My 96 XLT with lift/tires | Ford Explorer - Ford Ranger Forums - Serious Explorations

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My 96 XLT with lift/tires

EXPLDER

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va
Year, Model & Trim Level
91 xlt 4 sale, NEW 96 XLT
Hey all,

I don't frequent here too often. I did some work to my Exploder and thought I'd share some experiences.

First off, lift: For some reason my truck seemed to be a tad lower then most. I added a leaf to the rear (Pro Comp) and then bought some lift shackles. BTW, GO CHECK YOUR SHACKLES NOW!! Mine were a few weeks away from collapsing!!! They literally rusted all the way through in MOST spots. I got them from eBay and they appear to be Warrior copies. They were CHEAP and the quality is ok, definitely not going to break, but they come with a slight warp from welding, and the powder coat is so so. They don't clean the surface well enough, so the powder coat sux, but they did fit after a little hammer persuasion. I also drilled extra holes in the shackles to make them adjustable. I just added one hole below the top and one above the bottom and either side of the shackle and of coarse both shackles (8 holes for those counting). The shackle was for a 1.5" lift, I only needed a 1" lift (I wanted a level truck, and the full 1.5" lift would make the rear too high as I did not want to over do the torsion tightening). So I used the hole I drilled on the upper portion of the shackle 1" below the upper hole. The shackle swings fine on the frame without the center webbing hitting. BTW, 1" of up or down on the shackle equals roughly 1/2" of lift. The extra 1" the rear shackle DOES NOT STICK DOWN looks a lot better. Very close to stock as the shackle can't been seen very well hidden by the bumper. I think the Warriors hang down too far and look ugly, but when you want 1.5" of lift from a shackle you have no choice. The front I just tightened the torsion bars till it was level. Again, about 2.5~3" of lift total but my truck was lower then most I've measured. Truck sits 3.5~4" taller compaired to a stock truck. I still have roughly 2~3" of sag or drop travel in the front. I then topped it off with Pro Comp shocks.

Wheels and tires: Interco/Super Swamper TRUXUS radial tires, sized 31X11.5X15 on Pro Comp 15X10 classic look with simulated bead lock lips. The wheel size really does the tires justice, I think 8"wide wouldn't look as good. The tires sidewalls and tread still are wider then the rims, so the rims are protected. BTW, I realize the majority in here like TALL and Narrow so just go ahead and save the 8" wheel comments, I like the 10's and Interco recommends them for this size. I'd really recommend an inch less of backspacing, but it’s HARD to find a 15X10 with fewer backspacing.

Umm no, they aren't a direct bolt on and go. They rub badly. So a little trimming of the front wheel well front air damn and the lower tubberware and a bit of trimming on the actual fender and were good to go. I did have to rivet the inner fender plastic back a bit, as the naturally want to get in the way, no biggy.

Well here’s what it looks like:




http://img512.imageshack.us/my.php?image=070907192000iw9.jpg

As for tire review:

Well, after reading reviews my impression was that these would not be loud and I was mistaken!! There not Bogger loud, but they by no means are quiet. Anyone beside you on the highway or even interstate gets annoyed fairly quickly and either passes or drops back LOL.

Traction:
Street traction is AWSOME. The truck being a lot stiffer now due to the lift it handles very VERY WELL. Wet road traction isn't too bad either, but standing water LOOK OUT. I'm sure it’s just a matter of the large foot print these leave, but standing water is scary and the truck does what it wants to. Dirt, be it sticky or dry traction is good. Sand is excellent, hard pack is excellent. Soupy mud, not too hot, I don't think the lugs are far enough apart to self clean, which is ok, I'm not much of a mudder anyway. I prefer trails and sand dunning.

That’s all I got for now, I do have a complete 01 style mountaineer front lights/grill which I need to install and Eddie Bauer flares/steps which need to be installed too. All will be colored matched to the truck. Those flares should cover over those big tires well, as they stick out pretty damn far.

Comments welcomed, I realize what happens when you post pictures on forums. I really don't need any 8" wide wheel comments, as I know how you guys feel.

~Mike..............
 
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white96x

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City, State
Rancho Cuc,Ca(home) SLO,Ca(school)
Year, Model & Trim Level
1997 E.B.
i agree with you...the wheel width does the truck justice...it's a nice wheel/tire combo and the truck looks good
 
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ryanmagahis

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City, State
Spring, TX
Year, Model & Trim Level
98 xlt
These are the first 31's I've seen look the best on a explorer. Awesome job. I'm planning on getting 31's.. Hope they look good with no torsion twist though. I'm also with you on that "8" tire wouldn't look as good" either. I'd want a tire and wheel combo where I could get the fattest tire out of it with no trimming. But since that's not gonna happen, I'd like the fattest look 31 on a 15x7 rim if possible also with no trimming haha
 
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EXPLDER

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va
Year, Model & Trim Level
91 xlt 4 sale, NEW 96 XLT
Thanks for the compliments guys. With the exception of my now crappier gas mileage I'm pretty happy with the way it looks and the way it performs off road. I do wish it was 3.7 gear though, I'm pretty sure its a 3.55 now.

~Mike...............
 
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Tbars4

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City, State
anaheim hills,california
Year, Model & Trim Level
95 ranger 4x4/ 91 X 4x4
...nice truck...gears will gring back some power and milage...:D
 
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Ynot Explore

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Oshawa, Ontario
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1999 Explorer Sport
Looks real sharp- nicely done.
 
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Shortkid

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High Point, NC
Year, Model & Trim Level
'97 XLT
Looks great. Lifting my 97 XLT quite soon hopefully and will have 32 BFG MTs. Hopefully will look somewhat like yours. Great job.
 
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SkanlaxJMO

Explorer Addict
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City, State
Syracuse, New York
Year, Model & Trim Level
96 XLT
looks sharp
 
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FROADER

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Huntington Beach, CA
Year, Model & Trim Level
1991 Eddie
If you're unsure or curious of what gears you have, check this out.

Axle codes on the inside door panel

41 - 3.27 non-limited slip (Explorer/Mountaineer)
45 - 3.55 non-limited slip (Explorer/Mountaineer)
46 - 3.73 non-limited slip (Explorer/Mountaineer)
42 - 4.10 non-limited slip (Explorer/Mountaineer)
D1 - 3.27 limited slip (Explorer/Mountaineer)
D4 - 3.73 limited slip (Explorer/Mountaineer)
D2 - 4.10 limited slip (Explorer/Mountaineer)
 
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EXPLDER

Well-Known Member
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June 2, 2003
Messages
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City, State
va
Year, Model & Trim Level
91 xlt 4 sale, NEW 96 XLT
Truck and Wheels for sale

Well, I just bought a 2001 Navigator, so the truck is for sale. I'll probly sell the wheels and tires seperately. Also needs to go are the Eddie Bauer fender flares and side steps (will not break up set) and a COMPLETE NEW Mountaineer front end (header panel, chrome grill, headlights, corner marker/turn signals). Anyone know were to gte a lift for a Navigator?? I know they share most bits wiht the Expedition, but the Nav has air shocks in front and air bags in rear (no coils).

~Mike..........
 
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