no, no, just my experience.. but If it has been said 100 times I'm sure people would hate to read it again (especially the long haulers). 0 dollars, but you do need a welder and basic knowledge of a few tools around the shop.
When I cranked the torsion bars to the height I wanted the truck, it rode like hell... Looking into why this was, I found it was "topping out" on the stock shocks. If you can picture the stock front shock.. It has a lower portion, that is a section of bar stock (approx 3 or 4" where it has to clear the CV joint if I remember correctly). I removed the shock and cut that bar (no where near the cartridge of course) and I added a 3" piece of stock the same size... (basic welding skills can achieve this, it's just a shock, don't be scared.. do be careful of how hot it may get during cutting/welding, mind the temp near the shock cartridge itself.)... So there I was, A truck that rode not bad at all, up where I wanted it, no money spent. I was concerned about the angle of the cv shafts, but that was two years ago so my concerns have long faded.
On to the rear.. Lookin got keep it cheap I was concerned about the cost of blocks+u-bolts+shocks etc.... So, I torched the rivets out of the rear shackle hanger (at the frame), then moved it down on the frame 1 bolt (rivet) hole. This allowed me to bolt it right back up. Now, as much as you may want to leave it, I suggest adding two small gussets on each side off of the bottom of the frame to the area of the shackle where it used to be attached to the frame with a rivet but is now hanging down in the open.... Good news is, stock shocks are plently long enough for this mod. Even better new, dropping only the rear of the leaf keeps the pinion angle in check for 80+ mph Hwy drives (sorry only a 3.0L, can't lie)
Believe me, I jacked this truck up so I could give her the "new" truck big on 31's and I thought I could always buy a lift later... but this has been trouble free and it gets driven Everyday. If anyone is interested more or needs pics, let me know.
P.S. this is why I asked first I knew it would be long winded. L8R
I tried this extending the shock travel and it screws up the lower ball joints in no time and yes the CV's are next the first time you kick it hard in 4WD.
I don't recommend this. It's not worth the money, lol. You'll be sorry -- this type of thing has in fact been done and it's not at all good for anything but looks. Functionally it's a losing proposition and over time you'll realize that. Nothing breaks immediately (except those CV's if you offroad it at all hard...) but wear and eventually fail they will.
John Griggs -- Kennett Square, PA
2002 Ranger 4x4, SAS'd, with too many other mods...
I wouldn't doubt the CV shafts lasting that long. Since the truck has the PVH system there would be no wear on them until 4wd is used.....but what we don't know is how often the 4wd is actually used. The CV shafts on that truck would take far longer to wear out then the CV shafts on newer trucks equipped with the live axle.