Got all of the steering parts cut out this weekend. Gonna take it to a friend to tig weld. The front dana 44 has Chevy knuckles, so it takes Chevy tie rod ends. The problem is, the gearbox is off a bronco, so I need to get the pitman arm reamed to fit a Chevy tie rod. So I either need to buy the reamer for like 80 bucks or find a shop that will do it. Haven't figured that out yet.
I also got a new tailgate this weekend. The one I had before was bent and hit the bumper when opened. I modified a tailgate off an early 90's ranger to fit my truck. Took a full day to get it to fit right. A lot of cutting, welding and hammering lol. Huge PITA, wouldn't really recommend it, it'd probably be easier to just cut out the Ford logo and weld it into a newer tailgate, but by the time I realized that I was already committed. I think it looks pretty cool though. Will have to get the dent out eventually, but for now its fine
Made an exhaust system today. Didn't have any pre-bent tube so I made bends out of pie cuts. Took a long time. I kept the stock explorer cats, then there's an x-pipe into dual thrush mufflers. Has a good low rumble Edit: should I grind down my ugly welds or not worry about it?
Got the interior somewhat put together. New vinyl floor, new (used) seats, and aftermarket speakers. Still working on the T-case shifter and other little stuff. I think Im gonna leave the back seats out and put in a toolbox or something. I have the back wall off a two door truck, gonna try and adapt it to my needs so I dont have the goofy jack mount back there
Finally got a track bar bend and mocked up! I put it together with the steering and from what I can tell I should have little to no bump steer. Ill have that tig welded at the same time as the steering linkage.
Liberated most of the parts from the explorer. Still need to get a couple things here and there. I found the rod knock, one of the rocker bolts pulled the threads straight out of the head. If anybody knows any good places to go in Dallas to get something like that fixed I would appreciate the info.
Wound up welding the track bar and steering linkage together myself. Track bar is installed, so no more ratchet straps holding my suspension together!
Unfortunately, when I was reaming the pitman arm to fit the chevy tie rods, I went a little too far, so that's a $90 part I'll have to buy again.
Also connected the rear brake lines temporarily. I had to get a new line for the driver side, the 8.8 had a different size fitting on that side. When I install the 9 inch I'll do a prettier job with the lines, I just needed them functional for now.
Got a custom high pressure power steering hose made. Its the same fittings as a 94 explorer on both ends, so I tried using a hose from a 94 but it wasn't a good fit. Went to a hose fast and got one made that works. Now I just need to mount a cooler and return lines.