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Rear End Options

980 Views 5 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  Warrior 2011
Hello All,

I have not posted on here in YEARS due to college but now that's behind me and I'm working on the mustang again. I had the recent displeasure of my engine dropping a valve and ruining the motor. I now have the whole drivetrain out and am working on what to do for my rear end.

I recently purchased a mildly built 302 with a rebuilt AOD with a 2400 stall torque converter and shift kit. I was planning on dropping that setup into my car but my thoughts on the rear end keep changing. I traded an old C4 I had for an 8.8 with 3.73s and disc brakes out of a 2001 explorer. The guy told me it was a limited slip rear end but upon getting there it was not. I traded him anyway because I did not need 3 transmissions laying around haha. Here are the options that I have been debating, I welcome any thoughts so fire away!

Option 1: Redo the brakes and swap in the 8.8 as is, have open center 3.73 with 4 wheel disc brakes.
Option 2: Buy and install Limited slip for the 8.8, redo the brakes and have 3.73s with LS and 4 Wheel disc brakes
Option 3: Buy new ring, pinion and Limited slip unit for 8 inch and not have to mess with the braking system.
Option 4: You guys have a brilliant plan that I haven't though of!

(important to note I will need new rims to make the 8.8 work since I have 14" rims, and budget is a concern)
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If you are staying with the mildly built 302, I would just rebuild the 8" differential.
Aftermarket parts make it just as strong as an 8.8 without all the modifications.
With an 8.8 there's fab work and figuring the e-brake out.
I've seen some of these swaps locally on vintage mustangs and let's just say it looked like Ricky Raccoon rigged, hammered s%%t.
I guess if you are a good fabricator or you have help from someone with good welding/fabricating skills it will come out pretty good.
I you do get it done post some pics, it wold be nice to use as a reference for other potential differential swaps.
From my point of view it just sounds like a lot of work for a mild 302.
Good luck.
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Makedust has a good point. For a mild 302 the 8 inch will be OK. But if you have to have a heavy duty rear, why not go for a 9". It's period correct, and gears, axles, and everything else can be easily found as long as your wallet holds up.

Thanks for the replies, I think I am going to just stick with the 8 inch unless I stumble across a 9. Ive already done the brakes back there anyway. Now for rebuilding the axle where is a good place to get a posi unit and a ring and pinion that is good quality and wont break the bank?
There is a seller on flea bay that sells 8" track lock with gears. Can't remember his name. Getting old!
I have done some searching and found a place called Quick Performance. They have the Track Lock unit, ring and pinion and bearings for $585 with free shipping. Is this a pretty good price? Does anyone have any experience with this company? If I go the route of rebuilding the diff is there anything I should be aware of or any good instructions out there?
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