The ability to drive off road on trails and unimproved roads is the single most important factor separating tradition RVs from true Xpedition Vehicles. While four wheel drive is a necessary requirement for off road driving, four wheel drive alone is not enough. Without sufficient ground clearance, robust tires with aggressive tread patterns, a low center of gravity, good articulation and sufficient power, an Xpedition Vehicle won’t go far once it leaves pavement. With a limited slip differential and good ground clearance the base Ford F-550 4X4 is a very capable off road vehicle, but after we perform our EarthRoamer XV-LT conversion it becomes an incredibly capable off road monster.
Tires, Wheels and Ground Clearance
We replace the stock 32 inch diameter, 6 inch wide 10 ply tires with our standard 37 inch diameter 12 inch wide 22 ply tires or our optional 41 inch diameter, 12 inch wide, 22 ply military tires which dramatically increases both traction and ground clearance. We also convert the factory dual rear wheels (DRWs) to single rear wheels (SRWs) while maintaining the factory axle load ratings. Converting to SRWs eliminates the problems DRW vehicles have on trails with tracking poorly and getting flats when rocks become lodged in between the DRWs. Our standard 37 inch tire is mud and snow rated, mounted on a forged aluminum 22.5 inch rim rated at 10,000 pounds, and improves minimum ground clearance by 31% to 10.4 inches. The optional 41 inch military tire is designed to carry very heavy loads even when aired down, is mounted on an aluminum military bead-lock rim and improves minimum ground clearance by 57% to a massive 12.4 inches!
Factory shocks are replaced with King off-road shocks and the factory anti-sway bars are replaced with heavy duty anti-sway all specifically engineered for EarthRoamer. Our optional air rides suspension (required for 41 inch military tires) provides the ability to raise and lower each wheel or axle independently, to improve clearances, and to level the vehicle. The air ride suspension also substantially improves ride quality.
Approach, Departure and Break-over Angles
Approach, departure and break-over angles are substantial with our base conversion, but are further improved with installation of the optional air ride suspension. Upgrading to the optional 41 inch military tires maximizes ground clearance, approach, departure and break-over angles and achieves the maximum in off-road capability. A standard on-board high capacity air compressor makes it easy to air tires back up after airing down on trails.
Lighting and Recovery
Optional high intensity discharge (HID) lights will turn nighttime trails to daylight and optional front and rear winches with synthetic rope and an optional heavy duty recovery kit will get you moving again if you get stuck.