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Discussion Starter #1
My head is swimming with all of the possible options for converting my '90 GT to 5 lug/4 wheel disc. To add to my confusion, I got a tip from the guy at North Cobras. He said to get a rear end assembly from a '87 or '88 T-bird Turbo Coupe and do the rear disc conversion on the rear end before installing it in the car. The advantages to this are the short downtime for the conversion and 3.55 or 3.73 gears with traction lock (depending on whether the donor chicken was manual or automatic). A little checking and I have found that these rear ends are very much available (assuming one is willing to drive up to 150 miles to a junk yard to get one) and relatively cheap ($100 to $500). I have found one in the town I grew up in for $250 and is still in the car, so I can get it complete rotor to rotor. The donor car has 135,000 miles on it and I have no real idea what shape the rear end is in. But my GT has 115,000 and I think the traction lock is worn out on it

So here is my question: Are Ford 8.8 inch carriers rebuildable? I admit to knowing next to nothing about rear ends (except the ones on good looking babes), but I have a friend who says I need to find out if the carrier is the clutch-type (rebuildable) or cone-type (not rebuildable).

I think this tip is a great idea, but is really not worth it if I have to replace the carrier in the new rear end.

Are there any other things I need to worry about with a salvage yard rear end? If the thing can be rebuilt, what should I expect to pay for labor to do such a thing?

Any advice on this matter is appreciated.
 

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The 8.8 uses clutch discs and is rebuildable. You can get a re-build kit through Ford Motorsport (M-4700-B) for about $40. There is a great article somewhere in the tech section by Chris Neighbors on a rear end re-build - everything you need is in it!
 

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LOL! Or if you want an updated version, I have that too, LOL!

CPA5.0 has a good set of artilces on-line too...w/pictures!

Chris
 

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Jrgoffin is right about the clutch type carrier. Ford only used the cone type for a short time and was normally just in the 7.5" rears. If you want a few facts about 8.8" go to my web page http://pages.prodigy.net/kennethl6/ and if anyone is interested I've produced a video on rebuilding the 8.8" rear end which I sell on eBay from time to time.
 

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The Turbo coupe rearend already has a traction lok in it. It may be in good condition, but if you want to be on the safe side, you can rebuild it (replace clutches) yourself without removing the carrier from the rearend. You're going to need a different E-brake cable setup. You might also want to get the caliper brackets that North Cobras sells so that you can use the shorter Fox Mustang axles in the Turbo Coupe rearend and be able to keep your current wheels.
BTW Ford never used a cone type carrier (from the factory) in any 8.8.
 

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When I did my Turbo-Coupe brake swap, I found that the gears and the 8.8 were in excellent shape. This seems to be the case with the majority of T-C rears since they just weren't that torquey. I sold the gears and will sell the 8.8 as soon as I double-check the clutch thicknesses (more for the info of the buyer than as a concern for wear!).

If you don't mind my $.02, I would keep the T-C axles and add them to you Mustang. The rear track will be 1.5" wider, but that is good since the Mustang rear is an inch NARROWER than the front from the factory. So in the end, the rear will only be .5" wider than the front. FWIW, my 16" Pony's fit just fine. Yes, you'll need different e-brake cables from Ford Motorsport. I happended to use the '93 and later cable since I also got the mounting bracket that fits up under the floor right behind the e-brake - these are much better cables! Good luck.
 

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JR, Is the motorsports cable the same one found in their Cobra brake conversion kit and what are you talking about when you say you used the 93 and later cable and "bracket" ? Thanks
 

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The Ford Motorsport cable (center) is ajustable and uses a jam nut like the adjustable clutch cables. When you defeat the self adjuster, you have to manually adjust it as the rear pads wear down.

The "bracket" is a small piece that is tack-welded to teh trans tunnel on the '93 and later cars and holds the end of the e-brake cables right up behind the e-brake handle. I like these cables better, put it is a pain to find the bracket, let alone remove it (it is tack-welded in). I have a few pictures in my rear-disc tech article if you would like to see it!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I completed my rebuild a few weeks ago and have installed now. It was very easy - don't what I was concerned about. Man that original post was from nearly a year ago. At this rate, I'll have that car completed in the year 2525.
 
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