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    Bruce: the early years

    I couldn't leave my old friend Bruce, the original trail blazer, out of the picture. I decided to dig WAY back into the archives to create a little history of the ever ongoing build of the bronco that has ever been known as "Bruce" although this is an ongoing build I really do plan on "finishing" this build by the end of the summer with some simple additions to the cage. Except for maybe some tires and beadlocks down the road, I will be ready to call this project officially done since I believe I am as far as I can go without completely building another vehicle.

    Here is a trip in the WAY BACK machine. This is the oldest photo I could find and is pretty close to the way I picked it up at the used car dealer in 1994 or so. It came with a strong 390 engine and a mild 2" lift with 31" tires and a weenie ttb front axle. We still took it in the hills, and we were cool!

    The first "mod" I did was a 6" pro comp lift and some 33" tires. Yea baby, we totally drove up that dirt! That is Shelly in the cab.

    Here is a picture of the first official cutting of the sheet metal. Nobody believed that I would actually do it, but I did! I cut a very large hole in the roof because, uh, well I wanted to be cool or something, plus I liked the idea of being out in the elements. I actually did body work way back then before I knew that the body was just going to get in the way.

    Here are a couple pics with an incredibly heavy rack that acted as an anchor and held an additional 5 gallons of fuel on top of the already ginormous capcity in the 30 gallon tank. At this point it did have a lock-rite locker in the rear axle that helped us get around.

    Shelly and I rebuilt the engine with help from her dad and a local machine shop in Salina

    Ok, here are a few pics at the end of what we will call phase one, the early years. It did pretty well taking us around Moab, it was actually quite exciting when the carb would cough out halfway up a hill, or the high stall torque converter would launch us into the next universe without notice. Check out those cool half doors! They kept me in the truck and held my pop. Mike was a good spotter, "dude your hitting a rock!"

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