Dumb question, but I assume that if I replace my driveshaft and pumpkin at the same time, I can just unhook the ds at the front and pull it out through the back without lowering the gas tank or exhaust or anything. am I right?
Mercutio: How do you plan on getting the half-shafts out of the pumpkin? That's the one thing that screwing with my install plans. The Ford manual lists some special tools for doing it and it made it look like you had to pull the hubs to do it, and I was hoping to be able to do it without pulling the hubs. There's gotta be a way, yanno?
SDLX Bird, I'm not sure, but I was under the impression that the half shafts just kind of pull out of the pumpkin, or at least that's what the article in the tech section seems to indicate. Want to get together one of these days and have a pumpkin swapping party?
When I swap pumpkins, I always remove the halfshafts by unbolting the rear spindles from the control arms. The spindles are attached to the upper control arms by one bolt per side, and to the lower control arms by two bolts per side. I've found that it is the simplest way to go about things. After you remove the three bolts per side, you can just slide the halfshafts right out of the pumpkin and set them out of the way.
The driveshaft bolts will require a 12mm 12-point socket or box-end wrench. The socket is usually tough to fit in there, but sometimes it works. I usually just use the wrench.
As Racecougar said, the easiest way to remove the halfshafts is to unbolt the entire assembly with the spindle. It's easy, only three bolts per side. You won't even need to realign the rear afterward.
You really shouldn't need to remove the exhaust, but it would help. Also you may wanna buy a an adapter for your floor jack for the pumpkin. It's a pain in the arse lowering it up and down if you are not using a lift. I was in my driveway and it sucked, even with 2 people helping me lift it back up. Summit carries them, I just wish I knew they existed before I did mine.
Also Racecougar is right about the control arms. Also you will only need to remove one side to get the pumpkin out. The other shaft you won't need to remove.
The driveshaft is probably gonna be a pain. It was for me anyways, of course I was stupid and didn't rotate it to get to other bolts.
The drive shaft bolts are Locktited and are a real pain to get out without heat(as in torch)but the gas tank is so close it makes it too risky to torch them there. What I do is take one wheel hub lose and pull it out of the pumpkin. Take the four bolts holding the pumpkin in off, lower it and pull the other halfshaft out , slide it back far enough to get at the bolts with a 1/2 in drive rachet and socket .............Dan