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Thread: Potential Purchase - Looking for thoughts - 2 Broncos Reply to Thread
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  Topic Review (Newest First)
11-20-2012 06:23 PM
harleytech I vote for the 78! the Best big Bronco, and its rusty and worn but is complete and unmodified or hacked up.
11-20-2012 10:59 AM
speedyweasel Thou shalt save the dentside. Let the OJ go.

Yes, I'm biased.
11-18-2012 10:52 PM
Originally Posted by 95bronco12 View Post
Idono guys look at the rear driver side looks like bondo to me. Unless they decided to paint the rear driverside grey.
x2 now that im on the laptop and not the android.
11-18-2012 10:09 PM
Originally Posted by adrianspeeder View Post
Ford hasn't made a real truck since '79.

Nailed it!
And no good music has been made since the 80's!
11-18-2012 10:04 PM
adrianspeeder Ford hasn't made a real truck since '79. Bonus points on that cool cassette deck too.

What do you want to do with said choices?

11-18-2012 04:36 PM
96blkbeauty I voted for the 96. Then i'd sell the 37's and put 35's on it.
11-18-2012 03:19 PM
TNT89Bronco Xchoc-where are you located?
11-18-2012 03:01 PM
BurlyQ If you had plans or skill to get rid of the cancer, that 79 is as sweet as it gets. The 96 is sweet too, you can't go wrong with either. Personally I'd go with the 79 and do a frame off, only because that is the one thing I want to do someday.
11-18-2012 02:34 PM
CBboots Not being's hard to say. I voted for you to get the 96...less likely to need as much work, especially if it's going to be your primary vehicle.
If you looking for a second vehicle....change my vote to the 78 and pull the old, "Ah gee, all I got is X amount of dollars".
11-18-2012 12:17 PM
95bronco12 Idono guys look at the rear driver side looks like bondo to me. Unless they decided to paint the rear driverside grey.
11-18-2012 11:51 AM
GetBent4x4 I agree with ranger and TNT.
11-18-2012 11:07 AM
miesk5 yo, I had a 78 Custom w/351M, 4 speed and Rancho 4"
And now the 96, bought new

for a DD, the 96 is great!
we "over-maintain" it...meaning 3k mile oil/filter changes & lube, all filters changed, etc.. using Ford's severe duty schedule; see a Link at end of reply

One of the most reliable daily drivers and beach run/light off road vehicles we've have ever had (incl the ex 78).
Still, we had minor problems that we addressed quickly.

Besides the usual visual, driveability and leak checks, look for:
- oil pan rust - our's formed spots @ 62k miles - sand it down and prime/paint it w/Rust Bullet® Automotive or RustOleum Professional Rusty Metal Enamel Primer 7769402 brush on or spray) & high temp. paint - too time-consuming replacement for such a basic thing as not having better gauge and undercoat/paint by Ford
- radiator plastic side seam leaks, esp. during engine cool-down period/overnight - our's leaked @ 50k miles & again just recently - look for leaks after engine has cooled down, esp overnight
- auto tranny - E4OD had a lot of improvements made by 96 so look for good shifts and see the maintenance records; fluids/filter should have been changed every 30k miles and less if used for towing
- rust in inner rear fender lips, bottom of B pillars and bottom of tailgate (fender lips are rusting due to Ford's flawed spot weld process on the inner (tub) and 1/4 panel that lets moisture & debris in the seam) - bought patch panels from MILL SUPPLY;
they are primed and of 18 gauge steel - exact fit and packaged very well for shipping; #52 LH Upper wheel arch area 16"H x 40"L 87-98 about $32.00 each
.from the horizontal crease below camper top down to wheel arches and around the arches.
exact fit = Will be able to weld w/no adjustments to it or the 1/4...Another brand didn't fit well enough to fit the arch reasonably good enough to weld, let alone use body adhesive

check tg drains for clogs/rust..check weather seals, esp the outer ws on glass
- radius arm bushing deterioration (I coated em w/pure silicone, from day 1) but replaced at 80k miles w/Daystar polyurethane bushings
- ball joints.. costly if not DIY
- Programmable Speedometer Odometer Module (PSOM in 92-96), make sure it works; look for a waver in the needle at highway speeds; most get yard units for DIY
- look for some maint records or contact a dealer to see what maint was done to it a Ford dealership in the past (need VIN)
or on-line dealer service record summaries (Ford is adding entries now), etc. at Ford (need VIN) & must register if you haven't already for your other Fords.
If no maint records are avail; check and replace if needed all filters and fluids.
Esp if it is an Auto tranny; fluid level; when at norm op temp; after running thru all gears & reverse; no burnt toast or whitish (water) deposits on dip stick.

Car Fax is ok, but they did NOT list over $5k in single accident damages on 3 of our past vehicles; & our ex-92 Van had less mileage listed than when we sold it according to a CarFax report 2 years later... they did nothing after we contacted them.
- cracked exhaust manifold/Y, etc.
- roof/gutter area cracks (mostly appl. to earlier years)
- emissions air check valve & cat. converter (AIR) tubes tend to rust early; as does the AIR tube; buy locally or from
- radiator core supports, lower, it rusts mainly on passenger side, PIA to replace
- body mounts and frame rust
For a 96 get it checked for codes free at Parts Stores if you don't diy

- transfer case operation - electric push button motor/connector is a prob. area; usually usually a broken travel stop or the motor connector is fouled, etc.

Also the Check Engine Light (CEL) comes on when the electronic engine control system is not working properly. The check engine warning indicator comes on briefly when the ignition switch lock cylinder is turned to ON, and should turn off when the engine starts. If the check engine warning indicator does not come on when the ignition switch lock cylinder is turned to ON or if it comes on while the vehicle is moving, the system is malfunctioning
If the CEL does not light up at all when starting it; then suspect that someone removed it.
Same for Amber ABS lamp in Instr Panel.. The 4-wheel anti-lock brake system is self monitoring. When the ignition switch is placed in the RUN position, the anti-lock brake electronic control module will perform a preliminary self check on the anti-lock electrical system indicated by a momentary illumination of the amber ABS warning light in the instrument cluster. During vehicle operation, including normal and anti-lock braking, the anti-lock brake electronic control module monitors all electrical anti-lock functions and some hydraulic operations.

In most malfunctions of the anti-lock brake system, the amber ABS warning light will be illuminated. However, most malfunctions are recorded as a coded number in the anti-lock brake electronic control module memory and assist in pinpointing the component needing service. Our module blew the micropprcessors two years ago and two yard modules were bad..No returns so I'm running without 4WABS, just like the old days.

Suggest you buy the official FORD EVTM, Service manual CD from E bay or Steve83 (use the search here for him and use the e mail function to contact him); it is the BEST under $15.00 or so thAng you can get to service and repair your Bronco!

Owners Guide (Manual) for 96 Bronco/Ford truck & other Ford vehicles, get a free download for 96; includes Scheduled Maintenance Guide
Source: by Ford via
11-18-2012 10:11 AM
Ranger429 Even being a 79 guy I vote for the 96. That price is WAY to high for the 79 with the rust issues. IMO the 79 is only worth about 1K.
11-18-2012 08:31 AM
ModularMach1 I voted for the 96. FI, and the more modern amenities are nice.
11-18-2012 08:27 AM
DaveG the '79's interior shows probably 260,000 miles. Rust is rust. I'd pass on that. The other one I can't tell anything, the pictures are horrible. But if the '96 has true miles and no rust, I'd go with that.
11-18-2012 07:32 AM
Saltlife Are you a Carb guy or EFI guy? Which one do you know how to work on if at all? I your not mechanically inclined and will take to a shop if anything goes wrong then you might want to stick with the 96. Sometime a shop see a older truck like that 79 and they see $$$ with things to find.

I like the 79 little rust that can be fixed some buffing and she will shine. The 96 looks great (from the bad pictures that were taken) Check it out see all mods that have been done then offer 2800 cash in hand.

Just like f150inline said that 79 could have 160k or 260k because of the 5 digit odometer they put in those years so check the registration. If the owner was honest it should tell.

I think i would go for the 96 for a little less then asking price. If the mods and everything checks out.
11-18-2012 07:17 AM
maro I would like to have both of them, even for asking prices, not to much for Europe. But transport is so expensive
11-18-2012 06:45 AM
Originally Posted by xchox View Post
Just wondering what your thoughts are and what I should look for. Thanks guys!
I voted neither. Reason.... What are you looking for?
What's your mechanical skill set?
What are your plans?
A daily driver?
Or just a weekend toy?
Do you plan to do most of the work your self?
Or have a shop do the work?

Me personally, I would go with the 96, cause I don't like messing with carbs.
11-18-2012 01:37 AM
TNT89Bronco Naturally, you are talking about two different monsters here. It really depends what you want. I own 3-78/79s and a 89. They look different, have different drive trains and are different technology under the hood. The 79 will be much easier to work on and troubleshoot. My guess is that the 96 will be more reliable, since it is 17 years newer. Not a guarantee, but a pretty safe bet. If you fix up the '79, it will be more of a head turner.

The '96 appears to be a pretty good value, given the mods, lack of rust, and desirable year (got the issues with the drip rail cracks and E4OD fixed.)

I love that interior of the 79 and paint scheme. . The rust can be addressed, with work, naturally. If the '79 was near me, I would make him an offer. No where near the $2,800. Not worth it IMHO. More like $1,200-1,500 here in Northern Cali. Where are you located? Might be a bargain wherever you are.

All that being said, get which ever one fits your needs and what you like. You are gonna be driving it and have to do the work.

I voted for the 79, and now ya know why. I love the 78/79 model years.
11-18-2012 01:34 AM
AlaskanBronco Even though the 96 looks like a much better deal, the 79 looks like it needs a member to save it before it goes to the scrap heap.

Tough call.
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