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In our last installment, we saw what the five lug '93 Cobra wheels looked like on a '93 Cobra with the M2300K kit and long SN-95 axles. Now let's take a look at it with the Ranger axle/North Race Cars bracket conversion. First, a few words on the axle swap.



It was easy. I used mid '80s Ranger left side axles from the boneyard, it took the removal of five axles from four pickups and one Bronco II to find two good ones with no brindling to the bearing area and no runout. I bead blasted the axles completely, then went over the bearing and seal portion with a wire wheel to clean them perfectly. I also wire wheeled the polished the machined area near the splines, because polishing smooths the metal, removing possible stress risers, and gives you a stronger axle. I then had both axles magnafluxed to make good and damn sure they were both tough enough, passed both mag tests. The Ranger studs were a little short, so I removed the studs from the SN-95 axles and swapped them in.

Alrighty then, good enough for Cobra work. While the rear end is all apart, it's always a good idea to install new oil seals, because of the labor required to get to them should there be a problem. 4 bucks each from NAPA, and US made (for the time being) so in they went. The NRC brackets are very well made parts, bolted right on with no drama whatsoever. They don't come with instructions, those are on their web site, and they don't say anything about using the Cobra anti-moan brackets. You need them, believe me. Without them, you guessed it, the rear brakes will moan on moderate application. To my surprise, they fit the new inboard location with the NRC brackets just fine, I was planning to have to cut and re-weld the clamp section further outward on the bracket, but it wasn't necessary. Nice.

The intermediate brackets that hold the calipers should be centered on the rotors, and due to manufacturing variation, they aren't always. For that reason, NRC includes a baggie of hardware, including washers to use as spacers for this bracket to center it, if necessary. The driver side didn't need spacers, it was perfectly centered as is. The passenger side did, but the supplied hardware store washers were too thick, they would offset the bracket to the other side. So I used machine shims instead, which, at .030, were about half as thick as the washers. Perfect. The rest went together without a hitch, I had to bend the metal portion of the soft hoses forward and slightly outward to give some slack to the rubber hoses to work in the calipers' new position.



Note also the flipped quads, needed to clear the 275/40 tires. I also had to tweak the parking brake cable brackets a little to clear the tires. Refilled the rear end with new lube and Ford dealer friction modifier, and hey, everything works perfect. I especially like the new inboard position of the wheels, looks totally stock to my eyes.













And, of course, the beauty shots with the caps installed, making the car look like a bone stocker with springs:







I bought this car brand new in '93, and started playing with it almost immediately. I had fun returning it to a stock appearance, removing the "That's so ten years ago" windshield banner and Buick supercharged emblems from the hood, and the "That's so five years ago" clear headlights, swapping the originals back in. Long ago, I painted the louvered part of the cowl grille and the door handles a matching teal color, but I don't know if I should go back to black on them or not, it's the last non-stock touch on the car. Probably leave them like that for the time being, at least it's tasteful. I think.

Lastly, I'm not the only one who has these wheels on a car, am I? Post up your rides!

-MJS
 

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Hey MJS, I have a '93 Cobra that I'm going to do the 5-lug conversion with (Jeffo was supposed to have shipped my wheels last friday). My question is, what rear rotor am I going to need to run (to keep the stock rear discs) ?
Thanks!
Mark
Mark,

The '93 Cobra rear disc brake setup is actually the '87-'88 Thunderbird Turbo Coupe rear setup, axles and all. There is no direct replacement five lug rotor for this system, so you will have to have your rotors drilled for the five lug pattern. It's not difficult, and shouldn't be expensive at a machine shop that has an indexed drill press or mill. Sometimes the Ranger axle flange needs to be turned down a few thousandths to go into the Turbo Coupe/Cobra rotor, so you should give the machine shop the axles so they can make sure that it all fits when they are done.

-Mike S.
 

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Mark,

Just for clarity, that's not what I did. My car has the Motorsport Cobra brake kit that was available in the '90s to upgrade four lug drum brake Foxes to the '93 Cobra R spec brakes, which was the system used on the '94-'95 Cobras, so the rear brakes are '94-'95 Cobra with the 11.65" rotors. It's entirely different than the original setup. So I used the NRC bracket kit for the '94-up Cobra. If you use their brackets, you'll need their set for the Tbird Turbo Coupe.

If I were you, I'd ask Moser if they can drill the rotors to match the axles, since you are sending them the axles anyway.

-Mike S.
 

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MJS those look tight. Just one question, how much more room is there left in the wheel wells. Let's just say you wanted to widen the wheels, what would be a good width. 10"? 9.5"?
Alex,

That depends on what size tire you want to run. I have about 3/4" space between the sidewalls and the inside wheel wells, about the same to the flipped quads, so with the stock Fox-length axles, I wouldn't go for much more than an additional 1/2" to the inside - and I'm thinking you want more than that.

If you look at the pics of the wheels on the SN-95 axles, you can see that they were nearly 3/4" more outboard, making about 1.5" of wheel well space. So if you run those axles, you can most likely get away with an inch, fit a 285 tire, and will probably require moderate fender rolling with a 295 tire. A 315 will require full fender rolling and will be tight no matter what, and needs a minimum 10" rim anyway.

-Mike S.
 

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OK hopefully I can ask a question and not get yelled at,, so here goes..

This thread is LONGGG and a lil confusing: Are there going to be 2 type of offset offered or is this a certain size wins kinda deal?

I would seriously be interesed in

2 - Chrome - 26mm (would allow me to widen)
2 - Chrome - 29.5mm (fits the new spindles & brakes + lowered)
These wheels are available in only one form, which is the 29.5mm offset, 17x8.5 size. Like the originals, there are separate left and right side wheels.

We decided that the 29.5mm offset would work the best on the Fox cars with '94-'95 SN-95 front spindles, and if you look at the pictures of my car, which has these spindles, the front wheels are close to the fenders but the tires do clear, so there is little doubt that this was the best offset to go with to work on the majority of cars.

Jeffo, who is the manufacturer of the wheels, has said that he needs a minimum of 50 orders for chrome alone to do chrome, which probably won't happen, so satin (the original gloss metallic silver finish) is likely what future orders will be finished in.

There are companies that can chrome the wheels, but it's around $400 to have a set done. Still, it's an alternative if 50 chrome orders don't come through and you absolutely have to have chrome.

-MJS
 

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#2 Pre-Order List
------------------------------------

#1 Alexandros---------------------29.5mm--chrome
#2 Alexandros---------------------29.5mm--chrome
#3 Alexandros---------------------29.5mm--chrome
#4 yellow&black95gt--------------26mm-----------------satin
#5 SC351fox----------------------29.5mm--chrome
#6 DeuceBigalow------------------29.5mm--chrome
#7 80Cobra5.0--------------------
#8 Roofer-------------------------
#9 JimmyP------------------------
#10 CGoesChel--------------------
#11 93SVT#4440-----------------29.5mm---------------satin
#12 cheapertokeepher-------------29.5mm......chrome
#13 WhiteGT-2--------------------29.5mm--------------satin
#14 Fobra93-----------------------29.5mm----chrome
#15 93SVT#4440------------------29.5mm--------------satin
#16 thadude ----------------------29.5mm--------------satin
#17 svo90mustang ----------------29.5mm--------------satin

Latest revision, 8 more to go.

-MJS
 

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LOL...I bought the rims and most of the conversion parts and have now got the idea of mortgaging a Viper SRT-10 Coupe and selling the Cobra. So, until this idea passes, I'm keeping them in the boxes.
I once had a similar thought about a mint four year old '96 Viper coupe, blue with white stripes. Then I beat that very car at Firebird, 11.71 to his 11.81, and the thoughts vanished. I drove one and liked the extreme torque, but lets just say the soundtrack didn't live up to the movie - I couldn't get past the agricultural exhaust note blatted out by the V10. They are also wicked expensive to mod, and check the insurance; there was a significant difference.

-MJS
 

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A good part of the fun of these wheels is confusing other '93 Cobra owners (the eight coats of Zaino wax type) at shows. I just did that to a guy with a red one, he saw the brakes and asked me how I got the stock wheels on the car.

I said "What now?"

"Did you convert to four lug studs on the brakes?"

"What do you mean, these are five lug wheels, have been since I bought the car new."

"WHAT???!!! Mine are four lug, and I have smaller brakes! Are you sure that those are five lug?"

(I remove a front cap) "Holy Hell!"

"Are you sure yours are four lug?"

"Well, yes I am."

"Perhaps you didn't order the optional "R-605 Performance Brake Package" (made that up on the spot) that gave you the Cobra R brakes."

"You could get that?"

"Sure, it's on the window sticker. $750 option, if I recall correctly."

"No s**t."

As I was BS'ing this guy, my buddy who was with me had to walk away a few times so he wouldn't die laughing and blow my story. I finally told him the truth, he looked at me funny, then looked a little pissed, then smiled and said "Youuuuu..... had me going there! Man, that's rich! Nice job, though, on the brakes. I told him about this thread, but he didn't seem interested in getting a set, because going home and spreading on another two coats of Zaino was probably just as fascinating to him, not to mention less expensive. Nice enough guy, but you can tell almost immediately if the guy you are talking to is a real DIY'er car guy or just some dude that bought a 25K mile Cobra off of eBay and started flinging car care products at it. Not that there's anything wrong with that, we all get something a little different out of the hobby.

-MJS
 

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I have the North Race Car brackets, fox length axles, and 10th anniversary calipers/rotors. What's the largest tire that will fit out back and will is tuck within the fender? From the pics those who have the sn95 axles have thier wheels right at the edge of the fender.
That pic was before I installed the NRC brackets and Ranger axles. Now those 275s tuck nicely within the stock lips. I had to flip the quads, but that was it. I wouldn't go anything wider than a 275 on an 8.5" rim anyway.

-MJS
 

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It's also largely dependant on the tire and sidewall design, which varies a bunch from brand to brand. I've seen 275s on 8" rims that hardly bulged at all, and I've seen 245s on 9 inch rims that looked perfectly natural. My 275/40Goodyear Eagle F1s looked about the same on the 9 inch Cobra Rs as they do on the 8.5 inch replicas, and from most angles they don't appear to bulge at all. No problems in handling, contact area, or wear; and I've put around 1,000 miles on the car thus far with this combo.

-MJS
 

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What you got there was a lucky find. There were a couple of sets from the first batch order that were never paid for, so they put them on ebay to move them out. I don't think they have any more sets left, but it might be worth a call.

-MJS
 

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I'm sorry to see this second order fizzle. I'm also amazed that these wheels are not more popular, it would seem that the MN12 Thunderbird guys would like to use sets on their Super Coupes with the Cobra disc/ 5 on 4.5" bolt circle conversions, because they are what was supposed to be on those cars way back in the day. They'd look great on Rangers, Crown Vics, SVOs, slicked up early Mustang fastbacks, even Susie's V6 convertible. Maybe they just aren't well enough marketed, because you know 24 sets couldn't possibly be that big a deal nationwide.

-MJS
 

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I may get the red low mileage one on eBay. To complete all 3 colors of the Mustang Cobra's. hell yeah. !

My stopping bid going to be 23,500, do you think it worth more?
It has less than 4,000 miles on it, what do you guys think? is it worth more?
Better yet would you pay more?
If you will pay $23,500, you will pay $24,000, so I'd make that my high bid. It's a nice car, and the guy knows what he's doing with the flashy ad and nice photography. I doubt if it'll go higher than that in this market, but you never know. Low mileage, exceptional stock examples of that car seem to hold high value regardless.

-MJS
 

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Anyone want to split an order with me? I got a half order the first time around, may as well make it complete. If Jeffo can confirm that the new batch will be the exact same shade as the original batch, I'm down for two - one left and one right.

-MJS
 

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The plastic tool broke the second time I tried to use it, instant replay for the next two tools I tried. So I keep a small flat blade screwdriver in the glovebox with a dulled tip. Best way to remove the cap is to tap the screw driver into the slot toward the center of the wheel, so the wedge part pops the cap loose. You do put minor scratches in the wheel, but they are under the cap so they are hidden.

-MJS
 
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