Joined: Sat Oct 21st, 2017
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|Eddie Money wrote:
You are adding 4WD to a 2WD if I'm following right. Which is interesting on it's own.
There seems to be a trend in offroading to disconnect or remove anti sway bars to allow more flex. Dodge even has a electric unit now.
But you are stiffening your frame. Does the 2WD frame need to be beefed up to accept the 4WD? Any concerns of over stiffening? I know stiffer suspension helps handling on roads. Im sure you drive in to town but I had the impression you drove on private roads a majority of the time. Probably arent a lot rock crawling to do in the desert so this probably isn't an issue for you but I was curious.
Sorry missed this - on the 93-97 with TTB (4x) and TIB (2wd) the two frames are incompatible due the forged front engine X-member having a arch or cutout if you will meant for the front differential. Non existent in the 2WD chassis. So the cab, bed w/Flip-pac (for now), will be transferred to the 4x4 frame I have now to work with. Then the 2WD frame will become host to the bed from the 94' Ranger (purple one if you're following at all my build thread by chance) and well thats a story and build page all its own.
So the video I added IS the 4x4 frame and demonstrate how much flex is in it stock. I do a fair share of city driving for now living in Vegas but I try to find every excuse I can to get out of town on a backroad and find something new. I did come across the very first Zinc mine in Nevada in the middle of nowhere on a mountain side at 1am in the morning.. lol And the desert provides everything from rock crawling to rock shelf's, silty sands and dunes, mountainous terrain, rock gardens, water crossings, snow, washes and flash floods, to drivers from Yemen to the Yucatan!
I'll start by saying that I have absolutely NO experience with modding Ranger frames (we call them chassis in the UK :))
But, the fact Ford went to boxed frames and then unibody suggests to me that the boxing didn't really solve the problem and looking at that frame flexing I would say that boxing the side channels won't make a big difference as the cross members are offering little resistance to the movement.
Is it possible to add some extra, deeper cross members to tie the two sides together better?
I would also be inclined to strengthen the side C sections by bolting in matching C sections that fit inside the existing sides if that is possible, since that will help take the compression / tension loads in the horizontal sections and avoid issues with welds introducing weak spots.
If you can get it, Dinitrol is an excellent box section anti rust treatment as it is very liquid and creeps into joints - I have cut open a rocker treated from new with Dinitrol and it was totally rust free after 30 years of British weather!
I typically call them chassis as well but for some odd reason not enough people recognize such a term and so I've succumbed to the less than $8 word and been slinging around the $3 version.. Should of seen the looks on people when I was into the import scene and called it a bonnet and a boot.. utter confusion except by my 2 Irish and some German buddies!
The way it was explained to me back in the day (95') by engineers is exactly the arguments on why a C channel is "better" than a Boxed frame. They wanted the chassis to flex of all things to say. I know.. staggering right?! Boxing the frame as you and 410Customs stated is only a portion of the equation but it or the hard-facing is certainly needed. Creating whats termed as a "Boxed Ladder" frame is exactly what you're describing tho. X-members fitted into the frame the same size as the frame section its in itself. The stamped steel outrigging style just isn't enough and so you will see some great improvements here as well.
Back in the day, some friends from across the pond on the Pacific side of things got me away from building full cages in our FWD higher powered grocery go getters. See in Japan, if you're seen/caught with modifications to your engine, chassis, or suspension, you are heavily fined and many times your car is impounded. In fact in Japan, once the vehicle reaches 32k miles. You have 3 choices. You can buy another new car. You can re-cert the engine for I think it was an additional 18k miles Or you can replace the engine with a new reman engine. They don't have old or even "older" cars there except for historical or NON-opp collector status.
So what these young guys were doing was throwing their cars on rotisseries and filling the chassis's with liquid "Delrin" and as it cured and solidified it strengthened the chassis immensely and was virtually undetectable. We, the performance company I owned then, had some good results. Sad a divorce hacked that dream and company into matchsticks.
I agree X members are worth more then boxing.
A combination of both is what we are after here.
It is pretty easy to add crossmembers where needed
A full belly pan skid plate that attached rigid to the frame would also help a great deal, as does a full A B and C pillar cage that attaches rigid to the frame.
I have been twisting my Bronco II up off road for 25 years, the frame bends and twists quite a bit. I have solid engine and urethane trans mount as well as urethane body mounts. No cracks yet, but I am sure after 350K miles the frame has probably seen better days. I would love to have a bare frame to build off of.
(that is why we were pulling the 92 sport frame so my friend Brett can build a frame off wheeler)
I would box much of it and add 3 additional x members or ladders to attach the two rails together. I would also go with solid body mounts, solid belly pan and solid mounted engine/cab/bed cage. That should be plenty overkill for a RBV.
I have not run sway bars on my BII for about 7 years now, soft springs and very stiff shocks make the suspension work
You are onto some of my design efforts for chassis bracing and skid plates for the 3rd Gen rangers because of the TIB/TTB setups and the lack of rigidness. May be worthy of some IED testing.. lol
Everything else mentioned is the basic idea, however, the cage if it was to get one will mostly be a external exoskeleton style one.
As for the sway bars.. Im actually adding a rear one because of the 290lb penalty of the Flip-Pac the lateral forces are felt and I think the rear sway will help. However, much like the front one. Both will be upgraded units and have manual disconnects for some assistance with the articulation aspects when needed. But for on road manners, I prefer them.
Thankfully I have a lot of help in this project and with its proposed use in a booth at the 2020 Expo West show.. As everything pulls a string and ties into other things.. all of the strings will be pulled closed at one time near the end and then dialing it in will be a notable effort. Lots of goals to be met.
All great insights and comments guys.. thanks
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