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Off-Road Adventure Buyer's Guide - Explorer Essentials

Currie 9 Inch
James J. Weber | Writer
Posted November 7, 2006

The Bare Necessities for Any Off-road Excursion

Whether you're driving fast or slow, on a jamboree, or just out cruising the trails with a few friends, the following items in this month's buyer's guide are must-haves for your journey into the great unknown. This varied assortment of shocks, wheels, tires, and other off-road-related components provides either comfort, performance, or a sense of security while on the trail.

If you're in the market for a custom-fabricated, bulletproof differential housing for extreme off-roading, then look no further. Containing a 26-inch center, 3-1/4-inch by 0.250-inch-wall DOM tubes, and 9-inch ends with custom-fit rectangular flange-to-flange backbraces, this housing can take anything you can dish out. Some of the special features of the unit include a custom fill cap and drain plug.

Superlift's eXtreme Ring differential cover protects rear differentials from the abuses encountered when off-roading. The protective rings are manufactured for all Ford, Dodge, and Chevrolet/GMC trucks.

Fabricated from hardened steel with heavy-duty welds and extreme hardware, these rings are sure to be the difference between driving home and waiting for a tow.

Brembo GT brake systems have been designed to produce optimum results in every braking situation by utilizing larger calipers and larger two-piece discs to increase the brake torque and thermal capacity often required when towing trailers. This upgrade system is a direct bolt-on replacement to the OE system and does not affect any other components of the vehicle such as the brake booster or master cylinder. Best of all, the system is ABS compatible. The upgrade kits are available for many popular fullsize rigs such as Ford and Chevrolet/GMC.

Floating axles eliminate the axleshafts from having to support the entire weight of the vehicle, as well as hold the wheels onto the vehicle. Warn's full-floater kit provides high-yield-strength axleshafts which allow bulletproof protection from anything that comes into contact with them. Additionally, they also contain the largest spline count possible and have internal splined wheel hubs, thereby eliminating any excess bolts.
The full-floater kits with internal-mount wheel hubs are sold as a two-part number system: a "foundation" kit and choice of drive flanges or hub locks. The lip seals are spring-loaded in the wheel hubs and spindles, while O-ring seals are used on the hub-lock interface to ensure a proper seal.

These two huge 15-inch electric fans move an impressive 5,500 cubic feet of air per minute and are encased in a glass-reinforced, nylon mold-injected shroud. The benefits of having electric fans while off-roading are monumental - quicker warm-up and cool-down times, increased fuel economy and a cooler-running engine are just a few of the benefits. Horsepower gains have also been noted to exceed 17, with rear-wheel torque increases of 20-plus lb-ft.


Currie Enterprises
Brembo North America
Northville, MI 48168
Superlift Suspension Systems
West Monroe, LA 71292
Precision Gear
Suwanee, GA 30024
Weld Wheel Industries
Kansas City, MO 64101
Phoenix, AZ 85050
Warn Industries
Clackamas, OR 97015
Wrangler NW Power Products
Explorer Pro Comp
Eugene, OR 97405
Dept. 4WDSU
Interco Tire Corp.
Rayne, LA 70578-0486
American Outfitters Inc.
Golight Inc.
Gear Vendors Inc.
El Cajon, CA 92020
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