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Old 08-25-2004, 05:34 AM   #151 (permalink)
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Those rear Ranchos were upside down their entire lives - doesn't seem to have affected them, so horizontal should be fine. If a steering stabilizer is very stiff, that would probably be the route to go. I'll have to find an offroad shop with a decent selection in stock sometime. Or I could throw all of my old shocks and a couple steering stabilizers and anything else I find around the shop at it. End up looking like a gatling gun with 2.5" barrels shooting silver rods out the front of my suspension link.....

I wonder if I could get them in CHROME? Then I could get my links chromed too, and swap those 4" coils for some 12" or 18" lift coils, and go to the MALL!
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07.5 C&C Ram 3500 - G56, 245 19.5s, 4x2, ARB
98 Dakota on 42s, RIP - then | now | build
95 Ram 2500 on 42s - v10/auto
87 AMC Eagle Wagon

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Old 08-26-2004, 02:32 AM   #152 (permalink)
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Trimmed the skid plate to clear the front driveshaft, roughed out lower coil bucket bases and bases for rear spring hangars. Made half of my new front crossmember and cut out the old one, trimmed the inner fenders to the bottom of the bumper, got 3 of the 4 TREs I need (4th will be in tomorrow/day after), ordered the weld-in threads and jam nuts I need for them from Poison Spyder, almost got the rear on-axle brakes replumbed, but had to break the long side line since it wouldn't come out of the old block, so it'll have entirely new lines.

My tires should be able to be picked up in a couple hours, my rim studs and lug nuts will also be here this afternoon when UPS shows up.

I'll probably spend most of the day on tires, seeing if they clear on the hummer rims as well as I'd like them to (otherwise I can run the rims they're mounted on now, and be a killerdak clone). Hopefully I can pick out some flex lines for the front brakes when I pick up TRE #4, and fab the other half of my front crossmember along with finishing welding in the member mounting plates and grinding down what little remains of the stock crossmember.

I need to figure out what I'm doing for my pitman arm (if it wasn't two cast pieces, I'd definitely combine the axle's original stupidsteer arm with my stock drop pitman: they'd section together *perfectly*, but I don't think I should trust my steering to welded cast.... thoughts? Spawn, I know yours: (because you're right)).

I'd also like some thoughts on the lower valance of the bumper. I'd like to keep the metal bumper and ditch the valance, but can't think of a good treatment for in front of the a/c condenser & core support. Stupid newer vehicles looking like crap without their bumpers..... And loosing the tiny bit of protection I have for my condenser. If I choose to do nothing, I also can't decide whether I want to ditch the valance anyway, or trim it for tire clearance.
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98 Dakota on 42s, RIP - then | now | build
95 Ram 2500 on 42s - v10/auto
87 AMC Eagle Wagon

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Old 08-26-2004, 02:34 AM   #153 (permalink)
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Detail of the rear bar of my new front crossmember. No tube bender, so I notched, bent and re-welded. I really love the result appearance-wise, but *damn* was it ever a lot of work. Accuracy issue in matching one side to the other, too (doesn't show at all 'cause I'm fawking brilliant )
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07.5 C&C Ram 3500 - G56, 245 19.5s, 4x2, ARB
98 Dakota on 42s, RIP - then | now | build
95 Ram 2500 on 42s - v10/auto
87 AMC Eagle Wagon

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Old 08-26-2004, 02:37 AM   #154 (permalink)
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a torch and a sledge shaped these on both sides. p-side has less angle and I did it in one shot. I had to do this side in two takes since one of my tack welds on the front edge broke. I put a jack under it to force the front flat and welded it pretty well, then finished matching the curve.
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07.5 C&C Ram 3500 - G56, 245 19.5s, 4x2, ARB
98 Dakota on 42s, RIP - then | now | build
95 Ram 2500 on 42s - v10/auto
87 AMC Eagle Wagon

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Old 08-26-2004, 02:41 AM   #155 (permalink)
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I'm going to do another tube just like this coming down in front of the core support, again with a rake so hopefully some energy from a frontal attack will be transmitted to the frame instead of just peeling off the tubes.
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07.5 C&C Ram 3500 - G56, 245 19.5s, 4x2, ARB
98 Dakota on 42s, RIP - then | now | build
95 Ram 2500 on 42s - v10/auto
87 AMC Eagle Wagon

Fingerlakes 4x4 | M4wd & Fabrication | Right Coast 4x4 | Rock Modified | Rok-Freekz
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Old 08-26-2004, 02:44 AM   #156 (permalink)
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right side view.

the other tube will probably attach just about in line with the core support, and go forward & down from there. which will require even more grinder time to match the compound angle since I don't have a chopsaw that will do it easily for me.
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07.5 C&C Ram 3500 - G56, 245 19.5s, 4x2, ARB
98 Dakota on 42s, RIP - then | now | build
95 Ram 2500 on 42s - v10/auto
87 AMC Eagle Wagon

Fingerlakes 4x4 | M4wd & Fabrication | Right Coast 4x4 | Rock Modified | Rok-Freekz

Last edited by Mr. Mindless; 08-26-2004 at 02:45 AM. Reason: missed the pic....
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Old 08-26-2004, 02:48 AM   #157 (permalink)
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Last pic for now. Here's the mounted, trimmed skid plate. This reminds me that I haven't test fitted my exhaust versus the crossmember brace yet. I'd be perfectly happy to just throw a turndown right there if it doesn't fit.... ;D
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07.5 C&C Ram 3500 - G56, 245 19.5s, 4x2, ARB
98 Dakota on 42s, RIP - then | now | build
95 Ram 2500 on 42s - v10/auto
87 AMC Eagle Wagon

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Old 08-26-2004, 03:19 AM   #158 (permalink)
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1)I wouldnt trust mig welding cast unless you really know what your doing, I dont know much but i know that if you mig cast you have to get it hot with a torch first I mean really hot and then you lay a really hot wide bead of weld and kind of stitch it back and forth.

2) you would be stupid to use a "stupid steer" set up you will regret it prolly befor you get done with your first test drive just do the cross over righ away.
even if you have to weld a tab to the tierod on the passenger side and run heim joints for at least one end of your drag link. if that doesnt make sense i'll try and find a pic for you.

3)dont take off the valence it will look horifically stupid IMO. just trim the shit out of it for tire clearence. untill you fab up or buy a bumper.

4)A pipe bender would be friggen awsome but you cant have everything

5) not picking on your craftsmanship but welding upside down sucks dont it? no matter what i do I cant make it look good.

6) skid plates are great but it looks like yours if it was hit would drive the front of the plate into the tranny pan which isnt any good. Maybe theres another brackett or something that i cant see but i'd be leary of that.

7) If I were you I'd pull the cross member out and box it in on the bottom so its smooth and you dont have those two edges of the channel hanging down like monster anchors that are ready to hang onto a stump or a rock like a friggen boat anchor

8) make sure to add a small tri angular gusset between the tubes and frame on the new front cross member

9)Exhaust looks like it will clear but if not fuggit exhausts are optional

10) looking good keep up the great work
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Old 08-29-2004, 11:13 PM   #159 (permalink)
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Any updates or did you fall off the planet?
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Old 08-29-2004, 11:26 PM   #160 (permalink)
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Been a while since I posted up.... Took a bit of time off to help people move back into the dorms this weekend, but I was back at it today with some extra help (dad again, and g/f is back in town )

Killer - you have too many thoughts!
1) That's the same thing I've heard, and I don't know what I'm doing. I've also looked at things again and realized that I *do* need some drop in my pitman arm to clear the frame with the stock box location. I think I'll be giving the box too much leverage on the frame and be asking for if I space it away from the frame for clearance, and moving it down isn't much more of an option. I can only reduce drop by about an inch. I need to go looking for Ram pitman arm options, apparently. That and needing to have front brake lines made will (hopefully) be my last hurdles.

2) WTF? never said anything about running stupidsteer. I just made fun of you for running your truck with it at first
I'm copying your crossover design.

5) no. shit. And I've got more yet to do. At least the penetration is still there......

6) Yeah, the front of the plate is flush with the trans pan. It will hit flat surface to flat surface, so loading will be massively spread out if it ever hits anything in front of the crossmember, and the front edge will also be supported at the bell housing. My thought is that I never should manage to stuff anything up behind the front axle like that anyway, but if I do this will do far more good than harm (spreading the load over a flat face of the pan versus trying to punch through it with a point load)

7) Gonna worry about this later.

8) Gonna add bracing when the other toob is put in

9) Loud pipes save lives

10) Thanks a lot, man - and thanks for the thoughts, everybody.
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07.5 C&C Ram 3500 - G56, 245 19.5s, 4x2, ARB
98 Dakota on 42s, RIP - then | now | build
95 Ram 2500 on 42s - v10/auto
87 AMC Eagle Wagon

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Old 08-30-2004, 12:08 AM   #161 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by killerdakota2
Any updates or did you fall off the planet?
Haha good timing

So anyway, I've got my 35" BFG ATs mounted up and aired up. The hummer rims clear really well, and my track width is only up like 1" in back (still just under the truck w/o flares), and getting like 2.5-3" wider in front (out a bit over an inch on each side).

Got the rear frame cleaned off today (that was a bitch. glad my dad ended up doing the grinding ) so I'm ready to fab spring hangars. Going to move the rear axle back an inch or two for a slight improvement in departure, simpler trimming and most importantly, fuel tank clearance with the diff. Might also allow me to just run a hybrid ujoint and do no driveshaft mod until I do an SYE, which would be Really Handy.

Waiting on more weld-in threads for drag link and tie rod, bought stuff to make my panhard adjustable and that will also make it less of a bitch to remove, and I need to pick up gas tomorrow (I've used an entire bottle on the welder, and just about killed the torch's O2) before I can get back to fabbing. I figured out where my ride height is going to be (~28" from the hub to the fender, will allow for about 7-8" of stuff, which is less than I want, but lower height/ CG is more important to me), how much sit-in I'm going to have on those coils (only 2.5" from 0 weight right now), and therefore I can know where my frame side buckets need to be once I get the buckets on the axle. I got those fabbed up today, and their mounts on the axle, but didn't get them on since that's when I ran outta gas.

I gotta be outta here by Labor Day, so I need to figure out my pitman arm ASAP. I also need to figure out who I should get to make my front flex brake lines: nothing in the brake line book at my local parts haunt that was long enough without a hard section in the middle.

Here's the results of the last really pain-in-the-ass job:
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07.5 C&C Ram 3500 - G56, 245 19.5s, 4x2, ARB
98 Dakota on 42s, RIP - then | now | build
95 Ram 2500 on 42s - v10/auto
87 AMC Eagle Wagon

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Old 08-30-2004, 12:12 AM   #162 (permalink)
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When you can't find published spring rates for the springs you bought, here's a really, really stupid way to figure out how much sit-in you'll have, and therefore a way to WAG your way to spring mounting. We'll see how bad my guess is next week when I'm bottoming out on speed bumps in front of Starbuck's.

This is probably the single dumbest thing I've yet done during this project (aside from the axle purchase and the lack of planning) and it actually didn't bite me in the ass.
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07.5 C&C Ram 3500 - G56, 245 19.5s, 4x2, ARB
98 Dakota on 42s, RIP - then | now | build
95 Ram 2500 on 42s - v10/auto
87 AMC Eagle Wagon

Fingerlakes 4x4 | M4wd & Fabrication | Right Coast 4x4 | Rock Modified | Rok-Freekz
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Old 08-30-2004, 12:14 AM   #163 (permalink)
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This is the lack of clearance I have under the frame with my pitman arm. And yeah, it does swing under the frame for full left turns.
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07.5 C&C Ram 3500 - G56, 245 19.5s, 4x2, ARB
98 Dakota on 42s, RIP - then | now | build
95 Ram 2500 on 42s - v10/auto
87 AMC Eagle Wagon

Fingerlakes 4x4 | M4wd & Fabrication | Right Coast 4x4 | Rock Modified | Rok-Freekz
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Old 08-30-2004, 12:15 AM   #164 (permalink)
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This is the 35 stuffed in the untrimmed rear wheel well. I could swing this..... barely
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07.5 C&C Ram 3500 - G56, 245 19.5s, 4x2, ARB
98 Dakota on 42s, RIP - then | now | build
95 Ram 2500 on 42s - v10/auto
87 AMC Eagle Wagon

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Old 08-30-2004, 12:18 AM   #165 (permalink)
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I couldn't swing this quite so easily. It doesn't show well in the pic, but the fuel tank is the reason the pinion is pushed down - it hits the casting on the left side. I could clearance it by removing the brace that it's hitting, but I'd rather push the rear axle back 2" so I can do all my trimming on one side of the fender. It's not like my breakover angle is ever going to be stellar anyway.
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07.5 C&C Ram 3500 - G56, 245 19.5s, 4x2, ARB
98 Dakota on 42s, RIP - then | now | build
95 Ram 2500 on 42s - v10/auto
87 AMC Eagle Wagon

Fingerlakes 4x4 | M4wd & Fabrication | Right Coast 4x4 | Rock Modified | Rok-Freekz
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Old 08-30-2004, 12:22 AM   #166 (permalink)
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Here's my front axle location.
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07.5 C&C Ram 3500 - G56, 245 19.5s, 4x2, ARB
98 Dakota on 42s, RIP - then | now | build
95 Ram 2500 on 42s - v10/auto
87 AMC Eagle Wagon

Fingerlakes 4x4 | M4wd & Fabrication | Right Coast 4x4 | Rock Modified | Rok-Freekz
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Old 08-30-2004, 12:29 AM   #167 (permalink)
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Here's the turning radius I get out of it at full stuff, just outside of rubbing. Nothing to write home about, but that's unsurprising. I plan to tune my steering stops for no street rub at all, and allow non-damaging rub at stuff, so that will help out by probably 5-10&deg. I'm not sure where my rub will be - on the link or on the front of the frame. My current tie rod is quite a ways off on toe since one of the adjust sleeve sides is seized and I can't bring it all the way out. It looks like it could go either way once it's aligned, so I'm rooting for frame rub. Smoother and stronger......
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98 Dakota on 42s, RIP - then | now | build
95 Ram 2500 on 42s - v10/auto
87 AMC Eagle Wagon

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Old 08-30-2004, 12:36 AM   #168 (permalink)
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Finally, here's my coil buckets. Made the spring retainers out of the 1.5x.250 DOM I have, and 4" turned out to be a hair big to fit inside the coils, so I sectioned the 4x.120 HREW I got for this. The large gaps are so a shock mounting bolt will be able to go through and be dealt with, since inside the springs is really the only option I have for shocks. Going to run two pieces of flat stock right across the bucket, and mount the bottom eye that way, then mount a top stud at or slightly above the top of the coil tower (depends on needed travel/length), At the moment, I'm thinking I'll run Doetsch Tech DT3000s, but I've got no firsthand reports on their shocks from anyone I know - they seem to get decent responses though, and they seem pretty reasonably priced at around $130 per set. It will be nice when I know my lengths so I can order up!
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07.5 C&C Ram 3500 - G56, 245 19.5s, 4x2, ARB
98 Dakota on 42s, RIP - then | now | build
95 Ram 2500 on 42s - v10/auto
87 AMC Eagle Wagon

Fingerlakes 4x4 | M4wd & Fabrication | Right Coast 4x4 | Rock Modified | Rok-Freekz
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Old 08-31-2004, 07:49 AM   #169 (permalink)
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Got the coil buckets done. It's sitting on the front axle.

Aside from steering and brakes, in front I still have to deal with shocks, finishing my crossmember, and cleaning up the frame from original crossmember removal.

More after I shower....
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07.5 C&C Ram 3500 - G56, 245 19.5s, 4x2, ARB
98 Dakota on 42s, RIP - then | now | build
95 Ram 2500 on 42s - v10/auto
87 AMC Eagle Wagon

Fingerlakes 4x4 | M4wd & Fabrication | Right Coast 4x4 | Rock Modified | Rok-Freekz
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Old 08-31-2004, 08:55 AM   #170 (permalink)
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Looking good man. Altho it looks like there might be a 'bow' in those coils. Could just be the camera tho. Quick question, how did you choose your coils? Im gonna redo my rear setup, and want to go coils.
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Old 08-31-2004, 09:20 AM   #171 (permalink)
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That's awesome Mike!!
Quite a difference since i rolled in to find your purdy Dak minus a bunch of IFS bits and sitting on Jon's lift.
Seriously good job man, i assume that you'll be hitting the waterfall with it at Daktoberfest?
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Old 08-31-2004, 10:26 AM   #172 (permalink)
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There is some coil bow going on. The upper buckets are a hair narrower than the lowers, and right now the axle is off by about 1.5" to the right (mis-measured when I set up my panhard after making it adjustable last night) so you're seeing the worst of it in that pic. The left coil is dead straight up and down right now, so in running form they'll both be just a hair out at the bottom. Hopefully that won't be an issue. With the center shock, they won't be able to go totally out of whack and kink, so I'm not expecting any issues with that.

As for coil selection, I kinda just picked and prayed. It was stupid, and now I'll find out just how well the logic of "well, an EB ought to have about the same frontend weight as a Dak...." works in the real world. From the getting in/out and bouncing I've done, it feels about right. I'm crossing my fingers


The waterfall? Yeah, I'd hit that!

So will I *ever* be able to roll into your place and see the Scout in pieces? I wanna see it at Daktober. Git 'er done ;-)
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07.5 C&C Ram 3500 - G56, 245 19.5s, 4x2, ARB
98 Dakota on 42s, RIP - then | now | build
95 Ram 2500 on 42s - v10/auto
87 AMC Eagle Wagon

Fingerlakes 4x4 | M4wd & Fabrication | Right Coast 4x4 | Rock Modified | Rok-Freekz
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Old 08-31-2004, 10:30 AM   #173 (permalink)
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Gonna backtrack a little.

So here's the coil bucket on the axle with a coil....
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07.5 C&C Ram 3500 - G56, 245 19.5s, 4x2, ARB
98 Dakota on 42s, RIP - then | now | build
95 Ram 2500 on 42s - v10/auto
87 AMC Eagle Wagon

Fingerlakes 4x4 | M4wd & Fabrication | Right Coast 4x4 | Rock Modified | Rok-Freekz
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Old 08-31-2004, 10:33 AM   #174 (permalink)
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Making these keepers for the top of the coil was a major pain. This is the first revision, they were a bit too short, so I had to make another set. They ate up probably a couple hours of hammering, band sawing and test fitting.
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Michael Maskalans
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Old 08-31-2004, 10:37 AM   #175 (permalink)
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My coil towers. The stamped piece is out of an old F100. It's the closest the yard had to what they promised me, those being the venerable Bronco coil buckets. I have no idea how similar or different these are, nor do I care. I took the tough-to-fab part and put it where it needed to go. Supports started as .25x4 cold rolled flat stock, and it took a LOT of bandsaw time to get them to look like they do.

Should probably gusset them......
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Michael Maskalans
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07.5 C&C Ram 3500 - G56, 245 19.5s, 4x2, ARB
98 Dakota on 42s, RIP - then | now | build
95 Ram 2500 on 42s - v10/auto
87 AMC Eagle Wagon

Fingerlakes 4x4 | M4wd & Fabrication | Right Coast 4x4 | Rock Modified | Rok-Freekz
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