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Best year 5.0 Explorer to build?

nova801428

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86 Ford Ranger
Alright looks like I'm going to be buying a 5.0 Explorer for my trail rig build. After having a baby my Ranger is too small for 3 of us. I need something with more room. I want to stay in the RBV family and I love the fact you can buy an Explorer with a 5.0 v8 so that's what I'm going with.

I'm currently looking at a 2000 Explorer and it got me thinking there are some years better than others to build a trail rig. For instance the 96-97 have vss on the tcase and 97+ have vss on the rear axle? If I go with a 2000 Explorer my full width 8.8 should work then. But if I go with a tcase mounted vss then I dont think I'll be able to use my doubler and np205?

Also PATS had me thinking I should stay with earlier models.

I'll probably be swapping all my parts from the Ranger to the Explorer except the 5.0 and zf5. Ranger has dana 44 sas and 8.8 with 5.13s on 37s. Also have doubler and np205.

What is the best year Explorer to build?

Thanks!
 
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410Fortune

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I like them all
I like the 98-2001 with the returnless fuel, there are ways around the speed sensor, but not all of them are plug and play
The 96-97.5 is good too, but the manifolds are weak and the 4r70w is not as upgraded as the 98+ models
I vote run what ya brung! Find the lowest mile 96-01 5.0 you can get and just work with that.......
 
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boominXplorer

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I run a 97.5 explorer harness with a 98 4r70w in my Ranger, I feel its the best combo to mod with easily. Of course they would all work well.
 
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CDW6212R

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I'd go with a 98-01 Explorer as the most refined of the wiring and systems. The 97.5 is the best for swapping into non-Fords. You can swap almost everything between the 96-01's, other than minor things. If you won't need to do away with the stock 8.8 for wheeling, then the rear VSS is a good system. For street use and the IFS, I prefer the 98-01's, they do not have the frame rubbing system of the 96/97 torsion bar keys. The 98-01's have a replaceable urethane block that shouldn't wear out. I used to say never wears out, but my 98 Limited from two previous owners, did wear them out(down to nothing). I bought three new ones for about $45 each, one for a spare.
 
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nova801428

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Thanks guys! I guess in the end it probably doesn't matter what I choose to run. I'm going to look at a 2000 Explorer this weekend. It has a bad transmission but its clean and has fairly low mileage for a decent price. Not sure if I want to rebuild this trans or swap it with a junkyard replacement.

Does a Sterling 10.25/10.5 have vss?
 
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BruceExploder

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1999 Eddie Bauer
Thanks guys! I guess in the end it probably doesn't matter what I choose to run. I'm going to look at a 2000 Explorer this weekend. It has a bad transmission but its clean and has fairly low mileage for a decent price. Not sure if I want to rebuild this trans or swap it with a junkyard replacement.

Does a Sterling 10.25/10.5 have vss?


Least you should be able to get it cheap then
 
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410Fortune

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in my 88 BII I run a 97.5 mountaineer pcm with a 2000 model and rebuilt 4r70w converted to the AA adapter and 1354m t case
If I had to do it over again I would use a returnless style pump and fuel rail, eliminating one fuel line and keeping the gas much cooler. Also I would skip the AA adapter and run a NP205/1356 doubler
or Atlas t case...

I am thinking of buiding a sport trac with a 331/m5od-r2/NP205 twin stick :)
 
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Wideeight

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Thanks guys! I guess in the end it probably doesn't matter what I choose to run. I'm going to look at a 2000 Explorer this weekend. It has a bad transmission but its clean and has fairly low mileage for a decent price. Not sure if I want to rebuild this trans or swap it with a junkyard replacement.

Does a Sterling 10.25/10.5 have vss?
 
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nova801428

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Picked up a 2000 Explorer Limted with a 5.0. I gotta say i didnt think i would like it but I love it. Im planning on driving it for awhile so i can collect parts.
 
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Hacra

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1997 5.0 Eddie Bauer
Thanks guys! I guess in the end it probably doesn't matter what I choose to run. I'm going to look at a 2000 Explorer this weekend. It has a bad transmission but its clean and has fairly low mileage for a decent price. Not sure if I want to rebuild this trans or swap it with a junkyard replacement.

Does a Sterling 10.25/10.5 have vss?

https://www.fullsizebronco.com/forum/21-noobie-bronco-tech-questions-flame-free-zone/198953-vss-10-25-sterling.html apparently it's possible to have one in it.
 
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nova801428

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Hacra

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It's going to be strong axle. Are you going to change bolt pattern to 8 lug aswel to front?

Have a glance at this, might be useful.
 
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nova801428

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It's going to be strong axle. Are you going to change bolt pattern to 8 lug aswel to front?

Have a glance at this, might be useful.

Thanks!

The front will most likely be an 05+ Super duty Dana 60. They are cheap and plentiful. I may go with a 99-04 Super duty D60 but they do have some smaller parts than the 05+. If i can find another obs Ford Dana 60 for cheap I'd go that route.

Im definitely going 1 tons though. For now I'm going to drive it for a year to collect parts and so I can finish my full size Bronco project that actually has 05+ Super Duty axles
 
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