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Stepside 1st gen

Jim Oaks

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That's a pretty cool and rare truck. I didn't read the whole thread and links, so sorry if this was discussed......

Even if it didn't come off of the Ford assembly line, I wonder if it was still customized by a local van conversion company, and then sold by a dealer.

I had been contacted by someone a while back about the 'Shadow Ranger' that told me:

More then likely the bed on the Ranger Shadow was manufactured by Delta III Corp, of Sturgis, Michigan. I was one of the owners of Delta III and we manufactured step side bed conversions for S-10s, Rangers and Dakotas. In fact, I'm the guy that drew blueprints for all the steel parts on the bed. We built several hundred for each brand and generally sold them to van and truck conversion companies.
 


88stepside

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So Shran, what is the box floor? Is that wood? Been toying with converting mine to wood. The steel is pretty rusty on mine!
 

Shran

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The floor on mine is fiberglass. The whole box is one piece. It's attached to the frame by several pieces of C channel that kind of act as spacers. Post up some pics of yours if you can, I'd love to see another similar truck!
 

88stepside

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Jovibuilt is the King of Stepsides, he came up to Michigan to pick up the production molds for the stepsides probably 5 years ago. I found them for sale, he wanted them. Seems to me he got a mold for a fiberglass floor too. I totaled my truck just prior to that so he hauled up an 88' extended cab from i think Kentucky. Transplanted the box and interior, it's been a super long process.
My opinion on these trucks, they are all dealer specials. Multiple folks building various versions in different regions. If you have one, enjoy it!
 

Shran

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My gawd, this truck is a train wreck. As I mentioned previously, my lady friend wants to drive it and it needs some attention before that can happen. So after cooking out the gas tank and cleaning the fuel system and getting it running, I have also had to do the following (over the last few days.........)

- clutch - trans was also very low on fluid because shifter was almost totally unbolted from the top and it leaked everywhere
- rear main seal
- electric shift 4x4 was converted to manual. I spent several hours troubleshooting that stupid electronic module and got nowhere. It has a 1350 manual case installed now.
- water pump replaced, was leaking out of the weep hole
- new(er) radiator - old one was clogged full of rust and goop
- spark plugs
- coolant temp sensor
- replaced every filter
- new battery
- cleaned and repacked front wheel bearings, were very loose. Also converted to manual hubs
- replaced rear axle. The one that was in there had a wheel seal leaking, turned out to also have a junk passenger side shaft that had been poorly repaired. I had a good axle so I replaced the whole thing
- rear brakes - new shoes, hardware, wheel cylinders
- oil change
- removed janky non functional electric fan and replaced it with a stock mechanical one and shroud
- added a functional radio
- fixed several burned out bulbs and fuses
- replaced faulty ignition switch - had to hold the key turned just a hair to keep it running

I still need new or at least better tires but that will wait till I've driven it a bit and have found it to be worth putting more money into. I also need to finish the 4x4 shifter, make a boot for it, and clean up the carpet around that area.

FWIW for all that work I only have about $100 of parts involved... if that tells you anything about the level of my parts stash. I had LOT of stuff laying around that I used up for this project.

I did drive it around the block today and it seems to run quite well although the trans is a little noisy and the brakes need to be bled again/adjusted. Serious amount of progress in a short period of time though.
 

Shran

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One new thermostat later and a quick fix on a rattling exhaust heat shield - this little gem is turning out to be a great truck! Between myself and my lady friend, we've put about 500 miles on it so far and the dang thing just runs like a top now. Even took it out last weekend deer hunting and it broke trail through 6-8" of fresh snow.

Still need tires and it needs an alignment. Will post some pictures once I can run it through the car wash.
 

Uncle Gump

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Post pictures of the deer too please.
 

Jim Oaks

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Have any updated photos?
 

jovibuilt

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Jovibuilt is the King of Stepsides, he came up to Michigan to pick up the production molds for the stepsides probably 5 years ago. I found them for sale, he wanted them. Seems to me he got a mold for a fiberglass floor too. I totaled my truck just prior to that so he hauled up an 88' extended cab from i think Kentucky. Transplanted the box and interior, it's been a super long process.
My opinion on these trucks, they are all dealer specials. Multiple folks building various versions in different regions. If you have one, enjoy it!
I still have all the molds and 2 choo choo customs trucks and 2 shadow trucks.
 

Uncle Gump

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Make / Model
Ranger/BroncoII
Engine Size
4.0L SOHC/2.9L
2WD / 4WD
4WD
My credo
Lead, Follow or get out of my way
Interesting...

So jovibuilt… you still produce these boxes?
 

PetroleumJunkie412

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I still have all the molds and 2 choo choo customs trucks and 2 shadow trucks.
So.... Yeah. I'm with Gump... How do we put these back into production?
 

Jim Oaks

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Location
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Vehicle Year
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Make / Model
Ford Ranger
Engine Type
4.0 V6
Engine Size
4.0 / 2.3 Ecoboost
Transmission
Automatic
2WD / 4WD
4WD
Total Lift
6-inches
Tire Size
33x12.50x15

Shran

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Here's a few pics after it got a wash this past weekend. As you can see I changed the box and rear bumper (box will be used on my other project and it needs a bunch of fiberglass work anyway.) I wish this truck wasn't so rusty, I'd have fixed it up instead.





And my deer... was a pretty nice doe. I got about 35 pounds of meat, looks smaller in the picture than it actually was.
 

Uncle Gump

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4WD
My credo
Lead, Follow or get out of my way
I see you have no lack of snow too... or did it all melt like it did here?

You can't eat antlers... does taste better too. At least this time of year IMHO.

Backstrap stir fry out of the skottle… what time is dinner?
 

Shran

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It's all melted. We got 6" or so of fresh snow the night before that pic was taken but it's been really warm since then.

Buck tags are kinda hard to get here so I just go for the doe. Meat is really the only reason I hunt... I'll leave the trophy animals to those with more time and patience than I have, lol
 

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