Chappers Reader
6/26/20 11:09 a.m.

Anyone like a story of trading up? A paper clip for a house or whatever. 
I needed a truck for doing truck stuff, having got by by borrowing friends trucks I could see the huge benefit of just having one sat around. 
My 8yo son and I ride dirt bikes and regularly have to haul them to the local motorcycle club. One bike on a hitchhauler  on the back of our old Ford minivan and a bike stuffed into the back is OK up to a point. 
We bought a house with 5 acres last year, so we've needed to haul mowers, tractors and all sorts of crap. 

it was time for my own truck. However I had a budget of only $900, that doesn't get much of a 4WD truck around here. 

I scooped up a ranger that had frame damage for $400.

It had a smidge over 200k on a 4.0 OHV 5 speed manual with the 4x4, ran perfect apart from how it looked. 
I repaired the frame, new steering rack etc and cleaned it all up. $850 spend.
sold it for $2200. About 1 month turn around.

then sunk some money into another ranger. 

this time 1999 4.0 OHV 4x4 auto. A smidge over 140k. Almost immaculate condition for a Midwest truck. 
except the motor needed a new piston and new heads.

Also needed new steering rack (again) total spend around $1900 including the purchase of the truck. 

sold for $3300. Around 2 months to turn it around.
I didn't even plate those two Rangers, just fix and flips. 

I now had a bit more of a budget to get the 3/4 ton truck I really wanted.

I looked at Ford F-250s and Chevy 2500s, then my wife actually spotted this F250 and told me to go get it, because color scheme.

1993 single cab, long bed, 460 FI, 4x4. 

it has some serious rust in the floors, cab mounts, fenders, cab corners etc, the windshield is cracked, huge exhaust manifold leak, gas tank straps missing (ratchet straps), gas gauge not working, probably never had a time up in a long time, leaking radiator, missing tailgate trim, inoperable turn signals, inoperable interior door handles, missing side window etc etc. 

so I did the right thing and bought it and drove it home in the dark through the hilliest and twistiest roads I've ever driven on. 
also on way home noticed the gas gauge wasn't working, great! 

paid $1400

Chappers Reader
6/26/20 11:48 a.m.

First job was the manifold leak, I'd read that the studs just go ahead and break off right in the head. Mine had done just that. Just the passenger side. 

that explains the carbon decoration everywhere! 
I usually like the plug weld a nut on trick and those studs come right out, but this time it wasn't having it. So I broke out the corded drill, cobalt bits and drill Dr and went to town on the broken studs.

Tapped and new hardware. 
also folks recommend on the 460 not use manifold gaskets, but a smear of copper gasket maker stuff, so that's what I did. 

I caught my head and back and arms and everything else on the damn rusted out fenders. So I knew that I was going to rip them off as soon as I could. More of that later. 

I had wanted to get all the mechanical anomalies done first before the cosmetics. Much to my wife's annoyance.

but I eventually acquiesced..

I don't think she liked the she devil sticker or whatever that is.

I wasnt digging the crappy window tint And the general serial killer patina going on. 

then I found the murder weapon and Mardi gras bead things. I have it a good thorough clean! 

Also scored some factory alloy wheels which should brighten it up a bit. 

I gave it a good tune up. 
new radiator, hoses, water pump, thermostat, distributor cap, rotor, plugs, wires, ignition coil, air filter, oil and filter, transmission fluid and filter. 
She starts and runs just beautifully now. Nice and quiet too with the exhaust leak taken care of. 
new fuel tank straps and I guess while I was up there I wiggles some wiring and the gas gauge now works! 
Also while I had the exhaust manifold out I deleted the smog pump and associated hoses and crap. Catalyst has been cut out long ago. 

Chappers Reader
6/26/20 12:01 p.m.

While assessing the extent of the rust, I realized I'd need a fair few new panels. 

so a weld-a-thon was underway. 

not much of the floor and cab support and A post left!

Chappers Reader
6/26/20 12:13 p.m.

After chopping out the rusted out crap, I zapped one some new stuff.

and got the Chinese fenders aligned as best I could! 

underneath seam sealed and under coated.

and some new bushes.


I have a spray gun, but for this project I decided to go with several spray cans and some 2K clear. 


the color match is slightly off, the new is brighter beige, the older paint has yellowed slightly. But ah well, it's going to be a work truck.

Chappers Reader
6/26/20 12:21 p.m.

For new sound deadening I got this stuff, it went on really nice with a roller tool.

the boy checking out the nice rough as a sharks arse finish I managed to get on the fender LOL! 
I'll have to get that wet sanded later.

then onto the other side, merde...


Chappers Reader
6/26/20 12:33 p.m.

that square drain hole from the windshield cowling in the above photo was completely clogged with dirt and acorns so Mr Mouse had built a nice little house up in there. 

I was getting pretty annoyed with rust repair at this point and my wife also decided to impose a deadline on me too. Her friend was emigrating in a few days and had offered her a ton of free furniture etc, so the truck needed to get done and back on the road to go and collect said stuff. I still managed to get this side seam sealed and under coated etc

interior back in after all that.

managed to get a lot better clearcoat finish on this side.

and all back together! 

Chappers Reader
6/26/20 12:40 p.m.

The front bumper had seen some heavy action and the ends had been cut for some reason. I'm assuming when the plow was fitted or something. The cab rust is my evidence that it was a former plow truck. 
I snagged this later model F350 bumper and bull bar for cheap.

and used my older Ford to help me give this Ford a face lift.

CrustyRedXpress (Forum Supporter)
CrustyRedXpress (Forum Supporter) Reader
6/26/20 12:46 p.m.

Awesome repair job-good lookin truck. 

Your garage setup makes me miss the midwest; the rust make me happy I moved away.

Robbie (Forum Supporter)
Robbie (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
6/26/20 12:49 p.m.


Chappers Reader
6/26/20 12:53 p.m.

Managed to get out and use it as I intended, finally! 

I left the naming up to my kids and they named him Mr Poop as the title says because obvious reasons LOL.

Now onto those wheels..

they have got a lot of oxidation under the clearcoat. So I've been using aircraft paint remover and pressure washing them off. This was after 1 application.

this is after 4 applications 

still some stubborn bits clinging on, so I'll keep on keeping on then start polishing them.

tires are dry rotted so I'll reuse the decent mud terrains that are currently on the truck. 

maschinenbau (I live here)
maschinenbau (I live here) SuperDork
6/26/20 12:54 p.m.

In reply to CrustyRedXpress (Forum Supporter) :

Ditto. Chappers remembers my shop!

I'm guessing the little'uns were involved in the naming of this truck?

Georges1991 Reader
6/27/20 12:13 a.m.

wow! Looks great.


I think the machete was worth the price of admission here

Mighty fine work, there.

Dusterbd13-michael (Forum Supporter)
Dusterbd13-michael (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
6/27/20 6:30 a.m.

Nice save! 

Because im like you, i always buy cheap and fix. What total price did you wind up with if you don't mind me asking? Still cheaper than a comparable truck in your area? 

I wound up with about 7k in my stepside after all new brakes,  suspension,  rear axle,  interior,  paint,  etc. Which would have gotten me a Similar truck with well used stuff, so i feel it was the cheaper way to my goal.

Chappers Reader
6/27/20 7:58 a.m.

In reply to Dusterbd13-michael (Forum Supporter) :

Yeah I'm a sucker for a "deal" ha! 
I usually buy cheap well used stuff and sink way too much into it, totally don't count my own labor either, but I want to know things are done and done the way I want them. 
The KTM 200 and KX65 bikes in the above photo were cheap, but I've totally rebuilt them too so got more in them than I'd get back. 

So total spend on the truck (so far) is around $3k. I think I stopped counting when I bought the sheet metal. The paint was a few hundred  and then sundries for painting and new hardware etc. 

I do want to go through the suspension and steering bushes at some point as she's got some zig zag in her. 

Ive also got a big can of POR15 waiting to be slapped on the chassis too. 

Pattyo Reader
6/27/20 8:22 a.m.

Truck looks awesome!

When ya gonna get crackin on Binky? I really dig OG Mini Coopers.

Chappers Reader
6/30/20 11:54 a.m.

In reply to Pattyo :

Oh yeah that project, It's a bit on the back burner. Kinda toying with the idea of ordering some front end panels for this winter. 

It took a good few applications of paint stripper, but I finally got the clearcoat off the wheels, sanded the oxidation, and buffed them up as much as I wanted to go. 
A know a guy with a tire machine, so we changed the mud terrains off the steel wheels onto these last night. Unfortunately he didn't have a center piece large enough for his wheel balancer(he's ordering one). But strangely I didn't feel any nasty vibrations on the drive home! 

Mezzanine Dork
7/9/20 2:28 p.m.

Fine looking truck, for sure. What's on the roadmap for Mr. Poop? 


Back to that first Ranger. How did you fix frame damage that extreme? What process did you use to straighten something that badly bent? Did you reinforce it after straightening? 

AxeHealey HalfDork
7/9/20 2:37 p.m.

Looks great. Nice work bringing it back!

ultraclyde (Forum Supporter)
ultraclyde (Forum Supporter) UltimaDork
7/9/20 3:07 p.m.

Great truck!  

boy I'm glad I live in the south. Lol. 

Mr_Asa Dork
7/9/20 3:13 p.m.

Nice work on this.

I've got a '93 that needs new cab bushings, who did you end up going with?

dropstep UltraDork
7/9/20 11:22 p.m.

Man I purchased my Midwest , big block extended cab 4x4 for 1500 and it still has cab mounts and maintenance records. Unlike you I plan to just drive mine until it rots into the ground! Seeing people save these trucks makes me happy but I know I don't have the motivation 

artur1808 HalfDork
7/10/20 11:43 a.m.

Wow, you've really worked some magic on that truck! Great job on the paint too, I wouldn't even dare try to get a paint match like that from spray cans but you pulled it off!

Chappers Reader
7/10/20 12:23 p.m.
Mezzanine said:

Fine looking truck, for sure. What's on the roadmap for Mr. Poop? 


Back to that first Ranger. How did you fix frame damage that extreme? What process did you use to straighten something that badly bent? Did you reinforce it after straightening? 

I'm going to hang onto him for a while. 
Desperately needs the AC fixing as it's really miserable here right now.

The green ranger frame was rusted and cracked, I just jacked it up in the center until it was straight and welded 1/4" plates right across. 

Chappers Reader
7/10/20 12:37 p.m.

In reply to Mr_Asa :

I went with the Prothane brand, about $55 for the kit. 
I had to make a puller to remove the front cab mount nut/washer/sleeve from underneath. 
turns out a 80cuft CO2 bottle transport cap is the right diameter, drill a 7/16" hole in the top and some 7/16" all thread. Works perfect. 
I can't get to the back mounts without dropping the exhaust and fuel tank, I'll do those later.


Our Preferred Partners