Rock crawler, buggy? Looking for guidance!


New Member
Jun 5, 2019
Hey all,

I dont't have a rock crawler yet, but I have a garage, space, potential donor vehicle (which is why i am here), to part things from, and new found time. Im a complete newbie, building his own hobby-ist machine shop. I have been working from home this year and set up shop in my garage so instead of boring lunch breaks and smoke breaks downtown, I could tinker in my garage and projects instead. Got a mig, drill press, pip bender, chop saw, all your other basics (vices,angle grinder). I also have an F350 6.0 diesel that died on me and taking space on my RV pad. Furthermore came across about 300 ft of pipe sched 40 astm 53 grd B, 1.25 x0. 140 i got for extremely good deal. Currently trying to get cash for it or trading it for any running truck. My intentions was to get into mini buggy building + motorcycle engine, but when i had an offer for a running truck my imaginations veered towards a rock crawler / bouncer. Was looking at the Azrockcrawler plans for 4 or 2 seater... I would neeed to get a new engine if i use my f350 as donor, or I would use everything from a running truck. trade. What i would like to know is if an F350 has good parts for a crawler, and if so, what are the vital parts I shouldn't leave out before junking the rest ? Or should i hold off for a trade or stick to mini buggy building ambitions.

What do i want from a crawler?

my desire is to get to explore a lot more of the back country when we go on camping trips with the family. Not driven by competing or tackling the most aggressive trails , just want something that will have no limitations and can be used for recreation., hunting / scouting deep back woods where possible or finding niche awesome camp sites to support our remote hunting / exploring activities. I have toddlers, so still many years away from there own off roading machines, but im looking for a starting point to compliment that lifestyle.

Would love to hear about your ideas or links to any posts you may have read here that align. In meantme will be digging threw threads to see whats out there.

Thanks .


eternal noobie
Staff member
Oct 12, 2010
Toquerville UT
The axles from the F350 are likely desirable for the build, but unfortunately the balance would not be on my list.

It almost sounds like you are trying to build a great trail rig, not a dedicated crawler....IMO, sticking to a common full body frame/body will make that easier, especially when it comes to comfort for the family and keeping it streetable for your travels.

The Jeep LJ is a killer starting platform, with lots of aftermarket, great offroad capabilities, and a good size for a young family. I know a friend is extending the wheelbase on a YJ and planning full links, it should be sweet when done (just started tho)

I've ended up with multiple rigs to cover all the bases....not the cheapest route, but helps keep the buggy dedicated to crawling and the wagon dedicated to exploring and backcountry.