99-01 Coil spring V8 swap


Ranger850

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Born with a 3.0, looking for a donor V8
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idk. just wouldn't want a rookie welder putting suspension parts my frame.:icon_welder:
 


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don4331

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Hmm, that is a really good idea. So what all do you need to remove in order to lift the cab? Is it just the body mounts, or do you need to mess with the steering, brake lines, and other stuff?

I know that there is definitely some modification required to put the explorer axle in the ranger. The shock mounting points are different, and new mounts need to be welded on. I don't know how to weld, but it may be time to learn. What all did you do to modify your explorer axle to fit in the ranger?
4" was more/less limit on lift with only undoing the 6 cab mounts (steering might have been removed, a. to install the tilt column, b. just to have the extra space. :) )

As Ramcharger90 said, using 2 passenger Explorer plates (and some elbow grease/BFH), 2" lift shackles, no welding is required to install the Expo 8.8. I didn't use shims, but then my Ranger has lived a sheltered life.

Did the '96 Expo still have the low pressure fuel? I know there is split in there, and I used a '99 to be sure I had correct set up.
 

TheCitrusMaster

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Since I am doing the tilt steering I will go ahead and lift the cab up. I know getting the mounts off might be a pain, but I am betting that clearance will be worth it. Thanks for that tip

I would much rather keep stock height than lower my ranger, but that being said those lowered rangers do look pretty slick.

According to online, the explorer axle 8.8 has the limited slip and disk brakes, with 31 splines, whereas the ford ranger 4.0 8.8s have open diff, drums and 28 spline. I can see that the 5.0 axle has a lot going for it, but the 4.0 axle would hold up fine behind the 5.0 engine.

If I found a 4.0 axle with the same gear ratio, would that be just as simple as a bolt in swap?
 

Bird76Mojo

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Any 8.8" axle should do fine behind a 302. Not all Rangers had open diffs though. Some came with Trac-Lok limited slip differentials. They'll usually need the limited slip friction discs replaced by the time you get a used axle though. Not a super complicated job, just a pain in the arse.

There's also the FX4 LVLII 8.8" axle with 31 spline shafts and the Torsen limited slip, but those were only available for a few years and are much harder to find. I found mine via a local auto recycler that can get parts from anywhere in the USA, and had it shipped to their facility nearby, all the way from New York. They'll cost you quite a bit more also..

The FX4 LVL II 8.8" axle I installed was also an inch wider per side than my 1987 7.5 axle. Just something to be aware of that might affect your wheel choices in the future.
 

TheCitrusMaster

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I'm liking the idea of using an 8.8 ranger rear end. No welding, no lowering, and I may even get to keep limited slip.

From some quick price checks I am thinking I can get one for about 200 or so. The ranger 8.8 axles do seem pretty common. If I could sell the explorer rear end for 100 it would be worth it.

An FX2 axle would be nice but I would probably run into your same issue of being able to find one, and the price. Those also seem to all be 4.10 and I think most explorers run 3.73 so if I did that I would have issues with the speedometer being incorrect I think.
 

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Well now since I have a lot of the smaller details hammered out I am going to start looking for a donor explorer.

I see a ton of 5.0 Explorers and Mountaineers out there, but about 90% of them are 98s and Awd versions. I see few 99-01 models and much much less 2wd versions.
There is only 1 explorer that fits my needs for sale that I can find right now. It is a 99 2wd, it's 1600$ and has 235k, so I will pass. I have a feeling I'm going to have to be pretty patient to find a donor.
 

Ranger850

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i have the same problem. I have been looking for a cheap donor, but if it runs they want a lot, $1600 is a lot for a donor imo, i see 97 v8 expos with 250k miles and they're asking 3k or more. i have been looking for over a year now for a cheap donor that runs. I'm almost to the point of buying one that doesn't run, and get it running for a swap. frustrating for sure, but I'm a patient person and i will get one eventually.
 

Bird76Mojo

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I looked around on Ebay until I located a Thunderbird 5.0 and the AOD, messaged, emailed, then called the seller. He shot a video of the car for me, showing EVERYTHING I was curious about. Mileage, how the car was wrecked, etc.. I told him all of the parts I required, which were engine, transmission, tranny yoke, tranny crossmember, all radiator hoses, engine fan with all accessories, all engine wiring, computer, and wiring running back to the trunk for the fuel pump relay, etc.. I ended up getting a 92 5.0 with 30,000 miles and an AOD, and everything else I wanted for $1250 shipped to a local Neal tire business near me that had a loading dock. They even unloaded it, and loaded it on to my trailer for me at no charge.

Turns out the OD was burnt out of the transmission, but that's the risk you take sometimes, especially with Ford transmissions.. ;)

So you might look in to that option..
 

Ranger850

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I looked around on Ebay until I located a Thunderbird 5.0 and the AOD, messaged, emailed, then called the seller. He shot a video of the car for me, showing EVERYTHING I was curious about. Mileage, how the car was wrecked, etc.. I told him all of the parts I required, which were engine, transmission, tranny yoke, tranny crossmember, all radiator hoses, engine fan with all accessories, all engine wiring, computer, and wiring running back to the trunk for the fuel pump relay, etc.. I ended up getting a 92 5.0 with 30,000 miles and an AOD, and everything else I wanted for $1250 shipped to a local Neal tire business near me that had a loading dock. They even unloaded it, and loaded it on to my trailer for me at no charge.

Turns out the OD was burnt out of the transmission, but that's the risk you take sometimes, especially with Ford transmissions.. ;)

So you might look in to that option..
This is good info. I assumed you used an Expo/Mounty. Do you have a "build thread" by chance?
 

Bird76Mojo

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Sorry, no build thread, but I do have a complete list of parts that I used, with most part numbers, for people that need help with individual parts selection, etc.
 

TheCitrusMaster

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I went to a car auction a few months ago and they had a running 99 explorer 2wd with 140k and 5.0 that sold for 500$. After titles and fees it would have been about 700. It had a misfire, but I had seen that one of the spark plug wires had been cut or torn or something so that might have been an easy fix. It still ran pretty good considering. I was really thinking about buying it but I hadn't done much research about the swap so I passed. Now I regret that a little.

I have been keeping my eye out on CL and other places for about a month looking for a good explorer, but the options are really pretty limited. I'm not paying more than a grand for a donor consider I have to buy a driveshaft, motor mounts, and the rear axle. I wouldn't mind one with a bad engine or transmission, I would just go to a junkyard and buy one with lower miles or something.

Once I buy it and do the swap, I plan on selling off the parts. Some parts, such as the GEM module and things of that nature go for a lot on eBay. Other parts not so much, but I figure I could make back a good amount selling off the parts and scrap I don't use.
 

TheCitrusMaster

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I looked around on Ebay until I located a Thunderbird 5.0 and the AOD, messaged, emailed, then called the seller. He shot a video of the car for me, showing EVERYTHING I was curious about. Mileage, how the car was wrecked, etc.. I told him all of the parts I required, which were engine, transmission, tranny yoke, tranny crossmember, all radiator hoses, engine fan with all accessories, all engine wiring, computer, and wiring running back to the trunk for the fuel pump relay, etc.. I ended up getting a 92 5.0 with 30,000 miles and an AOD, and everything else I wanted for $1250 shipped to a local Neal tire business near me that had a loading dock. They even unloaded it, and loaded it on to my trailer for me at no charge.

Turns out the OD was burnt out of the transmission, but that's the risk you take sometimes, especially with Ford transmissions.. ;)

So you might look in to that option..
How much did shipping cost? I thought shipping a whole car was really expensive. I might have to look into that...
 

Ramcharger90

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I'm liking the idea of using an 8.8 ranger rear end. No welding, no lowering, and I may even get to keep limited slip.

From some quick price checks I am thinking I can get one for about 200 or so. The ranger 8.8 axles do seem pretty common. If I could sell the explorer rear end for 100 it would be worth it.

An FX2 axle would be nice but I would probably run into your same issue of being able to find one, and the price. Those also seem to all be 4.10 and I think most explorers run 3.73 so if I did that I would have issues with the speedometer being incorrect I think.
The going rate at most of the yards is 150 around me I sold the one from the mountaineer I got after I already bought my 8.8 for 125 to a guy who is going to put it in his rock crawler jeep Cherokee especially if it has disc brakes those guys like them so food for thought
 


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