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SAS Discussion: Leaf vs Coil vs coilover: Axles?

Rusty

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Ok so i have done some searching and there really is a wealth of knowledge on here! I started this thread so those of you who have done a Solid Axle Swap can put in your two cents.

I would love to go SAS someday but for now all i can do is search it and plan.
I don't have a wealth of knowledge on this stuff so thats why i am looking for it here!

Take this opportunity to spill all the knowledge and experience you have. I would love to hear what is working for you and what isn't. What you have tried and what you want to try.

Pictures and explanations are greatly appreciated. I know there are some absolutely awesome rigs one here. So dont be afraid to state your opinion.

As for right now i am thinking when i am ready to go SAS i will want to go coils and some type of link setup with D30 or D44 and probably no bigger than 35's? My main use will be using it as a Daily Driver but also a weekend wheeler. I would want it more practical than over the top. I will want to go the cheaper route... find most stuff in the junkyard or other cheap avenues... basically i dont want to sink a huge amount into it.

Currently i have a 97 Explorer Sport w/ 4.0 ohv and 5pd. 3.73's i believe. My ex looks pretty much the same as 95exploderboy's and Spas's before they went SAS. I really like Spas's build. I would like to try and keep the COG lower rather than higher. I want it streetable.

Here are some of the questions I have:

1. Why did you choose Leaves over Coils?
2. Why did you choose coils over leaves?
3. What benefits or differences are there over one another?
4. What Axle did you choose and why?
5. Did you stick with the 8.8 in the rear? Why or why not?
6. What is a cheap build that would work?
7. How much did you build cost?
8. What Gears did you choose? How do you like them?
9. What did you choose for Transfer case/Low Low Range? ie. Atlas,Stubler
10. What about Coilovers? Why or Why not?
11. Should i just forget it and buy a hybrid?:p:

Like i said this is mostly for discussion and for you to pour out your knowledge on me and for others!

Thanks!
Rusty
 


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Rusty

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no opinions? no help? no past experiences you wanna share?

I'm all ears!
:popcorn:
 




JMan689

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Since i'm bored i guess i'll throw in what i am thinking for my SAS so far as well as try to answer your questions

3. What benefits or differences are there over one another?
- I believe coils have better travel and thats why alot of people use them up front, as for those that use leaves i'd assume the leaves are sturdier for those that like hittin mud.
4. What Axle did you choose and why?
- Again it depends on your needs, crawling it you're more likely to break axle shafts so the beefier the axle the better
5. Did you stick with the 8.8 in the rear? Why or why not?
- Most people seem to even out the size of the rear and front axles for what i'd assume would be durability
6. What is a cheap build that would work?
- Depends on what you want. D44/9" on 35ish size tires seems to be popular
8. What Gears did you choose? How do you like them?
- For the guys that still drive thiers on the street most choose gears that bring it back close to stock.
11. Should i just forget it and buy a hybrid?
- Absolutely not.


As for me, i want to do D60 up front and either a D60 or Ford 10.25" in the rear. Coils up front, and leaves out back (i think they just help complete the look even though i thought about doing coils) with 4 links and Ox lockers. Gears will depend on if i stick with the 4.0 or throw in a 302. Transfer case i'll probably end up running an NP205.

Why 1 ton axles? Froader and IZwack convinced me to just skip the D44/9" because so i wouldn't break axle shafts as often if ever.

Why the NP205? Because the junkyard is full of Bronco's not to mention one of my friends (Bigman) has one sitting around.

When will this take place? After college. And after the paint/cage/winch/on board air/any other little doo-daads.
 




IZwack

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Why 1 ton axles? Froader and IZwack convinced me to just skip the D44/9" because so i wouldn't break axle shafts as often if ever.
The 9" isn't a bad axle per say -- its used in top-dollar trophy trucks. Its only downside in its stick form is that its often not a full-floater axle (snap an axle shaft and a tire might take a vacation on you). In addition, it has a stamped housing which is both a good and bad thing . A stamped axle is a LOT easier to work with (cut, weld) than cast iron. But its drawback is that its stamped and not as strong as the cast axles. However, drawing on its strength, the 9" is very easy to truss, plate and made stronger. Two more pluses on the 9" is the 3rd member design and the 3rd bearing pinion support.
 




JMan689

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The 9" isn't a bad axle per say -- its used in top-dollar trophy trucks. Its only downside in its stick form is that its often not a full-floater axle (snap an axle shaft and a tire might take a vacation on you). In addition, it has a stamped housing which is both a good and bad thing . For one, a stamped axle is a LOT easier to work with (cut, weld) than cast iron. But its drawback is that its stamped and not as strong as the cast axles. However, drawing on its strength, the 9" is very easy to truss, plate and made stronger. Two more pluses on the 9" is the 3rd member design and the 3rd bearing pinion support.

I know its strong, thats why we use them for drag racing.

But you and Froader still convinced me to go 1 ton. Not to mention last i knew i could buy a D60 for 100 bucks. I just have no where to put it.

EDIT: plus i really don't want a wheel taking a vacation on me, that thought always scares me. Easiness does not bother me, if i wanted easy i'd leave the truck as is or pay someone else to build it for me.
 




Rusty

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bump
 




gear_grinder

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well a D44 cant be anyworse then the IFS we've got, lol god damed ball joints. i spent 300 bucks on a set of uppers and befor i relised it i could have SASed it and been done with the whole mess.
 




Rusty

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more input ... from all you SAS guru's i like your advice and everything so far! keep it coming!
 




IZwack

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You gotta wee be more specific, ask specific questions cauz there's just so much to cover that we'd end up writing a book just to mention it all.
 




Rusty

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I like books!:D
Thanks for the help.... let's see.. I am thinking along the lines of doing a d30 or d44 and i like the idea of coils ... but leaves sounds easier..

I have access to ALOT of Cherokees and there are alot of D30s ready for coil spring setup and that is what i am thinking. I really dont plan on going any larger than 35's so do you think it is smart/easier to just go that route rather than try and track down a d44 just to be bigger/stronger.

I can get the d30's for free form a friend. ... in which case if they are weak is there a good upgrade, not too expensive granted, for the weak points?

I also know that it would be a good idea to go with a high steer setup, as i found out when i bent my draglink on my cherokee and drove around for a month destroying a tire! Is there a good high steer setup for a d30, or better yet, can one be made some how. I know nothing about the who high steer thing.

These are a few questions foating around in my head as of today.. tomorrow maybe more.. but if you have any thoughts... please chime in..IZ i really appreciate your info as well as i have combed through your threads and learned a good bit (much more learning to go!)

Thanks
 




4wheeladdiction

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If you really want to build your truck right the first time, Get Dana 60's, coilovers, and four link it. I have a SAS Explorer under the for sale section, look at it and you can tell the amount of custom fab it took for leaf springs. With coilovers, you can mount them anywhere and the ride is 100X better.
 




RockRanger

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1. Why did you choose Leaves over Coils?

I THOUGHT it would be cheaper. If you do crossover steering it is a wash cost wise.
2. Why did you choose coils over leaves?

N/A
3. What benefits or differences are there over one another?

Coils won't have axle wrap like leafs but leafs have less parts to break.
4. What Axle did you choose and why?

Jeep Waggoneer. Just a few inches wider than stock. Plus where I use to live I couldn't fit a full width truck through the gate so thats as wide as I could go.
5. Did you stick with the 8.8 in the rear? Why or why not?

I am using an explorer 8.8 instead of my ranger 8.8. It was $60 at the juckyard so I bought it.
6. What is a cheap build that would work?

to do it right it won't be cheap.
7. How much did you build cost?

I spent about $3000
8. What Gears did you choose? How do you like them?

4.88 I like them. If I did it over I would get 5 somethings. The truck is trailer now so highway gears are no longer a need.

9. What did you choose for Transfer case/Low Low Range? ie. Atlas,Stubler

d.d machine doubler. Best mod to the truck. I would rather have it then the SAS
10. What about Coilovers? Why or Why not?

$$$$ To rich for me but if you got the green go for it.
11. Should i just forget it and buy a hybrid?

At the way gas prices are going it might not be a bad idea.
 




Rusty

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If you really want to build your truck right the first time, Get Dana 60's, coilovers, and four link it. I have a SAS Explorer under the for sale section, look at it and you can tell the amount of custom fab it took for leaf springs. With coilovers, you can mount them anywhere and the ride is 100X better.

^Thank you for your opinion..I think coilovers seems costly though!? although i am sure they could be found used or something?

RockRanger
Thanks for your info.. .the waggy axle.. is that a 44? and is it considered a high pinion or low? I have been reading about the FS Bronco axles and i think they are pretty much the same.

I will be using the ex as mostly a DD and a weekend wheeler. If i could do it right now i would be running a 33-35 tire so i don't think d60's are needed. But i dowant it to be reliable. I don't wanna build it up then a few months later... make it a trailer queen.. i t has to pull its own weight both ways!:D

I appreciate all of the comments so far!
 




rabbit91

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Bump from the grave :dead:
 








Randall

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1. Why did you choose Leaves over Coils?
N/A
2. Why did you choose coils over leaves?
On my first SAS, I chose coils over leafs because 1. The axle that I got was already set up for them; 2. approach angle. Seems that you can get the axle much closer to the farthest point forward of the vehicle by not using leafs.
3. What benefits or differences are there over one another?
Leafs: Simplicity of setup, less moving parts to go wrong, possibility of eliminating track bar, arguably cheapest to swap to.
Coils: Approach angle/ground clearance (at least in front of the axle), often better flex. softer ride.
4. What Axle did you choose and why?
SAS #1 : 1979 Ford Bronco high pinion Dana 44 (Cut down 5.85" on passenger side to equal EB width)
SAS #2 : 1979 Ford F-350 high pinion Dana 60 (full width)
5. Did you stick with the 8.8 in the rear? Why or why not?
SAS #1 : yes, already there, arguably as strong as the Dana 44, easily adaptable to 5 on 5.5 bolt pattern
SAS #2 : no, too narrow. Swapped to full width Dana 60 to match width/strength of front 60, plus full float.
6. What is a cheap build that would work?
meh... I'm not so good at keeping things 'cheap'. I'd say, leafs are the cheapest.
7. How much did you build cost?
More than I/you initially budgeted, by ATLEAST 100%
8. What Gears did you choose? How do you like them?
SAS #1 : 4.88, to match 35/36 inch tires (approximate max of Dana 44 - some say 37's)
SAS #2 : 5.13, to match 37-39.5 inch tires
9. What did you choose for Transfer case/Low Low Range? ie. Atlas,Stubler
Atlas II 4.33
10. What about Coilovers? Why or Why not?
Yes, packaging (easy to fit in tight spots - takes up less room than coils & shocks/towers), better flex, easy to match up and down travel between coils/shocks (duh - it's already been done for you), eliminates need to outboard coil towers/leaf mounts when using full width axles.
11. Should i just forget it and buy a hybrid?:p:
The two are not mutually exclusive, so, sure, whatever floats your boat.
 




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