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1996 Ford Ranger - Little Giant

Front Splash
James J. Weber | Writer
Posted December 1, 2000
Photographers: Ken Brubaker

A Ranger Splash Gets a Second Chance at Life

When a vehicle is deemed a total loss because of some unfortunate incident, that vehicle is typically sent to the salvage yard and is never seen again - in its entirety at least. Yet for this once totaled '96 Ford Ranger Splash, Jason Elder of Dittmer, Missouri, gave it a second chance at life on the open road. Jason, who works at an autobody shop, saw the heavily damaged Ranger as his ideal project vehicle.

Upon buying the compact 4x4, Jason replaced the factory front drive axles with a solid axle out a Ford 1/2-ton truck. To lift the Ranger to the desired height, Jason installed a Pro Comp 6-inch lift kit and a 3-inch body lift. Custom 3-foot ladder bars were fit to the frame and the rear 9-inch Ford axle for increased stability and performance. With a total of 9 inches of lift, Jason was able to fit 35x15.50x15 TSL Thornbirds mounted on 15x10 aluminum rims.

Satisfied with the stock 4.0L V-6's performance, Jason's only modification was to add a 3-inch Flowmaster exhaust system. He did change the stock gears to 4.10s for added grunt when out in the woods or on the trails.

One of the most impressive features of this truck is its overall appearance. Painted by Jason using DuPont Premium paints, he applied the awesome Purple and Yellow scheme. Treated to the purple and the yellow colors as well were the Lund Visor, theRacer Back rear spoiler, and the Lund side steps. The front and the rear custom-made bumpers that Jason fabricated were also painted to match.

For interior additions, Jason custom-built a rollcage out of 17/x1/8-inch chrome-moly tubing. That too was treated to the Yellow paint treatment. The remainder of the interior is stock with the exception of the sound system. Consisting of a top-of-the-line JVC head unit and two 10-inch Kicker subwoofers mated to a Sony high-power amplifier, there is never any question as to the whereabouts of Jason and his Ranger - all you have to do is stop and listen. As a parting note, when asked if his Little Giant was complete, all Jason could say was that it would never be complete. We'll keep an eye out for any new developments that he comes up with.

SPECIFICATIONS
Vehicle : ’96 Ford Ranger Splash
Owner : Jason Elder
Engine : 4.0L Ford V-6
Transmission : Stock Ford
Axles/differentials : Ford 9-inch
Suspension : 6-inch Pro Comp, front and rear
Wheels : 15x10 custom aluminum wheels
Tires : 35x15.50x15 TSL Thornbirds

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