Dodge Caravan Rear axle on GM conversion

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Dodge Caravan Rear axle on GM conversion

Unread postby glennlucky » Thu Dec 22, 2016 9:57 am

Hi everyone,
I was at the salvage yard the other day looking at vehicles with solid rear axles. The rear axle of a 2005 Dodge Caravan caught my attention because I noticed that it had disc brakes and ABS.
I went home and did some research and found the the center bore of the caravan hub is only 1/16" larger than the GM wheels I plan to use which can be easily turned down to the required diameter. The wheel pattern is 5X115 for the GM wheels and 5X114.3 for the Caravan. There is a company that sells wheel lug inserts that can be used on the wheels after the lug holes have been bored which will allow them to be used on both front and rear, so only one spare tire would be required. The axle on the caravan I think is narrower (based on vehicle width), but it would not be a problem to cut and widen it. The gross vehicle weight of the Caravan is a little less, but not enough to worry about.
I've done some reading on the subject on this forum and other websites. I looking forward to hear your thoughts and advise.
Thanks
Glenn
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Re: Dodge Caravan Rear axle on GM conversion

Unread postby hasben » Thu Dec 22, 2016 7:45 pm

I'm always interested in how other LS owners are addressing the rear axle compatibility issue that comes along with a conversion. I purchased a set of Ziggy's wheel adapters and have been very satisfied with the results. My original drum brakes are in very good condition and work just fine. Disk brakes would be nice but if after all the necessary modification and then to still need wheel adapters I'm wondering if it's worth the trouble. Also, does the Dodge axle have enough drop?
Hasben '89 LS/'98 Buick 3800
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Re: Dodge Caravan Rear axle on GM conversion

Unread postby glennlucky » Fri Dec 23, 2016 6:25 am

I've just started looking into it and don't have all the information. I did see pictures on the internet where someone did a GM 3.8L conversion and used a Dodge Caravan axle with drum brakes. Not sure if he used adapters or just bought wheels that fit the rear. What I'm thinking is that I could do the same thing, but adapt the spare to work on both front and rear by modifying it with lug hole adapters.
I do like the idea of using the adapters that Ziggy builds, which makes the conversion simpler, but I like the idea of having disc brakes and ABS/traction control. Another reason for using the Dodge axle is that I can easily get parts if I should need them.
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Re: Dodge Caravan Rear axle on GM conversion

Unread postby djmoyer » Sat Dec 24, 2016 12:26 pm

If you look at the original axle, the stubs are removable. They can be pushed in toward the center. I had a set of new ones made for my conversion to use an LHS rear rotor and welded the LHS brake mount adapter to the Lesharo axle.

My conversion is an on again, off again project. I will try to get pics at some point.
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Re: Dodge Caravan Rear axle on GM conversion

Unread postby glennlucky » Sat Dec 24, 2016 7:51 pm

I would love to see those pictures. Is your conversion a GM or Chrysler?
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