Tech

Adding a Bunch of Affordable Interior Mods to the Bronco Raptor
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When it comes to elevating daily comfort and enjoyment in a vehicle, it’s often the little things that make the biggest difference. We have had very few complaints with our Bronco Raptor, but there are a couple minor ones to be found in the interior. Luckily, we were able to fix three of them for less than $100 in parts from Amazon. This video covers the installs:

The first beef, and biggest, is the fact that Ford installs goat-fur like carpet on the backs of the rear seats. Our Bronco Raptor was ordered with vinyl seats and a vinyl floor. We didn’t want any carpet to have to clean, but there it was. However, in less than 5 minutes we installed a set of Mabett Rear Seat-Back Protectors and effectively covered the rear seat carpet. The rubber protective mats are attached to the factory carpet with simple hook & loop (Velcro) strips, and can be easily removed if needed. They fit perfectly, work as designed, and are well worth the price...
VMP Makes Swapping a Predator GT500 Supercharger on Gen 1& 2 Coyotes Simple
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We all know that the easiest way to crank up the fun-factor of your ride is to throw a little boost at it. In the case of the Coyote platform, adding a few PSI to the mix can spice things up to the tune of a several hundred additional horsepower. If you happen to own one of the 1st or 2nd Generation Coyote V8s, the crew at VMP Performance has been working on a budget friendly way to strap a 2650 TVS blower to your 5.0.

It’s no secret that Predator powered GT500 owner enjoy making major modifications to their factory boosted 5.2L power plants. Many times those modifications include a blower upgrade, which means a lot of OEM Predator superchargers tend to find their way onto the secondary market. That’s were VMP saw an opportunity, and worked to put together the products and process necessary to install a Predator supercharger on a 1st or 2nd Gen Coyote. This is one of those rare circumstances where availability, price point, and relative ease of installation combine to create a...
We Added the Power-Pro Motorized Attachment to our TopLift Pro for the Bronco Raptor
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It's been nearly a year since we starting using our TopLift Pro to save time, and my back, when pulling the rear section of roof off our Bronco Raptor. It has performed flawlessly in that time and has added to the Bronco ownership experience. However, a few months back I picked up an add-on accessory for the TopLift that makes it even easier to use.

TopLift has an electrification kit (called the Power-Pro) that allows you to bolt on a linear actuator to your existing TopLift, which will then handle all the lifting for you. While the standard TopLift takes a 2-3 man job and makes it a 1 man job, the Power-Pro Motorized Attachment makes it a one finger job. Check it out:

I really like that you have the option to add a small 12v battery to the included battery tray and make the lift cord free if you prefer...
F-150 Raptor R Mods from VMP Tuning | Exploring the Limits of the OEM Calibration at 5 Star Tuning
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There’re few things we love more than being on the cutting edge of performance innovation and development. There’s something about this (paraphrased) series of lines from Jeremy Irons’ character in the film Margin Call that resonates with us …. “There’s three ways to make a living in this business; be first, be smarter, or cheat… and it sure is a hell of a lot easier to just be first.” That’s the basic philosophy that has lead our in our Bronco Raptor build, and today we’re carrying it forward in the realm of the F-150 Raptor R.

The R-R is Ford Performance’s latest creation, which combines the body and running gear of a Raptor 37 with the power plant of an S550 GT500 Mustang. The addition of the 5.2L Supercharged V8 engine has propelled the Raptor R to the top of the list of Ford’s I’d love to own. However, that’s a story for another day in the very near future. Today we have an R strapped to 5 Star Tuning’s dyno for some cutting edge testing of VMP Performance Predator...
Do The ROAR!!! | SPD Performance Downpipes Install/Test on the Bronco Raptor
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You’ve been hearing it from us here on SVTP for years; the Holy Trinity of starter mods is Intake, Tune, and Exhaust. Tackling those three areas will typically show decent gains on any vehicle. When it comes to our project Bronco Raptor, besides our Whipple Intercooler and Turbosmart BOV, there’s not much on the market intake wise (yet). And you guys have seen us lay down massive gains with a Whipple Calibration. But just a few days ago we were able to snag an early set of SPD Performance Downpipes fitted with High-Flow GESI cats. The exhaust side of the more-power equation was now open for business.

It’s been no secret that the factory downpipes found on many EcoBoost engines can hamper performance. They are designed with packaging, NVH, and assembly constraints that the aftermarket can simply sidestep. As such, companies like SPD Performance have found great success developing higher-flowing replacement systems for many Ford platforms. Their latest venture into the Blue Oval...
Vintage Tools for Maintaining Classic Cars | NPD Shop Tour
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If you’re going to have classic cars, it’s probably a good idea to have some classic tools to keep them running. That’s exactly what we found when we strolled into the shop area of the National Parts Depot 200+ vehicle deep car collection. With all these cars under one roof, it’s not surprising that they have a full shop right in the middle of it all and man whose full-time job is caring for the mechanical condition of each piece on display.

So it’s not surprising that NPD has a collection of vintage shop tools that you’re just not going to find in a typical shop. Have a car with way-pre-OBD II fuel injection? They have a diagnostic computer that size of a small truck that can print out sensor data for you? Need to set the dwell on a points style distributor? They have what’s essentially a distributor dyno to help you make adjustments. This vid gives you a good idea of what they have to work with in the shop:


I could probably...
SVTP Tool-Tech | Solder Seal Butt Connectors | The Best Way to Splice
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Few things in auto repair can be more frustrating than trying to track down an electrical problem. If you’re dealing with some previously modified wiring it can be even more fun. If this is an issue you’re facing, chances are you’ll be making some splices. Wiring work is simply a fact of life if you spend enough time in the car modding game, and there’s one cardinal rule that must be followed : “Do it once, and do it right.” The last thing you want to have to do is tear back into some custom wiring later on down the road.

To that end, we’ve started using a newer style of butt connector in all of our wire splices. Gone are the days of the broke ass standard crimp style connector, and we’ve even retired the marine style connector with integrated heat-shrink sheathing and waterproof sealant. The best product out there now combines the features of the marine style connector with a little ring of heat activated solder in the center of the connector. The idea being that once the wires...
1-of-1 Prototype | 6.7L Powerstroke Ford Racing Turbo Upgrade Kit | Rare Find
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Sometimes you just miss on the follow-through. That’s the story on a lot of ideas and projects. The best laid plans of mice and men, and such. That’s basically what we have laying before us here. What you’re looking at is a 1-of-1 prototype Ford Racing 6.7L Powerstroke Diesel V8 Turbo Upgrade kit. I know, weird right? Ford Racing Performance Parts (now rebranded Ford Performance Racing Parts) has never really dipped their toes into the performance diesel market, yet here’s this kit. Not surprisingly, there’s a bit of a story to go along with it.

Think way back late 2014-early 2015. The updated 2015 Powerstroke equipped Super Duty is just hitting the dealership lots. It was cranking out 440 HP and 860 lb-ft (up from 390/400 HP and 735/800 lb-ft for the 2011-14 models), due in large part to a shiny new single 88mm GT37 turbo. It replaced the earlier somewhat unique single-sequential turbo that was prone to failure at about 100,000 miles. It featured ceramic ball bearings that just...
Motorcraft FL-2062-A Oil Filter Options Reviewed | 3.0L & 2.7L Nano EcoBoost Engines
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If you want to start a guaranteed 3-page flame war on most car forums, there’s no better question to ask than “What’s the best oil/oil filter?” Well this time around we’re going to take a look at every filter I could lay my hands on for the Bronco Raptor. This review is going to pull double duty because the FL-2062-A sized filters being inspected also fit other Ford engines, including the 2.7L EcoBoost V6. A derivative of this line of filters is even specified for some GT350 and GT500 Mustangs. So we have a lot to cover.

Below you’ll find a video and several detailed photos covering every filter we’ve managed to get our hands on. We also took very detailed measurements and observations of the materials and construction methods used for each filter. This is not the be-all-end-all of this story. As new filters become available we’ll add them to the list. If you find one you would like to send us, you can send it here:

SVTPerformance
4009 Highway 17 S - 1010
North Myrtle Beach, SC...
Yes - You Need an Oil Separator | Your Valves Will Thank You
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For years, you’ve seen us extolling the virtues of running an oil separator your boosted Ford. While most started to really pay attention to their benefits around the time of the supercharged 1999 SVT F-150 Lightning introduction, the addition of direct injection to modern Ford engines has increased the importance to adding one to a your engine to a heretofore unseen level. That’s because the old engines mostly just had issues with soaking the intercooler core with engine oil from the PVC system. However, EcoBoost engines suffer that issue, along with oil baking on the back of the intake valves. An issue known as coking. Plus burning engine oil effectively lowers the octane rating of the fuel you're burning, which can increase the likelihood of detonation. That’s why one of the first mods we made to our Bronco Raptor was to cobble together a homemade oil...
SVTP Tool-Tech | Lisle 20750 Remote Starter Switch | Reviewed
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Sometimes you need an extra set of hands when none are available. That’s when a tool like we’re reviewing today comes in handy. It’s a remote starter trigger. If you’ve spent any time at all on YouTube, you’ve likely seen a particular ‘Tuber use his (which he refers to as his “Lone Wolf 2000”. His continued use of a starter trigger, while reviving long forgotten rides, shows just how handy one of these things can be.

A remote start trigger isn’t a particularly sophisticated device. It’s essentially just a finger activated 12V switch. It works by connecting the circuit across your starter control solenoid, which is usually easily accessible under the hood on older Fords. This allows you to skip running around to the driver’s seat in order to turn the key. Yes; you could just jump the solenoid with a screw driver, but that may force you to stand in a particular position to crank the engine over. The remote trigger will allow you to move freely around the front of the vehicle in...
VMP Performance Apex Predator Lid & Race/Street Intercooler Cores | A Detailed Look
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I know you’ve heard the saying; “work smarter, not harder.” That’s exactly the mantra VMP Performance has been pursuing with their latest round of mods for 2020+ Shelby GT500 Mustangs. The 5.2L Predator V8 mills those cars are blessed with from the factory are potent, but there’s always room for improvement. Throwing more boost at it may be the simple solution, but what if I told you that you could get more power without increasing stress on the engine? What if it works even better when pulley down and add some boost? Do I have your attention now?

Justin Starkey and the crew at VMP have spent the better part of a year working on intercooler modifications for the Predator engine; and it looks like they have struck pay-dirt. VMP has finally released their long awaited Apex Predator intercooler lid, which features a host of benefits over the stock unit. To take advantage of the gains found in the lid they also have a couple intercooler core options to help keep the air charge at the...
2018 Focus ST Mods | MBRP Exhaust - Intercooler - Downpipe - Tune
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I’ve made my fair share of trips to the SVT/Ford Performance engineering offices over the years, and one thing I always pay attention is the employee parking lot (which used to be covered in burnout/drifting marks that were visible from space). The cars parked there will tell you a lot about guys who work there, and there is certainly a trend that’s easily spotted. Back in the early SVT days you were likely to see an inordinate number of Contour SVTs. That eventually gave way to the SVT Focus, and then the focus ST. At any point in time it seemed like a 3rd of the cars in that lot would fall into one of the model ranges.

There’s a good reason for that. Those engineers designed those cars to be extremely fun, capable, and sporty; while still being comfortable for daily driver duty. SVT/FP’s small cars have always been the automotive equivalent of a Swiss Army Knife for the performance enthusiast. I can’t tell you the number of people I’ve known with a Cobra or GT500 home in the...
Pro-Dyno to the Rescue | Broken 2014 5.0 F-150
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Loyalty is important. Be it from man or machine, it’s good to know that when your back is to the wall that there’s someone/thing you can turn to. That’s why I encourage everyone to support your local performance shops, dealerships, restaurants/bars, etc. One of the establishments I have been a long time customer of is Pro-Dyno in Fort Mill, SC. I know when I have an issue Paul and the crew there will have my back, and that’s exactly what went down a few months back.

My father has a 2014 Coyote F-150 he bought new and on which he has subsequently racked up over 176,000 miles. Recently, the 9.75 rear end started to make some noise, and I knew exactly what it was. For some reason, that era of Ford trucks had an issue with failing pinion seals letting in a little moisture which pits the rollers in the front pinion bearing. When this happens it’s often more of an annoyance than an urgent matter. However, Dad likes piling the miles on this rig so I figured I should get it fixed for him...
Eliminate Belt Slip NOW!!! | VMP Atlas and Claw Adjustable Idler Bracket Inspection
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The performance of a supercharged car hinges on one simple aspect of the boost building mechanism, the ability to spin the blower. If you can’t turn the rotors (or impeller) at the desired RPM you’re leaving power on the table. Belt slip is the thief-in-the-night of that mechanical system. Everything else can be perfect, but if the belt is slipping on the pulleys you’re not going to see the horsepower you’d expect. With the goal of ensuring that pony makes it to the pavement, the crew at VMP Performance set out to develop a series of products designed for blower car owners to get the most out of their supercharger setups.

“With force induction, it’s easier on the entire system to extract all the performance possible with a given pulley setup than it is to just keep pulleying-down to chase more power.”, said Justin Starkey, owner of VMP Performance. This philosophy led VMP to produce several combinations of Coyote FEAD (Front Engine Accessory Drive) components, centered around...
615HP - 7.3L MEGAZILLA Crate Engine is Here!!! | PRI 2022
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Hanging out in the Ford Booth at PRI is always one of the highlights of the show. Not only is it manned by a great group of incredibly knowledgeable guys, but if you stick around long enough nearly everyone you know in the Ford performance industry will stroll through. That booth essentially becomes an unofficial meeting space for those of us deep in the Blue Oval game. Then there's the parts...

This year the Ford Performance Racing Parts guys debuted the all ne 7.3L MEGAZILLA Crate Engine. Cranking out 615HP and 640 LbFt of torque on pump gas. Even more impressively, it makes over 500 LbFt from 2,500-6,000RPMs. Mike Goodwin, Production Manager for Engines/Drivetrain/Calibrations, took time to walk us through the features of the new pushrod bruiser and Ford's other new products on display. Check out the vid:


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The new front-inlet intake manifold is a dead giveaway that you're not looking at...
TopLift Pro Makes Pulling the BRaptor Roof a 1-Man Job | Full Review
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In the few short months we’ve owned our Bronco Raptor I’ve had the factory hard-top off and on more than a few times. While the BRaptor looks killer stripped down, it is a bit of a PITA to remove the bolted on rear section of top. That set us out searching for a better solution for the removal and reinstall process, which is where TopLift Pros came in.

As it stands, removal of the aft most section of Bronco top is best done with three sets of hands. It’s not that the roof section is heavy; rather it is just awkward to handle. Weight-wise, one person could easily lift it. However, finesse is needed more than brute force in order to not mar any of the finished surfaces. So not wanting to have to find a couple helpers every time I was going to R&R the top, I started searching for a little mechanical advantage. After a little research we settled on ordering a rolling lift system from TopLift Pros out of Melbourne, FL. It would make top removal a one-man job...
BRaptor gets a Homemade ("JLT") Oil Separator | 1,000 Mile Review
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I can't believe I haven't posted this yet. The day after picking up my BRaptor I headed over to @Livernois Motorsports for a little bone-stock dyno session. However, before spinning the rollers I wanted to get an oil separator plumbed into the intake tract. Certain EcoBoost engines (such as the Raptor's 3.0L) are particularly susceptible to coking up the intake valves because they don't have a port fuel injector spraying on the back of the valve. That fuel spray goes a long way towards keeping things clean. Not having that means keeping oil from the PCV system off the valves is paramount.

Luckily, I had a pile of old JLT oil separator parts laying around. I had used these units on several Fords in the past, and always been happy with the way they performed. So with a little help (and loaner tools) from the guys at...
Bronco Raptor on the Lift | Video Inspection of the Undercarriage
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While we were installing our prototype Whipple Intercooler at Pro-Dyno we decided to take a closer look at out Bronco Raptor on the lift. It did not disappoint.
Go Topless More Often | Test Fitting a BronCover on the Bronco Raptor
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There’s just something about owning a Bronco that makes the ladies in your life want to go topless. That’s just a fact, don’t ask me to try to explain it. However, the last thing you want when you’re running wild and free is to get caught out without the proper protection. That’s where the fine folks at BronCover come into play.

One of the ever present threats of owning a convertible is getting caught out in inclimate weather with your top down. With a Bronco that anxiety can be compounded by the fact that you can remove the doors as well. If you have a hard-top that makes about half-a-vehicle worth of body panels you’ve pulled off, and that takes a little time commitment to reinstall. That’s why I like having a BronCover in the cargo area as a little added insurance.

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Every BronCover comes in this awesome reusable storage bag. I just throw it in the back any time we pop the top.

BronCover makes an extremely high...


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