We welcome the General 2.0 to the stable | Page 3 | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

  • Register Today It's free!

We welcome the General 2.0 to the stable

Edit: Photo bucket has royaly screwed over forums across the world!! I'll work on getting pics put back in here as best I can as time allows. Gonna take awhile for me to do all my threads though. :mad:

Been looking at getting another Explorer for quite a while now due to the 260k+ miles on mine and me losing confidence in making it to wherever I'm going and back in it anymore. Been thinking all along I wanted another 2nd generation Explorer mainly because I just love the damn things. However, the TTB front end in the 1st gens were appealing as well. I'll leave it at this, I wanted either a 1st gen Explorer sport (getting hard to find, trust me!!) or a 2nd gen V8 AWD so I could eventually put that 5.0 in my current Explorer. Been looking all over the Southwest, from San Diego, to Phoenix and Vegas, Sante fe, Texas..............I was about to give it up and figure out something else when a 94 sport popped up in Aurora. By the time we saw the ad and got ahold of the guy we were the 3rd in line to get a shot at it. Game over. It only has 139k miles on it and wants $1000. I'll be damned if he didn't call the next day to tell us the 1st two didn't even show up and the 2nd in line got called into work, so we were up!! So we got a 94 sport 4X4 4.0L OHV, 5-Speed. Checking axle codes on the door sticker revealed it has the same rear end as mine, a 8.8" with 3.73 LS, I've been really happy with the limited slip on mine so I was glad to see it wasn't open at least. It's got a lot of little squeaks, pops and creeks to track down, but I'm happy with the deal. The body is straight, the paint is fair, I think we made out ok. Anyway, here's a few pics of it next to Coors Field last night. I'll get some more of the interior and whatnot when I get to do a little work on it. But for now..........





Anybody that knows me knows I DON'T do stock!! gotta get into that weird (well weird to me anyway) area of the forum where people know stuff about these 1st gens, and get doing some research and pricing. I havent been on a trail in over 2 months and it's beginning to take a toll!!!!

Join the Elite Explorers for $20 each year.
Elite Explorer members see no advertisements, no banner ads, no double underlined links,.
Add an avatar, upload photo attachments, and more!

I saw that post on Colorado 4x4 recovery.

I'm shocked that the Toyota broke. I've been led to believe that Toyotas are indestructible and require zero maintenance because they are simply the most reliable machines on the planet.

I was with him when it broke. It was dark, there were 4 other rigs at least a half mile behind us on the trail unable to get up the hill where we were, and we had just winched him out of a snow pit that would have swallowed any truck trying to get through it. One of the rigs below us had a baby with them, we needed to get everyone out together, and I was the one that talked him into leaving it for the night. I also suggested he take the pic that he posted on rescue's page in order to help explain what the deal was. Fun day that turned into a lot of winching, tire chains and max trax, but it all worked out, his truck is home now, and although we got home much much later than planned, everyone is home safe and sound, and the only unfortunate casualty of the trip was his rear diff, and I somehow managed to lose the side skirt trim off my truck. Luckily I found it when I hiked down to the other group to discuss what to do before the 3 of us further up the trail attempted to come back down. So, before FR4x4's anniversary run up China Wall next weekend, I gotta mount 4 tires, swap out the driveshaft with my 96, and I'm picking up a hi-lift from the Lonetree Cabela's sometime this week as well. I also got to experience the difference having a set of chains on, albeit only on the rear can make as well, so they've been moved a little higher up the list for next winter.

As for the Toyota, I've heard the same, but you can see for yourself in the pic he posted, a piece of the ring gear is sticking right out the back of the housing. No clue how he did it, he literally got winched out of the snow pit and was turning it around when it locked up. I was gone on my hike down to the other group and found out about it when I got back. So thankful he understood the importance of leaving it for the night and didn't argue or try to stay with it. There's no way I was leaving anyone on the mountain all night and we just weren't equipped to do much in the dark anyway.

All in all a good outing even though we made it home much later than planned. I still need to get pics onto the computer and resized to post here, I'll work on that in just a little bit.

Join the Elite Explorers for $20 each year.
Elite Explorer members see no advertisements, no banner ads, no double underlined links,.
Add an avatar, upload photo attachments, and more!

Apologies for the delay but we had a hacker jacking around in our network and computers and its been hell just to get pics from my phone to the computer, but I finally managed. I also got out on another run, but I'll get that little report together next. This meet up was with the founder of the website I do trail write-ups for, other contributors, and a few from the general public. We split into two groups, the group I was with actually recorded a GPX track and took lots of pics for one of the contributors in the group to do a write up on it. We met up in Sedalia and ran a convoy down to the trailhead.


Met up with others that were coming up from the south in the trailhead parking lot.


Since this is a trail system we at we threw down a map on my hood and got a plan together.


Being one of several consecutive warm days the remaining snow was melting off making the trails pretty muddy


What you see up the hill here is a series of steps they call Moab hill, or mini Moab for it's resemblance to not only the type of obstacles you see in Moab, but also the grippy rocks Moab is known for. On this day, although we saw several well built rigs, only 2 of them made it up the hardest part because of all the mud making things slick.


I came down a slightly easier section, ok, a WAY easier section since this was our maiden voyage after all

We all parked and had lunch before finishing the trail


The guy sitting on his tailgate in that last pic is Dave. He's the one that broke his rear diff as we were trying to get out that night.


After the trail was done, some people headed home, and others of us decided to head out a different way back through the trail system. Shoulda trusted my gut on this one cuz guess who got stuck first when we got into some snow?? YUP!!


what you see there is dirt they had thrown on the snow for me to try and get some traction. We tried max trax also. Finally took me borrowing a set of chains to finally get up the hill. Then when I had a good head of steam up and was feeling good about making it up the hill, the guy in front of me got stuck


So I had to stop on the hill and AGAIN, and got stuck AGAIN. Rest of the night was winching me up, winching out the tacoma, and ultimately deciding we needed to go clear out the way we came in rather than the last 3/4 of a mile so to a more main trail. This is when he somehow blew out his diff. We left it there on got out of there. Then I still had about a 2 hr drive home and a stop at Wal-Mart to get a sick girl some things. Got home around 1-1:30 AM. Here's a few more random shots from the day






All in all a good day. The last part wasn't as fun, but made the outing more memorable. I decided during the week to go ahead and get the new to us tires we picked up mounted (did em by hand at home) and wire up the rest of the lights, mount the CB, and some other little things done so we could take it out for a 2nd shakedown on a trail called China Wall. I still have to gather all those pics and will post up about that run as soon as I can. Hopefully starting on ball joints, tie rod ends and beam bushings tomorrow, possibly bearings and seals also as well as the front driveshaft. Got a pretty good vibration at around 65 and want to minimize it as much as possible. No runs planned in the near future but did get invited to Easter Jeep Safari by the founder of the site I do write-ups for. I really want to be on at least 33's before going out there, but we'll see since there's no chance I can get a body lift and 33's put on in just over a week. Not in my little ass shop anyway with basic tools. Also going to compare the smittybuilt 8k winch to the Harbor Freight Badlands 12k winch. They have it at their parking lot sale this weekend for $300 with the coupon, plus another $50 for the mounting plate. The smittybuilt 8k is the same price so I'm gonna check out some reviews. At $350 for a winch and mount complete, I'm thinking the 12k might be the way to go since it's overboard for a sport, it won't have to work near as hard. IDK, we'll see. :salute:

Having too much winch is never a bad thing.

I just can't see any harm in a winch working less it's capable of. I know I'm happier when I can work less than I'm capable of? I just need to read up on some reviews on it. I only know of one person that has one of the smaller ones but I'm pretty sure he hasn't used it yet. Don't want to need it and have it fail at any price.

Here's what I have:
Except I ran the line through a Hawse fairlead instead of the rollers. Rollers can get banged up on rocks.

Of the reviews I've seen (like from magazines), the Badlands never faired well. One test I remember reading said that their Badlands winch didn't work straight out of the box so they got a replacement- that didn't work either. But I've also read that the Badlands winch shares the same part numbers of its internals with an ARB winch- don't know if it's true.

I got the Superwinch because Josh has lots of experience using it without issue. And it's inexpensive. I've used mine 3 times so far. It's not super fast, but it gets the job done.

So after reading just the negative reviews alone, I decided against it. Not as many bad reviews as good, but all the bad ones seemed to all have different problems with it. So I'll be taking a look at your suggestion Tom, as well as the smittybuilt 9k. I think before I worry too much about that however, I'm going to grab a 60" hi-lift xtreme, a chain or two, and maybe another snatch strap. I've recovered a dodge 1/2 ton off Johnny's park that went off the side in snow using nothing but those things. Took all afternoon but it was doable at least. Plus we found one online for $79, cheapest I personally saw anywhere else was $140. Really need to figure out what we're going to do to get some 35's under this thing before stressing a winch anyway.

Shopping for ball joints and tie rod ends right now which is next on the list as well as the front driveshaft. Haven't gotten a response from Bill's yet, I'm sure he's as busy as everyone else is this time of year. Might end up trying to get one out of the junk yard again now that I now exactly what I need. If a $20 JY shaft gets me through the season, then I can live with that.

Also found the new to me manual t-case is leaking pretty bad, looks to be from around the speed sensor though so just o-ring most likely, no biggie. And as an electrician it's a little embarassing to admit, but for some reason whenever I have the front bumper lights on, the ones up above won't come on. As soon as turn off the fronts, they will. Not sure what the deal is there so will have to take it all apart again and see what's goin on.

Finally got the pics from the 2nd shakedown run loaded up.












Also got some new official "map crew" stickers for trailsoffroad.com the website I do trail write ups for.



I need a really good half hour long downpour to come clean the truck and driveway. Luckily there's a very very slim chance of the landlord seeing it. There's no water bib on the outside of the building so only option to wash it down is 5 gallon bukets up and down a flight of stairs, or running a hose from the kitchen sink, grrrrrrr. Wonder how long before the HOA leaves a note about it.

Only thing new is a trip to the junk yard last Saturday that yielded a good front driveshaft off of a pristine 94 limited with only 78k miles on it. Really wish I had more time and money to get all the pretty stock parts off of it, and pull that motor!! This thing literally looked like it had never even seen a rain storm. Skids, underneath looked like they were painted at the factory yesterday. Also picked up some other little odds and ends to fix little things on the interior. also got Moog problem solver ball joints for the right side. Now with the front end is nice and quiet (when the sway bar is disconnected, all four end link bolts are worn, bushings are worn, and it clunks all over the place. That will have to wait though as steering is next on the list. Needs all new TRE's all the way across. Finally got a chance today however to disconnect the sway bar and play around some hills and ditches. Got it flexed out all the way in a ditch to the point I could feel it just barely teetering on 2 wheels. No more noises (for the most part), no more noise in the front driveshaft, I'm ready for another shake down run.

Was trying to load some pics, but I gotta edit them up a bit first, I'll post em up later today.

Ready quicker than I thought........so here they are:




I haven't eaten yet, but man I'm stuffed.............


Hopefully more updates sooner rather than later..............

Used nightshade to give the headlights that angry look a while back



New moog sway bar end link bushings and then clank clank in the front is gone. That pretty much took care of all the noises this thing had when purchased, FINALLY. Still needs some steering parts, but will be fine for just a bit longer. Also made the bottom part of the end links a quick disconnect. I had a couple bolts of the proper size with a nice long shoulder on them laying around, so I cut the threads off of them, marked and drilled holes through them and used them with some washers and cotter pins to make the disconnects.



Thing is coming along! Have to say, sway bar discos were one of the easiest and best choices I made for off-roading...

Thing is coming along! Have to say, sway bar discos were one of the easiest and best choices I made for off-roading...

EASILY!! No more draggin out tools to disconnect. I still need to fab some for my 2nd gen. Just need to round up a little more hardware and they'll be done too.

So haven't updated this thread lately, but not whole lot to report. I got all the top lights wired up, man do they light up a trail at night!! But I guess that should be expected with 2 100w lights and 6 more 55w lights facing forward.

Check engine light came on, found some bad vacuum lines:



Definitely made a difference!! Other than that, now that we live on Yankee Hill trailhead, it's been aired down and disconnected since we moved here so always ready to jump in and head up the mountain. Ready to get this sucker up in the air and some bigger tires, SOMETHING to make some of these rocks seem a little smaller.
20160510_120327 (Small).jpg


Managed to get both the Ex's out on trail a couple times:



No update since June!!?? WELL!! With the General still clicking away despite a few noises, Leila has taken over this truck to wheel and I'm back to wheeling the general. I moved the roof rack and lights back over to the General, and this one got its own brand new roof rack, and for now, a couple of 100w KC daylighters I found on Facebook for $60. The $40 set of 31" tires have done ok, and I'm not sure if it's due to age or what, but we've lost the sidewall in 2 of them now, so it's got one hell of a set of mismatched tires on it, but with the season winding down still looking at getting it lifted, and might even have a line on a used front lift off a Ranger that when combined with springing over the rear will give it 5-6", enough to run 33's for now.

Probably won't be much more to report until the trails start closing down, but I hear we may be in for our first snow soon.


There is a thing called "snow wheeling". It's like regular 4wheeling, but in the snow.

LOL!! I shy away from that a bit these days. After my backwards bobsled impression on South Spring gulch, almost getting really screwed on FS 502 in Rampart, and then the whole mess on Fern Creek with TOR crew.......I don't think I'll be messing with snow much until we're winched, chained, and on bigger tires. If the snow isn't too deep and there's nothing to fall of then maybe? All I know is out of all the runs we've done over the last year, which has been extensive, all of our "scare" stories involve snow. Been lucky so far, so I hate to push my luck. For now I'd be happy with a semi decent set of used 31's for mine. I got 2 ok Mickey Thompson Baja MT's on the back, but they're weathered and getting chunked on the rocks pretty easily, and 2 bald Toyo Open country AT's on the front. This could get interesting living in Georgetown now and all........

To have fun in the snow without breaking or nearly killing yourself, you run those trails that are super easy in the dry. With a bunch of snow on them, it's actually more fun (IMO anyway). I've done those trails in the snow where there's way too much wheel spin involved, and taking multiple runs at something- that's when you break stuff. That's not fun for me.

I hear you, bunce being a good one. As for spinning tires and breaking stuff, this trucks maiden voyage was the one that ended up with everyone stuck on Fern Creek. Once I had chains on the back and got up a head of steam, the guy in front of me called out on the CB, "watch out for the ditch" at about the same time I slammed into it, didn't know it till I walked down to the group later but I had knocked the side skirt trim off and bent the pinch seam right behind the front fender a touch. That fender isn't quite aligned anymore, but it's not noticeable.

I rode with another guy from Front Range back in March? or so on a bunce run. It was a bunch of winching and digging and being cold, tearing up my pricey hunting boots. I'd do it again, but not as often as we go right now.

And at least I knocked off one bucket list trail this year thanks to you and Rich!! Can't wait to try it again with a little more clearance. I really think 33's would have made a huge difference.

We ran this thing hard all season, and actually hadn't even stopped once we got down here to the springs........until the other night that is. This thing had been on trail for almost 5 days straight between the two of us, and while going up Gold Camp before it turns to dirt, there was nasty griding sound and the wheel jerked to the right. Pulled it over, jacked it up and took the hub off. Spindle lock nut was loose and I'm guessing it allowed the hub on that side to grab or something, I'm not sure. But to be safe I took the hub innards out, tightened up the spindle lock nut as best I could with what I had to work with (the damn tire iron!! I carry all the tools and junk in my rig) put it back together, and although the bearings on that side are complaining something fierce now, it made it home with no problems. My 96 is down right now with a shot tcase, so once I get that swapped out (hopefully today) I'll get this one in the garage and tear into it and see just what the hell is going on. I'm already thinking of just doing bearings and seals on both sides, and maybe even new hubs, we'll see.

Join the Elite Explorers for $20 each year.
Elite Explorer members see no advertisements, no banner ads, no double underlined links,.
Add an avatar, upload photo attachments, and more!

That Trail "China Wall" is sponsored by Colorado Four Wheelers. That is a club I am part of here in the Springs. That is a fun trail. I have my 92 on 30" tires and ran that trail. Had a lot of fun there.