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  #1  
Old 03-20-2010
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Dashboard Guages...Help

I have a 1998 Ranger XLT. However It only has the speedometer in it plus the other 4 gauges. I want to get one that has the RPMs on it. I can get one from a junkyard but my question is if I put it in will it work? I took the dash out and looked behind if hoping to find maybe a wire that wasnt plugged in but no luck. So Im wondering if I get one from a Ranger from a junkyard that is the same year will it plug in and work and read the RPMs or does the truck have to have another part installed in it somewhere else?

Edit: By the way its a manual and also will it affect it I put in a dash that reads RPMS but came from an automatic?
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Old 03-20-2010
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as far as i know i dont think it would work... what you could do it wire one up to match the factory counsel (i dont know how) or i think they make small guages to go into the piller puds and i think there is a tach one out there.... but short answer idk haha good luck.. someone on here will help for sure.... WELCOME
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Old 03-20-2010
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yes, it's plug and play. and if you get one from an auto, you can remove the blank black insert and put it in the other cluster.

here is my explorer sport one in my 95 ranger. truck came without a tach. only mod i had to do was swap the temp gauge, but that shouldn't be needed with 98+. cluster is from an auto, i have a 5 speed as well.

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Old 03-20-2010
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lol see there it is told you someone would chime in and know
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Old 03-20-2010
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Ok that should work easy enough. One more quick question. How do i change the miles on the readout? If I bring it ford will they be able to do it? I doubt the read out on the truck Im getting it from will be anything close to mine?
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Old 03-20-2010
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Old 03-20-2010
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No hypelink

Edit: Thank you
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Old 03-22-2010
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Ok so I did it today. It wasnt as hard as I thought it would be. For anyone just chaning or upgrading I advise just take your speedometer needle + odometer (its all one piece) and swap it into the new one. It is alot easier then trying to roll back a odometer. As another FYI I have a 98 and I still had to swap the temp gauge out so be prepared to do that. Other then that its a piece of cake and now I have a lovely blue dash board at night too. Old one was green.
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Old 03-22-2010
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that's strange you had to swap your temp gauge. it's only been a handful of us that have had to. most of them have been 95 and 96's.
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Old 03-22-2010
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Hmm well the old dash did come out of a 96 I believe? That could have something to do with it possibly?
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Old 03-22-2010
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the difference is there is a resistor on some temp gauges, and none on others. it's only been seen on some 95-6's, but no real reason as been determined. as long as it works, that's all that matters.
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Old 03-22-2010
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yup. and i found it easier to grab a gps and put my speedometer needle on that way. I couldn't find 4 gator clips. even though I don't have cruise control. Speaking of which if you do it the gps way make sure you close your windows, those needles are really susceptible to the wind blowing them
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Old 03-22-2010
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that's how i did mine. but mine was off due to gear and tire size change
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Old 03-22-2010
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honestly thinking about it. mine was too. i got pulled over for going 5 over in a school zone when really i wasnt according to my speedometer so probably a good thing it got re calculated
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Old 04-02-2010
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This thread is pertenant to my interests. I have a 95 Ranger XLT 2.3 with 5speed. The speedometer and odometer are not working, plus the lights are somewhat burnout on it.

I've replaced the VSS sensor on the tranny, and the 2 related fuses with no change. Could y'all please help me along with this upgrade to a new dash? I'd love to have a bright nice dash like the ones you are showing in the pics, plus a tach would be great too. What are the steps to doing this and what model/years are acceptable for the swap?

Did you have any trouble getting the 98 speedo working since the 98s use a different method for determining speed? What about the odometer? And what issues are you having with the temp gauge to where it needs to be swapped out?
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Old 04-02-2010
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Actually I reread this and the linked thread and found that its pretty much a walkthrough, but I'm confused about one thing. Are y'all just swapping the back of the unit and keeping your gauges? Whats the point of getting another unit and swapping it with your old odometer and speedometer? Wont that look retarded with several white gauges and 2 black gauges?
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Old 04-02-2010
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The one I happened to get was the same black backface with white needles. The glow just changed from green to blue only because of what I took it out of. I'm not a hundred percent sure what your asking but no. You only have to swap your speedometer. and you can even keep the needle off the "new" one so they're all the same color. Other wise yes when you plug the new one in all the gauges work correctly. Except temperature dependent on your model. Obviously its just easier to take the whole odometer housing out and put it in the new one if you want your real mileage. And even if you roll the odometer back you have to take the speedometer needle off anyway because the housing on the backside wont come off with it on. Hope that helps.
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Old 04-02-2010
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RpurdyJ, thanks for some clarity. I apologize that I didn't think through my questions. Here is the situation:

As I stated above I have a 95 Ranger XLT 5spd, dash has no Tach, but the Speed/Trip/Odo aren't working. So I'm guessing that means that even if I wanted to upgrade to a bolt-on 02 Explorer Sport Trac dash all pretty and white, I would still need to get another replacement 95-97 Ranger panel with a working Speedo to swap INTO the newer 02 SportTrac dash correct?

With 3 items on my dash not working plus half of the lights burnt out on it, I might as well upgrade as best I can. Do you know what is it that (in the dash itself) runs the speedometer? Is it an electric motor that connects directly to the VSS/speedometer cable for the 95-97 generation?

I guess I need to understand that before I spend $80-100 on instrument panels.
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Old 04-02-2010
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you can replace the entire cluster, faces, gauges, and the housing. the one i posted above is a complete explorer sport cluster. the only "ranger" part on it is the temp gauge motor. the housing, needles, faces, and the rest of the gauges are from the explorer.
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Old 04-02-2010
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drppdyllwrngr, I guess I'm not seeing how the speedometer off of the newer cluster will work with the VSS from the 95-97 vehicles? Is it backwards compatible?

EDIT: one last thing, that "FORD" insert over the gear indicator at the bottom of the dash, where did you get that? its flippin sweet

Last edited by arownious; 04-02-2010 at 07:51 PM.
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Old 04-02-2010
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can't explain how it works, but it does. i've had clusters from 98 ranger, this explorer one, and a couple others in my 95. plug and play.


that overlay was custom made by a vinyl shop, and a couple hours of messing with the alignment, and plexiglass to finally get it right. my truck is a 5 speed, and the cluster was from an auto. and the stock black delete panel just wouldn't look right.
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Old 04-02-2010
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This is awesome. Okay, sorry to keep bothering you but last questions: what year is the explorer sport dash from? I've found two on ebay and need to make sure either/which would work.

2001 Ford Explorer Sport Trac Instrument Cluster Speedo : eBay Motors (item 250532427599 end time Apr-16-10 1351 PDT)

01 02 03 EXPLORER SPORT TRAC INSTRUMENT CLUSTER 60K : eBay Motors (item 370280011654 end time Apr-23-10 04:50:07 PDT)

Also, how did you know to change out the temp gauge and what did it actually take? Just removing the piece itself behind the gauge face and moving it to the next cluster?
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Old 04-02-2010
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neither of your link work. but up to 01 explorer and the sport trac should be 03ish. as long as the cluster still looks like the ranger one, it should work.

the temp gauge requires pulling the clear lense, pull that 1/3 off the circuit board (they come apart easy) remove the temp needle, and unbolt the motor from the back of the board. pretty simple. the last time i did it, it took me 20 minutes from pulling the first trim panel off the dash to buttoning it up.
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  #24  
Old 04-03-2010
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But yes its all really simple. All you do is pull the needle off take the plastic case off and the motor just pulls out. Oh I actually I lied. Youll need a tiny torx head. like Tiny tiny. I think its like a 5 or something. To unscrew them. Its best when you perform this to let your truck cool down for hours so the engine is cold then just set the needle at cold. Or drive it around and run it hot then set it where it belongs for fully heated.
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Old 04-03-2010
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think it's a t10. it's the smallest i have in my bit set. i like to do mine at hot, but either way will work.
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