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Thread: radio compatibility?

  1. #1
    Gonna buy me a Mercury BoulevardRide's Avatar
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    Default radio compatibility?

    what year factory radio/cassette will work in my 96 mgm? i.e. will a 2000 explorer unit work, they are easier to find... and cheaper. mine looks like this
    https://www.ebay.com/itm/OEM-1995-19...53.m1438.l2649
    96 MGM

    Cruisin up and down the road...

  2. #2
    Hobbit
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    That's a standard Ford radio that was used in many models and many years. You can even use newer radios as long as they are 1.5 din in the back to clear the vent duct but will have to swap the connectors or get a harness adapter if you don't want to cut the factory connectors.

    2000 Explorer will have newer connectors so you will need a conversion harness or cut your old connectors and solder on new ones.
    Last edited by Mr Bean; 02-10-2020 at 08:41 PM.

  3. #3
    Gonna buy me a Mercury BoulevardRide's Avatar
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    Thanks Mr Bean. I would prefer a straight swap, no adapters or cutting wires.

    The ads i have seen say my radio is 95/96/97, are these the only years that will plug right in then? does it have to be from a Panther, or will a different Ford product work. pickup, explorer, etc. thank you
    96 MGM

    Cruisin up and down the road...

  4. #4
    Hobbit
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    Any Ford radio will work. Just make sure it uses same connectors as yours and it's narrower in the rear. Ranger, Explorer, etc.


  5. #5
    Gonna buy me a Mercury BoulevardRide's Avatar
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    Ok thanks. time to get a set of those pin removal tools and take a look at the connections...
    96 MGM

    Cruisin up and down the road...

  6. #6
    I post a lot...
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    Quote Originally Posted by BoulevardRide View Post
    Ok thanks. time to get a set of those pin removal tools and take a look at the connections...
    Just make your own out of a wire hanger.

    Once they are in bend both slightly outward while pulling out slightly. It just unhook pretty easily.
    2017 Buick Enclave 3.6 (Burgundy/Beige)
    2019 Volvo S60 Inscription (Crystal White / Blond)
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    1989 Grand Marquis LS (Cabernet/Grey), 1989 Lincoln Town Car SS (White/Blue), 2004 Mercury Grand Marquis Ultimate (White/Black)

    Quote Originally Posted by Lincolnmania View Post
    if its got tits or tires it's bound to give you trouble

  7. #7
    I'm an air-conditioned gypsy gadget73's Avatar
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    I've made them and I have 2 commercially made sets. Use reasonably stiff wire, some coat hangers are a bit on the feeble side. They're cheap enough to buy too. One set came in the car, when I couldn't find them I bought another set for like 3 bucks.

    86 Lincoln Town Car (Galactica).
    5.0 HO, CompCams XE258,Scorpion 1.72 roller rockers, 3.55 K code rear, tow package, BHPerformance ported E7 heads, Tmoss Explorer intake, 65mm throttle body, Hedman 1 5/8" headers, 2.5" dual exhaust, ASP underdrive pulley

    91 Lincoln Mark VII LSC SE, triple black (Timewarp) - poly front bushings, KYB struts and shocks, Holley SystemMax1 lower intake, SilverFox AOD valve body,

    1984 Lincoln Continental TurboDiesel - rolls coal

    Quote Originally Posted by phayzer5 View Post
    I drive a Lincoln. I can't be bothered to shift like the peasants and rabble rousers

  8. #8
    I post a lot...
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    Yeah, they are cheap but sometimes you just don't feel like running to the store!

    Of course if you use Amazon prime there is always this

    https://www.amazon.com/SCOSCHE-DT1-R...s%2C154&sr=8-3
    2017 Buick Enclave 3.6 (Burgundy/Beige)
    2019 Volvo S60 Inscription (Crystal White / Blond)
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    1989 Grand Marquis LS (Cabernet/Grey), 1989 Lincoln Town Car SS (White/Blue), 2004 Mercury Grand Marquis Ultimate (White/Black)

    Quote Originally Posted by Lincolnmania View Post
    if its got tits or tires it's bound to give you trouble

  9. #9

    Default

    If you're not in a hurry I've got the tools and a couple radios in my junk box. They're AM/FM CD mostly; if you want a cassette I can't help. All the radios in my junk box have Ford connectors on them, even if they're aftermarket.

    Edit: by "not in a hurry" I mean "I'm at sea until March 15th"...
    Last edited by bgreywolf; 02-17-2020 at 09:29 AM.

  10. #10
    fomoco panthers !
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    Too bad I am on vacation for awhile or I might be able to help. I have some radios and the tools too.

  11. #11
    Gonna buy me a Mercury BoulevardRide's Avatar
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    I bought a nice set of tools and the radio came right out. There is what looks like a ground tab on the back of the case with no ground wire visible in the dash.

    If you look at the pic above from Mr Bean's post you can see the tab i mean, right above the antenna hole.

    I am wondering if i should bother adding a ground wire to the tab? As my symptoms are sort of like a bad ground, the radio only works when it wants to, but when it works, everything works perfect. or should i just buy a new 25 year old radio?
    96 MGM

    Cruisin up and down the road...

  12. #12

    Default

    That ground tab is used on some cars, not others. It certainly wouldn't hurt to run a ground, but I'm guessing you have something wrong internal to the radio, or in the radio wiring.
    Does the radio shut off, or just lose sound? We've talked about removal but not the actual symptoms.

    If you want to swap the radio, another possible route is an older radio like the one in your Lincoln. The connectors were the same from the mid-late 80s until the early 2000s on various Fords. Then use an aftermarket installation kit to fill the extra space with a small pocket. Again, if you're not in a hurry, I have a couple of adapter kits in a box, and they're on the "spring cleaning disposal" list.

    You might also consider using your Lincoln radio to test the wiring in the Mercury; even though it's physically a different size it SHOULD plug in without any adapters. I do say SHOULD because the late 80s Fords sometimes weren't as consistent with plugs as they should have been...

    And, again, if you can wait until mid-March I have a box of aftermarket radio bits that is on the spring cleaning list. I'd rather give bits away than trash them, and most of them aren't worth the cost of shipping, so they're pretty much waiting for yard sale season.

  13. #13
    I'm an air-conditioned gypsy gadget73's Avatar
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    ground should be provided in the harness. Could be loose/worn pins or some other wiring issue though. Pull the radio and flex the harness. If its got a busted wire you should be able to make it cut in and out.

    86 Lincoln Town Car (Galactica).
    5.0 HO, CompCams XE258,Scorpion 1.72 roller rockers, 3.55 K code rear, tow package, BHPerformance ported E7 heads, Tmoss Explorer intake, 65mm throttle body, Hedman 1 5/8" headers, 2.5" dual exhaust, ASP underdrive pulley

    91 Lincoln Mark VII LSC SE, triple black (Timewarp) - poly front bushings, KYB struts and shocks, Holley SystemMax1 lower intake, SilverFox AOD valve body,

    1984 Lincoln Continental TurboDiesel - rolls coal

    Quote Originally Posted by phayzer5 View Post
    I drive a Lincoln. I can't be bothered to shift like the peasants and rabble rousers

  14. #14
    Gonna buy me a Mercury BoulevardRide's Avatar
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    Well my highly qualified mechanic (me) performed the sophisticated electronics diagnosis procedure (wiggling the harness) with no new life seen in the radio. So i ordered up a new used one, will see how that does. that is the extent of my electrical knowledge and diagnostic ambition to be honest. Well i did add a ground wire but that didn't fix it either. thanks for the help..
    96 MGM

    Cruisin up and down the road...

  15. #15
    I'm an air-conditioned gypsy gadget73's Avatar
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    check for power and ground. One is constant hot, one is key-on. Forget which color is what but with the engine running you should have 2 wires in the power plug that read voltage. Turn the lights on and you'll get one more. Think the dash light is blue/pink. I want to say constant power is yellow/black. Can't remember the other one.

    86 Lincoln Town Car (Galactica).
    5.0 HO, CompCams XE258,Scorpion 1.72 roller rockers, 3.55 K code rear, tow package, BHPerformance ported E7 heads, Tmoss Explorer intake, 65mm throttle body, Hedman 1 5/8" headers, 2.5" dual exhaust, ASP underdrive pulley

    91 Lincoln Mark VII LSC SE, triple black (Timewarp) - poly front bushings, KYB struts and shocks, Holley SystemMax1 lower intake, SilverFox AOD valve body,

    1984 Lincoln Continental TurboDiesel - rolls coal

    Quote Originally Posted by phayzer5 View Post
    I drive a Lincoln. I can't be bothered to shift like the peasants and rabble rousers

  16. #16
    Gonna buy me a Mercury BoulevardRide's Avatar
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    Well I got a decent deal on the ebay radio and it works great. Nice to have tunes again. I ran out of low offers so the mrs. had to make 2 more before it got accepted. got it for about the same price as the cheap explorer and pickup radios, well a little more but i like keeping things original looking.
    Thanks for the testing tips but i don't really like sticking my probe into tight holes i can't see very well. while testing for ground on my cig lighter something shorted out, now i have no power to run my cooler on road trips. always something.
    one day i hope to have a car from the 70s with a wire from the key switch to the coil and not much else as far as electronics. and points ignition. rode an old harley for years with a grand total of 4 wires, including lights. that i can understand.
    96 MGM

    Cruisin up and down the road...

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