Gunn's Mustang Hub Swap DIY (2017 update)


4th Gear Poster
Sep 22, 2023
Vehicle Details
95 T-bird with 5.0and m5r2 swap for lemons
Country flag
It's my thread so I'd rather post it here...

The basic idea is that by swapping to Mustang hubs, you can use much cheaper 17" mustang wheels on your tbird. My specific needs are a bit more complicated though because I essentially needed to do this twice: once for the hubs on my car and once on the full set of spares I take to the racetrack

Background Reading
MN-12 Bolt Circle Change and Brake Upgrades

HOWTO: drill the rear rotors and hubs (without a fixture)

HOWTO: Replace rear wheel bearings

Front Hubs
Parts Needed
93-97 Tbird Front Spindles

94-04 SN95 Mustang Front Hubs (#F6ZZ-1104-AA or TIMKEN 513115): $22-$45 depending on brand on RockAuto

93-97 Tbird Hub spindle nuts OR modified Dorman 615-098.1 spindle nuts.

94-05 SN95 Mustang Front Rotors

93-97 tbird calipers+brackets OR do the PBR upgrade and swap in 99-04 Mustang GT calipers+brackets.

(5) 1/2"-20 lug nuts per wheel (stock tbird used M12x1.5 lugnuts)

Tools Needed
Impact Gun: makes spindle nut removal a snap

250ft-lb torque wrench: avail as free loan-a-tool from Autozone OEM 1/2 in. drive adjustable click type torque wrench 27043 - Read 3 Reviews on OEM #27043

Giant Vise: makes torqueing down the spindle nut a cinch

* You need to use 93+ front spindles
* If your stock spindle nuts get messed up during removal, the Dorman 615-098 spindle nuts ($5 at autozone) have messed up threads but can be fixed by chasing the threads with a simple M24x2.0 tap before use. - M24x2.0 tap is <$15 on eBay

* The dust covers may be removed using a hammer and chisel. The key is to whack the chisel until a gap opens up between the cover and the spindle and then angle the chisel upwards so it forces the cover off on the next tap. They can be reused.

My Decisions
* I first attempted this on my two spare front spindles and it was seriously like a 15 min job.
* You tap off the dust cover, zip off the spindle nut with the impact gun, the old spindle will lift straight off and you drop the new spindle on and reverse the process.

Rear Hubs

OPTION: Use Cobra rear spindles
99-04 Cobra Rear hubs may be swapped onto the rear tbird spindles but you will need cobra rear rotors (to match the new bolt pattern), and a rear caliper relocation bracket to use the stock tbird brake calipers. Even though someone offered me a good deal on the rear hubs, I didn't want to spend another $100+ on brackets.

Cobra brake 11.65" rotor upgrade kit.

Parts Needed
(5) ARP 100-7703 Studs per rear axle -- I needed 4 sets. Pepboys was selling 4 of them for ~$14/ea shipped on eBay
(5) 1/2"-20 lug nuts per wheel. All in, I need 25. I was able to buy 40 from eBay for $22 so I have enough to use for the install process as well.

- Unnecessary if you are redrilling the hubs while still on the car
- Very likely to be needed if you are using used Cobra rear hubs
- Need to be pressed in/out
(2) Rear wheel bearings (ex: TIMKEN SET49 @ <$24/ea on Rockauto)
(2) Rear wheel bearing retainers (TIMKEN RET115 @ $1.09/ea on Rockauto)

Tools Needed
- 5x4.25" -> 5x4.5" drill jig: $122.60 shipped from Menu
- 1/4" drill bits: for pilot holes
- Cutting oil
- Hydraulic press for installation of bearings

(3-4) 39/64" or 15.5mm drill bits:
- keep in mind I'm planning to drill 5 holes x 4 rear axles + 5 holes x 4 brake rotors = 40 holes. You will want a spare though.
- The hole size is knurl specific. My ARP studs have a knurl of 0.625" so I need to drill a hole smaller than that and pull the stude through. 39/64" = 0.6094" and 15.5mm = 0.6102"
- I chose 15.5mm drill bits because I found them for $3.76 shipped on eBay 1/2" Straight Shank 15.5mm Split Point Tip HSS High Speed Steel Twist Drill F9O0 whereas 39/64" bits were more like $10/ea.

I'm frugal so I picked the re-drilling route for the rears (drill out the tbird hubs to 5x4.5). I was NOT planning on replacing the rear wheel bearings since I have a set of race spares (if the rear bearings go out during a race, I'll simply swap in a different axle/spindle assembly).

- Use the fixture to drill out the existing hubs. MadMikey says you can do this ON THE CAR if you plan to reuse the stock hubs and drill through the brake rotor and hub in one-shot (obviously starting with a smaller drill bit and working your way up to 39/64 or 15.5mm). Take your time, go slow, and use plenty of cutting oil.
- Soak the old wheel studs in PB BLaster or equivalent and bang them out.
- Install the new ARP wheel studs with a sacrificial 1/2-20 lug nut and impact gun.
Saw these mentioned elsewhere on here. Since I'm not planning on going very big tire-wise does anyone have any first-hand knowledge of these?


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