Designing around side-curtain airbag in 2017 Transit Van - Ford Transit USA Forum
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-05-2017, 12:55:PM Thread Starter
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Designing around side-curtain airbag in 2017 Transit Van

Wondering how conversions in the 2017 vans are dealing with the Safety Canopy side-curtain airbags in their designs since they are now standard? We are about to order a 2017 High roof cargo van for conversion. My plan was to do upper cabinets along the length of the van, mounted above the airbags so as to not interfere. I've since seen pictures of the interior and it looks like the airbags are mounted pretty high which would make for very shallow cabinets if mounted above (also in the van I believe the side curtain airbags are only along the driver side). Only way I see to order without, excluding ordering the RV prep package which I don't want, is if you have 10,360 GVWR only, and get the 2 way manual seats, neither of which I am getting. Don't know that I want to disconnect the airbags, but also don't want to give up cabinet space along one side. Wondering if people are choosing to work around them by disconnecting or choosing to incorporate the airbags in their designs? Thanks.
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-05-2017, 01:12:PM
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-05-2017, 01:32:PM
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The side curtains go to the ceiling, are on both sides but only at the b column behind the cockpit seats.
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-05-2017, 01:59:PM Thread Starter
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Thanks richards. I had seen Rascorp's original post about removing (something I knew I didn't want to take on), but had somehow missed Wooded7's post asking about deactivating the rear airbags without affecting the rest of the airbag system. Looks like the only suggestions he got were Rascorp's removal info or a suggestion to use airbag simulators (which I'd be nervous about using as a permanent solution). So with that thread being a year old, it doesn't seem like anyone has found a simple way to just inactivate them. Without there being more options for ordering without, I guess I'm back to the drawing board and will find a way to incorporate them into my design while losing the least amount of storage space. If anyone has done such a design/build I'd love to know how you decided to work around them. Thanks!
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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-05-2017, 02:16:PM Thread Starter
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DrJean, so in the van the side curtain airbags don't go the length of the van as they do in the wagon? Having them run the length of a wagon used to transport passengers makes sense vs. them running the length of a cargo van, but the only information I was finding on the safety canopy side-curtain airbags was that they appeared to run the whole length (couldn't find info specific to van vs. wagon). And if this is the case, to confirm, if set off would they just affect the area of the passenger and drivers location in the cockpit, thus having cabinets along the top behind pillar B not be affected? If they don't run the length of the cargo van then that is good news!
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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-05-2017, 02:31:PM Thread Starter
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This leads me to also ask a question (embarrassingly) about what is then behind the black plastic strip that runs along the length of the van on the driver's side? I had assumed it was related to the side-curtain airbags but if they don't run the length then I'm curious as to exactly what it is. I'm sure wiring, but if anyone can tell me to what exactly that would be greatly appreciated. I trust asking you all versus the dealer for an educated answer.
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-05-2017, 06:31:PM
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that black plastic strip is the cover of a trough the wiring goes in for the rear tail lights and whatnot. in cargo vans the side airbags come to an end a few inches behind the drivers/passengers seats.

2016 transit cargo 250 MR, LWB, 3.5 eco, 3.31 limited slip
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-05-2017, 06:53:PM
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If you are ordering a HR cargo van, what air bags are you trying to work around? Most of the ones I have seen do not go past the front passenger area.
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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-05-2017, 10:25:PM
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There's really no space lost imo from the airbags at that column. You can install over the slider/side doors if you're not too tall (otherwise I think you'd be ducking each entry time.)

The long rectangular plastic runner contains the wiring for the tail lights, and in my case the 12v outlet in the rear and I suspect also drops down the corner to the the tow light plugin. I think I still have maybe 8-10 " of space "above" it prior to completed ceiling build....
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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-06-2017, 07:41:AM Thread Starter
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Thanks everyone for the information! So relieved. I love that I can come on here and find answers I can't find (at least easily) in Ford's own information. Really appreciate the help and I'm sure I'll be asking for more once we start work. We go order ours today!

CrewVanMan, to answer your question, I was confused. I saw that the side-canopy airbags were standard in 2017, but all the photos I was finding showed them going the length of the van - but now I know that was obviously only the case for the wagon and not the cargo van. In my moment of panic a day before ordering I put out my question to the forum and I'm so glad I did because now I know I was mistaken.
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