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OEM Plus Interior Ideas

97Sandbox

Elite Explorer
Joined
February 7, 2019
Messages
1,191
Reaction score
1,111
City, State
Seward, NE
Year, Model & Trim Level
2000 Explorer Sport
As I've gotten older, I find myself moving away from newer, aftermarket interior upgrades and I really like "OEM Plus" modifications. Basically, using different OEM parts from other trim levels and sometimes other models -- occasionally with light modification -- to create an interior setup that never existed, but looks stock.

I'm planning to modify my Mountaineer interior along these lines, but haven't completely decided yet what I'll do. I've seen a lot of great ideas from folks on here, so I thought I'd start a thread to compile them. So let's see your favorite interior upgrades! Bonus points for cool shifter boot/console setups and 4406 swaps.

For starters, here's my '00 Sport which started life with non-bolstered cloth bucket seats and a half console with vinyl armrest. Now I have leather, bolstered front seats from my '97 XLT, and a leather armrest and color matched cupholders with faux suede sides from a '94 Limited. I also swapped the single cupholder shifter bezel with the simpler pre-'98 bezel.
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I have a set of factory all season mats in the front too.
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I'm still looking for leather back seats, I seem to only find them in titanium or charcoal. In the way back, I got rid of the side pocket because IMO it's too small to be useful and stuff just rattles around in there. I'm not running a factory sub box behind the grille though, I have a box I built with a single 15" that's covered in the same color of carpet taken from two Explorer cargo carpets.
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Nice!

My center consul box will go away with a 4406 swapped-in. The seats are high back bucket/bench seats out of a 2005 Ranger, with a store bought consul mounted/sitting on the middle seat. I'm 6'2" and the seats fit me well. I bought seat covers to get the fronts and rears to match.

I did not like how upright the rear seats are. I used 3 thicker washers as spacers under the front seat mounts to place the front of the seat higher. Then I placed metal axle wedges under the center seat belt/seat mount and used two 3/8" thick nuts nuts as spacers on the side mounting bolts to space and lean the side seat mounts back.
drivers-3.jpg

center-consul-n-dash.jpg

rear2.jpg

The back of these are always covered in road grime, dust dirt. That screws-up tailgating and what tailgate? I made a slide-out table/seat/bed. It pulls out to cover the dirty bumper. I am adding to it soon. I am going to make or get a cargo box to fit behind the seats and a shelf behind it. Both will span the width of the slide-out. That way I can place heavy stuff on top and still pull the slide-out. I want storage for a heater, some water, recovery stuff, some parts/tools, and no longer need the bed.
bed.jpg

The slide-out is under the carpet.
cargo.jpg
 






Nicely done. Factory upgrades or additions are always nice.

Junkyards can be your inspiration as well for upgrades. Overhead consoles are nice. Higher models can have information centers that are nice. Don't forget to look at full-size trucks and SUVs as well.
 






I forgot to mention I added the overhead console too!
 






ill post some up.
gauge overlays from a place called speedhut. since the last pic (these are old btw) the backlights were changed from 194's to white 194 LED

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went wild with LED stuff. changed the arm rest buttons to blue LED as well as the fog, 4x4, rear defrost, and rear wiper buttons. pulled the heater controls apart and change that to blue. later on i put a message center (that did function except for the low oil) and added blue LED's to it.
other things that were added that the truck didnt have from factory was cruise, overhead console, auto dimming mirror and full length certer console. the interior lights are also LED's but white.
since all these were taken however, the message center has been taken out. it no longer functioned with the terminator X. the rear wiper, and 4x4 switches have also been removed, and my holley screen has been added, and the bezel has been hydro dipped with a carbon fiber print

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Good thread for new and old ideas. I don't have much planned beyond restoration, but adding the six speed will require a little plastic work to the console trim piece(where the cup holders are). I'll cut that apart to make it the outer part for a shifter trim piece from a 2017 F150. I also have my trim hydro graphic dipped with CF, we did that in a group buy in about 2004. So I'll need to find a match to that for this custom trim part.

Here's the F150 shifter though, I bought it new with the Raptor handle, and a shift cable. I've mocked it up with my console out, it will mount fairly easily to the floor. The air ducts will need some altering, if to remain functional or just delete the air.

This below is just a picture of an F150 shifter that has the red thread trim, some King Ranch option I think. The trim piece is what I still lack, it's a $275 new part, I'll pass on that price. The new shifter is complete and came with the boot.
2016 F150 shifter trim frame.jpg


F150 shifter Carbon Fiber option 2015-2020.jpg
 






went wild with LED stuff. changed the arm rest buttons to blue LED as well as the fog, 4x4, rear defrost, and rear wiper buttons. pulled the heater controls apart and change that to blue. later on i put a message center (that did function except for the low oil) and added blue LED's to it.
other things that were added that the truck didnt have from factory was cruise, overhead console, auto dimming mirror and full length certer console. the interior lights are also LED's but white.
since all these were taken however, the message center has been taken out. it no longer functioned with the terminator X. the rear wiper, and 4x4 switches have also been removed, and my holley screen has been added, and the bezel has been hydro dipped with a carbon fiber print

View attachment 448571



View attachment 448573
What LEDs did you use for the door and center console? Are they the same ones you can use in the instrument panel? Also how did you manage to source/fit this display (the full length center console)? I didn't know that was even possible on 2nd gens and now I want to throw one in mine, the MPG thing is pretty sweet.

Also can confirm that LEDs are sweet. Threw some in because the bulbs in my instrument panel went out and it's probably my favorite thing
 






What LEDs did you use for the door and center console? Are they the same ones you can use in the instrument panel? Also how did you manage to source/fit this display (the full length center console)? I didn't know that was even possible on 2nd gens and now I want to throw one in mine, the MPG thing is pretty sweet.

Also can confirm that LEDs are sweet. Threw some in because the bulbs in my instrument panel went out and it's probably my favorite thing

The full length console will bolt into any 2nd gen with that dash, it bolts to the dash where the ashtray is, and the floor like the shorter consoles do. The wiring to add the message center is a little involved, but it has been done many times before. Others have adapted the EATC, the steering wheel controls, memory seat, auto down windows etc.
 






Nicely done. Factory upgrades or additions are always nice.

Junkyards can be your inspiration as well for upgrades. Overhead consoles are nice. Higher models can have information centers that are nice. Don't forget to look at full-size trucks and SUVs as well.

Oh BTW, keep an eye out for the super rare early 2nd gen rear seats. Some very few had a slightly reclining feature, but it was so slightly that they stopped making them.
 






Oh BTW, keep an eye out for the super rare early 2nd gen rear seats. Some very few had a slightly reclining feature, but it was so slightly that they stopped making them.
BIIs had them too

.
b2_recline_1.jpg
 






I would bet that is where the idea came from. But as they turned out in the 2nd gen Explorer, the couple of inches they moved was not appreciated. I wish the rear seats were a lot more comfortable, having them reworked by an upholstery shop would be cool. I wonder what could be done to remake them as two half seats instead of 1/3 to 2/3 widths. Make them recline enough to be likeable, and add some contour to them, maybe a small console in the middle(Jim has that plan already).
 






I wonder what could be done to remake them as two half seats instead of 1/3 to 2/3 widths. Make them recline enough to be likeable, and add some contour to them, maybe a small console in the middle(Jim has that plan already).
Could you just use the 50/50 seats from a two door? They'd sit further back (fit between the wheel wells), but that wouldn't be a bad thing to have more leg room IMO.
 






I would bet that is where the idea came from. But as they turned out in the 2nd gen Explorer, the couple of inches they moved was not appreciated. I wish the rear seats were a lot more comfortable, having them reworked by an upholstery shop would be cool. I wonder what could be done to remake them as two half seats instead of 1/3 to 2/3 widths. Make them recline enough to be likeable, and add some contour to them, maybe a small console in the middle(Jim has that plan already).

I know my wife's 02 Explorer has 40/20/40 seats for the second row.

2002 Ford Explorer XLT | Zoom Auto Group - Used Cars New Jersey


I'm sure they made recliners for the outside pair.

Center Console post #8

IMAG0107.jpg
 






Those are great, and good ideas to mess with to make something with nicer features, and then recover it.
 






What LEDs did you use for the door and center console? Are they the same ones you can use in the instrument panel? Also how did you manage to source/fit this display (the full length center console)? I didn't know that was even possible on 2nd gens and now I want to throw one in mine, the MPG thing is pretty sweet.

Also can confirm that LEDs are sweet. Threw some in because the bulbs in my instrument panel went out and it's probably my favorite thing
the door switches, and center console i used individual LED's with a single resister for them like this

MFG_QBL8IW15C-CW110.jpg

you can buy single LED's now ready to go, i did those probably 14 or more years ago lol

Amazon product ASIN B08NJBV6ZM
i am pretty sure i did a thread on how i did my switches, you will have to do a search on it however.

the message center fits into a full length console, you just take the plastic cubby holes out. as for making it work, its involved (which is why i wished i worked with my terminator).
here are the links i used to wire everything in.
cant remember how many hours of wiring it took but i know it was more then 8 for me.
as for the message center, its sitting on the shelf if you are interested in it, i would have to see if i have pigtails for it however. those came in limited or eddy bauer explorers.
 






My 03 trac is using late model ranger 5 speed shifter floor console with two cupholders
I had to trim the drivers cup holder to clear the 4406 shifter and ranger manual t case shift boot
006A0234-FC96-46BF-A451-A703FED4F86A.jpeg

068B595B-DA5D-4831-B1D0-767013FEC7F3.jpeg

Also some years of the center console arm have retractable rear cupholders as well
And console can be had with a rear cupholder

I like to add the vanity dual sun visors to any older Gen. I truck and you can get them with the “homelink” garage door opener built in

Of course you guys know I put 2014 mkz seats into a ranger it was not easy neither was the excape/tribute center console w console shifter

Heated mirror switch in the drivers door panel

I also put heated and cooled seats from a Lincoln into my97 f350 and the heat and cool functions work

Using 04-06 ranger steering wheel in gen ii is a nice upgrade for sure

I always remove the cig lighter socket and put in dual quick charge usb ports instead

These are some of my favorite interior mods
 






My 03 trac is using late model ranger 5 speed shifter floor console with two cupholders
I had to trim the drivers cup holder to clear the 4406 shifter and ranger manual t case shift boot
Nice! For some reason, I thought you were running the full explorer console with the F150 shifter and boot. Must be thinking of what was in the black trac you parted out. How'd you modify the Ranger shift lever for the M5R2, I thought the shifter stubs are clocked differently?

I ran the dual cupholder Ranger console before I swapped to the older style for a cleaner look. I don't understand why the Explorer console only has one cupholder. And what's the slot on the other side for, a pen?

I can't wait to get trac flooring in my Mounty, perfect for a farm beater! I'm still torn between finding a half console vs. running a bench seat though.
 






The shifter arm has been chop cut welded
M5r2 shifter hole lands same place or very close to 5 speed ranger
Sport tracs have the body restraints control module mounted on the center hump same as ranger, so it was nice to have this correct late model piece that also covers the module

I believe this is a ranger manual t case shift boot but I could be wrong it could be f150
I pulled parts from storage for this
Build
 






I have always liked the idea putting a couple bucket seats with recliners in the back. I haven't done so for I haul stuff in the back and the fold down seats work. I did have a set of low back Beards in my old bronco which I mounted to the old seat frame. I could pull two large pins and release the seat latch to take both out as a unit and haul stuff. Perhaps one could install seats mounted to a easily removed frame.

I have not looked one over, but am curious if there is something cool in a Mounty to swap???
 



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I have always liked the idea putting a couple bucket seats with recliners in the back. I haven't done so for I haul stuff in the back and the fold down seats work. I did have a set of low back Beards in my old bronco which I mounted to the old seat frame. I could pull two large pins and release the seat latch to take both out as a unit and haul stuff. Perhaps one could install seats mounted to a easily removed frame.

I have not looked one over, but am curious if there is something cool in a Mounty to swap???
Granted it's not the highest trim Mounty, but the only interior differences mine has compared to my old XLT are the Mercury logo on the steering wheel and "MOUNTAINEER" embroidered on the front seats. It does have puddle lights in the side mirrors and an auto-dimming rearview, but I think EBs and Limiteds had those too.
 






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