My name's Greg and I have a 1991 2WD 2.3L 4-Banger Ranger. She's an old, dented, beat up farm truck with 190K miles, but I love her to death. It's amazing the bond you can get with a vehicle, especially when they get you out of some hairy situations. I've sped up a steep dirt incline with 3 days worth of camping gear and a dead elk in the back, and gone down some 4X4 trails I probably shouldn't've and had to turn around in 3+ feet of mud.
She's so reliable and she always gets me where I need to go and then back home. I wouldn't trade her for anything.
She's taken on a personality within my social life as well, with my friends having various positive nick names for her. They've just seen the stuff I've been able to get through completely stock without so much as a hiccup and their jaws always drop. They always want to take her hunting rather than their monstrous Chevy's or Broncos [The 30 miles to the gallon doesn't hurt.
Suffice it to say I love my Ranger, and by proxy all Rangers in general.
My first vehicle was an '86 V6 2WD Ranger I drove all around the farm when I was 14. It was a cattle ranch and those cows go out there in the Oregon winters and sink 1' deep with each hoof and when a whole herd does it...it makes it treacherous terrain. But, that little Ranger got me all over out there, wherever I needed to be or haul to take care of stuff and from then on I was sold (It also taught me to know my vehicle, pick my battles, and how to drive off-road with a load).
So, enough background. Currently I'm in the process of restoring a '46 Willys Jeep to stock conditions. Just did the overhaul and the brakes. I have a soft spot for old flat-fenders, too, but I won't go into it.
I was in the USAF, I trained in computers and spent most of my adult life working with them until I switched to journalism (weird, I know). Then the other week I had an epiphany and decided I was going to be a mechanic. It's the one thing I always love doing day in and day out and my current job is such a stressful grind, I had to get out of it. Journalists don't get to go home at 5, frequently they don't get to go home if they want to get the good scoop and turn their name into a brand and a career. I just want to clock in, work with my hands, and clock out where no one looks at me sideways if I swear.
So, I'm pretty good at reading the Chilton's or Hayne's guide and figuring out what I need to figure out, but all this performance stuff I'm starting to look into I don't know much about. So I'm hoping I can get the advice and recommendations from the pros here and someday, know what I'm talking about and share it. ^_^ And uh, looking forward to get to know the rest of you guys and gals as well.