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Rear Disc Brake Conversion



Next, we slipped the axle shaft into the housing, after removing the 4 temporary nuts we had put on earlier.  Be careful when sliding the seal through the hole in the center of the dust shield (this was the part you enlarged earlier).  



Line up the new retainer plate over the four studs (those bolts that you ground a flat spot on) and put on the upset lock nuts.  In this picture, we are getting the nuts started by hand using a socket and extension.  Unlike the factory studs, you need to keep a finger on the back side of the bolt head until you got the nut started.  The bolt will not rotate because of its close proximity to the axle tube.



I apologize for switching sides here.  I forgot to snap a picture after we got the axle shaft in and bolted down.  We slipped on the rotor and the caliper (with pads). 

Note:  Switching from drum brakes to disc brakes will cause the wheel stud to be a bit shorter than desired.  There are two ways to handle this.....use extended thread lug nuts or press out the old wheel studs and replace them with some longer ones.  Dorman P/N 610-368 are reported to be slightly longer and will work well with the conversion.  Since '03, TJs could be had with factory rear disc brakes.  As such, the wheel stud used on these models could be used also.  The DC part number is 1-04762841 (which was confirmed via e-mail by a Jeeper that purchased them from his local Jeep dealership).  The DC lugs are 1/4" longer than the stock lugs (making them 1 7/8" in length).

The only thing left to do here is to plumb in the brake line.  The e-brake cable has also been attached to the back of the bracket.

If you haven't done double flared brake line connections, I would suggest getting hold of someone who has and invite them to come over with their flaring toolbox.  Although I didn't ask, I suspect that a quality flaring tool for steel brake lines costs a few bucks.  I was lucky that my SoCal buddy had both the tools and the skill to do a very nice job on my brake lines.  Now that I've seen the little tricks for making a nice double flare connection, I think I could crank one out given a couple of practice runs on a scrap piece of brake line.

Note:  Since this write-up was completed, I've had the opportunity to do a couple of brake line flares.  I used a rented flaring tool from AutoZone.  They have a variety of tools that they will rent for free (you have to provide them with a refundable deposit) and I've used a few of them (pitman arm puller, power steering pulley remover, flaring tool, spring compressor, etc.) 


Once we had the steel line cut and flared, my buddy welded on a nice little bracket that comes as part of a brake mounting kit from Currie Enterprises.  I have to give some praise here to Currie....that little kit had everything we needed to transition the brake line from steel to rubber hose.  The mounting bracket was even cut to fit the curve of the D-44 tubes.  When you call Currie at 714-528-6957, ask for the Ford Explorer Rear Disc Brake Conversion Hose Kit.  The part number is #6013 and runs under $40. 

The kit contains the clips to weld to the axle tubes, clips for them, hoses, banjo bolts, and copper sealing washers both rear brakes.


Here is the completed brake line interface with everything hooked up and back in place.  I gotta remember to hit that new bracket with a bit of flat black paint so it won't rust.



And a close up shot of the mounting bracket and the retainer clip that is provided with the flexible hose in the Currie kit.


NOTE:  I received an e-mail from Robert Murphy which contained some info that I'll pass along for all to benefit from. 

He said...."Instead of the Currie brake hoses, you can use Mopar Part # 52128430AC and 52158431AB.  These are the hoses for the disc brake rear axle on a TJ, and include a bolt on bracket that mounts on the spring perch, and the hard tube that goes all the way to the factory T fitting on the hose coming from the frame.  They are obviously for a D44, but can be reshaped to work on the D35 if needed.  This eliminates the need for welding the retainer bracket on, and double flaring the brake tubing.  This makes it a bolt on proposition."


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