How far is too far?

Discussion in '1965 - 1973 Classic Mustangs -General/Talk-' started by electricgreen, Dec 30, 2003.


  1. electricgreen

    electricgreen Founding Member

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    This isn't about a Stang, or even classic, but I'm looking for opinions. I'm pretty torn with what to do with a project. We bought a 91 Ranger as a DD about 9 years ago. She has since passed along the DD duties to the 93 Bronco. I have gathered some parts to put into it in my quest for a show quality fun truck that can still work. Originally, it was a 91 XLT 4x2 with a 2.3 a/t. It will getting set onto an 89 4x4 frame (there are too many differeces to just swap in parts, a new frame was WAY easier). It is already a bit modified-it has a leer "cap" (basically an enclosed part that comes off the back of the cab, it looks like the "racer back"-it is a pass through from where the rear window should be), a jvc radio, minor things. In addition to the frame swap, I am adding push button 4x4, explorer buckets/console, different rims, and a new bed (rust). I am just having a problem with deciding on the motor. The 2.3 runs great, even with 13?,??? mi. The explorer seats are coming from an entire parts truck we picked up-it has a 4.0 in it. The 4.0 has more torque and HP (obviously), and we could even fit a 302 in there with some modifications. I am just at the point where it seems like much more and it's not my truck any more. The 4x4 was a way to keep it practical (4x4 is a great thing up here in snow country, and the hubby was threating to get a full size 4x4 as a back up the the bronco), and the seats were too (the bench isn't comforable to me, I'm to darn short!), but I just don't want to mod my truck into non-existance! I know it's not a rare vehicle or anything, but I just kinda feel like eventually it won't be my truck anymore. At the same point, the 4.0 or 302 has a lot more potential than the 2.3, and there are more after market parts available....
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  2. electricgreen

    electricgreen Founding Member

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    I'm going to try to attach a pic. I'm alo toying with a paint scheme too. Either repaint the way it is, or go with a more radical one (black down to the body line, deep blue the rest of the way or blue with blue ghost flames)

    [​IMG]

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  3. 67vert

    67vert Founding Member

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    just yank out the motor from a super coupe/xr4ti/or svo and pop it in there, those have somewhere like 200 hp and can be bought fairly cheap.
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  4. electricgreen

    electricgreen Founding Member

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    The turbo 2.3 motors, or was that the later 3.8 motor? I was toying with the idea of adapting a turbo from an older 2.3 to mine, but I really don't know enough about turbos to even consider it. I know I can get a header for my 2.3, and maybe some other parts, but it's still gonna be a 4 banger....
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  5. oboebrian

    oboebrian Founding Member

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    just do the 5.0 swap, I have a in depth manual for the conversion if you want it (i sold my 89 ranger). I believe D.Hearne or Charris (i can't remember whcich) has the 5.0 in his ranger. The 89 mustang buckets bolt right up to the ranger's seat tracks (i had them in my 89 for about 4 months, definitely a big improvement).
    #5
  6. TheWolf

    TheWolf New Member

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    I've got a 92 Ranger with the 2.3 myself. Good daily driver but I hate the the Mazda transmission. Anyway, I would suggest either putting in a turbo 2.3 or a 5.0. A 351W will fit but it requries more modifications. I would stay away from the V6. The Ranger Station has just about all the information you might need for engine swapping, just about anything that has to do with Rangers actually.
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  7. muh'stang

    muh'stang If I were rich, I'd make sure all the scoops on my

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    stick with the 4.0L I would say. use full size axles. Its an easy swap to do, plus you get3-5" of lift for the cost of installation (if you know a welder, thats next to nothing). For the full size axles you only need to mount the radius arm brackets, and the shock/spring towers
    For the rear you just add the full size leafs. The spring perches on each axles will be a couple inches to wide, thats where the welder comes into play, setting them in a bit.
    #7
  8. 72grande

    72grande Founding Member

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    Its really hard to tell someone to give up a perfectly good, and well proven reliable motor. It sounds like you have your hands full doing the body and interior work. SO put all your effort into finishing those, and leave the motor alone untill it blows up. By then you'll really feel like your ranger, version 2.0, is 'your car'. And you'll be ready to step up to ranger version 2.5 with a 302.
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  9. electricgreen

    electricgreen Founding Member

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    I've been elsewhere for a while since the boards were moving so slow. We checked out Ranger Station (thanx for the link), and I am 99.9% sure I have decided what to do. After reading an article about adapting an older 2.3 turbo to my current 2.3, I feel it's something we can do. We also found out (after much hunting) the a4ld is the same for the 2.3 & the 2.9 (the motor that was in the 89 frame donor), so I know the old tranny will work (the 89 was supposed to have a brand new tranny). I figure if all the import guys can make thier 4 bangers go, I can too (after all the motor in my truck IS a Mazda motor), it will be more unique, plus cost less $$ initially. We wanted to do the motor at the same time as the body swap, because we could get the motor set on the frame before the body, although I think it would be easier the other way around, my husband will be doing a lot of the heavy stuff-so his vote wins over mine! Not that I won't be involved, but he's just stronger (and taller, which does help). It will probably be another 2 years before this actually happens, since the Mach needs finished, and the house needs some things done, and there's only so much $$$ and time to go around. If I win the lotto, then I'm gonna be finishing in months (not that I'm holding my breath, lol)
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