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Jballard81's 1994 super cab 4.0 4x4 Restore


Terrys87

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sgtsandman gave some great advice.

It looks like it already has bondo in it. You will need to sand the rust off as best as possible and then get some rust killer or converter on it. It will come back thru if not killed out.

Working with body filler I do not lie to go over the thickness of a nickel or something similar. Sometimes you have too but when you see it real deep, it will crack out. Body filler sometimes called Bondo meaning the same thing gets a bad name. When used right, it is a great product. Only way of getting a truly level panel at times. I am still not good enough to paint a truck black. White hides flaws.

Temperature determines how much hardener you use. The colder, more hardener. Warmer take less hardener. Basically, I go about the size of a big egg of the filler and add about an inch of hardener. Once it is mixed you really don't have much time to apply it. Maybe 2-3 minutes then it just gets a grainy look to it.

Once I have the surface prepped for filler, I use 80 grit paper then go over it with 180 paper. You will hear the term Featheredge. To me it looks like a smear where the filler and the other level areas or paint/primer start to blend. Once I am done, I like to prime and then wet sand with 320. You can dry sand 320, but I can see when it is wet and helps keep paper clean and last longer in my opinion. This is where you will start seeing Highs and Lows on your repair as well.

If you have a solid edge or somewhat of a defined line, you do not have it "Featheredged". It should feel level without looking at it, but when you run your hand over the repaired area, you should not notice it. It takes time to get the feel of it.

You have to look at different angles to see a dent. I can sometimes see dents but not feel them. Other times feel dents and not see them.

It is hard to explain but you are not going to do any more damage then what is done already. Cover your filler with primer when done. Filler will absorb moisture. Primer will eventually absorb moisture as well and is only a temporary cover.

All of my primer on my truck will need to be sanded off when I go to paint it as it is contaminated with all kinds of things.
 


jballard81

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Quick update. after it rained inside my truck the other day i was getting some weird electrical gremlins. like the door locks would actuate 2-3x whenever i started it. I thought it was surely b/c some rain hit my janky passenger door switches.

so i took those apart and found that the switch contacts were pretty corroded:
PXL_20240424_191243576.jpg

PXL_20240424_191213521.jpg


kind of hard to tell in the pics, but a couple of the pins were turning green. took some high grit sandpaper to the pins, then rolled some into little tubes so that i could run them through the connector side in the doors.

here is the cleaned up pins
PXL_20240424_191829333.jpg


plugged and unplugged them into the connector side on the truck a few times to help with any residual corrosion and tested them out.

i no longer get the locking when i start it, and the passenger door lock works ~90% of the time now. i think the actual lock wire is bent and binding up sometimes in the door card.

passenger power window switch now works perfectly. just need to replace the window regulator since it needs assistance coming back up :LOL:

finally was able to take it for a ride and check the trans fluid level with it hot and idling and there was nothing on the stick. I've been checking, no leaks so it must still be low. I added a bottle of Lucas Trans fix. will drive it around and see if that helps with the overdrive issues I still have. will check fluid levels again and add more ATF as needed later. would be really nice if this fixed overdrive

**Update2** Took it for a ride and let it get up to temp in the neighborhood. the low gear shifts felt much better and there was no dropped gears (i was dropping out of gear when it was cold a couple times). got it into OD range and as soon as the revs drop below 2k and i give it 'maintenance gas' it still shudders. Though, no where near as bad. brought it home and checked the trans fluid and it was off the stick again. added about half a quart and it's on the hash now. need to take it for another drive later.

**Update3** after topping off the trans in the last update I went for another ride and it let me 'maintain' overdrive once, then went back to the shudder. Checked fluid level once home and it was barely on the dipstick. Added maybe a quarter of a quart. Gonna let it cool down then check the vacuum hose going to the pressure regulator on the trans.
 
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jballard81

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Good news, after cleaning up my passenger side window switch, the power window started working better. It goes up and down without issues now!

I thought I had fixed the auto lock issue, but it's still there. When I start the car (not just key to run, it only happens during cranking), the doors will lock on their own... It sounds like the lock is being pushed 3x.

Any ideas on what could be causing that? It started happening after being in the rain last weekend. Kind of vague, I know. Any ideas on what I should check?
 

jballard81

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Finally decided to put my full size spare under the bed. Hit everything with WD-40 and it still fought me all the way. Once out I ran the bolts through the wire wheel and then greased them. Finally, I go to put my spare in and it doesn't fit. Apparently the 265/75/15 is just a hair too wide.

So back in the bed it goes. I guess that really seals the deal when I finally get new tires I think I'm going to get 235s (much cheaper too).

Spent about an hour fiddling with the door alignment. Never would have thought there was that much adjustability in those hinges. It's definitely not perfect but it's way better than before and I don't get wind/rain coming through the top of the door. Good learning experience as well.
 

SenorNoob

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1.5" Front + 4" Rear
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When you loosen bolts on both sides of the hinges, you can move the door like 3 inches in every direction. I can never get seem to get the gaps even AND the door to close smoothly. Always seems to be one or the other.
 

jballard81

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When you loosen bolts on both sides of the hinges, you can move the door like 3 inches in every direction. I can never get seem to get the gaps even AND the door to close smoothly. Always seems to be one or the other.
Like anything, I'm sure there's some artistry to it. I managed to get it so that the top was against the seal and the body lines were "close". I'm sure someone that does it daily would have laughed at my process 😂. It actually closes a tad better than before as well. I hope I have the good fortune to NOT have to adjust a ton more doors in my time :icon_rofl:
 

SenorNoob

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I've used everything you can imagine to shim the bottom of the door up while closed to let me tighten the bolts. Cheap ink pens work pretty well for me.
 

jballard81

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I've used everything you can imagine to shim the bottom of the door up while closed to let me tighten the bolts. Cheap ink pens work pretty well for me.
See, that's good to know! Though I'm curious if you had some other body panel off or I did this completely wrong bc I don't know how I would be able to tighten the hinge to door bolts with it closed...
I only loosened the bolts on the door side of the hinge, used a jack and block of wood to lift the bottom of the door up, adjusted the top hinge until it was pulled in closer to the frame (then lightly snugged the bolts), then I adjusted the bottom hinge until it was pulled out a bit and snugged the bolts.
Then I would check the door and gaps see how wrong it was and try again. And again, and then a little more 😆
 

jballard81

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Since I'm cheap, I got the wrong Xmas tree fasteners. I've been looking for a paint for them and think I found something pretty close
1000006967.jpg

Krylon matte deep gray. Incorrect color on the bottom right. Not perfect, but here's how it looks in the truck
1000006968.jpg


Would be great if it was a shade or so darker, but definitely good enough!
 

rumblecloud

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1-1/2 inch front leveling
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Stock
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My credo
What's the worst that could happen?
Those fasteners are a PIA to get out without breaking them and I haven't found a similar replacement. Whenever I go pickin' i always try to grab some.
 

jballard81

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Boneyard near me got a 92 explorer in today and 96 that appears to have a good Captain's seat if it's still there. The 92 has a lot of odds and ends on the interior that I need and the 96 has an overhead console.

I saw that they want $40+ per headlight assembly... I could buy new aftermarket ones for about that much.

Hopefully I will have better luck than my last visit. Will be early and mid-week so I'm cautiously optimistic.
 

Terrys87

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On your window that needs assistance going up. Sometimes the glass gets bound up in the window seal as it is just a lot of friction. Most big parts store sell a silicone spray that helps the glass slide in the channel. I don't know if I still have some on the shelf at home. If I recall right it comes in an orange can. The parts counter person might be able to tell you what it is. I think it is silicone based but could be wrong on that.

Me personally I always make sure I am doing 55-60 and manually shift into overdrive. Really don't know what is causing your shifting issues. Have your replaced your transmission filter?

If door is sagging really bad, I have put a lock washer in between the door hinge and the cab frame to lift the back of the door. You have changed your door pin bushing?

I am not as familiar with your generation of truck so not sure that is any help for you.
 

jballard81

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On your window that needs assistance going up. Sometimes the glass gets bound up in the window seal as it is just a lot of friction. Most big parts store sell a silicone spray that helps the glass slide in the channel. I don't know if I still have some on the shelf at home. If I recall right it comes in an orange can. The parts counter person might be able to tell you what it is. I think it is silicone based but could be wrong on that.

Me personally I always make sure I am doing 55-60 and manually shift into overdrive. Really don't know what is causing your shifting issues. Have your replaced your transmission filter?

If door is sagging really bad, I have put a lock washer in between the door hinge and the cab frame to lift the back of the door. You have changed your door pin bushing?

I am not as familiar with your generation of truck so not sure that is any help for you.
I will look for the spray for the glass. After I cleaned up the switches on the passenger side (they were pretty corroded), it seems there is more power going to the passenger window and it goes up and down pretty nice now. It still needs to be replaced at some point since the regulator is sloppy and just like you said allows it to bind up some.

Regarding the OD, i've been doing some more road testing. I left OD off and got her up to ~50ish and when it dropped under 2k and when i went to speed up i still got some shudder/vibration. It's no where near as bad as OD though. I need to get underneath her again and check the drive shaft and ujoints. I also still need to check the vacuum regulator and do the band adjustments. Pretty sure there's still some air in it too b/c it's still taking just a smidge more ATF after most drives (i'm checking for leaks too, just in case). i changed the filter on it when i did the shift kit a few weeks ago.

Regarding the door sag, I changed the bushings and pins already. there is still a tiny bit of slop where the bottom bracket wallowed out where the bushing sits a smidge. I think the issue now is my lack of experience in actually properly/adjusting the door fit. I've spent a couple hours on it all said and done, i guess that's not quite enough experience yet!

As always, i appreciate your input!
 

jballard81

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had a little luck at the boneyard today. replacement plastic for my instrument gauges. unfortunately the seats in the 92 explorer were no good, but i remembered to snag some pigtails for the door ajar switches
PXL_20240501_153524930.jpg


I was also hoping to grab the 'key in switch' wire from the 92 but the ignition was drilled out in a very poor manor and they clipped the wire (i snagged it just in case)
PXL_20240501_153501207.jpg


there was a 94 regular cab super base model there as well. it had been VERY well picked over. Incredibly, the ignition cylinder was intact, with the key in it. i pulled it apart and found a perfect condition key in switch sensor!
PXL_20240501_153442281.jpg


i only had about an hour to scrounge and other than the above i snagged some of those large engine bay fuses and a spare headlight switch plunger and bezel

So overall a good trip. my first time to this LKQ, its only ~30min away which is great and they seem to be really good about updating their inventory online so i check every couple of days to see if anything good has shown up.
 

jballard81

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Well look what I found today. Never really noticed it before
1000007045.jpg

I only found it today bc I'm trying to figure out why my red brake warning light won't go off. I'm guessing someone previously did something sketchy with the switch that checks the ebrake.

It's unfortunately in my way as well. I can't for the life of me get a good angle under my side of the dash with the seat in so that will have to come out (again :icon_rofl: )

Is there a remote pairing process for keyless entry for a 94 by any chance?
 

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