View Full Version : ford ranger

mikes landscaping
12-06-2006, 07:31 PM
i know this has probably been talked about, but what do you guys think of a ranger for a first truck? I know its got a small bed, but i only do this part time with school. I would only be pulling a trailer big enough to fit a single walkbehind and a 21". What do you think about engine choices in it also. Will it tow nicely, or maybe underpowered. I have seen dakotas that have a v-8 magnum. Maybe this might be a better choice. Also i'm looking at extended cab for the extra room, considering im 6 foot. ideas? comments?


12-06-2006, 09:23 PM
it will work fine in any engine category that you find. Your bigger issue will be brakes if you ever overload the trailer. And a V-8 won't help you there.

12-06-2006, 09:33 PM
i'd think it would be underpowered and might be too much weight. i had one last year and it seemed it was weighed down alot with a 21 and trashcans full of grass. i'd say go with a dakota simply for the v8 if thats in your price range. might be a good idea to find a fullsize work type truck. i had a 93 chevy 1500 w/t with a long bed v6. did good on gas and could still handle an OK sized load

12-06-2006, 09:50 PM
if you read the posts of the people who have the smaller trucks, majority of them talk about upgrading to a bigger truck next year, or already have because the mini trucks just dont cut it.

12-06-2006, 09:53 PM
Just go with an older silverado 1500. Bigger bed, not as much $$, you won't have to upgrade and its a 1/2 ton truck. V-8 too

12-06-2006, 09:58 PM
I Bought a f150 3 years ago. It worked well for a year and a half. Then I bought a 2500HD and what a difference. The f150 is still a good truck but the breaks are so much better on the 2500HD. Buy the biggest you can afford. You might also want to look at 4x4. I didn't think i'd need it on the f150 but its really nice espically when you go to dump trailers and its muddy out.

For what you described you'd be fine with a ranger, however it doesn't give you as much room to expand w/o buying a new truck.

12-06-2006, 10:27 PM
If you are buying a truck new to start with then I would go bigger so you can expand. My first and current truck was an S10 before I started mowing so I use it. The small trucks will tow (not quickly) they just won't stop easily. You will be prefectly fine towing the setup you mentioned. You could even go bigger if you bought a brake controller. With the cost of gas, I don't know why everyone is all about the biggest truck. I understand if you need a bigger truck, but a lot of people just don't need them.

12-07-2006, 12:16 AM
you may want to check out this thread too.

mikes landscaping
12-07-2006, 07:55 PM
thanks a lot for your opinions guys

12-08-2006, 02:51 PM
What other people were saying about going ahead and just doing a fullsize truck is good advice, but if you still want to stay with a smaller truck let me reccoment you a good one.

I drive a 1994 Toyota SR5 Ext. Cab 4x4 pickup with the 3.0 V6 engine and I can tell you that this truck is a better choice in the small truck genre; it has big brakes, can carry more weight, and can stop more weight because of the bigger breaks. Now, if you're like me you will be skeptical about all this, but let me give you some real-world use for justification of what I'm saying. My buddy has a 1993 2wd 4cyl Ford Ranger and when you put a guy on in the bed the truck's mudflaps practically hit the ground; put three guys in the truck bed and the mud flaps ARE hitting the ground. In other words, this truck just doesn't carry much weight. (Only has one overload spring and nothing else) The brakes are smaller on this truck, too.

Before I owned the Toyota I do now, my father had it and let me tell you, he put well over the capacity the truck was weighted for (not really a good idea, but definately proving it's toughness) and it hauled it, stopped it, and held it perfectly. You're not going to do that in my buddies ranger. In regards to S10's, I havn't personally experianced the usefullness or lack thereof of an S10, but I'm told they don't hold up as well as the Toyota.

Also, if you didn't know Toyota is known for its reliability and quality, the truck has 118k trouble free miles on it with a practically bull proof engine. If you decide to go the Toyota route I'm sure you won't be dissapointed. (Just make sure you get 94 and before because the trucks changed in 1995 and after).

I think I'm begining to ramble, just ask me if you have any questions about the truck I drive in a PM and I'd be more than happy to hit you with a reply.

12-09-2006, 12:51 PM
Well I am going to disagree w/ everything said here. It sounds like a 4-cyl ranger will do the trick. Efficiency is the name of the game. I guess it comes down to a couple of questions.

Do you plan on buying bigger equipment in the next year?

Do you plan on hauling debris?

Do you plan on doing jobs w/ landscape equipment?

If you answered yes, a full size truck might be right... but if you plan on mowin and goin, I don't see how you can go wrong w/ gas efficient, reliable and CHEAP truck. Why would you want alot of money tied up in an asset that depreciates?

Toyota trucks are nice, but a Ranger will get it done. I have had several and they are reliable fuel efficient trucks that will easily make 200k w/o an overhaul. And they are cheap!! Which means more money in your pocket.

green horizons
12-14-2006, 07:34 PM
I started with a v6 ranger 4x4 ext. cab and a 7x12 single axle trailer with
electric brakes. It pulled and stopped the trailer fine. I owned the truck
when I started, so it was a no-brainer to use it first. It became quite
obvious after the first couple years that this size truck would not allow
for growth, and the "wear factor" on the truck was obvious as well.
If you already own the truck, start with it. If you're shopping for a
new truck, get something bigger.

12-14-2006, 08:14 PM
I started out with a Ranger, traded for a different Ranger this summer. That was a DUMB move, just like many people told me, but I failed to listen. So I had to get a C20 this fall for a work truck, and keep TWO trucks going now. I do think though that I will be happy having a separate work truck, so I wont have to go to school with grass/leaves in my truck, or go hang out with friends with my truck full of grass.

Really, the Ranger woulda worked for a year or two, but came across a INCREDIBLY BAD deal on a very nice Chevy that I just couldn't pass up. And the timing was kinda right seeing as how a friend just got a 88 half ton (had to one-up him of course).

mikes landscaping
12-14-2006, 08:52 PM
Lol i hear you about the chevy. But tyeah i think that makes a lot sense for me to go with the ranger right now because i dont want to have to worry about fuel and repairs on a full size truck also.