RangerDanger
I have a '96 Ford Ranger that I have done a few things to. The truck is lowered with coils and a flip kit. It sits on 17x9-inch Boyds. What I would really like to do is airbag my truck. Problem is, I don't have a clue where to start or what a complete kit should consist of. I've seen that www.airbagit.com offers a "plug and play" kit, but I don't know if everything is included. Any help you can give me will be greatly appreciated.
Dean
Via e-mail

Dean,
Going from a static-drop to 'bags is no big deal per say, but the illusion of a complete kit is a farce. You can absolutely get almost all of the pieces, but depending on how many valves, the valves' location, switch quantity, and so on will determine what your needs are and what constitutes a complete kit. Forget about trying to find all the pieces in a perfect little pouch designed specifically for your truck. For the most part, you will need front brackets and 'bags, rear brackets and 'bags, a step/bridge notch, at least one compressor, at least one 3-gallon tank, six to eight one-way valves, or two or four two-way valves, multiple fittings, an airline, wiring, gauges, and the list goes on. If you don't have a good understanding of what is involved in this project, then you are probably biting off more than you can chew. Talk to a reputable company or shop about getting more information on putting airbags on your I-beam Ranger. It's not easy!

Missing Model A
I can't find which issue it was in, but under "New Products," there was a '29 or '30 Ford Model A roadster pickup with frame and bed for cheap money. If someone could get me the website for the company, that would be great. Thanks a lot!
Sasquatch
Via truckinweb forums

Sasquatch,
You have good taste in early model roadster trucks. We've been eyeballing that exact pickup for a bit, too, thinking how cool it would be to build and drive. If you can beat us to the punch and have yours ready as soon as possible, then we'll ride in yours instead. Summer is here already, so you better get cracking. The pickup chassis and body you seek is from Last Refuge Hot Rod and is all metal and even has Bear Claw latches. Cheap money is right, as the whole package includes the cab, doors, bed, tailgate, and frame for $5,998. Call them at (970) 739-1965, or go online to www.lastrefugehotrod.com. Roadsters rock!

Ram GoingUp
I saw an article you guys wrote on lifting a Dodge Ram 1500 2WD. It was on your official website at www.truckinweb.com/brandpages/dodge/0309tr_how_to_lift_ram_trucks/. My question to you is, by any chance do you happen to know the part number or any information on the lifting kit they used for that truck? I am currently trying to add 4 inches onto my 2WD Dodge Ram truck. I have not had much luck finding a 4-inch lift. If you can help me, I will really appreciate it. Thanks for your time.
Mario Cordova
Via e-mail

Mario,
After reviewing the link you provided, we went directly to Rancho's website, since that was who provided the suspension lift in that particular article. Unfortunately, Rancho does not offer 2WD Dodge Ram suspension kits any longer, but there are plenty of other product suppliers in the range of suspension lift you are trying to achieve. Since you specifically asked for a 4-inch lift, you should probably check into CST (www.cstsuspension.com) as they have a 4- or 7-inch choice. Also, Fabtech (www.fabtechmotorsports.com) has a 3- and 6-inch lift or Rough Country (www.roughcountry.com) offers a 2- and 3-inch elevated height. You have choices!

HID Conversions
Hey guys. Thanks for putting together such an entertaining magazine. I have been a fan for many years now and have gone through a couple of different trucks, while utilizing tips and tech from your very pages. Anyway, I actually have a question that I believe has not been addressed before, and I'm sure many people would like an answer to it. My current truck is an '06 Lincoln Navigator and it has the factory-equipped HID headlamps. My project is an '01 Chevy Extra Cab Silverado, and I am currently replacing the front clip to resemble the '05 SS Silverado. It's pretty much the conversion you guys recently did. I want to put HID headlamps in the '05 clip, but I have been running into nothing but roadblocks. I have been told that the conversion is not legal, but the kits are for sale all over the place. Once and for all, can you guys please tell me what is legal and what isn't in regards to HID conversions?
Timothy Aldereeno
Via e-mail

Timothy,
It's difficult to say for sure what is or isn't legal. Most states have their own views, regardless of the federally mandated regulations. Currently, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is targeting companies producing HID conversion kits for enforcement actions. HID headlamp conversions replace the standard filament bulb with a gas-arc system requiring a ballast and igniter. Where the problem lies is the reflector design of a headlight housing. Those parts are designed to maximize the light output of a halogen lamp. When equipped with an HID kit, the light overwhelms the reflectors and comes out as uneven and blinding, because the light is not being directed properly. Factory HID systems are designed for HID and would be lousy when used with a halogen bulb. Humorously, the '99-'02 Silverados have a HID kit that is legal from Sylvania, but you have opted to upgrade to the newer year parts. Bottom line, HID conversions are being targeted for extermination, but provide far superior lighting than halogen lighting. For more information, check out www.xtralights.com. Also, next month's Truckin' we will install a set of HID headlights. Maybe the government can help instead of hinder!

Looking Like Money
I have just started getting into truck fever. For a long time I liked cars over trucks, but now I know the things you can do with trucks and I will never go back. I have a question about a front-end conversion. I'm trying to get an '07 Cadillac Escalade front clip on a four-door '02 Chevy 2500. Since I don't have the $60k to get a new Caddi, I figured the next best thing was to tear into the sheetmetal on my truck. What's the going rate for something like this to be done? Secondly, the Kelderman air-ride kit allows lifts to go down. Is there a way to make a lowering kit go up for towing? I like the lowered look, but I want to hit the skies at the push of a button. Are there systems out there like that from retailers or does it need to be custom made? I'm new to the airbag customization, but I love the versatility of height control like the Land Rover.
Kevin Boutte
Via e-mail

Kevin,
Being new to airbags would leave plenty of questions as you have addressed. First off, airbags are not all-encompassing drive-height mechanisms that are switchable from lowered, to stock, to lifted to suit any driving condition. True, the systems are adjustable, but the adjustability only runs a few inches in either direction. Airbags only ride correctly at certain inflated heights and from there would have to be under-inflated or over-inflated to remove or gain height. An easy explanation is putting Honda Accord springs on your truck, versus the stock springs, versus dump-truck springs. Your truck is only going to ride right in one area of the 'bag's travel. The rest of the settings will introduce less than desirable results. As for your desire to do an '07 Caddy clip, the answer is yes, it will fit...with tons of sheetmetal work. It has already been done quite a few times on those same year Silverados, and it looks quite decent in our opinion. A competent custom body shop could do the conversion and even paint it to match. It sounds like you have a lot on your plate!

Wheels Going' Round
I just turned 16 years old and love your magazine. It's the best! I have a '97 Chevy C1500 2WD regular cab with a short-box. I recently purchased four 17x10-inch Boyd Coddington Smoothie II wheels. The wheels have 6 inches of back spacing. I am wondering, what size tires can I run in the front and back? Also, if they fit, will they rub against anything that is not easily reshaped, such as the frame, control arms, and so on? Any help would be great. Thanks.Jason Plante
Via e-mail

Jason,
You left a large hole in the equation as to which suspension your truck is equipped with. Do you have a stock height suspension, a lift, or a lowered stance? We'll take it that you have a drop kit, because that would make the most sense according to your question. A 4/6 suspension drop and 17-inch wheels will leave you with plenty of room because of the small diameter. One thing is for certain: the truck will definitely ride nice with all of that sidewall. Mounting up a set of 275/40R17s will be okay and shouldn't hit a thing, except for turning. With that much width and backspacing, the tire will most likely contact the steering linkage when turning. Most wheel fitments for those trucks run an 8-inch front wheel, with the backspacing in the 4-1/2-inch to 5-inch range with a 255 tire width. A 255 will fit on your 10-inch wheel, but it will not be right. If you want to stagger the tires, you can run the rear tires at 275/50R17s for a little more street appeal. We recommend getting different front wheels!