Re: Opinions on 95 F350 w 351 motor
Let's take it one at a time, the tranny shifting hard, if you mean that it has a difficult time going into gear, you can try draining it, changing the filter and fluid, but above that, not worth it. Being that it's an F350, it's probably geared low, so there will be some lurching during a gear shift, not much, but more than your average street car.
The temp gauge pegging high when the heat kicks on kind of confuses me as the heat will actually help cool the engine to a small degree. I would question the accuracy of the gauge, but that will require a meter.
Also needing a meter: fuel pump issue as well as the front tank's level.
A new master cylinder will cost between 35 and 60 bucks (at least in upstate NY). The exhaust leak, cost will vary depending on the extent.
If you're still missing on cylinders after plug, cap, and wire change, then you may have some serious issues going on in the block.
If you were looking for a project, it sounds like this could be an excellent choice, but if you are looking for a reliable means of transportation, you can probably buy something that has a lot less problems for what may lie ahead. If the body is intact and the tanks aren't leaking, you my be able to sell it for parts.
Prius repellant, just add gas.