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SCJax2018

Rear Axle

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Has anyone modified a Ford or Chevy rear axle to fit their Pathfinder? The rear axle in my 96 LE is going out and I cannot find one single person who will give me a straight answer on how much it will cost to rebuild the damned thing. I've heard enough BS from different people to start a dairy farm. What the hell is so difficult about give me a damn price and I'll say yes or no. Anyway, I got an rear axle out of an old Ford Ranger that was just completely rebuilt before the truck got wrecked and I'm thinking about modifying it to put up under the Pathfinder. I really wanted to keep the Pathfinder all original, but obviously that ain't going to happen.

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If you have a 4x4, gear ratios will be a big issue. Parking brake will be an issue, and you'll probably have to get custom brake hoses to connect from the Pathfinder body to the Ranger axle. Is the width of the axles similar? Your bolt pattern will be different too, so you'll have to get new rear wheels and have it mismatched so you can't rotate your tires. Not to mention actually bolting the axle under the truck, which will require a good deal of custom fabrication. Honestly you'll be far better off getting a good condition used R50 axle from the junkyard if you can't find a shop you want to commit to for rebuilding your current axle. If you think finding a shop to give you a rebuild quote is difficult, see what happens when you bring up a Ranger axle swap; most fab shops will probably just try to avoid getting involved entirely.

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Sorry, but this thread is nonsense. It’s maybe the 3rd or 4th post where you’ve claimed that everyone’s giving you BS about rebuilding a diff. Well, considering I’m one of those guys who has provided plenty of information through forum posts and direct messages—the same guy who has rebuilt several of these units, done numerous axle projects, who hoards Nissan diffs and axles, and even offered to send you a completely rebuilt unit when you first started complaining about it—I’m trying to not take this personally. But frankly, I think you’ve got some unrealistic expectation from all the shops you’ve contacted and are probably poorly conveying the problem, and it’s these posts that are becoming BS.

 

Seriously, you’re asking about what is effectively an SAS without steering components, yet you won’t just go to a damn junkyard, pull a <$200 differential from practically any Pathfinder, Hardbody, Frontier, or Xterra, check the backlash with a $10 tool, and swap it in? A day, tops, in labor, <$300 in parts and fluids, and access to the exact Factory Service Manual used by Nissan technicians, to be done with this problem?  You even have an opportunity to improve your driving and towing characteristics (via upgrade to LSD and/or lower gearing for a whopping $0 extra), without having to deal with any of the front gearing because you’re 2wd?You’ve got to be kidding me! 

 

Face the fact that most shops don’t have experience rebuilding Nissan diffs because they probably don’t fail often. But any drivetrain or off-road shop can simply rebuild that diff for whatever they charge Toyota guys. It’s the exact same design, and it’s a trivial one requiring little more than hand tools to swap, and not much more to rebuild. Bearings can be bought on RockAuto, and diff gaskets from Nissan for cheap. And the FSM describes every single step to do it!

 

But here we are talking about swapping entire axles from Fords!  I can tell you it’s significantly harder than just going to a junkyard and buying an axle from a Pathfinder, and yet still more difficult than just pulling the diff.  I say get your hands dirty or get rid of the truck if this is really the hassle and decision you’re facing. 

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Don’t listen to all the negativity in this thread. These guys are not the experts. Get in touch with user johann_peralta on here. He can weld anything to anything.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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I finally found a person who took care of the issue without a line of bull@&#33;*%. I told him to give me a price to fix the damn thing and he gave me a price, we agreed on it and he fixed it. Thankfully it wasn't as bad as I thought it was, but would have been if I had kept driving it.

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On 6/30/2019 at 3:10 PM, mjotrainbrain said:

If you have a 4x4, gear ratios will be a big issue. Parking brake will be an issue, and you'll probably have to get custom brake hoses to connect from the Pathfinder body to the Ranger axle. Is the width of the axles similar? Your bolt pattern will be different too, so you'll have to get new rear wheels and have it mismatched so you can't rotate your tires. Not to mention actually bolting the axle under the truck, which will require a good deal of custom fabrication. Honestly you'll be far better off getting a good condition used R50 axle from the junkyard if you can't find a shop you want to commit to for rebuilding your current axle. If you think finding a shop to give you a rebuild quote is difficult, see what happens when you bring up a Ranger axle swap; most fab shops will probably just try to avoid getting involved entirely.

 

I finally found a person who took care of the issue without a line of bull@&#33;*%. I told him to give me a price to fix the damn thing and he gave me a price, we agreed on it and he fixed it. Thankfully it wasn't as bad as I thought it was, but would have been if I had kept driving it. He even did a rear brake job for me for no extra charge.

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So what was wrong with it?

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17 hours ago, Mr_Reverse said:

So what was wrong with it?

 

Apparently someone who didn't know what they were doing changed out the ring gear and pinion and had things all screwed up. I was expecting to have to buy a complete rebuild kit the way it was thumping and banging back there, but he said all he needed to do was take it apart and clean everything and put it back together the correct way. He did replace the bearings because the outers didn't look too hot.

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Odd, they are one of the easier differentials to work on. At least I find them easier to set up than a Ford 8.8 or GM 10/12 bolt. 

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On 10/5/2019 at 10:14 PM, Mr_Reverse said:

Odd, they are one of the easier differentials to work on. At least I find them easier to set up than a Ford 8.8 or GM 10/12 bolt. 

 

I'm not a rear axle man myself. Infact I don't think I have ever been inside a rear axle before or if I have it has been years ago. Whatever the guy did he fixed the clunking that was going on. This was a very noticeable clunk when you let up on the gas going down the highway or pull forward after backing up. First time I heard it I though I had hit a rock or something in the road, but just before I finally found someone to work on it for me, it got to where you could also feel the clunking and it was getting very noticeably louder.

 

Also before, with the truck on the ground and trans in neutral and could easily twist the drive shaft at the rear axle back and forth from 12 O clock to just a hair past 2 O clock.

Edited by SCJax2018
Added a forgotten detail

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I don't deny that there was a problem in there, I am just saying that the H233B differential is very easy to set up. However, I also know that no matter how simple you make something, someone will find a way to screw it up. A good percentage of my work is to repair "fixes" that are done by people who should not be allowed to touch a wrench. 

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Like I said, I've never been inside of a Nissan rear axle. One of the reasons I didn't try to tackle the job myself. I looked all over YouTube and found a ton of videos on axle repairs but none of the axles looked like mine and they didn't really explain anything. Found a few people who offered to rebuild or sell a rebuilt center assembly, but they would never give a straight answer on a price.  I was on the way to Aamco when I stumbled across the guy who fixed it for me.

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