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80's Ranger 4x4 for the Trails


Roert42

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That looks like a Bumper Hitch. The link you posted would require a receiver.
 


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MikeG

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Yeah. Those carriers have to go into a square socket. I think a new hitch would be well worth the money spent, not sure I'd trust what you have to tow much, let alone a hitch-haul carrier or the like.
 

eightynine4x4

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Got it. Pardon my ignorance but how does one typical go about this? I’m already cosmetically interested in a chrome rear bumper instead of black. So do I look for a rear bumper/receiver combo that fits an 89 ranger frame, or do I look for a bumper that fits and a hitch that also fits and goes underneath somehow?
 

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Hitch typically fits under bumper and bolts to frame rails. I've seem some 'adapters' that you could bolt to a bumper to get the 'socket' but a new hitch would be the way to go. There are semi-universal ones that can adjust a little to fit the frame rails, if you can't find one specifically for your truck. But odds are someone makes one.

If you have a receiver hitch then you can ignore the state of the bumper. Just buy a 'tongue' to fit the hitch (standard is 2" square I think) and screw your hitch ball to it, in case you need to tow a trailer.

Anyway shouldn't be hard to find a jillion pics on the web. I've had mine so long that there's no telling where it came from.
 

MikeG

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Here's are several that claim to fit a 1989......


Just looked, mine is a Draw-Tite. All I had to do was bolt it to the underside of the frame rails. It does somewhat interfere with getting the spare down, but not impossible. I just can't get to the bolt with the lug wrench, so I keep a spare 3/4" wrench handy in the cab. Don't know if that would be an issue for you.

Hopefully the frame is not rotted out like that bumper!
 

85_Ranger4x4

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That is a crossmember, not the bumper...
 

eightynine4x4

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That is a crossmember, not the bumper...
Yeah I’ve been wondering what that part is actually called though. What should I be looking for? I want to search around for a new part if anyone makes one.
 

85_Ranger4x4

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Probably won’t find a new one. It is a crossmember that holds the frame rails together. Also holds the spare tire carrier in the stowed position.
 

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Now I understand what it is. That hinged piece folds down so you can get the spare. That's what I carry an extra wrench for as I can't really get to that bolt with the lug wrench.

Anyway if you put a receiver hitch on it, the hitch will tie the frame rails together, so I don't know how important that piece is, at this point. Might have to dumpster-dive. Is it bolted or riveted in?
 

85_Ranger4x4

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Probably riveted in, most crossmembers are.
 

MikeG

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Here's what my hitch looks like. If you don't carry a spare under the truck you probably don't care about the clearance.

On my truck that cross piece is riveted in. Doubt it would be much fun to remove...... not sure you could drill the rivets out without removing the bed.
 

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eightynine4x4

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So then there’s pretty good argument for just installing a receiver and not worrying much about the rotting cross member and considering the new receiver to be strong enough. Maybe just patch the hole in crossmembwr in some manner like with “miracle paint” or whatever that stuff is (which I’ve never tried) so that it doesn’t completely flake away.
 

MikeG

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Considering that you'd have both a bumper and a receiver hitch tying the frame rails together, no I wouldn't think that cross member is adding much of anything.
 

eightynine4x4

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This is after a couple rounds of 24hr Citristrip soaks. There was lots of caked up hand paint on this, albeit black and not grey. Will be removing the rest with sander and spraying a layer of self etching primer then black sandable primer. Won’t be bothering with any body work here until a bit later. There’s a hole in lower right and a couple previous small bondo patches here and there. Once this is done I’ll be in the clear in terms of needing to prep things down to raw metal. All other panels will just be sanded for primer. Just had to get it done for the panels that were caked with poorly done diy layers.
51702
 


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