While most project trucks seek to make a stocker perform, for this one we are seeking to make a performer better!
Unlike most other magazine project vehicles that are born into stardom and built from the ground up, this project truck is having more of a mid-life crisis. You see it hasn’t always lead a life of fame. It was built up from the ground, slowly and simply, in the driveway. And you know what, that is not about to change. The only thing that is changing is you now get to watch.
As the truck sits now it is a 1999 Ford Ranger XLT 4x4 with 135,000 miles on the ticker, and hopefully many more to go. It is equipped with a long-travel front suspension from Dixon Brothers Racing (www.dixonbrosracing.com) using 8” Sway-A-Way Coilover’s and a 2” Fox bump stop. The rear is sprung using Deaver Springs Long-Travel pack and Camburg shackles and is dampened by a pair of Sway-A-Way 16” 2.5” shocks. In the future we will be showing the build to get the truck to this point but for now on with the introduction.
Now you are probably thinking to your self why in the world would they want to change that? Well, while it is a good and proven set up it is time for more. The two things holding the truck back now are its lack of a roll cage and its inferior rear suspension. Through all the valving changes and other adjustments the rear leaf sprung set up has never performed quite to the level I fell it is capable of.
So what does this all mean? It is time to link it. Using a 4-Link suspension designed by Giant Motorsports, a Jazz fuel cell for safe storage of fuel and weight distribution, a Ford 9” axle for strength out back, and a full bed/cab cage using 1 ¾” DOM tubing.
So kick back, relax, and stay tuned as I work on building Project 4x4-Link!
And as always, your questions and comments are much appreciated!
- Jason Gonderman
Off-Road Online Editor