Wonder if anyone has ever tried to use a 4d Explorer frame on a 48 F-1? Reason I am wondering, I have a '96 Explorer that needs the front end rebuilt. Has a new Ford crate 302 with less than 25k on it. This one is AWD, also has an almost new transfer case. According to what I can dig up, wheelbase on F-1 is 114", Explorer is 111.5". Thats pretty close. Figured I would ask on here and see if anyone knows a definate answer before I bother to crawl up under both vehicles and start measuring.
I'm in the process of doing it. Still working on the body. Some use s-10 frames but I want to keep mine FORD. Go to the H.A.M.B. They are dark siders. Thier is a forum-Ford Explorer Ranger that has a guy on there that has photos of his swap. GET ER DONE> Bob
Not sure if the 5.0 Explorer engine is the same as a Mustang GT, but I researched it today on the net and the HP numbers are the same. I intended to put a 302 in it, preferred a hotter motor than 210hp, but I'm broke like everyone else right now and this one is ABPF (already been paid for). My service manager buddy at the Ford place says the hot tip on the power swap is to find a Mark VIII with the 32v Cobra motor and 8.8 rear end. But the real issue here is whether or not the frame will work.
The Explorer rear end already has disc brakes, and the front suspension looks similar to a Mustang II with the upper control arm and lower ball joint design, except the Explorer has torsion bars instead of coil over shocks in the front. Also has a 5 x 4.5" bolt pattern all the way around, would have to change out the 4 bolt hubs. This chassis is also AWD, and I live up on top of a hill with a 1/2 mi long gravel driveway. At any rate, if it would work, it wouldbe great. Hopefully someone else will respond that has done the homework before I have to dig into it. If I have to start measuring, I'll post the results.
I am not sure on your body style, but I am currently doing this swap on a 53 F100. I bought a 97 explorer, 5.0 AWD. Wheel base is correct as is. Actually has better centered wheels then the original chassis. Body mounts were pretty easy to fab. The box will need the new floor installed about 3 inches up, due to the shape of the frame over the rear axle. The transmission cover needs to be reworked due to the larger trans. I could have mounted the body higher to avoid this and also avoid raising the box floor, but I didn't like the look. Too high for me. As I have it, it looked good in the rear & a little high in the front. I replaced the torsion bar keys with after market lowering ones to get the front down 2 inches. I could have just backed out the torsion bar adjuster screws, but that takes tension off the bars and makes a mushy ride. New keys took less than 20 minutes to install the pair and keep the correct tension on the bars while giving a lower stance. I have kept the fuel injection with all emmissions. This was the hardest part due to about 20 hours to make a harness using the original one and combining it with a universal street rod chassis harness, but it all works and I have a working check engine light and diagnostic connector. 1997 is the last year with no anti theft in the PCM. Just one less issue to deal with. Hope some of this helps.
That was exactly the info I was looking for. I have had experience with the torsion bars with Porsches in the past, but adjustments to ride height to those did not result in mushy suspension. This could save me a ton of money since not only do I have the Explorer, I've had it 5 yrs and I know what I have, especially with the new engine. Sounds like the harness may be a challenge, but doable. I've got some serious personal problems going on right now, don't have time to jump into this head first. I will keep the Explorer on the road until I can get ready to take everything apart
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