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1953 chevy 210 rear axle swap...help!

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by 1955fourdoor, Feb 19, 2012.

  1. 1955fourdoor
    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2012
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    Location:
    spartanburg

    1955fourdoor Member

    Hi guys, gotten a lot of conflicting information from the web..I really need some pictures and good solid information so I can get her back on the road

    I recently purchased a 1953 Chevy 210 4 door and promptly yanked the straight six and power glide out. I have purchased and installed a 350 engine and turbo 350 transmission from a 79 Chevy pickup into the car. It has stock suspension on the front and rear. Due to the torque tube the rear axle has to be changed. I do not have any intention of hot-rodding this car or driving it extremely hard so breaking the stock leaf springs isn&#8217;t a concern, it will be solely a cruiser. The drive train was updated due to personal preference, reliability and ease of procuring replacement parts. That having been said i do not want to change the rear leaf springs or spring hangers. What axle can I get from a salvage yard that is relatively common and not overly expensive that will fit properly with the least amount of modification (I&#8217;m working in a car port) and allow me to also retain my stock wheels and tires. Pictures would be greatly appreciated!!<o:p></o:p>

    <o:p></o:p>
    Thank you in advance for your cooperation and help!!<o:p></o:p>
    <o:p> </o:p>
    Chris<o:p></o:p>
  2. Hnstray
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    Hnstray
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    '68 thru '74 Nova and equivalents.........'67thru'69 Camaro will fit and have the same bolt pattern. Some people like the s10 4x4 rear axles too.


    Ray
  3. JeffreyJames
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    SUGAR CITY

    JeffreyJames Member

    I'm interested as well. I have a 327 donated to me from my brother for my '54 and I was thinking a of grabbing a TH400 or 700r for it when the time comes so a rear end swap will be in order.
  4. phatfarmer2
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    phatfarmer2 Member

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  5. eric54chevy
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    Jun 3, 2009
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    Huffman, TX

    eric54chevy Member

    53/54 backing plate to backing plate is 54 1/2 I believe. I bought and 80 camaro that is 54 1/4 but decide not to use it and go with the 69 camaro that us 53 3/8. The reason I went smaller is that I will be running air bags with fender skirts. With the larger rear I would have rubbed the skirts when ridding low, happened to someone I know that us why I went smaller. Hope that helps....
  6. 54 Chevy
    Joined:
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    Oklahoma City, OK

    54 Chevy Member

    I am installing a S10 4x4 rear axle right now in a 54. I had to put new axle pads on the rearend and drill them for the offset pin on the springs but it works good so far.
  7. gas pumper
    Joined:
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    Boonton, NJ

    gas pumper Member

    I put a 76 Nova rear in my 54. Very easy swap. Made a spring pad adapter to locate the new rear on the old springs, make the adapter as thick as you want the lowering blocks to be. cause the center bolt is in the wrong place.

    I have a 4 speed saginaw, but the drive shaft from the Nova was the right lenght. Probably right for a 350, too.

    Parking brake cables adapted to the 54 with just cable clamps. Put on lower spring pad that had a lower shock mount attached.

    Reinforce the upper shock mount on the body, if it ain't broke now, it's gonna break the body soon anyway.

    frank
  8. 1955fourdoor
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    spartanburg

    1955fourdoor Member

    thanks for the input, it's very much apprecaited!
    i was looking at the pictures i took of the rear end and stock mounting...could i just unbolt the one bolt that attaches the axle to the leaf spring mount at the top.cut off the origional welded axle mounts, weld them to anouther axle and bolt them back to the existing leaf spring mounts with out having to even remove the leaf spring U-bolts or shock mount at all??

    Attached Files:

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  9. pbr40
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    pbr40
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    68-74 nova rear ends fit great
  10. gas pumper
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    Boonton, NJ

    gas pumper Member

    No.
    you want to weld on a flat spring pad to the new axle in the right place to set the pinion angle. It's the simplest way to do this. New u bolts, too.

    You don't want the new axle to be pivoting on that bolt.
  11. Boones
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    Boones
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    gas pumper, were you able to retain the factory E brake set up under the dash or did you use something else. I always heard you had to remove the E brake assebly from the firewall.
  12. kevin mac
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    toledo,oh

    kevin mac Member

    put a 68 camaro rear diff.n mine
  13. 1955fourdoor
    Joined:
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    spartanburg

    1955fourdoor Member

    i want to cut the exisitng mounts off the old axle and after i set the pinion angle for the new axle weld them on allowing me to retain the stock spring pad and shock mount. no new ubolts of spring pads would be required..would this not work? if i do go with a new spring pad and new u bolt and remove all the exisitng hard ware..what do i use to mount the bottom of the shocks?
  14. gas pumper
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    gas pumper Member

    Yes, stock handle.
    When I did the swap, I had just bought an NOS park brake handle, and there was no way I was gonna take that off. :D

    All I had to do underneath was splice the old and new cables together with those cute aircraft cable clamps. I did have to move the leverage bar/equalizer that mounts on the trans crossmember, or near the crossmember because something interfered with it, but it was no big deal.

    frank
  15. gas pumper
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    gas pumper Member

    upper spring pad i quess is called a saddle. has the 3" dia for welding to the axle tube and a flat pad to set on top of the spring. The lower spring pad is flat and has the four holes for the new u-bolts to go thru and has a tab or ear for the shock mount on one corner. Very common race car parts. Speedway or Summit.
  16. sierra rod shop
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    lockhart tx

    sierra rod shop Member

    1957 chevy works good have a ford 9 on my 53 chevy with a 350 and 700r
  17. 1955fourdoor
    Joined:
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    spartanburg

    1955fourdoor Member

    so i'm guessing that reuseing the saddle from the axle would work as long as i make sure the pinion angle is correct ofcourse. to me this seems to be the easiers way to retain as much of the origional suspension hard ware as possible and require the least amount of modification; seeing as pretty much every axle from what i'm reading will need the spring pad repositioned anyway to correct the pinion angle may as well just ratain the origional harware...thank you gas pumper for the heads up onthe speedway and summit parts..i'll check that out and may go that route if you think it's stronger and the price is reasonable..
  18. mrconcdid
    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2010
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    Florida

    mrconcdid Member

    I used an s10 blazer rear axle you can also use a s10 4x4 truck rear but you cannot use the 2wd trucks there narrower. Look at my build thred link in my
    Signature For pictures of the install.
    MrC.
  19. Mike Rotch
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    Location:
    Easley SC

    Mike Rotch Member

    78-87 monte carlo/cutlass/regal/etc have the same exact track width, I think.
    It's whats under mine.
  20. rustynewyorker
    Joined:
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    Location:
    Upstate New York, watching my New Yorker Rust

    rustynewyorker Member

    Mine has a '75 Camaro rear in it. 100% drop in bolt on if you make a set of lowering blocks that account for the offset pin and the deeper perch of the Camaro axle. If you don't want to lower it, use one of the Nova rearends, I see some of those are monoleaf and have much shallower perches.

    S10 four wheel drive is the easiest to find these days in the junkyards that fits right, but you need to weld up new perches.


    Basically these all fit:

    55-57 Chevy, no alterations except pin
    70-81 Camaro/Firebird, relocate pin, use blocks
    82-up S10 4x4, relocate perches

    68-74 and 75-79 Nova a lot of folks say work but I don't have data, and there is always the G-body rear if you want to cut off all the trailing arm and coil spring hardware.

    There are others which fit as well but those all also keep the bolt pattern.
  21. Slick's Speed Shop
    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2010
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    Location:
    San Antonio, TX

    Slick's Speed Shop Member

    Be carefull using 55-57 rear ends. Could break easy and cause you to invest too much money into them...even if you are not drag racing. Not many replacement pumpkins around like ford 9". I would use all new hardware and spring perches. You will probably break the U-bolts and cut away too much of your perches trying to get them off the housing and out of your car anyways...trailer supply stores have perches around $4 each that will work with 3" housings and for the width of your leafs...good luck.
  22. Gambino_Kustoms
    Joined:
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    koolsville U.S.A.

    Gambino_Kustoms Alliance Vendor

    what ever you do use make sure its 60 inchs from drum face (or wheel mounting serface ) to drum face im running a posi nova rear thats 58'' it was free so i used it and worked out realy bgood when i desided to run skirts we always use stock 50's chevy wheels or wheels made to same offset and width

    [​IMG]
    first gen camero
    4x4 s10
    alot of nova rear ends are 58" ( what im running )
    tri 5 chevys is an easy fix
    also with stock springs the locating pin is in the wrong place its about 2'' forward
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 1, 2014
  23. Wrong. You can't use the stock mount because it is made for torque tube. That is why it has the pivot bolt. If you put this on your new open drive rearend there would be no way to counteract the torque reaction! You need solid standard leaf spring pads. They are cheap, like $15-20 for a pair. Or just get the 70-81 Camaro rear that bolts in. Make lowering blocks that accounts for the offset pin. No need to make this more complicated than it has to be.
  24. gearhead695456
    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2008
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    145
    Location:
    Jacksonville FL

    gearhead695456 Member

    A 79 Camaro axle worked great in mine (perfect width), just weld in new perches from Jamco to fit the offset locator pins.
  25. Hellfire
    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2009
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    Location:
    Dallas,Texas stationed in South Jersey

    Hellfire Member

    Exactly! This is fairly easy to do and can be very cheap or expensive. On my 52 I used Posies springs with a 74 Nova rear using their saddles, spring/shock plates. I could have used the C.E. kit and not needed the saddles cut off and welded. I learned this after the fact. Get some cheap saddles from Summit or redrill the pin hole and call it done.
  26. Slick Lovelace
    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2013
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    2
    Location:
    Santa Rosa, California

    Slick Lovelace Member

    I have a 1954 Chevy 2-door sedan with 1956 Chevy rear leaf springs and axle. You mentioned relocating the pin in order to make it fit. Can I drill a new hole an inch or two behind the existing hole in the springs without wrecking them?
  27. davidbistolas
    Joined:
    May 21, 2010
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    Ontario Canada

    davidbistolas Member

    You drill the perch, not the spring. and it's about 3/4" inboard and 1 1/4" forward- from memory. Measure twice, drill it once.
  28. Big Mac
    Joined:
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    Highland, UT

    Big Mac Member
    1. Utah HAMBers

    I have a 10 bolt from an early 80s Chevy utility van. It's a little narrower, but everything else was bolt-in simple. I did it 20 years ago in high school. No problems since....

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