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Seeing a current thread with brake questions reminded me to follow through on looking at converting my rear drum brakes to disc. I found this very informative thread, but need to ask a few questions of my own. I want to convert my 2001 Voyager to rear discs, and it looks like all the previous posts in this thread concern long wheelbase vans. My shorty should be compatible if I grab the parts from a gen 4 GC or T&C from the boneyard, but I'm wondering about the proportioning valve. Looks like the same part number for long and short wheelbase, with no distinction between drum or disc, as listed by ebay sellers, but I wonder if anyone on the forum can verify that. Has anyone converted a short van to rear disc? Does anyone know of any shorty that had factory rear disc brakes? I cant find any mention of any of them equipped that way. Thanks.

2001 Voyager LX, 178,000 miles.
Geezer driver. Bad reflexes or outdated brake design? Everyone seems to be stopping faster than I can these days.
 

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Discussion Starter #82
You might get better response to these questions on the 4th gen forum. I looked here, but couldn't find a reference to a proportioning valve. I'm suspect that you could use the same proportioning valve for short and long wheelbases without too many issues, but I don't know for sure.
 

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The front to rear bias of a swb and lwb will be apples and oranges. The proportioning valve was designed to take into account not just the discrepancy in size and efficiency of the brakes, but also the amount of traction available to the stock tires at various loads and attitudes. The weight on the tire changes how much braking force you can apply before lockup. When you rapidly decelerate the vehicle pitches forward and redistributes traction to the front tires.
It's possible that Chrysler was lazy and put the same proportioning valve in two different vehicles, but ideally it should be specifically designed for the CG, suspension stiffness, weight distribution, and front to rear brake bias of the given vehicle.
 

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Thanks for the input, guys. After more searching I found an ebay site with OEM Mopar parts, listing part number 4877730AF as correct for short or long wheelbase for my year. Yes SE, I think Chrysler did get lazy here. I remember the problems that occurred on my long gone 1984 Voyager. Pebbles got into the valve housing and caused it to allow rear brake lockup. Once I learned how it functioned, I thought that the valve should be specific to wheelbase, vehicle height, etc. But it looks like they managed to make the same part work for both long and short vans, so now its just a matter of matching up the park brake cable, and the brake fluid lines. And finding the time to do the work.

Loved your step by step information in this thread, Leon. Thats why I camped on to this one instead of posting in 4th generation. I expect getting the job done on my 2001 will be pretty much the same operation. Just need to compare some LWB and SWB vans in the junkyard.
 

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Discussion Starter #85
Sounds good, hope you have fun with it, it's actually a pretty easy (and fun) project. The e-brake cables were the biggest PITA. I'm glad you found the step by step useful! Looks like all my pictures are now gone, and I can't edit the post to put them back, but let me know if you want to see any of them.

In my case, I kept the original (disc/drum) prop valve for a while, before getting the more appropriate disc/disc one - and I really did not feel any difference at all. So even if there are some differences, I doubt they'd be significant, especially with ABS which prevents premature wheel lockup (I get that you still want the best balance possible front to rear).
 

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Thanks for the offer of the pictures, but no need to see them. It was the text of your posts that really explained everything. When I get to the salvage yard and compare SWB and LWB vans, I'll be able to see it all. Interesting that you found different valves for disc brake versus drum brake for your van. The valves I saw on line for gen 4 made no distinction between the two. One valve fits all, I guess. My van has four wheel ABS, so I think the conversion should work out OK.
 

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Yea this sounds like a great way to upgrade your brakes...like the idea a lot...all the little things to do to these minis this seems to be one of the better / best / think have to quit reading your posts cause I keep falling in the same mode as you like all the little things to be perfect...people who dont own one of these minis just dont get it...my AWD is still a Ferrari to me...sure you feel the same or you would have never fixed so many little things like your console just finished...satisfaction and useful at the same time///
 

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Discussion Starter #88
have to quit reading your posts cause I keep falling in the same mode as you like all the little things to be perfect...
Haha, sorry to be a bad influence :). You know though, the reality is that at this point, these minis are done depreciating, so you are saving tons of money every month compared to upgrading to something newer. Then throw in the free labor (for those of us doing our own work), and you end up with lots of "play money" like these little projects. I am guessing that ALL of my projects on this forum over the years (HIDs, disc brake conversion, flexplate repair, interior, console, paint job, etc) have added up to less than 4-6 monthly payments on the car I am pondering as a replacement for the mini. Not to mention the lower insurance rates than on a newer car.

I was sitting at a Lexus independent repair shop yesterday waiting for my GS to get aligned, and was listening to the receptionist making phone calls - "your car needs new balljoints, $400, new power steering pump, $900, new control arms, $1250", etc, for a total of $4300, etc - this went on for an hour. And to think, I felt guilty spending money on control arms that I put in myself, total cost $250. Just goes to show you that we sometimes forget just how much money we save doing our own work!
 

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I was sitting at a Lexus independent repair shop yesterday waiting for my GS to get aligned, and was listening to the receptionist making phone calls - "your car needs new balljoints, $400, new power steering pump, $900, new control arms, $1250", etc, for a total of $4300, etc - this went on for an hour. And to think, I felt guilty spending money on control arms that I put in myself, total cost $250. Just goes to show you that we sometimes forget just how much money we save doing our own work!
It's amazing just how much we save (sometimes without realizing it) when we DIY. Case in point, a month ago I had just picked my daughter up from her college in Boston and we were heading down to New York to visit my mother in the hospital; no sooner had I hit the Cruise Control settings on my Accord when the electrical system light illuminated on the dash. A quick check of the manual indicated a charging system failure. Yeesh. We set a course for the closest Honda dealership, informed them we were on the road, and got put to the head of the queue; that was the good news. The bad news came three hours later when I was presented with a bill for a new alternator for $707.99, including a diagnostic charge of $160, a factory new Honda alternator for something like $450, and then installation and taxes making up almost another $200. Geez, a quick check of the Napa Online web site shows their "Premium" remanufactured alternator is $209 and their best "New" alternator is $224. What really made me mad was I *almost* drove the T&C.
 

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It's amazing just how much we save (sometimes without realizing it) when we DIY. Case in point, a month ago I had just picked my daughter up from her college in Boston and we were heading down to New York to visit my mother in the hospital; no sooner had I hit the Cruise Control settings on my Accord when the electrical system light illuminated on the dash. A quick check of the manual indicated a charging system failure. Yeesh. We set a course for the closest Honda dealership, informed them we were on the road, and got put to the head of the queue; that was the good news. The bad news came three hours later when I was presented with a bill for a new alternator for $707.99, including a diagnostic charge of $160, a factory new Honda alternator for something like $450, and then installation and taxes making up almost another $200. Geez, a quick check of the Napa Online web site shows their "Premium" remanufactured alternator is $209 and their best "New" alternator is $224. What really made me mad was I *almost* drove the T&C.
Even better, the alternator failed on my GV last year. I had 4 deep cycle telecom batteries sitting in the back. Wired them up to my amp and drove around for two days without an alternator till I had some free time to look at it.
Took the alternator apart and the brushes were worn out. $0.20 for new brushes online but they had a $5 minimum order and at least two days shipping. So, I talked the local autoparts store into letting me pilfer some brushes from their core pile. Found a similar Denso with brand new brushes in it, soldered them into mine and it's lasted a year so far. Cost me zero dollars, 80% of my labor was just removal and installation of the assembled unit.:cool:
 

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Even better, the alternator failed on my GV last year. I had 4 deep cycle telecom batteries sitting in the back. Wired them up to my amp and drove around for two days without an alternator till I had some free time to look at it.
Took the alternator apart and the brushes were worn out. $0.20 for new brushes online but they had a $5 minimum order and at least two days shipping. So, I talked the local autoparts store into letting me pilfer some brushes from their core pile. Found a similar Denso with brand new brushes in it, soldered them into mine and it's lasted a year so far. Cost me zero dollars, 80% of my labor was just removal and installation of the assembled unit.:cool:
Yeah, "back in the day" I used to rebuild my own starters and alternators, but time being money and all that; I usually buy high quality remanufactured parts these days.
 

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Discussion Starter #93
Wondering if all years of the 4th gen parts will work? 2001 -2007 ? And just the end of axle brake parts?
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Yup, just the adapters, dust shields, and calipers at each end, as well as the e-brake cable. Also not just 4th gen, any 3rd gen AWD will have the same hardware on the back. Wait, don't you already have rear discs on your AWD?
 

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Yup, just the adapters, dust shields, and calipers at each end, as well as the e-brake cable. Also not just 4th gen, any 3rd gen AWD will have the same hardware on the back. Wait, don't you already have rear discs on your AWD?
Yes mine has rear discs...told my friend about the upgrade he may want to do to his daughters 3rd gen...so hes lurking through the posts for the DIY info...
 

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Ah ok then. Let me know if you want me to resurrect any of the pictures.
Your images have been re-linked so they are now displaying in your original posts.
 

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I'm about to start gathering the parts for the front 4th gen brake swap and I'm wondering if any of the gurus know if the 16" wheels from the 98 to 2000 Grand Caravan will fit the 290mm rotors, preferably without spacers?
These are what the factory wheels I was wanting looked like.
 

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It's not so much the rim diameter (some 15" rims will even fit!) as it is the shape of the inside/backside of the rim, to see if it clears the front calipers with brand new rotors and pads loaded into them. I think Lyonkster is running the old 16" snowflake wheels without spacers. I'm running the T&C Limited 15 spoke rims with 5/16" slip-on spacers and longer front studs from a Ford Taurus, on new Timken hubs. I've made previous posts in this thread detailing what I used. I only upgraded the front brakes and suspension, but it sure made a difference. I was able to make the front tires squeak during a hard stop for the first time after the swap. :)
 
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