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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone!
I am hoping to get some great advice from people here. My organization was donated a 2018 Ranger XP 900 Crew, and it was modified into an ambulance. As you can see from the pictures, the rear seats and cargo bed are gone, and it is replaced with a fabricated aluminum ambulance box. It holds a Stryker gurney, which weighs #100. It has a drag sled hanging on the right side (in 2 parts) and it weighs 50#.
The total weight of the Ranger Ambulance is 2720 lbs!
Base weight for this model is 1570 lbs.
Cargo box weight capacity is listed as 1000 lbs
Maximum Payload is listed as 1750 lbs
It has been running this way for 4 summers now, with about 800 miles on it.
As you can tell by the factory numbers, we are over budget on weight for this thing. I am pretty sure the drive belt has been hourglass-smoked. You have to give it a bit of throttle, and then it lurches into gear. Seems to run OK after going, but from my readings, the belt is done. I have a new SuperATV Extreme Badass CVT Drive Belt for 2013-2019 Polaris Ranger that I got from Amazon. When fully loaded with a driver, passenger, patient and attendant in the back, along with the go-bag, we are pushing another 800-1000 pounds, depending on the weight of the people.
As I said, we are over budget on weight.
By my calculations, I need to lose about 600 pounds of ambulance box. Probably everything above the 1st foot of bed. It was a pretty cool idea, and the box was built/donated by a very well meaning group of people.
Is there any disagreement with me on my calculations, or assumptions? It is tippy side to side while driving if on rough terrain, so that is never done. It was worse before the stock wheels/tires and shocks were replaced with stronger components.
This is only driven on asphalt or dirt roads. Never "4-wheeling". And it has a governor that limits it to 25mph.
It's purpose it to transport a patient when needed, and no ride is > 15 minutes of driving.

My thoughts are to cut off the top 2/3 to 3/4 of the box, and replace it with 1/2 hoops and canvas, like an old army troop transport. The canvas could provide some relief from rain, but since it is not enclosed anyway, everyone gets wet on a rainy ride.
OK, please try to be constructive with your thoughts. I am trying to improve this transport so that we don't ruin the vehicle, or put a patient/occupant at risk.
Doc
 

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An easy addition would be wheel spacers. Also what kind of tire pressure do you run? I've worked on a hunting machine that has a giant rack on top and a massive box in bed to hold water, dogs, and even has 2 seats on top of bed for hunters it's tippy as well but it can be tweeked to ride better.
 

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Look at commercial skid units with weights about 150…. We have a brush fire skid and med skid at our FH and they work well on our aging gator… easy on and off! One example at link below….

My big concern would be high center of gravity with all gear, patient, EMT and potential of tip even on pavement… if you need cover add a lightweight fabric top to skid!



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Also think your design shifts too much weight rear of rear axle thus unloading front axle(wheelie)… this will add to instability….

Thoughts get a hood rack and load stokes baskets and jump bags to front to more evenly distribute weight… having ridden on one with a patient I can tell you it’s tippy(even with small skid) in part due to occupant load being so high….

I’d consider spacers and possibly upgraded suspension…. extreme weight loss is also in order.

Also take a look at Polaris government/commercial options to get some ideas you may adapt!



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I'd highly recommend some gear reduction in the transmission. It'll help keep you from burning too many belts. Some custom shock work would also greatly improve the ride. Also, make sure to clean your clutches really well before installing that new belt.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
These are great comments everyone. I will make a post on the progress. I like the idea of widening the stance with some 2" spacers on the rear wheels. It has only used 1 belt in 90 hours / 800 miles. I don't know if that is excessive, but probably. It's 4 years old. I got it washed, and the next thing is servicing the machine. Then it will be modification time.
 

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One of our members posted several years ago on using HDMW for skid plates and more. It is slick like Teflon and will not grab on rocks like aluminum can. It is extremely tough, and you can use wood working tools to shape and drill. I used it on a 2006 also made low profile door thresholds 6" or how ever high you like to keep feet in for unexpected incidents.
 
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