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Project what was I thinking???

Ok, so I feel obliged to give a little backstory as to how I arrived here...Here goes.

My most recent vehicle before the X was a 2000 Mercury Mountaineer. To be frank, I wasn't an X or Mounty freak then but I'm a Ford guy and it was a nice SUV.

Fast forward to November 2010 and my dad buys an old 92 Explorer, 4 door 5 speed to pick up semi parts....Rusted to hell, 170k miles, but loads of new parts on it. He jokingly one day said that he'd trade his for mine and I went for it.

Before you think I'm a complete fool, he had gifted me $2000 to pay off my Mounty (as a gift when my wife got pregnant) and offered the Explorer and $1000 for my Mounty. I had got a good deal on the Mounty so I'm not really losing out....

I finally decided to pull the trigger because after 3 years of marriage & with a 9 month old baby my wife decided to leave me (I'm still a great guy & there's no better husband or dad, apparently, she just didn't want to be "tied down"). So that's my sob story. Single daddy every other week and in need of a distraction. So anyway this is my mid-life crisis early. I've always wanted to build a mud/rock crawler and I figured what do I have to lose at this point? Unfortunately funds are a little tight but hey, they are for most people.

That's my story. I'm going to throw some more posts on what I've done thusfar and I've got some pics to put up once I get a little time. If you take the time to read this, enjoy.
 


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94whiteX

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94whitex

is that flat black paint or bed liner material?? looks good!
It's Hot Rod Black. It's between flat and gloss. When the weather gets better I'll get some better pics up. It came out pretty good for painting it in my garage. Thanks for the complement.
 


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94whiteX

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Looks good! Now you'll have to change your screenname since you don't have a white ex anymore!

You ever trail ride around here? I have found a few places and I'm itching to get out and break some stuff here as soon as I get it back on the road ;)
I haven't had it out yet, got it back together just before winter hit. I did the suspension lift over the summer and didn't have it out. Have plans for another suspension change so it may be later in the summer before I get to take it out.
 




Baddecision93

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I haven't had it out yet, got it back together just before winter hit. I did the suspension lift over the summer and didn't have it out. Have plans for another suspension change so it may be later in the summer before I get to take it out.

Let me know if you get it to where you plan on taking it out this summer. On the Buckeye Explorer forum we are talking about doing a springtime meet & greet...it would be cool if you could come.


Ok, so update.
I took it to Ford to get my brakes power bled and to get my alignment. They did both of those things and then had to change my master cylinder too for some reason...I have no idea why but this is two master cylinders in a row on two different Explorer-type vehicles...I don't know if it's me or them.
Anyway, got that done and they also installed my driver side extended brake line since I already had the part in the truck and they were already fiddling with the brakes. Total damage was $321. Not great, but I'll take it.

Got to drive it tonight! :) I forgot to put the front sway bar bushings back in (found them in a pile of tools) and the thing wobbles all over the road. Gonna fix that this weekend. Also need to weld bottom rear shock mounts to the sway bar bracket (best place I think will work). Also never put pins back in tie rod bolts so I need to do that too. Other than that she's good to go!

I have some more pics on my camera I need to get on here but I wanted to at least throw an update out since she's back on the road!!!!
 




lounge lizard

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oh man!

I am so looking forward to the pictures! lots and lots of pictures! LOL
 




Baddecision93

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Update

Ok, have some pics to throw up. Got the new shock mounts done today and it is absolutely unbelievable the difference between having no front sway bar and no rear shocks to having them. It still has play in the steering like a truck with 170,xxx on the clock will but it's night and day.
It got dark and I didn't get a chance to get a pic of the new mounts but essentially I have a bracket that mounts on the back side of the sway bar mount on the axle. It's great having a dad who will help; I gave him the idea for the mount and he went to town cutting and welding. It works great.

Ok, so some pics :)
(On the decals, sorry if Blee ever reads this - I showed my buddy the link to your decals & he made some for me at his t-shirt shop. I couldn't pass up free so I put them on and they look pretty banging, I think)

Lifted!
This is a nice picture of the cancer on it that I have to deal with. I want to get a pic of all my new body panels to show you what I have in store, lol.

0216111710.jpg



The front w/decal...
0213111544.jpg


The back w/decals...
0213111543.jpg


Here's a height reference. My dad is 5' 8".
HeightReference.jpg


Another front perspective
Frontwbanner.jpg


Here's the front clearance w/31s. Tonight dad and I actually made a neat hanger for the extended brake line to keep the line out of the way of the tire at full lock. I didn't get a chance to get a pic of that
Frontclearance.jpg


Another front shot cause I'm cool like that
Front.jpg

I'll call this the 'before shot' since I have a new grill sitting in the shop & I've got a new front bumper coming in the immediate future


Ok, there's lots to do & lots more to show but that's a good update for now :D
 




Tbars4

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Tonight dad and I actually made a neat hanger for the extended brake line to keep the line out of the way of the tire at full lock.

...Pics or it didn't happen...:D
 




Baddecision93

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...Pics or it didn't happen...:D

Ask and ye shall receive!

It's nothing super exciting but I thought it was a pretty cool idea. It's just attached through the top of the inner fender with a zip tie
P1010265.jpg



The crowning achievement (my humble opinion :))
Just torched off the old shock mounts from the leaf spring plates and welded them to a piece of flat stock. Got longer bolts and new barrel clips and voila!
P1010269.jpg


Here's another angle:
This one shows better the old mount that we chopped off
P1010268.jpg


And one more for good measure:
P1010266.jpg


Finally, yes I know I need to reroute my hard brake lines. They're ok for now though I think. I'm going to do that next month when I redo the rear brakes.
 




lounge lizard

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need some spacers between the new shock mount and the sway bar mount. so you can really pull that mount up tight.
 




Baddecision93

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need some spacers between the new shock mount and the sway bar mount. so you can really pull that mount up tight.

Good eye. :) I'm actually heading to the hardware this weekend for that. We bought some pipe and the diameter was right but the walls were so thin we just scrapped them all together. I used grade 8 bolts at least!
 




lounge lizard

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:lol at least I'm paying attention! :lol
 




Baddecision93

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Update (more money spent)

Lol, can't stop spending.

I'll finally let another planned chapter slip. I don't like talking about things I "plan" on doing cause planning and doing are two very different things. But since I've accumulated parts I feel comfortable that this next phase will get completed.

I bought the gen II overhead console w/moonroof controls...Why, you ask? Well just so happens I also got a killer deal on a early 90's Honda moonroof. The complete assembly. So...we're going to put the moonroof in and wire it up to the Ford overhead console. It will look stock(ish). I'll get the Ford moonroof controls, map lights, and temperature readout. I'm very pumped for warm weather so we can get to it!

What else....bought new rear brakes and a new u-joint and just waiting for some time and ambition to put them on.

Also ordered a custom front bumper from a local fab shop, and the tire spindle kit from EMS Offroad to build the tire carrier for the custom rear bumper I'm going to be building. Got a big piece of metal from a guy at work and he volunteered his time to help me make it.

Also ordered a Cobra Highgear mic from Amazon (got a $10 off Amazon coupon from my mom so I figured why not). Now I just need to couple it to my old Cobra 29 Nightwatch from high school.

Lastly, joined therangerstation.com to be able to peruse their classifieds and wouldn't you know it I found a fellow 15 minutes away selling a 4.10 diff, TTB. Got it for $180. Going to pick it up tomorrow. I'm ridiculously pumped. He also has all the parts to go to dual piston calipers in the front but I've spent waaaay too much money already so I'll just wait & hopefully he has them in a month or two.

A lot of people told me I will regret not going 4.56 but all my wheeling & camping is a highway drive away and I'm not entirely sure about 33s in the future. And I will have less than $300 in 4.10 where I would have had $567 in new ring & pinion + at least $600 for a shop to set them up. It's worth $900 savings to me to just make 4.10 work for now. Gonna beat the heck out of my current 3.27, that's for sure. :)

I should be rolling with custom front & rear bumpers and 4.10 gears by summer, moonroof open, hair flowing in the breeze!!! (Ok, so not so much the hair part but the rest for sure!)

Edit:
Also bought Skyjacker extended swaybar links from a guy here on the forum...Should be getting them today, according to my UPS emails :)
 




lounge lizard

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well!

you could spend some for me if you have some time!

did I subscribe to this thread???? I think I did already! the mind! a terrible thing to....... where did I put that thing again??
 




Baddecision93

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Doing some posin'

Figured I might as well throw these up. Tested a little flex at my buddy's farm. Gonna do sway bar discos for the back & UPS brought me my extended sway bar links for the front so hopefully next time I take some of these there is a visible difference in flex.

For fun I'm going to get a pic of all the parts I have yet put on. It will give a nice idea of what's to come. Going to try to document some of the cancer too, to show what I'm up against. They don't call it a project for nothing, lol.

Anyway, without any further ado:

Probably my favorite shot

PoserVIII.jpg


Showing a little better flex here, I think

PoserVII.jpg


Other side

PoserVI.jpg


And another view, lol

PoserV.jpg


Rear clearance

PoserIV.jpg


Another good rear shot. And some terrible, terrible cancer. Moment of silence please. :( Dang Ohio road salt.

PoserI.jpg


Little bit of a bumper gap there whilst flexed. Gonna work on that when I put on the new bumper lol.

Poserbumpergap.jpg


I believe, I believe, I believe...that's all folks!
 




lounge lizard

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that last one must have been a hard picture to take! LOL
 




Baddecision93

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Eh, that's what custom rear bumpers are for ;)

You'll see what I have in store when I take my pics of parts sometime this weekend.

What's gonna be downright heartbreaking are the cancer shots I have to get. Stay tuned. 19 years + salt = bad times
 




lounge lizard

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I meant the thumb being in the picture! LOL


so what are you going to do for the cancer??
 




Baddecision93

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I meant the thumb being in the picture! LOL


so what are you going to do for the cancer??

Lol, gotcha. No I had someone else taking pics lol. My buddy (his farm in the pics) was the one working the camera.

Well, here's what I'm going to do for rust:

Bodyrockers.jpg


BodypanelsI.jpg

BodypanelsII.jpg

Gastankbodypanel.jpg


^^^^^
That one is especially important. The rust around the gas tank fill is unbelievable. And every one I've seen in the junkyard around here has literally the exact same problem :(. It's actually rusted so bad behind the panel (what I guess you'd call the "inner" body panel) that we're going to have to fab up a big ol patch sheet out of blank sheet metal.

And this one VVVV isn't a body panel but still was worth buying to make it look just a little better:
Newgrill.jpg


And here is a pic of the console I'm going to use to wire the moonroof in. I didn't get a pic of the wire harness (cause I still have to pull it from another truck lol) or the moonroof (cause it's still sitting in my buddy's garage):
Overheadconsole.jpg


And here's for my rear tire carrier:
Tirespindle.jpg


And here's what I'm most excited about...4.10 front diff!
410frontdiff.jpg


I have a LOT to do lol. I didn't get a pic of the extended sway bar links I got, or the CB mic but I'll try to get a flex shot after I put on the extended links. I want to see if it makes that much of a difference.
I also need to get some detailed shots of the rust to show how badly I need to replace all those panels. I have a feeling this is going to be a little worse than I'm ready for but it needs done :(.

Got an email and my new front bumper should be done by the end of next week so hopefully I'll get it put on in the next week or two.
Then I need to get out and actually finish (and start lol) making my rear bumper and tire carrier. I got invited to wheel April 16th so I really want to get it ready by then but I don't know if I'm going to get all I want done finished in time.
I at least want the new gears in and the new bumpers on.
But I also wanted to get a rear locker in before I install the new axle and so I'm gonna need $300 there...not to mention I'm getting an axle w/rear discs so I don't know if I'm going to have the master cylinder fighting me. Some guys say you need to change the MC and then others say you can just adjust the threaded rod in the cylinder to let more pressure through so I really don't know till I get there.

Well, there's my little update lol.
 




Baddecision93

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Quickie update

Yes, spending more money.
Heaven forbid I actually put any parts on lately :rolleyes:

I found some nerf bars on Craigslist for $100. I offered him $65 and he came back with $75. Yes, I know to some degree they affect ground clearance but my axles are still the lowest point and to be 100% honest this thing is a little chore to get in and out of without them. I know, good problem to have, but still.

Went down to get these tonight:
nerfbars.jpg


Side note, turns out the bottom half of my county...still really, really flooded. Took me 2 hours to get back home :(. My antiquated GPS was absolutely worthless so I thought I would tackle it on my own. The guy lived on a 2 lane highway...which was completely shut down cause there was standing water on it. I got there alright but by the time I left it was dark. A 45 minute trip home took 2 hours. At one point I took a side road till it deadended and the road I could turn on was closed to the right and the left. I tried one way and made it about 3/10 of a mile and stared out across a lake. I don't want to come across as a pu$$y but I was getting scared. There was literally no one around...I had to back up the whole way and get back to the main road and every freaking side road I took was flooded at some point. As well as the highway. Screw this rain.
 




lounge lizard

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wow!
send them to me and I will try them out for you!

TRUST ME! i'LL SEND THEM BACK WHEN i'M DONE!
 


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Baddecision93

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wow!
send them to me and I will try them out for you!

TRUST ME! i'LL SEND THEM BACK WHEN i'M DONE!

Lol. I'll get right on that...You'll pay me for the $60 to ship them too, right? ;)

I don't know what they were for but the tube size is gigantic (that's what she said). They'll work quite nicely I think. I just need to fab up some brackets for them.
 




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