2000 Mountaineer Expedition Build FW D44/9" SAS | Page 4 | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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2000 Mountaineer Expedition Build FW D44/9" SAS

My DD has turned into a project vehicle. I am building it up to be a capable overland/expedition rig for long range trips to include camping and all around adventuring. :) We have a few trips tentatively planned already. I just need to get this thing going as we have much that we want to see.
I will be making a roof rack to carry a few items, but most will be carried in a trailer, so to keep from putting too much weight up top. Also, it will be nice to have the roof top tent set up on top of the trailer, so I can unhook and leave the "base camp" in place and go wheeling.

Here is what I have so far:

2000 Mercury Mountaineer 5.0
Black Rock 942 16x8 steel wheels
255/85/16 BFG KM2s load range E

Still needed:
Rear bumper, spare tire/fuel carrier
Roof rack
Trailer (have plans made up, but have other priorities)
and a lot more stuff... :)

Well, thats it. Stay tuned for updates.

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Well, the Mountaineer did not really get any testing before its first shakedown run. I took off on Friday, drove 200 miles, and I still have almost 800 more miles to go before i find myself back home. It will be interesting since it is relatively untested. Wish me luck! :D

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over 500 miles so far, and I averaged 18.7 MPG. (highway and in city (Minneapolis) hand calculated based on actual miles driven and actual gallons used since the computer is off by a factor of 1.17)

Not too shabby! :D

1144 miles, and 63.7 gallons of gas later... I have a total (highway and stop and go Minneapolis rush hour traffic) of 17.959 MPG.

Not to mention that there is no vibrations, and everything works great. One other thing, there was almost 500 lbs of gear (tools, ammo, guns) in the back.

That is something to be happy about. :D

Nice, I think I'm getting around 15 mixed driving. it's hard to tell because I forget to clock the miles on the Garman. Still need to gear.

I did a little bit of calculating, and as of right now, I have $3460 into the Mountaineer, and that includes the original purchase price of the truck.

Not bad. :D




Last tank was mostly highway miles, and I averaged 22 mpg. Cant complain about that...

The KM2s are working surprisingly great in winter conditions. We got a little over 6" of very heavy, wet snow on top of a layer of ice from the last few days of rain. The combination of tall skinny tires is magic in snow. I can't wait till we get some real deep snow to really test it out.

Here is a pic of when I got to school. There is not much snow here (where I took the picture), but everything is ice. I already had to help a teacher push his lowered beemer with low pro racing tires into his parking spot.


The next logical step:



Slowly coming along:

Very logical :thumbsup: lol

What paint/method are you using? appeared to have worked very well!

Rough up the paint with sandpaper, do a coat of primer, sand anything that needs it then spray with Krylon. I love Krylon. I use it on my guns, too.

Thanks! I have spent many years in many different ARMY vehicles, and OD green has always been one of my favorites, so this was just the way to go for me.

I am going to expand this build thread to include my trailer/camper.

I had been looking for a trailer that I could use for storage and moving. In my searches, I found one that can also be used for camping (its also set up for ice fishing). Its a 2005 6x12 Haulmark. It is slightly used, but in really good shape. It has been lined with spray insulation and then paneled over that. There has been more lights added, and a stereo that will run off either the vehicle or 12v battery in the trailer. It is also plumbed for a propane heater big enough to heat a garage. The guy said that they went a little overboard on the heater, and the trailer is so well insulated that the pilot light is just about enough to heat it. :D

I am planning, in the future, to replace the tires with the same tires and wheels that I have on the Mountaineer, so in a worse case scenario, if I were to get two flats, my trailer spare is the same as the truck.



Sams club is no joke! (Stocking the camps snackery to the tune of roughly $950!) :D

That trailer looks fun! Great to get out of any weather and store all camping gear. And small enough to be able to drag easily everywhere!

Well, I finally got pulled over in the Mountaineer, but not for speeding.

I drive 65 tops in the Mountaineer, as I like getting good mileage. However, this was in town, I was going 20 in a 25 and there was a cop behind me. All of the sudden he flipped his lights on, so I pulled over thinking I must have a tail or brake light out or something.

He comes up and asks me for registration, and then says that when he ran my plates, it came back as a white vehicle. :D

I never would have thought that I needed to call the DMV and have it changed! Well, it is changed now. ;) The wife and I had a good laugh about it.

The cop was a nice kid, and just gave me a warning.

Lol, thats funny. I restored my 79' Trans Am and its red now instead of brown. Guess I should call and change it. Its been that way for 8yrs now.

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Wow, its been a little while since I posted in here. The D30 swap never happened, but now I have to figure out where to put these two little guys... ;)


I am still undecided on what I want to do for front suspension. I have two D44s, one leaf sprung and one coil, so i can go either way.

I am finding parts for a disc conversion for the 9"


I forgot to mention that I already have 4.56 gears for the front and back, and a Detroit for the 9" I need to decide on what locker for the front axle.