Owner: Josh & Tina Smith Ride: '99 Ford Ranger Location: Tullahoma, Tennessee
It seems like a long time since Josh Smith took his first job as an installer of automotive window tinting. It was sometime thereafter that Josh decided that mini-trucks were going to become his passion and that he needed to get busy building one of his own. Since he's always liked to challenge himself, he didn't want to build a truck that there seemed to be a ton of parts for, so he went out and bought a Ford Ranger. This truck would turn into the bane of his existence for a time as he worked his ass off to turn the truck into something special. But, by the time he was able to show his accomplishments, that truck would have become everything he had hoped it would become. Follow along as we give you the play-by-play on the building of this super-clean Ranger.
One of the first things done to the truck was giving it a proper, adjustable lowered suspension. This was done as unobtrusively as possible, by 'bagging the truck without the use of a four-link. Instead of installing a four-link, air springs were installed using the truck's leaf springs and Firestone F9000 'bags for adjustability, while lowering blocks were used to push the rear of the truck closer to earth. Up front, the nose of the truck was 'bagged as well, but Slam Specialties' 2B6 'bags were used. To make the truck change its altitude, SMC valves were installed, and the wiring for the switches was routed into the cab. With the suspension sorted out, Josh was on to the next phase of building his Ranger and couldn't wait to see how things would turn out.
Some time later, the truck was prepped for paint by shaving everything externally that got on Josh's nerves. Once the body was put into shaved and pristine condition, David Henley in Tullahoma, Tennessee, sprayed the Ranger using House of Kolor Cortez Blue Shimrin. When the body's surface gleamed perfectly, it was turned back over to Josh who also was handed back the interior items that he had sent in for smoothing and paintwork. Once the newly painted Ranger was back home, Josh went crazy inside the truck getting the interior reinstalled, along with plenty of custom stereo and video components.
Once the electronics were installed, Josh leaned upon the talents of Jim Mashburn who reupholstered the seats and door panels inside the truck. When Jim was done stitching everything back together and Josh had finished putting everything back where it belonged, the truck's true character finally emerged. Just about the time that the interior was completed, so was the truck, for the most part. All that was left to do was to massage the whole thing until it gleamed. The rest is being written now in the annals of truck show infamy.
Wheels/tires: 18x7-inch Veloche Verzio wheels with Nitto 225/40R18 performance radial tires
Suspension: DJM lowered control arms / Slam Specialties' 2B6 'bags (front) / airbag over leaf spring with Firestone F9000 'bags, installed for adjustability (rear) / 2-1/2-inch C-notch / '99 Explorer 8.8-inch rearend with disc brakes / 3.73:1 gears
Throughout: 3/8-inch air delivery lines / dual 180-psi compressors / six gallons of air reserve for airbags / SMC electric pneumatic valves / all suspension work by Josh Smith and KMA Kustoms in Winchester, Tennessee
Misc. Mods: '01 Ford Ranger Edge hood / custom exhaust routed through bed sides / Checkmate tonneau cover / Street Scene side mirrors / Go Industries lower bumper valance / APC projector beam headlights / Stull grille / window tinting by Josh Smith
Body Mods: Shaved body line / shaved door handles and locks / molded steel roll pan / shaved taillights / shaved third brake light / LED replacement third brake light molded into cab / LED taillights molded into a steel roll pan / shaved stake-hole pockets in bed side tops / shaved emblems / all bodywork by Josh Smith
Paint: House of Kolor Cortez Blue Shimrin by David Henley in Tullahoma, Tennessee
Interior: Nu-Image blue-flamed instrument overlay / chrome gauge bezel / BAD Hellfire billet steering wheel, billet pedals / a billet dash and A/C knobs / billet window switches / various painted items throughout / dove-gray leather and Nordic blue tweed used for upholstery work / '99 Ford Explorer center console customized with fiberglass and paint for use with Q-Logic video monitor and suspension switches / cut-down stock bucket seats / all interior work by Jim Mashburn
Stereo: Pioneer DEHP 860R 200-watt head unit / Sony PlayStaion 2 game console / 6.4-inch Q-Logic LCD video monitor located in center console / Kove Audio components and mid-bass speakers / Audiobahn subwoofers / Memphis Car Audio 600D 600-watt amplifier / Ample Audio 150-watt amplifier / Stinger wiring and circuit breaker / 140-dB tested system / installation by Josh Smith.
Engine/performance: JBA chrome headers / Flowmaster 2-1/2-inch aluminized exhaust / APC intake, S&P Performance slotted disc brake rotors with Hawk brake pads / internally stock 3.0L V-6 engine
Special Thanks: KMA Kustoms / Tina Smith / David Henley / Jim Mashburn