Brian1's Twin Trail Build (Lift, Gears, TTB Mods, Bumpers, Sliders, Cage & More!) | Page 4 | Ford Explorer - Ford Ranger Forums - Serious Explorations
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Brian1's Twin Trail Build (Lift, Gears, TTB Mods, Bumpers, Sliders, Cage & More!)

Brian1's Twin Trail Build

1991 Ford Explorer 4-Door XL 5-Speed Manual 4x4

Project Background and Goals:

I bought this Explorer at a Police auction in August of 2015. I really didn't know what I was going to do with it when I bought it but I couldn't pass up the great deal I got. I stored it away for a bit while deciding to part it out, build it up or just flip it. In the end I decided to build it into a cheap trail truck and use it to R&D some new ideas I had on how to build an Explorer and develop some new parts.

The goal of the build was to do it cheaply while keeping it low, lightweight, and simple. Another goal was to completely transform the Explorer into a trail machine and debut it at the 20th anniversary forum run in Moab (May 2016) while keeping the entire build a secret.

The build has already been completed and made its successful debut in Moab. I will be adding to this thread as time permits of what I did.

Table of Contents - Modifications

to be filled in as the thread progresses for quick access

1" Body Lift
Rear 8.8 Swap and Build
Rear F150 Hybrid Leaf Springs
Front Daystar 2" Coil Spacer & F250 Shock Tower Conversion
Corbeau Seats Pt1
Corbeau Seats Pt2
Rear Shock Bar Pin Eliminators
Dana 35 TTB Beam Boxing
Hybrid Dana 35 Beams with Dana 44 Outer Conversion
Extended Radius Arms
Dana 35 Diff Build with LockRight Locker
Power Steering Cooler
Cutting the Rocker Panels Off
Rear Bumper Build
Front Fender Cutting
Rock Sliders Pt1
Rock sliders Pt2
Front Winch Bumper Build
Extended Breathers and Fuel Pump Access Panel
Rear Fender Cutting
Cage Building
Fabricated Door Panels/Skins
Doubler Install


IMG_20150820_113129908_HDR.jpg
 



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malohnes

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What a great truck you have. Those Pics in Moab are great, she seems to crawl really well.
Your skills are supurb and thoughtful. Yours and a few other rigs are what I desire my truck to be! Thanks for a great build post!!!
 



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timtimtimajim

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Here are a few things I mentioned but skipped over the photos. Here is a view of my LED pods and bracket in the cowl area, I used a factory hole so I didn't have to drill or modify anything else. Since I have an XL, the panel was empty under the headlight switch and made a good location for my switches. The fuse block is on the driver side fender and has more room for accessories later.

View attachment 90959 View attachment 90960 View attachment 90961 View attachment 90962 View attachment 90963

I like the light brackets. Do you have a picture from the driver seat? I'm curious as to how they look from the inside.

Also, I was wondering if you are planning on making them and selling them (like you do with the diff guard and shackle/shock skid plates which at some point I want to get both) I would be interested in a set at some point if you do plan on making more.
 












Brian1

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1991 XLT
Callsign
KG5BAQ
I like the light brackets. Do you have a picture from the driver seat? I'm curious as to how they look from the inside.

Also, I was wondering if you are planning on making them and selling them (like you do with the diff guard and shackle/shock skid plates which at some point I want to get both) I would be interested in a set at some point if you do plan on making more.

Thanks! I do not have a picture of that but I will get one and add it to this post soon. Yes I do make and sell them, just let me know when!

How many pencils were sharpened crossing the crack? :crazy:

Zero, haha! I was having a good time and it felt fine. Maybe I should have taken the front sway bar off :dunno:
 






2TimingTom

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It's amazing what can be built with the proper tools. Great build here.

How are those seats in terms of long term comfort? Would you consider them in the XLT for extended trips?

pressure washers on radiator fins is OK if you keep your distance. Point blank tends to bend the fins over.
 






Brian1

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How are those seats in terms of long term comfort? Would you consider them in the XLT for extended trips?

I really like them, they are comfortable all day long on the trail. They hold you in place well so you don't bounce around. The only 2 downsides I see are with the high bolsters, they are a little hard to get in and out of the Explorer and you have to use 5-pt harnesses as the factory belts wont work very well to keep you in place due to the high sides and not being able to use the slots for the belts in the seat. I wouldn't put these in my XLT for overlanding and general driving for those 2 reasons, I do have a PRP daily driver seat in my other one that has worked well for it though.
 












timtimtimajim

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I like the way those look. And it doesn't seem like they block too much visibility wise either.

How much would it be for a set?
 












Brian1

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I have a few updates to my project and I will get to a few of them here

1st, I added a NMO antenna mount to my roof so I don't have to use a mag mount antenna anymore for my HAM radio. To do this I picked up a few parts from Amazon and then drilled a hole in my roof and threaded in the antenna base. I was able to access it through the dome light hole in the headliner.

Antenna (1).JPG

Antenna (3).JPG

Antenna (4).JPG


Next, I found a great deal on a brand new Hi-Lift so I picked it up instead of swapping a hi-lift from my other Explorer every time I go out..Since my bumpers and sliders are all made out of tube I built an adapter for my Hi-lift jack to fit the tube and provide more jack stability, it cant slip off the tube now.

Hi-lift adapter.JPG

hi-lift adapter raw (2).JPG


I now have a full spare set of axle shafts and drive shafts that I will carry thanks to my purchase of another parts Explorer and a complete 44TTB I picked up for cheap just to use the outers. I got a neat product that holds the u-joint caps in place for my front drive shaft while it is being stored. No more sticky electrical tape for me. Now I just need to come up with a mounting place for all the shafts.

ujoint cap keeper.jpg
 






Maniak

Moderator-Stock 91-94
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Where'd you find that u-joint holder? That would be much nicer to use.. Electrical tape just gets really gooey over time.

~Mark
 






gmanpaint

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Got a link to that U-joint cap holder? I am using tape and velcro straps on mine, and don't care for it much either.

I was searching out tube adapters for both the hi-lift and bottle jacks, and everything I found was pretty high dollar for what they are. :( Kudo's for making your own.
 






Brian1

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Where'd you find that u-joint holder? That would be much nicer to use.. Electrical tape just gets really gooey over time.

~Mark

Got a link to that U-joint cap holder? I am using tape and velcro straps on mine, and don't care for it much either.

They are made by a small fab company I saw on another board. I bought them in bulk (I have a lot of spare u-joints between 3 off-road vehicles!) and have a few extras to sell for cheaper than you can buy them a few at a time. 2 for $6 + shipping. This particular size fits 1310, 1330, 1350 and D30/35/44 joints which is nice since Explorers use different sizes. They are a little loose on 1310s and would be tight on 1330s so it is a small compromise to fit different sizes.
 












CDW6212R

Hauls the mail.
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Ditto. I was going to ask about those u-joint holders, but figured the antenna install was the bigger topic. Those are great pictures Brian, and I love that custom tube bumper adapter you made. Well done.
 






Brian1

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I spooled on a new 3/8 synthetic winch rope today that I got a good deal on. My steel cable was still like new but the new cable is much lighter and safer.

I also scored a deal on Craigslist for a used Tuffy locking center console. It fits perfect between the seats, now I just need to fab some brackets to mount it. I was going to build one until this came up for $10! I think I will mount my radio to the front of it and get rid of my last minute bracket.

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mynameisaric

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Reading this was a great way to spend my lunch break! Great fab work! Makes me miss my explorer. I really like the small details that you put into everything.
 






Brian1

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Just another small update - I took it out wheeling a few weekends ago. Drove it from my house through town and up into the mountains. As soon as I pulled into the airdown it was boiling over so I guess the problem is still there. While I was away at SEMA I ordered a new HD fan clutch and water pump and when I came back I installed a larger radiator from an automatic, replaced the fan clutch and installed the new water pump. Hopefully that was the end of that!

I still took it wheeling and it did great. Not a hard trail but not easy either so I aimed for the bigger rocks. No photos from the trail, I was just driving and didn't stop.

Another problem came up at the end when I went to air back up and my CO2 regulator froze. I couldn't get my tires aired up much for the highway drive back. I ordered a fixed regulator now and that should solve that problem as well.

More changes are coming and in the works, stay tuned. (hint: not a SAS, yet :laugh: )

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