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1992 Nissan Pathfinder - Completely Different - And Now For Something

Posted in Features on April 1, 2004 Comment (0)
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1992 Nissan Pathfinder - Completely Different - And Now For Something

Like most four-wheel-drive enthusiasts, Darryl Krapf of Quakertown, Pennsylvania, ventured into the sport in a stock vehicle. After a short time of attempting trails in his '92 Nissan Pathfinder, Darryl quickly began the inevitable scramble to increase his vehicle's off-road capability. A set of 31-inch tires came first and was quickly followed by a set of 32s accompanied by a 4-inch suspension lift. It soon became evident, however, that the factory IFS just wasn't going to cut it for tackling trails with his Jeepin' buddies. "I wanted something different. Jeeps are great - just not for me," Darryl offered. Wanting to maintain his unique presence on the trail, Darryl headed to OK4WD in Stewartsville, New Jersey, where his rig went under the knife to begin its transformation.

The crew at OK4WD launched into the straight-axle conversion by first building a bulletproof Dana 44 axle. The unit was stuffed with 4.88 gears and an ARB Air Locker, and affixed with GM disc brakes and a custom high-clearance steering system, also built by OK4WD. After removing the factory IFS setup, the freshly assembled Dana 44 was situated beneath the Nissan and located with custom chrome-moly upper and lower control arms. Following that, 12-inch-travel Doetsch Tech coilover shocks were mounted to custom shock towers to finalize the front suspension configuration.

Moving rearward, Darryl had the crew at OK4WD equip the Nissan's rear axle with a Detroit Locker and a 4.875 gearset from Nissan Motorsport. Skyjacker coil springs were applied to the rear, along with a set of Skyjacker gas-pressurized shocks. All told, the Pathfinder's 10 inches of lift is more than ample for clearing the 35x12.50R15 Goodyear MT/R tires mounted to 15x8-inch Rockcrawlers.

Once OK4WD had completed its magic, Darryl brought his Pathfinder home to complete a bit of his own handiwork. Using 1/4-inch-thick, 6-inch steel channel, Darryl constructed the rear bumper, and then went on to fabricate the rock sliders out of 2x3-inch tube. A Surco roof rack was mounted to the factory roof rack and equipped with a fullsize spare tire, a shovel, and an axe. Darryl further readied the rig for off-road adventures with the addition of a Superwinch electric winch mounted to the front bumper.

With his Pathfinder shaping into the trail-capable 4x4 he'd envisioned, Darryl took a few final steps to ensure that the factory 3.0L V-6 would have enough "get up and go" to push the hefty 35s over the obstacles. A set of black-finish Pacesetter headers was installed by Thompson Nissan in Doylestown, Pennsylvania, along with a custom 2-inch exhaust system.

Out on the trail, Darryl and his '92 SAS Pathfinder definitely turn some heads; even more so when they skip the bypasses and head straight for the extreme obstacles. Although Jeeps may not be for him, Darryl succeeded in building a rig that performs just as well as one.

SPECIFICATIONS
Owner/hometown: Darryl Krapf/
Quakertown,
Pennsylvania
Year/make/model: '92 Nissan Pathfinder
Engine: Nissan 3.0L V-6
Induction: Stock
Transmission: Stock Nissan
Transfer case: Stock Nissan
Frontend: Dana 44, ARB Air Locker
Rearend: Nissan H233B,
Detroit Locker
Ring-and-pinion: 4.88
Suspension: Front: Doetsch Tech
coilover; Rear: Skyjacker
coil spring
Wheels/tires: 15x8-inch Rockcrawler/
35x12.50R15 Goodyear
MT/R

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