1983 Ford Ranger - 2.8L 4WD - Manual Shifter Assembly
Hello everyone, first post for me on this forum....and so you know, I now own my first Ford!
Just an overview of how I ended up buying this truck, though I admit this is a little off topic; I purchased this truck to park at the train station permanently and to drive the 2.5 miles to and from work each day. I paid $600 and the engine runs fine. During the week that i've owned it, i've changed the oil and put in full synthetic. I dropped all of the gear oil, front and back, and replaced it with new stuff. I put in new spark plugs (E3s) and wiring for them. I put in a new air filter (there was no air filter in it when I purchased it). Greased up the drivetrain wherever it was an option. Suctioned out as much other fluids (break, coolant, power steering, etc) and replaced them. Overall, I feel like $600+$200 in maintenance to reverse ignorant owner action was a good deal.
On to the problem...when I bought the truck, I was told that the shifter would slip out because the shifter bushing wasn't in place, which it wasn't. I replaced this, and noticed that the shifter rod was chewed up where it sits in the bushing (because the shifter was shifted metal on metal for God knows how long). Only three of the bolts attaching to the transmission (or transfer case?) are in place, and one of them can't be tightened down because it compounds the problem for some reason. In the end, I would like to purchase a replacement shifter assembly, but I can not find one at any junk yard locally nor at online sites that I could find.
Can you help me out with this? Is there a 1983 Ford Ranger graveyard that i'm unaware of? I know some of the parts are interchangeable with later models, but this one doesn't seem to be. Rangers and broncos of later years that i've seen (86-87ish) are shaped differently where they connect to the tranny.
Just so you know, I do not know cars too well. I know basic maintenance as listed above.