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Swap Dana 28 E4wd to 2001 Ranger Edge 4X4


Blown

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I thought I would start a thread here, will help me organize and it might help someone else. I am going to try and swap-in a Ford Aerostar Dana 28 Tranfer Case. I want AWD, do not need 4lo, and should still have the ability to lock the transfer case for really slippery or deeper stuff. My thought is better handling and no rear wheel spin.

The 1997 Ford Aerostar got a new 5-speed automatic transmission for '97 (the 5r55e). The 5-speed came only with the 4.0-liter engine, which was standard on E-4WD Aerostars. My rig has the 5r55e so it should bolt-up.

Aerostar E4WD system (my summary and cut n paste from http://www.ford-trucks.com/forums/460401-aerostar-transfer-case.html:
"Aero's have a system that is not designed to run with the transaxle clutch in lockup all the time. The electronic four-wheel drive vehicle has engine torque available to all the wheels on a full-time basis (All Wheel Drive). One third of the torque is sent to the front axle. Two thirds of the torque is sent to the rear axle. This torque split favoring the rear axle allows the vehicle to handle in the manner of a rear wheel drive vehicle but with the response of a front wheel drive vehicle. AWD is made possible by use of a planetary gear differential. For 4wd a control module senses wheel slip and locks up the interaxle differential as necessary via an electromagnetic clutch. The control unit senses when a wheel is slipping and activates the electric clutch assembly in the transfer case. The electric clutch consists of an actuator coil, an armature and clutch pressure plates. When the clutch pressure plates are compressed, the front and rear wheels rotate at the same speed and the front planet does not operate giving a 50/50 split to the front and rear axles.
Regarding the clutch engagement duration, the word I have from the Aerostar's former AWD system engineer is that engaging it manually with a switch would actually be a little easier on the clutch, since it had a fair amount of torque capacity and that leaving it engaged (in foul conditions and such) would potentially extend the life of the clutch because it would eliminate the continuous slippage from repeated engaging/disengaging that you might encounter on a bad road...The auto system would engage for 3 seconds, disengage, then reengage if it sensed slippage I think under 5mph. The on, off, on, off must have made for a weird jerky ride when it got traction."
 
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Blown

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I am sure I can wire the Transfer case to power and switch to ground which will take the place of the control box. I will likely also have to do some driveshaft work but won't know till I get the T-case.

I found this: "It was actually somewhat a head its time. From what I was told by the Aerostar's AWD system chief engineer (who we now work with on new projects at Ford), the clutch was fairly beefy and had good torque capacity. I think the only problems with the AWD system as a whole are the dated electronics..."

I ordered a new Dana 28 for $160 shipped on ebay! Over twice that price for a used unit. My guess is these are not that much in demand or someone got a great deal on a bunch of old parts. I will update here when I get it and see what I need to swap it in. I did most of my research on Serious X and here, thanks to those who posted stuff.
 
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The Dana 28 uses slip yokes at both outputs. I think I will get a set of driveshafts for an Aerostar to get those slip yokes. Then I can build a couple of good shafts between the stock ranger and Aerostar shafts.
 

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I'm following this as I had the same idea, but couldn't find a t-case in my price range. My research tells me u-joint style ends are better, less wear on bearings. If possible change to u-joint style ends.
 

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I'm following this as I had the same idea, but couldn't find a t-case in my price range. My research tells me u-joint style ends are better, less wear on bearings. If possible change to u-joint style ends.
I know the Jeeper crowd utilizes a slip yoke eliminator kit. It must be doable, but at what cost? I haven't checked into it. I have worked with a good drive shaft shop in town, will call them today.

I am hoping the driveshafts need to be shortened a bit vs lengthening. It is cheaper to shorten Vs adding a new tube to get the length you need.

As a side note, I found Mustang guys utilizing the Aerostar aluminium shaft which is the same length as the Stang shaft.

The T-case should be here on the 13th! Damn nice to get delivery too my home at the price, instead of a pic-n-pull wrecking yard run!
 

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Dana 28 Pics, you can see the sensors on each output (which I won't use) and the wiring for the clutch.





Aerostar front drive shaft with slip joint, the rear is the same but longer of course.

 

bigblock501

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fast AWD

Finally, someone that doesn't want to lift their truck, and run huge tires locked in 4lo. I'm looking to do the same thing as you, except I'm going to be running a big block 501 stroker and C-6. I want to run road rallies dirt courses, road courses, drag race, and maybe even the Pikes Peak hill clime. Won't need 4 low, plenty of torque. I want AWD, not 4WD. I need it low, wide, and fast. Not sure this transfer case can handle my torque though, 600+ lbft. How did you widen yours 3"? I may have to go with a tc that will bolt up to C-6, but exploring all options. Don't care about mud and rock crawling, just want to go really fast on all road conditions. Any help is appreciated. Thanks
 

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Finally, someone that doesn't want to lift their truck, and run huge tires locked in 4lo. I'm looking to do the same thing as you, except I'm going to be running a big block 501 stroker and C-6. I want to run road rallies dirt courses, road courses, drag race, and maybe even the Pikes Peak hill clime. Won't need 4 low, plenty of torque. I want AWD, not 4WD. I need it low, wide, and fast. Not sure this transfer case can handle my torque though, 600+ lbft. How did you widen yours 3"? I may have to go with a tc that will bolt up to C-6, but exploring all options. Don't care about mud and rock crawling, just want to go really fast on all road conditions. Any help is appreciated. Thanks


:icon_confused:

what?



big motor and a c6 for a awd thrasher....yeah...

4404 bud....

they have had that covered for 20 years now....


they are all over in piles because nobody wants them.. sorry you missed that. most guys shit can those for actual 4x4 cases on swaps. the d28 case is not for you.

with a 504, i caan see using a np 203.

theres a series of jeep and rover caes and etc..
 

alwaysFlOoReD

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bobbywalter

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Blown

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Finally, someone that doesn't want to lift their truck, and run huge tires locked in 4lo. I'm looking to do the same thing as you, except I'm going to be running a big block 501 stroker and C-6. I want to run road rallies dirt courses, road courses, drag race, and maybe even the Pikes Peak hill clime. Won't need 4 low, plenty of torque. I want AWD, not 4WD. I need it low, wide, and fast. Not sure this transfer case can handle my torque though, 600+ lbft. How did you widen yours 3"? I may have to go with a tc that will bolt up to C-6, but exploring all options. Don't care about mud and rock crawling, just want to go really fast on all road conditions. Any help is appreciated. Thanks
Wow, :icon_surprised: my desire but pumped-up on steroids. I am not looking for controversy and was one of those low and slow rock crawler guys. I ran a 393 stroker with 9lbs of boost, but that was with a 205/Atlas II doubler transfer case with 609 front axle and Sterling rear axle, basically, one ton running gear, including drive shafts in a full size Bronco. The 4404 may hold-up to what you are considering, found in V8 Explorers, but what about the rest of your running gear and the frame will need to be strengthened? Don't answer here please, please don't hijack this thread. While you have similar ideas you will be on a different track to tame all that power. Start a build thread, sounds very interesting.

I put 1.5" wheel spacer on my rig to widen it a bit and keep the stock wheels. An aftermarket wheel with more backspace would do the same.
 
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Blown

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I got the T-case. It looks like it will fit. It is longer due to the slip shaft configuration. It looks like the front output extends far enough to allow the driveshaft to clear the cross member. I can't wait to bolt it up and get measurements for driveshafts.
I am trying to get out to the local pick n pull to get the Aerostar drive shafts or slip yokes today or tomorrow. The front output is unique in that it takes a 14 spline male shafted slip yoke. The rear is a pretty standard 28 spline, sleeve type slip yoke.

I got to check existing wiring down there, seems to me that I could wire-in the 4X4 dash switch with power and ground already down to the T-case.
 

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I don't know much about transfer cases but here's a link I saved that has a lot of info for transmissions and transfer cases;
http://www.rsgear.com/technical.aspx
I found them in my searches, good tech., downloaded Dana 28 stuff.

I also found this and forgot where. I started a Word Doc for this swap. Credit here but too who? This info got me pumped to do this since it confirmed what I was thinking of doing. Here:

"Regarding the clutch engagement duration, the word I have from the Aerostar's former AWD system engineer is that engaging it manually with a switch would actually be a little easier on the clutch, since it had a fair amount of torque capacity and that leaving it engaged (in foul conditions and such) would potentially extend the life of the clutch because it would eliminate the continuous slippage from repeated engaging/disengaging that you might encounter on a bad road...
"
 
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bigblock501

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Thanks guys, I have a '96 explorer but unfortunately it has a 4405 true trac. I'll look for a 4404. 4405 looks complicated and not sure it would handle the torque. I know the stock 1354 isn't up to the task. Guess we'll see how this one plays out.
 

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My son and I muscled the old case out and new one in. There are no clearance issues.



Rear


Front


I grabbed Aerostar AWD driveshafts at the picknpull. I slipped them on, took measurements, and was able to get them to my driveshaft shop. I'll get a few more pics and my impressions of how it works when I get the shafts back this week.
 
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