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The Ford 7.5-Inch Axle

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Usage:

The Ford 7.5-Inch axle came in a few different vehicles including the:

Ford Aerostar (1985-1997)

Ford Bronco II (1984-1990)

Ford Mustang (1979-2011)

Ford Ranger (1983-2011)

For the purpose of this article, we're only going to discuss the Ford Ranger and Bronco II.

All Ford Bronco II's (1984-1990) came with a 7.5-Inch rear axle.

All Ford Rangers came with a 7.5-Inch axle from 1983-1989. In 1990, Ford introduced a 4.0 liter V6 in the Ford Ranger. From 1990 on, all 4.0L Ford Rangers came equipped with a 8.8-Inch axle, but the Ford 7.5-Inch axle was still available in other Ranger models.

Axle Width Differences:

People have asked about the widths of axle shafts to swap shafts from one axle to another.

The early 1983-1992 Ranger axles are 1-inch shorter than the 1993-up pieces (Both sides). This means that the an entire Ranger axle assembly from 1993-up is 2-inches wider than 1983-1992.

The right side Bronco II axle shaft is 1-5/8" wider than the 1983-1992 Ranger shaft. All of this additional width is on the passenger side. The drivers side shaft is the same length in either axle assembly.

On ALL Ranger/Bronco II's the drivers side axle shaft is longer than the passenger side.

There is no difference between 7.5 & 8.8 axle shaft lengths provided you stay in the same year window.

Mustang Note: If you go to a salvage yard, you may find that the left side shafts have been removed from 1983-1992 Rangers and Bronco II's. These axle shafts are the same length as the axle shafts in the "Fox" (1979-1993) Mustangs EXCEPT that Ranger/bronco II shafts are five-lug and Mustangs are four lug. Ranger/Bronco II shafts are frequently "pillaged" for use in converting a Mustang to five-lug wheels.

Specifications:

Ford 7.5-Inch Axle - Specifications - Ring Gear & Differential

 Ring Gear Diameter  7.5 (7-1/2) Inches
 Ring Gear Bolts  (10) 7/16" x 20
 Differential Cover Bolts  10
 Pinion Stem  1.626 Inches
 Pinion Splines  28
 Pinion Bearing Preload (New)  14-19 in lb
 Pinion Bearing Preload (Used)  8-10 in lb
 Back Lash  .011"-.016"
 Ring Gear Bolt Torque  60 ft lb
 Bearing Cap Bolt Torque  60 ft lb
 Fluid Type

Use hypoid gear lubricant SAE 75W80 or 80W90 (Add 2 oz. friction modifier to axles with limited slips)

 Fluid Capacity

5 pints (expect to use 2-3 quarts if changing the fluid. More if you have an aftermarket heavy duty cover.

 

Ford 7.5-Inch Axle - Specifications - Axle Shaft

Vehicle Side Spline Diameter Length Bolt Circle Stud Size Bearing
1983-1992 Ford Ranger Right Hand 28-Spline 1.21 Inch 26.25 Inch 5 x 4-1/2 Inch 1/2 Inch Press 1.4 Inch
1983-1992 Ford Ranger Left Hand 28-Spline 1.21 Inch 29.125 Inch 5 x 4-1/2 Inch 1/2 Inch Press 1.4 Inch
1993-1997 Ford Ranger Right Hand 28-Spline 1.21 Inch 27.25 Inch 5 x 4-1/2 Inch 1/2 Inch Press 1.4 Inch
1993-1997 Ford Ranger Left Hand 28-Spline 1.21 Inch 30.125 Inch 5 x 4-1/2 Inch 1/2 Inch Press 1.4 Inch
1984-1990 Ford Bronco II Right Hand 28-Spline 1.21 Inch 27.6875 Inch 5 x 4-1/2 Inch 1/2 Inch Press 1.4 Inch
1984-1990 Ford Bronco II Left Hand 28-Spline 1.21 Inch 29.125 Inch 5 x 4-1/2 Inch 1/2 Inch Press 1.4 Inch

 

Axle Dimensions
 
Ranger 1983-1997
7.5-Inch Axle
Ranger 1983-1997
8.8-Inch Axle
Ranger 1998-2009
7.5-Inch Axle
Ranger 1998-2009
8.8-Inch Axle

Bronco II 1984-1990

7.5 Inch Axle (1)

Ranger 2010-2011
7.5-Inch Axle
With Disc brakes
Ranger 2010-2011
8.8-Inch Axle
With Disc Brakes
Explorer 8.8
Width WMS-WMS 56-1/2 inches 56-1/2 inches 58-1/2 inches 58-1/2 inches 58 inches unk unk 59-1/2 inches
Axle tube diameter (1983-2009 models): 2.80 inches 2.80 inches 2.80 inches 2.80 inches 2.80 inches 3.25 inches 3.25 inches 3.25 inches
Pinion Offset Right Of Center unk 2 inches unk 2 inches 1-1/4 Inches unk 2 inches 2 inches
Pinion Offset Below Centerline unk 1.50 inches unk 1.50 inches unk unk 1.50 inches 1.5 inches
Pinion length (axle centerline to u-joint centerline): 11-5/8 inches 11-5/8 inches 11-5/8 inches 11-5/8 inches 11-5/8 inches 11-5/8 inches 11-5/8 inches 11-5/8 inches
Bottom Of Housing From Centerline 5-inches 5-3/4 inches 5 inches 5-3/4 inches 5 inches 5 inches 5-3/4 inches 5-3/4 inches
Stock Spring Perch Width 38-1/2 inches 38-1/2 inches 38-1/2 inches 38-1/2 inches 40-1/2 inches 38-1/2 inches 38-1/2 inches 38-1/2 inches
Axle Spline / Diameter 28 / 1.21 inches 28 / 1.21 inches 28 / 1.21 inches 28 / 1.21 inches 28 / 1.21 inches 28 / 1.21 inches 28 / 1.21 inches 31 / 1.32 inches
Pinion Stem Diameter 1.626 inches 1.626 inches 1.626 inches 1.626 inches 1.626 inches 1.626 inches 1.626 inches 1.626 inches
Ring Gear Diameter 7.50 inches 8.80 inches 7.50 inches 8.80 inches 7.50 inches 7.50 inches 8.80 inches 8.80 inches
(1) The Bronco II 7.5 inch rear axle is ~1-5/8 inches wider than the Ranger 7.5 inch axle. All the additional width is in the passenger side.

 Identifying Your Axle:

You can identify which axle you have by the tag attached to the inspection cover.  
 
Here is an example of an axle tag:

 

Looking at that tag, you can see the gear ratio stamped on the lower left, and the axle size (ring gear diameter) stamped in the bottom middle.

So looking at the axle tag above, you can see it's a 3.73 gear ratio in a 7.5 inch axle.

Axle Codes:

The Ford 7.5-Inch axle can also be identified by the sicker on the drivers door. Check out our Ford 7.5 & 8.8 Inch Axle Code page for a break down of codes.

Miscellaneous:

View Exploded Axle Diagram

 

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