free '99 Explorer rear axle...new project - Ranger-Forums - The Ultimate Ford Ranger Resource


Drivetrain Tech General discussion of drivetrain for the Ford Ranger.

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Old 07-01-2007
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free '99 Explorer rear axle...new project...help me do it.

A friend of mine at work has a buddy who is parting out a wrecked '99 Explorer XLT with only 60K miles. I happened to mention thet I would like to have the rear disc brake equipped axle from it and I was told that if I took it out, I could have it for free. Needless to say, after bleeding a little, getting dirty, and a little cussing, an hour drive, and some beneficial experience about how it all comes apart, there is one sitting in my garage. I have all the brake connections and brackets etc. and if I need any more of the parts, it will still be there. I am just starting to read into the swap info and could use some links and tips about this swap. It is a 3.73 limited slip unit (unusual..most came with 4:10s I think) and compared to my 3.55 open stock 8.8 unit it shouldn't affect the speedo much but I have already contacted BamaChips about possibly reprogramming my tuner to correct it. The Explorer was wrecked in the front so the rear axle was not affected or bent. I plan to:

Strip, clean, and repaint the whole assembly
Change out the fluid and replace with synthetic (including the friction modifier if needed)
Replace the rotors and pads (the pads are about 1/2 but might as well put new ones in) and make sure the calipers are functioning correctly and perhaps replace the wheels bearings if necessary.

I currently have the rear spring hangers flipped in my lowered truck and will obviously have to put them back since the Expo rear axle is an above the spring unit. I bought a used DJM rear flip kit from another guy a few months ago so I can use some of those parts to put this in and keep my rear at 3" down. I'm not interested in going any lower than this so don't ask...lol! I think I will need to relocate one or both of the shock mounts but I have access to some big 440V Miller welders and experinced welding guys at work so doing some mods won't be a problem. I need to know about parking brake, ABS, and brake proportioning issues with this swap so I need the experienced modders to help me. I want to get a solid game plan and a smooth transition in place before I go tearing into my daily driver and it want everything to operate as much as a factory installation as possible. The 3.73 should help my performance and towing just a little and the rear discs are just a cool addition and can only help the pathetic braking ability of my stock drums.

Last edited by klc317; 07-01-2007 at 04:33 PM.
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Old 07-01-2007
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i thought most explorers came with 3.73s?

and if you get Lucas gear oil you dont need to worry about the friction modifier
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Old 07-01-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 99ranger4x4
i thought most explorers came with 3.73s?

and if you get Lucas gear oil you dont need to worry about the friction modifier
Maybe....dunno for sure about the ratio. I know that the '96 Explorer my dad used to have ahad 4.10s in it. Must depend on the model and year.
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Old 07-01-2007
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BTW, once I get help getting this started, I will take lots of pics and document all the steps so we can have a how-to. My paritcular situation will be different since I'm lowered, but most of the steps will be the same as a stock height or 4x4 Ranger.
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Old 07-01-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by klc317
I need to know about parking brake, ABS, and brake proportioning issues with this swap so I need the experienced modders to help me.
The front/rear proportioning is done in software on 2001+ Rangers (EBFD), so there is no mechanical proportioning valve. I think you're home free on that one. You should also be OK for the base ABS functions. I have a weird combination of Cadillac and Mustang SVO disc parts on the rear of my 2003 and the stock Ranger ABS adapted itself to those perfectly. We also installed the factory Explorer discs on Bill's 2004 LII axle with no ABS/proportioning issues whatsoever.

The parking brake may be a little more troublesome but I think you can come up with something using Explorer cables.

The Explorer brake hose arrangement doesn't work well on stock Rangers because it drops down from the frame rail on the driver side and it isn't long enough. I suspect that this may turn out to be a non-issue on a lowered truck like yours though.
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Old 07-01-2007
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Thanks...I may be able to use some "patching up" ideas and suggestions on the parking brake issue because I want it to be functional, but the brake proportioning issue puts me at ease.I'm glad I can add that to my non-headache column. I'll have to get under there this week and check out the brake hose length and compare mine. When it comes to mods and especially safety issues like brakes, I'm not afraid to spend a few extra dollars to get it right if need be.
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Old 07-02-2007
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I thought explorer axles were spring-under?
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Old 07-02-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gearhead61
I thought explorer axles were spring-under?
They are.
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Old 07-02-2007
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Yeah, thats what I meant to say.
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Old 07-02-2007
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I know you said you contacted Bama Chips, but FYI I changed from 3.73 to a 4.10 over the weekend and my speedo reads 10mph high at 45mph.
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Old 07-02-2007
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Most explorers with any kind of options have 4:10's. My parents have had ten of them over the years and only one I can think of had anything else. THat was the 93. Mine has 4:10's

~HJ
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Old 07-03-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HAZZARDJOHN
Most explorers with any kind of options have 4:10's. My parents have had ten of them over the years and only one I can think of had anything else. THat was the 93. Mine has 4:10's

~HJ
Cool. Guess I'm lucky I found one with 3.73s.
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