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I have had a Gasser Kit fom Speedway on back order for well over a month and finally canceled the order. I'm going to try & piece one together, any ideas or suggestions.
 

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I have had a Gasser Kit fom Speedway on back order for well over a month and finally canceled the order. I'm going to try & piece one together, any ideas or suggestions.
I have also been on that call list for a long time. Since early July. You must admit the "price is RIGHT". I do not plan to add it on to the Opel until the Winter so waiting is not an issue with me.

I have a hot rod/gasser buddy who installed a Meyer straight axle w/frame ..... a very very nice setup.... makes for easy install ..... only setback is the "price". The Meyer's package is the way to go "IF" you can afford it. Less work & fab time/work to install. But you have to "pay" for the convenience compared to "gasser straight axle kit from Speedway.

I am still going to wait!!!!
 

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Might consider doing what many Tri 5 gassers run, a '55-'59 Chevy truck axle, or a '49-'54 Chevy truck axle. Either can be easily adapted to most cars, and can have 5 bolt drums swapped from passenger cars to give you a 5 on 4.75" bolt pattern. I think Speedway even sells a disc kit for these axles to convert to disc brakes. The axles are cheap too; around $150 often.
 

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1946Austin is correct. '59 truck axle is what I used in my '55. You may want the '47-'54 axle, it's slightly narrower. Both can still be had cheap and disc brake conversions are available from several sources.
 

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That is exactly what I put on my Catalina, and the Speedway front disc conversion. Many of the original gasser in the day ran the chevy or the ford beam axle. But if I had me druthers, I'd go the straight axle though. In the end they just look better. My truck axle just looks bulky.




See, it looks bulky to me.



Mark L
 

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I'm OK Waiting for Speedway

That is exactly what I put on my Catalina, and the Speedway front disc conversion. Many of the original gasser in the day ran the chevy or the ford beam axle. But if I had me druthers, I'd go the straight axle though. In the end they just look better. My truck axle just looks bulky.




See, it looks bulky to me.

Mark L


Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhh Noooooooooooo "Mr Mark"!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Even though I have just got to know about you & your "VERY UNIQUE" poncho gasser project in a very short period of time..... I DO KNOW we "think" a LOT alike.

When building a project like you are doing nothing is worse than NOT being satisfied when a part is bought and or installed.

It's like something that "stays" on the "back burner" constantly "simmering away". Knowing you as I think I do (like I know how'd I'd feel about it) one day we'll be reading you will be changing it out. I know it's a lot of work ..... BUT!!!! ???? !!!!

When I had my G-Body EL Camino (a gasser-look project) I was going to put a Speedway straight axle kit on it. I got on Speedway's straight axle waiting-list over three months ago. Thankfully I never got to order it. Even though I am going to put one on the Opel over the Winter I now need a much small axle. So I am glad I was not able to order it back then.

The Opel, as cool as it is now, is definitely lacking the "correct" gasser-stance. Even more than that the back of the front tires RUB against the bottom of the inner fenderwells when the wheels are turned anymore more than 1/2 way. The inner fenderwells are connected to the frame so the tires also rub the frame slightly. So just removing the inner fenderwells would not cure the "rubbing problem".

I would never be content to just raise the front of the car (using a space block between the rack & pinon suspension & the frame. So I am "waiting" for Speedway to call!

Being the Opel was formerly a "drag strip car only" the previous owners rarely had to deal with turning the wheel very much being most of the steering was done was in practically a straight direction.

I would like to build a new frame for the front of the car and install the straight front axle slightly "forward" ....... not only to get even more tire to fenderwell clearance but also for the "altered wheelbase" look!!!!!

Got a Loooooooong list of things to do over the Winter. I'm Lovin' ever minute of it.

This car is definitely a "keeper"!!!!
 

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John, even though you've never met me, your impressions of are right on. That is exactly why I now have the twin turbos instead of the single. It would have been much easier to just stay with the single, bolt it all up and go. But it is just not what I want. AND. To that end, again you are spot on. I will be adding a true straight axle at some point. But with the weight of the car I just have to have a much stronger axle made. I did contact a guy I think in Indiana, that was all ready to make one for me, but he needed me to dismantle my present spindles and king pins etc so he could get all the dimensions. He had never made an axle with the Chevy truck parts before. But I did not want to spend the extra, again since I already had the car sitting on the present combnation, and it will drive this way. So, sometime in the future I expect I'll be trying to talk to him again and go forward.
You were talking about installing the front axle on yours a little forward. You can see in this pic that I did the same thing. I found that the gasser look almost requires the installer to place the axle forward about 2 inches fromn the stock location because for the high front lift. If you lift it high and the front wheels are in their original location, they appear farther rearward.



Mine look a little too far forward but the height of the front end is not set yet. Also once I trim the front fenter drop down after the front bumper, it will not look as far forward. Mark L
 

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I have an axle and springs out of a 49 Chevy truck that I was gonna use on my car, but I ended up buying the Speedway kit. I've been meaning to list them for sale and have been to busy to do so, inbox me if anyone is interested in them. Springs have been re-arched 4".
 

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I'd see no reason not to use the Speedway axle on your Catalina Mark. I doubt your car weighs too much for it. I've seen a lot of big block Tri 5's with a Speedway axle kit, and they surely are not light cars.
 

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John, even though you've never met me, your impressions of are right on. ...... .

Mark L
Mark, I guess what helped me sense the connection between us is the writing style you have & the details you share with all of us here.

When I was younger I used to do a LOT of 1/2 a**ed things that I always ended up regretting eventually. Of course those were times I could not afford to do any better. Rather than "wait" for the $$$ or the right "part, etc" to come along I often would "over" compromise.

Then like others on the forum have mentioned, a person can become "disenchanted" with the car/project . Maybe that disenchantment is what often starts the "compromising" or quite possibly "vice versa". Whatever!!!

Then the work slows down or stops completely. Next thing the project ends up getting sold at a substantial loss. Especially with the state of the economy today and the excess of completed cars & projects for sale.

That's what has happened with my past two projects (a C10 short bed P/U & a G-Body EL Camino). I was trying to "build" something into a car I would like instead of waiting to get one that was "just right". What a BIG waste of time & money.
 

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Here's another option that a couple guys I know put in their cars; a Jeep Cherokee 2wd front straight axle. Tons of them in wrecking yards, and they sell for about $100-$125. You would need to buy the Speedway spring kit for $80, but they have disc brakes and 5 lug pattern.
Here's one I found in the forum album pictures:
http://www.gasserhotrods.com/forum/album.php?albumid=61&attachmentid=966

The one pictured has spacer blocks to make it even higher, but they aren't stock with those blocks.
 

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If you need a narrow front axle, postal jeeps have a straight tube axle under them (although, the tube is about the size of an average drive shaft tube). Probably too narrow for your Ford.
 

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Jeep Straight Axle-Not Too bad

Here's another option that a couple guys I know put in their cars; a Jeep Cherokee 2wd front straight axle. Tons of them in wrecking yards, and they sell for about $100-$125. You would need to buy the Speedway spring kit for $80, but they have disc brakes and 5 lug pattern.
Here's one I found in the forum album pictures:


The one pictured has spacer blocks to make it even higher, but they aren't stock with those blocks.
That baby is ^^^UP^^^ there. The straight axle setup actually looks good. Nice & clean looking. On a car setup at normal "gasser" height the large spacer blocks would probably not be needed.

Wonder if the price includes the complete setup???? Axle, rotors, disc brakes etc????

For me (& I assume for others as well) the Speedway straight axle kit eliminates the guesswork of putting together parts that will work with one another.

I wonder what the "width" of the Jeep Cherokee is. The Opel trac-width is pretty narrow. Less than 47 inches. Wonder what the Jeep's width is???

Considering what '46 Austin said about the "wrecking yard" price the Jeep straight axle appears to be a more economical alternative to other straight axle kits.

The Jeep setup is pretty clean looking compared to other straight axles I have seen used on gasser-style cars. Although NOT a CLEAN as the "classic-styled" one offered by Speedway.

Decisions, decisions, decisions.....
 

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Stock specs for a Cherokee say it's overall width is 67.9" or 70.5" body, dpending on flares, but track width is 58" and that's the width outside to outside on the tires. So depending on your present outside tire measurement it might work. I'd guess most would be narrower since the Jeep uses wide front tires, and we mostly use skinnies. Still probably too wide for the Opel. I'm surprised the Opel is that narrow outside to outside on the tires.
 

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Hey Folks
I am new to this forum. I am in the process of taking a nice 55 two door post, removing the dropped fromt and going with a custom chromed straight axle front end. May I suggest a source for quality custom made parts and service to those that do not know this guy already. Steve Thompson Thompson's Garage in Ohio is a phone call away. He can help you with any straight axle part you need. Builds custom axles to your specificatons. His number is 513-237-4428.
 
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