highway going with wind to my back. I usually got 17-18 on all other tanks

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I really like this build.. nicely done!

btw what did you do with the stock auto trans, t-case rims and tires? :)