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Thread: Ford PIU Install

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    Default Ford PIU Install

    I'll start this out by saying I'm nothing but an end user who has a smattering of knowledge about vehicle installs. I've spec'd and worked with about a half dozen upfitters over the past 15 years on the job.

    I'm looking for some insight into our current upfitters thought process. My questions include:

    - normal for these new PUI's to power radios via relay?

    - shouldn't the high power have a larger guage wire?

    - doesn't look too neat of an install

    - is it normal to have the traffic signal traffic preemption light facing directly forward punching through the windshield?

    Here is a high power VHF xtl2500

    IMAG0635.jpg

    It's power

    IMAG0636.jpg

    Mid power XTl2500 UHF

    IMAG0637.jpg

    Traffic preemption light

    IMAG0664.jpg

    Thoughts?


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    First, can you read the gauge markings on the wiring, its hard to tell what it is from the pics. I will say it is definitely not the neatest install I have seen. Something about it also looks super weird. I always installed my relays in the engine compartment. Just....a strange install.

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    Marked 10 gauge. And the relays are free spinning

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    I think thats thick enough for a high power radio. Always better to be thicker, but that's pretty good. I think what I find to be weird about the install is the lack of securing the wires every so often. I try every 10 to 12 inches, but sometimes less. Also, I try to secure it to avoid strain on connectors. And, it looks like the radios are mounted in the trunk, seems that the wiring is too loose back there, making it difficult to use the trunk. Definitely just not right

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    The bricks are mounted on the cage partition behind the back seats. Not in the storage area, but behind the rear seats. In the one unmarked PIU the bricks were just set inside the console- not even mounted.

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    Quote Originally Posted by alf2109 View Post
    The bricks are mounted on the cage partition behind the back seats. Not in the storage area, but behind the rear seats. In the one unmarked PIU the bricks were just set inside the console- not even mounted.
    That has to be one of the messiest installs in a PS vehicle that I've seen in years. If that were done where I work, the tech responsible wouldn't be employed there anymore. Everything should ALWAYS be mounted so that it doesn't slide around and wind up shorting something out and all wires and cables should be neatly routed and bundled (zip ties every foot or so - like wiredwrx said) Jeez...

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    People actually get paid to do that?

    Definitely not the messiest but sure is not good looking either.

    1. There should not be a relay there. Proper ignition control is via the yellow wire at the control head. Using the relay here could actually cause the control head to stay powered up. If you are on trunking using a relay here for ignition control would also prevent the radio from de-affiliating from the system. They should probably take a look through the installation manual.

    2. The wire appears to be 10 gauge, if so that is sufficient.

    3. Not neat at all, especially for an "upfitter". I wouldn't call them an upfitter if this is their quality of work consistently.

    4. If it is a marked unit it would look better outside. However, there is nothing wrong with the preemption light going through the windshield. How they went about installing that looks like absolute dogsh!t though, I guess they're persistent at least.



    You should fire this "upfitter".

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    All I can say is 'electrical tape'? Really?
    Apparently NOT a radio professional.

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    Quote Originally Posted by crazyboy View Post
    People actually get paid to do that?

    Definitely not the messiest but sure is not good looking either.

    1. There should not be a relay there. Proper ignition control is via the yellow wire at the control head. Using the relay here could actually cause the control head to stay powered up. If you are on trunking using a relay here for ignition control would also prevent the radio from de-affiliating from the system. They should probably take a look through the installation manual.

    2. The wire appears to be 10 gauge, if so that is sufficient.

    3. Not neat at all, especially for an "upfitter". I wouldn't call them an upfitter if this is their quality of work consistently.

    4. If it is a marked unit it would look better outside. However, there is nothing wrong with the preemption light going through the windshield. How they went about installing that looks like absolute dogsh!t though, I guess they're persistent at least.



    You should fire this "upfitter".
    They bragged to the boss that they "weren't a one trick pony, knew how to do things right."

    All the cars required antenna connection repair by our local radio shop.

    They installed rain guards on two pick-ups- the windows won't close. The window hits the guard and auto-returns to the down position.

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    Well at least they were honest, they arent a one trick pony, they mess everything up.

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    Lowest bid?

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    Quote Originally Posted by wiredwrx View Post
    Lowest bid?
    Boss' choice, they snowed him well.

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    Here's the guts

    IMAG0669.jpg

    IMAG0667.jpg

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    Certainly messy, but I've seen worse. "Upfitters" are always about low cost. My customers use them a few times, and then come back after they've had to fix and refix and refix their work. My stuff goes in once, and lasts the life of the vehicle.

    The wire gauge is good, and TSP's can shoot through glass. I'm not fond of the relays, but without knowing their reasoning, hard to judge. Ignition sense should have gone to the head. Maybe they were worried about parasitic battery drain, or reset / lockup issues during engine crank. But, as they've wired it, the radio will always start at the home channel. I'm not fond of barrier strips anymore either. I use WAGO blocks on DIN rails to land all the wiring. More compact, very dense, mechanically strong, easy to expand, and easy to document.

    A picture of my knitting in a bus showing the mdt, fare printer, and credit card reader. For some reason I don't have a picture of a completed equipment cabinet where all the work gets done.

    20190313_Gillig.jpg
    Bow wow wow yippie yo yippie yay

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    OP: that is a sh!t install but sadly typical for the industry. Most of the time they get paid by the job so there's no incentive to take the time to do it right and make it look neat... or they're under pressure from the contracting agency not to bill for any more hours than they absolutely have to, so management puts pressure on them to hurry hurry HURRY. Either way that's the end result.

    The only way to get what you want out of an installer is to do one yourself the way you want it done, document the process (including pictures) and put together a bid packet and put it out to bid. When cars come back with sloppy work you go to the shop, tell them "no, this isn't right" while tapping the book of requirements they contractually agreed to, and make them fix it until it's 100% right. On their dime.


    edit: I would also love to do a tug test on the forks/ring terminals on that wiring panel and see how many I can pull out. If they used proper crimpers and not the ones Home Depot sells I'd be shocked.
    "The Girl Scouts found several hungry REACT members at the finish line..."

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    Quote Originally Posted by motorola_otaku View Post
    OP: that is a sh!t install but sadly typical for the industry. Most of the time they get paid by the job so there's no incentive to take the time to do it right and make it look neat... or they're under pressure from the contracting agency not to bill for any more hours than they absolutely have to, so management puts pressure on them to hurry hurry HURRY. Either way that's the end result.


    The only way to get what you want out of an installer is to do one yourself the way you want it done, document the process (including pictures) and put together a bid packet and put it out to bid. When cars come back with sloppy work you go to the shop, tell them "no, this isn't right" while tapping the book of requirements they contractually agreed to, and make them fix it until it's 100% right. On their dime.




    edit: I would also love to do a tug test on the forks/ring terminals on that wiring panel and see how many I can pull out. If they used proper crimpers and not the ones Home Depot sells I'd be shocked.

    Home Depot??? Who do you think they are, Mr Moneybags? Thats clearly a Harbor Frieght type of install.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bstafford View Post
    Home Depot??? Who do you think they are, Mr Moneybags? Thats clearly a Harbor Frieght type of install.
    Hahaha. We have a department down here that bought 5 new 2019 Ford PIU's and are trying out the Feniex controllers but Feniex (allegedly) hasn't released a bracket for the 2019, I myself would think they'd all be relatively the same if not identical to previous year models. So the company that installed the Feniex controller without a bracket ended up using some janky velcro, where the controllers fall off or rattle. I'll have to ask them to send me a picture or stop by when I get some more free time.

    It doesn't really surprise me though because this company's reputation of install's are absolutely horrendous.. I'm not sure why the city goes with them but I'm assuming because it's cheap. :/

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    Quote Originally Posted by Motoballa View Post
    Hahaha. We have a department down here that bought 5 new 2019 Ford PIU's and are trying out the Feniex controllers but Feniex (allegedly) hasn't released a bracket for the 2019, I myself would think they'd all be relatively the same if not identical to previous year models. So the company that installed the Feniex controller without a bracket ended up using some janky velcro, where the controllers fall off or rattle. I'll have to ask them to send me a picture or stop by when I get some more free time.

    It doesn't really surprise me though because this company's reputation of install's are absolutely horrendous.. I'm not sure why the city goes with them but I'm assuming because it's cheap. :/
    Sounds like a load of BS since there are no special brackets for the controllers.

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    you lost me at Feniex in any FPIU.. that junk is for vollies, react and skywarn whackers...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Firecpt809 View Post
    you lost me at Feniex in any FPIU.. that junk is for vollies, react and skywarn whackers...
    The Cannons are sweet, but even the Fusions not a fan either. Whelen V-Series, FedSig Micropulse wideangle, Code3 M series, or SOS Intersector surface mount are much better options for wide angle than the Fusion. Fusion is like "worst of both worlds" instead of best of both worlds optics wise IMO.

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    Quote Originally Posted by crazyboy View Post
    Sounds like a load of BS since there are no special brackets for the controllers.
    I don't know anything about Feniex, the department in their current chargers use the Whelen Cencom, I'm not sure why they'd want to try or switch to Feniex, adding to Firecpt809's comment I've actually only seen volunteer FF's use them. Never in a professional case have I once seen any Feniex product installed or used.

    If they don't require brackets perhaps it's the install company being lazy or whatever, I'd be super curious as to when these non-existent brackets come in and how they differ. :P

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    I dont know if the larger Console companies make a console faceplate for Feneix that may be the issue

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    Gamber and Havis both make Feniex 4200 console face plates....more importantly if the console faceplate was the issue it wouldn’t make a difference that it was a 2019 PIU. Faceplates aren’t vehicle specific, consoles themselves are. Shrugs

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