My 96 XLT 4wd Xplorer "Roxanne" | Page 2 | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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My 96 XLT 4wd Xplorer "Roxanne"

Hey guys I have been poking around here on the site for a little while now and I figured it was time to start my registry here. I have a 96 XLT 4wd xplorer with 185,000 miles on the clock. Everything on it is stock except for the paint which is a nightmare. The old adage you get what you pay for definitely rings true with my paint. I let a guy I know do it and the color is horrible number 1, but the job he done was even crappier. The body still aint straight and the paint is still tacky a month and a half later. Sigh, total waste of 300 bucks. Anyway, I have a lot in store for "Roxanne" so stay tuned and I will post pics asap. P.S. Please dont hate on the paint cause its pretty horrible. Build ideas, suggestions, contructive criticism, etc... would be greatly appreciated.

Current: Stock 96 xlt 4wd xploder

Future Mods:
ford oem willow green paint
2 inch warrior shackles and tt
3 inch body lift
33x12.50x15 bfg km2
15 inch soft 8's
fabricated front and rear bumpers
yakima roof rack
hella lights
manual t-case conversion
manual hubs
lockers front and rear
rock sliders

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No problem asking questions, You don't have auto hubs you have what is called a vacuum disconnect axle, so when that when not in 4wd the passenger since disconnects part of the axle, the wheel hubs are a direct link to the axle so there is no fault there unless the CV joint breaks. And you can put a manual case in but then with that axle setup you will have to put a toggle switch in your truck to control it or swap in a live passenger side axle from a 97+ex or 96 5.0 explorer or direct link it yourself or do what I did and just unplug the controller wire that goes to the axle under the hood then the axle is always "live" and normally don't have to worry about it because it's always connected.

Thanks for the info Glen4x4. That clears up a lot. :thumbsup:

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my suggestion for the paint aspect would be if it's going to be an off roading truck, i would just clear it and be done with it because if you're in the woods, you're going to scrape branches and hit trees and kick up rocks and ruin your good paint job. A far as everything else, i would do the TT/shackles with 31s. From there i would go with a rear diff change, depending on what you have, 373 LS or 4.10 open. The LS is capable but from what a lot of people say on here can be broken if you try hard enough, a quick alternative is a lunch box locker like an Aussie locker, many members on here have had much success with those.

Other then that, there aren't many ways you can go wrong with these trucks, they're pretty good as long as you do the regular maintenance.


the gearing depends a lot on personal taste. my 97 open 4.10's seems to be more capable where i go than my 94 with ls 3.73's did. the only time i miss my ls is if i happen to get a rear tire off the ground, which doesnt happen a lot with only 3" of lift and 31's.

Yeah I agree that the gearing just depends on the person and what the main use of the vehicle is. For starters though, I want to get the warrior shackles, do the tt, and get some 31x10.50's and then go from there. Gotta sell some **** so I can get started, haha :D.

Slight change of plans. I let my father in law who is a professional paint and body man take a look at the ole girl. After much examination and thorough discussion I have decided to look for an explorer in good shape that just needs a transmission and purchase that and take the transmission out of Roxanne and part the rest of her out. Then build the new explorer :D.