Let me start off by saying that I love this magazine. I have been a subscriber for about 10 years now even though I am only 19. As with most guys with trucks, both of mine (even the daily-driven one) are non-stop projects. I'm writing to you because I have a couple questions about lighting. I currently daily drive and weekend wheel a '97 Ford Ranger Ext. Cab 4.0 with a five-speed. I have done some things here and there to make it a better all-around truck, including putting a Trac-Lok in the rear, some 31x10.50R15 Kuhmo Road Ventures on 15x8 American Racing Daytonas, some Skyjacker Nitro 8000 shocks, and a new Centerforce Dual Friction clutch kit. I recently installed a rollbar on the truck and I put my blue "courtesy" light in the center (I am a volunteer firefighter). My original plan was to weld two more light tabs onto the rollbar but now I realize I do not have the room. What brand light and diameter would be the best for me? Money is not very much of a problem. I was thinking of looking into Lightforce, but am unsure. Also, does anyone make an HID kit for my truck? I would love to put HIDs in my truck. And one last question: I am going to install a front mount receiver, and I want to have a receiver-mounted winch that I can switch from the front to the back as needed. What would be the best capacity for what I am looking to do? I would be using snatch blocks to double my line back to maximize pulling power, but my strength depends on that of the hitch pin. Thanks for any help, and keep the magazine going the same way! I was never really interested in prerunners 'till I saw the articles here , and now I want to build one!
East Pembroke , NY
Hey Dan, thanks much for the props!
As for where to find some HID headlights, try www.hidguy.net or BF Xenon at www.bfxenon.com.
As for auxiliary lights, if you're working with only a small amount of room, I'd say try the Baja Designs (www.bajadesigns.com) Fuego lights. They have HID and halogen versions and are packed into a small housing.
And for winches, I'd say a 9,000-pound unit would be great for your Ranger. But please check carefully on the hitch pin you buy as some are not as strong as others, and you're right to be wary of this as you plan for your removable winch.
Hauling Air Clarification
In the March 2010 tech article on Haulin' Air. I noted the F-350 air kit allows the F-350 truck to haul a 30,000-pound trailer. Am I missing something here? I went to Ford's website and found the GCWR (Gross Combination Weight Rating) much lower. Even with the fifth-wheel option this GCWR to be a total of 18,700 pounds. In other words, the weight of the truck, luggage, passengers, fuel, and gear and then the weight of the trailer cannot exceed 18,700 pounds! Not to mention the weight rating of the tires can only hold so much. Longtime reader. I'm always looking forward to next month's issue.
Hi Sheldon, nah, you didn't miss anything. And thanks for pointing out the problem!
Here the deal: What's legal, what the factory rates their trucks for, and what aftermarket equipment can allow them to tow are often different things.
This is the best way to look at it:
The factory stays within legal specs on their door stickers (the GCWR). Stay within those parameters and you should be safe.
As far as the air kit's rating, I am not disputing that it makes the truck capable of balancing a trailer that big (30,000 pounds) in back of the truck, but it does not do a thing for the engine power, the braking ability, nor does it increase the actual weight of the truck itself. It only modifies the suspension to be able to take this much load. Towing over what the brakes and chassis can safely manage is just asking for trouble. And our author probably should have covered that point better in the story. I'll take him out back and beat him after work.