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Old 10-31-2022, 08:33 PM   #1
I wanna be Dave
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Caldwell ID.
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Default Tater Tot

The truck, is a Mazda B4000, aka Ford Ranger. Built in 1996. She has the classic Ford 160 hp 220 ft lb 4.0 V6. 5 speeds on the floor and 4x4 with the flick of a switch on the dash. She has 190k on the clock and the engine is tired, but still running strong. The transmission shifts well, but the axles are noisy. (Bad pinion bearing) Tires are worn out as is the interior. She has killed two deer and the damage is evident on the front end. I have owned her 10 years and put 100k miles on her. I have abused her and haven't been good about Maintenace, so let's catch up.

I plan on rebuilding her and documenting it here. Most of the work will be done by myself. Plans are upgrades with a mild lift, larger tires, lower gearing, lockers, lights, winch, Bumpers.

Last year, I went through the cooling system, due to having a cracked side on the radiator tank, so it got a new radiator, water pump, clutch, fan, and hoses.

A couple months later I built a bed rack from 2" square tubing and am teaching myself to weld...

Introducing Tater Tot,

The bed rack...



I have since extended it out another 20 inches to the full length of the bed, ending just in front of the rear stake pockets...
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Old 10-31-2022, 09:32 PM   #2
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Default Re: Tater Tot

I had one of these, alas it was the cheap version. 2wd, regular cab, 4 banger, 5 speed. I think it was a whopping 10K brand new. I was so cheap back then I drove it for a year without a radio. But as you say, its really a Ranger, it was a good truck for me. Traded it in with just under 100K. I did trade up tho, to my Cherokee Sport 4.0L 4wd.

Looking forward to seeing you bring this back.
I have an '03 now that I picked up for fun (Ranger that is). 3.0L, 4wd, regular cab. In process of putting disks on the back. Maybe I'll get some ideas from you.
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Old 11-01-2022, 03:45 PM   #3
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Default Re: Tater Tot

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Originally Posted by kistner View Post
I had one of these, alas it was the cheap version. 2wd, regular cab, 4 banger, 5 speed. I think it was a whopping 10K brand new. I was so cheap back then I drove it for a year without a radio. But as you say, its really a Ranger, it was a good truck for me. Traded it in with just under 100K. I did trade up tho, to my Cherokee Sport 4.0L 4wd.

Looking forward to seeing you bring this back.
I have an '03 now that I picked up for fun (Ranger that is). 3.0L, 4wd, regular cab. In process of putting disks on the back. Maybe I'll get some ideas from you.
I just grabbed a salvage title 02 4 banger as a parts truck for super cheap (wouldn't pass smog Cracked intake manifold). I plan on updating the interior and body panels on my truck with the bits and pieces.
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Old 11-02-2022, 08:21 PM   #4
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Default Re: Tater Tot

I started a high clearance front bumper, don't worry, I plan on adding more tube and finishing the welding around the receiver.




I also have some 31x 10.5 r15 tires on order to go on my new 15x8" rims...

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Old 11-07-2022, 09:05 PM   #5
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Default Re: Tater Tot

Update on the front bumper, still waiting for my tires!

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Old 11-16-2022, 07:05 PM   #6
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Default Re: Tater Tot

Tater finally got her new shoes...


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Old 11-19-2022, 12:27 PM   #7
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Default Re: Tater Tot

They look good on there. Good clearance? No rubbing? I believe I read 31s should fit fine without a lift.
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Old 11-20-2022, 12:58 PM   #8
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Default Re: Tater Tot

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Originally Posted by kistner View Post
They look good on there. Good clearance? No rubbing? I believe I read 31s should fit fine without a lift.
Thanks, Yes clearance is adequate, however I do get a small about of rubbing on the back side of the front fenders when going over bumps at full lock. No lift on my truck, though I am eyeing a 1.5" lift that replaces all the springs. Driver side sags about 1" or so compared to the passenger side.
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Old 11-20-2022, 07:19 PM   #9
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Default Re: Tater Tot

I wonder if fresh shocks would do the trick?
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Old 11-20-2022, 07:26 PM   #10
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Default Re: Tater Tot

The sag is due to old springs, the shocks have less than 10k on them. Stock springs have 200+k on them.
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Old 11-20-2022, 09:08 PM   #11
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Default Re: Tater Tot

I'm thinking some lift kits have springs, but not all. I've only briefly looked at them myself.
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Old 11-21-2022, 04:14 PM   #12
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Default Re: Tater Tot

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Originally Posted by kistner View Post
I'm thinking some lift kits have springs, but not all. I've only briefly looked at them myself.
Most lifts have front springs and rear blocks, not all include rear springs... the one I am looking at has front coils and rear leaf's for around $800... Skyjacker IIRC.
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Old 11-24-2022, 04:04 PM   #13
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Default Re: Tater Tot

My Brother and I went out today to play in the snow and the mud! we had a blast...

He has a 04 Ranger Fx4 with stock 4.10 gears and all over stock.

Found some rocks to pose by...





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