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  #1  
Old 12-10-2009, 10:11 AM
LasPulgas LasPulgas is offline
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Default Grab Handles

I want to install grab handles on the cab struts at the sides of the windshield. All the f150's and f250's I've driven have 'em but my '99 Ranger 4x4 doesn't. Has anybody done this? Is there a Ranger OEM grab handle or will I have to adapt something? Thanks and great forum BTW.
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  #2  
Old 12-10-2009, 12:15 PM
RangerJustin RangerJustin is offline
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You have them overhead correct? In 04 I believe it was they switched to the A-pillar grab handle. Under the A-pillar there is some bracket that the handles screw into welded to the body IIRC.
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  #3  
Old 12-10-2009, 01:47 PM
turbo turbo is offline
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I think the A-pillar grab handles are specific to the FX4 Level II models, and only specific years of them, at that.

I imagine Shane will be by this thread eventually, and can fill in the details including Ford part numbers, etc, so you can order the right stuff.

Generally speaking, if you don't have grab handles there now, you'll need:

the grab handles (duh!)
new A-pillars, designed for the grab handles
the bracket that the handles bolt into underneath the A-pillar
some method of attaching the brackets to the A-pillars (Shane used nut-serts)
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2001 Ranger XLT 4.0L SOHC
Silver Frost w/ Dark Graphite interior


Modifications
Summit 3" Body Lift
31x10.50 A/T tires
Explorer overhead console
Explorer auto-dim mirror
Explorer auto-headlights
Aux1 & Aux2 inputs on factory AM/FM/CD/Cassette
Door-dinger silencer button
Seamless retractable roof and passenger-side ejection seat with steering wheel mounted controls and safety interlock
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  #4  
Old 12-10-2009, 01:57 PM
greyghost greyghost is offline
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my '04 base model regular cab has them on the factory .
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Old 12-10-2009, 02:08 PM
turbo turbo is offline
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ah..

perhaps, as in Shane's case and my case, the restriction was due to the interior color. he and I both have a fairly rare (the dark graphite gray) interior, so the difficulty might've been finding a specific model that had both the grab handle option and the color option...
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2001 Ranger XLT 4.0L SOHC
Silver Frost w/ Dark Graphite interior


Modifications
Summit 3" Body Lift
31x10.50 A/T tires
Explorer overhead console
Explorer auto-dim mirror
Explorer auto-headlights
Aux1 & Aux2 inputs on factory AM/FM/CD/Cassette
Door-dinger silencer button
Seamless retractable roof and passenger-side ejection seat with steering wheel mounted controls and safety interlock
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  #6  
Old 12-10-2009, 03:01 PM
LasPulgas LasPulgas is offline
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Thanks for the replies guys. I have a grab handle over the passenger side door only. Nothing on the driver's side and I have the gray interior. Black handles would be fine. I take it that the A-pillar is what I called a cab strut? Seems like I recall on other trucks they bolted straight into that with no additional bracket....
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  #7  
Old 12-10-2009, 03:10 PM
STL STL is offline
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Here is one someone did

There is a bracket and it is riveted to the cab from the factory

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Old 12-10-2009, 03:27 PM
DangerRanger01 DangerRanger01 is offline
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Shane will pop up in there with more detail and pictures, but basically there is a metal bracket that we had to install blind nuts into the a-arm. Which allowed us to bolt the metal bracket and the handle to. Really easy, just finding the parts is the hard part.
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  #9  
Old 12-11-2009, 08:40 AM
turbo turbo is offline
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hey G-Rant... good to see you over here! ;-)

Quote:
Originally Posted by LasPulgas
Nothing on the driver's side and I have the gray interior. Black handles would be fine.
It's not just the handle, mind you -- to make it look OEM, you'd be replacing the A-pillar plastic, as well, and you'd want it to match the rest of the trim inside the cab.

You say "the gray interior" - and I'll ask which gray interior? ;-) There's a fairly common gray interior color, and there's a relatively rare gray interior color in the Ranger/Explorer line...
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2001 Ranger XLT 4.0L SOHC
Silver Frost w/ Dark Graphite interior


Modifications
Summit 3" Body Lift
31x10.50 A/T tires
Explorer overhead console
Explorer auto-dim mirror
Explorer auto-headlights
Aux1 & Aux2 inputs on factory AM/FM/CD/Cassette
Door-dinger silencer button
Seamless retractable roof and passenger-side ejection seat with steering wheel mounted controls and safety interlock
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  #10  
Old 12-11-2009, 01:38 PM
Fx4wannabe01 Fx4wannabe01 is offline
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Alrighty.

In '03, Ford made some interior changes to the trucks. Making the A-pillar grab handles standard on all models, among other upgrades over the '02 model year. They also changed how those A pillars mounted to the mody at the roof. '03+ a-pillar plastic doesn't fit an 02 and older truck. I found that out the hard way. BUT...some '02 and olders did come with a-pillar grabs. I believe they must've been part of an upgrade package or something. I'm unsure on which got it and which didn't. My 01 xlt 4x4 didn't have 'em, but my buddy's 98 xlt 4x4 did.

To put in a-pillar grabs, you'll need the a-pillar plastics for grab handles, the grab handles themselves(as well as the screw hole covers), and the bracket that bolts/rivets to the cab and the handles mount to those.

The 00.5-02 dark gray grab pillars are VERY rare. I searched for over a year for those pillar plastics in dark gray....gave up and went to Ford. Mine came from Wisconson from my buddy's dad that is my local Ford Parts Dept manager. Brand spankin' new from a NOS warehouse full of discontinued replacement parts. Not cheap either mind you. The brackets are actually pretty reasonable priced at about $25 per side. The grab handles themselves are the same grabs you've got on the passenger side roof, so I just grabbed those and the screw hole covers as well as the screws from a local junkyard out of like...3 different rangers. Gotta have extras right? lol.

All the other colors of these interiors are available as a rattle can...so changing color is so big deal. But nobody made this Dark Grey Ford color in a rattle can up until just a few months ago. Spray wasn't an option and IMO, it still isn't an option. I like everything to look totally OEM looking.

As Brian mentioned earlier, I like to use nutserts. Sometimes called threaded rivets. Basically...you use it like a rivet but it's got threads so you can thread a bolt into it. I used 1/4-20 or 24 nutserts and obviously 1/4" bolts and washers to secure the brackets to the truck since you can't get a nut back there. Stock, they use HUGE rivets and I was never successfull at drilling those out so I could reuse used brackets. I opted for the nutsert route because I always have the option of totally removing the a-pillar grabs if I wanted down the road, and all parts would be reusable afterwards. After this mod, I've fallen in love with nutserts and actually have a couple on my roof. And I use them to secure my CB antenna bracket. ALOT more reliable and longer lasting compared to self taping screws.

Here's some pics of my install...












Quote:
Originally Posted by Fx4wannabe01
Before:


After:
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Last edited by Fx4wannabe01; 12-11-2009 at 01:41 PM.
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  #11  
Old 12-11-2009, 03:12 PM
LasPulgas LasPulgas is offline
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WOW thanks for the great write up! This is everything I needed to know.
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  #12  
Old 12-11-2009, 03:12 PM
rdnekgt rdnekgt is offline
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wow that looks good my truck came with them but i dont what i would do without them and that reminds me i have to tighten the right one thanks
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  #13  
Old 12-11-2009, 03:43 PM
Fx4wannabe01 Fx4wannabe01 is offline
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Oh yeah! Little tip too....get new phillips head machine screws instead of using those hex head ones that ford uses. Makes it VERY easy to unscrew those handles from the bracket. It's a hell of a headache trying to find the right size socket in deep form to remove those screws in stock form. Them things are a WEIRD size.
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Old 12-11-2009, 04:09 PM
LasPulgas LasPulgas is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by turbo View Post
ah..

perhaps, as in Shane's case and my case, the restriction was due to the interior color. he and I both have a fairly rare (the dark graphite gray) interior, so the difficulty might've been finding a specific model that had both the grab handle option and the color option...
My ID sticker says the trim is E2......
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  #15  
Old 12-11-2009, 04:50 PM
Fx4wannabe01 Fx4wannabe01 is offline
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If it's grey and 99, it most likely is the light grey. Dark grey starting midway in the '00 model year.

Little comparo*...

Top: Black
Middle: Dark Gray
Bottom: Lt. Gray



* I don't know the "official" colors that Ford calls them. All parts shown are OEM 98+ Ranger parts.
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