1994 Ford Ranger clutch

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1994 Ford Ranger clutch

Post by Admin on Sun Nov 22, 2015 11:17 pm

Silly me, didnt want to hassle pulling engine in old '84 Ranger to repair oil pan, so looking on Craigslist, found an extended cab Ranger. Started and ran ok, clutch going, going, gone. Offered the guy $600 and hired it towed to end of my steep driveway. It had tiny bit clutch left so gave it a running start with engine revving and up the hill it came under its own power. Next day went to move it and nothing, not in any gear. Clutch absolutely gone.

So ordered a kit and some seals. Started taking it apart. Uh-oh, on the 4.0L Rangers you have to remove the exhaust Y-pipe to get the transmission back. Broke socket on the bolts holding it to manifolds. No room to cut anything. They put the exhaust manifolds on with tiny bolts that look like they would twist off at slightest provocation. Broken off bolts in the heads, not something I want to deal with.

Yea, oxy-acetelene torch is only sane way to go, but I dont have one since you have to rent the tanks by the month and its just not worth it no more than I would use it.

Somebody said you could twist the transmission and get it though without removing the y-pipe. Nope. Or at least I couldnt. So decided to cut the crossover part of the pipe out. My gosh its tight working room. I got some cut with angle grinder. But had to do rest with hacksaw and some with a reciprocating saw blade clamped in a handle and used manually. I got this inspiration to weld flanges to all cut ends so the crossover pipe can just bolt to the down pipes down where next clutch, its not big deal to remove it. Thing is the weather is getting iffy and it takes week at least to get anything delivered. Local parts stores dont stock such stuff. I could make some out of quarter inch plate, but thats time consuming too.

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Re: 1994 Ford Ranger clutch

Post by Admin on Thu Nov 26, 2015 11:18 pm

Oh this thing is annoying. I finally thought of that electric die grinder I got cheap from guy that resells returns from Harbor Freight. I got it to put wire brush on and use to de-rust antique lantern battery boxes that nothing else could easily reach. Its long and skinny. Kinda like a dremel on steroids.

Anyway I ordered a mandrel and some 3 inch cutoff disks for it. See if it can cut those stupid y-pipe bolts without hitting other stuff in a very confined space.

If that doesnt do it, no choice, have to pull the engine. That really sucks. No argument from me, I agree that an oxy-acetelene torch is only sane way to handle this stupid design feature. I just dont own one and dont much want to rent one.

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Re: 1994 Ford Ranger clutch

Post by Admin on Wed Dec 02, 2015 3:55 pm

Ok, after removing the oil filter, was able to cut all the bolts with the die grinder and remove the downpipes. Now to reweld the y-pipe back together.

Those bolts are hardened so cant drill them out without some specialty drill bit.

So going to try and weld up some clamps instead. They sell such clamps, call them something like "clamp a stud" but they want like $30 each. Sure I can make some out of some bolts and maybe bit rebar. Not like they have to be reusable.

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Re: 1994 Ford Ranger clutch

Post by Admin on Sun Dec 27, 2015 11:25 am

Yes homemade stud clamps worked fine, if anything engine quieter after clamps and the new gasket for catalytic converter assembly.

I did have to do a tape measure realignment, somebody had replaced a tie rod end and screwed up on one side so adjusted the other side. Anyway day before I took it for maiden voyage on pavement, noticed the one wheel toe out a bit odd. Centered the steering box and then eyeballed and tape measured it to slight toe in on each side.

Course now steering wheel is upside down with steering centered, but it drives nice.

I actually find it quite comfortable to drive. Probably because its 1000 pound heavier than my old Ranger. Fact of life, heavier weight vehicles tend to be more stable and ride better IF they have correct springs.

The bad thing, transmission still pops out of first unless I hold it. And fifth is usable but screams like a banshee. Second, third, and fourth do ok, little noise, especially on deceleration, but mostly ok. For transmission to be this bad 2/3s filled with Lucas, means it decidedly needs rebuild or replacement.

Now rear axle is geared so engine only doing 2400 rpm in fourth at 60mph. Not bad. I have been beating the bushes for info on putting old school granny four speed in it. Without a transfer case, would like a creeper first gear to climb my driveway. This OHV 4.OL is not a bad engine, Ford finally made a pretty good Cologne based engine compared to the 2.6L, 2.8L and 2.9L. I'd say its a better engine than the V6 Ford used in the 1997up F150. This one has some torque down low. But there have been no heavy duty transmissions mated with it.

I found a $700 Quicktime aftermarket racing bellhousing that would probably let one use a granny four speed. Also a now rare bellhousing from a mid-seventies Mustang II with 2.8L. They go for like $250 to $300. Seems the 2.8L has some popularity in old Capri and Mustang II and even the old Sunbeam. ??? And everybody with Capri or Sunbeam wants one of these bellhousings (and flywheels) to add a T5 from a later Mustang. The Capri used different transmission and bellhousing, the 2.8L for whatever strange reason is popular transplant in the Sunbeam. I would just need the bellhousing, though the bearing retainer hole is correct size, the transmission bolt holes arent positioned correctly for a granny four speed, and would have to be redrilled/tapped, maybe even couple ears welded to the aluminum bellhousing by a pro with a TIG welder.

Off topic but wonder why those with a Sunbeam wouldnt go for the 4.0L? Lot more power, and without measuring, my guess, not much taller or bigger than the 2.8L. The Mustang II was designed for a 302 shoehorn fit, so for sure a 4.0L would fit in them. My first Ranger came with a 2.8L and thinking it was just wore out, I found a cheap rebuilt one. No better. And in a Mustang II or Capri or Sunbeam, the Ranger 5spd should be plenty strong. Talking like 2500 pound car, less for a Sunbeam. Yea the 4.0L would be quite nice in light weight car, though suppose if you could shoehorn in a small block V8, have lot more power. None of the Cologne engines got very good mileage. As I said with first Ranger with 2.8L, all the power of a three cylinder, all the fuel economy of a V8. Yea I think the four cylinder had more usable power.

Havent decided how much I want to try mating granny four spd to 4.0L. Did find mention of couple people having done it, but no details. Probably money ahead to just replace the engine with something that would be easier to bolt up to a heavier duty transmission. Just that this engine seems to be in very good condition for 190k miles (guessing it may not be the original) and meets my needs other than crappy transmission. I can get a $150 rebuild kit for the current transmission, assuming no gears are buggered and it just needs bearings, synchros, and seals and such. And whatever it takes for first gear to stay in gear without me constantly holding its hand. That is very annoying.

Beyond that these light duty 5spd transmissions seem to go for around $400 to $600 good used condition. $850 factory rebuilt. Unless of course one gets real lucky and finds a good one in a pull-a-part junkyard for less than $100. Still light duty transmission, fine for a four cylinder, marginal for the 4.0L. A granny four speed would last forever and give me that nice option of a creeper gear for my driveway. No running starts....

NO big hurry on replacing transmission. No more than I drive, current one will most likely at least get me through to spring. I dont need fifth and all the other gears are reasonably quiet with the LUCAS in the transmission. Just the hassle with first.

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