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I purchased my 97 with no spare tire. I recently bought me a junk yard wheel and put a tire on it and now want to mount it underneath but there isn't anything there to mount to, just a thin sheet of metal protecting the tank. I have no problem fabricating something to hold the wheel up in there probably like a Chevy with the metal arm that you unbolt on one side to lower the wheel.

BUT, I'd like to know what the factory set up is like and I don't know a single person who ownes a 97 and don't really want to frequent the car lots or dealerships (time constraints). Guy at the junk yard didn't have one and told me they use a cable that will rust out and drop the wheel going down the road.

No jack either, I assume the jack mounts on the passenger side fender well?

Can someone explain this or have a picture?
 

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All that holds the tire up is a tire carrier that swings down after you unscrew a nut far enough to take it off. As far as a cable system they didn't come on the Fords until 99. There use to be a write up where somebody made a H frame and bolted a cable winch from a 99 to raise and lower the tire. If you look hard enough you should be able to find a carrier in the junk yard since they used the same one for years up to the 97's. As far as the jack it mounted on the passenger fender well along with the lug wrench. The jack crank was on top of the radiator support.

Jim
 

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LMC Truck also has them. Look at the bottom right hand side of the link.

Jim
 

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I just made one for mine. Used long galvanized bolts that the local electric utility uses for mounting hdwr on poles. that stuff never rusts. i used a piece of sign pole that is sort of a C channel with holes in it, also galvanized. welded a couple of pieces of the c in the middle to go up thru the rim, some tabs on the nuts to hold them from spinning and up it went into the factory holes. been there for years, even on and off a couple times for fuel tank repairs. :sneaky:

good luck
 

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Believe it or not back then the spare tire and/or carrier was an OPTION. When I ordered my 96 you could get nothing (standard) or a carrier with no spare tire/wheel or the whole works.
 

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Believe it or not back then the spare tire and/or carrier was an OPTION. When I ordered my 96 you could get nothing (standard) or a carrier with no spare tire/wheel or the whole works.
I took door #2....carrier & a bare wheel. It was just stupid what FMC thought that fifth tire was worth!
 

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I just got mine mounted underneath a couple weeks ago. I got everything off a 95 F-150 and it fits perfectly. The plastic center piece that holds the rim to the arm is made for both 1/2 ton and our rims. There's holes in the frame for where the "nuts" go (like a big body nut). You'll be able to see where when you hold everything up.
 
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