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1997 ranger trail truck build! UPDATED She got rolled and I bought it back for $231

PNW Paul

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Sorry to hear, but glad no injuries. Agree that there is too much good stuff on that rig, unfortunately the market for used Rangers in decent condition seems both thin and expensive. . . (at least in my area). So swapping out all the good bits onto another relatively clean rig might not be feasible.

Like the idea of welding on a new cab - - then, exo-cage for protection (and maybe to hide any imperfections).

Best of luck.
 


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bobbywalter

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sawzall?
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it is easier to fix and understand than "her"
Sorry to hear, but glad no injuries. Agree that there is too much good stuff on that rig, unfortunately the market for used Rangers in decent condition seems both thin and expensive. . . (at least in my area). So swapping out all the good bits onto another relatively clean rig might not be feasible.

Like the idea of welding on a new cab - - then, exo-cage for protection (and maybe to hide any imperfections).

Best of luck.

Both of my rigs have been rolled multiple times.

One of us can probably ship you a roof for just over the cost of shipping.

Look up shipping a pallet there from Detroit....if it's something your willing to pay ...when I get the time I will sawzall you off a roof from Detroit.
 

Lefty

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Welcome to the Ranger Station. Nice truck!
 

USCGC130

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1997
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ford
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4.0 V6
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Automatic
2WD / 4WD
4WD
Total Lift
5.5"
Thanks Paul, yea, agreed rangers are going for more than I could have ever imagined. To think I build this ranger because I refused to pay the used Toyota prices and now even rangers are getting up there. I found one in the junk yard that may be usable for the upper cab, it sucks that it has the windshield in it still, so I may try and see if I can get that windshield out and use it as a template for getting everything realigned and then self install a brand new one after its all fitted. I didn't realized how easy it is to remove all the back 3 windows on these trucks, that makes me really happy, so ill go buy some new butyl tape and reseal those while I have them out

Both of my rigs have been rolled multiple times.

One of us can probably ship you a roof for just over the cost of shipping.

Look up shipping a pallet there from Detroit....if it's something your willing to pay ...when I get the time I will sawzall you off a roof from Detroit.
Thank you very much for that offer bobby but kodiak is pretty far out and I think they go by weight and overall size so I bet it would be more than I would want to pay. On a bright note I did find that one at the only junk yard here last time I was here that had a good top and drivers door but I think it was a 98 or 99 ( ill go back and check this week) do you or anyone know if the doors or roof from a later year ranger would fit with my 97? The doors look like they would be a damn close match, and I hope my door panel would fit on one a couple years newer. also I don't care if its got electric windows or crank because honestly I would prefer crank for off-roading. so any help on interchangeability with body parts would be extremely helpful.

not sure if I posted this here last time but my truck came with the original build sheet from 97, ill post if if anyone has any interest. thank you again for all the help, and I should be getting some work done on it soon, I got it back in my garage and out of the weather and the wife is leaving for 2 weeks so ill have lots of time to tinker in the garage and use my new Torin brand porta-power.
Image 3-7-22 at 9.49 AM.jpg tempImage8qIwjo.png
 

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RamblerRyGuy

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3 inch
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33’s
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Graduated one of the top in my class for automotive technology at Sinclair College, Ohio.
Man, sorry to hear about the rollover! Sounds like you have good capability in order to fix it, though. Too bad you're not anywhere near Ohio. There are quite a lot of these rangers down here that are still in pretty good condition.
 

NoRangerDude

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Any progress on fixing the rollover damage? That is a super cool build!
 

USCGC130

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4WD
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5.5"
Well sorry for the delay, its been busy here with work, I had a couple months of studying for a qualification and an advancement test and then had a vacation lol, but in-between all that I have got to make a bit of progress on the truck and finally just drove it out of the neighborhood for the first time. So, I bought a 10 ton hydraulic ram made for straightening frames and car bodies and got the cab pretty straight and only had to make one relief cut and then the driver side pillar I cut out a chunk and re-welded in a filler piece. I also got new spark plugs put in since the other ones were soaked in oil and then I had to burn it all of. I also opted for a Lexan windshield since it was cheaper here and I'm not entirely sure I could have gotten a glass one to fit, but maybe down the road when this one gets all scratched and I'm out of Alaska ill try for a glass one, anyways I got the Lexan cut and riveted in with a few pop rivet and a bunch of silicone sealant. I also stripped the interior to fix the cab and realized I was still getting water inside somehow so I ripped out the rubber floor and just bed lined it ( this will also be nice so I can just pull the floor drain plugs to wash it out or after some stream crossing.)

I sold my roof top tent and made some money on it and plan to buy a nice canvas hot tent for out here, there really isn't a ton of places to use a RTT and the hot tent can come with me on the 4wheelers.
I have a buddy coming up next month and he's bringing some 35x12.5x15's with him that already have some 4.5x5 wheels on them, I really wanted super swampers but they were so expensive and I found a good deal on a set of unused pro comp mud terrains on wheels for a good price and jumped on them. I will be cutting the wheel wells and front bumper to make them fit then go run the trail with my stock gearing and see how it does using low a handful of times and see about re-gearing this winter. If or when I do it'll be 4.88's!
I plan on adding a 8-10K winch, probably a cheaper warn with synthetic line and either cut away some of my stock bumper or make a tube one.
I ordered a Solo motorsports front diff skid plate, its expensive but I don't feel like trying to make one, it should be here next week.
I'm going to junk the crappy aux lights I have up front and go with some KC slimlites (spot beam) and wire them up to my fog light wiring and then give my valance with the fog lights to a buddy who has been really wanting it for his ranger up here.
My wife made me a Frankenstein decal for the rear side window and she'll make me a matching one for the other side soon, but I love the way it turned out! she really nailed when I was going for.

Now I'm going down the path of getting a new title and apparently I have to get it appraised here and then inspected by the DMV, the big hang up I'm going to run into is they want 2 locations to verify the VIN, I still have the one in-front of the steering wheel but not another (I junked the drivers door that had it before I realized they needed 2. So I'm working out a plan right now to located another one somewhere on the truck. Also I'm hoping they don't realize the windshield is Lexan lol because I doubt that is road legal even though its what they make bullet proof glass out of!

Also the doors aren't perfect and definitely not going to be water tight ever again, you can see the gaps in the pictures

The old ranger isn't as pretty as she once once was but it will be a great truck for the main trail here that we use for fishing and hunting. Its going to look bad ass on 35's!
And now for a small photo dump! thank you all for the kind words and the interest. I won't add all the picture as full-size so see below for the others.

tempImagelvFAoK.png
tempImageq2FCFF.png

tempImageSHAAZW.png
 

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DILLARD000

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Wow, cool C130!
And the truck's interesting too.
 

racsan

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supposedly the vin is also stamped into the frame “somewhere”. Ive yet to see that, but then again stuff gets so rusty here. Seems like some gm vehicles have the vin all over the place, like on engine & under hood components. There used to be a metal tag on the front core support area with a bunch of numbers, not sure if it included the vin though or if its even a thing anymore.
 

scotts90ranger

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6
Tire Size
35"
The vin might be on the metal plate thing stapled to the core support... I think it's close to the hood latch.
 

USCGC130

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5.5"
Thank you for the suggested places to look, I did check that tag on the core support but it didn't have the vin just some other codes, I've searched the frame rails too and mine aren't too badly rusted but the markings I have found are not the vin. ill keep looking if not I'll figure something out.
 

Lefty

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Frankentruck! This thread raises a very interesting question. At what point point in restoration, replacement, and repair does your old truck cease to be exactly that and take on a new life of its own? Greek philospher Heraclius dicussed the very same over 2,000 years ago. The idea is known as the Ship of Theseus, a thought experiment about whether an object that has had all of its components replaced remains fundamentally the same.
 

DILLARD000

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Frankentruck! This thread raises a very interesting question. At what point point in restoration, replacement, and repair does your old truck cease to be exactly that and take on a new life of its own? Greek philospher Heraclius dicussed the very same over 2,000 years ago. The idea is known as the Ship of Theseus, a thought experiment about whether an object that has had all of its components replaced remains fundamentally the same.
Same philosophical logic\debate\question could apply to each of us humans,
considering during a lifetime all of our body cells have died & been replaced several times over!
Are we the same person we were as a child?
I tend to believe we are not.
 

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