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Discussion Starter #1
I got to thinking. I own a 99 Dakota cab plus, wheel base is 131"

So, How much problem when 4-wheelin is TOO much wheelbase?

As it is, my new suspension would be like 35" from ground up to bottom of frame. That's pretty high, but needs to be that to keep the tires from rubbing on the back of the front fender wells while flexing.

So, I got to thinking...I could cut the front of the fender/bumber with no problem, as nothing is in the way there. This would be awesome for my approach angle and would make it so the ground to bottom of frame rail at only like 26-29". Lower center of gravity would be a big plus.

I can't cut the rear part of the fender well, as it would end up cutting into the door and cutting off the body mounts. So that's not really an option.

Doing this would change my wheelbase to like 136-138" Is that bad? Approach angle would be alot better, but wheelbase will be much larger.

I'm not worried about what it looks like. I'll fab a custom made bumber and build fiberglass fender flares that would be painted to match the trucks paint. Would actually look kinda factory when done.

I would also need to cut the rear fender wells also and fab up fiberglass flares for those also, but that's not a prob either. If I move that axle forward, it would mess with my payload if I ever carry anything in the bed, not to mention, my aproach angle from backing up would be fubarred.

So, any suggestions? Would a slightly longer wheelbase then what I have now be too bad of a problem?

Pro..........Better approach angle
Pro..........Lower Center of Gravity
Pro..........No need for a step ladder
Pro..........I can still run over Civics!

Con.........Longer wheelbase (bad for tight spots/corners
Con.........Less ground clearance

Seems like the pros out weigh the cons, but, how bout some input from some experienced wheelers who have driven both large rigs and, say, Jeeps with a short wheelbase.
 

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100 - 120 is normal. 131 is pretty long if you don't have 40+ tires. I think it's wise to match approach/departature angle to breakover angle. how do you figure lower COG is a result of a long wheel base? the longer it is, the higher it needs to be to go over the same ledge. longer will get you high centered on civics.

I'd move the front axle forward, and the back axle forward even more. then chop down the back, to match the approach angle. You could still keep it looking stock, if you're good with sheet metal. Don't fool yourself about maintaining the utility of a wheeling rig. The longer you try to haul stuff, the longer you won't have the rig that works well.
 

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Man and I thought mine was long at 114"!!!! Really I like a little longer wheelbase but youre gettin into the BUS wheelbase range at 136-138......I would forsee the breakover angle being terrible.I think if you go this route you need to be runnin a 40+ tire for sure....now this is all relevant to crawling rocks so if you just climb hills or go muddin thenI dont see a problem.To each their own I guess........Good luck and post some pics when youre done.
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Not going to chop the back end.

So what you're saying is leave it the way it is at the stock 131" wheelbase and just lift it enough to clear the 39.5" tires when flexing?

Or, move the front wheels forward, and go with 49" tires.
 

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im sporting 132", and its just too damn long to manuever through tight canyon trails. my turning radius makes semi truck drivers laugh, and my drive shafts hate me. welded front and rear with drive flanges certainly wont help your turning radius either.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I'll be running a dana 60 up front and 14-bolt rear with ARB's in both.

I've read reports on spools or welded diffs. Very bad idea. I'd definately have to do a full hydraulic system for steering and buy a new truck and trailer to tow it, as there is no way I'd drive it on asphalt that way.
 

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I have a spool in the front of my XJ. the thing about asphalt and turning is, I unlock the hubs when I drive on road. Really, the effort required to steer the tires is the only problem I have. I'm at 115" with full width axles, and I'd have more fun if it were shorter. Lately I've been kicking around the idea of bobbing the back. I did a little work in Photoshop, and it would look sweet. I'm worried about camping gear storage though. You are worried about going to Home Depot, even though you are putting in a 60 and 14bt. It's going to end up being just for wheeling pretty soon anyway. I just want to save you a lot of work.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Well, the truck also pulls my trailer for my bikes and jet ski. I like having the space in the back to throw all the gear in.

With the wider wheelbase, I'm guessing that it won't be too top heavy, so shouldn't be so bad. Guess I'll keep the frame at 35".

The other problem is, right now it's got a Rough country 5.5" with 35" tires. You shoulda seen my mom trying to get in and out of my truck. I'll have to video tape her doing it when it's 13" taller. LOL

With Coil-overs in the rear, I probably can't carry heavy weight back there anyway. That poses another problem. The spring rate. Do I make them heavier poundage for planning on carryin some plywood back there, or not. I'm sure if I do, it will definately screw up the 4-wheelin.
 

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you could work with a 4 foot bed. :) Taller isn't the answer. My mom doesn't like my toys. Really, travel is the problem with carrying a load. Really if you wanted to, you could change around the stop for the dual rate and work around load capacity. Higher rate springs will just move the ride height up, and you will top out all the time. pulling a trailer will be better with a shorter bed. it will be super easy to back up if the hitch is right by the axle. The front won't be lifted by the weight either. think of a goose neck, or semi.
 

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I'd cut to fit IMO. don't get so set on hitting a certain # of lift inches. just make it work for what you want to do with it.

I'm running 37" MTRs on my '00 ZR2 and we kept the CoG as low as possible. my WB is about 124" and IMO is just a tad too long. my turning radius is actually pretty good (compared to when it was IFS it's way better) and I manage it through some really tight spots without problems.

my 37s don't rub at all and it has a buttload of wheel travel. I could go 38s, but anything bigger I'd have to cut more or go a little taller.

JMO
 

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2LoudDodge said:
Well, the truck also pulls my trailer for my bikes and jet ski. I like having the space in the back to throw all the gear in.

The other problem is, right now it's got a Rough country 5.5" with 35" tires. You shoulda seen my mom trying to get in and out of my truck. I'll have to video tape her doing it when it's 13" taller. LOL

With Coil-overs in the rear, I probably can't carry heavy weight back there anyway. That poses another problem. The spring rate. Do I make them heavier poundage for planning on carryin some plywood back there, or not. I'm sure if I do, it will definately screw up the 4-wheelin.
I smell a Mall Poser...Coil-overs...Plywood...13" taller... WTF! :barf:
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Mall Poser? Dude, I hate the mall. Only women go there to ummm, buy shoes!

I'll be wheeling this, but not as hardcore as probably some of you. I like to keep my rig nice! =P

That ZR2 probably has abit more area you can cut out. Dodge doesn't give us that luxury. The Fender wheel well is like 1" away from the body mount and door. It really sucks.

I'll work on some pics and try and post up some drawings, maybe with those, I can get some solid answers as you all will be able to see what I'm thinking.
 

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Geargoyle said:
I smell a Mall Poser...Coil-overs...Plywood...13" taller... WTF! :barf:
I concur.

I'll be wheeling this, but not as hardcore as probably some of you. I like to keep my rig nice!
This isn't the place for you then.

Hit up www.pavementsucks.com , they seem to be into your sort of nonsense.

This needs to be moved to Newbie. It isn't a Tuesday. :flipoff2: Gawd this place is going soft.
 

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This thread is all over the place.
What size tires are you planning to run?

You want to stretch the WB a little, so you can run bigger tires, with the same, or less lift?

If you're not really wheeling it, you can run 140" with 31's, what difference does it make.

If you are wheeling it, you'd know 131" is already pretty long with 35's.

If your not wheeling it, why ask the question? :confused:
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Yes, I will be wheeling it.

39.5" will be tire size. I was thinking of moving front axle forward so the ride height wasn't so much. But, sounds like the ride height is better then the longer wheelbase.

I came here asking for advice and to get information on this. Not to get flamed and be called a mall poser. If you can't give advise and help me out, then please keep your 'mall poser' comments to yourself. It's not cool to make fun of someone asking for help. If I didn't ask for help, and went and did things and fouled it up, then make fun of me. But I'm trying to do things the correct way.
 

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39s with stock axles?
 

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Discussion Starter #19
chris408 said:
39s with stock axles?
Hehe, umm, you kiddin? I think I'd be able to drive it like 5ft before I broke something.

No, 78 Ford Dana 60 w/35spine outers and 14 bolt 10.5" in rear.

I'm gonna do this right, or not do it at all. IFS sucks, out with the old, in with the...umm, Older I guess.

I'll just keep the wheelbase at 131" and just raise it up to clear the tires. With a wider wheel track, Guess I'll be okay with it that tall. Plus, 39.5" tires won't be so bad, my approach angle will still be better then what I have now.
 

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2LoudDodge said:
Yes, I will be wheeling it.

39.5" will be tire size. I was thinking of moving front axle forward so the ride height wasn't so much. But, sounds like the ride height is better then the longer wheelbase.

Not necessarily.

Is your frame 35" right now with 35's? (first post is a little hard to follow).

Was the "add 13" more lift" part a joke, or serious?

35's to 39.5's = 2.25" higher ride height + 10.75" more lift = 13"? :confused:

I guess your kidding, but if not, I wouldn't lift anything that high to fit 40's.




Too long of a WB sucks, but too tall of a rig sucks more.

Have you cut the back of the ft fenders as much as possible already (I know there's not much fender there before you hit the door)?

I'd pick option C (like someone already mentioned), bump the ft axle forward, pull the rear forward (maybe even use a quad cab bed, though those have alot of overhang), and try to keep the wheelbase in the 125-130" range.

You can deal with some of the overhang by keeping the rear a little higher than the front, and angle cutting as much as possible.

You want to still use the truck for carrying stuff, but if it's 12 feet tall, it's gonna suck to use it, AND flop on it's side offroad.
 
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