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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Open for constructive feedback:

Objective: I want to maximize my wheel/tire width with my recent mini-tub and leaf spring relocation modification (centered under frame rails)complete. Specifically, I DO NOT want to have a large back space to the inside, rather I want the wheel to have the deepest dish possible to the outside.
I'm told with this mod I can get as much as a 13" tire width underneath measured inflated side wall to side wall.

Goal: I can't get there from here with my original 55 housing. So, either a GM 10 or 12 bolt or Ford 9" modified preferred. What I can't seem to get my hands around is which specific aftermarket housing I need with so many out there being sold. Which direction do I lean...one that came out of a truck or car? Which years, etc. I realize the tube will need to be cut and axles either cut or fabricated specfically for my application.

Input...thanks
 

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First, get your hands on the wheel and tire spreadsheet, that will let you determine what you need to do based on your inputs for tires, wheel backspace, tub width, etc.

That said, I have a Versailles 9" axle with 58.50" across the wheel mounting surfaces. It works out great with the 8.5" x 4.75" backspace wheels and the 275 tires I have. Lots of clearance inside and outside. You may want a little narrower on the axle if you're serious about a deeper dish than I have.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
Rick L

Is this Versailles axle a Ford product? With an 8.5 wheel width what is your tire inflated dim. over the side walls? Yes, my goal is to achieve the deepest dish....look.
 

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Yes, Lincoln Versailles, 1977-1981. It has factory rear discs, and is a true 9". They have been popular for a long time, so they are getting harder to find. The same year Granadas and Monarchs (but not all) can also have this axle, usually with drum brakes.

Other cars/trucks that have a Ford 9" this narrow are 57-59 Ford cars, early Broncos (up to about 77), and certain some early Mustangs. Obviously you are competing with Bronco and Mustang restorers for those.

My tires are 10.8" wide at the widest part. I have room for 13". That would be a 315 or 335 tire.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Rick L

Noted thanks! One last question...how much dish are you showing? I suppose this really depends on style of wheel, etc.
Finally, is it true to say the less back space in a custom wheel is directly proportional to what's showing on the rim face. But, then again what are the trade offs!
 

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If you are going to get a rear end and use it as is then you willhave to fit the wheels to the rear end and car. If you want to narrow a rear end then you can get whatever wheels you want and then cut the rear end to fit the wheels. If you are going to go with narrowing a rear end then you must get the wheels and tires first and put them under the car, then measure between the mounting surfaces to get the total rear end width.

If youa re going to narrow a factory Ford 9 inch then there are a few things that you need to consider. The truck housings usually have thicker 3 1/8 inch axle tubes. The full size car housings are harder to narrow because the tubes are flattened on top for some reason. The housings with the rounded center are weaker, but better looking. The housings with the long tapered center are stronger, but not as pretty and harder to mount ladder bars and 4 link brackets. There are many different 9 inch Ford housings. There are about 4 to 6 different types of housing ends and at least 3 different axle bearings. If you have a 9 inch narrowed for your car you need to find someone who knows what they are doing to put it all together for you.
 

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options

there are several ford 9 in. varietys to choose from I think there is still a page dedicated to explaining the differences. i belive i googled kevins stang and at his site i down loaded like a 10 page article on the differences between the ford nine inch cases, which are most desireable and which are the strongest. theres also another article by a George Nenadovich called how to find and remove 8.5" gm posi carriers, If your not going to throw a boat load of h.p. to it and like the idea of staying 100% chevy the 8.5 should hold its own and probably alot cheaper theese days than the elusive nodular case ford 9"
 

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I think this is what you are after 10" wheel with 3 1/2 inch backspace which is a 6 1/2 inch dish. I don`t think you can get a smaller backspace than this on a 10 inch rim if so it would not be much smaller.
I have 29x12.5 Mickey Thompson Sportsman tyres which are about 13" wide.
I use a 9" diff with thirty one spline Moser axles which is 53" wide and that put`s the wheels right in the middle of a minitub.
If I where you I would try and use a 9" diff with the large bearings as the axles are a bit thicker between the bearing and the axle flange where they are prone to breaking when a wheel with a very deep dish is used.
Also if you get a 9" out of an F100 with 31 spline axles you could allways shorten the axles that diff comes with and redrill to your wheel stud pattern.
I think all 31 spline axles can be shortened where as 28 spline can`t or don`t shorten so good.



 

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If you are going to get a rear end and use it as is then you willhave to fit the wheels to the rear end and car. If you want to narrow a rear end then you can get whatever wheels you want and then cut the rear end to fit the wheels. If you are going to go with narrowing a rear end then you must get the wheels and tires first and put them under the car, then measure between the mounting surfaces to get the total rear end width.

If youa re going to narrow a factory Ford 9 inch then there are a few things that you need to consider. The truck housings usually have thicker 3 1/8 inch axle tubes. The full size car housings are harder to narrow because the tubes are flattened on top for some reason. The housings with the rounded center are weaker, but better looking. The housings with the long tapered center are stronger, but not as pretty and harder to mount ladder bars and 4 link brackets. There are many different 9 inch Ford housings. There are about 4 to 6 different types of housing ends and at least 3 different axle bearings. If you have a 9 inch narrowed for your car you need to find someone who knows what they are doing to put it all together for you.
This is only the tip of the ice berg on difference in 9 inch Furds. I used to buy every one that came into a local scrap yard $20 each. 6 bangers trucks might be 31 spline & V8s 28 spline and dont forget the LIncoln/Camperspecial 9 3/8 that looks like an N case.
 

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cheapest swap out there for a 9 inch is a 57-59 ford car housing, its super narrow. no cutting required, i found mine on craigs. 100$.
 

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Definitely try and find a "big bearing" 9'', preferably truck, or the Versaille or some Granada/Monarchs...all Ford products. Even if you can't find the disc brake Versaille there are aftermarket kits for the "big bearing" axles available at far less expense and work to convert than using the small bearing axles.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
9.5 Ford

What is the general consequences here....Biggest Ford made w/31 spline axles.
Out of a late sixties Lincoln. Not sure what length overall is at this point. Will look at it this weekend. Seller asking 375.00 dols. complete unit w/drums I believe.
Is this unit supportable in todays aftermarket?
 

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Any 9" is supportable. That said, the configuration determines the value.

Likely, the 60s Lincoln has a wide axle, which will need narrowing. I wouldn't give that kind of money for a wide drum brake axle assembly.

Just so we're not confused, the Versailles is not a big car like most Lincolns. In the late 70s, it was the competitor to the Cadillac Seville if you're familiar with them. I don't think there was any Lincoln or Continental branded car that was small in the 60s.

I also wonder whether a 60s Lincoln was ever equipped with 31 spline axles, though I guess they could have been.

That's another whole subject on 9" rears. The Versailles stuff and most others like pickups and 57-59 cars have 28 spline axles. Only the high performance stuff had the 31 spline axles. But a 31 spline 3rd member will bolt right into any Ford 9" housing. Then all you have to come up with is the axles. So there are many combinations and many choices. And many $$$ if you have to have a certain deal.
 

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I wouldn't use a full size car rear end if you are going to narrow one. The axle tubes are flat on top and they have a lot of brackets that have to be cut off and smoothed out. Use a truck housing. They are easy to find and easier to modify. They have the large axle bearings and many of them have 31 spline axles. You never know what you are going to get in a 9 inch. I've seen 302 trucks with 31 spline axles and I've seen 390 trucks with 28 spline axles. The late '60s big Lincolns had the 9 3/8 rear end. You do not want one of those. They look very much like a 9 inch, but there are no parts available for them.
 

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cheapest swap out there for a 9 inch is a 57-59 ford car housing, its super narrow. no cutting required, i found mine on craigs. 100$.
As many of those early 57-59 28 spline axles as I have seen broke I dont see much of an upgrade unless you go with aftermarket axles. Even the later 28 spline stuff is much stronger.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
1956 Sedan Delivery

Could you post a few pictures of the rear wheel/tire set-up? Also, what year housing do you have and is it out of a car or truck, additionally, from your dimensions @ 53" flange to flange you obviously had it narrowed...is this correct?
Lastly, are you running discs with this?
 

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One question I'd ask here is whether the 53" is the bare housing, or is it the width over the wheel mounting surfaces?

Looks like it's probably the former. Most brake/axle packages add around 3" per side, but that definitely varies.
 
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