Phase 1: Facelift With Bumpers, Front And Rear
Flashback to the year 1978: Disco is nearly dead and the OFF-ROAD magazine project Ford Bronco is born in the USA. Fortunately for Ford owners, a company specializing in Ford parts is open for business as well: Auto Krafters. For more than 22 years, Auto Krafters, located in Broadway, Virginia, has been supplying Ford parts for car and truck owners all around the world.
If you are looking for genuine Ford parts or quality reproduction parts - such as Dennis Carpenter or Auto Custom Carpets and Moog to name a few - you have come to the right place. If it doesn't meet the high standards of Auto Krafters, it is not in its all-encompassing catalog.
Our tired old '78 Ford Bronco was in need of some serious TLC. The first thing that needed to be done was to acquire a Ford pickup and a Bronco catalog from Auto Krafters, which includes the '73-to-'79 F-series and the '78-to-'79 Bronco. In our case, we had a list of replacement items that were either beat up, worn out, or a combination of the two. Beginning with the front of the Bronco, we were in dire need of a new grille and all the trimmings. Auto Krafters had everything, and most of it was genuine Ford, which was a huge bonus. We ordered a new chromed grille shell, a chromed square tube grille, a parking light assembly kit, and headlamp trim. We wrapped the front and the rear end with tubular bumpers from Smittybilt.
The body was fairly straight, but we had an abused front left fender and tailgate. The fitting of the fender was excellent, as it should be with factory parts. Factory tailgates, on the other hand, are more difficult to locate, but Auto Krafters offers an excellent reproduction. We ordered new hinges to smooth out the operation. Fortunately for us, our stock electric window lift was in working order, or we would have been searching high and low for a used one at a local wrecking yard. Nothing that a little WD-40 wouldn't cure, and a quick disassembly of the motor allowed us to assess any damage and make sure that all of the connections were secure. Voila! It worked great.
Rounding out our project was a set of Cut-Out Fender Flares for the front and the rear. Since we were installing 35-inch tires, we wanted to be as legit as possible with the local law enforcement. The flares extend 3-3/8 inches beyond stock to accommodate the larger tires. The only requirement was removing part of the fender sheetmetal and fastening with Pop rivets, which are then covered with a decorative cap.
If you are a proud Ford owner and looking for a one-stop shop for all of your project needs, give Auto Krafters a call.
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