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Fordkid88's Long Slow build log.

fordkid88

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1993 Ford Explorer
Lousy weather, some minor progress made.

It seems that everyday I have off its cold and raining. But I still made some progress. I chemical stripped the valve covers, upper intake, and oil pan. I have to pick up the valve covers and intake, so no pictures right now but here are some of the oil pan.

The start of the stripping, it has three little dents, and 3 little rough spots that I cleaned up.
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High heat engine primer and paint.
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Now its going to sit for a week or so then a little sanding and another coat or two and then sit for another week or so.

Now I did contact the local powder coating company, he quoted me 500-650 to strip and coat the valve covers,oil pan, intakes, and brackets. I just cant do that, if I know can get it done for a 100 bucks or so with some elbow grease, and since this wont see rain or snow, Im not so worried about corrosion.
 



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fordkid88

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Clutch pedal assembly fits and its functional!

I was nervous about this. I had not done any welding in the last 11 years and had only done stick welding then. Im incredibly proud that I can now say that I fabricated something for my truck that has a critical function.

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Now I have the aluminum pedal bracket from a 95-97 ranger and possibly 95-00 explorer, that is not worn out. so if anyone needs one let me know.
 






fordkid88

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H.O. Upper intake. It took a couple hours to wire brush the hell out of it. Part of me wanted to sand out all of the imperfection in the casting but I didnt want to spend the next 30 hours sanding. Im glad I didnt because the texture almost looks like bed liner and it looks really good.
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Now it says your supposed to bake the enamel. My devious little gears in the back off my head were running, and I kept thinking I could get away with baking it in the wife's oven. I think that would have killed her because she already hates the amount of time and money I put into it. Some research landed me with this idea.

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I can tell you that it seems to be really working as I tested an area that was almost machine smooth were the emblem goes by try to scrape it with my nail, nothing happened. So aside from my power bill taking hit im going to bake it for an hour or so a day for a while.
 






fordkid88

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Well I just pulled the trigger on a Summit fuel cell. Tomorrow if the weather is right, Im going to start fabricating the mounts for it. Anyways this is what I ordered.

http://www.summitracing.com/parts/sum-290100/overview/

I have a pretty decent plan for this, and once the frame is done, Im going to move the charcoal canister to the rear and I think Ive got a good idea for the fill neck.
 






fordkid88

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Well I spent yesterday welding and cutting and after a few hours my welds started to look like welds. Ive learned that posture and position make a huge difference, Im adding a stool and table to the required welding kit. I have a portion of the frame done for the fuel cell. Im just waiting on the fuel cell, which apparently there was a delivery attempt while I was out working on the truck and I missed it, go figure.

Hopefully on tuesday I can get it all done.
 






fordkid88

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Its so pretty. Now im kinda of stuck because Menards is out of the square tubing I was using and Homedepot has something similar at but is twice the price. Being the budget minded(cheap *******) person that I am, I just cant do it. In the mean time I have to cut out the plate that holds the spare tire, and finalize my design and location. Now I havent ordered the straps and I havent got a filler neck yet as I can only afford so much so Ill do that at a later time.

PA294690_zps164a267a.jpg
 






fordkid88

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I have to give a great review on tool here. Since I dont have power where I work on the truck, I needed some quality tools that were battery powered that were affordable. I came across the 20v lithium ion battery black and decker matrix. It has an interchangeable head to give you options. As a drill its pretty decent. But I needed a saw to cut out the spare tire carrier as I couldnt easily access the rivets to notch them and nock them out. So I had the option for the drill of a jig saw or a sawzall. 30 bucks for the jig saw and 50 for the sawzall and only found online. Not sure as how much I would use either of these options so I went with the jig saw attachment. Well this little amazing tool easily cut through the tire carrier on both ends in less then 15 mins total. All of this for less than 100 bucks.

Now what this all means is that I now have room for the fuel cell and support frame, and If I can find flexible fuel fuller hose, I can use the stock filler location. Hurray!
 






fordkid88

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PB044692_zps02db0f8f.jpg


2 Bars left to weld in and then finish gusseting the hell of it.
 






fordkid88

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Well its mostly done at this point, I tried something different for some off the gussets to make them look better. A lot of fine tuning and i think it could really work, and a better welder would really help. The wire speed on the harbor freight welder I have is so inconsistent. Ill clean up a lot of the welds, knock off as much splatter as I can and paint it. Im going to try and get it fitted and mounted on Friday and then when I have to money I will order the straps and fully install it and start thinking about what pump and plumbing.

PB064696_zps3cccf903.jpg
 






fordkid88

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Fuel cell progress, I forgot the actual hardware so its not bolted in yet.

Heres some pics with the frame in. Still quite a bit of work left to go, but I dont think it should take that long. I still have to grind out the rivets and knock out the rest of the spare tire carrier, but for the time being with out access to power my battery operated drill and jig saw just might not be enough.

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The boss, I think he was a bit mad I wasnt taking him to the work site.
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fordkid88

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Just got my fuel cell straps in, so hopefully I can finish this project this weekend minus the paint and plumbing, which will be done in the spring.
 






fordkid88

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Well installed the fuel cell, everything looked good and it was solid. So I knew something wasn't right, so I sat and just looked at it for a while trying to figure out what I was missing. Then it hit me, I didnt account for a future suspension drop. I measured the distance of the lowest part of the fuel cell from the ground. 8.5 inches from the ground. Not good for a 4" drop with 2"-3" travel, and since its my day off and I had planned to work on the truck, so it had to rain. Well I had to get something done.
PC044718_zps271ee85b.jpg

I cut up the the fuel cell frame so the cell could be raised. The boss came over to inspect my work, Im not sure he approved of me using the cutoff saw in the apartment hahahha. As long as the GF doesn't find out, especially since its our 3 year anniversary. Time to go clean the house and watch top gear. Hopefully friday I cant get everything welded back up as its supposed to be sunny, but only 10 degrees out.
 












fordkid88

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I prefer the british, it cracks me up.
 






fordkid88

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Well I started working on the truck yesterday at 11:00 and I didnt get home until 8:00. It was 10 degrees out but below 0 with the windchill. I froze my ass off. I got the fuel cell shortened and welded up, brackets cut out of the old seats, cut out the brackets of the new seats, hot rivets knocked out. I just need to drill holes into the brackets that I made and its all good to go.

PC064723_zpsa639b0a2.jpg


Video of the seat wiring working now.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xe6Lpmy1oAA
 






fordkid88

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Messing around with the upholstery.
20131211_183048_zps42fe9af5.jpg

I have some upholstery to burn up so im messing around learning. I think Im going to black and grey.
 






fordkid88

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Well Ive pulled the trigger on some DJM Dream beams, I found some members on car domain that have gotten them to work with a little work. Ive tried to get into direct contact with them on how they did it, but was unable. But between all of the guys I have found that have done this, they didnt seem to have to do to much to get them in.
 












Hotrod Ford

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Why a fuel cell???
You want to lower your front end 3" ???
A 5.0 engine swap!!!!!! Now that's the ticket, can't wait to see and hear your problems and solutions.
Keep the posts coming, looks like you might be enjoying this project. We sure are!
 



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fordkid88

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City, State
Madison Wisconsin
Year, Model & Trim Level
1993 Ford Explorer
Why a fuel cell???
You want to lower your front end 3" ???
A 5.0 engine swap!!!!!! Now that's the ticket, can't wait to see and hear your problems and solutions.
Keep the posts coming, looks like you might be enjoying this project. We sure are!

The fuel cell isn't the route I wanted to go, but I had few little options. As this is going to be a mean little street truck, I wanted to have suspension that handles more than anything. The gas tank has to be removed in order to do a trailing arm setup. Im counting down the days until my buddy comes to town to help me pull the motor and do the suspension swap.
 






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