DBR/Giant 64 Ranger to Explorer | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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DBR/Giant 64 Ranger to Explorer

Here is a picture of my RBV pre 2011:

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In 2010 I had an unfortunate incident in my long travel 2000 Ranger 4x4. Moving through a signalized intersection, I had someone make an illegal left hand turn. They hit me right behind the driver's side front axle. My Ranger did not fair so well:

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It took over 2.5 years to work out a reasonable settlement on the truck. While the insurance was haggling over the value of my truck, I started driving a 3rd Gen 4Runner. This was the first SUV that I have owned. It has been a great vehicle, and it made me realize that an Explorer might have potential.

The nice thing about the Explorer is that many of the parts that I was able to salvage off of the Ranger will transfer over. Here is a summary of what I have to work with:

Dixon Brother's Racing 4X4 long travel kit complete with axles
Dixon Brother's Racing heim steering setup
8" coil over shocks
Giant 64" leaf spring kit (capable of 20" of rear travel)
Ford 9.75 axle out of a 2003 Harley Davidson F150 - re-drilled to 5 on 4.5
4:88 gears (front and rear)
16" triple bypass shocks
Pair of Mastercraft Safety Baja RS suspension seats

I am starting this project with a 1999 Explorer XLT 4X4 with the 4.0 SOHC

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...Welcome here and looking forward to watching your build..:biggthump
 






The first step was to strip 80% of the interior and move the salvage to the fabricator's property:

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Removed the rear axle and springs off of the Ranger:

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Removed the front bumper and fenders:

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Removed the front suspension and mounted the Dixon Brother's Racing long travel kit:

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Last shot with stock wheels and tires - notice the front end droop travel compared to the stock rear end setup:

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Trimmed the rear quarter panel, mocked up the Giant 64 spring kit and Ford 9.75 axle, mounted up 35" tires for the first time:

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Next we mocked up the spring pack (springs and shock will be mounted on the outside of the frame)

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Next we started to estimate how much trimming would be required to clear the 35" tires.

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First cut:

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looks ill man! kudos...any way you can fab those fenders fromthe Ranger onto the X?
 






looks ill man! kudos...any way you can fab those fenders fromthe Ranger onto the X?

No need. There is aftermarket fender and bedside support for the Explorer. You could modify a Ranger fender to work, but it would likely be more work and expense than just running something that is already designed for the truck.

For this Explorer, I will be using a set of Fiberwerx 7" Explorer bedsides and a set of Baker (Glassworks) flat top front fenders.
 






Trimmed out the stock wheel tubs:

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Adding gussets to the upper a-arm mounts and adding provisions to run a bypass shock with the coilover on the Dixon Brother's LT kit:

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Rear axle at bump. The frame is notched roughly 2".

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Cage underway:

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Test fitting the dash:

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...:shifty_ey...I spy some other cages in the background..Do you have your own shop?
 






No, I wish that I was an accomplished fabricator and had all of the tools of the trade. I am working with a fabricator on this one, because I don't have the time right now to garage fab this truck. I would rather it get done and get used than have it sit unfinished in my garage for years on end.
 















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Looking awesome so far! Keeping back seats?
 






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