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Huh okay, thanks for the info! Just curious, did you do that to push the axle beams forward a little for tire clearance? Or just so the threads wouldn't bottom out? I'm wondering if the nut is bottoming out on mine now!I took some liberties with that part. It has been a few years and I don't remember if I tried the spacers and they broke. Or if I just didn't trust them. Below, is a picture of what mine looks like right now. No plastic spacer. I did add a metal spacer (looks like a large lock nut, but ID is big, so it's really just a big thick washer) between the arm and the big retaining washer that they provided. Seems to be working OK.
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I did originally, I swapped out the rear axle for a factory 4.10 from an Explorer Sport Trac, and the front axle I swapped in a Dana 28/35 hybrid chunk that was also factory 4.10. That was a few years ago now. Since I'm now re-geared to 4.88's I bought another true Dana 35 chunk to put the gears into so that I now have a Dana 35 again.Wow ............ really nice job there .......... very impressive !!! did you find the front axle with 4:10s you were looking for ???
Was it hard to replace your ebrake cable and pedal? I have a 99 ranger and my ebrake works perfectly fine if I park facing down a hill but for example when I launched my boat it wouldn’t hold if the tailgate was pointing downhill. I adjusted the tightness of the ebrake inside the drum and it still isn’t enough to hold itFinally got my parking brake to work!
I took the pedal assembly back out of the truck, replaced the cable and the switch for the dash light as mine was broken. I forgot to document it at the time, but at one point my e brake pedal broke and the teeth got all chewed up on it so it would just skip to the floor and not work at all. I tried to find a replacement pedal but they're not available new so I searched junkyards, and 95-97 Rangers were scarce around me at the time. I did find one junkyard that had a 93, and I had them pull the pedal for me assuming it would be the same... and it wasn't. Why Ford decided to spend the time/money engineering new parking brake pedals in these trucks so often is beyond me. But anyway, I was able to use the actual foot pedal and ratcheting release mechanism from the 93 pedal on my 97 assembly, with only a few minor modifications needed. I cut all the rivets holding it together to replace the damaged parts, bolted it back together and tack welded the ends as well. I also cut the stopper off that limits the pedal travel so I have a little more travel out of it.
Anyways, after doing some research I found that the front cables are still available to buy from a parts store. The front cables for a 97 are all different lengths based on the wheelbase. According to the measurements, one from an extended cab would probably have been perfect in my case and eliminated the need for the intermediate cable I made. However, the only cable that was readily available was for a regular cab short bed, and it was only about 5-6" shorter than the cable mine originally had. I didn't want to wait about a week to special order one for a long bed or extended cab truck so I just got the short bed one.
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So I installed that back in the truck, and made another slightly longer intermediate cable (good thing I still had leftover cable stops and cable lol). I don't believe my DIY intermediate cable will cause an issue, but if it does at least I know I can probably use an ext cab front cable and eliminate it.
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I went back and adjusted the parking brake shoes one more time - this time in a different way. Before when I adjusted them, I followed the directions in my Chilton's service manual - which was to tighten the adjuster until you can't turn the rotor by hand any more, then back it off 8 clicks. Well, I personally think 8 clicks was too loose because it took a lot of pedal travel to barely get any response from the pedal. What I did instead is adjusted them more like regular drum brakes - tighten them until the rotor can't turn by hand, and then back them off just enough that there's still just very slight interference/drag from the shoes. Now with everything solid - the chevy leaf spring swap bracket no longer flexes under cable tension, all of the cables are new, the shoes are adjusted well, and with my new setup utilizing that Grand Cherokee equalizer bracket - it works well!
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It's hard to picture the incline here, but last time I tested the parking brake in this spot (before bracing that flex-y bracket), it wouldn't hold. But now it held perfect there, the truck was running in neutral in this pic. I even tried letting the clutch out slowly in reverse to see if it could overcome the parking brake easily, but instead it bogged down and didn't budge. Problem solved!
No, it's a pretty simple job at least on my 97. I'm not sure the difficulty on a 99, but I can't imagine it's that much different although I know the pedal assembly is different. Also, I'm not sure replacing the front cable would fix that unless the cable was seized or something like that. Do you have 9" or 10" drums in the back? My old Ranger had 9" drums and I never thought the e-brake held very well, this truck originally had 10" drums and the e-brake back then held insanely strong. It's back to half decent right now with my rear disc setup.Was it hard to replace your ebrake cable and pedal? I have a 99 ranger and my ebrake works perfectly fine if I park facing down a hill but for example when I launched my boat it wouldn’t hold if the tailgate was pointing downhill. I adjusted the tightness of the ebrake inside the drum and it still isn’t enough to hold it
Wow ......... very impressive ........... I have never set up a diff myself, (ring a pinion etc) but I sort of know how its done because Ive watched it done.Huh okay, thanks for the info! Just curious, did you do that to push the axle beams forward a little for tire clearance? Or just so the threads wouldn't bottom out? I'm wondering if the nut is bottoming out on mine now!
I did originally, I swapped out the rear axle for a factory 4.10 from an Explorer Sport Trac, and the front axle I swapped in a Dana 28/35 hybrid chunk that was also factory 4.10. That was a few years ago now. Since I'm now re-geared to 4.88's I bought another true Dana 35 chunk to put the gears into so that I now have a Dana 35 again.
Wow ......... thats crazy ......... You are one seriously talented gentleman ............ super impressive what you have done !!!!!Got a new 4" lift installed the past couple days. I've been wanting to do this for a while. Along with the lift, I also brought the axles to a local shop (thanks @ericbphoto for the recommendation!) to get re-geared to 4.88, and I plan on getting 33" tires soon. I didn't take many pictures during the process, but here was the passenger side completed.
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And I thought I'd share this in case it helps someone. Installing one of these front differentials onto the axle beam by yourself is a bit of a pain in the ass to say the least. Something I thought of when swapping mine out was to get some studs to use as alignment pins. The thread is M10x1.5.
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I was surprised how much grinding was required on the drivers side beam and part of the differential for the skyjacker radius arm to fit.
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And here's the finished (for now) product!
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I definitely need longer brake lines now before I drive it too much, I wasn't sure if a 4" lift would require longer ones or if just a 6" would require it, but they do not have much slack at ride height, so I'll have to address that before I get to really drive this thing.
Huh, I hadn't even thought about just getting rid of them lol... Do you remember how you got them off? I don't really like the idea of taking a cutoff wheel to them that close to the rubber hose. And I agree with you there, especially on the passenger side - it can move quite a lot. The zip ties are just temporary until I find a better solution. This little project took a lot longer than I was planning on and quite a few trips to the parts store so I didn't really feel like making another trip to come up with something better haha.I would take those middle support brackets off that you have zip tied to the spring, you don't want anything extra in that area... I would just zip tie the hose to the coil there, that's how I've had mine for a decade and it's been fine... I would also make a support for the frame end of the hose with that hard line setup, don't want that fatiguing and breaking off...