So I figured I'd start a thread to tell of my progress of my friend.
In the beginning he was just going to be temporary transportation I had a Bronco that needed attention. So I was just going to do a quick fix then pull the Bronco off the road and go through it. That horse had been my ride 7 years or so and been in two recent accidents along with typical Bronco cancer and some maintenance was overdue.
I bought him March '07 and he was in dire need of rescuing. He is a '92 F150 Custom and his only options are 4wd and sliding rear glass. Truly a bare bones truck, almost surprising that he wasn't painted white.
He didn't run right (only ran w/ the MAP disconnected) and had some frame rot (the bumper was hanging on by one side only) but he had 4wd and the price was right $500. He had high mileage (220k) but I wasn't afraid, his heart is the old 300 which can go much further.
So I got him back to the shop and attempted to pull the codes, only to find the his brain was toast. $125 later he was running like a top!
He had no radio or speakers and tires with a fair amount of dry rot. After a call to Crutchfield, radio was on order and I found a set of used 31" x 10.50 Goodyear's on Craigslist for $225 that were like new. I had some stainless tube steps ($150) and American Racing wheels ($260) I scored off Ebay in my basement for the Bronco but ended up going on him.
His vinyl bench Had to go, so I found a cloth bench w/ the fold down arm rest out of a '95 xlt at a local boneyard for $60.
And that was how I had intended to leave him even though the rear bumper bounced as I drove down the road. Only to find out after filling him with a nice meal he had a half tank by morning, he had severe stomach cancer. So I decided to pull the bed off to fix the frame rot and replace his fuel tank at the same time.
I pulled the bed at home and made some homemade mudflaps and drove it to work to fix it there.
After pulling the bed I found the rust to be more severe than I thought so I had a boneyard we deal with back half a good truck so I could section the frame rail. I also swapped two of the crossmembers w/ the frame I got. I initially thought the frame was just bad at the rear hanger and it was only after I was finishing the section that I found the front hanger area was just as bad. So there are three weld seams, the shiny diagonal was going to be the only one. I didn't have enough frame section left to do diagonals for the other two so I took the opposite side and cut the top and bottom of the C channel and nested it into the sectioned frame for additional strength and bolted it together with grade 8 9/16" bolts
I had a new fuel tank for the Bronco already, so I decided to use that instead of buying a new one. Since this is a single tank truck this also adds 14 extra gal. at the same time.
Got him buttoned back up for the ride home, this was about June now. I think at this point my plans had changed. I was having fun fixing him up and knew he was going to stick around for more than just temporary wheels. That and I had missed driving a pickup, a Bronco is a great truck but I missed being able to throw anything in the bed dirty or greasy, big or small w/o worrying about the carpet or having to leave the glass down. So I splurged and bought a Pierce dump kit because... just because I had always wanted to that and I figured it would help doing dump runs Unfortunately I didn't take any pic of that install
This is now almost March '08 and that pic also shows some new used sheetmetal I got from a fellow FTE'er in PA. I bought a whole lot of parts from him including rust free fenders, core support, doors, cross tool box, another set of rims, and misc parts(i think that was September '07 or so I forget). I also didn't think to take pics of the nose apart either. It can be too easy to get caught up in the project and forget the during pics. Picked up a good tailgate
And got the good doors on
About here is when I traded the Bronco in on a mint condition '96 F250 XLT SC with the 7.3 my new "good vehicle" while my buddy here was still going to be my dump running daily driver.
So that summer I hauled a couple of loads of mulch to my sisters house. Her yard has a hill that after dumping the mulch I needed 4wd to get up the grassy yard w/o making a mess and found out that the universals were pretty much shot. Now in August '08 while replacing them I ended pulling the front axle out so I could also re-gear (3.73's for the stock 3.08's) in preparation for a planned plow.
Old stuff out
Had a bad radius arm
The re-assembly, and having fun powdercoating parts
All new parts installed including Warn premium hubs and new super cab coil springs for a little lift (3/4") to help support the plow.
Back on the road after a long winter, the rebuild took longer than expected due to a new job now May '09
Now it's Sept '11 and after last winter with record snow falls and only having 2wd (because of the axle mis-match), I'm not doing that again this year. My job also changed locations and my commute got longer so I sold my '96 F250 (didn't drive it much anyways) and I bought a '00 Focus, 30mpg Oh yea! So since I don't need to commute in my buddy I sent the axle out to be finished. I now finally have the axle ready to go back under the truck. It also has 3.73's like the front but it also has an Auburn Posi and I had the axle tubes welded to the center for strength and 35 spline axles
Now he's ready for snow! and we didn't get practically any, figures
That brings us almost current, still intent on installing this turbo I've started that. I had the emissions updated so now that I'm good till 2014 I've removed the exhaust and air pump.
I also pulled the single core radiator and moved the battery to under the bed for room for the air cleaner
Funny the timing of things sometimes, found some decent captain seats, like what was in my F250, so they are now also part of this springs project
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