My 1991 Ranger daily driver build. | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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My 1991 Ranger daily driver build.

I picked up this 1991 Ranger a few days ago to become my daily driver and who knows maybe a few small off road mods. It is a 1991 4wd XLT standard cab long bed with 122k miles. Powering it is a 4.0 5 speed manual and an electric shift tcase.


Inside is a near perfect 60/40 bench zero cracks in the dash and a perfect headliner. Also it has AC, cruise, power windows and locks.


The previous owner installed a 4 inch rough country lift and 32" tires but the factory 3.55 gears remain.

The truck does need some work. There were a few vacume leaks I already fixed under the hood. The rear main seal is leaking pretty bad and needs to be replaced soon. There is no muffler or exhaust behind the new cats the PO installed. It currently won't pass smog so I need to solve that before I can start driving it as well.




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I ran my code checker and keep getting code 41.


I installed a new O2 sensor and it still comes back. Also as I was unloading it off the trailer I hit the wipers to clear the dew and now they won't turn off. So a new switch has been ordered and some reason the tilt column won't tilt. That is next on the list to repair.

Nice score. I've been looking for one for some time and came across the Sport Trac. I still have my 91 for hauling though. Great little truck.


Be sure to check for wet floorboards or headliner. I had a heck of time chasing the leaks down.


How long until there is a 302 under the hood?

A long time. California smog laws are enough to keep me from dealing with it again after we did an engine swap in my wifes Jeep.
Fair enough.

congrats!!! rock ranger gets a Ranger!! wooooHOoooooo!!!!!
check fuses for the hego sensors
Shes a beautiful truck!!

I dig it dude! Cool truck. They are so hard to find anymore in decent shape. I like your code reader too- I need one of those. Looks like the case was swapped for a junk yard unit recently?

Yeah I think the case was swapped at some point. I still haven't even tried to swap it into 4wd yet.

Right now I am still trying to get it to pass smog so I can get tags for it. The HC has been high and the CO has been extremely high. I have tried twice and failed both times.

Truck has a brand new cat on it from the PO. So far I have the following new parts. O2, MAF, TPS, coil pack, temp sending unit, thermostat, plugs and wires looked brand new and I adjust the gap to spec. New air filter, compression is 165 to 180 psi in the cylinders. Fuel pressure regulater will hold 24 in of vacume for three hours and not drop. Running fuel pressure is 35 psi. A quick throttle bump and it goes to 40. Roll in the throttle and it stays at 35psi. If I shut the key off after 30 minutes the fuel pressure will drop 5 psi.

I just swapped in new plugs and wires. I also got a set of stock size wheel and tires I am going to install and then try smogging it again.

What about alcohol in the fuel? Guaranteed to pass… run some of that stuff! You need to make sure the truck is well up to operating temp before they run it

I do not miss emissions!!!

Another update on this. I tried the smaller tires changed out a few more sensors and it still failed smog. Came back and started tracing wires from sensors to the computer to see if I had a bad wire somewhere. I started with the O2 sensor and found that the previous owner had removed the fuse for the heated O2 sensor under the dash. Put a fuse in and the truck passed easy.

Next up on the list is fixing the oil leak. The engine has quite a bit of oil build up on it but looked to be coming from the back of the engine. The clutch was giving me a few issues anyway so I pulled the transmission installed a new clutch and parts and a new rear main seal. Put it back together and started it shifted amazing but the oil leak was still there. Picked up some uv die and put it in the oil and let the truck run for 15 minutes. I checked the whole engine with uv light and still the only spot with glowing oil was between the engine and transmission. Pulled the transmission back out and found the leak is at the oil pan. Now to pull the motor so I can fix the leak and get this to be my daily.


Mine still leaks like that and I have really tried hard to stop the leak I kind of just give up! It looks like you didn’t even use the updated rear main with the sleeve and the tool to get it on. The theory on that I think is that the surface the seal rides on is too smooth to seal. So a sleeve presses on to the crank and the seal rides on that. There is a tool to get all this done.

On the oil pan, later pans came with a better design of seal you can swap pans and upgrade to that seal. That’s what I did.

Also the oil filter o rings leak where the adapter bolts to the block and the valve covers also leak but brian1 makes a kit to stiffen them up that helps.

I say all this like I know, but after all the work on mine she still leaks- so I guess listen to someone with some better success. I have kind of given up on mine.

I’ve never really needed the sleeve kits at the rear main, unless the crank has a lip in it that can catch your finger nail

That rear main is not leaking the pan is!

The oil leak from the pan gasket as long as things are clean and you get all the old gasket out of the old pan the felpro blue gasket will seal that up. But since you have a known leak location I would also sandwich the gasket in that area with some permatex ultra

Could have upgraded to a sohc clutch while it was apart :)

That’s better/ some divide from someone who knows what they are talking about.

I would recommend the clutch upgrade. It not only performs better it also feels better on the pedal. Great upgrade!

With the oil pan gasket you gotta use tiny picks and get all the old material out of the cavity on each side. The new gasket will not seat fully if it cannot dip all the way into the metal on both sides. There is a pocket in the engine that holds a ton of the old gasket.
Spend the time to get it all out. On some engines when I cannot get it all out I will trim the new gasket and again sandwich with permatex in that area
I hate oil leaks

The sohc clutch has about twice the surface area on the driven disc, it’s night and day! Plus they are self adjusting pressure plate so you get a long life from them

Good advice on the gasket. When I bought the truck the previous owner included a brand new clutch and flywheel. So the replacement was free fifty. If I ever pull the transmission in my 93 I will definitely do the upgrade clutch in that. I did dailybdrive this for about a week then took my 93 out to the desert to play. I knew my shifter was bad in the 93 but didn't realize just how bad till I drove them back to back. I do have a Hurst shor throw to install in it.