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2006 Ford Ranger - Mr. Clean

2006 Ford Ranger Suspension View
Kevin Blumer | Writer
Posted April 1, 2012

Team Banana’s Triple-Duty Ranger

Some of us are content to wash our trucks every now and then. The worst offenders are those whose washings coincide with wet weather. Fortunately for his 2006 Ford Ranger, Eddie Velarde guesstimates he spends two days cleaning for every day in the dirt. This Ranger is clean enough to eat off of, but rest assured Eddie’s not afraid to get it dirty.

Eddie’s Ranger is more than just clean. It’s a triple-duty machine. Triple duty? Yes, and here’s the breakdown: It gets driven to work and other menial daily driver tasks. Next, it gets flogged at high speeds across the Mojave. Finally, thanks to flexy long-travel suspension and fully functional four-wheel drive, this Ranger is quite capable in creepy-crawly low-range situations. Daily driver, high-speed prerunner, and low-range trail crawler all in one: triple duty.

What about the banana part? “I chose yellow because it stands out for better or for worse,” Eddie informs. “Everybody has a white truck; yellow is more unique.” He continues: “By chance some friends and I ended up with yellow cars, so people joked about us looking like a team of yellow cars. ‘Team Banana’ was a perfect name. Someone made decals, and I’ve been part of Team Banana ever since.”

Follow along as we showcase the details on this truck. After all, it’s the details that make the Team Banana Ranger so a-peeling.



This truck came into Eddie’s hands stone stock, and has been built in stages as inspiration, time, and cash began to flow. For the front bumper, Eddie turned to Tom McKenzie and the crew at S.I. Motorsports. It doesn’t get much more meticulous than what comes out of the S.I. shop. Check out the way the bumper’s lower mounts tie into the lower control arms’ pivot bolts: clean, simple, and strong.

A Dixon Bros. long-travel kit leads the way. This kit ties into stock A-arm pivot points and provides 14 inches of fully functional 4x4 wheel travel. Fox 2.5-inch coilovers with an 8-inch stroke and four-inch-stroke Fox bump stops provide the springing and damping control. Dixon Bros. shock hoops complete the picture.

This truck came into Eddie’s hands stone stock, and has been built in stages as inspiration, time, and cash began to flow. For the front bumper, Eddie turned to Tom McKenzie and the crew at S.I. Motorsports. It doesn’t get much more meticulous than what comes out of the S.I. shop. Check out the way the bumper’s lower mounts tie into the lower control arms’ pivot bolts: clean, simple, and strong.

The bedcage bolts to the frame instead of being welded on. It’s more work to build a truck this way, but bolt-on construction affords easier wrenching in the future. Bolt-on construction also allows a slight amount of flex between the frame and the bolted brackets. This in turn makes the chassis live a longer, crack-free life.

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Specs

Vehicle: 2006 Ford Ranger 4x4
Owner/Hometown: Eddie Velarde/Sylmar, California
Engine: Ford SOHC 4.0 V-6
Induction: Stock, air intake box trimmed and patched for more tire clearance
Transmission: stock five-speed automatic
Front suspension: Dixon Bros. Racing long travel 4x4 system with custom A-arms and Fox coilovers and bump stops. Fourteen inches of travel
Rear suspension: Currie Ford 9-inch connected to Deaver F-23 leaf packs, Fox 2.5-inch diameter, 14-inch stroke bypass shocks. Sixteen inches of travel
Ring and Pinion: 4.88
Rear Differential: Spool
Tires: 35x12.5R15 BFGoodrich KM2
Wheels: 15x8-inch KMC Enduro Beadlocks
Best part: Being able to drive to and from the desert comfortably and still be usable as a daily driver.
Worst part: It’s never really “finished.” An ongoing project.

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