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Hoss Bronco Build - 1972 Modern Wheeler

hossbronco

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Jun 1, 2007
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157
This is the build thread for my 1972 Bronco Explorer Sport. The goal is to make this into a modernized offroading machine. I apologize in advance as progress is going to be slow on this, and I’ll probably worry about the body last, at least where I can.

Here’s what I’m planning. I’ve marked the things I already have with a dash. The rest is either on order or still being considered.

Engine:
427W Stroker (4.125” Bore, 4” Stroke)
Dart SHP Block
Scat 4340 Forged H Beam Rods
Wiseco 2618 Forged Pistons
AFR 205 Heads - 9.5 Compression Ratio
AFR 8019 PAC Hydraulic Roller Springs
Morel Hydraulic Roller Link Bar Lifters
Trick Flow Roller Rocker Arms 1.6
Internally Balanced RPM 4340 Forged Crankshaft
SA Gear Billet Timing Chain with Torrington Bearing
Custom Fordstrokers Billet Cam
-Edelbrock Pro Flo 4 Fuel Injection
MSD Spark Plug Wires
-Ford Performance Oil Pan
-Explorer Serpentine
Powermaster 200 Amp Alternator
-BC Broncos Arctic Air Filter Box
-Spectre Low Profile Plenum
Catch Can
Oil Accumulator
Dual Optima Batteries

Transmission:
-Gen 2 6R80 Transmission
-GPZ Frictions and PBH Steels
-Modified Center Support
-Billet 300M Intermediate Shaft
-Billet 300M Forward Shaft
-Billet Forward Planetary
-Gen 3 Billet One Way Low Reverse Clutch
-Upgraded Pump Bearings
-Superior STL009 Sure-Cool Cooler Flow Control Valve
B&M 7 Qt. Transmission Pan
VX Cable Shifter
-Speed Gems SBF to 6R80 Adapter

Transfer Case:
-Atlas Pro 3.0 Transfer Case (Clocked Horizontal)
-Long Input Shaft
-Short Tailhousing with 300M Output Shaft
-1300 Series Flange Front and Rear
Twin Stick Cable Shifter
Tom Wood’s Driveshafts

Front Axle (Stretched)
Spidertrax 609 4” 4130 Chromoly (69.25” Wide)
Gearworks HP10 3rd Member (3.812” Case)
5.43 US Gear Shot Peened, REM Polished 10” 9310 Ring and Pinion
ARB RD249CE Competition Air Locker
1480 Yoke
40 Spline RCV or CTM Shafts
8 on 6-1/2” Bolt Pattern
Dynatrac Dana 60 Knuckles
DynaLoc 40 Spline Manual Hubs
Artec Ram Mount
Artec Upper Truss

Rear Axle (Stretched):
Spidertrax 609 4” 4130 Chromoly Full Float (69.25” Wide)
Gearworks HP10 3rd Member (3.812” Case)
5.43 US Gear Shot Peened, REM Polished 10” 9310 Ring and Pinion
ARB RD249CE Competition Air Locker
1480 Yoke
40 Spline 300M Spidertrax Shafts
8 on 6-1/2” Unit Bearings
Spidertrax 4130 Rear Truss
Short Upper Truss

Steering:
-PSC Hi Volume Power Steering Pump
-WH 6061T6 Aluminum Remote Reservoir
PSC Hydraulic Assist
4x4x2 Power Steering Conversion
-Ididit Tilt Column Black Powder Coated
-WH Custom Lower Steering Shaft
-WH Mark 9 GT Black Steering Wheel with Leather Wrap

Brakes:
-Wild Horses MOAB Hydroboost System
-Wilwood Master Cylinder
Wilwood or Camberg Cutting Brake
Wilwood 6 Piston Disc Front and Rear
Wilwood Electric Parking Brake

Cooling:
-Ron Davis Radiator
-SPAL 19” Brushless Fan, IP68
-Lingenfelter Fan Controller
-Derale Fanned Transmission Cooler

Exhaust:
Clear Image Automotive 304 SS Ceramic Fenderwell Headers (3/8” Flange, 1 3/4” Primaries, 3” Collectors)
Borla ProXS 304 Stainless Steel Mufflers
3” 304 SS Exhaust

Suspension:
4-Link Front with 16” King Coilovers 2.5 with Remote Reservoir
Dual Triangulated 4-Link Rear with 16” King Coilovers 2.5 with Remote Reservoir
-2” Body Lift
RockJock Antirock Sway Bars (or Hellwig)

Tires and Wheels:
40” Tires TBD
17”x10” Beadlock Wheels

Exterior:
Metallic Pearl Blue Paint
Custom Full Roll Cage (Behind Dash)
Custom Prerunner Bumpers
Custom Sliders (Trimmed Rocker Panels)
-M1A1 Stainless Steel Fuel Tank
-Heavy Duty Wipers
-HID Projectors Halo Black Series Switchback Headlights
Warn Winch
Rear Quarter Panel Guards
-SS Quick Remove Door Hinges
Optional Tube Doors
Quick Remove Tailgate
Hyperformance Tough Windshield
Fiberglass Hood with Raptor Vents
Rampage Soft Top
Mike’s Metal Worx Wing Vent Window Delete

Interior:
Suspension Seats
Retractable Seat Belts with Optional 5 Point Harnesses
BC Broncos Console
Fuel Pump Access Panel

Electronics:
-Painless Performance Wiring Harness
-Custom Dakota Digital HDX-2014 Gauges
Dakota Digital Cruise Control
-Dakota Digital GPS with Remote Antenna and Ambient Air Temperature
-Vintage Air A/C Front and Rear
Dakota Digital Climate Control
-Synchronized Electric Wiper Motors
-iPad Mini 6 Dash
Digital Signal Processor
Backup Camera
Dual Switch Pros SP-9100
Custom Digital Guard Dawg Keyless System
Premium Speakers
Two 12” Subwoofers
CB Radio
GMRS Radio
110V Inverter
-Synchronized Electric Wipers
ARB Air Compressor and Redundant System
Power Locks and Windows
 
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hossbronco

hossbronco

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Here are some early photos.
 

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hossbronco

hossbronco

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Key Decisions:
I initially was planning a Coyote build but wanted more low end torque to push the large tires. I decided on the 427W Stroker instead and am awaiting delivery. Deep down inside I’m intrigued by the idea of installing a supercharged Godzilla, but that will have to wait a few years at the very least.

I originally put money on an Atlas Pro 4 Speed 3.8 transfer case because I wanted to have something in the 80:1 range and something in the 65:1 range, in addition to being suitable for every terrain. I was very excited about the case but at some point realized that the planetary gears would multiply the input torque and potentially overpower the input shaft to the helical gears. At the encouragement of several experienced people I changed to the Atlas Pro 3.0 instead.
 
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ared77

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Sounds impressive! Good luck with your build.

Norm
 
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hossbronco

hossbronco

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Thanks, y’all! I definitely value the input and will certainly make my fair share of mistakes. Nobody will learn more than me on this one, of course. If you think I’m making a mistake somewhere, tell me. I love the discussion and I have no problem being wrong, though I’ll certainly ask questions, and I’m sure there will be times I double down on a bad idea that we can all learn from.

Currently, the engine, transmission, transfer case, and fuel tank are all out. I’m going to pull the frame and have it blasted and painted while I wait for my engine to arrive. It’s been on order since April. Dart only recently started shipping blocks again.
 

JB Fab

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My 2c... carefully calculate where your front driveline will be happy prior to "stretching" your front housing. Atlas clocked flat, 6R80 and a high-pinion front, you going to be threading a needle with your front driveline. Being able to position the the front pinion a couple inches one way or the other might save a whole bunch of hassle once your 3/4 of the way through the build......

Shown here is not flat, low pinion 4R100. Clearancing the tranny pan was necessary .

It complicated things since the front housing was pretty bulky, we had limited room to move it over (Note: cross-member was relocated forward during the next step).
 

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JB Fab

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Oh yeah... The Dart 427, being a tall deck block you are going to have clearance issues with the firewall and possibly the brake MC.
We modified the valve cover for clearance.

We relocated the MC all the way to the fender for additional clearance.

For reference: photo taken with 1.5" body spacers installed
 

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hossbronco

hossbronco

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It looks like you’ve got a pretty nice build there. I’ll be happy when RuffStuff starts making axle housings again.

The Dart block I’m getting is the 351 block bored to 4.125” with a 4” stroke. I don’t anticipate any firewall or MC clearance issues there. The Speed Gems adapter off the back of the engine might be a different issue, but BruiserOutdoors just test fit his with a 2” body lift and it cleared.

Driveshaft clearance is one of my bigger concerns, and the deeper pan and the added thickness of the Speed Gems adapter could only make the problem worse. I’m going to buy the axle tubes a little long so I can test fit and cut where I need to. I’m still on the fence about clocking the Atlas flat, as I’m a little nervous about cutting into the frame and possibly making it weaker there.
 

Yeller

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As for cutting into the frame….. are you tying the cage and rockers to the frame? Thoughtfully done those items very effectively truss the frame to the point you could cut a section almost completely out without compromising anything.
 
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hossbronco

hossbronco

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Good point. Yes, I’m tying the cage and rock sliders to the frame, and I’ll certainly add some steel plating in the area as well. I was a little concerned with the 4-links connecting to the frame in the vicinity, not to mention the support for the transmission and transfer case, but I’m sure I can beef that area up enough to counter those forces. If only I still had access to SOLIDWORKS; I’d love to perform an FMEA on it.
 

JB Fab

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Another note about the Dart block, you cant use any of the extreme-duty aftermarket engine mounts, you will need to use a stock mount that is modified, and you will need to do a bit of clearancing on the block webbing above the mount bolt bosses. really weird that you cant just bolt a stock mount on the block.
 
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hossbronco

hossbronco

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That’s disappointing. I already have a set of the WH Extreme Motor Mounts. I’d be curious to see what modifications I should make to stock mounts.
 
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hossbronco

hossbronco

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This isn’t a great photo, but I made the decision to use TBP’s Heavy Duty Wiper Arms (passenger side in photo). It took a while for the look to grow on me, but the springs are much stronger than other replacements I’ve tried, including the Cherokee wiper conversion. Also, I bought the WH Synchronized Electric Windshield Wiper Kit, and the Cherokee arms didn’t fit (they did fit on the original wiper linkage). I don’t think the driver’s side wiper, also from TBP, fit either, so my options were limited.
 

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DirtDonk

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I'm not exactly excited about the look of my new beam style 15" blades either. Looks kind of our of place on my old skinny arms, but I sure can't argue with how they work! Very happy about that.

That arm is pretty beefy looking. If it can hold any old blade hard against the window, it's a winner.
How long of a blade can you use with it?

paul
 
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hossbronco

hossbronco

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The blades are 12” and I don’t think they could be any longer. The arms are adjustable, but I have to have them all the way in to fit. if they were shorter I could probably get longer blades and better coverage. They’re the same width as the wiper arms on my wife’s former Expedition. The things I like are the springs are very heavy duty, they flip up, I think the blades could be replaced at any auto store, and the set screw makes them easy to remove. The down side to that is that if the set screw backs out the wipers will go flying. Here’s a photo with both installed with the blades. I wouldn’t be surprised if I switched back at some point.
 

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hossbronco

hossbronco

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This discussion has been good. I’m realizing I’m missing out on an additional 6” of wipers with these. The strong spring is nice, but not worth the trade off. I’ll have to figure out how to get other wiper arms to fit the splines on these motors.
 

DirtDonk

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Are the arms adjustable for angle and length? They look to be, but also look like they're sucked in as far as they can go. Maybe like my original attempt the arms were just a bit too long. That's why I opted for the shortest version that Anco sold at the time. The longer ones were just too long.
Not sure which arms are on the '68, but they seem to be at least similar to the short Ancos and work out well.

Here's a pic of how they are currently sitting. I'm still working on the angle of the passenger side. I do like my blades angled down slightly when parked, rather than tucked up flat and tight against the top. But this one is hanging down farther than I like. However it sure does a full sweep!

The driver's side is better but because of the design of the system (custom electric linkage on early style frame) I do not get a full sweep of the driver's side. However, even with the slightly shortened sweep, the visibility is good and the wipe-ability of the blades is excellent!

IMG_8991 sm.jpg
Paul
 

DirtDonk

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Sorry, you did mention adjustable and I just didn't remember. Been meaning to go look at Tom's description too but have not gotten 'roundtoityet.
I keep mentioning "Anco" in my posts, but though that's the brand on my '71, and these look almost identical, I really don't know what they are. But I can take measurements and look underneath at some point for any possible identifying numbers.
My older ones actually had smaller tips that required adapters to fit the standard blades. But these have the normal full width tips that snap right into a plethora of blade choices.
The "stems" or pivot points should be standard late model Bronco because that's the linkage that is in there to take the place of the original vacuum wipers.

I'll keep looking for a receipt for them in the stack to see if that will narrow it down. And I'm still going to experiment with angles and such.

Paul
 

nvrstuk

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Great sounding build Hoss! I am familiar with a lot on your build and Jon was correct on watching out for clearance issues on the rear DS corner of the trans. I offset the center of the pinion closer to the DS frame rail than originally anticipated and it's tight.

The SpeedGems adapter should help you some with frt pinion angle if you're trying to go perfectly flat.

What adapter are you using btw the 6r & Procase?
 
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