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Sport97's sport

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My name is Vince, I live south of Pittsburgh, Pa. I bought my explorer after i graduated high school(july 08) with 50k for 3500

The Ex:
97 explorer sport, SOHC/auto, leather, moon roof, + mods...

The x: It had 50k miles on it when i got it, and had only minimal rust. Since then the rust has been fixed, and I'm over 100k. Maintenance has been typical with plugs/wires, fuel filter, all 4 ball joints and a thermostat. Running Mobil 1 syn has seemed to quiet the timing chain rattle. Its totally quiet in the summer, and slightly louder in the cold weather.



CURRENT STATE: 12/2011 @101k

-front skid plate
-removed front valance
-relocated front fog lights
-clear corners
-safari bar/lights (victim of rust and off roading)
-bed liner on a few things
-8" sub w/ amp
-4 pioneer speakers
-air box mod
-new rockers w/o rust:)
-cobra CB w/ 2 3ft wilson whips on the back
-Firestone At's , 265/75/16
-4 door leaf pack/aal/shackles

Near future:

-f150 tow hooks

Future: 3" body lift, 285/75 M/Ts

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Still running around not inspected... My new turn signal flasher will be in this week, so after a check on my rear brakes (which sound terrible, but they look OK from what I can see) It will be time for inspection and get my exhaust hanger rewelded.

Since I graduated I've been toying around with what to buy myself as a graduation gift to me (whenever I make some cash, i've dropped 500 in the last 10 days in boose and gas!). I've been hung up between MTs/locker, a 4x4 quad, or a new gun....

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Finally inspected.... turn signal flasher didn't fix my signal, but it worked when they tested it so it passed. I need a new MFS i guess....

Last tank got me a tad over 18mpg, decent bit of "highway" driving, maybe half of the tank. I say "highway" because it is a 4 lane, but there were hills, and red lights and such. Normal driving habits on that tank.

My mileage before that was 16-16.5ish, that is being kinda heavy footed.

Regardless, i'll take that for 265/75s and 4.10 gears...

Few pics, went up the mountain to seek cooler weather. 1st pic I have the antennas off because they kept hitting trees. 3rd pic was where someone torched a car (probably a stolen one, or one someone parked and went for a hike or something) the car was taken away but it obviously was a car fire.

Last pic was memorial day morning... driving to the parts store and I see my neighbor on the side of the road, swing back to give him a hand. Checked all over couldn't get it started. It had fuel, thinking the coil went on it. Had to drive him to the guy down the street to send him a tow truck. It barely made it on the roll back, Had to lift the rear bumper so it did drag. Its a 1966 Shelby gt350. All original, never touched. 47k miles, 2nd owner. Beautiful car. Sad to see it put on the rollback, but atleast it only happened 2 miles from home.


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Total brake failure today at 55mph. Rear metal line on the axle blew out. Luckily it was up hill and the car in front got out of the way. My e brake didn't work but I got it stopped.

It was leaking so bad it lost 95% of the fluid in the master. I spent half an hour in the 95 degree weather to fix my e-brake. Limped it 2 miles to my house. I come to find they don't sell the pre-bent lines. I don't feel like bending lines, getting adapters, etc... so I limped it to the shop without brakes. Prob wont have time to fix it until Monday I was told.

What a way to start a 4 day weekend... now I have no car for the whole time.

Man that sucks but it could've been alot worse. Glad nobody got hurt. One more reason to love the Rust Belt. LOL.

Yep. That is the second time in a week I've had a car issue. Not liking that pattern! Last one the ground cable worked itself loose. It wasn't loose on the terminal itself but the cables that hook into the terminal connector were loose. Took me a while to figure it out.

you get everything squared away with the brakes vince?

Yep yep, new rear brake line, and a new master cylinder. It stops much better. I have new rear pads in ready to go, once its not 97 degrees out.

Taking the explorer up to Yankee Lake to get it dirty muddin' tomorrow. Hopefully I don't break it!

Good to hear, and definitely lookin forward to those pics!! :thumbsup:

I'll post up a few pics, maybe a video or two later.

The ex survived. I beat the snot out of it. I was basically the smallest thing on the trails. Nothing too crazy, just mud, lots of mud and ruts. Lots.

I under estimated what I could do so I ended up hitting mud pits with extra speed. My buddy said my front end caught 3 feet of air coming out of this one. I could hear my front skid plate slamming the ground a lot. Smashed both front fog lights and some scraps in the paint (hopefully will buff out). I had 1 inch of mud on everything under the car. Mud all over every panel, on the seats, the dash, the roof, everywhere.

Only issue is the steering. It seems that a boot on the steering column near where the steering box is got torn and jacked up and is binding my steering up.

Had a lifted jeep guy tell me I was nuts for taking my daily driver back there and doing what I did. I towed out an international scout as well. Great time. The explorer really impressed me a lot.

Good news. After round 2 of pressure washing, which was mainly under the hood, all is good. Mud must have gotten in the torn boot causing binding. Boot is still torn but the steering is all good now. Ill prob just hose clamp the boot back on and use some silicon to seal the tear.

Here is a few pics... someone has a video, i'll see what I can do.



That last pic was after a rutted mud pit. I hit it with a good clip of speed because I watched my buddies cummins on mud tires slipping and sinking in it. I felt like since I had not much clearance and no mud tires speed was the answer. I apparently caught 3 ft of air at one point. Made it through a few times without spinning at all.

You can see my fog lights got hungry and ate some mud. I guess I hit some deep stuff and buried the front bumper.

Steering is still packed with mud making it hard to steer. Everytime I hose it out it drives great until the mud dries again. One of these times i'll eventually get the mud all out of there.

Old fog lights are out (never even had a chance to wire them...) since i busted both of them. Planning on Hella 500s on the bumper (Which will be bedlined soon as well)

The ex is running great recently. Pulled 18.4mpg on a very hilly 2 lane drive that killed a full tank, granted there was 40 miles or so of highway it was majority hills. Pretty pleased with that number for how many times I had my foot planted into the floor and rolling on 265s...

Good times man, You may just need to crawl under the Ex and scrape that crap out yourself. I've had to do it a few times on Humvees and the pressure washer can only do so much.

Looking good. I wish mine was on the road already, these pics make me want to take it out.

Keeper, yeah I agree, I need to get under there and do it manually.

Accord, before you know it you will be slinging gravel on some trails!

Finally got the mud out of the steering and its all good again. Bedlined the front bumper (just the metal part, I left the painted plastic part alone so it would match the fender flares. Pics when I get the camera charged. My phone camera is trash.

Awesome man. Looking forward to seeing what it looks like.

I'll be out of town this weekend so early next week i'll post pics. I need foglights up front somewhere, I just don't know which route I want to go.

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Forgot the pics of the bumper. Big shock there. Been really busy lately. Right now I have 300 bucks set aside, and should have another 200 or more set aside to buy something soon. The question is what....

option 1: locker. there really is no downside to this option.

option 2: new rims. I want to change up the look of the ex and wheels are one way. plus I need new tires sooner than later probably. Prob get 16x8s because I'm not lifting anymore so i want to keep 265/75s.

option 3: buy a gun. not really a down side here besides it seems like i never get out to the range to actually shoot.

option 4: keep saving for a 4x4 quad.

option 5: replace my cracked windshield. BORING!