Part II: Refined and Ready
Just like the fictional Hannibal Smith of TV’s A-Team fame, we love it when a plan comes together. With the volume of different projects and vehicle builds we tackle in our line of work, not all of them turn out exactly how we’ve planned. You see the winners and even some of the polished losers here in the mag, but the utter and complete failures? Uh…we usually try to keep those hidden in the shop. So when this 1972 Bronco emerged from Brothers 4x4 in Montclair, California, after months of planning, building, and dialing in, all without a single misstep, we lit a big cigar, said the famous line, and got busy ’wheeling.
We started the build at Brothers 4x4 with a near-stock 1972 Ford Bronco rolling on tired springs and shocks and leaking axles with open differentials. The well-worn suspension components were replaced with a Stage 9 3.5-inch lift system from Tom’s Bronco Parts. We topped the system off with a set of Tom’s Extended Curve Radius Arms and front and rear dual shock mounts. The system cleared way for a set of 35x12.50R15 Pit Bull Rocker LT Radials, which we mounted on a set of 15x8 Black Rock Wheels with 3.5 inches back spacing.
Addressing the axles we looked to Yukon Gear & Axle, which provided everything we needed to rebuild and upgrade the front Dana 44 and rear 9-inch. Yukon provided a set of axle shafts for the rear 9-inch, along with some of Yukon’s quality lockers and gears for the front and rear assemblies. The Dana 44 received the air-operated Yukon Zip locker while the 9-inch got the mechanical Yukon Grizzly Locker for full-time traction.
Once the parts were in place Jim Reel of Reel Drivelines stopped by the shop to take measurements for new front and rear driveshafts. The company built a set of stout ’shafts with 1310 U-joints that allow increased travel to match the new suspension.
As a final step the Brothers 4x4 crew installed a VIAIR Heavy Duty Onboard Air System, which included a 33-percent duty cycle 400C Viair compressor, 2.5-gallon air tank, and all components needed to install basic vehicle-based pneumatics. The Brothers 4x4 crew plumbed the compressor to power the front Yukon Zip Locker and mounted the air tank in the rear cab area where it is easily accessible for airing up tires or operating air tools for on-trail repairs.
We’re very pleased with the transformation of this formerly down-and-out early Bronco. Its street manners are excellent and its trail ability is awesome. Check out the photos and captions for further details on this restoration. We think you’ll find that without a doubt it is refined and ready for just about any adventure we can throw at it.
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