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Little help with some diff tech...

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  • Little help with some diff tech...

    I ran into a problem and have some questions and maybe some of you all can help.
    The rear suspension is in, welded and mounted. I cut off all the extraneous perches and shock mounts off of the diff. It is a 7 3/4" out of a Ford Ranger.
    Then I noticed something troubling... the yoke for the pinion is not centered.??? It seemed on the old tin hat diff, the pumpkin was off-center so that the yoke would be centered. On this one the pumpkin is off centered as well, but in the wrong direction??


    But it looks to me like the car and the tunnel are centered...

    any advice?
    How do they do it factory, is the driveshaft crooked on Ford Rangers?
    Are the motor and trans offset to one side?

  • #2

    Re: Little help with some diff tech...

    Re: Little help with some diff tech...

    Darn it.
    I knew those two axle shafts where not the same length - I should have told you that.

    I don't know why they do it that way.

    I can meausure the ranger tonight.

    you may be better served getting an axle out of a mustang - the 8.8 should be a dime a dozen out there, and have more ratios and clutched differentials available for them anyhow if you get a '94 or newer they will have disc brakes and 5 lugs if my memory serves me right.
    There's always something new to learn.

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    • #3

      Re: Little help with some diff tech...

      Re: Little help with some diff tech...

      First of all, make sure you have the rear-end right side up. A friend of mine installed one upside down once, and tried for 2days to figure out how he "broke" the transmission :-[. Funny thing, it had 4 reverse gears, and 1 forward. ;D hehehe
      Some of us watching it almost died...I still remember watching him jack the car up, move the levers, start engine, drop clutch...go backward.....hehhehehehhe
      Anyway....

      The centerline of the pinion doesn't "technically" have to be centered compared to the centerline of the engine/trans.
      There is some ability of the U-joints to "allow" for offset. In many cases, the drive-line is intentionally offset to eliminate vibrations that can occur naturally when driveshafts have no "angle".
      If you have the driveshaft clearance, and can get the proper pinion angle, it shouldn't pose much of a problem, unless its an extreme angle.
      Remember, a "normal" driveshaft to trans output shaft angle is between 2 and (depending) 4 or 5 degrees down (racing?), so just do some geometry...and figure the amount of angle relative to centerline of crankshaft/output shaft and pinion. A driveshaft doesn't know if its sideways angle, or up and down.

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      • #4

        Re: Little help with some diff tech...

        Re: Little help with some diff tech...

        Thanks for the input guys (no pun intended: or was it?...), ;)
        the rear was originally mounted under the leaf springs in the Ranger, so, I cut off the old perches and I'm going to mount it right side up :-). The breather tube is a good hint...
        quote: caddyman
        A driveshaft doesn't know if its sideways angle, or up and down.
        quote
        do I have to take this sideways angle into account when setting up the pinion angle?
        The reason I chose the Ranger rear, is its width. The Mustang ones are too wide. The early round body Falcons are quite a bit narrower than Mustangs. The Ranger rear is even a half an inch narrower than the falcon. Narrow equals good :-) cutting and narrowing the rear and buying axles is too expensive for what I'm trying to do. this will be I6 powered, albeit a healthy I6 :-)
        I have to finish cleaning it today, then I got to get some help and mock it up. I still have to make the tranny cross member too. Right now it's being held up by a "precision" 2x4.

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        • #5

          Re: Little help with some diff tech...

          Re: Little help with some diff tech...

          the driveshaft can go "sideways" without any problem, the offset should not cause any problems. But the tunnel in the floor might, if the driveshaft will hit it at full down suspension travel.

          I don't know about rangers, but A body mopars have the engine way over to the passenger side.
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          • #6

            Re: Little help with some diff tech...

            Re: Little help with some diff tech...

            the ranger engines are centered as far as I know I didn't make it to the shop today so I don't have measurements for you....

            I also know older ford trucks had offset diffs like the ranger - something about that offset makes the system work better.

            I recal 7 degrees being a magic number for U joints - no more than that at either end.

            I'm worried about the trans tunnel situation - it will take some mock up time for sure - but it looks like you're damned good at that!

            Good luck with it - if you need some measurements off a ranger axle that has not been cut up - let me know -mine is still under my ranger waiting to be scrapped for the 8.8.
            There's always something new to learn.

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            • #7

              Re: Little help with some diff tech...

              Re: Little help with some diff tech...

              got a ranger at work just looked at it rear is offset to pass side but motor trans looks straight???????? aerostars were offset but the engine is also. should not hurt anything as long as it is not to close to anything at ride height because is not in middle of tunnel

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              • #8

                Re: Little help with some diff tech...

                Re: Little help with some diff tech...

                question 1:

                does anyone know the difference in lengths of the R and L axles?

                question 2:

                could you cut down the axle tube on the long side and use 2 of the short axles and end up with a narrower centered diff?

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                • #9

                  Re: Little help with some diff tech...

                  Re: Little help with some diff tech...

                  i would assume it is close to difference in housing. best thing take them out and measure. not that hard cover bolts diff pin c clips
                  etc no reason you cant cut it if two short axles make length right and center diff amd jig it before weldingso it is straight

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                  • #10

                    Re: Little help with some diff tech...

                    Re: Little help with some diff tech...

                    The axles are diff. because the side gears are not centered on the pinion, you can change lengths of tube and mix rights or lefts (axles) to get what you need for the tubes you use. You can also get a Van axle 31 spline( or any that start bigger) and weld the ends on your tube and get them resplined by a local shop. If you cut and weld the tube it will bend from the heat, use a bar and donuts in the carrier and axle bearing ends to keep it all centered
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                    • #11

                      Re: Little help with some diff tech...

                      Re: Little help with some diff tech...

                      question 1:

                      does anyone know the difference in lengths of the R and L axles?

                      question 2:

                      could you cut down the axle tube on the long side and use 2 of the short axles and end up with a narrower centered diff?
                      On question 2 this was a common practice when guys took Dana 60 rears out of Mopars and put them in other cars.I got one out of a Camaro that had 2 short side B-body axles in it.They just cut the plug welds and shortened the long side tube and ordered another short side axle.
                      Gus

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                      • #12

                        Re: Little help with some diff tech...

                        Re: Little help with some diff tech...

                        I remember reading in one of the mags that the Ranger axles are a cheap upgrade for 4 lug Fox body Stangs. I especially remember that you need two left ones as the right one is shorter. So the left side of your diff is the same as a Stang, but the right is shorter.

                        I don't know if any of this helps.
                        BS'er formally known as Rebeldryver

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                        • #13

                          Re: Little help with some diff tech...

                          Re: Little help with some diff tech...

                          Rebeldryver is right. I remember reading about that too. You could find another Ranger axle and pull the shorter axle and tube and install it on yours. You can also pull it off of an Aerostar axel also. The only difference between the two as where the longer and shorter tube are located. They're on opposite sides on an Areostar axle, but the differential is the same. However, as I'm sure you're already aware, you'll lose 4 inches off of the overall width by doing that. I don't know if that would work into your plans or not.

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                          • #14

                            Re: Little help with some diff tech...

                            Re: Little help with some diff tech...

                            thanks! all good info. my laptop got horked last wed, so it can take a while for me to get these now.

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