1988 Ranger Restoration - Keeping a Promise




Rock Auto 5% Discount Code: 29781F0E77DE4B Expires: March 31, 2019

Bird76Mojo

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gains 1.23 HP = win

Still cracks cylinder head during first hot summer..

lol I'm just poking fun at ya..


GB ;)
 

85_Ranger4x4

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Kinda cool two kids have bonded with their fathers over this truck now.
 

PetroleumJunkie412

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gains 1.23 HP = win

Still cracks cylinder head during first hot summer..

lol I'm just poking fun at ya..


GB ;)
Yeah pretty much 😂

Sadly, I like the little thing. It makes me chuckle every time I merge onto a highway. Since putting all the work into it, it sounds like Satan's typewriter arguing with itself inside a tornado. Not "fast" by any measure, but hey, at least I can merge now without waiting for a 30+ second gap in traffic. Wouldn't mind hitting a dyno if the opportunity arises just for the lolz.
 

PetroleumJunkie412

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So, got to learn the hard way that there's a difference in rocker arm pedestals between the 86tm and aftermarket heads.

Pics to follow.

EDIT: For now, I'm still not sure if there is damage, or just a MADDENING lifter noise.

From what I can tell, there is a difference in the way the oil flows up the center pedestal in the 86TM vs. 89TM aftermarket heads.

The solution so far was to pull the rocker arm assemblies, and chamfer and bore the center pedestals so that they line up over the oil passages.

At initial startup, I had a definitive typewriter sound of a new upper end of an engine breaking in. It seems after 500-600 miles that all lifters, bar 2-3 of them have fallen silent, and one on cylinder 5 or 6 has a 'clack' that sounds like I'm doing nothing but damage.

I pulled the valve covers back off and checked valve lash, etc. Everything was/is adjusted to 1 3/4 turns, but it looks like the lift on the exhaust valve on number 5 opens about half of the height of the rest.

Short of pulling the heads back off to change out a lifter, I'm stuck as to what to do. I'm assuming that the noise cannot be good, and that I'm really messing up the motor that I just spent so much time and money on. From what I can tell, oil flow to the upper end is more than it has ever been (flashlight down the oil filler neck on the opposite valve cover - looks like a steady river of flow versus the previous trickle).

Next step is to pull the valve covers again, pull the rods, and check them for curve. I did order a set of refurbished 89TM rocker arm assemblies via ebay to see if that is the solution.

Any tips or advice is greatly appreciated.
 

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alwaysFlOoReD

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Yeah, I have a habit of learning things the hard way too....
 

PetroleumJunkie412

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Well. EBay guy sent 86TM rocker assemblies. Oh well. Not using those.

From what I can tell, the machining work on the pedestals helped, but what helped even more was removing the Mobil 1 oil filter and putting a Motorcraft FL-1A back on and topping the oil off. Called Mobil to complain, and they imidately and without question sent a claim form to report any damage done to the engine. Sounds like they know they have a problem...

Either way, now that ugliness is out of the way, thanks to some help and advice from @alwaysFlOoReD, I have a set of front and rear sway bars installed. Difference with them versus without is subtle. Mostly parking lot stuff feels a little smoother, and cornering on the Turnpike at 70-75 feels less likely to end in rust-fueled flames. Only paid $36 for both of them and a like-new intermediate shaft for the steering, so calling it a win.

Now that a lot of unplanned work is out of the way, the new list of things to get done (in order) is as follows:

1) Rebuild steering box and power steering pump
2) Have 2.5" cat-back exhaust bent and installed. Went with the Flowmaster FlowFX muffler (clearance sale at local surplus store, $30)
3) Replace cab bushings (just wait 'till you see what my rear cab mounts look like. Have been heavily criticized for not scrapping the truck over them). Seal windshield.
4) Take new bed back off. Needle scale frame, rear axle, etc. Inspect and repair poorly welded rear frame repair done by previous owner. Install Explorer leaf springs. Paint and rustproof frame from cab to rear bumper. Install hitch and Smittybilt rear bumper.
5) Finish interior by installing new carpet, black trim, etc. Weld and install seats and tracks from the 2000 Ranger. Find and install a hula girl dash ornament on the dash, and a "Little Trees" pine scented air freshener on rear view mirror (also find and install a rear view mirror).

If I don't drag my feet, that list should be finished by early-mid summer. Just in time to start work on rockers, cab corners, bed rust, etc. Really hoping to have the thing presentable by September for the TRS 20th anniversary trail ride. Would be nice to say "thank you" to a lot of you in person; I would not have been able to get this truck "right" without 'yinz.
 


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