So this morning (took the day off) I went back out and we installed the bar between the frame rails for the upper coil over mount and the Z-bar. I didn't take a lot of pictures of the fitment as there was weather moving in and I wanted to be back home before all that craps hits here in a couple more hours. The bar had to be cut to length and then two 3" heavy wall pipe spacers installed such that only 1" stuck out from the bar. We used the drill press and a hole saw to make that happen and my buddy tigged up the side that stuck out and then mig welded the back side and ground that side flat. The top of the coil overs are 1" inboard relative to the lower mount so we had to account for that as well which is where the plumb bob came in handy...again.
Upper coil over mount getting welded in
And the four link is in all be it with the dummy bars in place of the coil overs. We did this so things would not move around while it got welded up and who wants to weld around that stuff anyhow. I worked myself up over this damn install and after it was all said and done my buddy and I looked it over and then he said "We could do this in one day now". I would say two but all he did was weld and make four cuts with the plasma and I did all the measuring, calcs, metal prep, and yeah holy shit this was pretty easy.
The welds on the forward brackets need to be done as well as a couple welds on the coil over bar but that is it. The brackets on the rear end are tack welded but it will come back out and go into a jig and get about 4" cut off one side and 6" off the other and the new ends put on with some pretty tig welds. Here are a few shots of all of it in place, I'm liking it...
Taking a couple more days off in a few weeks and hopefully we can get the front suspension all welded up (spacer tubes, boxing, and the rear LCA mounts) and box the rear frame. Lots of trimming, templates, and welding but it should look pretty sweet when done. From there it will be put the bed on the truck and 100% figure out how much to narrow the rear end. Once that is narrowed then we will have the Moser axles shortened and resplined...could kick myself in the ass for order them as quick as I did as that is costing me $125 to shorten brand new axles and respline them. Live and learn.
From here we moved to the 3" c-notches as the ride height will have the top of the axle tubes 1" from the bottom of the frame and the travel on the suspension is +/- 3". With the notches I have 4" above the axle tube and the top of the rear end will miss the bottom of the bed by 1/4" so bump stops will be mandatory.
Metal prepped and c-notch marked (notice the long dimple on the left there is one on the right as well)
Plasma cutter back in action (you can see the c-notch on top of the frame to the left)
Welding in the c-notch (6.625" x 0.280" pipe that was cut 3-1/4" wide and then split in half all on a band saw)
Back of the c-notch installed
The bottom of the frame in front and back of the c-notch will be cut out as Ford clearanced the frame for the shocks. This was done in a press when the frame was made and we did debate heating it up and just hammering it flat and then thought better of it. Plasma cutter will make short work of it and I will make some templates and transfer those shapes to some plate I bought for this and the boxing work. Should look pretty slick when it is done. I am debating on getting a dimple die set and putting holes in the boxing plate. This would be for looks but also media blasting and getting the powder coat all in there.
Front side with additional welding to fill in some factory dimples
Ground all of that flat and then added some more filler weld and ground that down and then hit it with some 80 grit on a flapper wheel
So this is where we left it yesterday evening after two days of lots of interruptions which included attending two BBq's
So I hacked a rear axle for the truck to get it up on a trailer and out to my buddy's shop to finish the front suspension and then move to the four link. Here are a couple of pictures of the getto axle and I am proud to say it went up on the trailer and back down it with zero issues. We did put it on jack stands for the trip out there and strapped the crap out of it.
Removed the getto axle and then rolled the rear end under it and the driveshaft loop cross member that the front four link brackets will attach to. The ends were removed off the rear end as they are the wrong ones for the Explorer disc brake set up and it will be narrowed. I had to open up the ID of the four link rear brackets that slide on the axle tube as they were 3.00" and the stock axle tubes are 3.09". Metal carbide bit, die grinder, and a few minutes took care of that issue.
If it appears that the drive shaft loop cross member is offset to the passenger side you are correct. The 9" is centered in the truck and the center line of the pinion on it is 15/16" to the passenger side so we moved the loop over 1" to the passenger side. The motor and trans have a factory offset of 3/4" to the passenger side and with the motor mounts I am getting I can correct that to 1". Hopefully I can get a straight shot left to right on the drive shaft so the u-joints are only dealing with the up and down.
So with this setup the top of the drive shaft loop cross member is level with the center line of the rear axle. You need to know the diameter of the tire you are going to run to set this up and also know the ride height of the vehicle. From there the back of the drive shaft loop cross member is 25-3/4" forward of the rear axle center line. Once you have all of this figured out then its level the frame up from front to back and side to side and fire the plasma cutter up. We started with the driver shaft loop cross member first:
Plasma cutter in action
Fitment of cross member
Welded it up and then a couple rounds of welding to fill in the gaps and lots of grinding got this
79-82 Fox Mustangs also had the 200 so that may be a source. Damn this is getting friggin interesting!! Good luck and are you gonna even dare and set a hp goal or is this just a put something together that you know will run but wait for the dyno to reveal the goods???
My guess is that the 83-85/86 cars are all the same size fitting on each side where the 86/87-88 cars are similar to the 87-93 Fox Mustangs. I know there are some differences in the later and early 86 cars but not sure about the brake fittings.
Every time I pull the T-5 out of my Coupe I check the end play on the input shaft and output shaft slip. Buddy of mine warned me about them having a tendency to “loosen” up over time. Only have had to reshim the input once but after seeing that DOA on the table I’m glad I check it. Man that sucks!!!
You should be able to run a 245/40/17 up front with no spacers if they have the correct backspacing and offset on the wheel. If you can find a set used and they are a little off then spacers come in mighty handy. Just remember that our wheels are lug centric meaning the lugs are used to center the wheel. If you get spacers I would suggest you get the hub centric type as that will center the space on the hub of the rear axle or front hub. This is good for balance reasons i.e. keeping tire shake (or what you might assume to be tire shake) down. Also, pay attention to how much spacer you are using, the studs are only so long as you need a minimum thread engagement for safety reasons.
If you just buy Maximum Motorsports SS braided SN95 to Fox front brake lines then they do not need the adapters.
Now with all of that said here is what I have found. The 79-86 Mustangs do not need this adapter as both sides are the same where as the 87-93 Mustangs need it on the passenger side as that fitting got changed. I did not need the fitting on my 83 Bird and used Russell lines. I would have needed it on my 93 Coupe but I chose to use MM's lines so I did not need it. Moral of the story is figure out what your hard line fittings are on the car and plan it out.
Just to clear things up, when you refer to the Maximum Motorsports strut mount bearing are you talking about the Maximum Motorsports caster/camber plates? If so then the answer is any Fox Bird, Cougar, Mustang, or Mercury Capris and the SN95 Mustang struts will work with them.
Word to the wise here, the SN95 struts have one more inch of travel than the Fox units so if the car is lowered run the Fox struts.