For those curious how 4wd E's do in sand....

Escape to the great outdoors! Towing-related conversations are welcome here as well!

Re: For those curious how 4wd E's do in sand....

Postby fugitive - October 14th, 2016, 8:06 pm

The skids may fit just fine out of the box, I just couldn't sort out the rear mount. :wall:


I found the factory pics from FTS. Just an appetizer till I find my own install pics. Cheers, TR

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Re: For those curious how 4wd E's do in sand....

Postby fugitive - October 14th, 2016, 10:02 pm

Very good to know it fits (mostly)! The main reason I want the skid plate, is to aid in keeping water out of my alternator. Or at least keep the majority of it off. I be very greatful if you could let me know how well it keeps water out! All my buddies go up to big falls a lot and there are 7 creek crossings to go through if i remember correctly. I definitely need a solution for the poorly thought out alternator mounting point.


There are vent slots in the skids, so some water will get through. If you drive at the proper speed to create a bow wave in front of the escape, the skid may help the effect and reduce water in the lower engine bay.

Years ago I read about a bunch of Escape's having alternator failures after playing off road. The guys with the failures were driving in muddy/soupy water. The guys that stayed out of the nasty stuff were OK. I personally haven't heard of failures due to driving through clear water, but it is a possible problem.

Last winter I drove around Lockwood Valley (Los Padres NF) after a big storm. There were many roads where the runoff water is channeled right over the road. I drove through a half dozen of these water crossings 6-8" deep with no ill effects. The water was fairly clear. Without the skids there would have been a fair amount of water splashed into the lower engine bay. The skids probably reduced this (no way to know without a video cam under the hood). Hope that helps.

TR
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Re: For those curious how 4wd E's do in sand....

Postby fugitive - October 14th, 2016, 10:18 pm

Explanation of the problem I had with installing the rear of the second skid.

Pic of the kit:

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The steel plate (#3) has two holes. Rear of skid (#5) has two holes. The plate bolts to the skid.

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This leaves nothing to bolt the plate and skid to the chassis. The steel plate should provide some additional stiffness to the rear of the skid, but I just didn't see anyway to attach it to the chassis. The pic shows the plate bolted to the skid, but does not show any attachment to the chassis. The back of the skid just hangs in the air.

I gave up and welded two nuts on the chassis. Drill two new holes in the skid and it bolts right up.

I'll probably put the plate back on the rear of the skid just to help reinforce it.

Cheers, TR
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Re: For those curious how 4wd E's do in sand....

Postby AusEscape - October 15th, 2016, 7:52 am

Thanks for the pics. I am hoping to build some and this helps.
I like the idea of the support bars that works well with the ideas I have.
Hope to do it soon and try to document.
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Re: For those curious how 4wd E's do in sand....

Postby fugitive - October 15th, 2016, 1:31 pm

AusEscape wrote:Thanks for the pics. I am hoping to build some and this helps.
I like the idea of the support bars that works well with the ideas I have.
Hope to do it soon and try to document.


AE, You're welcome.

The support bars add additional strength and resilience to the light weight aluminum skids. I consider it a brilliant solution and seems to be unique. All the skids I have seen for other solutions on small rigs (Subaru etc) seem to be just an aluminum skid bolted up to the chassis.

Best of luck with your homebrew skid project. I look forward to your progress.

Cheers, TR
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Re: For those curious how 4wd E's do in sand....

Postby fugitive - October 15th, 2016, 2:28 pm

The FTS pics were the best regarding the installation. (They had the advantage of putting the Escape on a lift).

Here are a few that will show my mod to the install and the finished product.

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This is the driver side, viewed looking towards the rear of the vehicle.
The observant among you will notice 2 nuts welded to the chassis. When I was crawling around under my Escape I picked what seemed the best location for the nut. Rather than marking it ahead of time, I trusted my feeble memory. Upon arriving at the welding shop, they pop the Escape up on a lift and asked me to point to the location. Well, there are three holes there and standing under the lift (as opposed to laying the opposite way under my Escape), I confidently pointed to the wrong hole. Arriving home, I smugly bolted up the two skids only to discover the freshly welded nuts lay beyond the end of the skid plate.

:wall: :rant: :bang: :cuss: :censor: (a simple Doh! just didn't seem enough).

I went back down to the welding shop with a fresh box of donuts, and an apology. They welded up two more nuts (no charge).

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This is the same setup on the passenger side (looking to the rear). The bolt is in the nut, in the correct location. (closest to the front)

I arrived back home and everything bolted up nicely. I am pleased.

2 pics of the completed skid plate install.

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The small front air dam almost perfectly covers the front of the skid for a stealth look. Nobody knows you are a lean, mean, off-road machine!
If you want to show off your skid, just remove the air dam.

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This is a look from down under (not to be confused with Australia).

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Here is the "fugitive" in action with freshly mounted skids, exploring the great outdoors.

Hope this is helpful to those looking to skidify their Escapes.

Cheers, TR
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Re: For those curious how 4wd E's do in sand....

Postby fugitive - October 15th, 2016, 5:38 pm

This thread has wandered far from the original topic of playing in sand. I will start a new thread on skid plates to continue the discussion there. TR
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Re: For those curious how 4wd E's do in sand....

Postby AusEscape - October 15th, 2016, 6:07 pm

Yes it has. It happens. Lol


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Re: For those curious how 4wd E's do in sand....

Postby AusEscape - October 19th, 2016, 6:20 am

AmericanPatriot76 wrote:
AusEscape wrote:Sounds cool.
What size are your wheels and tyres?
Did you lower the tyre pressure?
What mod plans or dreams do you have?


Thank you sir! My wheels are 16's and my tires are 235/65. I dropped the pressure down to about 18-19 PSI. I have a decent list. Im getting some off road Cree led pods installed sometime next week, im going up to 245/75/r16 A/T's after I put on the 1.75" OME lift, I plan on getting the skid plate and rear adjustable control arms from FTS4x4, aFe power intake, magnaflow exhaust, Jet performance module, I already got my KYB struts put on and Im going to install my Gabriel gas shocks soon. That's about the extent of it right now.


Another sand question for you.
When in soft/dry sand what gear do you drive in?
Is yours an auto?
Cheers.
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Re: For those curious how 4wd E's do in sand....

Postby AmericanPatriot76 - October 19th, 2016, 3:14 pm

AusEscape wrote:
AmericanPatriot76 wrote:
AusEscape wrote:Sounds cool.
What size are your wheels and tyres?
Did you lower the tyre pressure?
What mod plans or dreams do you have?


Thank you sir! My wheels are 16's and my tires are 235/65. I dropped the pressure down to about 18-19 PSI. I have a decent list. Im getting some off road Cree led pods installed sometime next week, im going up to 245/75/r16 A/T's after I put on the 1.75" OME lift, I plan on getting the skid plate and rear adjustable control arms from FTS4x4, aFe power intake, magnaflow exhaust, Jet performance module, I already got my KYB struts put on and Im going to install my Gabriel gas shocks soon. That's about the extent of it right now.


Another sand question for you.
When in soft/dry sand what gear do you drive in?
Is yours an auto?
Cheers.


Mine is an auto. I left it in second gear pretty much the whole time, as we weren't going all that fast and keeping it in a lower gear meant more power on tap when needed, so you won't get stuck. I am also going to correct myself on my tires size. I have 235/70's not 65's. Dont think it makes much of a difference on sand though.
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