Custom fab rock sliders | Ford Explorer - Ford Ranger Forums - Serious Explorations

  • Register Today It's free! This box and some ads will disappear once registered!

  • Holiday Special! - 2 for 1 Elite Explorer sale!

    Right now you can purchase an Elite Explorer membership for $20 and receive a two year membership! If you have an existing Elite membership contact me by PM and I will upgrade your account manually.

    Click Here to start your membership and get rid of the ads!

Custom fab rock sliders

trueblue02

Member
Joined
April 27, 2015
Messages
31
Reaction score
2
Year, Model & Trim Level
1991 exploder
Hello Explorerforum!

Ive been learning to weld and wanted to put my skills to use on a project. I'm building a set of rock sliders as right now i just have the plastic cladding and the pinch welds already got damaged. I've decided to use 1-3/4" diameter .120" wall tubing for the sliders, and 3×2" angle iron for the frame attachments. These should be strong enough to support the vehicle, but not stronger than the frame itself. I'm not a hardcore rock crawler and would prefer these bend or break rather than twisting the frame of the truck.

First step is assembling the supplies and prepping the "patient":

IMG_20200203_141902.jpg


All the tubing for the build, ended up needing 40' of tube and 4' of angle iron. I went with hot rolled ERW tube due to steel prices these days, the total bill ended up at $194. Cold rolled or DOM is the stronger option for the same weight, but would have been 3x the price.

IMG_20200203_142105.jpg


Also picked up a new set of gloves and a couple pounds of TIG rod.

IMG_20200203_141750.jpg


Our "patient". I picked up this explorer almost a year ago for $1500 and it's been a bit of a basket case but I've sorted out most of the issues. Also managed to find time to put in skyjacker springs, lift shackles, bilsteins and BFGs. After getting everything together I only had time to fit a few supports and mock up the tube placement.

IMG_20200203_160858.jpg


This needs to come up higher but a clamp was in the way. Should have it mocked better later. More to come...
 




trueblue02

Member
Joined
April 27, 2015
Messages
31
Reaction score
2
Year, Model & Trim Level
1991 exploder
Next steps!

After getting the mockups and measurements done, I was able to start cutting and fitting pieces. I used 3x2 angle iron for the frame pads, and decided on 4 supports as that fit best in the frame. Mocking up the supports with the tubes I was able to get the fit much tighter.

IMG_20200204_163125.jpg

Looking good! That gap closes up when the tube is clamped a little better. After the mock up it's back to the bench to tack weld the supports and then clean them up.

IMG_20200205_161647.jpg


Lots of tubes! Getting these done allowed me to start bending the outer slider rails and fitting those as well. They should extend about 6" from the pinch welds on the body, but stay within the width of the wheels.
IMG_20200206_135415.jpg


This is before coping the outer piece

IMG_20200204_163125.jpg


IMG_20200204_163137.jpg
 




BKennedy

Elite Loser
Staff member
Moderator
Elite Explorer
Joined
November 29, 2000
Messages
8,433
Reaction score
1,758
Location
USA
City, State
San Diego, PRofK
Year, Model & Trim Level
1994 XLT
If you flatten the pinch weld running down the body you can move those sliders up quite a bit to help with ground clearance. Mine are less than 1" below the body. The frame is going to flex no matter what you do. My sliders flex up and contact the bottom of the body. It doesn't cause any damage because its flat with the pinch weld flattened out and I have square tube sliders. I also don't recommend using that angle for plates because its below the frame. The frame makes a nice slider and rocks will hang up on those angle pieces. Mine has pieces of 3/16" plate that the supports are welded onto. My supports are also welded to the frame higher to minimize them taking hits from rocks. Above the park brake cable. They have been on there for over ten years with lots of impacts.

You will also want to make sure they stick out enough to keep the body off the rocks, and to stand on. Makes it easy for loading stuff on the roof, and when you are in extreme off-camber situations someone can jump up on the slider.
 




Top