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Early Bronco

Late Model






Disk Brake Conversion for Early Bronco's

This conversion works for three reasons:
  • The Chevy spindles will bolt directly onto the Ford Bronco Dana 44 front axle
  • The Ford hubs and wheel bearings will work on the Chevy spindles
  • The Ford rotors work with the Chevy calipers
You do not need to change your tie rods to the inverted "Y" system like you do with some other conversions. Since you are using Ford hubs, stock Ford wheels can be used.

It is recommended that you read both Ford and Chevy manuals about their front hub assemblies and brake systems before starting so everything makes sense. Use new parts whenever possible. Some used parts are OK, but that is your call and a cost/benefit decision. Systems do not get any more important than front hub and brake assemblies, especially with those big 33x12.5 tires on a 20+ year old truck.

Note: Use new bolts, nuts, and mounting hardware. Be sure to use at least a grade 5 and preferably a grade 8. Remember, we're talking about your life depending on the brakes being functional.

The Bronco should have a Dana 44 front axle. If you have an earlier Bronco with the Dana 30, you might want to replace it anyway. When you do this conversion, especially if you have to install a new Dana 44, you should consider replacing the ball joints, bearings, and seals. If you can afford it (and want to) this is also the time to install a new TrakLok or locker since you will have the front end apart. All Ford parts can come from a '76-79 Ford Bronco or 1/2 ton 4x4 truck, unless otherwise specified.

Ford Parts List

  • Hub/rotor assembly - used is OK if the rotors can be resurfaced.
  • Inner and outer wheel bearings and seals - new, of course.
  • Locking hubs - A good time to put in Warn or other good ones.
  • Wheel bearing nuts and washers.
  • '76-77 Bronco disk brake master cylinder - new, of course.
  • '76-77 Bronco brake booster and bracket - optional.

Chevy donor parts can come from a '72 through '76 Blazer/Jimmy or other 1/2 ton GM 4x4 truck with front disk brakes. Some sources recommend starting with a '73 and others recommend ending with a '74, so use your best judgement or talk to a parts dealer. The '73 and '74 will Definitely work. You can use all new parts or save some money by obtaining used parts. The tradeoffs are up to you. Some things, such as bearings, seals, and brake pads should, of course, always be new.

Chevy Parts List

  • Spindles - get used. Otherwise, new ones are $82/ea in J.C. Whitney.
  • Backing plate/caliper mount - definitely get used.
  • Calipers - get new, they are pretty cheap and important.
  • Inner spindle bearings and seals - new, of course.
  • Brake pads - new, of course.
  • Flexible brake hose - new, of course.
  • Caliper mounting pin/bolts - new ones preferable.

How to do it

  • Remove the drum brake assembly and spindles from Dana 44.
  • Install new spindle inner bearings and seals.
  • Bolt on the backing plate and spindle.
  • Install new wheel bearings and seals.
  • Slide on the hub/rotor assembly.
  • Tighten the wheel bearings as per specs.
  • Install the locking hub assemblies as per specs.
  • Install the calipers with new pads using new mounting pins.
  • There will be a slight (0.1") interference between the calipers and the axle flange. Grind off a little from both parts until there is a ~0.1" clearance.
  • Bolt on flexible brake hoses with new crush gaskets.
  • Use a brass adaptor to attach the brake hose to the brake line.
  • Use old or fabricate a new brake hose securing system.
  • Bolt on a new master cylinder with or without booster.
  • Use flexible, stainless steel brake line to connect the master cylinder to the proportioning valve, or form your own.
  • You can use the stock drum proportioning valve with no modifications.
  • Bleed system, test, test, then test one more time.




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