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Ranger front end swap

r1ch999999

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So I didn't find anything on this, and my hopes aren't high, but here's my story. My kid wants a OBS Ford, and the Gen II Ranger fits that bill. However, my wife insists on dual airbags for his first car. I googled but didn't find any at all that looks like I could swap out the 89ish Ranger front end style onto a 95+ Ranger. Is there anything out there that I missed?
 


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dvdswan

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Vehicle Year
1991
Make / Model
Ranger XLT 2WD
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3.0 V6
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Automatic
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My credo
Keep your mind like an umbrella, it only works if its open... Continually learning.
If you have awesome body work skills then yes. It is NOT a bolt on project. These are 2 different body styles.

FYI, airbags are a great safety feature but they haven't been around forever. Seatbelts save live too. Plus, front airbags only work if the contact is IIRC 10-15* angle on the front end to a head on collision. edit: if the sensor is not activated i.e. a hit on the frame the airbags may not go off as well.

Get the 89-92 Ranger and let your kid learn some automotive skills. Mechanical skills go far past just working on vehicles.
 

superj

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ranger edge
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Engine Size
V6 of power
Transmission
Manual
2WD / 4WD
2WD
Total Lift
none
Total Drop
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Tire Size
235s
My credo
Grew up in the 70s, 80s, and 90s
what is obs? old body style?

dual airbags? is that yall's first kid?

airbags sound cool to the insurance company but the seat belt is way better. just make sure he wears his seat belt all the time and drives with his eyes moving all the time and he will be good with just the steering wheel one, or no airbag, because he will never need it (the chance of an airbag deploying accident is so slight)

my oldest was following to close and hit a lady when she suddenly braked in his 86 bmw 325e a few years back. he didn't eat the steering wheel because he sat far enough back from it that the seatbelt caught him. just make sure your kid isn't sitting with the steering wheel under his chin, also
 

r1ch999999

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Yeah, I’m ok with no airbags, his mom isn’t. We’ve been in some horror accidents the last few years, all distracted drivers who hit us, so she’s looking for the safest thing out there.


Looks like he’s getting a 95+ if it’s a Ranger. Thanks for the replies.
 

don4331

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Air bags are not supposed to replace seat belts, they are supposed to compliment them.
They are supposed to prevent Dale Earnhardt type deaths - where in a severe accident, the seatbelt holds the body safely in position, but the neck is snapped by the head moving forward (hence the HANS device now in NASCAR, F1, etc).​

The newer Rangers are wider and have a larger front crumple zone (it went from 28" in Gen 1 to 34" in Gen III), so you would need some body skills to adapt the panels. '96-7 Rangers have the better front brakes (Just saying if mom has safety concerns). I think they got the side intrusion bars, too (but that might be '98).

Lastly, air bags weren't really designed to last 20+ years - think of leaving a box of ammunition out on the dash for 20 years - shooting it could be...exciting.
Much as I have enjoyed the older Rangers, mine started in ones less than 15 years old. They still get the privilege of driving a manual and wrenching on them; they just happen to have a few of the newer safety features.​
 

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