Testing my 33s - round one

After I installed my 2" longer shackles, I was ready to try for bigger tires.. I acquired a used Gateway Buckshot Mudder from my friend, Mike Kelly. Mike runs the Buckshots on his Early Bronco, and had a few "worn-outs" lying around that I could use for a spare tire.. and a test-fit candidate. The Buckshot is roughly 33x10. It's shown in the first few pics mounted on a 15x8 rim. The other 3 tires are my 31x10.50 on 15x8 tires.. two Cooper Discoverer Radial LTs, one BFG Trail TA, and one GoodYear Wrang ler (my then spare tire.. I punctured my other Trail TA the weekend before.. thus 'time for new tires')

The Buckshot mounted on the rear wheel, I jacked the tire up until the Buckshot hit metal. As you can see.. it didn't go up very far!

This is the under-side view.. showing how much distance between the axle tube and factory bump stop was still available. LOTS of room.

The view from the other side of the truck.. my 31x10.50 drooping.

I then proceeded to trim the wheel well. I'll try to get pictures of the "after" well. Basically, the wheel well runs down and comes across horizontally. Below the bottom edge is a "C" channel support. There is also another piece of angle steel th at runs front to back. This has an edge that hangs straight down. Now, along the horizontal edge the wheel well is welded to the C-channel. Find the weld. I then cut up and outwards diagonally (toward the fender lip/outer body) from where the weld was . I cut fairly sharply up and away. I then cut the corner off of the angle-steel. I ground it down at a ~45deg angle. I then beat the angle with a large hammer and folded it over somewhat. I then beat on the horizontal part of the bottom of the wheel well (where it's attached to the C-channel) and did the same thing.. just wailed with my sledge until it was bent as far backwards as I could get it. My goal was to keep the tire from catching on the vertical and sharp edges, and instead provided a some what "smoother" edge for the tire to catch on. Once this was done, I re-tested my clearance. Notice that this time I had to put the jack under the tire itself to get enough travel out of the floor jack to stuff the tire.

Another shot of the bump stop clearance for comparison, now that it's been trimmed

Rear 3/4 view showing how much farther the tire has drooped, now that the 33 on the other side stuffs so much farther.

More of the 31 drooping

Another shot of the 33 stuffed. Notice the opposite rear tire is just barely off the ground.. the 33 doesn't stuff any farther than this!

Here, the 33" Buckshot is drooped. Notice the front edge of the tire is almost UNDER the rear of the rocker/front of the wheel well.

Of course, here's the 31x10.50 stuffed into the other side. I think I actually ran out of jack and couldn't bring the tire up any father!

A shot of the bump stops with the 31 in there.. and it's not even rubbing yet! The shock was disconnected just to check and see if it was limiting up or down travel at all. It wasn't.

The 31 back on. "at-rest" ride height.

The 33 mounted on the front. Like the huge dent I put in the fender?

This was as much up-travel as I could get. The stock anti-sway bar was attached and I got 1/2" of up and a 1/2" of down travel measured at the bump stops. The dent is from a concrete pillar at the parking garage at work - I was excited to be test-fi tting the 33, and turned too sharp.. WHAM into a pillar. d'oh!

This has nothing to do with the 33s.. but it's a shot of my yellow '72 finally home!

Another shot of my '72

One more shot of my first Scout II.

The next day - my Scout with it's brand new (sub 10 miles) 33x12.50 Cooper Discoverer Radial STT (Super Traction Tread). Later this night I even washed the truck and polished the chrome wheels. That lasted one day.. this was Thursday night.. Friday night we were deep in mud with a broken front hub!

Another shot of my Scout with it's new shoes!

The old 31x10.50 next to the new 33x12.50.

Stuffing the new STT and checking where it hits

Drooping the new STT and seeing how that side of things work..

It took quite a while to get the old fender off thanks to broken spot welds and those stupid "strap steel with threaded hole" fasteners IH used all over.. after this photo, I lay the fender on the grass and wailed on it with a rubber mallet, beating i t back into shape and reinstalling. Something satisfying about using a hammer to FIX something..

My handiwork

Good as new! Well.. almost

There's the first batch of tests on the 33s.. more to come!

OK, here's a few more pics.

I drove out to Davis Gulch to test the articulation of the 33s and where they rubbed..