Chassis Plans

Frequently Asked Questions
 

   
 
 

I am going to try and lump all the information that pertains to all of the chassis plans I offer in one spot. Some of this will be a repeat of what is on the chassis plans page. there are also nearly a hundred build up pages that cover everything I did and purchased over the course of my builds. Please read them over before e-mailing questions.

 

    Question - What is included in the chassis plans?

    Answer - Hardcopy prints on 11 x 17 paper that details the required tubes to build the base chassis including cut lengths, bend start points and angles. All the plans are broken into stages, the first being the lower section and moving up from there.  This video should give you a good idea of what you get.  It covers what is included in the second stage of the Project Hellraiser Pickup chassis and includes the bending and mocking up of the belt line tubes from the plans.  The plans basically give you an envelope that can hold a drive train and is easily customizable to add you own style o the final outcome. I do not provide suspension mount points due to the sheer numbers of ways of doing it, however you can copy exactly what I have is you happen to run the same drive train by looking thru the above builds as well as the suspension links listed below.

 Question - Do the plans also detail the suspension mounting points?

    Answer - They do not, however I have detailed everything I have done on my builds including detailed suspension numbers in my build up pages. I do not cover the suspension mounting because there are too many ways to do it.  In my tech section I have write ups covering the basics to a link suspension, suspension links, and 4 link numbers.  The 4 link numbers link gives you exact numbers for my suspension mounting points so you can duplicate what I did with any sort of tab or misalignment joint you want.

     Question - I don't use PayPal, how can I use my credit/debit card to pay?

    Answer - You still use the shopping cart buttons but when the PayPal checkout screen appears click on the underlined "continue" in the lower left corner of the screen where it says:

    Question - How much tubing is required?

    Answer - For costing purposes I used approximately 8 sticks of 1.625 x .120 DOM, and 2 sticks of the following: 1.50 x .095 and 1.50 x .120 for the main chassis bracing. To save money you can get away with using HREW for any piece of tubing that does not contact rocks.   

    Question - Can I use a different diameter tubing or bender die?

    Answer - Yes.  While the plans show 1.625 OD tubing due to it being readily available here in Phoenix you can certainly use a different diameter tubing.  I include a chart with the plans that give you a correction factor for different bend radii but as you'll see the differences are so small as to be outside the tolerances most people can achieve when cutting and bending tube.  The same goes for the OD, it is a very minor difference and most likely less than the kind of tolerances a coping saw gives you. FWIW I used 1.50 OD tubing for my Hellraiser 2 project and did no adjustments despite my plans calling for 1.625 OD tubing.  

    Question - What are the differences in the chassis plans?

    Answer - The sub-chassis on all my designs is very similar with only minor changes.

 BMP 3, BMP 2 and Hellraiser 4 were all designed with a front mounted radiator in mind. Structurally the A & B pillars are offset from the outer tubing on the lower chassis to create a nerf bar. BMP 2 has the longest nose of the 3 to accommodate longer drive trains. It is very easy to make adjustments to any of these 3 chassis's and I point out where you can make changes on the blueprints.

The Hellraiser 2 Pickup, Buggy and Hellraiser 3 chassis's were all designed around a rear mounted radiator so if you look thru my HR3 buildup thread it should be pretty easy to see how you get better visibility and a sleeker front end over my previous designs.  The trade off is more complex plumbing and heat management with the radiator out back. These 3 chassis designs also have the A & B pillars flush with the lower chassis which gives you roughly 3 more inches of width in the passenger compartment over my first 3 designs.

The bottom line is you could make the changes yourself to convert any set of my plans to the others without too much difficulty or you can pick one closer to what you want and make minor tweaks from there.

    Question - How much time is required to build a turnkey rock crawler from your plans?

    Answer - It took me over 615 hours of constant work (every weekend and after work) over the course of 4 months.

    Question - How much does it cost to build a crawler?

    Answer - Material prices vary by region so you will need to get a quote for the amount of tubing listed above.  I did a complete budget of my original build here which includes all the little stuff I bought. Some of that information is a bit dated so I have started another costing page as I build up my Project Hellraiser 2 chassis.

    Question - Can I buy a pre-built chassis from you?

    Answer - I do not build chassis's to keep some in stock.  In fact up until now I have not done any fabrication work outside of my rig mainly due to time constraints.  I may consider building a bare chassis, contact me for more details at sales@azrockcrawler.com.. 

 

Ford 4.6L Vs 302 V8

    Question - What drive trains fit?

    Answer - Pretty much anything can be made to fit.  4 cylinders are no problem and most 60 degree V6's are actually more compact than a lot of the inline 4's currently out there (Suzuki 1.3/1.6, Toyota 2.4/2.7l, etc).  About the only engines that would give me pause are 90 degree V8's like a Ford 5.4L or 4.6L since they are so darn wide (see picture above). That said It is easy to make adjustments to the chassis so if you did have a blown 5.4L and wanted it in the chassis you could as long as you were willing to put up with a wider front end.  The Chevy V8's (250, LT1, LSx) are an easy fit. Inline 6's present another problem - length.  You'd have to stretch the nose of each chassis a few inches (assuming a front mounted radiator) except for the BMP 2 seater which was designed with a Jeep 4.0l drive train in mind.

LS1 shown

If you go with a rear mounted radiator you should be able to fit just about anything.

Short Block Chevy w/ TH350 Shown in the Hellraiser 2 Seater Chassis (Buggy or Pickup version)

For reference my 3.8L/904/D300 is roughly 54" long (pulleys to rear output), 28" Tall (oil pan to top of motor) and 22" wide at the valve covers.

6.0l LS2 and Atlas Shown

    Question - What wheelbase can I run with this chassis?

Hellraiser 2 Chassis with 100" Wheelbase and 37" Tires

    Answer - Your wheelbase will be determined by your drive train.  For example any motor in front of a Toyota 5 speed with dual transfer cases will be at least 12 inches longer than my current V6/Auto/Dana 300 combo.  Pretty much any chassis with an automatic and a single transfer case behind a "V" motor could run a 100-112+" wheelbase. The dual transfer cases behind a 5 speed make for a long drive train and could push the wheelbase from 105" and up depending on how far forward you push the motor and what kind of rear driveshaft you are running.  The best thing to do is mock up your drive train and drive shafts and see what sort of angles you end up with. For reference when I had my inline 4/Toyota 5 speed/dual Toy cases I had a 29-34" long rear CV driveshaft, 10.

                One other thing to keep in mind with wheelbases under 105" is that the chassis will have to sit higher to allow for adequate clearance between the front axle and engine.  This added height can be offset with smaller tires.

    Question - How much does chassis "X" weigh?

    Answer - That depends a lot on what you install into the chassis but I can provide a few references:

    3 Seater with Suzuki 1.6/Toyota 5 Speed/Dual Toyota Cases, Toyota axles, 37's, steel bead locks - 2800lbs.  This was about 100lbs lighter than my tubed out Suzuki Samurai with a single 8:1 transfer case.

    3 Seater with S/C 3.8l V6/TF904/Dana 300, D60 Front & Rear, 14 Bolt Rear, 42" tires, aluminum bead locks - 3800lbs    (motor is about 450lbs)

       

4 Seater with S/C 3.8l V6/TF904/Dana 300, D60 Front, 14 Bolt Rear, 40" tires, aluminum bead locks, aluminum links - 3844lbs

    The bare chassis weight is anywhere from 250-350lbs depending on the bracing, material thicknesses, etc.

    Question - What kind of tools will I need.

    Answer - Check out the chassis fabrication write up here.