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  #1  
Old 11-14-2015, 02:32 PM
BigFlash BigFlash is offline
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Default BigFlash's Overland Ranger

Ok, Ive decided i would start a project build thread. Not sure my truck constitutes it but why not. Ive always like the idea of Overlanding. If your not familiar with. "Overlanding is self-reliant overland travel to remote destinations where the journey is the principal goal." The prospect of being able to drive the same vehicle long distances on and offroad and being self sufficient along the way is exciting to me. I did some research and learned a few things about what an overland truck should and shouldn't be. With that in mind i don't want to turn the truck into a wild off road machine, right now i still daily drive this truck 50 miles. Eventually i'll buy a bigger tuck for more cab and tow rating, letting me dedicate this truck to a project truck. But if i built it up with all kinda of crazy mods i'd loose the ability to walk into any parts store and buy replacement parts. Breaking a custom part could ruin a whole trip.

From what I've seen trucks similar to mine will more often than not take me any where I'd really like to go. I don't need to take the rockiest and muddiest of trails just to say i did it. With that being said, thats not gonna stop me from making my truck more capable. I just went to a 31x1050 tire, and a mild t-bar crank. I might crank mine in more, but for now its good, The final result of this truck would probably end up with a 33in tire, but thats a long way off.

Right now i'm focusing on doing simple mods that i like and i think will be effective and a relatively inexpensive, So i started with the new wheels and tires, I just got done finding a permanent home for a High Lift jack, and i'm deciding on a place to mount two jerry cans. Next on the list will be RCI Front and transfer case skid plates, along with trying to find a factory fuel tank plate. From there i don't know the order, but I've been slowly working on a list of things i think would be necessary on an overland truck.

What I've got in mind so far:
Traction aid in the rear, TruTrac?, 31 spline swap? Mechanical locker?
Onboard air
full size spare, stock location? mount in bed?
More recovery gear, (have strap and shackles)
Adequate first aid gear,
Led light bar to replace hellas on front
Body lift to more easily accommodate the next two?(not a fan of body lifts)
Fabricated front winch bumper and rear bumper
Rock Sliders
Camping gear, (already have basics like, a tent, stove, stuff like that)
Take out jump seats to better accommodate in cab storage.


Thats just my short list of things i can think of so far, i haven't actually listed it all out before so there things i'm probably forgetting of never though of in the first place. Thats where you all come in, i'm open to suggestions of a positive variety, ideas and advise, I've done some mild of roading before not alot, next summer i'm hopping to take the truck to rausch creek to see how it does the way it is now, and gain some behind the wheel experience.


Now that I've rambled on for quite a while i owe some pictures. I can't really find any picture from when i bought the truck, Ive owned it for about 6 years and put a little over 50k on in in that time, it looked like this most of that time,



I added the Cb and antenna shortly after buying it, then a little latter on the hellas but thats about it. Then when it needed tires and i went with cragar wheels and BFG at k02.



Then just earlier today, i mounted the high lift jack, i know theres mixed opinions, but i like em, not the most ideal for a mostly stock truck, but they have way more uses than just jacking the truck, plus i think it looks super cool like mounted where it is.







Now in the last pic you can see my two jerry cans sitting there, I like them there, I'm thinking about building a cage like the one below to mount the two cans in and then strapping the cage down, this would make them easily removed, and not take up permanent bed space since i wouldn't carry them unless on a trip, i would also plan on picking up one or two more of the blue and plastic variety for water.



I have done some other minor mods around the truck but i'll save them for later posts, don't wanna cover everything in one post.
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2000 Ford Ranger XLT 4x4 5spd 3.0L V6 4.10s Extended Cab, Throttle Cable Mod, Custom Exhaust, T-bar crank, 31x10.50x15 BFG A/T KO2s, 15in Cragar V5 Wheels, RCI Front and T-Case Skid plates. High Lift Jack Bed Mount, Manual Gages,
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  #2  
Old 11-14-2015, 11:55 PM
UltraHDGames UltraHDGames is offline
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Default Re: BigFlash's Overland Ranger

Truck looks cool and I like the ideas!
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285/75R16 GoodYear Duratracs | 16x8 Pro Comp 7031 | T Bar Crank/Belltech Shackles/AAL | Bilstein Shocks | 4.10s With Rear Torsen Lsd | Mangnaflow Muffler | Black Headlights/Corners with Led Bulbs | Kodiak Led Lighting | Affordable Off Road Winch Front Bumper | Swingout Rear Tire Carrier Bumper | Smittybilt RTT/Custom Bed Cage
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  #3  
Old 11-15-2015, 01:20 AM
Jrowe Jrowe is offline
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Default

Great plan! Excited to see what you end up doing. Ever think about doing a roof tent?
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  #4  
Old 11-15-2015, 07:28 AM
tyler.owens.3781 tyler.owens.3781 is offline
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Default Re: BigFlash's Overland Ranger

If I was you I would stand the cans up. That design would be hard to take the can out where you want them without moving a lot beforehand. Plus the handle would be up. The picture you showed actually has it hinged so it would not work there. Ever consider adding a back up fuel cell instead? You could carry more and keep more bed room which will be a premium when you start adding supplies. Room gets used up quick. You might want to look into a cap as well
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  #5  
Old 01-30-2016, 07:57 AM
BigFlash BigFlash is offline
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Default Re: BigFlash's Overland Ranger

Time for an update, This project is a slow one, since i posted my first post, truck cost me a bunch of money, so it's slowed things down, first someone hit the truck while it was parked in front of my house, didn't leave a not. They crinkled in a good part of the left rear quarter panel. So i had to have that fixed. Next it developed a bad vibration that i couldn't figure out the source of, so it went to shop it ended up needed new wheel bearings in the front. But thats what happens with a 15 year old truck.


It occurred me to that some things i missed from my list i'd like to add
-Paint match truck cap- emphasis on paint match
-Quality Power inverter- run laptop, camera, and various other charger, hard wired,pure sine wave
- Better tool storage, i have most of the tools i would want to carry, just poorly organized.

I did just add led light bar tho. It's just a cheapy from amazon but damn it's impressive, Turn it on a dark road and the headlights and hellas aren't even there. I also changed the hella 700ffs to 500ffs, the scale seemed to be more correct, I didn't get a night picture yet, but i'll probably get some tonight.



I also changed the wiring for the lights, added another circuit, and relocated the switches, best spot i could figure out. Real easy to reach and turn on and off while your driving, the lights on em are kinda bright at night tho. Might color the leds with a sharpie or something of the sort to dim them a little.



Next thing i want to talk about is this gauge pod, its nothing real special, but i went trough 3 oil pressure sending units in less then a month, so i decide manual instrumentation was necessary. I originally just had an oil pressure gauge, but later changed to the three pod, The oil pressure gauge is t-eed into the oil pressure sending unit. The volt gauges is spliced into a switched wire under the dash, and the coolant temp is in a adapter that is spliced into the top radiator hose. Having actual values is rather nice.





Bad news tho, those jerry cans i showed in the first post did not survive the rust removal process, I decided that i give up on them and move on to either new ones, or find some of the same variety that are clean on the inside.

The next update should come soon, as i have placed my order for my RCI skid plates. Was going to wait till my tax return, the aluminum transfer case ones were on 50% off, so i had to jump on it, and i wasn't paying shipping twice.

Anyone have a source for fuel tank skid plates?
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2000 Ford Ranger XLT 4x4 5spd 3.0L V6 4.10s Extended Cab, Throttle Cable Mod, Custom Exhaust, T-bar crank, 31x10.50x15 BFG A/T KO2s, 15in Cragar V5 Wheels, RCI Front and T-Case Skid plates. High Lift Jack Bed Mount, Manual Gages,
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  #6  
Old 06-22-2016, 12:25 AM
Ceezer Ceezer is offline
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Default Re: BigFlash's Overland Ranger

Any updates since January? I'm wanting to get into overlanding and would be using my Ranger as the platform, so I'm looking for ideas.

Mine also currently has a bed cover on it so I'd need to replace that with a cap/topper or remove it and install a rack-mount tent.
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  #7  
Old 07-11-2016, 04:15 PM
BigFlash BigFlash is offline
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Default Re: BigFlash's Overland Ranger

Sorry about the lack of updates, been busy with a new job with alot more hours per week. So the ranger hasn't been getting a whole lot attention. Plus i have a company truck now, which means i drive the ranger maybe 200 miles a month anymore. But Ive been needing to do an update, because thinking back I've done more than i realized to the ranger that i haven't updated you guys on. So i'm gonna work on collecting/ taking picutes. Look to see an update later tonight if i find good enough pictures or in the coming days.

Actually the reason i logged on was because i got the inkling today that i needed to make progress on one of my list items. So I was gonna research onboard air systems people have installed but not convinced thats my next step.
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  #8  
Old 07-11-2016, 06:42 PM
BigFlash BigFlash is offline
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Default Re: BigFlash's Overland Ranger

Ive found a selection of pictures that will sum up what I've done up to this point. Like i said in my earlier posts, Those metal gas cans are done. Happened to tag along to costco the other day, and came across these 5 gallon cans. for about 15 bucks a piece, couldn't beat it. With 10 gallons that nearly doubles my range. And i checked, i can use the included spout to fill straight into the tank. Not sure if i will ever need them but it won't hurt, only plan on having them in the truck if i'm taking a trip.




The next big thing i did several month ago at this point was get skid plates. I ordered them from RCI. I love the front one, seems super tough and give the truck that purpose built look. As for the transfer case skid plate. I wish i would of gotten the steel one. The aluminum just kinda seemed flimsy, but have yet to test with anything other then snow. So we will see.



I don't have any really good picture of them installed. The front one you'll be able to kinda see with the pictures i'm gonna put up next. As for the fuel tank skid, still haven't come across one in the local junkyards. I have a hard time just finding gen 4 rangers, never seen one with factory skids.

The next kinda bigger thing i did was all cosmetic. I deiced the fender flares would look better black. but couldn't bring myself to actually paint them so i used that peelable stuff. So far i'm super pleased with it. It holds up really nicely on the flares. so i decided to do the front bumper and valance.









Next will likely be the rear bumper, then maybe two tone the truck below the body line.

Due to small accident which you can see the aftermath of. I had to replace the front bumper, valance and headlights. Which is why it all got turned black, also why my aux lighting isn't installed anymore. The light bar and hellas are ok, i just got lazy and didn't reinstall them after fixing the bumper. all the wiring is still in place.


Like i was saying, i wanna either add something to the list to check off or check off something already on the list. I was thinking about deciding on an onboard air compressor. and starting the install on that. But maybe you guys think something else on the list is more important? Or you have a suggestion of a system? don't need to run air tool. mostly looking to able to easily adjust tire pressures on the go?

Ive also decided since i don't daily drive the truck anymore. and likely won't ever again. I'm gonna turn the T-bars in farther. I think i did 2 or 2.5 turns the first time around and that got me close to level, I won't max them out. but i'll turn them as far i feel comfortable.
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  #9  
Old 07-11-2016, 07:43 PM
UltraHDGames UltraHDGames is offline
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Default Re: BigFlash's Overland Ranger

Looks much better with the black flares, But it defianly needs at least the hellas put back on, gives it a tougher look imo. I'm going to be getting some metal gas and water cans for my truck in the near future for longer road trips/overland use.

If you decide to get more serious into overlanding a cap makes it much easier storing your gear

Keep up the work
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2006 Ford Ranger FX4 Level 2
285/75R16 GoodYear Duratracs | 16x8 Pro Comp 7031 | T Bar Crank/Belltech Shackles/AAL | Bilstein Shocks | 4.10s With Rear Torsen Lsd | Mangnaflow Muffler | Black Headlights/Corners with Led Bulbs | Kodiak Led Lighting | Affordable Off Road Winch Front Bumper | Swingout Rear Tire Carrier Bumper | Smittybilt RTT/Custom Bed Cage
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  #10  
Old 11-26-2016, 10:55 AM
BigFlash BigFlash is offline
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Default Re: BigFlash's Overland Ranger

Time for an update. I decided to jump into the onboard air system. I picked this pump/compressor combo on ebay. Paid less than 100 bucks. Found it for sale on other retailers for over 300bucks. So I was all excited thinking I got a good deal on a quilty compressor. When it finally came, I was a bit disappointed. It's still rather poor quilty to the point where i not convinced it was a great deal at all. But so far it has survived several empty to full cycles so we shall see how it goes.

The plan I orgianly had in mind was to disassemble it, place the compressor under the hood. Preferably where it could get air from the engine fan. And the tank under the body on the frame somewhere. Well after about 45minutes of tryin to find a creative place to mount the compressor. I gave up. Decided that the portability up the thing was just as usefull has having it mounted onto the truck. If I was running air lockers it would be different. But I just wanna fill tires. So I think it will work out.

I did however remove the regulator since I would have no real use for it. Replaced the regulator with brass HF quick coupler. Since I was at the harbor freight I picked up a 1/4in air line. If I were wanting to run air tools 1/4 would be way to restrictive. But the compressor is small enough that I don't think it will ever affect anything. Plus 25ft of 1/4in takes up considerably less space then 3/8. Also found a tire inflator I had layin in the bottom of my tool box. Didn't really care for it. So I had stopped using it. But it will work perfectly fine for this application. Also has a button that let's air out slowly. Not the perfect solution for airing down but works.

It does however tuck nicely behind the passenger seat with all my other support gear.










Lately I've been thinking more and more about the topper. But I don't think I really want a hard fiberglass top. I've seen some pictures of soft tops that easily remove, fold and store. I would think that would be more my kinda thing but haven't done any research yet as to pricing or if there even any that would fit a Ranger.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-T377A using Tapatalk
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  #11  
Old 11-26-2016, 02:41 PM
Skylark65 Skylark65 is offline
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Default Re: BigFlash's Overland Ranger

cool project, did you ever make it out to rausch creek? that's been on my "to do" list for quite a while.

also how did you have the auxiliary lights mounted in front? I see it looks like they were on some kind of bracket, was it mounted to the bumper or behind the grille?
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  #12  
Old 11-27-2016, 06:59 AM
BigFlash BigFlash is offline
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Default Re: BigFlash's Overland Ranger

Never did make it to Rausch.

The light brackets mounted behind to the back of the bumper. There's two bolts on the back side of bumper that I used I don't have any of the aux lights on anymore. Can't decide if I how I want to mount them. I think I'll get a shorter light bar and mount it behind the grill. I prefer the clean look.

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2000 Ford Ranger XLT 4x4 5spd 3.0L V6 4.10s Extended Cab, Throttle Cable Mod, Custom Exhaust, T-bar crank, 31x10.50x15 BFG A/T KO2s, 15in Cragar V5 Wheels, RCI Front and T-Case Skid plates. High Lift Jack Bed Mount, Manual Gages,
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  #13  
Old 11-27-2016, 08:43 AM
UltraHDGames UltraHDGames is offline
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Default Re: BigFlash's Overland Ranger

I'd say you should get a fiberglass topper instead of soft, its nice to be able to mount a roof basket on top for extended overland trips and it just feels cozy if you choose to setup your sleeping setup in the box
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