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Great idea. I have never seen the rear cargo net. I will need to find one now or make one. Anyway, can you post some close up pictures of the cargo net?
 

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Thanks, I will see about getting a cargo net out of an Explorer or similar at the JY. I should be able to modify it to work.

Thread hijack >> off.
 

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Discussion Starter #324
While it has no action selfies to prove it, the Bronco got its first taste of snow under my ownership, and was more than capable in handling The Great Blizzard of 2018. I locked dem hubs and prepared for the worst...

 

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Discussion Starter #325
A few weeks ago, I solved the dome light wiring "once and for all." In doing so, I discovered a green/yellow wire to the rear connector was completely rotted out, and saw in a schematic that it goes to the interior cargo light.

My base model just came with the plastic cap to fill the topper hole where the interior cargo light's wires split off from the center brake light. I found a Bronco interior light last year and hooked it up, but: a) the functionality was lacking, and b) the switch completely froze up after a use or two. Since 'b' turned out to be a not so isolated incident, I didn't want to bother with finding another donor light and figuring out how to mount it up sans headliner, only to have another one fail. So, I picked up a Windstar light and spliced its connector up to the Bronco's wiring of the same colors (but different terminals), only to have it: a) still not function like I expected, and b) have a funky switch itself that required hand pressure on it to stay activated.

Knowing now that the green/yellow (constant +12V) signal to it was dead, so it could only work in Door Open mode, gave me reason to revisit it. I found another Windstar light with a good, solid switch, and came up with a plan how to mount it up:



There are 4 holes around the light itself that span the round cutout in the topper almost perfectly, so instead of trying to bolt it down to the thin fiberglass, which would be both extremely tricky and potentially fragile, I decided to use metal retainer nut clip thingies that I could slide over the edge of the round cutout. That way, there's very little pressure on the fiberglass. I drilled two holes, unsure whether I would opt to do the other two -- it's a very light light -- and inserted the first metal retainer...not quite thick enough to slip over that last 5% and reach the hole I had just drilled. Doh.

So, I reached into my extensive bag of car parts trickery and used the plastic version that's used for fender liners. That worked perfect, except in lining up the aforementioned 4 holes (plastic surrounding the brass inner plate that makes up the light's circuitry), I was surprised that touching the screw to them would create sparks. I figured that wouldn't change anything, since I was just touching un-powered metal to metal, not shorting out a circuit or anything...I was kneeling on the rubber pad. But, like I always say, I'm an electrical retard, and no matter what I guess in a 50/50 scenario, I'll be wrong 100% of the time... I already had the holes drilled, so I opted to use little slots in the light housing that only go through plastic, and put just two mounting points in. A side benefit is it angles the housing down, instead of being nearly vertical like if I had anchored the original 4 points.

Getting the dome light working was a major relief. Adding in some functional lighting for the cargo area isn't quite at that level, but it sure is nice to be able to illuminate things.
 

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Discussion Starter #326
I settled on a vacuum gauge as the most useful item to fill in one of the two empty spots in my pillar pod. I was thinking of an analog clock, but: a) I'm too far removed from elementary school to be able to tell time quickly enough to not crash, and b) I discovered my stereo has an extremely buried clock option.

Routing the stiff/curly vacuum hose behind the dash and up to the pillar was somewhat challenging, but I eventually found a path up/over/around/behind the ECM and bracing. I ran the hard line to just into the engine bay, then teed it into silicon hose that should handle heat better. I suppose I should take it for a drive now and see if the vacuum is in a good range after taping up the white line on the blower box...



I thought about getting one of the GlowShift replacement pillar pods, being a bit cleaner than my tacked on universal pod and having an open back side for passing wires and hoses through, but realized in reading reviews that they're also add-ons that only look like the '92-96 factory plastic's shape. Lame. That brought me to the more expensive (2-3x the cost) Auto Meter 17303 pillar pod, but the documentation is too vague to tell if it's a full replacement or also a piggyback setup. Anyone happen to know?
 

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I settled on a vacuum gauge as the most useful item to fill in one of the two empty spots in my pillar pod. I was thinking of an analog clock, but: a) I'm too far removed from elementary school to be able to tell time quickly enough to not crash, and b) I discovered my stereo has an extremely buried clock option.

Routing the stiff/curly vacuum hose behind the dash and up to the pillar was somewhat challenging, but I eventually found a path up/over/around/behind the ECM and bracing. I ran the hard line to just into the engine bay, then teed it into silicon hose that should handle heat better. I suppose I should take it for a drive now and see if the vacuum is in a good range after taping up the white line on the blower box...



I thought about getting one of the GlowShift replacement pillar pods, being a bit cleaner than my tacked on universal pod and having an open back side for passing wires and hoses through, but realized in reading reviews that they're also add-ons that only look like the '92-96 factory plastic's shape. Lame. That brought me to the more expensive (2-3x the cost) Auto Meter 17303 pillar pod, but the documentation is too vague to tell if it's a full replacement or also a piggyback setup. Anyone happen to know?
I have an auto meter pod but don't know the number off the top of my head. I don't they make a variety. What do you want to see and I'll snap some pics.
 

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Discussion Starter #328
I have an auto meter pod but don't know the number off the top of my head. I don't they make a variety. What do you want to see and I'll snap some pics.
No pics necessary, but thanks for the offer. Is it a full replacement for the factory pillar trim, or is it just a cover that resembles the shape and bolts onto it (i.e., a universal pod that has been tailored to fit over the factory trim)?

If it's a full replacement, it would be an improvement over what I have now. Otherwise, it's a largely lateral move and waste of $80.
 

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it fits over the factory trim. i've seen glowshift pods before, including a "87-97 FORD F-SERIES F-250 F-350 TRUCK DUAL GAUGE A PILLAR POD MOUNT HOLDER" pod and it was terrible. it didn't even come close to fitting. i returned it and bought the 3 gauge pod from autometer. i actually got it off ebay as a "slightly damaged" one that has the slightest nick on a part of the pod that faces the window.

my autometer pod is pretty good. i took 3 pics even though you said you didn't want them.


 

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Discussion Starter #330
i took 3 pics even though you said you didn't want them.
That's because you da man. :)

That does look like a good fit, and knowing how much you disliked the GlowShift version that I had first considered, says something about being a good critical opinion.

It looks like your pod is angled a bit more toward the driver than mine, so there would be a small gain there to perhaps justify the switch. I was limited by my ability to trim the universal pod to match the tight contour of the pillar. If I rotated it toward the seat too much, I ended up with big gaps along the seams.
 

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That's because you da man. :)

That does look like a good fit, and knowing how much you disliked the GlowShift version that I had first considered, says something about being a good critical opinion.

It looks like your pod is angled a bit more toward the driver than mine, so there would be a small gain there to perhaps justify the switch. I was limited by my ability to trim the universal pod to match the tight contour of the pillar. If I rotated it toward the seat too much, I ended up with big gaps along the seams.
well, i had a 2 gauge pod (partial pillar cover) vs the full pillar 3 gauge pod like the autometer. maybe their 3 pod fits better. i don't know.
 

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Discussion Starter #332
well, i had a 2 gauge pod (partial pillar cover) vs the full pillar 3 gauge pod like the autometer. maybe their 3 pod fits better. i don't know.
Doubtful. The amazon reviews for the Glowshift 3-pod full pillar are full of comments about them being a bad fit and requiring a lot of trimming. That's where I discovered it's just a cover, despite looking like a replacement. I had it on my ebay watch list for months, in case I ever felt compelled to upgrade.

I would actually be happy with a 2-pod partial pillar, since I haven't come up with a pressing need yet for filling the 3rd pod. There's the Auto Meter 15300, which is designed for the F-series according to some listings, but mildly universal according to some reviews...
 

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Discussion Starter #335
Tomorrow will be an interesting test, with heavy rain in the forecast... One of my to-do items has been figuring out why my topper leaks on both sides where it meets the cab. I was at the JY yesterday and grabbed the weatherstrip that goes on the cab side, since it was in good shape and from the same Bronco I had unbolted it many months ago and moved it around to retrieve the mounting clips that mine was missing. Easy access ftw.

I sort of hoped mine was missing altogether, since I didn't think or know to look for it a year ago when putting the clips in, and you can only see the outer topper weather strip when the top is installed. With how easy the cab-side weatherstrip is to remove, it wouldn't be far fetched for someone to have run the truck topless and lost it. Unfortunately, mine was there and in pretty good shape, so that's likely not it. It was a little crusty, so I swapped in the better one. If that results in a dry interior tomorrow, I'll be thrilled. The topper-side outer weatherstrip has a 4" tear in one spot, but that just fits over the inner cab-side piece, so I don't think that's the cause. The outer piece is plenty cruddy in general to be suspect.

I also picked up another set of cab marker lights to mock up, having been underwhelmed by the blocky look of the Ford lights...





Now, I know some people will not be happy at the sight of GM lights, but hear me out...

A) Lethal Weapon and Patsy Kinsit!

B) Being curved, they can sit further forward and not look awkward with the short-ish roof length. They also sit a lot lower as a result.

C) If going with them, I would get the smoked Recon lenses, so they wouldn't actually say GM. :)

The lens has slightly more curve than the front part of the Bronco's roof, but the soft rubber base pad seems to soak that up quite well. They also look to seal bit better. You can see the light socket portion of the rubber base making them stick up in the middle. That part is actually a sealed grommet, so water would have to get into the lens to have much likelihood of leaking, unlike the Ford assembly that relies on the foam base sitting solid on a flat roof to keep the open inner portion sealed. Both of the GM trucks I looked at had water in the lenses from where they cracked around the screws (don't know why they didn't come with washers to spread the stress), so they seem like they'll seal up well with good lenses.

Having said all that, I still can't quite decide if I want to cut holes in the roof... My roof is already fairly buggered from where the service light was mounted and poorly patched (and I suspect that's where a small windshield leak is actually coming from, rather than the area where it drips down that I went over with windshield urethane unsuccessfully), making the decision a little easier.

I should pull a visor and double check that there's enough gap between the two roof layers to put screws in that close to the windshield header...
 

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Discussion Starter #336
Tomorrow will be an interesting test, with heavy rain in the forecast...
Good news so far. Lots of wind and rain this morning, and I don't see any water getting in on either side. Looks like either the old cab-side weatherstrip was bad or not seated properly.
 

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@fodder, good news on the topper not leaking.

If you want to make (more) holes in your roof then I would install the cab marker lights.
 

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Discussion Starter #339
I've heard of the top leaking a hundred times over the years but you're probably the first I've ever seen actually have the problem.
I'm honored. :)

If you want to make (more) holes in your roof then I would install the cab marker lights.
Well... Cutting holes is the necessary evil, not the goal. I just really like the way cab lights look at night, but I'm still trying to decide if I like them on the Bronco. It might be the paint scheme, but the side view looks a little awkward still with the topper instead of a pickup bed. I'm tempted to just buy the smoked lenses for mock-up purposes and see what that does visually.
 

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Don't get me wrong. I think it looks good :thumbup but I personally would not do it on MY truck due to the required roof cutting.
 
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