BMXking's Axle Swap 1st gen. Coils/Radius Arms!!! | Page 39 | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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BMXking's Axle Swap 1st gen. Coils/Radius Arms!!!

Well, I finally decided to start a thread on it. For those of you who don't know, I will be doing a full-width swap. High-Pinion Dana 44 front and Ford 9" rear. I am still looking for the HP D44, but I picked up the 9" Monday. I have never really done a lot of work on axles, so this will definitely be a long process, but I have already done a lot of research about this(and am still learning a TON). I plan on doing as much of it myself as I possibly can, but will have a shop do the regear for me.

-1977 F-150 HP D44 Full-Width $200 - Moved Forward ~1.5”
-Myers Machine Coil Seats $40 shipped
-6* Pro Comp Pinion shims under coil buckets (to fix coil angle) $18
-CAGE Offroad 5.5” Coil Springs $150 shipped
-Coil Buckets Spaced Out 2.5" (3/16" x 2.5" x 6.5") $FREE
-Bronco Graveyard 78-79 Coil Spring Tower, Pair $90.80 shipped
-F250 Shock Towers $28 shipped
-Stock Axle Shafts(for now) $FREE
-Warn Premium Hubs $72
-Extended, Plated, Heimed, Wristed 1978-1979 Bronco/F-150 Radius Arms $222 shipped
-CAGE Radius Arm Mounts $FREE w/ R/A's
-Adjustable Superlift (p/n 1080) track bar (76-79 Ford f150/78-79 Bronco) w/ Energy Suspension poly bushings $125
-Skyjacker Stainless Steel Braided Lines for lifted D35 TTB's $90
-Bronco Graveyard 66-75 Early Bronco Adj. Bracket $45
-New F150 tie-rods & stock Explorer drag link (w/ red poly dust boots) $121
-Stock pitman arm $FREE
-Raybestos Professional Grade $19.95 shipped
-Powerslot slotted rotors $120
-Rebuilt Calipers $26
-Completely rebuilt (seals/bearings/ball joints/u-joints/etc.) $260.23
-Energy Suspension Red 7* C-Bushings $21
-Stock Explorer D-shaft w/ 1310 D44 pinion yoke for stock Explorer u-joints $FREE
-Rancho RS5000 shocks $20
-Bronco Graveyard Upper Coil Spring Retainers $22
-Rancho RS5000 steering stabilizer w/ custom bracket $25

-1983 Ford 9" $85
-Rubicon Express Anti-Wrap perches welded SOA $35
-Wild Horses Weld-On Shock Mounts $15
-Stock Springs w/ AAL and red rear poly bushings $10
-Stock Axle shafts w/ new bearings, seals, collars, etc $140
-94-99 Dodge Ram 1500 front rotors $58 shipped
-'76 Cadallic Eldorado Calipers w/ e-brake $155 w/ core calipers
-'78 F150 Extended Stainless Steel Braided Rear Brake Hose $45.34
-Custom Bent Brake Lines (w/ 3/8" ends) $8
-'79 Caddy Eldorado Brake Line end box thing $FREE
-7/16" Banjo Bolt for '76 calipers $5
-Bendix Brake Pads $35
-Speedway Motors GM Large Caliper bracket (7" mounting points) $40 2-day shipped
-Cut off mounting points from Ford 9" drums to use as spacers for the disc conversion (no longer a backing plate behind the shaft) $FREE
-Third Member from eBay (4.88s, mini spool) $150
-BC Broncos Disc Brake Conversion Wheel Studs $15
-Wild Horses Super Duty U-bolt Kits $60
-Extended/balanced rear driveshaft w/ stock 1310 to match the 1310 on the axle $123.63
-Skyjacker Nitro 8000 shocks for 2" lift Explorer $FREE
-Copper Third Member Washers $12.24

-37x12.50-16 Maxxis Creepy Crawlers $400.00

WHEELS (5 on 5.5)
-16x8 Black Rock Crawlers $293

Grade 8 Hardware: $200

Tig Welding: $200

Parts Sold
-Stock Third Member w/ 3.50s and open diff -$50
-Lower Coil Mounts -$25
-Stock Radius Arms -$25
-31x10.50 Dunlop Mud Rovers, 15x8 black rock crawler wheels, Skyjacker 2” lift coils, drop-in K&N, front Skyjacker Nitro 8k shocks, Dual CB Antenna Mounts/Coax, and 235/75r15 spare tire, APC Ultra-White Bulbs, Radius Arm Bushings, Sway Bar Bushings -$415
-Ford 8.8 - 3.27 gears, 31 spline, stock limited slip, drum brakes, SUA, great condition. -$70
-Front Axle Shafts -$60

TOTAL: $3156.24

Future Upgrades:
Dana 44 -
-30 spline ARB
-Yukon 4.88s
-Warn Chromoly Inner and Outer Shafts, Moser Max 44 shafts, or Superior Axles
-Dedenbear flat top knuckles
-Blue Torch Fabworks Hi-Steer Arms
-Rancho RS9000X adj. shocks
-Late 70s T-Bird calipers (1/4" bigger piston, and still use Bronco pads :thumbsup: )

Ford 9" -
-New Strange Nodular Iron Case w/ 3.250 carrier bearing (STR-N1906) $359 Summit Racing
-Moser Spool and Axle Package Number 1 (ASP1) - 35 spline full steel spool for 3.250 case, 35 spline custom alloy axles, Axle bearings, 5 on 5.5, 1/2" studs $590 Moser Engineering
-Yukon 4.88s (F9-486) $139 PORC
-Daytona Pinion Support 3.250 case (STR-N1914) $115 Summit Racing
-R&P Master Install Kit for 9" Ford-3.250 Case, Daytona Pinion Support(R9FDD) $100 Moser Engineering
-Pinion Yoke 1310 - 28spline pinion (may upgrade to 1350 if I get a new t-case) (PY210) $90 Moser Engineering
-Axle Breather Vent $12 Bronco Graveyard
-Axle Truss
-Rancho RS9000X adj. shocks
-94-02 Dodge Ram 4x4 Powerslot Slotted Rotors

Now on to the pics!


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The trac-bar has to be steep to be parallel with his draglink. If not he would get bump steer like a biatch and probably some death wobble too ;).

But yes, I agree with moving the steering. All that fab work and you still have the stock weak ass inverted "y" linkage thats 1" OD under the knuckles?

Looks good otherwise.

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034x4 said:
The trac-bar has to be steep to be parallel with his draglink. If not he would get bump steer like a biatch and probably some death wobble too ;).

But yes, I agree with moving the steering. All that fab work and you still have the stock weak ass inverted "y" linkage thats 1" OD under the knuckles?

Looks good otherwise.

True, the drag link and tracbar need to be parallel to prevent bump steer (death wobble is an entirely different issue mostly related to misaligned caster and sloppy links) but the draglink can be made less steep by a drop pitman arm, high steer knuckles or just by simply moving the Tie Rod over knuckle. I am only speaking from experience on this. My Trac bar is really steep and I have no means to adjust it other than cutting my mount off and building another upper mount.

I like the steering system other than that. I agree that I would probably build some better links, but the chevy TRE system was a good choice otherwise.


How did you mount the lower bushing on your trackbar? What kind of bushing are you using? I looked through the thread, but I can't tell. Did you use the stock style stud or is it a bolt? Did you use a poly bushing? Stock EB?


I don't have any bump steer right now since it's parallel. The next upgrade is definitely going to be the steering. I would relocate it above the knuckle for the time being (planning on some DOM tubing with either heims or Chevy TREs), but I would need to ream out the knuckles. Anyone know where to get the reamer and what size I'd need (to use the F150 TREs that I have now)?

That trac bar mount is not going anywhere. It is much stronger than you'd expect. Also, it's a bad angle of the mount. I angled that piece of steel so that I would match the shape of the frame. The other side goes all the way to the edge of the mount. There is no flex what so ever in it...most likely because I have the trac bar in the highest hole.

The lower trac bar mount has a bolt through it. Mine didn't have a stud, it came with the bolt, castle nut, and cotter pin. I'm using the stock f150 trac bar. I've got new poly bushings in my entire front and rear suspension.

Long story short, the little brake box thing that has the banjo bolt going through it (has the brake line in one end, and sends brake fluid through the banjo bolt to the caliper) had a slight leak that I didn't notice yesterday. It was fine when I drove it to school yesterday. When I got home yesterday, I adjusted the pushrod in the back of the master cylinder to give more pressure for the new rear discs. This magnified teh problem, and ended up giving the rear more pressure/fluid. It had enough fluid to push the piston out, but then shot the fluid out and couldn't pull the piston back in. When I was driving the truck last night, (luckily I was on the road in front of my house where there are a lot of office parks to pull into), the back driver side caliper grabbed and pulled me to a stop (luckily it was a slow grab, so nothing bad happened). I got out and looked and saw the fluid and knew right off the bat what I needed to do. I can't buy a new one (no auto parts store carries it, and I can't find it from the dealer) so I when to pull a part today after work, pulled two off(just in case I needed an extra) and just bolted it back up. I'm getting ready to bleed the brakes again, and I'm going to thoroughly check for any leaks from it (all the others are fine). If there aren't any leaks, there is a 99% chance that the problem is gone! :thumbsup:

BTW, since I now know that this one has been grabbing a little (you can see creepy crawler tire tracks everywhere I drove in that office park and in the driveway, and they all show the driver's rear tire dragging) it explains why when I'd shift gears/let off the accelerator, it'd pull to the driver side a bit. It was most likely trying to pivot around the driver side rear brake. So if there are no leaks, both of these problems will be fixed! :)

OK, I got that new "brake block thingy" on and it has no leaks. We bled the brakes and they're definitely nicer than before. I fine tuned the pushrod in the brake booster and it stops pretty darn well for 37s! As I suspected, the truck no longer pulls to the oncoming traffic. I took a couple of people for a ride in it (both have 4"+ drops) and nobody believes me that the truck rides smooth as can be (up til about 60 or so) until they ride in it. Gonna do some more fine tuning tomorrow to get it as nice as I can for school on Monday (my last day other than graduation). I'll try to get some pics of the suspension flexed out a little bit later this weekend/next week.

Well, I couldn't wait any longer. I drove it off in the ditch down the road from the house. It wasn't much, so they aren't that great of flex shots, but atleast these prove that the truck goes places other than the driveway! Sorry for the terrible pics...I guess this means I've got to flex it out again tomorrow!

BTW, another thing that would really surprise you is how nicely this thing handles. It corners pretty damn well for 8" lift. Other than the tiny bugs I've got to work out tomorrow, I think this is perfect. I'd still like to upgrade the steering to hi-steer with DOM and heim steering, regear and ARB the front w/ chromoly shafts, and also 35 spline and ARB the rear, but other than those things (all really just to make it REALLY nice offroad) it's great. If it was a street queen, it could stay as is and be a great head turner.


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lookin good bryan me likey

Looks good Bryan, I'm just waiting for the drive-shafts to get back and mine will be done. Just finished the bed cage at about 1:00 a.m this morning, and then it's off for the emissions test and tag office.

looks really good

Thanks guys. I just got back from trying to flex out the suspesion. There is a big mound of dirt that I tried before the SAS and could only make it up halfway before the suspension maxed out. Now, I just drove up the entire thing and can't flex it out all the way :cool: Plus, I didn't even pull the r/a wrist pin yet. The brake lines have a couple inches of flex left in it, but if I was able to max out the suspension, I would definitely rip em out. I'm gonna look around and see if there is a shop that can build me some extremely long SS brake lines (currently I have 6" lifted Ford Explorer Skyjacker lines). In the rear, I doubt I could ever truely max it out (well, atleast not with the current suspension). They are 9" lifted 78 F150 SS skyjacker lines. :cool:

I'll post the pics up later. I'm gonna do some tweaking on the front end, and then clean it all up for school tomorrow.

EDIT: By the way Kirby, when I flexed it out, the differential still has a few more inches til I even need to worry about trimming the engine x-member. I'll probably need to trim it once I get new brake lines and pull the wrist pin, but it won't be too bad.

That is cool. Looks nice. The FW worked to your advantage on the crossmember. On the brake lines, you might look into what I did. I really liked how the stock F150 lines were run. Made a ton more sense to me for the lines to come down in the middle of the axle, then just have another set of flex lines at the wheels, so I got some EB outer lines. Then I looked and looked for some good inner lines, but I finally ended up using Explorer rear lines in the middle. Then I plumbed all my hard lines down the tubes. Now my brake lines have a huge amount of travel and barely move when it is flexed because the inner area of the diff doesn't really move when it is flexed out.

Good thinking. Thanks a TON for saying that now....I just threw the stock lines in the trash! I'll go get them because that sounds like it'll solve all my problems. Can you post some more pics and some details on it. What did you do for getting it to only having two lines from the master cylinder and both axles having T's, instead of individual for both fronts and then one for the rear? Or did you completely bypass all the ABS and just run two from the master cylinder?

Up until this morning, I had my trac bar in the second to top hole. When I first put in the trac bar, I actually had it backwards (the bend was going back to the bucket instead of the mount) That's when I took the pics of the truck, so it was parallel. After those pics, I turned it around and since there is a factory bend at the bottom of the trac bar, it took my parallel-ness away :confused: On top of that, my axle sat to the passenger side about an inch and a half. This morning, I pulled out the trac bar and moved it to the upper hole in my trac bar mount. This not only fixed my angle, but it also pulled the axle back to the driver side. It still needs to move about 3/4" to the driver side, but that can't be fixed til I get an adjustable trac bar for a full size truck (still got the EB trac bar if anyone is interested).

Ok, well here are the pics I promised.


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Oh and also, when I moved my trac bar up to the top hole, I ended up having to trim the engine x-member. It didn't rub when I flexed it out again today, but I'll keep an eye on it and trim more as needed.


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last ones


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Let's see pics of you flexed out on the J**p. :D I'm diggin' it.

I would have to nominate for truck of the month, looks awsome.

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awesome looking....what you need is a bigger hill to flex on.....