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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I'm sure most of you guys have been in the same boat... fun and projects have been put on a back burner while I work on "life" and such. For me, it's been buying a house. I'm on my third house that I've made offers on, etc... not even mentioning all the weekends burned looking at houses, evenings spent checking out homes on Zillow, then Google earth to check the neighborhood... ugh. If everything works out, I'll be closing on this house July 31st.

The 55 has suffered some neglect, but I figured out my vacation is fast approaching and my car is not ready yet! I plan to drive my 55 from Phoenix to Yellowstone the first day or two of August and stay in the area for 10 days. The 39th annual Yellowstone Rod Run is the first weekend of August and that's where I plan to be. What could be better than hot rods and Yellowstone? They say they expect 500-700 cars there.

My original rear end isn't up for the task of handling the new motor and five speed. I called John's 9 inch Factory and ordered wayyyyy more rear end than I need. This will be the last rear end this car will ever need. :) I got lazy/cheap and went with drum brakes. I just don't have the time to start changing my prop valves and such on the brakes to accomodate discs. The proportioning valve is mounted down on the frame and the thought of messing with that turned my stomach.

John's 9 inch Factory are good folks. I got to talk to John himself! He has a couple of trifives so he knows all the details about getting the rear to fit. Lynn helped me get the order in, I called three separate times asking questions about stuff. She was very good to deal with.

I opted for the "round back" rear end housing. It's more of a retro look and it more closely matches the original rear end too. It's about an inch narrower on each side, this combined with custom steel wheels should help with tire changes. I probably should have saved a few bucks and went with the nodular iron Superlight case that is rated up to 600 hp. Instead I opted for the big one that the Comp and Super Comp cars use. Now I can drop the clutch as hard as I want. :D

I had planned on powder coating the housing but I might be welding some stuff to the housing later. I'd like to run a leaf-link suspension as spec'd here:
http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/showthread.php?t=293268&page=2









Oh yeah... and I got another new toy I haven't had time enough to play with either. It's been years since I have used a welder and I've wanted one ever since then. So, here it is- It's a Miller 211 and works with 110v or 220v. It seems fantastic but I've run less than 10 inches of welding with it. :(

 

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Great looking couple of toy's................:tu:tu:tu
Now it's play time.....



Ed :cool:
 

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great story :tu! good luck with the house (old saying: new house, new baby ;)) . good looking rear :)eek: that sounds weird to say to a guy ;):D).
 

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Discussion Starter #6
That looks like a six pack, and buddy type Saturday afternoon job. :tu

I wish! I had a friend show up, but he was just there for moral support. Of course, I didn't have any beer to offer. Maybe that was the problem? :D

I did make some progress this afternoon though. Now I just need to get some larger u-bolts, a new driveshaft and some wheels.



 

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Hey thehazmatguy,,

Nice addition to the ride..looks like it can handle what ever you through at it...:D Do you mind if I ask what did it set you back?

Couldn't tell is she Posi ?

Keep us in the loop as you get it installed..
Congrats..:tu

drew
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Hey thehazmatguy,,

Nice addition to the ride..looks like it can handle what ever you through at it...:D Do you mind if I ask what did it set you back?

Couldn't tell is she Posi ?

Keep us in the loop as you get it installed..
Congrats..:tu

drew
Thanks. I don't mind you asking. I am going to be a little vague though, but that's just because I can't remember the break down of the add-ons and such I got. The flier on the website lists a bunch of prices, but Lynn gave me way better pricing when I called her. My set up cost about $2800. But that was going way overboard with the center section. You could easily trim off hundreds of dollars going other routes. I think the starting price for a rebuilt iron center section with new gears and posi, new housing and new drums was just over $2200. Adding disc brakes would only be an additional $70, so you would be looking at about $2300.

I added:
round back option (fyi - won't fit a Nomad, this was a free option)
31 spline axles (28 or 31 was free, above that it's extra $$)
1 inch shorter per side (free option)
truetrac (better than standard clutch-posi, strongest I could get without going Detroit Locker)
Strange Pro-Nodular Iron case (this was a pretty good jump in price)
brake lines ($200? Ouch. I remember that price!)

Overall I'm pretty pleased with my purchase. Talking to the owner and hearing he had a few trifives really made a difference. Off of the top of his head he knew exactly what back spacing would be required for the wheels with the narrower rear on a trifive, etc. :tu
 

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Thanks. I don't mind you asking. I am going to be a little vague though, but that's just because I can't remember the break down of the add-ons and such I got. The flier on the website lists a bunch of prices, but Lynn gave me way better pricing when I called her. My set up cost about $2800. But that was going way overboard with the center section. You could easily trim off hundreds of dollars going other routes. I think the starting price for a rebuilt iron center section with new gears and posi, new housing and new drums was just over $2200. Adding disc brakes would only be an additional $70, so you would be looking at about $2300.

I added:
round back option (fyi - won't fit a Nomad, this was a free option)
31 spline axles (28 or 31 was free, above that it's extra $$)
1 inch shorter per side (free option)
truetrac (better than standard clutch-posi, strongest I could get without going Detroit Locker)
Strange Pro-Nodular Iron case (this was a pretty good jump in price)
brake lines ($200? Ouch. I remember that price!)

Overall I'm pretty pleased with my purchase. Talking to the owner and hearing he had a few trifives really made a difference. Off of the top of his head he knew exactly what back spacing would be required for the wheels with the narrower rear on a trifive, etc. :tu
Thanks for the break down, at some point down the road, I need to R & R mine as its the original..and I know she was never intended to support a 383, also plan to do a pocket.. mini tub at the time...wider rear tire..better fender side clearance..

Big help for my future..planning Thanks...again :tu

drew
 

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Looks great!!! That's what HECK of a third!!!:tu
I would say you should be able to throw ANYTHING at that set-up!!
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I got pretty close to finishing the rear end install today. It's gone really, really smoothly (knock on wood)

It appears that going one inch narrower per side is going to pay off. I put a couple of different tires on the car to see how they fit. The additional inch per side is making tire changes much easier. The spare tire still fits too.

pics:





The stock 55 chevy emergency brake cable, with some easy mods, seems like it's going to work perfectly with the Ford drum brakes.

1) I used a dremel tool to increase the diameter of the hole for the e-brake cable in the backing plates. It wasn't much, maybe 1/16 of an inch?

2) I used a cutting wheel on the dremel to remove 15 "rings" of the spring for the e-brake cable inside the drum. Stock was way too long, the spring would bind with the self adjuster. My thumb in the picture below is holding another spring out of the way so you can see the e-brake cable spring.

Besides those two minor mods, it seems that the e-brake fits right up to the Ford backing plates. Nice!



 

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Discussion Starter #13
Another update:

After a little digging I found someone to reverse my wheels for me that is local. I had my tires tucked under the car pretty good with the original rear end but the new rear end is an inch shorter on each side. I really needed to do something about my wheels.

I can't believe my luck = the guy reversing my wheels is REALLY giving me deal. I'm sure he is doing it for the challenge, certainly not for the $$$ we talked about. Besides just the low cost of doing the work, he is doing the work fast. He had the first prototype ready in five hours... If I would have mailed the wheels to California to a wheel specialist, my wheels would still be waiting for delivery. This is huge because I'm trying to take the 55 to Yellowstone in two weeks.

BTW - added bonus - this is the first time I have been able to remove and install these tires/wheels with the tires fully inflated. SWEET!

So... here are the pictures.

Original:


First try (wanted to check fit before fully welding)


Here's the prototype on the car:


I tested the prototype under both sides:
 

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nice!

HAZMAT,that looks great!I love the look of a deep dish wheel and that guy who is doing the work seems to know his stuff.
GREG
 

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HAZMAT,that looks great!I love the look of a deep dish wheel and that guy who is doing the work seems to know his stuff.
GREG
That wheel guy is going to make a mint when word get's out about his talent.
They look great...........................:happy0030:
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
That wheel guy is going to make a mint when word get's out about his talent.
They look great...........................:happy0030:

No way... I'm not giving this guys name to anyone! :) He's my secret!

He's obviously an old school machinist and hot rodder. He used a pretty big lathe to cut the centers out of the wheels. He already had a chuck set up with various bolt patterns because he usually works with spoke wheels on model A's and such.

He checked the run out, it's about .020ish on the first wheel. He's already got the center repositioned on the second wheel and it's tacked into place. Next he said he was going to fabricate metal plugs for the valve stem holes and weld them shut so he can drill a new valve stem hole on the "new" outside of the wheel.

He's a neat guy doing some really good work.
 

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There is a company called "Stockton Wheel" who will do this type of work. They said I could send them my stock 5" wide rims and they'd make them 7 or 8" wide (or whatever I'd want). Google them if you're interested.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
There is a company called "Stockton Wheel" who will do this type of work. They said I could send them my stock 5" wide rims and they'd make them 7 or 8" wide (or whatever I'd want). Google them if you're interested.
Stockton Wheel has been around a long time, but has a somewhat hit or miss reputation on the H.A.M.B. Some guys have had great service, some haven't.

http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/showthread.php?t=182382&highlight=stockton+rally

It seems like Rally America has a pretty good reputation.

http://www.rallyamerica.com/

I called them about having a custom set of wheels sent out to me. I was asking about how long it would take, etc. He said that they were currently out of the stock type wheel centers. He didn't try to sell me anything or B.S. a date = that's something I can appreciate. We talked some more, he said I could send him my wheels and he would use my wheels to make a custom set. I thought the pricing was very fair. He quoted $50 per wheel to me for reversing a wheel, with a 3 day turn around.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I'm too tired to type much, so I'll let the pictures do the talking. I got the rear in the car, driveshaft in and the brakes are bleed and working (except e-brake). I drove the car around with my two extra small tires while the newly painted reversed wheels are drying. Little tires = big burn outs... fun!

For each of the three pics below, the old one is on the left and the new replacement is on the right.





 
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