Solid Axle Steering Set Ups [Archive] - Gasser HotRods

: Solid Axle Steering Set Ups



Str8axle
01-05-2011, 10:43 AM
I'll roll the dice here and start this off. Let's see pix of solid axle steering set ups, and discuss the do's and don'ts of setting one up. I'd like this to be a technical thread of sorts, so that someone who is considering installing or having issues with thier currant set up, can get some REAL information, ask REAL questions, and get REAL answers.

Here's the run down of what I have done on mine so far. In my 55 Chev I installed a 59 Chev truck axle, hung with 6" lift springs for a CJ5. Frame is stock (uncut) and retains the stock steering box. I took the lefthand steering arm from the 55/57 car spindle, and installed it on the right hand spindle of my axle at the top facing aft. I am now able to run my draglink from the stock pitman arm to that steering arm and keep it almost horizontal. Actually, with engine/trans and front end mounted, the draglink IS horizontal. The angle bar with the holes in the pix is the mock up draglink that I used to get a measurement for the real one and check for oilpan clearance.

mt94ss
01-05-2011, 02:17 PM
Good idea. I'll get some shots of mine together to add to the options on setup.

Later,

Mike

mt94ss
01-06-2011, 01:43 AM
Here's a shot of mine. I used a speedway kit but modified it. The 48" axle was too narrow, so I had a local rod shop make me a wider one. I did the cross steer using the stock box with the pitman arm fitted with a bolt and heim. I added a panhard bar from the axle to the frame parallel to the steering linkage. The alignment guy said that this was how he did most of his straight axle conversions with no problems.

The first shot is my buddy Chris's front end that the rod shop did for him. It's a Chevy truck axle. I used his for my conversion (the second shot). The last is Chris's car.

Later,

Mike

ProMetalShop
01-06-2011, 07:06 AM
Hi guys
Thanks for the great post, and the photo's. With the risk of sounding like a smartie :D :D I would like to address this as a question. I noticed in your photo's Mike you are running a panhard. Have ya thought of running a wishbone instead ? Reason I ask , threw its suspension travel the p-bar creates an ark causing a sudden jolt to the side. The wish bone has a smooth sliding activity which eliminates this and creates a smoother travel. However to reduce the ark of the p-bar, the bar (could) start off parallel to the axle creating minimal ark.... I run the same setup on (wishbone) all my rear suspension, unless a customer options for the panhard bar.

Str8axle
01-06-2011, 09:23 AM
I agree. That is why I wanted my draglink as close to level as possible. Heavy draglink angle = bad bump steer. Unless of course, your suspension is very stiff and only travels an inch.

Sedan
01-10-2011, 03:07 AM
I'll throw my 2 cents in. My 57 is stubbed with a new home built 2X4 frame. The axle is a 57 chevy truck axle with model A ford springs. The steering box is a 525 box from a camaro with a 57 power steering pitman arm. The cross link is a 57 tie rod adjuster sleve cut in half and welded into a piece of DOM tubing and using the 57 tie rod ends. The steering arm on top of the left wheel is from the original 57 steering. It all seems to be working out very nice. Don't give me any grief about the front spring mounts. That was just temporary during mock up.
Rick

http://www.gasserhotrods.com/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=396&d=1294614310
http://www.gasserhotrods.com/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=393&d=1294614290
http://www.gasserhotrods.com/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=394&d=1294614295

Marks63PontiacGasser
01-14-2011, 06:32 PM
Mike I was wondering about the front panhard bar as well? Have you driven it much to see how it reacts? I was think of one also but trying to make it as long as possible.

Ray, I am using a '57 chevy front axle. Did you drillout the round head joint ends or how did you remove them? I'm wondering how to get mine out in case I use the old arms on mine. Thanks for any help. mark L

Str8axle
01-14-2011, 10:03 PM
Mark, if you're referring to the truck steering arms, I lightly ground the swaged end and with a hammer and a drift pressed the ball studs out. LMC Truck has a nice conversion tie rod for the truck axle. As for the car steering arm, nothing had to be done as they use a conventional tie rod end.

mt94ss
01-16-2011, 01:06 PM
Hi guys
Thanks for the great post, and the photo's. With the risk of sounding like a smartie :D :D I would like to address this as a question. I noticed in your photo's Mike you are running a panhard. Have ya thought of running a wishbone instead ? Reason I ask , threw its suspension travel the p-bar creates an ark causing a sudden jolt to the side. The wish bone has a smooth sliding activity which eliminates this and creates a smoother travel. However to reduce the ark of the p-bar, the bar (could) start off parallel to the axle creating minimal ark.... I run the same setup on (wishbone) all my rear suspension, unless a customer options for the panhard bar.

Steve, I am thinking of changing the steering link to the upper mount on the pass. spindle. I fitted the stock '55 arm with some spacers to get the link almost exactly parallel to the axle. The question is: is it safe to run with spacers and grade 8 bolts or should I try to heat the arm and bend it up a couple inches? I've got it mocked up in the photo below.

I will have to address the panhard, but how would a wishbone work on leafs? How about a anti-sway bar? Mine is more street than race so I will have to do corners....

mt94ss
01-17-2011, 12:57 AM
OK, so I did it today. I had my daughter help me make a jig and I torched the arm! It came out great. It didn't need any shims to clear the spring - and it clears lock to lock with room to spare. It's about a 1/4" from the oil pan - might have to put a small dimple there. The horizontal drop (from the pitman arm to the steering arm) is about 3/4" over three feet. It does go from front to back about three inches from the arm to the pitman. Not sure how much of an issue this is on a cross steer car.

I'll need some heavy 7/16" x 1" spacers and the grade 8 bolts, but all else looks fine. The panhard bar will go - not sure if I'll replace it or do something else.

Later

Mike

Str8axle
01-17-2011, 08:36 AM
Mike, are your springs perfectly parallel to eack other? If so, you're gonna need a bar of some sort. If they're closer together at the front like the factory designed the early trucks, there should be little to no need for a panhard bar. And with those short shackles of yours, you should be fine. Hope this helps. BTW, the pics of your new set-up made me smile. Looks safer already. Nice work!

Sedan
01-18-2011, 04:44 PM
Just a suggestion. Your panhard bar should be at the same angle as the cross link for the steering. Just look at any modern model A or 32 ford hot rod frame with a straight axle and cross steer. You'll see what I mean.

mt94ss
01-18-2011, 09:33 PM
Just a suggestion. Your panhard bar should be at the same angle as the cross link for the steering. Just look at any modern model A or 32 ford hot rod frame with a straight axle and cross steer. You'll see what I mean.

Yeah, that's why it's coming out. I'm going to check out the wishbone that Steve was talking about or move the end point of the panhard, or not put anything in there. I'm happy with the steering as it is and glad to keep the original box (just rebuilt).

Thanks all,

Mike

1946Austin
02-07-2011, 09:26 PM
Why do you need a panhard bar? None of the factory straight axles used one, so why would you need it just because it's swapped into a gasser? Is it because of worry about the height?
I put a Speedway straight axle under my '46 Austin sedan and I'm not running a panhard up front. Parallel leaf springs keep everything in order, and mine works great.

I had some extreme mods to do to my Speedway axle, as it was the narrowest they sell, and still 6" too wide for the narrow little Austin. I had to cut 6" out of the center, then sleeve the axle with solid stock and weld it back together. Likewise I had to chop the drag link to match and sleeve it also before welding it back. I welded the axle to two pieces of angle iron prior to cutting, so I could maintain the kingpin alignment to each other. Worked slick, and they came right back. Just cut the angle off afterwards and ground the welds smooth where it was tacked.
I also ran into clearance issues in the steering box, so had to locate the box way up front at the end of the frame. That meant the steering all ended up in front of the axle. Checked with several stock setups, and found it wasn't that uncommon to steer in front, so I figured I'd do so. Worked out just fine, and with the kingpin angle set at 7 degrees, the car tracks beautifully, and steers great.

Str8axle
09-26-2011, 09:31 AM
Hey Mike, any new developments in your steering saga?

mt94ss
09-26-2011, 10:29 AM
Nope. Haven't worked on it in a while... been finishing my cousin's 450SL. Just about finished. :D I did the engine/trans/driveshaft, paint, wheels& tires. Polished all the trim. Argh! Can't wait for it to go home.

OpelGasser
09-26-2011, 10:43 AM
Thanks for the pics and info. Hoping to get a "Speedway straight axle kit" under the Opel this Winter. You can "special order" the axle to correct length. Lots of "figuring-out" to do.

Str8axle
09-29-2011, 10:34 PM
Mike, I hear Mercedes mechanics make good money. Wouldn't be you, by any chance?
Car looks sweet. Nice work!

hotrod-steve
01-17-2012, 07:47 PM
I know Im a little late to add to this, but I have not seen anyone mention this. I have had good luck with all my straight axle cars by tilting the king pins back farther than factory specs. This results in a more stable handling ride. Hope this helps anyone with handling problems.

1946Austin
01-17-2012, 08:06 PM
The only thing to consider when tilting the kinpin angle back is the farther you go, the more the tires will want to "flop over" when backing up. I've seen axles set at 10-12 degrees that tracked extremely well going forward, but when backing up and turning the wheel the tires scuffed and almost drug a little. Saw a guy backing up his race car into a grassy area and the tires were actually tearing up the grass as he turned the wheel while reversing. But race cars sometimes run as much as 20 degrees kingpin angle to keep the wheels straight at 300 mph.

Str8axle
01-17-2012, 10:46 PM
I was always taught 7-10 degrees for the street....

dirttoo
02-07-2012, 05:54 PM
It looks like I am going to have trouble with my draglink going right thru my oil pan. I have never been brave enough to heat and bend my pitman arm but I may have to this time. My stock pitman arm seems like a wimpy little arm with an extra hole in it. I found one at a swap meet for a Mustang that looks stronger but it only goes on the splines about half way. Any advice?

Judd
02-07-2012, 07:37 PM
What motor and pan are you using?

dirttoo
02-07-2012, 07:50 PM
Small block chevy and a cast aluminum Cal Custom pan.

1946Austin
02-07-2012, 08:32 PM
A picture of the setup you have would sure help determine a fix. Is the pitman arm clearing, but the drag link not clearing? Might be possible to space the drag link down a little and not have an issue, but too far and it will lean when the pressure is on the steering.

dirttoo
02-23-2012, 09:34 PM
OK, I was back at it tonite. My wife kicked me out of the house because she was having a "31 bag party". The stock Falcon arm is too wimpy and aims up. The Mustang arm is too short and shaped too much like a "C". That makes it hit the oil filter and leaf spring. I think I need a straight dropped pitman arm. I looked on ebay at the dropped pitman arms and it looks like some of those would work but how do you know if the splined hole is the same? I want to keep going but I am stuck. Thanks

1946Austin
02-24-2012, 10:48 AM
What steering box, and is it permanently mounted yet? I tried everything I could to mount my box with arm behind the axle, but finally gave in and mounted it forward of the axle, then unbolted my steering tie rod and brackets to move them to the leading side. Worked great, and avoided any pan interference.

dirttoo
02-24-2012, 12:58 PM
Stock Falcon box, stock location due to the steering column and the box are all one piece. Stock location is behind the axle. Speaking of pan interference, How much clearance do I need? It's a sbc with a rear sump and the tie rod passes under the sump. There is about 3" clearance. Is that enough? Online research showed the steering box spline is 1-1/8" 36spline and that is the same as '80 to '97 Ford trucks. I will have to check the salvage yard.

1946Austin
02-24-2012, 07:17 PM
3" should be plenty of clearance. I can't imagine it would hit the pan. My column was solid to the box originally too. I chopped off the column from the stock box, then pulled the column and took my portaband saw and cut back the outter column about 5". Installed a bearing in the end to keep it centered and then made up shaft and U joints to adapt it to the Corvair box. Worked out great, and I kept my old banjo wheel that way!

oleskoolze 52
01-30-2013, 05:43 PM
love this thread, i want to do my 52 chevy in the future and all the info im gathering is good.
defenatly more pics would be great. if any one has done this model and could do a detailed report with pics it would be great.
i have a 59 apache axle with springs im hoping to use, and am hopeing to use my car hubs etc or change to discs..... info please......

ProMetalShop
01-30-2013, 09:14 PM
Hey Oleskoolze, Welcome Aboard. I'm sure you will find quite a bit of information here on Gassers. Drop in to member introduction thread and say hello ! ! Here's the link. http://www.gasserhotrods.com/forum/forumdisplay.php?7-Welcome-to-all-new-Members-Check-in-here-to-say-Hello

Tell us a bit about yourself and what you plan to build ...... Thanks for joining. :)

1946Austin
01-31-2013, 11:28 AM
Welcome to the forum Oleskoolze! The Chevy truck axle is an excellent choice and lots of aftermarket support for them to convert to 5 lug drums or discs. Speedway has some good choices at reasonable prices to do either.
Your '52 is not cross steer if I remember correctly, so it would probably be best to change to a later steering box like the 2nd gen Camaro, or 3rd gen Nova, or Vega boxes. Cross steer will make it steer nicer, and then you can add a bracket to the truck axle on the pass. side top to fit the drag link from the new box.
The hat channel type frame should work fine to mount spring perches, but make sure you build your mounts to retain a positive kingpin angle around 7-8 degrees. I beam axles can be trickier to get the proper angle, as they can't rotate in the spring perch, but they do make spring plate wedges to adjust the angle, if needed.
Hope this helps some. Start a build thread with pics, and we can help you as you go if needed.

oleskoolze 52
02-06-2013, 06:34 PM
hi again,
i wont be starting on 52 until later in the year, maybe next as im hopeing to build a new garrage this year with extension above and im been lucky to be busy in work,
things are still a little slow over here in the u/k, and weather is not so great so garrage would be great.
i will take pics and post when i start as im really kean to keep the car in a road worthy state. [ most parts are hopefully sourced from seconds to keep costs down ]
glad i came across this site as it seems to be full of usefull info & helpfull members.
cath up with you soon.
keep pics and info flowing, good luck to u all

1946Austin
02-06-2013, 07:31 PM
Thanks for joining and posting! Hope to see more on your '52 soon!

oleskoolze 52
02-16-2013, 06:08 PM
hi fanx all for welcoming me
do the 52 hubs fit the 59 6 lug stub axles or are they totally different.
bear with me as im not used to using computers, to modern for me , but brilliant

1946Austin
02-18-2013, 11:51 AM
'49-'54 Chevy drums will bolt right on in place of '55-'59 truck six lug drums.

oleskoolze 52
02-20-2013, 05:27 PM
fanx again for info.
what steering arms and drag links are best to use or do i make my own,
also is the vega box ok to use or is the car a bit on the heavy side
cheers again:cool:

oleskoolze 52
02-20-2013, 05:33 PM
fanx again for any help and advise you lot give.
its a little harder over here to find info. some people over my end dont like passing their experience on. i say the more we help, the more we keep our obsession with
our time past vehicles alive and keep the younger ones interested as well.
back soon

1946Austin
02-21-2013, 11:35 AM
I would measure the distance between the top two bolts on the backing plate, then measure the stock brackets to see if they might be useable. If they are the same spacing, then they can be used. Most likely it will require a couple spacers and longer bolts to get past the kingpin area and clear.
If the spacing isn't right, then Speedway sells brackets in various hole spacing, or you might look at local wrecking yards for something factory that has the spacing your donor axle uses. Another lower bracket as used on your tierod can be purchased and flipped over to bolt to the top bolts also, if you can find another scrap axle to get it from.

oleskoolze 52
02-25-2013, 05:06 PM
just ordered some steering brackets from Bobs Hot Rod Parts from ur side of the pond, they were a reasonable price, i wouldnt save any money this side sourcing them.
just waiting for a vega box to come along now.
new front screen and rear screen is in the 67 impala now.
be glad when i start the gasser though

Str8axle
02-26-2013, 03:17 PM
Tri-5 Chevy car steering arms will work. You'll just have to space them past the kingpin as stated by Val. You'll only need one. Which one, depends on whether your draglink is in front or behind the axle.

And Welcome Aboard BTW!!

oleskoolze 52
02-26-2013, 03:28 PM
fanx again.
i dont know if it matters, or is it just a clearence issue as to which is the best place for the drag link, front or back,
i will probbably have shackles at front,
i will keep looking at other peoples prefference.
if any one has done a 52 chev or similar , pics or break down of parts etc would be great.
everyones info has already impressed me,
not sure wever to cut off front or leave origanal cross member in just in case i ever want to go back, but i cant see me doing that once ive done the gasser route.
decisions . decisions,

1946Austin
02-27-2013, 11:23 AM
I'm pretty sure your crossmember is a bolt in, so no need to cut it off. You can also make a lighter crossmember to bolt into the same holes and drop below the pan if you want it to be able to return to stock ever.
Should look like this and bolt in with I think 8 bolts:
http://i8.photobucket.com/albums/a16/oldchoolauto/Chevy%20Bomb%20Parts/parts/100_5731.jpg

oleskoolze 52
02-27-2013, 05:02 PM
fanx again.
will do that, make new cross member and bolt in, might extend front rails a touch & weld a round molly tube to front to stiffen things up.
i alresdy run home made fender well headers uncorked around town, but want to make srainless ones later if not to pricey.

ol blue
02-27-2013, 09:33 PM
http://i1282.photobucket.com/albums/a522/millergke/cordova2071_zpsacf51125.jpg

This car has one of the cleanest looking front end setups I've seen. It has front cross steer and I think the owner told me it had an early 60's Chevy pickup steering box mounted on the outside of the frame rail. He said it drove pretty good but admitted he hadn't driven it that much (trailer queen). Sorry about the small pic.

1946Austin
02-28-2013, 11:37 AM
Wish it was larger, as it looks like a very nice car!

ol blue
02-28-2013, 09:09 PM
I found a little better picture.http://i1282.photobucket.com/albums/a522/millergke/P50505011_zpsb847a558.jpg

1946Austin
02-28-2013, 11:41 PM
Wow! I didn't even realise it was a fastback in the first pick! That's even better!

oleskoolze 52
03-08-2013, 05:16 PM
hi can anyone tell me, do the third members from the early 9" with round back & dimples fit the later 9" with the promenant hump in the rear,
some one over here got a few & i would like one as a spare member to have a set of gears for track days,
dont want to waste my money if there not a swap in for my humped rear
cheers

1946Austin
03-08-2013, 10:28 PM
hi can anyone tell me, do the third members from the early 9" with round back & dimples fit the later 9" with the promenant hump in the rear,
some one over here got a few & i would like one as a spare member to have a set of gears for track days,
dont want to waste my money if there not a swap in for my humped rear
cheers

All 9" and 9 3/8" housings accept any 9" third member.

vortechtruck
04-17-2013, 02:46 AM
Hi everyone, You all have posted Q & A's on here that are going to help me alot. I have a '79 GMC short stepside that I am going to go all out for the gasser look. I know I know,,,,a truck???? It just worked out that when I was first building this truck up I was at a swap meet and picked up a pair of '57 fender-well headers. One thing led to another and they fit perfectly in the truck with my 408 c.i.d. sbc. I ran the headers along the firewall and they were too short to come all the way to the bottom of the cab but I put the collectors on backwards and put electric dumps on the end and then ran a 3" muffler/exhaust with a turn down just behind the cab. Then I welded the fenders and hood together and built a tilt front end. I also had the idea to put suicide doors on this thing........If ANYBODY asks any of you to put suicide doors on a '79 truck JUST SAY NO! Anyway (long story short) (too late I know) I broke the engine so while I have it torn down this time around I want to put a straight axle under it. My frame is narrower at the front and since my tilt front clip is built for this narrowing of the frame I was wondering how to hand my springs,, and then I came across this site and I am glad I did. In Mikes first post on here he has pictures of his car and it looks like he welded a 2x4 tube across the frame and mounted his perches to that. Now Mike, please correct me if I am wrong but it looks like your springs mounte just a little inboard of your frame rails, as to mine will be about 1 1/2" to the outboard of the frame rails. I was wondering if this could be done and you answered that for me. I was also afraid that I would have to box in the frame and I see that it looks great on Mikes car. I am not sure what steering I will go with, as the truck the pitman and idler arms are forward of the axle so would reverse the steering on my axle as the steering arm is on the rear. I have a power rack and pinion box and tie rod links and ends from a "82 Nissan nx and are perfect length to eliminate a drag link and tie rod. But I think I might convert it to a single side gear box and use it as the drag link and go ahead and put in the tie rod. What do you guy's think? I also want to move the axle forward about 3" or so. Don't think it looks quite right as far back as it is now.

Thanks all...

Jim

ProMetalShop
04-17-2013, 05:12 AM
Hi Jim, welcome to Gasser Hot Rods. :) you certainly have a very different gasser in the makings. I'm sure all your questions will get answered here along with suggestions. So are you considering the rack or are you looking to go with a steering box ? Racks have been used on straight axles, with a slip shaft. Can't wait to see pictures of your project in the works. :)

1946Austin
04-17-2013, 11:35 AM
Welcome to Gasserhotrods Jim! If you can reuse the current box and cross steer in front of the axle, it will work just fine. You don't have to have your drag link from the box on the same side as your tierod is. I am doing the same thing presently on my Falcon project, and installed the box up front of the axle. My box had the pitman arm facing forward, so I had to turn it 180 degrees and remove the index spline to reinstall the arm facing rearward. I'm putting a steering arm on the top side of the backing plate to attaach the draglink from the pitman arm.
Some people are lucky enough to have all 4 spring perches directly under the frame, which makes fabbing mounts easier, but it's certainly no deal breaker if they aren't under the frame. Mine all ended up outside the frame, and it just required building boxed and gusseted perches to get it to fit.
Here's a pic of my front mount steering box with reversed pitman arm.
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v691/marlinguy/Mikes69/Falcon%20build/DSCF3709.jpg (http://smg.photobucket.com/user/marlinguy/media/Mikes69/Falcon%20build/DSCF3709.jpg.html)

Marks63PontiacGasser
04-17-2013, 11:37 AM
Hey I like it. I think it's a great platform for a gasser build. You are talking about moving the front axle 3 inches forward. Each inch really affects the look so I would mount at least one fender, position the axle/wheels and take a look. Then move it where you like the look. Just a heads before you weld everything in. I like the suicide doors. It's a great touch, although it sounds like you'll never do that again, LOL.

MArk L

Marks63PontiacGasser
04-17-2013, 11:44 AM
Same here. I mounted the box and drag link across the fornt of the axle and used the original '57 chevy rear tie rod location. The original tie rod location and the arms helped to keep the original Acklerman affect for steering.

http://i601.photobucket.com/albums/tt97/marks73turbota/Frontsteeringsystem002.jpg

MArk L

1946Austin
04-17-2013, 04:27 PM
Hey I like it. I think it's a great platform for a gasser build. You are talking about moving the front axle 3 inches forward. Each inch really affects the look so I would mount at least one fender, position the axle/wheels and take a look. Then move it where you like the look. Just a heads before you weld everything in. I like the suicide doors. It's a great touch, although it sounds like you'll never do that again, LOL.

MArk L

Excellent advice Mark! I planned to move the axle 1.5"-2" forward on the Falcon, but once I hung a fender with it clamped in place I didn't care for the look. By the time I moved it to a place it looked good, I was only .5" forward from stock. Every vehicle is different, so seeing it with a fender on before doing any welding is a must!

vortechtruck
04-17-2013, 07:32 PM
Thank you Steve, glad to be here....and a thank you to Mark And Vall for the advice. And indeed you are right Mark I will never ever never do suicide doors (at least on a body with such major curves)...lol.... I will mock it up before I do any welding...it's hard enough to grind your welds pretty let alone having to take stuff off and grind grind grind...Love the Austin, and so glad to see a Pontiac. I have had a lot of guy's telling me I should lower this truck, shoot I spent a lot of time getting it back up to stock height. The KID that had it before me flipped the rear spring perches and heated the front coils to get his "Low Rider" look... putz....I am so sick of everyone "slammin'" it to the ground and doing a crappy job of it.... follow thru guy's and chop and channel........Don't get me wrong I have seen some really nice iron out there slammed, chopped, channeled...even some of the rice burners are cool as long as it has 4 wheels and an engine I'm all for it.....2 wheels ???? only if the front ones are off the ground. Thanks again guy's, and am looking forward to sharing with all of you (just hope I can be of help to any of you as you all seem so experienced and knowledgeable)

Jim

Marks63PontiacGasser
04-17-2013, 09:35 PM
I used to say that a man is dead once he stops dreaming. Now I'm adding--a man is dead once he stops learning. Our collective group has a lot of experience but we are still dreaming and we are still learning. If you're here and as crazy as the rest of us then you WILL have something to share. You just may not know it yet, LOL.
Like the old saying goes. "A stranger is just a friend you haven't met yet". We've got lots more "friends" out there that we just haven't met yet. Jim, you are no longer a stranger. Glad you joined in.
Forgot to add. The later year pickups are too wide and tall to just slam. I saw a completely slammed, chopped and channeled '85 Chevy pickup one time and it looked outstanding. Wide and low like a skate board. It really transforms the look of the truck. He was running a tunnel ram so the motor and induction sat up much farther thru the hood than stock body. The only thing that would have made it better would have been a full blower set up.
Mark L

vortechtruck
04-17-2013, 10:06 PM
Right on Mark. And yes I should fit in "Roses are red, Violets are blue, I'm SCHIZOPHRENIC and so am I" And I will only be dead when they pry my right off the gas......I keep dreaming and I keep learning and you just taught me that..thanks.

I am really glad to see someone else make the observation on the modern trucks. I have seen ones like mine dropped down and it looks like a big top hat going down the road....God said he would cover the earth with things that crawl and scream, not sure what is crawlin, cause they are all behind me and the screaming he left to GMC super chargers....lol Some day I will be one of the screamers when the budget affords....although 4 Idu-48 down draft webers with stacks sure look nice...Hilborn ok set me up... geez so many to chose from so little time.

how far along are you on your Pontie? Would love to see some photo's or vid's Any posted? I have some of my truck on streetfire.net under vortechtruck.....

Laters
Jim

vortechtruck
05-05-2013, 04:48 PM
Hello everyone,
Thanks for all the input. I am going to run this with the tie rod behind and draglink in front. My spindle arms are cast as one piece on the rear, lower side of the king pins. If I have measured right (4 times at least so I do not end up with pre cut extra parts) my drag link will work with my stock box if I run it to the front side of the axle, but I will need to be above the king pins. Do any of you know if this will be a problem with the steering aspects as it will be shorter due to caster angle? I am thinking that the spindle arm will need to be a bit longer than the on cast into the spindle... am I just sucking wind or blowing smoke?

Thanks
Jim

1946Austin
05-05-2013, 05:23 PM
The arm for the draglink or steering box can be different length than the arm for the tierod, and it wont have any effect on the tierod or steering. The centerline to end length on pitman arm and backing plate arm will have effect on how hard it steers if the two are drastically different in length. A shorter pitman arm will allow the car to trun with less effort, but will take more wheel turns, and a shorter backing plate arm will require more effort. Generally I try to keep the two arms on each end of the drag link about the same length.
Your setup will be the same as my Falcon's with tierod behind, and drag link in front. As mentioned before, keeping the same tierod setup will nopt change the angles, and a slightly longer backing plate arm will increase felt effort, but not much unless it was a big difference.

vortechtruck
05-05-2013, 11:13 PM
Thanks Vall, I knew I was in the right place to ask these questions. Going back and looking at your pict's I see a lot of similarity in your set up and what mine should look like. And after reading your ans. here I see that it does not matter on the caster angle as the pivot point on the kingpins is the pivot point of the kingpins no matter up, down, side to side, pivot point is pivot point. Hows that for a mouth full of points....lol A point in every direction is like having no point at all.
How is the falcon coming along? anything new yet? Is that a small block Ford I see?
Anyway thanks again and keep 'er between the lines.....
Jim

1946Austin
06-05-2013, 10:28 AM
How is the falcon coming along? anything new yet? Is that a small block Ford I see?
Anyway thanks again and keep 'er between the lines.....
Jim

SBF?? No, that's a 464 BBC in the Falcon! :)
http://www.gasserhotrods.com/forum/showthread.php?1072-63-Falcon-Futura-Gasser

CGkidd
09-16-2013, 01:40 AM
I am running a model A front suspension on my 50 stude build. Question I have is to get the pin inclination I wanted My spring is slightly angled forward. I know I could modify my crossmember and use adjustable spring mounts to be able to get what I am looking for, but that might move the wheels farther back in the wheel wells than I want. I am actually second guessing on if I want to run the A leaf set up or go to parallel springs and a tube axle on the front. What do you guys think?

ProMetalShop
09-16-2013, 07:51 AM
I like the buggy spring in the small cars and trucks, and mostly when used on a normal stance hot rod. But I am a real fan of the parallel spring in full bodied gasser cars and trucks. But that's just my particular taste. :)

1946Austin
09-16-2013, 11:02 AM
I like both, and whenever I see a full body car with a transverse spring axle, I really like it. I do know that full body cars require some extra work to stabilize the weight of the chassis and body when using a transverse spring setup. Some people end up adding coil over shocks to eliminate body roll, and others even go to air shocks to adjust the body roll out of this setup. I know of a local guy who has a '68 GTO gasser that runs 170mph in the 1/4 with a transverse spring, but had to go to air shocks to stabilize it at that speed.
I think you can buy shims in various degrees to adjust the spring angle and achieve kingpin inclination you need. If you angle it forward it will increase the wheelbase, but I don't know if it will be so much as to require a new mounting location? If it does need to move that much to get proper 5-9 degrees of inclination, it might be better to cut the crossmember loose and tack it back in at the correct angle, instead of using a shim wedge.

CGkidd
09-16-2013, 11:03 PM
What I am curious is if with the pin inclination I have about 9deg is if I might cause binding on the spring. Thinking about getting some adjustable spring perches and redoing mu spring so it is more straight up and down. I just worry about creating a failure point.

1946Austin
09-17-2013, 10:22 AM
Nine degrees is getting near the limit of inclination, but I don't think you'll have spring bind. You will see tire scrub when backing up with steeper angles, but it will help it run straight better going forward. I have 10 degrees on my Austin with parallel springs, and I can feel the resistance on my tires when backing up slowly, and it gets higher resistance as I turn the wheels.
Not sure I'd change anything with the angles if you don't have weight on the car yet. Once it's weighted the angle will be less, and might fall right into the 7-8 degree range.

Promotive
10-23-2013, 05:33 PM
This is a great thread. I am currently lining up the parts to build a 59 Vette. I have access to either a 48-54 Chev axle or the 55-59 axle. Which way should I go? I want to run disc brakes. What spring choice would be the best. I can do all the fab work, just not sure what parts will work best.

mt94ss
10-23-2013, 11:37 PM
The problem on a Vette is width of the front axle. A 55-59 axle is 61"-62" hub to hub. Might check an early Chevy Van or Econoline, they might be narrower. A Speedway kit would be perfect because you can get them in any width so fitting to your Vette would be easy-peasy.

I think the frame is OK for parallel leafs. I have seen transverse straight axle Vettes and they look cool! The problem with the pre-55 truck axles is that the springs are not parallel, they narrow at the front.

Have you got the Vette yet? Start a thread so we can help there and keep all the specific tech there for others to see/use.

Mike

1946Austin
10-24-2013, 11:15 AM
The '48-'54 Chevy truck is the narrowest, and '55-'59 about 1"-1.5" wider. The Chevy and Ford van axles are even wider than any of the 50's Chevy trucks. Need to measure your current width, and then decide which one gives you the width you need. Speedway sells disc brake kits for all the 50's Chevy truck spindles, so easy to convert to disc on them.

OpelGasser
10-25-2013, 08:08 AM
SPEEDWAY does make it easier for a "Gasset Guy" to get what is needed for a straight axle conversion, replacement or upgrade. Complete kits, brake setups, leaf springs & ALL necessary hardware are readily available thru their catalog or on-line.

With the growing popularity of "straight axle/gasser style" cars the prices for "used" straight axle setups have become more expensive.... there is a LOT of junk out there. Also it's interesting how many people I talk to about their car/gasser have chose to use a NEW straight axle rather than a used one.

Just one of the BIG decisions that needs to be "thought-out" & "made".

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1946Austin
10-25-2013, 10:03 AM
I personally would always go for a donor axle over new, but mainly because I haven't had any trouble finding good donor axles complete for under $150. My Speedway axle for the Austin was nearly $900 shipped, and that's a lot of money I could have used elsewhere on my build. They are a great axle kit though, and far simpler to install vs. a factory I beam. The problem I had on the Austin was width, and I chickened out on narrowing a stock I beam. In hindsight I wish I had narrowed one, as I love the I beam looks!
The popular axles like Chevy trucks, and Ford trucks, both have good support, and Speedway sells disc brake kits to convert either, so much easier than what it takes to convert some oddball straight axle spindles to disc brakes.

CGkidd
05-16-2014, 10:12 AM
What would u guys say is best castor for a street strip straight axle set up?

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1946Austin
05-17-2014, 11:55 AM
What would u guys say is best castor for a street strip straight axle set up?

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7 degrees seems to be the optimum caster, but if the car is a short wheelbase car, (under 100") I like a couple more degrees to make it want to go straight. I have 6 degrees in my Falcon, and 9 degrees in the Austin. Both drive great, but the Austin tends to fight the wheel a little when backing up at very low speeds. The tires being turned sharply makes it even worse, but straight back there's no noticeable tire scrubbing.
Nothing will contribute more to "death wobble" than not enough positive caster! But even with the right positive caster, a neutral toe in, or toe out condition can create scary driving conditions too! My neighbor had the straight axle put into his Austin gasser and it was all over the road when he drove it. He asked me to look at it, and I checked caster first. Right on at around 7 degrees. Next I checked toe in and found it to be toe'd out almost 1/2"!!! Adjusted it in between 1/8"-1/4" and it drives perfectly now.

rivieragasser
05-17-2014, 05:34 PM
great topic im in the same boat also.. you said you used cj5 spring are they 1 3/4 wide? et up is from a truck

1946Austin
05-18-2014, 09:19 PM
great topic im in the same boat also.. you said you used cj5 spring are they 1 3/4 wide? et up is from a truck

Me? Or? I didn't use CJ5 springs.

CGkidd
05-28-2014, 03:44 PM
Thanks Vall