MatraSport Forum

Each model => Rancho => Topic started by: Mark - formerly on December 24, 2007, 10:36:02 pm

Title: Just Purchased 2 Ranchos
Post by: Mark - formerly on December 24, 2007, 10:36:02 pm

I am new to this forum, having just purchased two Ranchos yesterday.

I hav always loved the Rancho since my Dad owned one back in the eighties. I purchased these two examples as I love them so much and know they are getting so so hrd to find now.

Here is the problem....

Both Ranchos need work to go back on the road. Welding, Respray, Mechanics ( although they both do run ) etc etc and as much as I want to do them and get them back on the road ( infact, there is no doubt that I will get them back on the road ) I do not now the first thing about cars !!

Any help on where to start, tips, etc etc very welcome and appreciated !!

I love these cars so much, I have 1982 and a 1984 models and no matter what the costs is, i will put these on the road again, but any help on where to start and how to go about it would be very nicely received.

My only knowledge of vehicles are that of what I do for a living, running an enthusaists website for the 1985 Sinclair C5 Electric Vehicles ( check out my website - )

Great to see thats the Rancho still has its followers, of which i am proud to now be one too, and great to see a forum that exists for these cars too !!


Title: Re: Just Purchased 2 Ranchos
Post by: tmrancho2 on December 24, 2007, 11:20:50 pm
Welcome to the forum Mark, don't forget to get dome pictures up, do you belong to the Matra Enthusiasts Club?

Where to start is a good question that I keep asking myself with mine I've had it 2 years and not got started on it yet but one day.


Title: Re: Just Purchased 2 Ranchos
Post by: Mark - formerly on December 24, 2007, 11:35:52 pm
Hi Martin

Yes, they are the pair off ebay.

They are not too bad actually. Both are fully complete ( although one has all the bits in the boot of it ) and both have the wing mounted spotlights, all the mouldings on the sides etc etc. The Grey one is running and the engine sounds as sweet as a nut. The red one is in good shape too although the engine is in need of replacement.

The let down with them is the interiors, both of them have gone mouldy and faded and just generally disgusting in every way ! - The seats will need to be re-upholstered as well as the headlinings and door cards, I am lucky in the fac that my wifes parents do this for as living and will sort it all out for me - i hope !!

Cant wait to get the first one on the road, which will probably be the grey one to start with, as this runs very well and really only needs a small amount of welding and a respray to get it sorted out along with a damn good service !!

I paid 350 for the pair, and as I have 3,000 set aside to get the pair on the road, I should have enough funds to complete the task of getting them both done to a reasonable standard, I hope.

Great forum by the way, so glad it exists !!


Title: Re: Just Purchased 2 Ranchos
Post by: tmrancho2 on December 24, 2007, 11:42:43 pm
Glad they are going back on the road Mark, as you probably have read there is only supposed to be 10 left on the road in the UK!

That was cheap for the pair of them, if I had the space I would have had them but alas other projects on the go and having one Rancho already it wasn't going to happen, there was a Rancho in a scrap yard with an excellent interior I got some other bits of it.

Good luck with the resto and keep us posted.

And don't forget to join the club we need more rancho's.

P.S loving the C5 site.

Title: Re: Just Purchased 2 Ranchos
Post by: tmrancho2 on February 01, 2008, 09:50:07 am
Mark's two Rancho's I'll let him add the detail.



Title: Re: Just Purchased 2 Ranchos
Post by: Mark - formerly on February 01, 2008, 11:09:35 am
Thanks for putting the pics on for me Martin.

The above pics are my two Ranchos. The first one, the red one, is the one that I am restoring and the second one, the grey one, is the donor car. The donor car is really past saving as the rust has basically killed it. Its a shame, a BIG SHAME, as my first thoughts of it when I first got it was that it was not too bad, but the bulkhead is almost non existent and the only sound piece of the underside is the rear floor ( which is lucky as I plan to cut this section out for welding into the other one !!  ). However the Red one looks alot worse than it is, and looks a real mess at the moment, but its not too bad underneath. It needs welding to the rear floor and some chassis welding at the back, but the rest is pretty sound and the bulkhead is as solid as the day it was new !!

The pic was taken "half way through" removing the roof, you will see that when the pics were taken the front section of the roof had already been removed.

Some of the fibregalss panels ( notable on the drivers door ) are damaged but luckily enough, I have all the panels from the grey car safely stored away and they are in perfect condition. The only parts I will need that I do not have between the two cars are the two rear side panels that make up the complete rear bumper.

I quite like the pics of the red car as it looks such a mess, so the before and after pics should be amazing !!


Plans -

The Red car is being restored to be totally original, the only thing that will not be original will be the colour as it will be resprayed in Ford Radiant Red. I think this colour will suit it and it just so happens I have 5 litres of the paint here already. I will also be fitting alloy wheels to it from a Fiat which I am sure are going to fit it just fine ( I have the wheels here but not tried them yet so will try them on the car later today or over the weekend ).

The grey car will be pretty much demolished by the time I have taken the parts I need. The grey car is going to be donating its completer interior, ie, seats, trim, dashboard, etc etc. Its also donating a big parts of the rear floor which I will be cutting out to weld into the red one. Also, its donating all its black trims and arches, the roof rack and the rear body ( as the rear body on the red one is spilt in places ). I will also be using the engine out of this one.

However, there will still be parts left over after I have taken what I want, so if anyone out there needs a part for their own Rancho restoration, I will happily let you have the parts of this grey Rancho free of charge to help you get another Rancho on the road.

Lastly, just want to say a big thanks for David, the spotlights, rear luggage cover etc arrived safe and sound and I will get payment off asap, sorry for the delay, just been so so busy with my C5 work.

In the meantime, if any Matra expert can see anything about my Ranchos in the photos that look unusual or anything please let me know !!!


I am very new to restoring cars, I am only just learning how to weld and I have only resprayed one car before now, so its going to be alot of learning as I go along. I am in the lucky posisition to have a very experianced car restorer ( my mate Stuart ) who is going to help me every step of the way, so it should all work out ok !!

I will ask Martin to post more pics for me as the Rancho starts to "change" as I can not seem to load the pics up myself. I will be working on the Rancho for a few hours a day. I hope to get the Rancho ready for the summer, dont know how optimistic this is as I have never done a full job on a car before, but thats what I am hoping - as I would like to get it on the road in time for the Matra meeting in October.

Thats enough of my waffle for now !!