Explorer 8.8 install with pics - S-10 Forum
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post #1 of 46 Old 03-23-2013, 04:25 PM Thread Starter
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Explorer 8.8 install with pics

Why you ask?

Several reasons; like it's famous 9" big brother, the 8.8 is very tough. Many drag racers run this rear end stock and have no breakage when running in the 9's. For the cost of just a limited slip for a Chevy 10 bolt you get the stronger rear end AND disc brakes!

I picked up a Ford Explorer rear end with limited slip & disc brakes for $250. This rear end will nearly bolt in. This is a better way to go than to put money into the Chevy 10 bolt.
8.8 rear ends came with an ID tag, the one I got is a 3.73 with a locker. The "L" stipulates the locker, if no L, then it would just say 373.
The tag below shows 3L73


Other ratios available were; 3.08, 3.27, 3.31, 3.55, 3.73 & 4.10
If your truck is a 4X4 or AWD you MUST match the your front axle ratio!

S-trucks without a 4.3 are 7.5", and with a 4.3 are 7.6".

The ring gear size went up to 8.5" in 1998 I believe. This is the strongest rear end ever put in an S-truck. You can tell if you have one by the stepped axle tube. 2 limited slips were offered by GM for these trucks. The posi and a Gov-lock. The RPO for the Gov-lock is G80

The Chevy 10 bolt rear end from my 1989 S-15 4X4 Jimmy is a 7.6" with open diff.
Note that 2 wheel drive rear ends are narrower than 4X4 rear ends. If you swapped this 8.8 rear end into your 2wd the wheels would stick out further. If you installing an 8.8 in a 4X4 you do not need to narrow the rear end. Other threads here describe what is required to narrow an 8.8
Note that because the 8.8 axle tube is larger in diameter, your truck will sit 3/8" lower at the rear.

A few measurements;
My Chevy S10 4X4 Blazer
Distance from wheel mounting surface to wheel mounting surface, or drum to drum.
59"
Distance between axle locating pins on the springs.
38 1/2"
173 lbs with disc brakes mounted.
2.65" axle tube diameter.

Ford 8.8
Distance from wheel mounting surface to wheel mounting surface, or drum to drum.
59 1/2"
Distance between axle locating pins on the springs.
39 1/2"
210 lbs with disc brakes mounted.
3.25" axle tube diameter.
10" by 2 1/2" drum/11.25" rotor




What do you need, besides the Ford 8.8 rear end?
* You need the Explorer drive shaft pinion flange & bolts.
* A conversion U-joint, Spicer # 5-793
* 2 - 3/16" metal brake lines, 24" & 36". Or you can use longer if you loop them.
* New U-bolts & nuts.
Dimensions shown are for a stock S-truck with an 8.8 axle. If your truck is using lowering blocks, just add the height of the block to the length of the U-bolts. These are custom made. When they are bent to the diameter that I specify, they spring back and actually measure larger. So I specified a 3" diameter and they sprung out to 3 1/4", perfect fit



* If you are pulling the axles out to re-drill, then 3 liters of 80-90 gear oil & friction modifier if it's a limited slip rear end. And a new lock pin for the spider gear cross-shaft.




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post #2 of 46 Old 03-23-2013, 04:28 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

This next post covers the modifications required to the 8.8 to fit Chevy wheels to it.

If you are using the truck just for racing you may choose to save some money here and run Ford wheels, so you can skip down to the next post. If this is a daily driver you would probably like to only carry one spare tire, read on.

You will need to remove the axle shafts from the axle housing for these modifications. It's not difficult to do.

First remove the diff cover.
With the cover off, rotate the gear assembly until you see a small bolt head at the end of the cross shaft. This bolt locks the cross shaft in place. Use a tight fitting 8mm or 5/16" 6 point socket and long extension. The socket should fit tight and not slip. Do not re-use this bolt, it's not uncommon for them to break. If yours is already broken you will need to use a pick to remove the piece left inside.



With the lock bolt out you can slide the cross shaft out.
You do not need to remove the S-spring to remove the axles.
Now just push the axles in a bit and you can remove the C-clips. This is the same whether open or limited slip diff. Shown below is the limited-slip diff (S-spring).


You can now slide the axles out. Support the outer end to protect the seal. Better yet, replace the seals while the axles are out now.

You are now ready to prepare the axles for the machine shop.

First remove the 8.8 wheel studs by driving them out with a big hammer, they are pressed in.
Check the pilot hole on the wheels you are using, my Corvette rims needed to machined down to 70mm or 2.755" to center the Chevy wheel, your may not.


Be sure to leave the slightly larger shoulder right next to the flange. It's there to locate the drum/rotor. Just machine down the outer section.
The Chevy wheel bolt circle for the S-trucks is 4.75" or 120.7 mm
Re-drill the new holes between the existing wheel stud holes. This must be done with precision! The hole size for the Chevy studs is 31/64 or .484"


With the axles machined, you can now install the Chevy wheel studs. Just place the axle, flange down on 2 supporting blocks and place a stud in a hole. Take a big hammer and drive them in like they were nails. If you already have installed the axle in the housing, you can pull them in using a wheel nut on backwards with washers underneath the wheel nut.

Coat the new seal & the axle bearing surface with gear oil or Lubriplate.
Slide the axle shaft into the housing supporting the wheel flange to protect the seal.
Slide the C-clips into place and pull the axle back to hold the C-clip in place.
Now slide the cross shaft down and install the locking bolt.
Clean the gasket surface of the cover & housing and seal with Permatex Ultra. Do not refill immediately as the gear oil can seep through the uncured sealer and leak later. I like to give it at least an hour to cure, just don't forget.
When refilling for a limited slip unit, use an oil designed for limited slips like Pennzoil Gear Plus. Add the required Ford additive for limited slips first, then top up with gear oil. If you are using Royal Purple synthetic lube, it contains an additive for limited slips already.

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post #3 of 46 Old 03-23-2013, 04:29 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

This particular install is a drum brake limited-slip Ford Explorer 8.8 axle into a 1992 Chevy S10 4X4 Blazer.

Generally a rear axle change is pretty simple; U-bolts, park brake cables, hydraulic brake line, shocks, drive shaft and vent tube. And ABS if equipped. This vehicle has rear ABS but is being removed so I will not concern myself with that.

Removal of the S-truck rear axle, condensed.
- After blocking the rear of the truck up with the wheels removed, remove the brake drums and detach the park brake cable. The cable pops into the backing plate and is retained by 3 prongs. To remove, grab the cable from behind and pull to one side. Take a regular size flat blade screwdriver and press each of the prongs in to release it's grip, twist the cable as you release each prong until it pulls out the back of the backing plate.
- Remove the drive shaft bolts at the rear end and pry the drive shaft out from the yoke with a large screw driver. Place a pan under the tail shaft of the transmission and pull the drive shaft out.
- Remove the vent tube from the axle housing.
- Remove the ABS harness from the body if equipped.
- Remove the metal brake lines from the flex hose junction and remove the fitting from the housing and plug the hose to stop the brake fluid leaking.
- Remove the lower shock nuts and pull the shocks off the studs.
- Now you just have the leaf spring U-bolts left. These are usually rusted and you won't be reusing them. If possible, it's best to simply cut them off. A cut-off wheel or oxy/acetylene torch works best.
- Optionally you can remove the rear leaf spring shackles. This makes it much easier to pull the rear end out and place the new one in postilion. The 8.8 rear end is MUCH heavier than the Chevy 10 bolt, and if you don't have someone strong to help it can be very challenging to slide it out the side over the leaf springs.

Now clean up the top of the leaf spring where the axle rests. An air sander will clean off the rust quickly.

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post #4 of 46 Old 03-23-2013, 04:31 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

Preparing the 8.8 before you put in in position.

- Before placing the 8.8 on the leaf springs, cut off the lower part of the anti-sway bar brackets at the back of the axle, or remove it completely, they will hit the shocks.


- The spring perch locating holes need to be elongated. Some people say they just pull the leaf springs over and the axle will drop down over the pins, but I don't like running the springs with side pressure on the bushings, they should be relaxed with the axle resting over the pins. You will need to elongate the holes to the center of the axle housing by 1/2". I used a high speed die grinder. I STRONGLY suggest using a high quality cutting tip, like a Snap-On. I tried a Home Depot brand and it just didn't cut easily. The Snap-On cut through like the steel was plastic. PLEASE WEAR SAFETY GOGGLES AND GLOVES! The metal coming off is metal shards and will embed themselves in your skin very easily!


This bit has done the 8 spring plate holes & the 2 spring perch holes and still looks brand new!

- The U-bolt holes in the Chevy spring plates will need to be elongated just under 3/8". The holes should be extended outwards at a 45* angle. Use the new U-bolts as a gauge to see when you have gone far enough. This will allow the U-bolts to sit square on the axle tube. Some people have used the Explorer spring plates. This saves elongating the holes but requires welding shock mounts in place.


- The U-joint at the rear of the Chevy drive should be removed and the Explorer flange be installed with the conversion U-joint, #372 from NAPA or the stronger Spicer, # 5793. A large vise works well for this. If the U-joint is the original OEM joint, it will have plastic injected to retain the cups. You must heat the end of the drive shaft to soften the plastic so you can drive out the U-joint cups. An oxy/acetylene torch will do, I'm not sure if a mini-torch will get it hot enough. You don't need it glowing red, you will see the plastic oozing out. Take a punch and drive the cross to each side to remove the cups. When its cooled down, clean out the holes with some sand paper or emery paper. Compare the cup sizes to see which cups fit the Chevy which for the Explorer. A helper would be good here to help balance the drive shaft while you fiddle with the U-joint. You need to work clean and take your time. Place the Chevy cross inside the yoke and gently slide one cup in place.


Place this in the vise to press the cup in. Now open the vise and place the other side in place. Gently slide the cross midway between the cups. Place in the vise and press it in. Now you need to place spacers on each side of the cups to press them in the final amount. Only press until you can get the inside clips on. You may have to push the cross over to one side to seat the cup up to the clip. The cross should easily swivel.
Now you need to attach the Explorer flange to the U-joint. This where your helper is most needed. You need to place the Explorer flange over the cross and place one of the cups in the hole. Again press it in with a vise until flush. Now press in the other side after centering the cross. The Ford side of the U-joint has clips outside the yoke. Only press in far enough to get the clips in. Make sure they are in all the way. You might need a punch and small hammer to tap it in.


If you are unsure about doing this, take it to a drive line shop, it's not expensive.

When installing your drive shaft, you should have about 1-1/2" of free space between the pinion flange & the drive shaft. If it's less and the drive shaft angle to the tail end of the transmission or transfer case is steep, it could bottom in the transmission and damage something. You might need to shorten the drive shaft. This install was a stock height 4X4 and we had about 1-1/4". A lowered truck may have less. Check it before driving it!

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post #5 of 46 Old 03-23-2013, 04:35 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

Now just install the axle in the reverse order.

- If you removed the rear spring shackles you can slide the rear end in from behind. If you didn't you will need to go under the truck with the rear end and then up and over the spring to the right, and then lift the left side over the spring. Remember the axle is very heavy for one person to handle.
The axle should drop over the locating pins on the spring pack. If not, see how much more you need to cut out. If more cutting is needed, roll the axle forward and it will rest on the springs.
- When the axle is sitting on the leaf springs properly, drop the U-bolts in place and slip the spring plates under and snug up the nuts. The U-bolts should be sitting nearly straight up on the tube. Work around all the U-bolt nuts until they are pretty tight. These should be about 80-90 lb/ft, and should be rechecked several times over the next 500 miles, they WILL loosen up!
- DRUM BRAKES: Now mount the Chevy flex hose fitting to a cover bolt near the top left. Attach and tighten your metal brake lines.
- DISC BRAKES: Attach the Explorer flex hose to the S10 bracket, it fits like OEM. You need to use an adapter to fit it to the S10 metal line. Weatherhead ##7828, about $5.

Alternative numbers; It's part #BLF-23C made by AGS. It is a 3/8-24 to 7/16-24 adapter. There is a compatable part # list on the box that lists the following numbers Edelmann #258430, Weatherhead #7828 , and Continental #WLA828.




- Install the shocks.
- Install the drive shaft. If your truck has been raised or lowered you need to check to see if the slip yoke in the transmission is OK. If the truck has been raised it might pull out of the trans, you need about an 1 & 1/2 inside the trans. If lowered it might bottom out on the output shaft of the trans. If the truck is lowered, you should place the supporting stands under the axle tubes to compress the springs to gauge whether the drive shaft needs to be shortened. If you can't slide the drive shaft forward to clear the large nut on the pinion flange, it's too short. You will need to have a drive line shop modify it. The drive shaft is off-set to the right with the 8.8, you need to check the clearance to the muffler. This one clears by about 1/2". I was able to loosen the pipe clamps and get over an inch.


- Attach your vent tube to the axle. If you haven't raised your truck too much the hose will be too long and you will need to trim it, just leave some slack for it to move about a bit.
- Remove your brake drums and the brake components and attach the Chevy park brake cable, it just slides in and connects like OEM. It will be a bit loose in the backing plate but will work fine. Reinstall your brake parts and brake drum. Adjust your brakes & park brake.
Make sure your rear end is filled with the proper lube.
- Bleed your brakes and put your wheels on, you are ready to roll

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post #6 of 46 Old 03-23-2013, 04:42 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

Drilling the 8.8 axles for your S10, redneck style

I've searched the 8.8 threads and not found any information to re-drill the axles for Chevy wheels other than to have a machine shop do it.

Being the resourceful (cheap) person that I am I gave some thought as to how I could best do this myself with limited machine shop tools. I currently have 2 Ford 8.8 swaps to do and if I can save some money, or at least learn something I'm ahead of the game. Now if you are doing just one pair of axles I would suggest calling around the machine shops or the custom rear end shops for a price.

I would think that most of us if we had the choice would opt for using Chevy wheels on our trucks. Of course, if it's a track only and not a DD then you can save you money on modifying the axles for Chevy wheels.

First step
To fit Chevy wheels to the 8.8 axles, 2 modifications need to be done. First the 8.8 wheel pilot is too big for the Chevy wheel to fit. I haven't got a cheap DIY for this, I had a local machine shop do this.
The 8.8 hub pilot is stepped; next to the wheel bolt flange is the pilot for the drum/rotor. This you need to leave as is, do not touch it!
The outer step must be machined to 70mm or2.755", the Chevy wheel pilot size.


Once this is done, the Chevy wheel bolt pattern must be drilled in between the Ford stud holes.

To do this I used an old alloy Blazer wheel and cut the center out of it. I began with a cut-off wheel but quickly changed over to a Sawzall.




I dropped off the wheel center at the machine shop with instructions to mill out the wheel bolts holes, preserving the indexing, and machine up an insert that I can move to each hole to drill it. These holes MUST be square to the wheel center!
This is what I got.


I drilled 3 mounting holes between the Chevy holes to secure it to the 8.8 flange while I drilled the new Chevy wheel bolt holes. The milled out Chevy bolt hole size isn't important, just had them make the insert a snug fit. I put a handle on it so I can remove it without resorting to Vise-grips. The hole in the center of the insert is 31/64 or .484". This is the size of hole needed in the flange to fit the Chevy wheel studs.

Second step
With that all done I mounted the jig to the 8.8 flange. It's not critical that the Chevy holes you drill are EXACTLY between the Ford holes.


I began with a DeWalt Pilot Point drill thinking I could do the drilling in one pass. It worked real slick for the first 3 holes, the 4th hole was a struggle as the pilot point was done! I had to drill a pilot hole free hand to get the drill through.


I finished that axle by marking the flange with the DeWalt bit first to locate a pilot hole location.


For the second axle I picked up a Jet "Gold" brand drill bit. I've not had or heard good stuff about Jet brand tools but I needed to get this done. I just marked the flange with the Jet bit and drilled the pilot holes free hand, followed by the 31/64 Jet bit. The job went fine with this bit.

A tip here; I would suggest new high quality bits for this. These flanges are tough stuff, and use lots off cutting oil and drill in steps cleaning & flushing the chips out as you go.

So now the axles are done, but we need to re-drill the rotors/drums.

The drums have a lip that centers the drum on the hub pilot, the one you DIDN'T machine down. You must place 3 large same size washers to space it above the lip or you will distort the drum when you tighten the axle down. This is not necessary for a brake rotor, so just mount the axle directly to the rotor. Again, it's not critical that the holes are located exactly between the original wheel bolt holes.


Now use the 31/64 drill to mark the location on the drum/rotor. I chose not to run the drill all the way through because I didn't want any excess wear on the insert, and it's not a critical operation anyways.


Almost done now.
Remove the axle form the drum/rotor and drill a pilot hole, about 3/16" will do.
Follow this with a 17/32 or 5/8 drill. It's OK that the holes are a bit big, the drum/rotors are sandwiched between the axle flange and the wheel, it won't move when the wheels are tightened.


Now, place the axle face down on a hard supporting surface, like these heavy press plates, or you can use a big vise. Drive those studs in just like nails!
Make sure they are down all the way. Re-check your wheel nuts after driving a few miles to make sure they haven't loosened up.


On with the drum,


The critical measurements you need to know, whether you do this yourself or send it out for machining is;
the OUTER hub pilot must be reduced to 2.755" or 70mm
The Chevy wheel bolt pattern for our trucks is 5 by 4.75" circle.
And the hole to drill for the wheel studs is 31/64" or .484


I used Raybestos wheel studs P/N 2093B. These will protrude 31.78mm or 1.250 inches. These should be long enough for the thicker disc rotor and an alloy wheel.

EDIT: I might add, my FIRST choice was a nice thick Chevy wheel spacer, but I'd had no cheap source so I went with what I had. The nice thing is that the insert is easily made by a shop when it wheres from use.

I paid the machine shop $140 to turn down the pilot hubs on 2 axles and mill the holes in the wheel center and make the insert for me. I didn't inquire as to how much they would charge for doing the index drilling and turning the pilot hubs. I also haven't inquired at the local custom rear end shop. Maybe it would have cost me less, and certainly less work, just drop the axles off and pick them up when ready, but where's the fun in that!

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post #7 of 46 Old 03-23-2013, 11:38 PM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

WOW. awesome man.
Ill be using this for sure!


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post #8 of 46 Old 03-24-2013, 01:18 AM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

Great write up, I am in the market for an explorer rear end. couple questions,

I'm in the same boat running corvette wheels so I will have to have the wheel pilot turned down. What did the machine charge you to do that?

I also will swap my corvette brakes over. Do you know the Diameter of the axle face, that has the wheels studs? Running c-clips is a pain unless you have the axle stud flange diameter turned down to clear the parking brake shoe. On my 7.5 axle right now I pushed the axles in and installed the c-clips which means ill curse a lot when I remove the c-clips again.

It looks tight but from the side it has clearance from the brake shoe, see why the diameter needs to be turned down.

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post #9 of 46 Old 03-24-2013, 01:27 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

The machine shop charged me $140 to turn down the hubs and make the axle drilling jig. Turning down the hubs is a piece of cake, just simple lathe work. I can't see it costing more than $50

I don't know the diameter of the axle flange face.

I have no problems with C-clip axles, just pull the cover and the lock pin and out the axles come.

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post #10 of 46 Old 03-26-2013, 02:14 AM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

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Originally Posted by AWD V8 View Post
The machine shop charged me $140 to turn down the hubs and make the axle drilling jig. Turning down the hubs is a piece of cake, just simple lathe work. I can't see it costing more than $50

I don't know the diameter of the axle flange face.

I have no problems with C-clip axles, just pull the cover and the lock pin and out the axles come.
good info, my local parts yard has them $250 for a disc brake and $200 for drum. They looked good, no rust so ill pick one up in a few days I'll stay with drums since I am using my vette brakes.

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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

The drum brake 8.8's are good, don't under estimate a large drum brake. The increased braking improves the balance and feel.

The S10 drum brake cable slips right into place in the 8.8 like OEM.
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post #12 of 46 Old 03-29-2013, 08:44 AM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

This is an EXCELLENT write up, then again considering the source I would not expect anything less this should be a STICKY for quick reference for those that want this conversion done......

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post #13 of 46 Old 03-29-2013, 10:39 AM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

I used this write up a couple years ago when I did mine, thanks for taking to time to put this together then and for reposting it here for others.

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post #14 of 46 Old 03-29-2013, 11:12 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

Thanks guys

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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

Quote:
Originally Posted by moon509 View Post
Great write up, I am in the market for an explorer rear end. couple questions,

I'm in the same boat running corvette wheels so I will have to have the wheel pilot turned down. What did the machine charge you to do that?

I also will swap my corvette brakes over. Do you know the Diameter of the axle face, that has the wheels studs? Running c-clips is a pain unless you have the axle stud flange diameter turned down to clear the parking brake shoe. On my 7.5 axle right now I pushed the axles in and installed the c-clips which means ill curse a lot when I remove the c-clips again.

It looks tight but from the side it has clearance from the brake shoe, see why the diameter needs to be turned down.
The Ford rears don't suffer from that design fault. Is very simple to get the axles out of them. Also I would stick with the Ford discs over the vette brakes.

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post #16 of 46 Old 03-31-2013, 06:42 PM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

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Originally Posted by ppi12x4 View Post
The Ford rears don't suffer from that design fault. Is very simple to get the axles out of them.
you make a statment but that says nothing, the c-clips have to be removed to get the axles out. Corvettes use hub bearings so there are no clips to remove. Stock disc brakes have the parking brake assembly pushed back to gain access, so I really dont see what your saying.

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post #17 of 46 Old 03-31-2013, 06:48 PM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

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you make a statment but that says nothing, the c-clips have to be removed to get the axles out. Corvettes use hub bearings so there are no clips to remove. Stock disc brakes have the parking brake assembly pushed back to gain access, so I really dont see what your saying.
Basically function over form. Bling (Corvette rear brakes on a truck) are only good for car shows but its your truck.


They have c-clip eliminators available that will help with your problem. Either way you will probably be forging a new path for that swap

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post #18 of 46 Old 03-31-2013, 07:02 PM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

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Basically function over form. Bling (Corvette rear brakes on a truck) are only good for car shows but its your truck.


They have c-clip eliminators available that will help with your problem. Either way you will probably be forging a new path for that swap
true, they are purty! Acehaag designed the rear kit for 1st gen syty's so it was swapped to a 2nd gen. That's why he said to turn down the outer diameter of the stud flange and they will slip in and out easily. I always wanted the c-clip eliminators and people are using them for street use but I hear you can have leak issues and they are not recommended for street use. More so hear it on the gm 8.5 rears. Its kind of a turning point which way to go. Either way its money. 8.8 4-link coilovers or sometype of IRS the vette c4 works well.

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post #19 of 46 Old 07-15-2013, 12:36 AM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

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This is an EXCELLENT write up, then again considering the source I would not expect anything less this should be a STICKY for quick reference for those that want this conversion done......
I agree very nicely done
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post #20 of 46 Old 07-21-2013, 11:04 AM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

One of these will help out alot with drilling for the new bolt pattern.




http://m.summitracing.com/parts/mfy-...Fcvm7AodKBUALQ
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

This install shows that the 8.8 explorer rear end isn't "Bolt-in" (if you want it done properly) like everybody here makes it out to be.

Awesome write-up and pics! Unlike many of the other threads, these pics are pretty good (and not broken links.)
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post #22 of 46 Old 07-23-2013, 02:06 AM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

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Originally Posted by rupintart View Post
This install shows that the 8.8 explorer rear end isn't "Bolt-in" (if you want it done properly) like everybody here makes it out to be.

Awesome write-up and pics! Unlike many of the other threads, these pics are pretty good (and not broken links.)
So it requires 30-45 minutes of additional work. Big deal.


You can't use the bolt pattern against the bolt in idea. Use Ford wheels.

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post #23 of 46 Old 09-06-2013, 11:20 PM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

So unless i missed it, is it a problem for the driveshaft to be off centered?
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post #24 of 46 Old 09-07-2013, 12:30 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

No it is not. I've run mine, 2dr Jimmy, WITH a transfer case, so the drive shaft is real short, 4 years, no problems.

It's no worse than having the truck jacked up or lowered. The drive shaft can angle up or down, or side to side. Many 4wd have offset drive shafts.

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post #25 of 46 Old 09-10-2013, 04:23 AM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

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No it is not. I've run mine, 2dr Jimmy, WITH a transfer case, so the drive shaft is real short, 4 years, no problems.

It's no worse than having the truck jacked up or lowered. The drive shaft can angle up or down, or side to side. Many 4wd have offset drive shafts.
Thats what I wanted to hear!

Only other info I cant find on the web, is there a 3.42 gear set available for the 8.8? Ive already got a 3.42 in the front. I really dont have it in my budget to swap the fronts.

Thanks for your help man!!!
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post #26 of 46 Old 09-10-2013, 09:58 AM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

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Thats what I wanted to hear!

Only other info I cant find on the web, is there a 3.42 gear set available for the 8.8? Ive already got a 3.42 in the front. I really dont have it in my budget to swap the fronts.

Thanks for your help man!!!
You are out of luck, FORD has
2.76
3.08
3.27
3.55
3.73
4.10
4.30
4.56
Etc......
If it was me i would instal the 8.8 w/3.73s then disconnect the front shaft, i believe that can be done and wait for the 3.73 money for the front
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post #27 of 46 Old 09-10-2013, 07:31 PM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

Subscribed, for later reference.

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15/16 of the world prefers the metric system.
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post #28 of 46 Old 09-10-2013, 07:33 PM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

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Originally Posted by Gen210 View Post
You are out of luck, FORD has
2.76
3.08
3.27
3.55
3.73
4.10
4.30
4.56
Etc......
If it was me i would instal the 8.8 w/3.73s then disconnect the front shaft, i believe that can be done and wait for the 3.73 money for the front
there may be a 3.42 in the aftermarket. ford also has a 3.31 8.8

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mr2 turbo
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post #29 of 46 Old 09-11-2013, 06:16 PM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

finally got my axles dropped at the machine shop, under $100 to redrill the studs, install new studs, turn down the axle pilot hub and turn down the stud flange. The out flange needs to be 5.9" or less in diameter to clear the parking brake shoes for vette brake swap. Next will be to refit the vette brakes to the new housing.

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1998 Pontiac Firebird Formula, engine from the Jimmy and a built t56
2006 Trailblazer SS
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post #30 of 46 Old 12-08-2014, 07:43 PM
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What year explorer 8.8 would be the best candidate for this swap? Also any idea where I can find out what rear gear I have in my truck now? 2000 extreme 4.3, 4L60E.
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post #31 of 46 Old 12-09-2014, 12:24 AM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

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What year explorer 8.8 would be the best candidate for this swap? Also any idea where I can find out what rear gear I have in my truck now? 2000 extreme 4.3, 4L60E.
I like the '96 up Explorer 8.8 simply due to the disc brakes, you can't go wrong with it.... Most likely your blazer has 3.42 gears in it. I have always found it best to pull the cover off drain the fluid since it most likely needs to be changed and look on the ring gear you will see a pair of numbers like 41-10 for example. If you look in your glove box the RPO sticker is in there you will see
GU4=3.08
GU5=3.23
GU6=3.42
GT4=3.73
GT5=4.10
HC4=4.56

G80 - locking differential

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post #32 of 46 Old 03-02-2015, 05:29 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

Park brake cable update:

Installing a disc brake 8.8 into a disc brake S10, you DO NOT need the cable adapters I've been referring to.

You can grind down the 8.8 brake lever and the cable will install like OEM.

You must remove the axles to be able to remove the park brake levers.

Once you have removed the leavers just grind them for clearance you you see in the pic below.





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post #33 of 46 Old 03-04-2015, 07:53 AM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

Nice write up I plan to do this.
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post #34 of 46 Old 03-12-2015, 08:02 AM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

Here's a tool to help with drilling the flange. http://www.newstalgiawheel.com/shop/...onversion-tool
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post #35 of 46 Old 03-12-2015, 08:45 AM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

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Here's a tool to help with drilling the flange. http://www.newstalgiawheel.com/shop/...onversion-tool
damn $100, My machine shop drilled and installed my studs. Then did all the machine work to the hat for $80.00

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1998 Pontiac Firebird Formula, engine from the Jimmy and a built t56
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post #36 of 46 Old 03-12-2015, 03:55 PM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

80 dollars seems like a good price. I live in an area where most of the machine shops provide service for the petrochemical industry, machining rates must be higher where I live.
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post #37 of 46 Old 03-12-2015, 09:35 PM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

Nice swap!!

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My build thread... https://www.s10forum.com/forum/f30/pr...ecs-ss-513887/
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post #38 of 46 Old 06-02-2016, 12:12 PM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

Bringing up a old thread but just wondering has anyone done this with a different pinion flange or stock s10 one? The driveshaft was taken out of the explorer i got my rear end from and they must've taken it too. Or anyone know where to order one? No parts stores in my town can find me one. Paid $40 and a case of beer for my rearend so now I can spend on new brake lines etc. Thanks guys

Jacob

Got a truck almost a decade older than me and I'm probably in worse shape! Ill update this when it starts to look good
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post #39 of 46 Old 06-02-2016, 12:15 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

I bought my 8.8 without an Explorer drive shaft. Search the internet for "drive shaft repair (your town)"

It cost me $110 to get my S10 driveshaft shortened, balanced and a new Explorer flange & U-joint.
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post #40 of 46 Old 06-02-2016, 01:37 PM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

I would think that any F150 drive shaft would have the same flange on it. You don't want to get into changing the flange on the rear end unless you know what you are doing. You take the chance of messing up the pinion bearing preload when you do this.

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post #41 of 46 Old 04-08-2019, 11:10 PM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

thanks for this write up. Im just found a 3L73 disc brake rear this weekend, half price sale at Pick and pull for $96 ! Im trying to fit it into a 86 S-10 Blazer 2wd with 2010 Camaro SS rims and airbags so measurements will be tight and rough!

04 EC Silverado 4.8L,Pioneer, Rockford Fosgate, K&N, Viper, ACT, USSpeedo, Matrix, Whelen, Blackbear, 22" Eagles, Nittos,Russel,Magnaflow
85 S-15 2.5L/4spd, RF T4004, sub & highs, SD 4-link, AIM LCAs, 1/2 valves & compressor, Blazer interior, 17" Eagles w/BFGs, Tailgate skin, phantom grill, 140 amp alt
Project thread:
https://www.s10forum.com/forum/f30/pr...ymbagd-464481/
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post #42 of 46 Old 04-08-2019, 11:19 PM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

heres what I got
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04 EC Silverado 4.8L,Pioneer, Rockford Fosgate, K&N, Viper, ACT, USSpeedo, Matrix, Whelen, Blackbear, 22" Eagles, Nittos,Russel,Magnaflow
85 S-15 2.5L/4spd, RF T4004, sub & highs, SD 4-link, AIM LCAs, 1/2 valves & compressor, Blazer interior, 17" Eagles w/BFGs, Tailgate skin, phantom grill, 140 amp alt
Project thread:
https://www.s10forum.com/forum/f30/pr...ymbagd-464481/
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post #43 of 46 Old 04-08-2019, 11:46 PM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

Great write up. I bolted in a completely unmodified 8.8 in mine.
No narrowing, no spring perch mods, no redrilling. Since most of the wheel combos I was looking at require spacers in the front I went ahead & made spacer adapters & used Mustang wheels. The backspacing is perfect on the rear axle & matches with 2.3" spacers in the front. The Ford logo gets a few double takes.


2001 S10 Extended Cab
LQ9, T56, Explorer 3.73, Camaro Disc, Hydroboost
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post #44 of 46 Old 04-09-2019, 12:43 AM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

traitor, oh wait, nm

04 EC Silverado 4.8L,Pioneer, Rockford Fosgate, K&N, Viper, ACT, USSpeedo, Matrix, Whelen, Blackbear, 22" Eagles, Nittos,Russel,Magnaflow
85 S-15 2.5L/4spd, RF T4004, sub & highs, SD 4-link, AIM LCAs, 1/2 valves & compressor, Blazer interior, 17" Eagles w/BFGs, Tailgate skin, phantom grill, 140 amp alt
Project thread:
https://www.s10forum.com/forum/f30/pr...ymbagd-464481/
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post #45 of 46 Old 04-09-2019, 12:02 PM
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Re: Explorer 8.8 install with pics

The Ford 8.8" Flange is a 3.5" bolt circle, most commonly used with a 1330 flange yoke.

The easiest method is to use a Ford 1330 3.5" BCD flange yoke, with a 1330 to 3R adapter universal.

You can swap the pinion flange on an 8.8" without worrying about pinion preload. The pinion is initially torqued to 130lbs, with 140lbs final torque. The sleeve won't crush anymore than it already has. FWIW it's easy enough to validate with an inch-lb torque wrench to ensure preload didn't change before/after. Should be in the range of 8- to 14 in/lbs for a used bearing.

The biggest pita torqueing it down... I use a long 3/4"x3/4" square tube with two holes made just for the purpose (and a few other uses) that allows it to be bolted to the flange.
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post #46 of 46 Old 05-26-2019, 07:48 PM
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What do you do about axle shafts once you narrow it?
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