Radiator support rust.


Chip6789

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So I just joined this forum have been following for years since 2014 when I got this truck its my 1st vehicle I've ever owned and driven. Nothing special a 2000 ford ranger 2wd. Been going over it this winter seeing what all I need done. And just so happen to find rust over my body mount bushings on the radiator support frame. Now the big question. How much would a shop charge to fix this? Can I just weld in new plates over the rust for the time? If I did the work myself do the outer fenders have to come off? And would I be able to bolt the new one on. Not much of a welder. Work provides me with a heated shop and tools so not an issue there. But spring is coming fast and anhydrous season will be starting so could I have some plates welded for the meantime? Any help is appreciated.
 

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85_Ranger4x4

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A body shop will probably charge more than you will want to pay.

Replacement radiator supports are not priced too bad if you want to diy. Strip the nose of the truck, drill out the spotwelds, bolt the new piece in and reinstall grille/lights/etc.
 

Josh B

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Hello Chip :) Welcome to TRS! I'm glad you finally got around to joining, and to checking it out.
You're only 6 years late signing up, that ain't bad at all! I once thought about joining the procrastinators club, and read somewhere they don't accept applications from anyone who applied within a year of hearing about it. Now I'm 40+ years, and still counting :D

Is it your daily driver? Sometimes you need to tear it down to see what all it needs. Twisting bolts is the easy part, figuring everything out can rapidly progress into more unfamiliar territory.
If it's a DD that can become more difficult due to time constraints. If time is not such an issue your progress will be much better. Just tear it down far as you can for half the weekend, take a good look(maybe some photos) and put it back together. Think about it through the week and then give it another go, applying all you learned the time before. You will no doubt become more knowledgeable and progress much farther than the time before each time you tear into it.
You will also save a ton of money and gain confidence as you go.

The best thing I've found for draining a radiator is an old time wash tub, and bought a couple at yard sales and estate sales under $20
 

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I had remembered seeing at least partial coverage on how to replace the core support on a build thread. Doesn't show completely all that needs to be done but it has some info. Take a look at this and it's in post 4.

 

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Where the body mounts bolt to core support. Could I have someone weld a piece of square tubing or something across to hold it and bolt it in place of body bushings? I understand it will probably ride like a camel. But then again it already does.
 

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When there's a will... there's a way

For me it would probably depend on the condition of the rest of the truck. If the rest is worthy... I would probably replace the core support.
 

Chip6789

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Someone made this a custom support. Was thinking about using square tubing and making bottom support bracket with new brackets for the bushings and weld it to the original support. The truck is well in good shape but it's just not a project to exactly take on right now. Because I have nothing else to drive and it means removing both fenders which I see as a disaster for me.
 

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Someone made this a custom support. Was thinking about using square tubing and making bottom support bracket with new brackets for the bushings and weld it to the original support. The truck is well in good shape but it's just not a project to exactly take on right now. Because I have nothing else to drive and it means removing both fenders which I see as a disaster for me.
it will go far beyond removing both fenders. rust never gives us an easy fix.

I would advise against welding something solid between the body and frame. since there needs to be some flex that will force something else to bend & break.
 
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Josh B

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Come to think of it, that might be what broke loose one time on my 87. It came from MN and the body was rusted really bad, which in part I corrected but didn't get near all of it. About 2 or 3 years in while driving 65ish on the freeway it hit a bump and I heard a "CHINGGG" on the highway and the left front body dropped a few inches closer to the pavement. The Ching was that big washer on the bottom hitting the pavement.

When I got home scrounged around the barn/scrap pile and found a piece of 1 1/2" X 1/8(or 3/16) angle about 18 or 20 inches, not sure really, it just happened to be exactly the right length. I also got some long bars and stuff, can't remember exactly how but I pried and lifted it up while pushing the angle in between the left front frame rail and the upper grill frame. It fit perfect, was wedged in tight and never came loose, and from there on it supported my left front truck body
 

Chip6789

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Well I've thought about it all day coming up with different ideas. Putting a patch on it for now to hold the metal together. Going to order a new support. I have a feeling when I take my fenders off they will be pretty rusty so I'm ordering 2 new fenders as well. Along with a front end rebuild kit. Not going to weld the new support on going to find a way to bolt it on. I'm also going to be posting a walkthrough with photos of everything I've done that way if anyone else ever has this problem as well there will be a strong guide to get them through. The truck is already several different colors so the new primed fenders and the whole truck will just be bed lined.
 

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check your rear spring hangers too, thats another common rust-problem area.
 

Chip6789

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Replaced one hanger awhile back. She broke in 2 one day. Other one has been changed considering the rivets are replaced with bolts. Same with my shock mounts as well.
 


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