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Posted: 10/30/2004 6:13:11 PM EDT
I was looking at a Ford Bronco tonight.

4x4, stock, auto, power, etc, 131k miles.

What should I look for trouble wise?

Anyone have any experience or give me some insight to these trucks?

Thanks


SGatr15
Link Posted: 10/30/2004 6:15:23 PM EDT
the mid 80's bronco 2's had a bad problem with cracked heads on their v6's
Link Posted: 10/30/2004 6:16:59 PM EDT
Transmission. Father in law had one exactly like your talking about. Tranny was rebuilt at 110K miles.

It was pretty reliable minus the transmission. This particular truck did crack a head (left side) at around 80K miles. Not quite sure what caused it (father-in-law blabs so much I don't listen half the time).

I don't know if this is a common problem but look for the tranny problem for sure!
Link Posted: 10/30/2004 6:17:32 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/30/2004 6:46:24 PM EDT by MT_Pockets]
Look to see if this is the guy selling it!







(this is not me...)

MT

Seriously though...front brake rotors & pistons.

and not seriously the carb bearings...
Link Posted: 10/30/2004 6:24:05 PM EDT
Complete barke would automatically get done....just a rule of mine.


This one seems REALLY solid.

Sgatr15
Link Posted: 10/30/2004 6:26:01 PM EDT
Many years ago my brother had one -
It worked great as long as he could keep it upright.
He lives in MN and on slippery roads he's tipped that thing over more times than you want to know....
Link Posted: 10/30/2004 6:30:26 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/30/2004 6:33:31 PM EDT by Rabid_Coyote]
The full sized Bronco was a great piece of gear. They sell cheap also, and if you want to go the 4x4 build route they have some great mod parts available.

I'm a Jeep man myself, but I had an 89 'Custom' that had been special ordered by the first owner- it was tactical tan, had a 4 speed tranny with compound 1st gear, V8 and had a rubber floor mat hose out interior. It was a kick ass full size 4X4.

I will buy another from that era. And like I said, I'm a Jeep man. That should tell you something.



ETA: If you REALLY want to get a Bronco, look for a '77 short wheel base Bobtail with 305, T-19 4 speed tranny, Dana 20 transfer case, Dana 44 front end and Ford 9 inch rear diff. Yowza! That's a factory 4 x 4!!!
Link Posted: 10/30/2004 6:31:45 PM EDT
This one looks like the one OJ had.

Seriously

Sgatr15
Link Posted: 10/30/2004 6:32:24 PM EDT
Link Posted: 10/30/2004 6:32:38 PM EDT
Rust, in the exact spot shown in the photo above.
Link Posted: 10/30/2004 6:43:09 PM EDT
Depending on what type of miles it has... highway miles, probably transmission. Short trip miles, transmission, off-road, both. However at 131k, at a good price... that Bronco could go another 100,000 with the PO is as anal about vehicles as I was with my Bronco when I had it. I bought mine at 130k and sold it at 160k because I got a stellar deal on selling it, and I wanted a truck. If you're going to replace the brakes anyway(something I do too) and you won't need new tires for 30k, it might not be a bad deal depending on price. Make sure its goes in and out of 4x4 high and low well also, try it a few times. I assume they're manual lockers... which is always good.
Link Posted: 10/30/2004 7:15:29 PM EDT

Originally Posted By sgtar15:
This one looks like the one OJ had.

Seriously

Sgatr15



Meaning you would have a black chaffier,a bag with ten thousand in it and a handgun?

Can't go wrong with that!!! Just check around in the back for some size 12 bromaully shoes!!!


Bob
Link Posted: 10/30/2004 7:20:16 PM EDT
I had a 89 full size Bronco w/ fresh rebuilt 302. It was Blacked out w/ 33"s.
Was a dog on the highway, not to sure omn the gear ratio but I prob got around 13mpg on the road.
Ended up selling it after it wouldn't pull itself through a cow turd, So I traded her in forr a 91 Chevy Blazer w/ 350.
Best advise from me is to get it out on the highway and see how it pulls. There are alot of bolt on mods to help power but sometimes MPG go down.
Goods luck man
Shadow
Link Posted: 10/30/2004 7:32:23 PM EDT
Go ask over at www.therangerstation.com


I'll keep my opinions to myself since they won't add much to this
Link Posted: 10/30/2004 7:37:30 PM EDT
I also advise on looking at the tranny. Had a few friends that had them. Nice until the 4wheel drive goes out or believe it or not, locks itself in 4 wheel permantly. GAS HOG
Link Posted: 10/30/2004 7:37:46 PM EDT
Only problem with the full size Bronco's is they have a fairly narrow track (when viewed side by side with a Blazer)
Link Posted: 10/30/2004 8:01:50 PM EDT
Check the front and rear ends as well as the transfer case for water, will be milky looking. Smell the tranny dipstick to see if it smells burnt or is discolered. Get in the grass and put it in low range 4x4 to see if you hear any popping and that the front end is pulling. If it has auto hubs they seem to fail more than manuals. Probably has the 351, if not then the 302. Either way it will have 3:55 gears which is a good balance for mileage and towing but sucks for anything if going to a taller tire. Look at the front suspension components good for torn or worn bushings. If it has quad shocks on the front it will have skid plates and a rear lilited slip. I have seen a few with it in front too from the factory. I just sold my 1979 Bronco last week that had been redone from the ground up. I swapped in a 460 and added 33" swappers but it only had the 3:50 gears.
Link Posted: 10/30/2004 8:13:44 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/30/2004 8:16:19 PM EDT by AZ-K9]
I have an 89 with the 351 motor. Pretty good "truck". Bought it from my father in law. I've had very little problems with it, but there is a little thing that bothers me. For whatever reason, in those days Ford decided that the unwashed masses couldnt handle an alternator that actually put out enough juice to power everything at once. There is a website out there describing an alternator conversion, but I don't have the cash for the hi-output alt just yet. Oh, and the back window sucks, they all eventually stop working reliably.


They're almost born to be lifted and have larger tires installed. They come really low geared and the addition of proper tires (not huge, but the factory ones are simply too small) makes it drive just right.
Link Posted: 10/30/2004 9:03:05 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Daytona955i:
Make sure its goes in and out of 4x4 high and low well also, try it a few times. I assume they're manual lockers... which is always good.



Okay...I think they are. They have those little red hub thingies on the front wheels.

So...how do I check/use manual lockers? I saw the gear knob for the 4wdr inside. It drove great! Very rugger, plain but rugger.


Sgatr15
Link Posted: 10/30/2004 9:05:12 PM EDT
btw...they want $3,000 for it.


Sgtar15
Link Posted: 10/30/2004 9:11:34 PM EDT
I had one great rig. It needed a thorough transmission service at 165,000. Tranny got slow going into gear during cold weather. Axle joints at 100,00 miles, e-brake actuator at 135,000 (yeah they test that here). Bendix drive at 151,000. Best starting vehicle I ever had.
Link Posted: 10/30/2004 9:25:49 PM EDT
I have got a 1990 love it even though I had to send it to the shop recently. The fuel pump went out along with the water pump. The only other problem I have had with it is the power windows on both doors have crapped out. I had to replace both window motors. I bought mine with 133k on it and have put over 7k on it since March. Great truck but lousy mileage. I get about 15mpg on a 32 gallon tank with a 302 enigine on an auto tranny.
Link Posted: 10/30/2004 9:28:23 PM EDT
if it has the 5.0 liter, 302ci engine, it should run like a champ for a long, long time. tranny problems can come up, but throw a tranny cooler on that bitch and you should do alright.
Link Posted: 10/30/2004 9:55:39 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/30/2004 9:57:11 PM EDT by prk]
There was a lawsuit about some Fords having an electronic module that would overheat and cause stalling (not good when you're turning to have it die as you put the clutch in).

Then some models had a connector on the integral reulator alternator, which got a buildup of dirt etc., ccausing the connector and usually part of the harness to melt.

Other ones had problems with the ignition switch - contacts inside would get a buildup from being worked a lot, some fires resulted.

Tailgate rot on the lwr right.

The front rotors are prone to warpage and heat-checking. Rear drums warp from excessively tight parking brakes, especially if hot. Rotors also vulnerable to tire shop impact gun overtightening (make sure they use torque sticks).

Then that was the era of the EPA curse - required reformulation of auto paint resulted in an epidemic of color coat that didn't bond to the primer, and clear coat that separated from the color coat.

Some Ford-made 4-speed OD transmissions lost lubricant with drastic altitude changes.

There are websites (NHTSA? ) that you can find recalls on.
Epoxied end caps on radiator eventually suffer from cracks in the resin.

Still, a good solid truck. Dealers may not stock so many of the parts now.
Link Posted: 10/30/2004 9:21:38 PM EDT

Originally Posted By sgtar15:

Originally Posted By Daytona955i:
Make sure its goes in and out of 4x4 high and low well also, try it a few times. I assume they're manual lockers... which is always good.



Okay...I think they are. They have those little red hub thingies on the front wheels.

So...how do I check/use manual lockers? I saw the gear knob for the 4wdr inside. It drove great! Very rugger, plain but rugger.


Sgatr15



Yeah those are manual ones. I meant locking hubs, or manual hubs, not lockers as in the rear end. The thing that can go wrong is the bearings in the manual hubs. That's easy to do if it's needed. I think that the automatic hubs using a heat filiment, and all that complicated stuff that can fail. To switch the 4wd, set the caps to L (locked) to F (free), then change the lever, it will go into 4wd in any gear, but go to neutral for 4WLD, make sure you unlock the caps when you're done, it is bad to drive around with them locked if you don't need to.
Link Posted: 10/31/2004 4:43:49 AM EDT
Don't know about the '89s, but the '88s had two fuel pumps. They had a low pressure pump in the tank feeding a high pressure pump mounted on the frame rail under the driver's seat. Went through 2 high pressure pumps before I realized the low pressure pump was causing them to fail (it ran fine without the tank pump, just kept burning the other pump up.)

In the 80,000 miles I had mine (bought it at 75,000 miles), I went through the fuel pumps, a couple of alternators, had to convert the A/C to 134 when the compressor went out, several back window switches, and a set of window switches in the driver's door.

I'd still own it today, except the towing capacity just wasn't enough for what I was trying to do. I replaced it with an F250, and wish I had had the money and a place to park it to just keep it.
Link Posted: 10/31/2004 10:39:36 AM EDT
I bought it


Sgatr15
Link Posted: 10/31/2004 11:02:12 AM EDT
Pics! (offroad pics!)

Seems like a great truck, congrats.
Link Posted: 11/1/2004 2:48:55 PM EDT

Originally Posted By TheRedHorseman:
if it has the 5.0 liter, 302ci engine, it should run like a champ for a long, long time. tranny problems can come up, but throw a tranny cooler on that bitch and you should do alright.



Forgive the echanicalo ignorance but why put a tranny cooler on it?
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