I think its safe to say that Fox Mustangs never had great brakes. Small rotor size and small caliper piston size left much to be desired. The 4 lug pattern also keeps many Fox Mustang owner drooling over some wheels that they cannot have. I will outline most of the steps and parts needed to upgrade to 5 lug and SN95 disc brakes. Yes, I did say some because I have not completely finished the swap and I still do not have all of the parts to complete the swap. However, these are the major parts of this swap and it has been done many many times before so it is possible. And away we go.
This version of the swap utilizes SN95 spindles. Preferably 94-95 spindles because they retain the stock Fox track width, but 96-98 spindles can also be used even though they do increase track width slightly which may not be a big problem if you are using flared fenders, shorter control arms, or an earlier narrow k-member. I picked these up for about $100 off another forum. They showed up with a little surface rust which cleaned right up in the blast cabinet. Wanting to prevent this from happening again I gave them some rattle can powdercoat in ďcast iron.Ē
You will also be needing SN95 hubs. I picked these up on ebay for about $75 but I wish I had gone to Autozone or Oriely so that I could have gotten lifetime warranty in case of failure. You will also notice the balljoint spacers needed since the Fox balljoints are a bit taller. This can be avoided if you swap in SN95 balljoint into the Fox arms. Spacers ran me $13 from a member on Corral.net.
SN95 calipers and brackets. Got these for $30 on ebay, but later I found out a local junk yard sells them for $10 each. Doh!
SN95 GT/V6 rotors and brake pads. $165 on ebay front and rear.
Start by removing the brake lines from the hard lines.
For the next steps, I would suggest using a floor jack to support and slowly lower the lower control arm as it is supporting the coil spring which is still compressed. I unbolt the strut from the spindle, disconnect the sway bar, and using the jack slowly lower the control arm. You may need to remove the caliper and rotors to access the strut to spindles bolts. I slacked the pictures during these steps.
Remove the castle nut on the balljoint holding the spindle to the lower control arm. Using a hammer or sledge, give the spindle a couple of good whacks around the balljoint and it should drop right out. Put the new spindle onto the balljoint and donít forget the spacer. The hubs go on using the spindle nut which I believe should be torqued to 258 lb-ft according to National Wheel End Components.
Using the jack lift the spindle and control arm into place and bolt the strut to the spindle. At this point you can install the rotor then the caliper brackets. I am still cleaning up the calipers at this point but the rest should be easy.
Compared to before:
More details on finishing up the front to come later.
The parts that will be needed for this method are:
5 lug axles from the following vehicles:
*2 driver side axles from a 83-92 Ford Ranger with either a 3.0L V6 or a 4 cyl, the truck should have a 7.5Ē rear end.
*2 passenger side axles from a 86-97 Ford Aerostar.
*Any combination of these two.
I got mine out of a 92 Ranger and a 90 Ranger at the Mega U-Pull It on Montana for $45 for the pair.
North Racecar SN95 swap brackets. Very high quality pieces for a good price. The kit runs $160 shipped.
SN95 GT or V6 rear rotors and pads which I mentioned earlier.
So to start you need to remove the rear cover on the housing. Be ready with something to catch the oil that will be coming out of this thing.
With the cover out of the way, you can now remove the cross/carrier pin retainer bolt using a 5/16Ē wrench. Keep it somewhere very safe so you donít have to go digging at junk yard for another one.
This will now allow the cross/carrier pin to slide in the carrier. Do not remove it completely. Since we will be removing both axles, removing this pin as well will allow the spider gear assembly to fall apart completely and thatís just extra work putting back together. Instead, I slide it out just enough to be able to slide the axles in and out but still hold one spider gear in place thus keeping the assembly together. I let it rest on the housing to make sure it stays put.
Now you will need to push each axle into the housing further. This will expose the c-clips that hold them in the housing. Using a flat blade screw driver I push them down off the axle and collect them with a magnet or my fingers.
With the c-clip removed the axle should now come out of the housing easily.
Repeat on the other side. This is where you would remove your drum brake backing plates by removing the four nuts holding them in place.
Took some time to clean up the rust on the housing ends and give them a coat of rust reformer. Just because we are using junk yard parts doesnít mean it has to look like crap.
Now before we move on, lets double check our new axles and make sure they are the same length as what just came out. Check!
Install our North Racecars brackets. Now, when dealing with aftermarket parts you have to understand that they will not always be a 100% easy bolt on. You may have to massage the parts or your vehicle to get them to fit nicely. These just needed me to remove a little bit of material from the axles flange where it was causing clearance issues. 5 seconds of grinding can work wonders. You may noticed the brackets are now painted. Bare metal WILL rust, a good thing to remember.
Installing the new axles. Little bit of wheel bearing grease. Then slide the new axle in just as easy as it came out. From here on out it is pretty much what we did to remove them but backwards. Grease the axle a little bit. Guide it into the carrier. Push in as far as it will go.
We reinstall the c-clips. And pull the axle until the c-clip stops it. Do on both sides (thatís what she said!)
Once both axles are in with c-clips, we can slide the cross/carrier pin back into place and reinstall the retainer bolt. Reinstall housing cover using new gasket and fill with specified fluid.
This thing is pretty much ready for brakes now. Rotors, caliper slider brackets, pads, and calipers. Iím am still waiting for calipers so this is as far as I got today.
The rest is minor details. But this is a very easy swap and can be done in a matter of 2-3 hours if you have all the parts you need.
Brakemotive items - Get great deals on items on eBay Stores!
North Racecars Replica and Mustang Parts Connection
Mega U-Pull It on Montana
OíReilly Auto Parts
Quick parts tally:
Front Calipers: $30
Rear Calipers: $20
Front and Rear Rotors and Pads: $165
North Racecar Brackets: $160
Miscellaneous (Paint, etc.): $20
Brake Hoses and other stuff I may still need: $50
Total (Est.) Approx. $680, So say $700.
Keep in mind I ordered alot of new parts. Had I gone with JY rotors and hubs I could have saved a good amount of money. Probably could have gotten the spindles at the junk yard much cheaper. Live and learn.
EDIT: I was forced to delete some picture as I exceeded the number of pictures allowed.