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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Well I was convinced that I'd be welcome to start a new build thread on here even though it's not a Patrol.
What happened to Tesy? She was unfortunately written off after a triton smashed into her at 90km/h. She was parked and asleep at the time so at least there wasn't any battle with insurance

Now truth be told, she was up for sale at the time anyway. It was a hard choice to make, but ultimately I decided I needed a dual cab ute as my "everything" vehicle. I bought my first house and am doing all the renovations myself, and it just made sense.
I did contemplate chopping the Patrol but there were various other reasons to sell, and the Triton ultimately decided for me :(

I decided I'd get something brand new that required as minimal mods as possible to do 4x4/touring and still be a comfy daily driver.

Okay so all the new dual cabs are fairly similar. With that in mind, my three biggest factors were the following
  1. Payload
    I wanted as high as possible without exceeding 1000kg (novated lease rule). It was far too easy to go over GVM on the patrol with it's payload of only 550kg

  2. Fit 33" tyres (legally) on stock suspension
    The reality is, I can do 90% of the trails I want to with stock suspension, provided I have a good set of tyres

  3. Cheap
    nuff said

So with that criteria, there was basically only one vehicle that fit
Automotive parking light Wheel Tire Vehicle Automotive side marker light



Yep. Ford Ranger with the 5 cylinder 3.2.
I got the XLS as it's the cheapest trim in the 4x4, with a payload of 991kg
I got the 3.2 as it's a well tested and strong engine.
The supposed transmission issues only appear to affect those who tow heavy loads, and is easily remedied by an aftermarket trans cooler. I don't tow and didn't even have a tow bar fitted. Will monitor temps with the scangauge in any case.
There are no other significant engine issues to worry about.

Why not the XLT/Wildtrak etc?
Because they just bolt stuff on which comes out of the payload, then charge an extra $10-30k for it.
The XLS still has all the modcons that I care about of the higher trims like Apple CarPlay.
Misses out on things that don't matter like side-steps (sliders coming soon), 17" alloys (new wheels already on), sports bar (stupid crap), chrome bits (I hate chrome), orange stitching on the seats (covers already on), rain-sensing wipers (annoying).... The list goes on!

Why not the dmax?
Only other model I really considered. I like the idea of the 4J engine platform, but their only model that comes in under 1t payload is their top spec trim at something stupid like $75k. I also test drove a 2019 dmax and it felt like driving a biscuit tin. The ranger interior feels very fancy to me

Why not the triton/hilux/navara?
They all just kinda rub me up the wrong way. Navara has a low payload. Triton has a small engine. Hilux has DPF issues and no CarPlay


So there we go. I'm now driving a Ford Ranger which has been abbreviated to "Franga"
 

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I Have Imaginary Friends
Patrol Hybrid.
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Looking forward to this build.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Must say, I bloody love having a ute!

Food Hood Motor vehicle Vehicle Car



Pictured here is 13 x 42l flexible tubs from bunnings. The square kind. They perfectly fit the tub, which I can then have half a cubic meter of soil dumped into at the landscaping shop. Saves a lot of effort with the wheelbarrow!!

Tire Vehicle Hood Wheel Motor vehicle
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
$100 off Marketplace for this EGR soft tonneau. It's very well designed and keeps everything very dry. It was just gonna be temporary until I decided on a canopy of some kind but I think I'll just make it work with this!

Tire Wheel Plant Car Vehicle


One of the other things I love about getting the pov-pack XLS is the "load-rest" or "cabin-guard" or whatever you call it instead of a sports bar. It actually holds stuff really well because of the fold up brackets, and sports bars are bloody annoying to reach around from the side

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
As i mentioned, I wanted to fit big fat ATs on stock suspension. The plan is to run this suspension for a few trips before deciding if I "need" a lift. I'm not going to carry much weight in the back, although it's sprung from factory to ride really nicely with a few hundred kg in the tub anyway!

We all know that the rules are an increase in tyre diameter of no more than 7%. Well guess what? Not only does that mean (some) 33"s are LEGAL on the ranger, they actually fit with NO modifications. The Hilux SR for example runs the same factory tire size as the Ranger, but needs the body mounts chopped to fit the 33"s, which requires a mod plate from an engineer. No thanks!!

Here's the comparison of XLT spec tyres to a common 33" tyre.
That's right. 6.9% Can you believe it?!
Font Rectangle Parallel Screenshot Number



Ok so there's one fly in the ointment here...
When Tesy got smashed, I frantically removed a few things from her including the almost brand new tyres. Saved myself a nice chunk of change, but the size is actually 285/75/16, which is 7.2%... Just gonna roll the dice on this size for now...


Does look good though doesnt it!

Wheel Tire Plant Vehicle Car


The wheels are CSA round hole steelies. 16x8 with a +25 offset. This actually puts me at a track width increase of 60mm over stock, which is 10mm wider than max legal.
Again rolling the dice I suppose, but not by much! In for a penny, in for a pound

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Must say, I bloody love having a ute!

View attachment 537805


Pictured here is 13 x 42l flexible tubs from bunnings. The square kind. They perfectly fit the tub, which I can then have half a cubic meter of soil dumped into at the landscaping shop. Saves a lot of effort with the wheelbarrow!!

View attachment 537806
Looks like you need some sort of tub liner protection in there asap....
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Looks like you need some sort of tub liner protection in there asap....
You're not wrong! Sitting in the shed is a spray on Raptor liner kit. Just been so flat out that I haven't done anything about it yet
 

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Y2KGUII ZD Wgn
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As i mentioned, I wanted to fit big fat ATs on stock suspension. The plan is to run this suspension for a few trips before deciding if I "need" a lift. I'm not going to carry much weight in the back, although it's sprung from factory to ride really nicely with a few hundred kg in the tub anyway!

We all know that the rules are an increase in tyre diameter of no more than 7%. Well guess what? Not only does that mean (some) 33"s are LEGAL on the ranger, they actually fit with NO modifications. The Hilux SR for example runs the same factory tire size as the Ranger, but needs the body mounts chopped to fit the 33"s, which requires a mod plate from an engineer. No thanks!!

Here's the comparison of XLT spec tyres to a common 33" tyre.
That's right. 6.9% Can you believe it?!
View attachment 537811


Ok so there's one fly in the ointment here...
When Tesy got smashed, I frantically removed a few things from her including the almost brand new tyres. Saved myself a nice chunk of change, but the size is actually 285/75/16, which is 7.2%... Just gonna roll the dice on this size for now...


Does look good though doesnt it!

View attachment 537809

The wheels are CSA round hole steelies. 16x8 with a +25 offset. This actually puts me at a track width increase of 60mm over stock, which is 10mm wider than max legal.
Again rolling the dice I suppose, but not by much! In for a penny, in for a pound

View attachment 537810
I think you will be fine.
 

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'14 Y61 ZD30 CRD M/T ST
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As i mentioned, I wanted to fit big fat ATs on stock suspension. The plan is to run this suspension for a few trips before deciding if I "need" a lift. I'm not going to carry much weight in the back, although it's sprung from factory to ride really nicely with a few hundred kg in the tub anyway!

We all know that the rules are an increase in tyre diameter of no more than 7%. Well guess what? Not only does that mean (some) 33"s are LEGAL on the ranger, they actually fit with NO modifications. The Hilux SR for example runs the same factory tire size as the Ranger, but needs the body mounts chopped to fit the 33"s, which requires a mod plate from an engineer. No thanks!!

Here's the comparison of XLT spec tyres to a common 33" tyre.
That's right. 6.9% Can you believe it?!
View attachment 537811


Ok so there's one fly in the ointment here...
When Tesy got smashed, I frantically removed a few things from her including the almost brand new tyres. Saved myself a nice chunk of change, but the size is actually 285/75/16, which is 7.2%... Just gonna roll the dice on this size for now...


Does look good though doesnt it!

View attachment 537809

The wheels are CSA round hole steelies. 16x8 with a +25 offset. This actually puts me at a track width increase of 60mm over stock, which is 10mm wider than max legal.
Again rolling the dice I suppose, but not by much! In for a penny, in for a pound

View attachment 537810
I fitted 33's to my Patrol and still haven't done anything else with the suspension. I know comparing the Patrol with the Ranger isn't apples with apples, but the tyres made enough of a difference in off-road performance that I don't think a suspension mod is needed at all. Maybe for a GVM increase, but not for my off-road needs.

Also, the only time the authorities will check your wheel offset, is if they think your tyres stick out the guards. Keep the tyres tucked in and drive like a model citizen and you'll be fine.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Cheers guys. Yeah I’m sure mr plod won’t notice my ranger all that much compared to some of the others out there!

the tyre shop wasn’t keen to squeeze the 33” spare under the tub as it would sit close to the diff and brake wiring.
Vehicle Hood Tire Automotive lighting Automotive tire



So I unclipped the wiring, wrapped some split conduit around it and cable tied it up a bit higher and out of the way

Tire Wheel Land vehicle Fuel tank Vehicle


with that done, I hoisted the 33” spare into the stock spot.
wow only 10mm clearance between the tyre and the diff! Not happy with that considering the diff probably has a little backwards play when Offroad…
Tire Wheel Photograph Motor vehicle Automotive tire


after scratching my head for a while, I started making plans to install an onboard air compressor so I could keep the tyre deflated under there. That would work right?
Then I thought maybe I should just bite the bullet and buy a rear bar with a swing away? Wow that would be cool but $$…
Then I thought maybe I could grind that little bracket off the diff… but that seemed excessive.

THEN I thought… hmm the car is on the driveway pointed downhill. Why don’t I turn it around, point uphill, loosen off the chain, let the tyre swing backward a bit and then tighten it up!??

well would you look at that! Go easy guys. Anything other than a barn door mounted spare is new technology to me.

Tire Automotive tire Vehicle Motor vehicle Wheel
 

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My son runs 315s on his Patrol. He has been defected a couple of times. The price you pay for owning a patrol on your p plates. No issues since getting his full license and is going back to thirty threes for daily use.

Never been done for tire size always for poke.

I run the same on my patrol with smaller offset and no issues.

Good to see a new build thread. I have a tray and canopy coming for our Dmax so will do the same. My Patrol is getting a bit long in the tooth as a work vehicle, so will be retired graciously and the Dmax will take its place.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Motor vehicle Automotive tire Wood Yellow Tire

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18mm poke I’ve got with this tyre and wheel setup

while it sounds like basically nothing, visually the poke is still obvious to the naked eye, so I’ll be getting flares.
thankfully utemart does ultra slim 28mm flares that apparently a great match for factory paint. Once they’re in stock I’ll grab a set.


Also for anyone interested in the laws surrounding tyre size, I actually dug up the document for NSW that has an interesting line about the 7% rule from here.

Rectangle Font Slope Parallel Screenshot


so that makes it very clear that it’s 7% larger than the LARGEST tyre size offered as an option by the dealer.

so for the current crop of rangers:
the XLS like mine comes with 255/70r16, which obviously doesn’t get me within 7% of any 33” tyre.

The wildtrak comes with 265/60r18, which is 6.9% smaller than just one 33”, which is the 285/65r18. other common 33” options are >7%. (Personally I wasn’t interested in any 18” rim setup at all.)

But the goldilocks here is the XLT with its standard 265/65r17 which is 6.9% from the 285/70r17. This is an option for the XLS on the Ford website. Unfortunately my current tyres are 7.2% larger

here’s where it gets interesting… the FX4Max and the raptor come standard with the same 33” - 285/70r17… the Raptor obviously has a totally different suspension setup with rear coils, but the FX4 MAX just has a 20mm lift over the previously mentioned models like my XLS… as we know, that size will fit with no scrub to any current ranger.

I’ve emailed Ford asking if the fx4max tyre could be fitted as an option to an XLS. If they say yes… then not only would my current 285/75r16 be legal, but that may even open up options in the realm of 35” tyres as a factory legal option to any old ranger like mine.

personally I’m not all that interested in 35”s but it is fascinating (to me). I suspect Ford will say no however.
 

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OK, so a couple of things you need to keep into consideration:

1. The important part of the state regulation, which you already eluded to, is the "as shown on the vehicle's tyre placard" bit. If the tyre you are using as your 7% benchmark is not listed, you cannot use it in your calculation, no matter if another Ranger has a different placard with that reference tyre listed. Mr. Plod will go straight to your installed tyre placard as the first check.

2. You most certainly can buy a tyre placard from a dealer, but some OEM's might require you to supply them with a VIN to ensure they provide you with the correct placard. If you have a "sample VIN" of the one you want, they'll happily sell you a placard for that vehicle. However, the original tyre size is specified on the vehicle's certification documentation (in the RVCS database or, from 1 July 2021 onwards, the new RAV) and it is very easy for the authorities to verify what tyre size was homologated against the specific VIN.

So if you are going to fit a different tyre placard, you need to find one that has both your original size AND the larger size you want to use for your 7% reference, else they'll pull you up for an invalid tyre placard and you'd still get wrapped over the knuckles for too large a tyre.

I'd be interested to hear what Ford has to say about fitting the FX4Max tyre on the XLS. My gut feel is that they would say no, as it potentially opens a liability can of worms for them. But saying that, at the moment Ford AUS don't seem to have the greatest grasp of the legal implications of the things they proclaim... :sneaky:



 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
It differs from OEM to OEM, model to model.

Here’s the label on my GLC300 daily. Not sure what Ford does.
View attachment 537965
Interesting. I asked on a ford group and lots of people say they just ordered a different placard. Don't really like running anything illegal myself. May just look into engineering as silly as that seems for just a set of 33s
 

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Interesting. I asked on a ford group and lots of people say they just ordered a different placard. Don't really like running anything illegal myself. May just look into engineering as silly as that seems for just a set of 33s
I think once you’re in a position where you need to start explaining to a Police officer that your tyres are within the 7% rule, you’re probably past the point where they’ve checked what was factory fitted on your VIN. So unless someone categorically states that they got away after being pulled over with a replacement tyre placard, I think you live in a fool’s paradise if you think that’s going to get you off the hook.

As with most mods that are borderline, it’s more about flying under the radar than whether you need engineering or not. The more obvious the change (e.g. having to resort to non-factory flares) the bigger the chance of you getting pulled over, the better your back story needs to be, preferably with some backup paperwork.

Nissan AUS actually did everyone a massive favour by developing accessory flares for D23 Navara. You can sneak some wheels and tyres in under the guards with a track that is waaaay wider than what’s allowed under state modification guidelines, without attracting any attention.
 
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