Project: STX Rehab - Ranger-Forums - The Ultimate Ford Ranger Resource


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  #1  
Old 10-25-2014
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Project: STX Rehab

I was not planning on getting this in depth on this truck. But I have to face facts. I am addicted to truck builds. This is going to be a light going over. I still have my Papa’s truck waiting to get completed. Anyhoo, what we have a 1987 Ranger STX. It was in relatively good shape when I got it. The previous owner tried to take care of it, but just did not have the knowledge to do so.

What has been done so far:
The truck ran like crap and had two dead cylinders when I drove it two hours back home. The plug wires were fried, the points in the cap were burned up and the timing was way off. I pulled the air plenum and cleaned it thoroughly. The EGR port was so clogged I had to use a ˝ drill bit. The valve cover were leaking and missing bolts. I went through and rewrapped the wiring harness with new tape and loom. I addressed many details as I went along. The tranny was dry when I bought it so I dropped the pan and serviced it. It helped, but still shifts sporadically. The interior is in great shape just needed a good cleaning. It looks great now, all it really needs a new dash pad. The large piece of trim on the tail gate of course fell off when the previous owner had it. Thankfully he saved it. I was able to repair and reinstall it. I would prefer to delete it but thanks to the big holes Ford drilled in the sheet metal I cannot. Oh my god the amount of water I have sprayed on this truck. I have no idea how much I have spent on water and degreaser. I have hit with the pressure washer many times and the underside and engine compartment it still greasy. There is more here and there but you get the idea.

Today’s plans:
I know 2.9 engines are not power monsters. But they do put out better than this one is. I have got it running 100 times better but it is still lacking. I think the cats are clogged up so I am deleting them. The previous owner had new exhaust ran from the cats back with a brand new Dynomax muffler. I do not at all like the exhaust that is on there, but it will do for now. While the exhaust is out I will be replacing the modulator. I hope that will clear up the sporadic shifting. I will also service the rear diff and install my new spare tire.

By the way, I also picked up a parts truck. My plan was to convert the STX to dual tanks. But I have to change out the bed which means new paint. I kind of like the faded green and peeling stripes. So I am going to leave it has it is and just part the parts truck out.




Attached Thumbnails
Project: STX Rehab-stx1_zpse49da78c.jpg   Project: STX Rehab-img_20141020_1234282682_zps9huqz3v0.jpg   Project: STX Rehab-img_20141022_181208082_zpsc7anfojr.jpg   Project: STX Rehab-img_20141022_182004539_zpsjlezq29k.jpg   Project: STX Rehab-img_20141022_190122749_zpsijm8bzoh.jpg  

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  #2  
Old 10-25-2014
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Nice! Looking forward to seeing this project.

Do you have any plans to modify the truck at all, or are you mostly just looking to return it to a reliable stock truck?
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  #3  
Old 10-25-2014
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I have some minor mods here and there planned. But I abandoned my plans for serious mods. I like it like it is. I will be giving the engine some more kick when I rebuild it though.
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  #4  
Old 10-25-2014
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I like it as is too. Those trucks just don't look quite right to me when they have a bunch of mods done to them.
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  #5  
Old 10-25-2014
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Love that body style.
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  #6  
Old 10-25-2014
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I was thinking about some suspension and running gear upgrades. But for a daily driver that will see occasional trail use, I just do not see a reason fro it.
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  #7  
Old 10-26-2014
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I did not even come close to getting everything done this weekend. Between having to help friends unexpectedly and discovering more problems with the truck, I got very little accomplished.

The funny thing here is I have several sets of jack stands. Yet they are all being used under other non running vehicles. So, I had to improvise a bit.

This is the section of exhaust I cut out of the donor truck. Looks like the previous owner also deleted his cats. I figured there was no use in doing the same work again. Boy was I wrong. I am starting to think there should be a back ground check before someone can buy a welder. After I ground down very excessive and sloppy welds I spent a huge amount of time fixing thin areas and pin holes. I do not want to know how much I spent on electricity, gas and wire dealing with this hunk of crap. I wish the exhaust shops were open; I would have started over with new material. I plan a whole new exhaust system in the future, so this is temporary anyway.

I pulled the original 1987 spare out of the truck. Looks like it has never touched pavement before. I put its life expectancy at less than five minutes at highway speeds. I hate seeing all that meat go to waste. I picked up a never used spare at the salvage yard out of a late model Explorer. But it is an inch and a half bigger. New tires are in the works as well as a matching spare.

I got a surprise when I drained the rear diff. I did not expect to find the truck came stock with 4:10 gears. Some years back when I was building these trucks into trails rigs I would have given a left nut to find one stock with a 4L10 tag on the diff. The clutches in the LSD I think need some help. But they work well enough for now. I found out the drums are adjusted a bit too tight so I will give them some slack tomorrow.

I also replaced the original 1987 shocks. They are beyond worn out.

I found a mess of wiring. One of the biggest and most time consuming issues I have with old trucks is correcting what previous owners did. I installed the proper trailer wire connector while I was at it. I have several lying around anyway.

I did other stuff here and there as well. I hope to wrap up the exhaust tomorrow.










Attached Thumbnails
Project: STX Rehab-img_20141025_132554839_zpswlymvqsp.jpg   Project: STX Rehab-img_20141025_132654773_zpsyuglflhk.jpg   Project: STX Rehab-img_20141025_153243801_zpsub070ely.jpg   Project: STX Rehab-img_20141025_190212950_zps7ngeoqpl.jpg   Project: STX Rehab-img_20141025_190221887_zpsbi9hnyy7.jpg  

Project: STX Rehab-img_20141026_143101514_zpsjdvpcbdl.jpg   Project: STX Rehab-img_20141026_143646795_zps9mstpx9y.jpg   Project: STX Rehab-img_20141026_154941346_zpsdbomqomx.jpg   Project: STX Rehab-img_20141026_154949673_zpsc5eh8nwz.jpg   Project: STX Rehab-img_20141026_155148075_zps0la8p7rs.jpg  

Project: STX Rehab-img_20141026_164800762_zpseznvw7r7.jpg  
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  #8  
Old 10-28-2014
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I finished up the exhaust and it is horrible. Those were by far the worse welds I have ever laid down. The material was terrible and the product I started with should have been scrapped. However, I tried to make it work anyway. I knew better and went against what I knew to be true. So, now I get to do it all over again. But this time, I will use new materials and go with the design I prefer.
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  #9  
Old 10-29-2014
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Drove it for the first time today since my last go round. It still does not shift right. I did not drive it long enough to say for sure if there is any noticeable improvement. But I can say for sure there are still issues. I think there is something going on in the valve body.

The exhaust is going to get on my nerves until I correct it. It does feel like the engine is putting out a bit better. But at the same time, it feels like I am pulling a trailer. I have had not a chance to check the brakes. Maybe they are binding. I know the rears are adjusted a little too tight.
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  #10  
Old 10-30-2014
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I pulled the drums to check the adjustments. All is well and the resistance I felt before was not there this time. Also, the brakes look new. The drums look like they were just installed.
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Project: STX Rehab-img_20141030_122127979_zpsbpcfwsgs.jpg  
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  #11  
Old 10-30-2014
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I just drove the dog snot out of this truck. It is running so much better. It shifts better and pulls better. The cats were clogged as I suspected. The exhaust drone makes me want to strangle kittens, but I will correct that later. It still labors with hills though. I think it might be a fuel issue. I was pricing tools for cleaning fuel injections systems. That may have to happen soon.
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  #12  
Old 11-03-2014
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Installed newish windshield wipers. One I bought new from the store and the other I found in a salvage yard. Yeah, that is all I gotten done lately.

Took the STX out of town yesterday and it did pretty well. I have seen an improvement in fuel mileage and it shifts much better. But it still idles high though. I guess I have a vacuum leak somewhere. I just do not know what else to look for. Anything thoughts?
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  #13  
Old 11-03-2014
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great work so far! its nice to see older trucks being maintained / resurrected.
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  #14  
Old 11-03-2014
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I am liking this one more and more.
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  #15  
Old 11-15-2014
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Nothing real glamorous to report on this build, I am still sorting out the basics. Yesterday I repaired a pretty significant power steering leak. It left puddles on my driveway it was leaking so badly. That leak contributed to the nastiness under the truck. I have been working to clean it all up and have made a lot of headway. Next will be an oil leak I found. I am still having an idle issue but it comes and goes. I am planning to get into the fuel system soon. Today I found a few things at the salvage yard. I got a very nice spare. Now I can get rid of the 14 inch rim and tire and I have been driving around with as my spare. I picked up a few minor things that will help update the interior just a bit. I do not want to change too much though. I will get into those details when I gut the interior.

Attached Thumbnails
Project: STX Rehab-img_20141115_144443095_zpsmnzqkpig.jpg   Project: STX Rehab-img_20141115_144457587_zpspljgrmzw.jpg  
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  #16  
Old 11-21-2014
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Now this really sucks. I have been slowly accumulating the pieces and parts I need for a while now. I was planning to get started on the suspension very soon. And I almost have what I need to finish interior. I also have a new set of tires coming from a buddy of mine. Then this happened. Another driver tried to shoot across four lanes of traffic because he “thought he could make it”. I broadsided his car as a result. This is what really pisses me off. We have the same insurance company but there is talk of them totaling the truck. I am very angry. The bad part is the whole truck will have to be painted. There is just no way to match the new fender with the old faded paint. I love the old faded green on it. Painting the whole truck will easily exceed its value. Luckily I have a friend that works at the body shop the insurance company uses. He and I are working to keep the cost down.


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Project: STX Rehab-img_20141119_123047366_zpstkarueie.jpg   Project: STX Rehab-img_20141119_123108731_zpsj5aiirun.jpg   Project: STX Rehab-img_20141119_123119437_zpsgiubuy36.jpg  
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  #17  
Old 11-21-2014
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Some idiots these days. Glad that you're okay though!
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  #18  
Old 11-22-2014
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At least the guy accepted responsibility. Most people would have tried to weasel their way out of it
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  #19  
Old 11-24-2014
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Glad you're ok and good luck with the gtruck. It was starting out to be a good build!
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  #20  
Old 11-24-2014
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I was just about to start the meaty part to
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  #21  
Old 11-24-2014
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Any news from the insurance company? They better not total it!
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  #22  
Old 11-24-2014
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Still waiting.
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  #23  
Old 11-26-2014
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Let us know what insurance says it's a beautiful truck
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  #24  
Old 11-26-2014
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I just got a little good news. But I am still far from knowing for sure.
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  #25  
Old 11-26-2014
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That is a nice looking truck. I hope it doesn't get totaled.
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