Plans for toughening the 4x2 a bit - Page 2 - Ranger-Forums - The Ultimate Ford Ranger Resource


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  #26  
Old 03-09-2005
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Not just shackles in the back. I'm putting another inch to inch-and-a-half in blocks back there also. My "custom" blocks are being fabbed by the same guys that did my skid plate. Basically, they are just welding an extension to stock Ford blocks so I still have bump stops. So total increase in rear lift will be 2 inches or so over a stock 4x4, and 2.5 inches over a stock 4x2 (which uses 1/2 inch shorter blocks -- I already put 4x4 blocks in my rear). Plenty of room in the back for 35's I do believe.

The front IS more problematic, true. I'm hoping that with new t-bars maxxed out I can fit them. Look at Ryan's truck. It LOOKS like it's got a spindle lift with the bars maxed out like that.

Well, it's an experiment. I appreciate the cautions, but the only way to tell will be to try it. If it's too impractical, I'll trade the 35's for some 33's somehow and go from there. If I can't do any extreme (or what passes for extreme with a 4x2, lol) offroading for awhile, then so be it. I'll work it out over time. I'll be using this truck for another 2.5 years so I've got some time to play with it!
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  #27  
Old 03-09-2005
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do you have traction bars? cuz you are talking about alot of blocks in the back...

won't you have alot of axle hop? and maybe some slipping...

(i don't know the correct terms, but i know that the excessive amount of blocks on my 77 is what is causing it to break u-joints...)
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  #28  
Old 03-09-2005
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you should keep the 31's on your stock wheels just in case you run into some problems with the 35's until you get it the way you want it... i must say i cant wait to see your truck on 35's
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  #29  
Old 03-09-2005
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35's :O

what about some fiberglass fenders?

Did i see you say something about the 35's and the xj? It will take a lot more to get them under the xj then it will the ranger (not saying you didnt already know that)

I had dreams of 35's John....live it! Do it for all the 4x2's! haha
I think i am stickin to 33's, but who knows, if i had things come together as you are i might run with the 35's. Actually you might as well throw them on there and if it doesnt quite work take the 35's off then and trade for some 33's. No harm in that. Hopefull I get these spindles on soon b/c i know a guy with a yj on 35's. I could "borrow" his wheels/tires and stuff them under the Ranger to see how they are.
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  #30  
Old 03-09-2005
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Okay, I thought you had got those spindles on already. Cool -- yeah get them puppies on there. Then worse comes to worse we'll get together and swap some tires around and see how the spindles are helping the clearance.

More than anything else I've got to get other t-bars on this puppy so I HAVE something to crank.
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  #31  
Old 03-09-2005
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Funny you used the word cool! That's why i havent gotten them on yet...it's too freakin cold! I need more days like Monday on the weekend.
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  #32  
Old 03-09-2005
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I know what you mean.

And yes, Christian, I have traction bars, but the brackets will require modification to fit the wider spacing of the u-bolts. You can't use JD traction bars stock on an FX4 L2, you have to modify the bracket a bit I believe.
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  #33  
Old 03-09-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trevelyn1015
and those at ko's won't get you the same places your stt's have...

just not the greatest offroad..
I vouch for that.... pretty sure i'm a little late to post about this and haven't read the 2nd page yet but heres what my 35" Ko's look like when off road


Video


i switch inbetween 2 and 4 wd threw out the movie
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  #34  
Old 03-09-2005
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John I bet some fiberglass fenders will be your best friend on this project!!

And i am positive you know but; ball joints, expect to be buying them all the damn time with maxed out TBs. I wouldnt max out mine to fit any size tire so Iwould just trade out those 35s for some 33s.

just my opinion though. I have learned from experiance that unless im gonna do something right, I really dont want to do it at all. More problems in the long run just doesnt make it worth it.
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  #35  
Old 03-09-2005
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Well, the preponderance of evidence, as some lawyer might say, is pointing to 33's. I guess when I get these tires I'll put them up for trade. I was out looking at them on the guys truck and I'd say they have 1/2 the tread left on them, maybe 3/8's of an inch or so. Look pretty good. Somebody might want them for some decent 33's.

I don't have ANY money left of anything major like a body or spindle lift or fiberglass. Looks like I might have to aim a bit "lower". Maybe sell the BFG's for whatever I can get and save up the rest for 33" Coopers. I like these tires so much, I'd like to have another set. We'll see.

But I appreciate the input. I went out and did a little test turning my wheel and looking at the clearance and it's pushing it even if I maxed the crank. Sigh. Dreaming of 35's -- oh well...

Actually, though, I don't like the BFG A/T tread -- too close spaced (small voids). The video was what I've seen of the smaller ones on Rangers in mud. They just get packed and don't let it go.
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  #36  
Old 03-09-2005
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John, John, John, thats awesome your "toughing" up the 4x2, you got the right idea with the locker. Its to bad you don't have the money for the spindle lift, that would've been SWEET. 33's are where its at. I don't know how much space the spindle lift guys have with the 33's I know I don't have much at all with my 33's. The front i had to trim the valance and the rear nothing but at full flex there is just enough room for the 33's, thats with rubbing on the fender flare (see picture).

But a locker, lower gears, and some beafy 33's you will go far. Its to bad you can't get some boggers (extra set of tires just for wheeling, like me), I've gone places in 2wd that other trucks had to use 4wd, and thats just with the little torsen in the rear, a locker OH YEA BABY!!! Maybe some swampers i've heard those do great too.

Best of luck John and keep us posted.

So figure with your added shackle and taller block where 35's might fit, you could always lower the bump stop, BUT than you lose much of your flex, which with the mighty IFS we need all the flex we can get.
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  #37  
Old 03-09-2005
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thats my next mod for my blazer 36x14.50 Boggers :) anyway.... good luck with ur project john... but the lockers a good idea but i gave up on makeing my 4x2 off road capable... O and about the tires.. i'm thinking of borrowing a Rubber shaver thing.. and makeing it a little more aggresive... but on the highway i love them but they suck donkey ***** off road.. on my blazer and ranger
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  #38  
Old 03-09-2005
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There was a guy in Tampa, FL who used to post on GE that had 35's with just a t-bar crank... He was able to trim his bumper and fender flares enough so that they would only rub on full u-turns, but he didnt go offroad with them, but I'm sure they wouldve rubbed...

Here's some pics of his truck!

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  #39  
Old 03-09-2005
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^ waste of money and makes no sense...

did i mention that serves no purpose?
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  #40  
Old 03-09-2005
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Yes, if you're not going to offroad it, I agree with you.

Okay, well for sure you've all helped me make up my mind. 33" more agressive tire, at least for the summer, and maybe remount the 31" Coopers for the winter ice and such. So maybe a "Swamper" type big void tread would be nice for the warmer offroading season. I'll see what I can work out in a trade somehow.

So, the 35x12.5x15 BFG A/T KO's with about 1/2 the original tread are on the block to trade for some 33x12.5x15 or 33x10.5x15 tires. Either someone local or something because I really don't want to pay to ship these unless it's a deal I can't refuse, lol.
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  #41  
Old 03-09-2005
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I think the 33's will look better also. I will ask my mechanic if he has any for a good price.... He owns Jand D tires so he has new and used stuff.. That is where my Hoosier spare came from and it was 25 bucks with 50% tread left.
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  #42  
Old 03-09-2005
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Maybe he'd like my 35's in trade for something.
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  #43  
Old 03-09-2005
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I will ask him tommorrow and see what he has or can get...
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  #44  
Old 03-12-2005
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Picked up the axle today.

It was an almost 2 hour drive one way, but it was worth it. The disappointing thing was the brakes. The drums are missing, and I'll need to put shoes on it for general principles and the wheel cylinder fittings were left open and rusted so I'm not going to reuse them.

They are the 10" x 2.5" drums which are a nice upgrade over the 9" x 1.75" drum brakes my truck came with.

I think I'm going to go to the JY for the drums. 91-94 Explorer drums should work (they are the same replacement part number aftermarket as FX4 drums). Shoes are pretty cheap and so are wheel cylinders so I'll get those new.

My overall impression is: WHOO-HOOO! This axle is WAY thicker in both the tubes and the axles themselves. I remember being kind of dismayed about how thin the 28 spline axle shafts are when we had Carl's apart after the breakage. This looks to be a winner.

He threw in an old 8.8 LS (bad) that has a good tone ring for the ABS on it. So I won't have to scavenge that from my truck. Everything else is there and in reasonable shape. The donor vehicle was supposed to be a 2001 FX4. The spring perches and shock mounts appear to be in the proper spot and all.

Can't wait for the build up parts to get here and start putting this thing together!

I will probably have a complete 8.8, 28 spline, 4.10 LS axle for sale before too much time passes, if anyone around here needs one.
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  #45  
Old 03-12-2005
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John, when are you looking to put all of this together?? If you wait a little while I will have the complete rear brakes from my truck available. They should be in good shape except for the adjuster cable on one side and the shoes. I'm getting my oxy-acetalene filled on Monday and will start cutting caliper brackets.

Regarding Carl's carnage, I bet even if his locker was selectable, he'd have had it locked and would have damaged the axle anyhow. And to reiterate, the evidence does not point to a traction issue causing his breakage. It appears that a failure of the brakes on the passenger side caused the carnage on the driver's side, but I've said that before and nobody considers listening. What do I know, I just helped Carl rebuild the damned thing.
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  #46  
Old 03-12-2005
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Yours are smaller than mine, Tom -- okay that sounded weird -- as the brakes I'm using are FX4 brakes: 10" diameter and 2.5" depth on the friction surfaces. Much stronger than the 9" x 1.75" stock drum system.

Thanks anyway though!

Well, Carl still thinks the locker had something to do with it and advised me against an automatic locker. Although, I really didn't want one anyway. I've had a chance to watch them in operation where they suddenly unlock and ratchet in certain offroad situations. Not pleasant.

You could very well be right about Carl's situation though -- but I still don't want an automatic locker on my street driven truck. I want the ability to select and the ECTED gives me almost infinite choice between open, locked, and a continuum of limited slip biases. It's a very attractive concept as it allows you to "tune" your rear traction to the situation -- although learning what works best will be an experience in itself.
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  #47  
Old 03-12-2005
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I don't think so, John. I have the 10x2.5 drums on my truck right now. Remember, the OffRoad package is the precurser to the FX4 and has most of the same stuff.

I'm not saying that the locker didn't have anything to do with it, I'm saying that he didn't suddenly get traction and snap the axle. BTW, that comment wasn't meant for you... The wierd thing about it was that we couldn't figure out why the passenger brakes were destroyed and the axle damage on the driver side. Logically, if the passenger brakes failed and locked up while the wheels were turning, the axle shaft would stop turning and the locker would stop the driver side axle. From there, the momentum of the wheel kept turning and twisted the axle in two. Not from a sudden gain of traction, but the failure of the pass side brakes. It's the only explaination we could come up with that explained the destroyed brakes on the passenger side.
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  #48  
Old 03-12-2005
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Okay, I get it. Well, it's still a strange failure no matter what the explanation, lol!

Tom, I want this built and ready for April 8th, Centralia meet. What's your schedule on your replacements? I'll still get new shoes most likely. What I need "additional" to the shoes I'd buy anyway is wheel cylinders and drums.

I didn't know you had the 31 spline axles and all -- or do you just have teh bigger brakes?
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  #49  
Old 03-12-2005
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Almost forgot, I ran an original lockrite in the rear of my 84 Jimmy with a 7.5" axle and 27 spline shafts on 33" tires for two years and beat the crap out of that thing without ever damaging anything other than tires. That axle is much weaker than the 28 spline 8.8. Automatic lockers are fine and axles can live hapily with them forever if they're driven right and other failures don't interfere.
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  #50  
Old 03-12-2005
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Maybe so. But I still don't want one. There are people who have had different experiences, and the street handling still suffers. I'd rather be able to control it -- maybe I just have "control issues"?...
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