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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Help with info on an E100 drop axle from a 65 ford van

Ok I am starting to look at buying a front axle for my 56 VIC 2dr HT.

At this point I am scanning for a deal and I want the look of a drop axle. i do not want to go with speedway or other aftermarket options.

One up for sale is a 1965 E100 van axle complete that looks like it might work on my frame and set up,,,, it is 62 1/2 inches mounting surface to surface which seems good for my set up. Spring perches are 34" on center.

Any ideas good or bad? I have been seeing things like f1 axles etc...is the E100 a lighter duty axle? it does have some pretty wide brakes on it...yes I want to stay with drums.

Just getting started thinking about this and if the right axle comes along I'll pick it up.

Probably there will be questions from you guys so here is some of the answers I think you may need in advance.

The car will weigh 3500 lbs (rough estimate)
It will have a big block.
I will want to play hard and do some big wheelies and it may slam down hard so strength is an issue?
I do not have the wheels picked out yet, and I have read in another thread that is best to know up front what wheel I want to run, but I think I am close from some "eyeball engineering" I have done, and also some look-sees at other similar cars. Maybe the wheel choice is a bigger issue than I think at this point???
I want to set it up as if it were a time capsule from the mid sixties.
 

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Tom, I think the E100 is the Econline Van axle. There are a few of us using that setup. In fact I think Vall may have one that he just bought not too long ago. Not sure if it is going under the Falonn or not. I have one under the 38. The 440 Mopar motor is pretty heavy, so it works for that weight. Not sure how it would do getting smacked back down after a wheelie. They were only rated for the straight 6. But were used a lot back in the late 60's for gassers. Hope that helps. The steering arm is a little different because the steering box was in front of the axle.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
maddog3299 - Mike, Thanks, sounds encouraging so far. Yes, the one phone call I made - the guy made reference to the axle coming from an econoline van. I looked at your album,, you took some good pictures,,I was able to see that axle clearly. The holes drilled give it a cool look, although I may not do that.

I would think that rebuild/replacement parts will not be to difficult to come by on that axle, right?

I had noticed the steering ,,,,is there an easy fix for steering the car from the passenger side?..I did see what you did ( in your album) but I do not know if that idea would work for my application.

Hopefully there are aftermarket part(s) to adapt that axle to a set up that fits up to the passenger side for steering?

That pile of parts I put in the first post he is trying to sell for 350.00. What should I pay for it?

Here, I go with all the questions....Gasser info for ROOKIES!! Thanks in advance for the help!!


56 VIC - Tom
 

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Tom, I have the same axle under my Falcon. I bought it off Craigslist long before I even owned the Falcon because it was cheap. I got the axle and all new kingpins, tierod ends, wheel cylinders, brakes, and drums, for $120. I wouldn't give over $200 for just an axle myself, but it depends on what they're going in your area. The Falcon E100 van axle is plenty strong, and used on many gasser builds.
I doubt you'll have enough room for the long springs of an Econoline axle, so you might get the price down by just getting the axle and nothing else. Most people order the Speedway kit springs, but I bought aftermarket trailer springs as I had the mainspring and 2nd leaf from my other Speedway kit. Speedway springs sets are 31.5" long, and easier to fit than the @48" Econoline springs. (might even be longer than that!)
Cross steering an Econoline axle is not hard to do. A steering arm made to span the upper backing plate bolts (2.5" centers) will allow a drag link to go from there to your steering box and stay level to avoid bump steer. I also had to mount my Mazda/Courier PU box up front and steer on the front side, as the rear sump on my pan and fenderwell headers wouldn't allow the stock box.
Another option is a mid to late 60's Chevy van axle, but they will have 5x4.75" bolt pattern.
 

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Yah, what Vall said! Parts are not that easy to find, but they are out there. The good part is the axle bearings, king pins etc are also used on the Falcons. I would think if the rearend is in good shape that you would be good at $200 or so. But if you can get the front for $100 that would be good too. Check the bearing races to make sure they are not blued. The Econoline didn't like front bearings for some reason (don't ask how I know).
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
maddog3299 - 1946austin, Great info, I am going to see if he is set on his price, then drag some more rusty parts home and put them,,,SOMEWHERE,,,out of view of my wife is the priority,haha,, she is tired of looking at a full garage of cars and parts that are not finished! :eek:

I will let you know what kind of deal I got then it will be on to more questions I am sure,,,,:)
56 VIC - Tom
 

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It's actually very easy to find parts for the E100 axles, at least common parts. I found in searching that Autozone had drums, wheel cylinders, brakes, bearings, tie rod ends, and even king pin kits all in stock!
 

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Well, thats a first!
As usual, when I deal with Autozone I get everything sorted out at home online, then go over and give them the numbers, or they wont ever find the parts. I didn't need anything for my axle, as it came with all those parts, but a friend was asking where to get the parts and I found them at AZ, and then stopped at my local AZ to see if they really had them.
 

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I wish (maybe) they would have had a store here then, but no one was available when I was rebuilding the front axle. I ended up getting the things I needed from the Falcon store there in Oregon.
 

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I used an Econoline axle on a 35 Ford gasser years ago. It had a 455 Olds engine and I steered it from behind the axle (cross steer) using a GM power box. It worked well and the brakes were very good. Just tilt the kingpins back a bit more than stock and it should be fine. Bought a 60s Econoline once for parts and it turned out to be a 9in POSI . Put that behind a 392 in a 36 Plymouth. Should have bought a lotery ticket too!
 

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I wish (maybe) they would have had a store here then, but no one was available when I was rebuilding the front axle. I ended up getting the things I needed from the Falcon store there in Oregon.

The Falcon store is just two blocks from the place I retired from! I drove past it for 23 years, but never stopped in.
 

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He and his wife ran the place. He had all kinds of goodies. He sold it several years ago and retired. Liquidated all his stock. Darn shame no one could keep it going.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
OK, more questions,,, I called the guy to go buy the front axle and found out some things that may be a problem?

He said the front axle is not straight across the long span in the middle. It has a bend in both directions.

First he says there is an arc of 3/16 of an inch from top to bottom. Let me explain further. Top to bottom means if it were in the car and you bent down to look at it from in front of the license plate, the center of the beam would be higher in the middle than the points just before the spring pads. Also, to get this measurement he placed a long straight edge across the passenger side/top and then at the " crown" the straight edge started to separate from the axle,, and then at the far end just before the pad there was a gap of 3/16 of an inch (measured from the straight edge back to the beam). So, this is not alot of arc and I am wondering if a bit of a built in arc was designed into these beams so that when they are loaded withthe weight of the car, they will be flat? often trailer axles are like that.

THEN there is the other bend, if you had a top view of the axle he says it looks like the bend or "the crown" is to the front , right in the middle, which he thought someone may have put a chain on the vehicle and pulled it at one time and bent it a bit. It was measured the same way as I described above and he found it was not straight by about 1/4 of an inch.

Are these things normal?
Can these things be fixed?
Should I run like HELL?


56 VIC - Tom
 

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They are not normal, and they can be fixed. But I'd pass unless somebody gave it to me free and I could then spend the money to have a proper truck shop bend the axle back into shape. Mine had a bent tierod when I got it, but those are an easy fix. I put mine in my 12 ton press and straightened it with no problem. I wouldn't even begin to try and straighten an axle; I'd leave it for an expert.
 

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Steve a lot of people down here are using the Jeep Cherokee strait tube front axle. Two wheel drives around 1990 or so have tube strait axle with disk brakes and Ford 5 on 4.5 wheel bolt pattern. They cut the 4 link coil spring set up off and add parallel leaf spring set up. The last one a friend bought was $54 complete at the local U- Pull it yard . Picture is axle with Jeep mounts removed.
 

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I keep forgetting about those Jeep straight axles! They are a very good choice, and give you all the best modern parts. An added benefit is they are tube axles with welded in ends, so if you need to narrow them you can remove one end, cut the tube and reinstall the end.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
My main question is do you think this is a deal? it seems like it is but,,,there are the details...the devil is always in the details!

So, more help on straight axle stuff,,, I have a chance to buy what is pictured. It is a stock 59 f-100 axle with an aftermarket disk brake kit installed, in good condition ready to reuse,,, it was a running set up and they decided to put a camaro subframe under the 59 truck and lower it.
It comes with everything in the pic, most of which I probably wont use,,, it will cost me 175 bucks and a tank of gas in my diesel....2 1/2 hour drive each way

Does anyone think the aftermarket disk brake kit going to be a problem? figuring out who made it and/or getting parts? The guy selling it believes it looks like a well made set-up..of course he said that;).

I have been doing research and found the spring perch Center to Center that I need is 32 1/4 inches. That will work best on my 56 VIC. (That is the C to C measuerment of this 59 ford pick up axle)... it will center up almost perfect under my frame rails. So the Econoline set up turns out not to be the best for me the econoline C to C is 35 1/2.

I found i will need a 57 to 59 ford pickup axle or... a 61 to 64 ford pickup axle, for my 56 VIC set up.

Additional info on the descirption of this axle for sale... 1959 is the year that has a bit of a drop down in the middle, I see it called a "smile" drop down. It is not exactly what I wanted ,,I would like a straight one,, but they will be hard to find,,but,,,,

I am thinking when I find a straight one I could buy it, chrome it, and swap it out and re-use the rest of the disk brake stuff In the mean time I am farther down the road with the front end in place, fabbed up etc. etc and driving!
 

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Tom, I think if it is a close fit and you can make it work the price was pretty good. Not sure about the disc brakes, but probably a little research on the web will help figure it out. Do you know if the discs/calipers are Ford or GM? Seems a lot of the swaps used the GM midsize calipers. Sounds like a score for the 56.
 
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