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  #1  
Old 11-18-2018, 11:15 PM
Jp7 Jp7 is offline
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Default custom A-pillar & lower center dash Gaugepod build & install

I decided to add 4 gauges to my 2006 B-series. oil pressure, fuel pressure, vacuum and voltage.

I bought some spare parts (2 drivers side a-pillars), and I went to a local junk-yard to see what I could do in terms of replacing the lower center dash insert. From the factory this came with an ashtray, and the "airbag deactivation switch" for the passenger side. I don't ever have passengers, and I could care less if this feature works or not. (I'm actually considering removing the airbag all together- but that's a different story.) I also don't need an ashtray (don't smoke). I brought home some similar panels from junk trucks.

I took a pod from another car, did some cutting and modifying and taped it on a factory a-pillar


trying to get a good alignment




once I was happy with the aim, I glued them down temporarily


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next, I wanted to replace my ashtray and airbag switch with gauges. I needed to modify the circuit so the RCM wouldn't disable the airbag system with the switch removed.
Here is the center portion for under the dash. I was replacing the airbag switch, so I needed to reverse engineer the way the RCM interprets the switch, and feed it a signal it was happy with. After looking at the tech schematic and taking some measurements, I went with 2 1000 ohm resistors. I wired them into the hard-shell so I could fool the RCM into thinking the switch was still there.






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I then started the fiberglass process. First felt to give it shape, then fiberglass for strength..

Lots of sanding and body work here....








more sanding and cutting




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Next, after it was pretty smooth, I started with Bondo filler, and then I moved to the super smooth dolphin glaze filler....











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Next I took a brake to set up my sending units. I used a simple 90 degree street elbow to attach into the block and set it up so I could run both the factory oil pressure switch, and a 1/8ntp pressure transducer.







next, I had to modify the fuel rail so I could get fuel pressure. I grabbed some of the end-caps from similar 4.0L fuel rails at my local junk yard. These are some sort of brass/bronze material with a plating. I used my tig welder to braze a nut on the end so I could read fuel pressure at the fuel rail. I replaced the factory shrader fitting.





my first few attempts were really bad!


I ended up taking a slightly different route...



I tested the fitting at 110 PSI in a bucket of water- I originally had a small pinhole leak, but I fixed it. I then installed the vacuum sensor (sorry no picture)

I then went back to doing the body stuff. I used a 2K urethane based activated primer. Several coats, sanding between each.










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Then I used a SEM texture spray on the a-pillar, and a dupont vinyl matching OEM finish paint.








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I painted the center lower dash piece with chromabase OEM exterial metallic (dark shadow grey) and then USC "glamour" urethane clear....
The small hole on the pod was so I could access the screw hole (you can't really see it when installed) I put a pvc pipe there as a guide when I'm screwing it down.








Had to cut a hole and use a grommet to route the wires. (I have so many wires coming in now)


Final results. I think the white LEDs match my re-designed LED cluster that I did in 2014. Everything is white with red needles.














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Looking for a professional retrofitter to add HIDs or LEDs to your Ranger? PM me if your looking to have work done, and have cash to spend.

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I'm dying to see this at night. Someone go tell the sun to give up already.
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Originally Posted by beef08 View Post
Your the man, you bring our dreams to a reality within the lighting spectrum
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Jp7 you always do AMAZING work! Hats off to you sir
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People so often confuse "hating" with "knowing better".
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  #2  
Old 11-20-2018, 05:01 AM
skirbykat skirbykat is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 22
Default Re: custom A-pillar & lower center dash Gaugepod build & install

That turned out awesome!

Sent from my XT1585 using Tapatalk
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  #3  
Old 11-20-2018, 06:39 AM
Logan03CO Logan03CO is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2010
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Default Re: custom A-pillar & lower center dash Gaugepod build & install

A-pillar & lower center dash Gaugepod build & install

Another great project out of you.

Looks amazing, great job
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  #4  
Old 11-20-2018, 02:47 PM
Jp7 Jp7 is offline
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Default Re: custom A-pillar & lower center dash Gaugepod build & install

Quote:
Originally Posted by skirbykat View Post
That turned out awesome!

Sent from my XT1585 using Tapatalk
Quote:
Originally Posted by Logan03CO View Post
A-pillar & lower center dash Gaugepod build & install

Another great project out of you.

Looks amazing, great job
Thank you- I have some extra a-pillars I did not need for older trucks if anyone wants to give this a shot. I have no need for them and I am getting rid of them cheap.

Drivers side A-pillars (for custom gauge pods)
__________________
Looking for a professional retrofitter to add HIDs or LEDs to your Ranger? PM me if your looking to have work done, and have cash to spend.

Quote:
Originally Posted by FireRanger View Post
I'm dying to see this at night. Someone go tell the sun to give up already.
Quote:
Originally Posted by beef08 View Post
Your the man, you bring our dreams to a reality within the lighting spectrum
Quote:
Originally Posted by BCobe View Post
Jp7 you always do AMAZING work! Hats off to you sir
Quote:
Originally Posted by FireRanger View Post
People so often confuse "hating" with "knowing better".
Reply With Quote
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