'85 Ranger Restomod


85_Ranger4x4

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The stars aligned Friday when I could get my friend to weld my axle up, got it painted shortly therafter.





The only thing sadder than nobody ever being able to see the brakes is that they won't stay that pretty for very long anyway...



Threw on my stock wheels to keep the thing off the floor, hoping to put it in next weekend.



The last time I ordered shocks for the front on Friday at noon I got them delivered that Saturday morning. I did check the FedEx tracker thing and they were on the truck so I ripped off my really old air shocks... my new Skyjackers never came. I figured I could go ahead and fight with the old ones and have that out of the way for the big day, just have the two bolts that would be a cleaned up to deal with. Got to looking closer and they were on the truck for delivery the next business day... :annoyed:

Driving a truck with no rear shocks is kind of fun, you do get some looks as it flops its way down the street.
 
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85_Ranger4x4

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Since my Explorer seats have never really impressed me I have been keeping a look out for something better.

Stumbled apoun an offical Eddie Bauer interior kit...

 

dangerranger83

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Thats one thing on my todo list, find better seats and have seat warmers in them too.
 

85_Ranger4x4

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Thats one thing on my todo list, find better seats and have seat warmers in them too.
I probably won't do seat warmers, but I do like the looks of these seats. It is hard to guage if these are as tall as the Explorer seats but at least the drivers seat will have some adjustment to the recline position.

Seat fitment, one of the standard cabs downfalls... :sad:

Edit: here is a better pic of the seats. The seam is ripped out of the DS one, I don't think it would be a big deal to sew it back up.

 
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85_Ranger4x4

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I got both seats in, they look pretty sharp and all around fit the cab better than the Explorer seats. They do still hit the back window though but they are at a much more comfortable angle. Another thing too, I think originally being power seats the Explorer seats are intended to have the track to tip them back, so they were about square with the floor, the BII seats are tipped back more to start with. It is kind of weird not to have relief for your shoulders in the sides of the seatback though. The fabric is really grabby compared to the Explorer's also.

All things considered I love the seats. :icon_thumby:

I forgot to get a pic with both seats in but this compares them vs the Explorer seats:

 
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Beef52751

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looks good!!!!
 

85_Ranger4x4

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First off, the seats in the truck:



And the 8.8 swap ensues...





Both sides pretty much went like this, which I expected. A long drawn out battle that ended with two pops and a happy dance. :yahoo:



Get outta there :buttkick:







End of Friday.

I got a late start today, I had to take the cat to the vet because he hasn't been feeling good, didn't get going until about 10AM.

Snagged a helper and got the axle closer to the truck, I can take it from here.



Popped the bolts right out, the spring came out, birds were singing the grass was growing... 'twas a beautiful day.



Comparing the two springs, they look pretty close with the only real difference being the thickness of the pack itself.



Go the the otherside... the war was on. (actually I started there and moved on hoping to let the beatings and penetrating oil work at it)

Three hours later, throwing everything at it aside from the torch... which was discussed but I didn't want to with the fuel tank inches from the bolt head I would cut off. I tried a sawzall, it worked great on the outside where I could get directly at the bolt but the inner bushing must be pretty tough stuff, burned through two blades with virtually no headway on the inside. Tried to beat on it with a wide variaty of hammers, break it loose from the backside with a breaker bar... it just twisted in the rubber bushing. I ended up taking an angle grinder, cuting the eye of the spring and went to town with the air chisol. And after three hours of battle:







Finally got both springs in.



Then I make the discovery that the Ruffstuff perches have a 1/2" hole, which is fine if I wasn't running the factory lift block... but they have a 3/4" peg. So then I dig up a drill and a bit to make that work.



Get the axle in place and then discover that because of my oversized bolts the factory F-150 spring plates won't work. Dig out a die grinder to hog out the holes. I do not like how they are now notched two ways leaving little meat for the nut to sit on, I am going to stick it together to get it out tomorrow and get new ones coming. I didn't get a pic but post hole-hoggin the bolts are parallel to each other.







Back on all fours :yahoo:



Netted about 3" of lift, was an inch low in the rear and now is about 2" high. It might settle a little which would be fine, I am good with it either way.

Tomorrow is brakes, torquing the spring plates, shocks and driveshaft...
 
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Beef52751

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looking good, the springs probably won't settle if they were used springs. but you could probably use washers to lift the front when you do your 35 swap to get the front an inch higher
 

85_Ranger4x4

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looking good, the springs probably won't settle if they were used springs. but you could probably use washers to lift the front when you do your 35 swap to get the front an inch higher
Yeah, they were used. The front is sporting brand new Explorer front springs so shimming the front is probably out. I do use the thing for a truck so I imagine they will get beat down a little. I don't mind a rake so it doesn't look quite so bad with something in the back.

I gotta watch it now, because of the greater height of the truck (after 6 years of the height) both times I got in the truck I crammed the key release button between my kneecap and lower leg... that about makes a guy pass out. :bad:

Anyways, got it plumbed and otherwise all put back together today. Pedal is really spongy with the engine on (feels good with it off though) Going to try bleeding it some more tomorrow...
 
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Robert_1967

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I gotta watch it now, because of the greater height of the truck (after 6 years of the height) both times I got in the truck I crammed the key release button between my kneecap and lower leg... that about makes a guy pass out. :bad:
When I first got my 88 Ranger, that was the first thing to go, and it isn't that hard to remove, I don't remember how, but it was real easy to get rid of.




Robert
 

85_Ranger4x4

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When I first got my 88 Ranger, that was the first thing to go, and it isn't that hard to remove, I don't remember how, but it was real easy to get rid of.




Robert
I just have to alter my final approach, I got in it this morning without a problem. :icon_thumby:

The brake pedal was better this morning too, I kinda wonder if the booster is getting weak but it felt very drivable. It always had a weaker pedal than most anyway.
 

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It stops really nice on the street and with the bed full of old suspension stuff and tractor chains it rode very nice... I don't think a new truck could ride any better. I cleaned out the bed tonight since I think the threat of the chains freezing down has passed and I am done with the 7.5 and old springs for the moment, I am going to drive it tomorrow before I knock it in the head for the next project.

There is a steep hill in town with a main street that meets it in the middle, somehow it is always full of sand right there so typically I have to feather the throttle to not just sit there and spin when I turn right to go up the hill. Not a problem anymore :icon_thumby:

Very impressed with the improvements this swap made in ride height/weight capacity, braking, ride and traction. :yahoo:

In the next scene we will be ripping the engine all apart. Changing the cam (if possible with the engine in the truck), FEAD and possibly the heads... if E7 heads won't clear it will be cleaning the E6's to get the compression to a reasonable level to elimenate detonation at higher RPM and engine loads.
 

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Changing the cam is actually very easy and can be done on a few hours. Just remove the rad and anything else in front and all will be straight forward. My question is will your current dizzy work our will you have to change it out? Also while you are there, change the timing set too and front crankshaft seal.

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85_Ranger4x4

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The dizzy should work. A roller cam is a roller cam, I will have to redo the firing order though. The timing set just now has a year of runtime, it should still have a lot of life left in it. The front seal and harmonic balancer is going to be changed with the timing cover since I am going to the Explorer FEAD.

My concern with the cam is that vertical brace in front of the radiator. I trimmed about all of the middle of it out I care too and need what is left. Depending on where the cam sits in the block it could be close to interfering with that.
 
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85_Ranger4x4

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Got the grille off, tranny coolers loose, efan off and ziptied to the core support, radiator out, WP pulley off and alternator off. Ran out of light and couldn't see the DS of the engine (where the PS pump is) so I hung it up for the night.

"only" have the PS pump and bracket, WP, timing cover, carb, intake, dizzy and valve covers to get to the cam switcheroo. Then we jerk off the headers and heads to see what damage we can do there. :yahoo:

Really hoping to go to a puller fan setup if not a mechanical and take out a lot of this messing around to get anywhere.
 


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