My Project: Steering box options for a Gen 2 | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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My Project: Steering box options for a Gen 2

Hey all,
On my quest to turn my '96 5.0 AWD into an Atlas'd , solid axle crawler on 35's, I'm pondering on a steering box of choice for the swap.

I'm thinking of running a 78-79 4x4 Ford box , but the internals of an '81/up 4x2 box to get it swingin' the right way. This would put the box outside the frame which I know would fit and be very strong.

Alternately, I was thinking of the Gen 1 box. However, I don't know if it would be strong enough, or moreover, since it mounts inside the frame would it fit with a 5.0 shoe horned in there.

I'd like to hear what you all have done in your SAS ventures. I've got to remove my AWD junk and crossmember refab. Got my work cut out for me. (no pun intended)

Thanks in advance, guys
'Brett
 



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I'm in the same boat (hell, we even have the same vehichle). I believe cdsl227 (who has a stock V8) used a Toyota IFS box that mounted outside the frame. I've also seen some Chevy 4X2 boxes the mount on the outside of the framerail. Not sure if the Chevy boxes would work but it's worth a look.
 






A few other boxes I have seen used in different swaps (some on explorers some on others) are ScoutII, toyota fj60, and nissan frontier boxes.
 






Something to look into, as ive never seen it done on an Explorer but think it will work----


A whatever to 79 F150 4x4 box, and dont swap the guts to 2x4. This is what im putting on the eb right now. Its really really strong, mounts outside the framerail, and the pitman arm swings forward. You would mount it farther back on the frame say a few inches or so infront of the coil tower. Its a really stout box that is pretty cheap new and most parts stores keep them in stock.

No matter what, dont EVER use any kind of early Bronco box. :thumbdwn:
 






Steering Box Options

james t said:
Something to look into, as ive never seen it done on an Explorer but think it will work----


A whatever to 79 F150 4x4 box, and dont swap the guts to 2x4. This is what im putting on the eb right now. Its really really strong, mounts outside the framerail, and the pitman arm swings forward. You would mount it farther back on the frame say a few inches or so infront of the coil tower. Its a really stout box that is pretty cheap new and most parts stores keep them in stock.

No matter what, dont EVER use any kind of early Bronco box. :thumbdwn:

Hmmmm,
I really don't think you'll be able to get that Box Close enough to the coil tower to get the pitman arm to swing in an arc that would be close enough to the knuckle's tie rod mounting points. I've owned 6 Early Bronco's in my Lifetime.

As far as boxes go, I'm a true blue Ford man. I'm gonna try and use all Ford parts on this swap, save the Atlas of course. The '78-'79 4x4 Box is a great and stout box. The guts out of an early 80's 4x2 box (worm gear, input shaft, washers,and seals) would easily swap right over in about an hour and get this box swinging correctly.(the 4x2 box's reversed worm gear dictates this)
Also, I think they're cheap and readily available in the bone yards. This will be my path and I'll let you know how it works out.
Thanks for the input guys.
'Brett
 






watching for ideas.
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BrettMavrik said:
Hmmmm,
I really don't think you'll be able to get that Box Close enough to the coil tower to get the pitman arm to swing in an arc that would be close enough to the knuckle's tie rod mounting points. I've owned 6 Early Bronco's in my Lifetime.
Yes, as a matter of fact you can. Im doing it on one of mine right now. :) Unless there is something on the framerail in front of the coil tower im not remembering, it should work just like it works on an EB.

Edit- the pic is screwed up. The plate hangs below the frame at the bottom and the lower bolt hole is sleeved to the other side which is a matching plate.
 

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Wow. Do you have a photo of the draglink geometry? I'd like to see how it looks. If the drag link isn't pretty near parallel with the tie rod when steered center (by near parallel, I mean from an overhead view) I'd suspect a big loss in turning radius; meaning you would run out of pitman arm swing from full lock to full lock on the knuckles.
Let me know how it all comes out.
'Brett
 






Ill have more pics soon. As far as ive heard it works good, the guy im copying mine from is way more harder corer of an offroader than any of us will ever be. :D He told me that turning radius was not reduced in the least. Im just doing a copy of his pic. He went with the non-modded 4x4 box after tearing up a couple of stock boxes, and then destroying one of the high-$$$ Duff boxes on the 'Con. The good thing about doing it on an EB is the fact that it moves the box back really close to the cross member which is a much stouter part of the frame than the very front.

Anyhoo, i should have pics in 5-10 days. :)
 






james t said:
Ill have more pics soon. As far as ive heard it works good, the guy im copying mine from is way more harder corer of an offroader than any of us will ever be. :D QUOTE]

Kewl. Well, yer talkin to one of those guys as well...
I've done every trail in Moab, Choke Cherry Canyon, Montrose Colorado, the Hammers in Johnson Valley, blahblahblah...... All in one of my Early Broncos.
I'd post some pics of them on this thread if I could figure out how to do it.

The reason I'm modding my Explorer is because I want something that can wheel the reasonably rough stuff abroad, but moreover, get me there very comfortably. Not to mention the greatest thing of all about an Explorer. You can be 6'-2" and stretch out in the back to a good nights sleep. ;)
 






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