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What did you do to your Ranger today? (Part Deux!)


Rick W

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Update. I just got off the phone with the regional tech guy with Interstate Batteries. Great guy. I pretty much went through all these postings in our discussion, and he was suspicious of the marine battery coupled with the car battery, but he thinks the main problem was simply that the group 65 under the hood was a bad battery.

He said if you have a bad battery, it will definitely cap the charging of the good battery if they’re wired in parallel. He also had the thought, but wouldn’t guarantee it, that if both batteries were good, both should charge and maintain pretty evenly. That was with the thought that the lower power battery would still limit the total charge, but if the lower power battery would charge to the mid 13s, you’d never see a problem. Again, that was speculation. He was very polite, and never said what idiot would parallel a marine battery with a car battery…

He further said that if both batteries are good, they will probably charge off the alternator, charge off the charger, and maintain off the battery maintainer without any issue. I’m going to try that.

And we ended with, if that doesn’t work right, the battery isolator is probably the best bet when I’m driving and charging off the alternator, and having them maintain off separate pigtails in the driveway. I think that’s what I’m heading for.

The next question would be does that isolator still function if I’m charging the battery under the hood from a battery charger? Will it still charge the group 65 first, and then flipped to the marine battery even if the truck is not running…

If my head hurts, I’m going to try to make everybody’s head hurt…
 


Rick W

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More info. A battery isolator “opens“ (enables circuit) to the second battery when the first battery is charged enough, typically 13.3. When the voltage drops to 12.8, the battery isolator “closes” (disables electrical circuit), cutting off charging to the second battery. This is independent of what is charging the battery.

Soooo, does that mean if I use a smart charger on the main battery, it will fully charge the main battery and then charge the secondary battery, just as if I was driving?

From the reading I’ve done, one issue may be that a “battery maintainer” may not have the amperage to charge the batteries and energize the isolator, so you just have to use a smart charger/maintainer instead of a simple maintainer

Anybody know? Does that make sense?
 

2011Supercab

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Soooo, does that mean if I use a smart charger on the main battery, it will fully charge the main battery and then charge the secondary battery, just as if I was driving?
NO,

The isolator has diodes in it to prevent voltage from going back through it to the other battery.
 

ben_2_go

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@Rick W Isolators have diodes and power isn't supposed to back feed. Combiners can allow the flow of power both ways.
 

1984RESTOMOD

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IMG_0323.jpeg

Set my bed. Using a 3” body lift to clear my trans resulting in fuel filler neck being short of the gas door by 2”. Any solutions for this? I can make a drop flange if need be
 
Last edited:

pjtoledo

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pulled the cap off my 2005 to enable a large purchase tomorrow.
running solo, I constructed a frame to hang from the engine hoist.
helpful hint: fiberglass slides real easy on smooth wood, put some friction stuff between the two.
 

Rick W

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View attachment 111181
Set my bed. Using a 3” body lift to clear my trans resulting in fuel filler neck being short of the gas door by 2”. Any solutions for this? I can make a drop flange if need be
I didn’t make mine longer, but I have a little info that may help.

When I built the Road Ranger, I took my bed off and put a weatherguard diamond plate toolbox across the frame right behind the cab. I cut out the gas door assembly from a junk bed I had, and I cut the side of the weatherguard box and installed it there. I didn’t move it up or down, rather, I actually relocated it (the door) about 8 or 9 inches horizontally closer to the center line of the truck. It was a colossal pain in the butt.

So what, huh? The fill neck is actually a hard plastic tube inside the bigger, rubber hose that you see. If you take the big hose off, you might be able to lengthen the plastic tube. I’m not sure what it’s made of to be gasoline resistant, but you could experiment and maybe plastic weld it or such. I would suggest getting a scrap fill neck out of the scrap yard. I would not trust any glue or adhesive without putting some kind of mechanical retainer on it in case the gasoline eats the glue (regardless of whether it says gas resistant or not). That could be as simple as a couple of sheet metal screws or such. You don’t have to worry about a perfect seal, because this is a drop tube, it doesn’t have to be air tight. You would want to do this about 5 or 6 inches below the door assembly, in a relatively straight vertical section.

The big rubber tube is as simple as cutting it and splicing in a larger diameter tube, of aluminum, or even steel, anything that will hold shape when you tighten the clamps on it. This will have to be airtight for you to pass emissions, and have the gas cap/missions system work right. But this outer hose/tube is not in direct contact with liquid gasoline, you simply need something stiff enough that you can tighten the hose clamps.

Do you have another case of beer? Unfortunately, your problem is that you have to do this with the bed off. Inserting the fill neck assembly into the tank is a real pain in the butt. If you just jack up the front, you may be able to do it.

Keep in mind, if you take the bed back off, that would be an excellent opportunity to absolutely bathe the bottom side with Rustoleum. Remember to mix Rustoleum 50-50 with mineral spirits for the first coat, so it runs in to all the nooks and crannies, and then use the full strength thick stuff a few hours later.

Hope it helps…

Edit: if you lengthen the drop tube, be positive you use something that will not decay in the gasoline. The pick up screens in my 96 F250 diesel, from the factory, were made out of something that the diesel ate up after a few years. I’d use an aluminum tube before I experimented with just PVC or something.

All my two cents…
 
Last edited:

bobbywalter

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View attachment 111181
Set my bed. Using a 3” body lift to clear my trans resulting in fuel filler neck being short of the gas door by 2”. Any solutions for this? I can make a drop flange if need be


get some hose or cut and extend with exhaust pipe in the middle..
 

Rick W

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4.0 & 2.9
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2WD / 4WD
4WD
Total Lift
97 stock, 3” on 87
Total Drop
N/A
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235/75-15
My credo
Never put off ‘til tomorrow what you can put off indefinitely
pulled the cap off my 2005 to enable a large purchase tomorrow.
running solo, I constructed a frame to hang from the engine hoist.
helpful hint: fiberglass slides real easy on smooth wood, put some friction stuff between the two.
??????
 

pjtoledo

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the 1x6s under the cap slid around some.
not having the straps secured at the hook didn't help the situation either.

I'll do some fine tuning before reassembly.


behold: the "tent for the malcontents"

2024-05-20 20.11.04.jpg
 

Rick W

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4.0 & 2.9
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4WD
Total Lift
97 stock, 3” on 87
Total Drop
N/A
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235/75-15
My credo
Never put off ‘til tomorrow what you can put off indefinitely
View attachment 111181
Set my bed. Using a 3” body lift to clear my trans resulting in fuel filler neck being short of the gas door by 2”. Any solutions for this? I can make a drop flange if need be
A little more info.

IMG_1930.jpeg


This is the outer tube that was on my 97 when I got it. The black tube next to it IS NOT the drop tube that was in it, but it looks the same except it’s shorter. This one is a very hard fuel duty rubber. The center tube in the real fill tube is a harder plastic, runs long, and is cut at an angle at the end. The purpose of the longer drop tube, the angle cut, etc. is to have the gas flow all the way into the gas in the tank without allowing droplets to freefall in the vapor space of the tank. Droplets like that could be ignited by static electricity. You want your drop tube to go almost down to the bottom of the tank. If not, clamp a couple pieces of stranded, copper wire without insulation on opposite sides of the drop tube at the bottom that will let the liquid gasoline run over them to the bottom of the tank. We actually did that stuff in the chemical plant years ago.

Hope it helps
 

sgtsandman

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THANK YOU!!!

I will read up on this, but a quick question. Will this replace my disconnect switch or be in addition to the disconnect switch? I need to be able to disconnect the second battery manually.
I am far from an expert on this subject. So, I've just followed along to this point.

From what I understand from overlanders who do the start battery and house battery setups for their rigs, they have some isolator to prevent the alternator from being overworked and to prevent the house system from draining the start battery but will allow the house battery to charge after the start battery has gotten fully charged.

For more information from people who have experience, I would check out the following youtube channels who have put out a lot of info on the subject.

Explorist Life
4XOverland
Ready to Drive Anywhere

I'm sure there are plenty of others but these are the one's I know that provide detailed and good information.

From there you can can decide what setup is right for you and what is in your budget. These guys setup some pretty elaborate systems for full blown overlanders. So, I don't expect you will want to go to the levels they do. But information is power and will help you get where you want to go.
 

Rick W

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4.0 & 2.9
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Manual
2WD / 4WD
4WD
Total Lift
97 stock, 3” on 87
Total Drop
N/A
Tire Size
235/75-15
My credo
Never put off ‘til tomorrow what you can put off indefinitely
I am far from an expert on this subject. So, I've just followed along to this point.

From what I understand from overlanders who do the start battery and house battery setups for their rigs, they have some isolator to prevent the alternator from being overworked and to prevent the house system from draining the start battery but will allow the house battery to charge after the start battery has gotten fully charged.

For more information from people who have experience, I would check out the following youtube channels who have put out a lot of info on the subject.

Explorist Life
4XOverland
Ready to Drive Anywhere

I'm sure there are plenty of others but these are the one's I know that provide detailed and good information.

From there you can can decide what setup is right for you and what is in your budget. These guys setup some pretty elaborate systems for full blown overlanders. So, I don't expect you will want to go to the levels they do. But information is power and will help you get where you want to go.
Thank you and @ben_2_go and all the others who have chimed in.

I ordered this jewel yesterday. It’s a 12v 140amp isolator.

IMG_1938.jpeg


It’s been a real education in just a few days.

The one outstanding difference between what I’m doing and perhaps what an Overlander does: The Overlander use is kind of an either/or use. You’re driving a while and charging, then you’re parked overnight working off the second battery, then you’re driving for a while again. You don’t have to worry about the charge in the second battery while you’re driving around for a while the next day.

I might drive a little bit, and then switch to the second battery if I have to stop for something. That stuff might take a while. Then I might drive a short distance, back home or to the office. It’s not a 50-50 split. Point is I may not drive far enough to charge the second battery if it’s had a good drain.

I actually called a friend of mine who works on ambulances and other emergency vehicles. The answer for them is simply that they don’t turn the vehicle off.

My thinking is, I’m going to add the isolator after the main battery, before my manual cut off, and add a charging pigtail to the second battery. On longer trips, the isolator should work fine. On shorter trips, when I get home, I could simply disconnect the second battery manually and put a charger on the second battery.

To me, that seems to be the simplest compromise. But I’m still researching.
 

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