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Should I buy this rear axel for my 2003 Ranger Edge?


Lefty

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At long last, I found what could be a good deal on an explorer rear axel. The ad reads.

"Complete rear axle assembly out of a 2000 Ford Explorer-3.73 ratio,Trac-Loc Posi, with rotors and calipers These are getting hard to find…Approximately 59 3/4” from rotor face to rotor face 31 spline axles..."

Questions... Is 59 3/4" gonna work? Will it fit okay

I like my 4/10. Is 3.73 okay?

My current axel is 28 spline. Will 31 spline really matter?

Do I have to weld new tabs on my frame to mount this?

As usual, thanks!
 

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Roert42

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You would have to cut off the mounts on the axel, currently mounted on the bottom, then weld them back on the top.

Nothing is going to get hurt going from 4.10 to 3.73, little less torque. You will be going faster at the same RPM, I think about 9%.
 

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you either have to weld perches for the leaf springs onto the axle, or weld upper spring plates on the truck for coil springs and also weld front mounts for a control arm set up.

splines don;t matter but you do have to remember when you order axles

3.73 is fine but probably not as fast light to light as our 4.10s that we have now
 

ummduh

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I have to ask, what do you hope to gain by swapping?

The explorer AXLE is a great swap, but unless you have specific goals, it's not needed. Just by the tone of your post, it seems you don't exactly need it.
 

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No, I wouldn't swap a 4.10 axle out for a 3.73 axle.
 

Lefty

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I have to ask, what do you hope to gain by swapping?

The explorer AXLE is a great swap, but unless you have specific goals, it's not needed. Just by the tone of your post, it seems you don't exactly need it.
This axel is limited slip, but mine is not.
 

Lefty

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No, I wouldn't swap a 4.10 axle out for a 3.73 axle.
Thank you. This is a concern. So I would gain limited slip, but at the sacrifice of performance.
 

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What is the goal of the axle swap? To gain rear disc brakes?

What kind of driving do you do? What is the terrain like in your area? Do you use your truck to haul or tow a lot?

These are all things you need to ask yourself and compare to how your truck is performing now.

The limited slip differential will certainly be beneficial in the ice and snow.

The number of splines is generally not going to make a difference in Rangers, especially in RWD ones unless you are getting into some kind of racing.

The change in the gear ratio can be pretty significant, depending on a lot of things. Some positive and some negative. If you live in a fairly hilly area, you are going to notice a loss in get up and go from a stop. Especially if you are towing or hauling a load. If the area is pretty flat, you might not notice much a difference and your fuel mileage might improve some. Especially when it comes to highway driving.

As far as the disc brakes, the little gain in braking performance is outweighed in the increased cost to maintain them compared to drum brakes in the salt belt region. I've spent more money, time, and effort maintaining the rear disc brakes on my 2011 (which is based on the Explorer axle rear brake design) than I ever did with a rear drum brake vehicle. The rear brakes are exposed to all the road spray generated from the front wheels, something that drum brakes are less exposed to and rust is less of a problem. This last part is solely based on my experience and opinion and that is going to vary greatly on here I'm sure.

So, if the main goal is just to gain rear disc brakes, I would recommend passing on it. Gaining a limited slip would be nice but if you think you might end up paying to get the axle regeared to 4.10, it might be the same cost or cheaper to just get a limited slip installed in your existing axle after it's all said and done.
 

Roert42

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I have 3.73 in my 2011 2wd. It's fine, drives nice. I took taller tires from a 4wd and ran them on it for a while. It was fine, slight difference, but not anything significant.

I would not worry one bit about the gear change.

Worse case, you hate it enough you want to go back to 4.10, and you have the 4.10 axel to put back it. You could even rebuild it and install a LSD in your old axel, then sell the explorer axel when your done.

I see no downside or danger to swapping this axel. Unless..... you have to pay someone to do all the work...... then you would just be better off paying someone to install a LSD in your existing setup.
 

Lefty

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What is the goal of the axle swap? To gain rear disc brakes?

What kind of driving do you do? What is the terrain like in your area? Do you use your truck to haul or tow a lot?

These are all things you need to ask yourself and compare to how your truck is performing now.

The limited slip differential will certainly be beneficial in the ice and snow.

The number of splines is generally not going to make a difference in Rangers, especially in RWD ones unless you are getting into some kind of racing.

The change in the gear ratio can be pretty significant, depending on a lot of things. Some positive and some negative. If you live in a fairly hilly area, you are going to notice a loss in get up and go from a stop. Especially if you are towing or hauling a load. If the area is pretty flat, you might not notice much a difference and your fuel mileage might improve some. Especially when it comes to highway driving.

As far as the disc brakes, the little gain in braking performance is outweighed in the increased cost to maintain them compared to drum brakes in the salt belt region. I've spent more money, time, and effort maintaining the rear disc brakes on my 2011 (which is based on the Explorer axle rear brake design) than I ever did with a rear drum brake vehicle. The rear brakes are exposed to all the road spray generated from the front wheels, something that drum brakes are less exposed to and rust is less of a problem. This last part is solely based on my experience and opinion and that is going to vary greatly on here I'm sure.

So, if the main goal is just to gain rear disc brakes, I would recommend passing on it. Gaining a limited slip would be nice but if you think you might end up paying to get the axle regeared to 4.10, it might be the same cost or cheaper to just get a limited slip installed in your existing axle after it's all said and done.
Disc brakes do not really matter, but I would really like limited slip, especially up here in Minnesota where we have a lot of snow and ice. This is my second year with the Ranger. It has never gotten stuck. The oversized Cooper all terrain tires are so much better that what I had on my last pickup.

You made a good point though. By the time I go through all of that effort, weld on mounting tabs, rebuild the differential, put in new seals. etc, I might do just as well to have a shop simply install limited slip or a locker.
 

Lefty

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I have 3.73 in my 2011 2wd. It's fine, drives nice. I took taller tires from a 4wd and ran them on it for a while. It was fine, slight difference, but not anything significant.

I would not worry one bit about the gear change.

Worse case, you hate it enough you want to go back to 4.10, and you have the 4.10 axel to put back it. You could even rebuild it and install a LSD in your old axel, then sell the explorer axel when your done.

I see no downside or danger to swapping this axel. Unless..... you have to pay someone to do all the work...... then you would just be better off paying someone to install a LSD in your existing setup.
Good advice. Thanks!
 

ummduh

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Disc brakes do not really matter, but I would really like limited slip, especially up here in Minnesota where we have a lot of snow and ice. This is my second year with the Ranger. It has never gotten stuck. The oversized Cooper all terrain tires are so much better that what I had on my last pickup.

You made a good point though. By the time I go through all of that effort, weld on mounting tabs, rebuild the differential, put in new seals. etc, I might do just as well to have a shop simply install limited slip or a locker.
Going through the hassle of installing the explorer AXLE (not axel) simply to gain LSD isn't really worth it, and the stock ford LSD....lacks.

If you don't have the ability to weld and fab at all, finding a Ranger axle that already has a limited slip diff in your gear ratio would be a completely bolt in affair.

Or, to spend a little more money, have an aftermarket LSD installed in your axle that works better than the marginal Ford diff.
 

Lefty

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Going through the hassle of installing the explorer AXLE (not axel) simply to gain LSD isn't really worth it, and the stock ford LSD....lacks.

If you don't have the ability to weld and fab at all, finding a Ranger axle that already has a limited slip diff in your gear ratio would be a completely bolt in affair.

Or, to spend a little more money, have an aftermarket LSD installed in your axle that works better than the marginal Ford diff.
Makes good sense. Funny. I've scoured the upull yards looking for a deal, only to find highly questionable very rusty and leaky.I never found a decent one. Maybe I just need to bite the bullet and have a reputable shop do the install.
 

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Again, a used clutch type LSD axle has no guarantee of actually functioning as it should. The clutches have a lifespan, they could be worn out... meaning... the carrier needs to come out.


If the chance of the carrier needing to come out is as great as it is.. might as well just buy a brand new LSD carrier and have it installed in your current axle.
 

00t444e

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Thank you. This is a concern. So I would gain limited slip, but at the sacrifice of performance.
The factory Ford limited slip is junk, you would be far better off putting a lunchbox locker in the axle you have now.
 

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