It is a term that you have heard a million times. The “full floating” rear axle. Maybe you know what it is and maybe you don’t. No biggie if you do not know what it means, you get to learn right here! This 1936 film from Chevrolet talks about the introduction of the full floating axle for use in their heavy duty trucks that year.
The most important thing to remember here is that the axle has one job and that’s just getting the power from the differential out to the tires. The weight of the vehicle is being supported by the housing, not the axles of themselves. Does not sound like the most revolutionary idea in the world but back then this was the type of stuff that engineers spent long days at the office making.
The illustrations, footage of hard parts, and explanation of exactly how the system works and why it is good is really great here. While there is some Chevrolet cheerleading on the video, the reality is that this is a training and education piece so it concentrates on the engineering way more than the branding. The explanation of how the roller bearings are designed to work, the illustration of the axle swap roadside, etc. All neat stuff.
Sure it was 83 years ago, but the clarity and coolness of this film make it as good (or better) than anything done 3 years ago!