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post #1 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-02-2010, 09:46 PM Thread Starter
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MN12 Rear Sub-Frames

Ok, I picked up a whole 1998 Mark VIII rear sub-frame for a good price. Now, I've read enough here to know I can use the pumpkin, LCA's (with perches), and rear discs.
Before anybody hits me with a , trust me I've tried, but can't find an answer to my question.

Can I just bolt up the whole Mark VIII sub-frame up unto my 1995 T-Bird and be done with it? What issues am I going to run into? I am picking up the assembly this weekend and was going to wait until I got it here to look it over better, but I figured you all would clue me in to what I'm in for! lol

Thank you in advance for all your help.
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post #2 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-02-2010, 10:15 PM
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It'll bolt on, the issue will be getting the old one off, the sub-frame bolts are usually quite difficult to remove.

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post #3 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-02-2010, 10:16 PM
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p.s. Let me know if you need some perches.

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post #4 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-03-2010, 01:08 AM Thread Starter
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We got a lot of impact tools, 150+psi air & cutting torches (not necessarily at the same time). There isn't a bolt in front of me that doesn't come off.... And yes, I have had 'em requiring broke loose by hand or cut off with a chisel, cutting wheel or torch since impact wouldn't do it. We had a 2 1/2 ton truck rear end in there last week that after breaking a few tools, Dan (the boss) wouldn't let us touch anymore. It wasn't me that broke them and I told him I could get it, but the damage had already been done...

Also, I'm from Maine and can tell you working on Florida cars/trucks is MUCH easier since there is little to no corrosion to deal with like there is on northern vehicles EVERY TIME! That winter salt does a number on them; I always smile when I go to a pick-a-part here, crawl under a 15 year old vehicle, and find the undercarriage looks like it just rolled off the showroom floor! whoohoo!

Last edited by NetKeym; 02-03-2010 at 01:55 AM.
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post #5 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-03-2010, 01:40 AM
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Don't forget the parking brake. I plan to do this same thing but there is no room in the garage. I also would do the stainless steel braided lines for your rear disk brakes, it completes the upgrade IMHO. DO you have new diff bushings I would reuse any old ones. Its strait forward and if you buy it this way from a junkyard you pay less than if you bought any of it separately.

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Now with new ball joints...again
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post #6 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-03-2010, 01:54 AM Thread Starter
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Don't forget the parking brake. I plan to do this same thing but there is no room in the garage. I also would do the stainless steel braided lines for your rear disk brakes, it completes the upgrade IMHO. DO you have new diff bushings I would reuse any old ones. Its strait forward and if you buy it this way from a junkyard you pay less than if you bought any of it separately.
Ummm, what about the parking brake? Am I gonna be missing some pieces? Do I have to fab something? And yes, new bushings, all the rest of them are new on the car (well, most of them)...lol SS lines? Sure, why not!

Ok, I've researched the parking brake issue, but still don't know what I've got and what I'm missing until I get it up here this weekend, so we'll see.

Last edited by NetKeym; 02-03-2010 at 08:09 AM. Reason: Searched on the parking brake issue.....
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post #7 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-03-2010, 11:13 AM
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ok just curious. what is the advantage to putting the mark viii subframe in?
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post #8 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-03-2010, 12:24 PM
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ok just curious. what is the advantage to putting the mark viii subframe in?
only thing that comes to mind is the weight savings.

and disc brakes if you don't have them.

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post #9 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-03-2010, 01:05 PM Thread Starter
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only thing that comes to mind is the weight savings.

and disc brakes if you don't have them.
Yup, aluminum and discs... also got a 3.73TL carrier I'm gonna put in at the same time.
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post #10 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-04-2010, 07:17 AM
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I have a question along these lines:
My 1991 subframe is rusty and nasty, and i have a Mark VIII frame welded and reay to pop in.

Should I drill some holes above the bolts to saturate them with PB first? Any tips on where to drill? I'm thinking just a 1/4" hole to fit the spray "straw" through, so I can get them good and soaked with PB for a few days beforeI try busting them loose. A broken bolt.... I don't even want to think about it. lol

This is a race car, so really have no problem with cutting abigger hole, think maybe I should inspect things before I try busting them loose? I'm sort of worried about invasive rust and spinning nuts.

"Keep making it thinner until it breaks, then go one size bigger."
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post #11 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-04-2010, 10:57 AM
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There is a thread "IRS Subframe bolts". Read it. You have some good things to know from that thread when you are going to change the subfarme

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post #12 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-04-2010, 09:18 PM
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Should I drill some holes above the bolts to saturate them with PB first? Any tips on where to drill? I'm thinking just a 1/4" hole to fit the spray "straw" through, so I can get them good and soaked with PB for a few days beforeI try busting them loose.
That would be a good idea.

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post #13 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-04-2010, 10:01 PM
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Did it tonight, worked great... that is to say, I soaked the rear bolts easily with a 1/4" hole each. Took some measuring to pinpoint the exact location, there's actually a tiny tiny dimple punched into the sheetmetal above them.

Will work on the front bolts later.

"Keep making it thinner until it breaks, then go one size bigger."
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post #14 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-05-2010, 01:06 PM
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I'm not sure soaking them will help; they're listed as being "Epoxy Coated" in the factory manual.

I guess that's for when Loctite Red isn't safe enough.

I'll need to do this before too long; last I checked, there weren't bushing available to replace them all.

Please let us know if the PB blaster made a difference; a 1/4" hole is much easier than a 1.5" hole, lol.

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post #15 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-05-2010, 01:18 PM
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I actually drilled two holes in either side, one for my eye and one for my LED light. The bolts are conspiculously rusted, so whatever coating was on them is likely compramised by now.

"Keep making it thinner until it breaks, then go one size bigger."
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post #16 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-05-2010, 07:14 PM
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so is the entire subframe assembly aluminum or just some parts.

i was also wondering if anybody can find the thread on here showing what spots should be rewelded on the stock subframes to help strengthen them. i know i have read it once but i cant find it anymore. thanx
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post #17 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-05-2010, 08:04 PM
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Only the lower control arms are aluminum, the rest is steel.

As for welding, just look the seams over and run a bead wherever you see a gap.

"Keep making it thinner until it breaks, then go one size bigger."
My Cougar XR7
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post #18 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-05-2010, 10:06 PM
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On a car with almost no rust, I broke one of the rear subframe bolts. Everthing came out with a some work but I'll tell you from experience, most don't want to come out after many years. Good luck with removal.
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post #19 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-06-2010, 06:01 AM
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i was also wondering if anybody can find the thread on here showing what spots should be rewelded on the stock subframes to help strengthen them. i know i have read it once but i cant find it anymore. thanx
This might be what you're looking for!

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post #20 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-06-2010, 11:12 AM
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yep thats it. thanks joe
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post #21 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-06-2010, 03:55 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by kpthefatty View Post
so is the entire subframe assembly aluminum or just some parts.

i was also wondering if anybody can find the thread on here showing what spots should be rewelded on the stock subframes to help strengthen them. i know i have read it once but i cant find it anymore. thanx
The lower control arms and the differential pumpkin are aluminum, the upper control arms and sub-frame itself are steel.
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post #22 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-06-2010, 04:49 PM
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post #23 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-08-2010, 08:31 PM
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Wouldn't it be easier, and just as effective, to change the axle and LCAs and leave the frame alone?

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post #24 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-09-2010, 08:32 PM Thread Starter
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Got her home!!!



Here she is, looks real good. A lot of dust, but no damage, rust, pitting, accident or otherwise. 3.27 gears are coming out for 3.73TL next! BTW, it weighs in at 294lbs complete with tires which is as accurate as I could get with it in the van. Later, at the shop, I'll get a more accurate weight...

Also, for those using the link above for the IRS build up, be aware that Raxles no longer makes those axles - I don't live far from them and I called them. Turns out they were incredibly expensive as well...

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post #25 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-10-2010, 02:21 PM Thread Starter
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I Was Way Off...

OK, I was way off, it weighs 355 lbs. I also noticed that the knuckles (or whatever they are called - where the axles go through and the bearings ride) are aluminum as well.

So the benefits for doing this swap as someone asked earlier are:

1) Rear Disc Brakes
2) Aluminum Pumpkin
3) Aluminum Lower Control Arms
4) Aluminum Knuckles
5) Late-Model Mark VIII HD half-shafts (1.25")
6) In my particular case, one of my UCA's is bent, so it fixes that as well!

I really didn't think that assembly was gonna weigh that much; I can't wait to weigh the rear sub-frame currently in the 'Bird!
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post #26 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-10-2010, 02:44 PM
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Thunderbird/cougar knuckles are aluminum too.

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post #27 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-10-2010, 02:53 PM Thread Starter
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Thunderbird/cougar knuckles are aluminum too.
OK, wasn't sure about that... Thanks XR7-4.6
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post #28 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-23-2010, 04:18 AM
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I'm in the middle of rebuilding the complete rear end of mine. I had the half-shafts made out of tool steel. I work for a tool steel company here in Sweden and we very good experience with racing cars that use tool steel in there half-shafts. My company has been selling steel in USA since before your Civil War.
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post #29 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-23-2010, 06:05 AM
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I'm in the middle of rebuilding the complete rear end of mine. I had the half-shafts made out of tool steel. I work for a tool steel company here in Sweden and we very good experience with racing cars that use tool steel in there half-shafts. My company has been selling steel in USA since before your Civil War.
Excellent idea. You can also play with the wall thickness of the shaft, and possibly go up to 20mm greater outer diameter.

"Keep making it thinner until it breaks, then go one size bigger."
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post #30 of 47 (permalink) Old 02-23-2010, 06:42 AM
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Excellent idea. You can also play with the wall thickness of the shaft, and possibly go up to 20mm greater outer diameter.
The question I have to ask is: Has anyone ever broken the center part of a half shaft? Isn't the weak link the OEM sections that go into the pumpkin and knuckle?

Oh and I say niner niner niner to those with stuck, rusty bolts.... Mine came out with no problem. Gotta love southern cars.

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