Ford Ranger clutch problem

I have a 1996 Ford Ranger with a 3 liter v6 and standard 5 speed transmission. It has been driven very little over the last two years because of illness and has less than 21K miles. There is an intermittent
problem with the clutch where after about one hour of driving the clutch cannot be pushed to the floor. The truck will not move while this problem is present. It is possible to shift through all gears without depressing the clutch which leads me to believe that the clutch has not been released from its engaged position. After about two to three hours, the clutch then works fine and the truck can be driven again. In every case the truck was parked and left for a period of days. Ford replaced the sensor that rides on the plastic rod attached to the clutch pedal and this did not solve the problem. I would appreciate any information as to what the correct resolution could be.
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veryoldman wrote:

The Ranger has a hydraulic clutch if I remember my 95 correctly.
I think the fluid return port in the clutch master cylinder is blocked- fluid can go out of the master cylinder but not get back in. So what happens is the slave cylinder gets pumped full of fluid and stays extended, keeping the clutch disengaged (the pressure plate is not clamping the clutch disk to the flywheel). After a while the fluid leaks back into the master cylinder and the clutch works again.
Either the fluid return port is blocked by congealed brake fluid, or the clutch pedal mechanism isn't letting the master cylinder piston return all the way back to its rest position.
I would start by flushing and thoroughly cleaning the clutch master cylinder, taking special care to observe whether the return port is blocked or not, either by crud or by the mechanism that connects the pedal to the m/c not letting the m/c piston return all the way to its normal rest position.
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wrote:

the m/c and slave cyl line has a connector i bet its defective if m/c not fully pluged in it will give same symptoms h u r c
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@hotmail.com says...

Same problem I posted in April on alt.trucks.ford (I think) with my 95 Ranger 4cyl. The dealer tells me it's the slave cylinder and it must have the transmission dropped to fix. I have heard that the plastic body slave cylinders have premature wear and can cause weird problems.
I could actually pump-up the system such that the clutch pedal was jammed at the top, and the clutch reservoir level was low. When I stomped the clutch pedal real hard it broke free and the reservoir was back to normal. At other times after driving awhile, the clutch pedal would stick part way up, I could then most times get it to release by putting the transmission in neutral and stomping/popping the clutch several times to free it. But the problem keeps comming back.
Guess it pays to lurk here, maybe my question is finally answered. I couldn't get any answers on the ford forum http://www.fordforums.com/index.php either.
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