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Blue's 91 XLT

Hello, this is my new to me 91 xlt. i just got it from a friend who has had it for years and just got a new truck, he needed space in his driveway and i needed a vehicle and it was one of the two vehicles i was thinking about getting, (an explorer or a blazer were on the top of my wish list) and so i bought it for 300$. Of course, with any 22 year old vehicle you buy for 300$, it has lots of little problems, but i still love it anyway.
Almost ran into his new truck trying to turn around in his tiny driveway on the way out after i bought it hehe.

Future plans includetrying to restore it as much as possible, this wont be hard inside, as the interior is almost mint aside from a small tear in the drivers seat leather, but i have to fix the rear shocks eventually, fix the tail lights, and some cosmetic stuff like minor rust and the dissapearing clear coat.
I plan to get larger tires, probably 31's. New or different leafs in back, maybe an f150 leaf pack, and manual hubs for the 4wd, along with some custom cosmetic upgrades like running boards and maybe a brush guard.

This will be a long project for me as money is and will be pretty tight for quite a while. and at first my priority is just getting it to respectable shape mechanically.


dscf7503t.jpg

N7nLlyl.jpg

ex3a.jpg

that is how it sits right now, i hope to improve it as much as i can, it has about 156k miles right now, my goal is to go to at least 350k.

any changes i make i will post on this thread as well

enjoy. thanks!


EDIT: The image site i originally used to host my earlier pics decided to delete all my photos because they started requiring a paid account to host on their site. My normal computer with all the pics on it currently does not have a charger that will work, so once i get a new charger i will repost all of the missing pictures if i can. you can see the basic progression though, just missing some of the pics on the first 2 pages. all the cool stuff is on the 2nd and 3rd pages anyways, but i'll repost the pics as soon as i can. thanks!
 
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ixiz0

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City, State
Fort Smith, Arkansas
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1994 Ford Explorer XLT
Nice truck. Enjoying the progress. I think maybe I should start to document mine. I have a 1994 Explorer. It's that red/burgandy color. Unfortunately it's 2WD. I know people here have ridiculed other people who have lifted their 2WD trucks, but I still think I'm going to lift it 2-3". My truck is all stock, but I just picked up some nice Jeep wheels with some 30x9.5x15 tires mounted on them.
 
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Blue91Ex

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91 XLT
Nice truck. Enjoying the progress. I think maybe I should start to document mine. I have a 1994 Explorer. It's that red/burgandy color. Unfortunately it's 2WD. I know people here have ridiculed other people who have lifted their 2WD trucks, but I still think I'm going to lift it 2-3". My truck is all stock, but I just picked up some nice Jeep wheels with some 30x9.5x15 tires mounted on them.

Thanks! and i dont see any problem with lifting a 2wd truck. They still work pretty well offroad, i only used 4wd like 4 times last inter and most were because i had to drive thru a ditch when a trailer truck got stuck in the middle of the road (dont worry i did offer to help before he told me to go around) and i also have done some mild offroading without needing 4wd. if you use the jeep wheels like what i have the will rub, especially if you have slightly oversized tires. i have stock 235 which is about a 28-19" and before i added the coil springs and shackles they rubbed with teh jeepo rims because the backspacing isnt quite right. your truck is a 2wd so it will sit lower than my stock 4wd anyway, so i wouldnt be surprized if you ran into soem issues. good luck with the build though, if you change the wheels to something else it would work just fine.
 
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Blue91Ex

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Finally have an update. So my driver side rocker was toast, I didn't have the money for a factory shaped panel piece, especially since I would also have to buy the dogleg and still make pieces for the back side. So, there was 14ga plate laying around so this is what i came up with:
QCPZcxr.jpg


This is a work in progress, I don't have much free time to work on it so it is only partially welded on, and I haven't done any of the grinding or body filler work. At least its on and keeping at least some of the salt and crap out of the upper parts of the rocker now.

I also put on my winter rims and tires, the Jeep wheels from last winter, the salt was not kind to them, and the ones pictured are the better of the four.
 
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Blue91Ex

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Also noteworthy today:
More brush guard lights (free, haven't wired them yet)

wG2UtTj.jpg


1FmBjxq.jpg


Also mounted my Hi-Lift jack

VJfFCqB.jpg


Two U bolts (one round one square) hold it to the roof rack and I used a 2" exhaust clamp to hold the jack handle down so it wouldn't move while driving.

edit: Also noteworthy: I repainted the hood, just a few layers of rattle can clearcoat but it looks much better even with the overspray streaks that I couldn't seem to avoid. You can see it in the first pic on this reply/post.
 
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5spdman

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91 Explorer XLT
I really like the look of that grille!! Keep up the good work!
 
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Blue91Ex

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Haha thanks! Everyone seems to like the grill the best out of the mods I've done on the truck! I really like it too but unfortunately the brush guard and stuff kind of block it, but I like the guard and it's nice to have the deer-protection haha. I even had a guy at the tire shop comment on the grill a while back. I like those comments better than "cool jeep" that I get sometimes haha.
[MENTION=127721]5spdman[/MENTION] Thanks for replying! I have been reading the thread on your 91 but haven't commented on it, it looks like you've been making progress on it and its a very interesting read, keep up the good work!
 
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5spdman

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You'll just have to upgrade your bumper sometime to be your deer protection....I'll need some myself when I make the move back to Ohio, but that's a little while off.

And thanks btw! I've been doing as much as I can here and there with what limited amount of money I have, but I think it's pretty good myself...plans for your next project?
 
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Camacorn

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That's kind of funny what you did with your cup holders. Mine came with the newer one you have now, but it was green like my interior, and I used bed liner to make it black and stand out. But recently I took it out and found a 1st gen explorer with this cup holder, but it was gray so I bedlinered it too, I like it because the cups are now side to side, and it has two useful cubbies.

It slides right into the space the old one goes into, without modification. Our consoles already have the screw holes too:

n92B8R5l.jpg
 
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Blue91Ex

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And thanks btw! I've been doing as much as I can here and there with what limited amount of money I have, but I think it's pretty good myself...plans for your next project?

Yea I am sort of in the same boat as you. Unfortunately, my truck is not happy lately. I'm seriously considering buying something else, as much as I love this thing. It needs tons of body work, the engine leaks, trans is still bad, needs tie rod parts, radius arm bushings, rear shocks, the power steering leaks, rear diff leaks, trans pan leaks, brakes need to be rebuilt completely in the rear, and my gas mileage has dropped into the low 14's... It is just getting too hard to maintain (most of the mods I do for fun are also for free, other stuff isn't...)

So, I got a new job, hoping that I'll be able to put about 80-100 dollars a week into savings for a few months and head south somewhere to buy another 1st gen with no rust in good shape. That way I can swap all my stuff over and have spare parts.

On the other hand, I have been wanting something a little different just for change of pace, so I might look into rangers or an expedition, and just keep the explorer for offroading and stuff.. not sure, hard decision either way I go. Maybe if I find one cheap i might even get a 01-03 sport or sport trac or something..

The next project with this ex though is radius arm bushings (already purchased, need to install) and tie rod ends.. need to make sure something important doesn't break in the mean time...

Sorry that was sort of long and probably more than you cared to read but thanks for doing so if you did.

(tl;dr - truck is not happy and I will need another at some point.)
 
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Blue91Ex

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That's kind of funny what you did with your cup holders. Mine came with the newer one you have now, but it was green like my interior, and I used bed liner to make it black and stand out. But recently I took it out and found a 1st gen explorer with this cup holder, but it was gray so I bedlinered it too, I like it because the cups are now side to side, and it has two useful cubbies.

It slides right into the space the old one goes into, without modification. Our consoles already have the screw holes too:


See I had the option of getting either when I went to the junkyard for mine, and I picked this one because each cupholder was a different size, allowing a wider range of drinks in it, mugs, travel mugs, huge gas station sodas, 1L sodas, reg soda bottles, everything fits in one or the other. Works pretty good.
 
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Camacorn

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See I had the option of getting either when I went to the junkyard for mine, and I picked this one because each cupholder was a different size, allowing a wider range of drinks in it, mugs, travel mugs, huge gas station sodas, 1L sodas, reg soda bottles, everything fits in one or the other. Works pretty good.

I've never tried anything larger than a 56oz Double Big Gulp from 7-11, but I can't really imagine why you would need anything bigger, both of the cup holders hold it perfectly fine from my experience :p It all boils down to preference though.
 
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5spdman

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The next project with this ex though is radius arm bushings (already purchased, need to install) and tie rod ends.. need to make sure something important doesn't break in the mean time...

Make sure you soak those studs for the RA's really good...tried once leaving the arms on and pulling the beam forward and that was such a pain in the butt; just easier to remove the entire arm, but i also once had the nut come loose from the beam....had to stick a mig welder in there and blindly weld it enough to hold for me to get the bolt out.
 
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Blue91Ex

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Make sure you soak those studs for the RA's really good...tried once leaving the arms on and pulling the beam forward and that was such a pain in the butt; just easier to remove the entire arm, but i also once had the nut come loose from the beam....had to stick a mig welder in there and blindly weld it enough to hold for me to get the bolt out.

Yea, I had the issue of the RAs restricting travel when I swapped out the coil springs, it was rediculous. I had my uncle stand on the brake rotor to pull the axle down as much as possible, stuff a wood blcok in between the frame and RA, and use a huge crowbar to get the coils in and out.

When I replace the RA bushings I will probably cut the rivets to the cross-member and just take off the rear bushings. Then use bolts to re-attach the crossmember to the frame.
 
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5spdman

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That's another option....makes it easier to install drop brackets later too! :D
 
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mr cribb

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I don't sniff around the registry much, and I noticed from my last truck I had in here it seems as though people don't read the registry or they don't comment as much.

Nice build though, I like the roof rack for sure.

The south is definitely easier on the rust. I would go for a manual transmission if you can find one. It is more fun to drive with one in my opinion.

The cup holder you have is much more 5 speed friendly. I need to find another one for my current truck.
 
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Blue91Ex

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I don't sniff around the registry much, and I noticed from my last truck I had in here it seems as though people don't read the registry or they don't comment as much.

Nice build though, I like the roof rack for sure.

The south is definitely easier on the rust. I would go for a manual transmission if you can find one. It is more fun to drive with one in my opinion.

The cup holder you have is much more 5 speed friendly. I need to find another one for my current truck.

I have also noticed people don't seem to check out the registry much unless someone's thread is on the front page or something. I don't even look at it all that much myself. (I lurk the offroad fab sub-forum mostly)

Thanks! The roof rack and grill get the most love from people haha. I really like them and the roof rack has come in handy a lot, from storing the spare and hi-lift to holding the lights to carrying brush leftover from trimming up a driveway. By winter I should also have a flat shorthandle shovel mounted on the driver side as well.

I am still contemplating my next vehicle. No matter what I'm keeping this truck, but it probably won't get much if any road use. Right now i have a few vehicles in mind for the next rig.

Right now the list is
1st gen explorer 5spd
late 90s expedition
90-97 ranger shortbox
late 90s f150
1st gen sport trac
90s toyota landcruiser
early 90s geotracker or suzuki sidekick

no matter what I get it's going to become a project. I want to keep it relevant to the forum so the explorer/sport trac/ranger is kind of a big hope, but at the same time something a little different might be fun, and the expedition/f150 is mostly just the utility of it, sometimes I just really want that extra space.

sorry that post was kind of rant-y might edit later with pics to make it more interesting haha.
 
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mr cribb

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Once you drive a standard first gen explorer, I almost bet you won't look at anything else.

I started the explorer life with a 00 Eddie Bauer model with the crappy SOHC v6 auto.
I liked the square body style and found a 5 speed and never looked back.
 
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Blue91Ex

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Once you drive a standard first gen explorer, I almost bet you won't look at anything else.

I started the explorer life with a 00 Eddie Bauer model with the crappy SOHC v6 auto.
I liked the square body style and found a 5 speed and never looked back.

Yea I'm not saying i don't move my explorer even with the auto, its just getting to where I can't afford to constantly fix one thing after another, or at least to the point where it isn't economically worth it to.

I have never driven a standard (well not really, unless tractors and stuff count) but it deffinitly looks way more fun.

I just can't help but think if I'm going to get another vehicle, why not get something different. I'l still have my explorer for offroading, and I doubt I will get as attached to whatever new truck I buy, so i can just sell that one whenever I feel like getting something else.

But, if I get another 1st gen, I will have spare parts if needed. I will already know how to work on a lot of it. And I will have a new (to me) explorer to work on and make new modifications to, or i could just slap on all my current stuff to it. But with that, I will run into that lack of variety..

So yea its not going to be an easy decision any way I go about it.

I would be tempted to get a v8 98-01 mountaineer because i like the front end and 302 but that ifs... ew. haha
 
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mr cribb

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At least you have some knowledge of a standard transmission, and it isn't all that hard to master. I learned almost 20 years ago, and I love it still.
 
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