Freak Accident or Weakness Found? Wheel Speed Sensor...

Discussion in 'Ford SVT Raptor General Discussions [GEN 1]' started by BigJ, Oct 16, 2010.

  1. BigJ

    BigJ FRF Addict

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    JoyJoy and I spent last week in Vegas for work. We drove the Raptor down, planning to spend an evening or two with MarkT and lvdesertdawg; those guys know the greater Vegas area like the back of their hands.

    Wednesday evening we met up and headed out. I left 'er in 4x2, went into off road mode, tapped the squiggly nanny and locked the rear for some extra fun. We got maybe a 3/4 mile in on a firetroad smooth trail... and my dash basically blew up with all sorts of lights, warnings and chimes. The ABS light came on, the ebrake light lit, she took herself out of off road mode and unlocked the rear, the message center cycled the messages "Hilll Descent Control Fault" and "Check Brake System", and the squiggle car icon cycled between steady on and flashing. I tried restarting, going in and out of 4x4 (which she did allow)... nothing helped. We decided to turn around; being as far away from home as we were, I didn't want to chance anything.

    Side note: on the way back we ran into this fella coming to find us. But that's a story for another thread :mrgreen:

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    Anywho, both Mark and 'dawg recommended I bypass the other Ford dealer and instead make the 30 mile drive to Team Ford. We did, limping the whole way. I couldn't go over 60mph without the dash flashing and dinging at me constantly.

    Team Ford is amazing, point blank. We showed up at 6pm, explained our situation (being 500 miles from home) and by 630pm they had found the problem: a broken passenger side rear wheel speed sensor.

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    These sensors are (1) side specific, (2) SVT specific, (3) not swappable truck to truck, (4) not stocked at even the nation's largest Raptor dealer.

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    No doubt something either snagged on the sensor lead, or simply whacked the sensor itself. Team Ford really stepped up and did their best to take care of me, even paying to overnight the part from Dearborn, but the bottom line was we had to wait until Friday nite before the truck was ready, and I had to pay for a the new sensor and install, since its clearly not a warranty issue.

    PN: FMC AL3Z 2C190 A - $71.52
    Diagnose and install ran right around $150

    Now here's my question. Given how catastrophic this failure was on the trail (4x4 still worked and I was able to drive out, but she was clearly in "limp mode" and I have no idea what state the nannies/brake system was in) should this sensor be better hidden or at least protected behind a plate? Here's the new one installed; this pic was taken from the front of the truck looking back.
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    What say you? A one in a million freak accident? Or have I found an actual design weakness in our Raptors?

    (Everyone I talked to at Team Ford felt it was a design weakness exposed by an unlucky accident. These guys are serious racers (these are the guys that did the Baja Class 8 truck and paid for the Born in Baja vid), and even though this is the first time they've seen this failure, they're going to talk about stocking these sensors, and talk about their concerns with Ford and the Raptor team).
     
  2. bstoner59

    bstoner59 does it come in shmedium?

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    I would say it's a design issue...that's right out in front of the shock to get hit by all sorts of debris.
     
  3. ruffstuff

    ruffstuff Full Access Member

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    Design weakness. (1) Looks way too easy for a shrub/vegetation to snag the wire, and (2) is the sensor body plastic? Metal would be better.
     
  4. MagicMtnDan

    MagicMtnDan FRF Addict

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    First of all:

    1. Great work on the write-up and pics BigJ - your misfortune (bad luck) helps all of us - thanks for taking the time to share it with us!
    2. Great work from Team Ford (AGAIN)! Yet another reason why they're the best.

    This does look to be a design flaw and while the sensor appears to be somewhat protected by the tire/wheel, it's obviously not enough and the problem caused by a broken unit is significant enough to require a re-design.

    It looks to me like the mounting bolt could be used to attach a pretty simple piece of steel that acts as a shield. Here's a really rough, quick concept done in PaintBrush:

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    View attachment 1138
     
  5. Nacho

    Nacho FRF Addict

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    great heads up. I say the same as dan. fab up some kind of shield for the wire.
     
  6. ChadB

    ChadB Full Access Member

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    Jason- sorry to hear about the truck. Our Vegas roads and your truck don't get along well it seems. Last time out the fuel door, now the speed sensor. Who hepled you out at Team? If it was this past week, out trucks might have spent the night together...If still in town and want to go for a drive before you leave, let me know.
     
  7. SVTRay

    SVTRay FRF Addict

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    Small design flaw and something the aftermarket could could fix seemly easily.
     
  8. GTS RAPTOR

    GTS RAPTOR Full Access Member

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    Yep that's what I was thinking, looks like a rock might of deflected off the shock shield and hit the sensor.
    Dan's ideal of a metal shield is a good one, as long as the metal is thick enough to absorb an impact without bending into the sensor and breaking it. You'd probably have to use a longer bolt to mount it but that's really a non issue.
    That's just bad luck J, but nice write up and pics, and Kudos to Team Ford for getting you back on the road as fast as they could!

    Now..........what did the MAN want???:popcorn:
     
  9. GasGasMan

    GasGasMan Full Access Member

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    I would not say it's a "design flaw".
    No different than a rock going through the radiator.

    Off roading is tough on any vehicle.
     
  10. SVTRay

    SVTRay FRF Addict

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    Yes sir, I was actually going to say just that but figured small design flaw wouldn't draw as much fire. Anyhow, this isn't anything I would really worry about atm.
     

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