1998 Ranger 3.0L engine knock HELP
Whats up, ive got a 1998 Ford Ranger 3.0L EFI vulcan....about 5 yrs. ago the camshaft synchro position sensor took a crap on me thus losing all power so i instantly shut her down and pulled over. scenario: im driving along and all of a sudden RPMs DROPPP, lose all power check engine light came on, shut it off instantly. NO damage was done to the motor, took it in to the dealership that i worked for at the time and my buddy in the bay next to me helped me out showing me how to replace the camshaft position sensor, as well as the synchro GEAR that had stripped due to the SENSOR failing thus locking up the cam so it stripped secondary to the sensor going out. I know that the synchro gear can also just sheer over time as well thus resulting in a similar but different scenario that i now RECENTLY got the pleasure of enjoying. SOOO hear me out guys, back 5yrs. ago i replaced the whole assembly (camshaft sensor/synchro gear) did a proper oil changed and filter, truck ran PERFECT for the next 5 years......sooo here we are TODAY..... scenario: pinned it to pass this guy hauling *** prob. 4500-5000 rpm 50mph or so....got to a stop sign a quarter mile after passing him, turned left and saw my check gauge light on, said to myself WTF then noticed NO oil pressure.....well here is where i am a DUMBASSSS and should have done what i did before...... i continued driving it, backed way down off the throttle creeping at 20mph 1500 rpm or less for the next half mile to my dads driveway, ya i know should have pulled over. lesson learned. anyways i knew what it was so i went over to good ol carquest and bought the cam sensor/synchro gear replacement and fresh oil and filter.....replaced it just like the last time, all went fine. started her up, sounded perfect, idle perfect NO knocking.....i was stoked.....got in it and revved her up after 5 mins of running......and at about 2500-3000 RPM it started knocking slightly, not gnarly,,,,,but def. knocking.....so i drove it home (3 miles) super slow at low rpms to my house and parked it. since then EVERY SINGLE time i have started it and let it run, it sounds perfect at idle, no knocking....... sooo anyways i've driven the truck around town now prob. 5 times just to go to the grocery store, keeping it under 35mph at low rpms....basically driving the truck at a low enough RPM so that I do NOT hear any knocking.....as soon as i have to get on it a little bit, or its shifting the 2-3 shift it will knock a little........anyways.......that all being said i am ready to tear into her and fix this problem.... pretty sure it is a spun rod bearing from heating up. i didn't notice any metal shavings in the motor oil or drain bucket i used to do the oil change........ Soooo I know i need to pull my exhaust, loosen the motor mounts and pull the trans. to get the oil pan out in order to get to the rod bearings...(FYI i had to do a oil pan gasket already a long time ago so i know how to remove the oil pan)...should i even waste my time or just yank the motor out and tear it wide open to see if there is any more damage???? what do you guys think, go the easy route and pull the oil pan and replace rod bearings then put it all back together and see how she runs.....or should i just take the time to pull the motor and fully go through it with a fine tooth comb??