I recently acquired a 79 F250 4x4 with a 400, C6, NP205 and decent running gear for basically free. I have been toying with the idea of building a Truggy for playing around and I was wondering if you guys would have any inputs on one.
Basically I don't know much about the running gear except it's all stock. Dana 44 front/ 60 rear. Haven't counted the splines on the rear yet, but I'm hoping for 35 spline units. The body is in pretty good shape, but it's been a work truck all of it's life and I don't really feel like starting over on another project like that again. I know it will probably make some rust-belters mad, but I was looking at taking the body off and selling it and using the chassis as a basis for a Truggy. I know that the leaf springs will be too stiff, so I'm thinking that some Wrangler packs would be a lot better. Basically I want to tube frame the thing to get rid of weight and have something fairly light and indestructable from an objectively reasonable standpoint.
I was thinking that using the stock frame would be a lot easier than making one from scratch and it also makes it a lot easier to title for later use on the street. ( I want it to be legal so I can enter local rides. Most of them require street licensed rigs in any sort of competition.) I have enough extra parts to build 2 of these things, so I'm not worried about drivetrain issues.
Any ideas that you've tried and didn't work. If you've always wanted to build one of these and never have, I would welcome ideas. I've built plenty of cars and trucks, but never a tube frame thing like this.
My ideas for use include. Mild rock-crawling. Sand Dunes. Mud running when I can find wet dirt. ( I live in Vegas so mostly I see rocks and dry lake-beds.) I would also like to keep the weight down under 3K lbs so it will be nimble and quick in case I want to take it to the drags once in awhile. (That's another reason it has to be street legal.)
I'm aware that fenders and frame heights will have to be watched. I'm looking at max 35-38" tires for speed reasons. I want to keep the stock 400 for awhile, then I have the stuff to put in FE or 460 later on. I would like to partially enclose the drivers compartment with .040 aluminum. Something a little thicker for the fire-wall in case of fire or rod's coming out at me. I've got a few ideas about air-conditioning, but that's something for much later on in the game. I would like to keep the 3/4 ton running gear for the big brakes as much as the strength. A dana 60 isn't an option right now since I don't think I will need one and for $$$ reasons. Also, I don't usually break parts since I hate buying replacements at normal cost.
Here's your chance to have input on my ride. I will take any and all suggestions. I might even be willing to part with the cab and front clip for other parts if you want to trade something. The bed is being saved for my other truck right now.
This sounds like a good project you have here . That said and since you are tubing it i would move things like the rab and battery to behind the driver in the bed, that is if it has something of the sorts. I would also go with a fuel cell of sorts of at least ditch all tanks but the one over the rear axle, these little things will help greatly with weight dist.
Just my .02 cents .
__________________ 82' Flareside 90' C350 Centurion aka 4 door 1 ton bronco 96' Ranger: lotsa home fab stuff, 750+hp 400 ford, linked with king coilovers
good luck getting the weight below 3k my ranger mounted on a cut down 77 F150 frame, and totally gutted weighs 3620 no matter how you slice it these things are pretty heavy, and getting below 3000 is a really good trick that I haven't been able to acomplishh yet. Personally I would shoot for under 4k
RIP Steve Bricks. FTE will not be the same.
Will be forever glad to have had the privilege to shake your hand and BS in person.
I had a 79 that had 35 spline shafts one time. I'm hoping that I get lucky again. If not then I guess I'll have to buy a couple of $20 spares from pickapart. I like the full floating aspect and I'm going to run an auto tranny and keep the tires under 38 so I should have a little room for fun. I'd rather have something better, but for the price I'll deal with what I have for the time being.
Thanks about the RAD I forgot about that part. Still drawing thing up till I get time and money. I'm shooting for completion in Mar-Apr next year so I can go run MOAB and have a little fun.
That's most likely what I'll wind up doing since I can usually get 10.25's for less than 200 buck drum to drum. But right now I'm just in the planning stage. I figure if I spend a couple of months with a tape measure and doing some research it will work better than my past projects of jumping in with both feet before I even have the blueprints drawn out.
I don't know why more people don't use 10.25's. I just picked one up for $25 with posi and 3.55 gears! They have 35 spline shafts, which is great. The only weak spot is on pre 93 sterlings which have a shorter pinion spline, which I am told can eventually wear causing pinion to ring gear contact trouble. 93 up use a longer pinion with a revised yoke. I am thinking about building one for my '78 since I now have a couple of them.
'46 Ford 1.5 ton
'92 F-250 4x4 Diesel XLT
"78 F-250 4x4 Dual Dana 60's
'02 Ford Focus SVT
Junkyards here want 275-450 depending on the yard, but I know lots of places that I can get them for a lot less. I've also been known to trade my junk for their stuff and get a discount or straight trade sometimes.
I paid $50 for my last sterling with 4:10's and L/S. It's got some use, but it sure works better than my old one that had been abused and ran full of water by the previous owner.
You might consider using a Ranger cab instead of just a cage, it will save you huge amounts of time by not having to fabricate seat mounts, pedals, steering column, etc, etc. Granted, it not as cool looking but it will also keep some of the debris thrown off of the tires off of you. I used to run a cab truck but now am rebuilding with a cage job (just because it makes me look like a hard-core ****) you can see how mine looks under construction currently in my gallery. I am also trying to have mine done by spring for the possibility of going to Moab, East Coast Bronco Roundups Free-For-All, or Howiepalooza.
"It's not that I'm lazy,,,, It's that I just dont care."
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