My Mk2 Ford Ranger 2016

Cyberess

Active Member
This is my MK2 build, sort of modelled of My Mahindra build that I did 4 years ago http://4x4earth.com/forum/index.php?threads/mahindra-pik-up-dual-cab-2012.19873/ so I will sort of call that my MK1 build, as I have tried to incorporate as much as I have learnt from my MK1 build into my Ford MK2 Ranger build :).

The process of selecting a Ford Ranger from the base of my build took nearly 6 months, and it nearly ended up being a Amarok, Nissan D23 or even at one stage the latest Hilux, and I finally settled on the Ford.

What I was after at the time of hunting for my new vehicle:
  • A Cab Chassis, as what was central to my build was the alloy canopy and I really did not want to pay for a tub that I would be removing and disposing of.
  • I wanted a base model that has a diff locker as factory standard, I have no idea why some brands only put the diff locker on their top range luxury models, and leave their base models with out a diff locker.
  • Vinyl floors if I get could get it -- I would taken carpet floors if their was no choice but I do prefer easy clean vinyl floor.
  • Had to be a vehicle that would take a easy suspension lift, and has good ground clearance out of the box.
  • I have a preference for 16" rims, as out bush it's just so much easier getting 16" tyres, and replace tyres are usually cheaper.
  • Any colour, as long as it's white -- many due to pin striping hiding ability of white vehicles, and in the heat of Northern Australia, white colour is is a fair bit cooler.
  • A high wadding depth is important to me as well, and checking out if all electrics are mounted up high in the engine bay.
  • Visibility from the drivers seat -- this is was one of the reasons that knocked the Nissan D23 out
  • I wanted a common six stud pattern with the wheels -- not a total necessity but it is something that I did have a preference for.
  • A large dealer network if possible.
  • A price of below $40000 On the road -- yes that is possible with the Ford
What I ended up with
Base-Vehicle01.jpg

A naked PX MK2 Ford Ranger 3.2L 6 speed manual.

FordRanger-PX-MK2-001.jpg

This is how the end build ended up looking with a 50mm lift -- The actual lift ended up being 56mm but I should setting down to 50mm, larger tires, not too crazy tyre size increase of 265/75/16, TJM bar work and a custom built canopy.

Extras and Additions:
  • Snorkel TJM with Wedge Tail Head
  • 9 Inch Screen Android Stereo Navigation System upgrade, as purchased from Aliexpress
  • Windows tinting -- as needed to read all my screens
  • Under Tray Polymate 70Ltr AUX Tank, with it’s own filler, as mounted under tray, and plumb in via the the original fuel tanks breather system.
  • Dash matt
  • UHF radio – ariel as mounted on canopy
  • Dual battery setup, with a Thunder 20A DC to DC charger, that also acts as a MPPT solar regulator
  • Reverse camera with screen replacing the rear view mirror
  • Tow bar TAG – High Clearance for Cab Chassis as purchased off ebay and installed.
  • Winch Dobinson 12000lb with plasma rope as installed by me
  • Tyre upgrade Hercules Terra Trac RS 265/75/16 – (RS = Rough Service) the 265/75/16 Max legal size diameter upgrade, the speedo is now reading about 4 km/h to slow, so I have to be careful – been checked against the GPS
  • Custom Canopy Alloy with side Gull Wing doors flat floor door lip, with spare wheel mount, jerry can holders and with locking that’s wired up to vehicle's central locking
  • TJM XGS Suspension Lift Upgrade – Bit over 50mm lift
  • Brush rails TJM
  • Steel winch bar TJM -- it's a fleet bull bar with out all the plastic crap stuff that used for inserting lights, as it would just end up smashed with the typre of 4WDing that I do.
What I like about the Fleet Bull Bar from TJM
FordRanger-TJM-BullBar-Recovery-Points.jpg

it comes with 8000kg rated recovery points
FordRanger-PX-MK2-002.jpg

The TJM has none of the silly plastic bits that fit fog lamps into to smash
FordRanger-PX-MK2-Terra-Trac-Tires-001.jpg

The tyres used are Hercules Terra Trac RS 265/75/16 – Rough Service Tyres -- well that's the way they were advertised -- time will tell, if they live upto their rough service label.

Hmm this post is getting long, I think I will have the Canopy and the Long Tank in my next post ;)
 

Cyberess

Active Member
The MK2 Canopy build.
FordRanger-PX-MK2-004.jpg

What I wanted was a similar canopy that I used on my Mahindra build, but without the bottom lip, so that it's easy to mount the fridge silde, and for the ease of getting gear in and out of the canopy.
FordRanger-PX-MK2-Canopy-002.jpg

One thing that is different between the Mahindra and the Ford Ranger, is that the slings it's rear wheel springs over the top of the rear axle which is great for ground clearance, but it does make the tray higher and in the case of this canopy build it means that the canopy opening I think is 900mm high where on my old vehicle is was 1000mm, does not sound much but it does make a difference.

I used a local business in Darwin "MBB ToolBox " to build the canopy, and it was up to me to source the components for the central locking and the poly auxiliary fuel tank and how to rig the fuel tank up.
Canopy-Central-locking01.jpg

Canopy-Central-locking02.jpg

Working out the central locking -- Whale Tail Handled locks for the canopy as sourced from UES -- As for wiring up the central locking, I discovered that the Ford Ranger has wiring already there, for doing a electrical remote locking fuel cap, it was that wiring connection that I used for wiring up the central locking for the canopy.
polytank-setup01.jpg

polytank-setup02.jpg

The Poly Tank going in during the build.
FordRanger-PX-MK2-Canopy-003.jpg

I think this is essential, that is setting up a switch as for a warning buzzer as inside the cabin, as to prevent driving off with the canopy door opened, it's just so easy to smash off an forgotten to close canopy door.

Later I will post some pictures of my DC to DC charging system, info of my electrical etc. and info of my 9" Android Nav system but for now this is enough..
 

Cyberess

Active Member
It's time for me to document my 12V DC to DC charging system as well as the electrical system that I have setup on my Ford Ranger.

Ford Ranger DC to DC Circuit Diagram02.jpg


This is sort of a abstract representation of my vehicle DC to DC charging system with solar and winch shown in the diagram up at the front of the vehicle and the most of the gear drawn in the rear of the vehicle.as in the canopy area -- notice how I have drawn in the negative connection from the winch going to the body of the vehicle and not to the negative terminal, it's sort of best practice as from the Fords Ranger Body and Equipment Mounting Manual -- http://www.ford.com.au/owner/body-equipment-manuals

I have designed the system to be able to use both manual direct charging and "DC to DC" charging, via a 3 position battery switch that I obtained from BCF http://www.bcf.com.au/Product/3-position-battery-switch/362960. The idea is that if the DC to DC charging stuffs up and can just switch over to a direct charging system, also I have used very heavy duty cabling between the 2 batteries, something like 16mm as so that I can jumper back to the starter battery from the rear battery.

For the electrical box box I used a modified $15 Tactix Organiser box that I obtained from Bunnings https://www.bunnings.com.au/tactix-16-compartment-organiser-storage-box_p2580700
Electricial-box-open01.jpg

For the DC to DC charging I have used a Thunder 12V DC to DC charger -- http://www.thunderauto.com.au/dcdc-charger/ It's about a 1/3 of the cost of the comparable Redarc product with I think is a bit over priced.

The Thunder 12V DC to DC charger so far has worked quite well, and it also acts as my MPPT solar regulator -- with separate solar connections on the unit. Not bad for a unit that cost me about $230 -- I have wired up separate Anderson plugs at each side of the vehicle so that I can just plug the solar panels straight in.

Some little discoveries that one makes then working on Fords Ranger PX MK2 electrical system, is it uses smaller Micro2 fuses which are not common, and that was a real surprise.

Ford-Ranger-Blade-Fuses01.jpg

In the Photo, the micro2 fuse is the smaller blue fuse -- first up I actually purchase an assortment of the Mini fuses, that is the orange fuse that in the picture -- I discovered that they are useless for the ford as they do not fit. In Darwin I simply couldn't find any auto parts shops that stocked the Micro2 fuses, I tried Repco, Supercheap, and even some auto elecs, and no one stocked what looks like a fairly common fuse. I ended up purchasing a assortment of the micro2 fuse online from ActionAuto http://www.actionauto.com.au/catalog/fuses/blade.html, so be warned if going bush with a Ford Ranger MK2 purchase some of the micro2 fuses as spares before you leave.

Winch-ISOLATOR01.jpg

Just thought that I would include a photo of the winch isolator switch.

Cheers
 
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Cyberess

Active Member
My after market Android Sat navigation and stereo system
ford-ranger-dash-before-new-nav-device01.jpg

What the standard Radio Stereo looks like on a XL base model Ford Ranger PX MK2, -- Actually it's a good thing for me as I didn't want to be locked in with the standard nav system that comes with the higher models of the Ford Ranger.
What I have now installed..
Ford Ranger Andriod Nav Stereo002.jpg

It's a 9 Inch Screen Android Stereo Navigation System -- It completely replaces the Volume and the radio tuning nobs -- it actually completely transforms the look of the dash.
As I am right into my 4WD driving the main reason of the selection of this unit as it ran Android, and that I can use my favourite offroad nav app, Locus Pro http://www.locusmap.eu/ It's available through the Android App store or "Google Play" and the pricing is about $9 -- it's the best $9 that I have ever spent.
Ford Ranger Andriod Nav Stereo005.jpg

Locus Pro with a Offline Sat Image loaded with a track as recorded on the system..
Ford Ranger Andriod Nav Stereo004.jpg

What the track menu looks like..

Ford Ranger Andriod Nav Stereo003.jpg

Geo Australia 250K Topo Map -- It's the same as what comes on the Hema units, I also have 100K Maps installed.. as converted from old Oziexplorer that I had.
Ford Ranger Andriod Nav Stereo001.jpg

For my street Navigation I Sygic -- I reckon it the best -- the unit did come with IGO, but I own Sygic, with is better with the way it looks and with it navigation.

Now fitting this unit is not for the faint harted, lucky for me I found some fitting instructions on Youtube
Fitting the unit took me about 3 hours, so it's not a real simple task. as the whole dash needs to be pulled apart to fit the unit.

Till next time when I can think of something else to show off about my Ranger :)
 

Cyberess

Active Member
Certainly -- The exact 9 Inch Screen Android Stereo Navigation System was Aliexpress purchase..
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/S16...GHz-ROM-16GB-Android-4-4-Car/32692053481.html
Checking my records I purchased the unit late July for AU$589.18 including the shipping

I see that Digoptions appears to be selling the same or similar unit which could be worth considering for $720 plus shipping
http://www.digoptions.com.au/for-ford-ranger-mk2-px-15-gps-bluetooth-car-player

And Rangermods -- who produced that youtube installation video are selling a similar unit for $1200 plus shipping
https://rangermods.com/products/px-mk2-10-1-screen-andriod-multimedia-system-gps

and for those who like to do research the units are a S160 Android unit -- More info can be found at https://www.roadnav.com/forum/firmware-aa/s160-android as for firmware updates etc..
 

bangers85

New Member
Hi Cyberess,
Cheers for the great write up! I enjoyed reading about your setup! I am from Darwin also and have recently gone to see Frank from MBB Toolbox for a quote on a lift off canopy for my PX Ranger. I really like the idea of your remote actuators on your canopy, can I ask, do you have a picture of the cables at your fuel fill point? I am just trying to ID the cables, I have a custom steel tray on mine already so there is no pop out fuel cap and I am pretty certain the cables are just sitting there in a plug which is not being used. I am going to pop into UES tomorow morning actually and check out those whale tails.
Also, I have been looking for a reliable head unit and fascia to replace the crappy standard PX MK1 XLT unit. How do you rate the perofrmance and speed of your android unit? Is it fully intergrational with your blue tooth and ford sync? Including steering wheel controls? There are a couple of suppliers which sell similar if not the same units with the PX1 fascia.
Cheers
 

Cyberess

Active Member
Hi Cyberess,
Cheers for the great write up! I enjoyed reading about your setup!
Glade you have enjoyed my write up, actually I have been thinking of updating the write up, as I'm now in Port Macquarie these days, and have towed a caravan 1/2 across the country, and I have done quite a bit of 4WD driving, and the PX2 has been an excellent vehicle.
I am from Darwin also and have recently gone to see Frank from MBB Toolbox for a quote on a lift off canopy for my PX Ranger. I really like the idea of your remote actuators on your canopy, can I ask, do you have a picture of the cables at your fuel fill point? I am just trying to ID the cables, I have a custom steel tray on mine already so there is no pop out fuel cap and I am pretty certain the cables are just sitting there in a plug which is not being used. I am going to pop into UES tomorow morning actually and check out those whale tails.
I am not sure with PX is the same as the PX2, but you should find a cable with a plug on it, if your model never had a tub on it, there could be a cap on the plug.
Also, I have been looking for a reliable head unit and fascia to replace the crappy standard PX MK1 XLT unit. How do you rate the perofrmance and speed of your android unit? Is it fully intergrational with your blue tooth and ford sync? Including steering wheel controls? There are a couple of suppliers which sell similar if not the same units with the PX1 fascia.
Cheers
My head unit, has been quite good, it's gives excellent sound sound, and people even ask me if I have a sub woofer, but I have just the standard speakers that came with the PX2, what I can say say, is the the PX2 comes with an excellent speaker setup, it certainly does make my sound system sound very good, even though I have the base model of the PX2. The speed of the Android system, is quite good, but cold startup could be a bit quicker, it's still acceptable. Every thing works, such as blue tooth, GPS etc.. but no Ford Sync, I mean I don't I am missing anything by missing Ford Sync.

The system I have does have some bugs though, one bug as from starting the vehicle, the radio will switch on, onto my favourite radio station then after 3 minutes of driving the radio will just switch itself to another station, I will just press to back to my favourite station, and it will be all good, till the next time I start the vehicle.
 

cam04

Well-Known Member
We used the last series of terra trac mt's with fairly good results on the work utes a few years back, especially considering the buy price. Are the new ones OK?
 

bangers85

New Member
Cheers for the reply Cyberess. Good call on moving out of Darwin, its a beautiful spot to tour and holiday but its wearing thin on me now also.
Ok so I am confident i have found the plug you mention, it is between the rear of the cab and the headwall of my tray. I'll pull the old multimeter out and give it a test.

Shame your not up here, it would of been to have a look at your rig in person. Although given the car theft up here I wouldnt blame you if you declined!
Cheers again for the info mate! Happy touring!
 

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Cyberess

Active Member
We used the last series of terra trac mt's with fairly good results on the work utes a few years back, especially considering the buy price. Are the new ones OK?
It's the RS = Rough Service tyres that I have -- Hercules Terra Trac RS, sort of a cross between AT and MT, but probably closer to AT. I have now 13000km on them, so far so good, been through all sorts of 4WD and on road driving. The tyres are a bit noisy , grip off road has been good, and have done plenty of mud and sharp rock, the tyres are showing chipping though -- looking how the tyres are, and the way I have been treating the tyres, I expect the tyres will do something like 30000km, could be more now that I am in a cooler climate , but it I do get 30000kms out of my tyres I will be happy.
 

Cyberess

Active Member
Cheers for the reply Cyberess. Good call on moving out of Darwin, its a beautiful spot to tour and holiday but its wearing thin on me now also.
Ok so I am confident i have found the plug you mention, it is between the rear of the cab and the headwall of my tray. I'll pull the old multimeter out and give it a test.

Shame your not up here, it would of been to have a look at your rig in person. Although given the car theft up here I wouldnt blame you if you declined!
Cheers again for the info mate! Happy touring!

Yeah that does look like the plug, and that does look be the cable that will do your central locking for your canopy. -- Yeah I was easy to find in Darwin as with the Top End 4WD Club.
 

Cyberess

Active Member
My Ranger is back in the Territory just over a year old and with 20000 klms on the clock so I thought I will give a bit of a update.
Ford_Ranger_camping_Canopy001.jpg

It's done plenty of camping and 4WD driving -- even traveling with 5 adults at times.
Ford_Ranger_Towing001.jpg

Towed a Caravan across NT, QLD and NSW and back while I was contracting in NSW. I have to say the Ranger is a excellent tow vehicle, while it's a manual, it's a very easy drive for towing, gear ratios make sense, the idle up on clutch release is excellent, and it gave great economy, even towing.

Last week I nearly lost my drinking water containers
Water_Jerry_container_holder001.jpg

While driving down "4WD Lichfield Daly Railroad Rd" -- one of Litchfield's 4WD tracks to Surprise Falls, while driving over a large mound, the containers actually flew out holders, I didn't even know that I have lost the containers, until I saw them on the side of the track, while I was returning on the same track, when I saw them I thought hey I got containers just like that, till I realised that they were my containers, so these will get strapped down for all my future 4WD trips, quite amazing the containers were quite O.K. despite their fall.

Other than nearly losing the containers, having the contaners on the back is quite a good setup,
Hand_Pump001.jpg
Hand_Pump002.jpg

I just use a hand pump, with a short hose, and drop it in the container, and use a ocky to hold it down, and it's just so easy to pump the water, before I tavel, I just remove the pump, put the cap on the container. If you do follow what I have done make sure that you get the plastic body Breha Hand Pump -- Do not get the alloy body hand pumps, as they are crap, I actually went through 2 alloy bodied pumps before I realised.

How the Hercules Rough Service Tyres are traveling considering the Caravan towing and rough 4WD Driving.
Hercules_Rough_Service_Tyres.jpg

I feel a bit mixed about these, they are tough as nails, but they have been suffering a bit of chipping, I reckon I will get about 25000 klms out of these tyres.

My TJM side steps have been coping it a bit.
TJM_Ford_Ranger_Side_step001.JPG

I dropped into TJM and asked them if I could just buy one side bar, and they said no, they only sell them in a complete set - which is a bit of a piss off.

Something I did get myself is a 63L Ryde Rider Drawer Fridge.
Ryde_Rider_Drawer_Fridge004.jpg

Got it for $893 on special on one of Supercheap Sales, and I have to say it's a great fridge use, just so easy to get to your food and drink, and it really does suit my canopy setup. it's much lager than my Waeco CFX65 fridge --

Ryde_Rider_Drawer_Fridge002.jpg

O.K. the milk carton just get a bit swished, as either of the 2 layers of this fridge is just not tall enough, but it's so easy to get to stuff that in the fridge it's forgiven :)
I had to modify the original Waeco Fridge slide, to make it work..
Fridge_Slide_Mod001.jpg

I cut the end off with a angle ginder with a cutting disk.
Fridge_Slide_Mod003.jpg

Made up some anchor points, and rejigged the back of the slide draw, to lengthen.
Fridge_Slide_Mod002.jpg

The finished result.

O.K. that it for the moment :)
 

hockayak

New Member
It's time for me to document my 12V DC to DC charging system as well as the electrical system that I have setup on my Ford Ranger.

View attachment 43302

I have designed the system to be able to use both manual direct charging and "DC to DC" charging, via a 3 position battery switch that I obtained from BCF http://www.bcf.com.au/Product/3-position-battery-switch/362960. The idea is that if the DC to DC charging stuffs up and can just switch over to a direct charging system, also I have used very heavy duty cabling between the 2 batteries, something like 16mm as so that I can jumper back to the starter battery from the rear battery.

The Thunder 12V DC to DC charger so far has worked quite well, and it also acts as my MPPT solar regulator -- with separate solar connections on the unit. Not bad for a unit that cost me about $230 -- I have wired up separate Anderson plugs at each side of the vehicle so that I can just plug the solar panels straight in.

Cheers

Cyberess,
Im really enjoying your blog about your Ranger set up. We recently got a new Ranger and looing to kit up a bit too, we're total novices to most things 4x4 but you got to start somewhere i guess. Our first plan is dual battery set up + fridge. Your wiring diagram looks the business, but what is the intention of the overload? I mean, how did you know it should be a 200A from main battery to switch, then 30A from dc-dc to 2nd battery and 60A to the 12v connection bus? Is this info specified? I too saw that Ford repeatedly recommend connecting neg to the body/chassis and saw that it should have some kind of overload between batteries, but how did you know which one? Finally, just wondering why you used fuses for the 30A not trips like you did on the 200A and 60A overloads?

This is a really good set up and to be honest, i feel like just following your lead! Any advice you can give would be great to a novice like me. Cheers, Hockayak
 

Cyberess

Active Member
Hi Hockayak,
Good questions about about my overload sizing and why i have gone the way that I have with my dual battery setup.

Just a quick disclaimer here, anyone is welcomed to follow what i have done, but please make sure that you do your own research, as I will share my logic but it could be wrong in some areas -- so please do take care, as anything that followed via my postings is done at your own risk.

O.K. that disclaimer out of the way :) here's my logic -- The reason for 200a overload, is just to mainly guard from a total short, ie. bruising of the cable due to the roughness of some of my trips, and the fact when both batteries could be connected directly via the manual 3 way battery switch, I might be able to start the vehicle from the rear battery, although 200amp may be a bit small for this, there should be some juice in the front battery and if i have both batteries connected it could help with the winching as well. The other reason for 200A it's largest overload that I can easily purchase for a reasonable price and should suit the cable sizing, connecting both batteries directly.

The sizing of the 60A overload is related to using large 12V air compressors, I found 30A was a bit small and would trip when pumping tyres from the the external Anderson plugs, 60A was the next easy available sizing and seems to work well for this application.

The reason for overloads rather than fuses, overloads are just so easy to reset, and I don't need to carry spare fuses.
Cheers
 

Cyberess

Active Member
About a month ago my Dobinson 12000lb winch failed, sort of happened on a trip where I was Tail End Charley, going slow, probably not concentrating, and the rear of my vehicle sort of slipped into a greasy hole, not a biggie, I just winch myself out before anyone notices ;) but pulled the winch out, connected to a tree, and just click, click,click :oops: oh no go.. not good, had to radio for a quick pull out, and the rest of the group came back with cameras ablaze, they have never seen the Ranger stuck :mad:.

O.K. time to fix the Winch, it's only about 15 months old
Dobison-12000-wintch008.jpg

Before I pulled the winch out I removed the control box, (had water ingress) and replaced the solenoid and moved the solenoid to a new location..
I moved the solenoid behind the grill high under the bonnet.
Dobison_12000_wintch003.jpg

Made up a wooden mount block and mounted
Solenoid_relocation0004.jpg

Solenoid_relocation0006.jpg

Used Stainless bolts and Nuloc
Solenoid_relocation0003.jpg

As can seen through the grill
Solenoid_relocation0007.jpg

Hopefully when the Solenoid get wet now it will just dry, an not just sit in a control box with water in it.
With all the fix up with the solenoid the winch the winch it self was still no go.
So pulled the winch apart.
Dobison_12000_wintch006.jpg

Dobison_12000_wintch007.jpg

Defiantly a case of water ingress so I pulled it all apart as the brushes has seized cleaned a freed up the brushes and got rid of the rust.
What surprised me why did this happen, it's actually a well sealed winch with a breather on top
Dobison_12000_wintch002.jpg

On further examination, the actual back plate through the motor housing is held together via 2 bolts, but there is 4 threaded holes to allow the motor to be indexed 90° and only 2 holes would be used and 2 spare threaded holes that allow water in -- how silly it's really a design fault. The fix, block off the 2 spare hole by cutting a threaded bar and using a stud lock tight.

Dobison_12000_wintch005.jpg

The Winch back in the cradle all working :) -- notice the breather on the side -- It was late last night and I blocked the wrong holes :( but at least it's all sealed up now ;)

Something else I done was to replace the winch remote controls and I purchased a couple of long range remotes that can operate 150ft according to the ebay seller, and it does work a long way away from the vehicle, and good new, very responsive as a lot of winch remotes are very laggy.
 
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