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l88m22vette

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Please sir may I have locking diffs?
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I've always been a car guy, and know which mods are useful and which are more bling that substance. The Badlands is my first truck, I'm thinking about fun 4x4 stuff for the first time, and I'm new to this whole aspect of the automotive hobby. I'm from IL, and the Great Lakes aren't know for rugged peaks and great changes in elevation, so any serious mods would see use in a 4x4 park or on a road trip.

I have had this thing for less than 3 weeks and my head is already spinning with all the parts that are available. I got the Badlands since I wanted something very capable from the factory, and am trying to take a less is more approach since I've dumped a lot of money on other cars in the past. I've been putting together a realistic list of things to do, but I've found myself going down the rabbit-hole of "Hmm, I bet that could be useful, eventually..."

Like, do I really need a winch? Do I waste my time chasing down the extended breather vents from the Everglades? A roof rack sounds like something I'd need, but if I bought a larger vehicle with a removable roof doesn't that defeat the purpose? Basically, I'm trying to fill in the gaps to cover what wasn't from the factory, and I don't want to just buy a bunch of crap I'm not sure I'd ever use. A month ago I'd never looked at a recovery board but spent 15 minutes on them last night, and didn't buy any because I realized they'd look great taking up cargo space.
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Tricky Dick

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My advice is use it like it is for at least a few months and note every time you say "I wish I".

I thought I had to have a tailgate table before I took the time to get to know the vehicle, turns out it was a complete waste of money for me and I never use it.
 

BlueBronco

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Start with basic recovery gear and then prioritize around your preferred outdoor activities (camping, hunting, overlanding, rock crawling, beach cruising, exploring, mall crawling, etc) and while out doing those things, make a list of gear that what would make it easier to accomplish those activities. And buy quality gear the first time around.
 

Bmadda

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I'm from SE WI, and I can tell you that a winch IS a worthwhile investment. That and a good solid towstrap/tree hugger and maybe some snatch blocks. Forget the recovery boards...the mud gets deep in this part of the country, and you will likely just bury both your truck and your recovery boards. I generally take some flack from folks in the "golden west" for this opinion, but every winch I have ever bought is the best 4x4 dollars I have ever spent...even if only used once! Saves one minor stuck from turning into a day ruining debacle!

EDIT: For the record the most stuck I ever was was in Marseilles IL!
 
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GF is loving her Badsquatch, and so far we're looking at some step bars. Other than that she's not one to modify her vehicles much.

I totally understand the "when is it enough" feeling though. My Chevy SS is heavily modified and I'm doingore upgrades over the winter. Bigger supercharger, upgraded cooling for it, bigger injectoes/pump, etc.

Many people go by the 'better to have and not need...' way of thinking. But then some do go off road trail riding too where it comes in handy. It's your Bronco so do what you want to it. Like my SS, do I really need 900sh hp to get groceries? No, but it sure is fun. 😁
 

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ohp138

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All good questions and I can respond as someone who has owned an OBX - Non-Sasquatch for 7 month, living in Colorado, and wheeling only moderate trails. Mods I found to be value-added and ones I plan for the future:

1. Tires - I updated the factory tires to 33" w/Falken Wildpeaks
2. Mabett Front Door Storage Pockets - this one is a no brainer
3. Recovery Gear - Shackles and a good kinetic recovery rope
4. Air Compressor - not installed, but mobile and I keep it in the Bronco.
5. Fog Lights - I also plan to add an amber bar for snow conditions in Colorado

Future additions:

1. 2" lift - as much as I love the Bronco, clearance is an issue - particularly for the trails here.
2. Skid plates - RCI is up the road from me in Loveland and again, not much protection underneath. This one is also a no-brainer, IMO.
3. Updated tie rods/steering upgrade. I'm waiting on Ford Performance to see what options are coming to the market. My concern is adding the lift and weakening the tie rods and steering housing.

I would like to add a winch to the heavy duty modular bumper, but Ford's price is ridiculous and I'm still looking at after-market options.

A nice-to-have would be a steel rear bumper, but it's not an urgent need.
 
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l88m22vette

l88m22vette

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Please sir may I have locking diffs?
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That's a nice setup and plan, aside from flaps I want to grab a few lights, I'd love some simple round fogs instead of the LED insect eye lights that are so common.

@Bmadda I do want a winch (eventually), I've absolutely been looking with the Black Friday deals, I can tell that having one really is one of the best serious truck mods. I really want something hidden like the Rough County setup, but then I'd have to hack my factory bashplate. I don't have a welder and that's a pretty big step, so it'll take some time for me to make any kind of decision. I like my Modular front and factory rear steel bumpers, so those are staying.

@FuzzyBobMichigan I've got a TT sitting in the garage waiting on parts, which is a 15 year ownership story of its own, and I just traded a 2005 Outback turbo, which was a moneypit and finally turned me off of Subarus. I want my TT running again, your SS sounds very motivational. I'm thinking about IAG steps for the front doors, I'd love a set of the RCI sliders since they work with the factory rails, but that's a cool grand I could put to better use, like a winch. See, I'm making better decisions because of past experiences! 🤦‍♂️

I thought I had to have a tailgate table before I took the time to get to know the vehicle, turns out it was a complete waste of money for me and I never use it.
That's so funny, that was going to be one of my first mods, I almost mentioned that in my original post lol

Start with basic recovery gear and then prioritize around your preferred outdoor activities (camping, hunting, overlanding, rock crawling, beach cruising, exploring, mall crawling, etc) and while out doing those things, make a list of gear that what would make it easier to accomplish those activities. And buy quality gear the first time around.
I have a mini-kit going, which is a blanket, shovel, tools/zipties, fuses, first aid kit, and some other small stuff. I've been looking at lists and recommendations online, I'll grab a starter kit sometime soon. I wish Ford had given us more storage space under the floor, and I keep forgetting to check on whether I have the longer factory jack extension.
 
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MayhemMike

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As a young man I routinely heaped on aftermarket gizmos on my vehicles. As I got older, less and less gizmos. Now at geezer status , a trailer hitch, rain proof cover for when the top is off, and T screw handles to replace the bolts that hold the top on. This is the extent of my “ required” gizmos.
 

Billnchristy

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I'm used to buying kinda obscure cars that don't have a lot of aftermarket support, so I can agree that it is staggering.

We're just doing forest service roads and the like right now but I really would like to get a compressor, winch, recovery gear etc. but it's not a huge priority when we aren't going apeshit yet.
 

rtazz17

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any vehicle is outfitted for how you will use it. What members do on here is likely way different then how you will use it. Drive it for a few months. You will figure out what you need vs what you want. Usually what we need is way different from what we want or will actually ever use. Imagine what a jeep owner goes through. Way way more aftermarket accessories available for a jeep.
 

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BlueBronco

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I have a mini-kit going, which is a blanket, shovel, tools/zipties, fuses, first aid kit, and some other small stuff. I've been looking at lists and recommendations online, I'll grab a starter kit sometime soon. I wish Ford had given us more storage space under the floor, and I keep forgetting to check on whether I have the longer factory jack extension.
I carry a small 4x4 block as well to place my jack on and make sure I have the needed height. Get a small storage trunk from Academy or the like to keep all your recovery gear in and toss it in the back as needed. Throw in at least a tow strap (or snatch rope if you have the budget) and a couple of shackles. Also, for $60 a spare tie-rod can turn an oh F! moment into a 10 minute field fix rather than a $500+ recovery, tow and repair. Sure, most people will never break a tie-rod but it is cheap insurance.
 

LQDCRJ

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Clubs
 
All good questions and I can respond as someone who has owned an OBX - Non-Sasquatch for 7 month, living in Colorado, and wheeling only moderate trails. Mods I found to be value-added and ones I plan for the future:

1. Tires - I updated the factory tires to 33" w/Falken Wildpeaks
2. Mabett Front Door Storage Pockets - this one is a no brainer
3. Recovery Gear - Shackles and a good kinetic recovery rope
4. Air Compressor - not installed, but mobile and I keep it in the Bronco.
5. Fog Lights - I also plan to add an amber bar for snow conditions in Colorado

Future additions:

1. 2" lift - as much as I love the Bronco, clearance is an issue - particularly for the trails here.
2. Skid plates - RCI is up the road from me in Loveland and again, not much protection underneath. This one is also a no-brainer, IMO.
3. Updated tie rods/steering upgrade. I'm waiting on Ford Performance to see what options are coming to the market. My concern is adding the lift and weakening the tie rods and steering housing.

I would like to add a winch to the heavy duty modular bumper, but Ford's price is ridiculous and I'm still looking at after-market options.

A nice-to-have would be a steel rear bumper, but it's not an urgent need.
check out the JCR Offroad winch plate for the mod bumper, I like it better than the Rough Country one.
 

AZMikeL

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You have to prioritize. My priorities for example:

  1. Vertically challenged wife = 1st mod of Zroadz step sliders and paracord grab handles. Now rattles are mostly the only annoying sound in the rig
  2. Trainwreck of a center console = Mabbet console organizer tray
  3. Very, very, very hairy yellow lab in the back = Mabbet seatback protectors to cover the carpet on the back seats. The back still looks like it has been freshly carpeted in yellow when she gets out.
  4. Mostly bald head and AZ sun = Gearshade mesh top to cut down on the sunburn
  5. WTH do I do with these soft top windows? = cheap window bag from Amazon
  6. Near disaster when we took a hot bag of taco fixins out to the desert to eat = Mabbet Tailgate table (on sale).
  7. Getting old and 1/2 blind at night = glare cover for touch screen, and soon to add decent ditch lights.

Eventually will add better bumpers (I like ADD and they are local) and a winch, but the house bled me dry this fall with some unexpected work.

Some things you can go cheap on (like the $45 window bags on Amazon), some you need to pony up and spend the money. My rule of thumb is if it breaks and I'm screwed, I'll spend for the quality. Zroadz sliders are not cheap, but they are beefy and probably some of the best bolt ons you can get.

Bottom line - enjoy your rig and prioritize your spend on stuff that makes a difference for you.
 

techdisaster

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The very best accessory is a friend who bought everything already. They bought all the tools and are just itching to use them anyway. Then, start adding to your kit what you actually used on the trails.
 

Sitruc_btb

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I know the feeling. The gobs of aftermarket stuff flowing in, looking at ditch lights, bumpers, etc, but, this is my daily driver. I need to keep it reasonable.

I started with essential recovery gear. kinetic rope, soft shackle, d rings for the mod bumper, and some convenience features: Bartact grab handles, and the IAG soft top assist struts.

Before long, I was reading all about gaining articulation, belly clearance, lifts, blah blah blah. My head, too, was spinning, but I need to keep this thing in daily driver territory, and since I just bought a new car, buying brand new coilover suspension is out of the question, and probably not needed for what I'm doing with it. That being said, I did add some Fabtech trailing arms, a winch, bigger tires, and now I have a small lift (budget boost, yet to be installed) for some extra clearance. And that's it. Done. finished. No more. I have my capable daily driver.
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