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Showcase cover image for d_rock's 1978 Ford Bronco

General Information

Year
1978
Make
Ford
Model
Bronco
Color
Tangerine
Packages
Ranger XLT
History
I picked up this California beast from one of my dad's coworkers, who got it off the guy who brought it up to Canada. Originally brown and white two-tone, but someone covered the white metal with orange. I commuted part way to university (mechanical engineering) in this for a couple years before deciding that $60/week was too painful on a student budget. I spent the next several years picking away at my engine/transmission swap in between classes, and finally got it back on the road during my final term. Next I moved to the big city for work, and enjoyed my ride, and the improved mileage. However, the winter of 2017 put me on some black ice around an uphill corner and landed my beloved Bronco on its side. The rear top was obliterated, and all glass except the windshield and passenger window was shattered. Fortunately my girlfriend and I walked away unscathed. The tow truck driver righted my Bronco and after a day at the local emergency center, we slowly drove it back to my parent's place. For the next two years, I picked away at body repairs, and reskinned the roof to eliminate an aftermarket sunroof that had been hacked in by a previous owner. Truck was repainted in Tangerine in the beginning of 2019. Feels great to have it back on the road!

Modifications

Drivetrain
The fuel-injected 4.9L sits as low as possible on mounts for a carbureted 300, atop custom steel perches. Swapped to 130A 3G alternator. ZF S5-42 with concentric slave is controlled by a hydraulic master from a 1994 F-150, and sits on a custom cross member with drop-out center section for ease of maintenance. A BW 1345 accommodates the original cable-driven speedometer until I can set up a proper speed sensor for the PSOM unit. Front output is 32 spline, and feeds a CV driveshaft (originally the rear shaft, shortened) to the front Dana 44. Rear output is 31 spline and feeds a shortened non-CV driveshaft from the front of a 1994 F-150 down to the stock 9 inch rear axle. Pumpkin gears are 3.50 for now. Radiator is from an F-250 camper special.
Interior
Freshly carpeted. Gusseted firewall reinforcement made from 0.125 inch steel minimizes flex under clutching and braking, and includes a hard stop for the clutch pedal. Column-mounted tachometer is fastened to a machined aluminum sleeve for stability and cleanliness. Instrument panel has custom gauge faces to look stock, but holds 90's gauges and extra indicators for lights, cruise, etc. Front and rear bench seats.
Exterior
Custom 2in body lift provide clearance above the big ZF transmission without cutting up the floor. Custom off-road rear bumper with swing-out tire carrier, integrated pull points, and shrouded lights. Custom front bumper currently under construction; adjustable, low-profile design, primarily 0.25 inch steel, with in-set lights. Shackle tabs run through the exterior face the mounting bracket. Will accommodate a Warn 8274 that I am rebuilding.
Audio
Cheap but effective JVC head unit, and a pair of 4" JL Audio speakers in the doors, another pair of 6.5" JL speakers beside the back seat. Planning to add a single 10" sub off a 200W powersports amp.
Lighting
Stock, plus a pair of 4" LED flood lights in the rear bumper.
Exhaust
A functional mess that sends the fumes out the back... planning to weld up a custom one eventually.
Suspension
Stock height, with Rancho RS5000X shocks for a 2-4" lift to allow more droop. Quad shock setup up front. Saginaw steering pump upgrade in progress.
Wheel and Tire
32 inch Falken Wildpeak AT3W on 15 in steel rims.

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