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How A Differential Works

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Ryan, Sep 4, 2009.

  1. Ryan
    Joined: Jan 2, 1995
    Posts: 18,437

    from Austin, TX
    Staff Member

    Last edited: Sep 4, 2009
  2. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 41,077


  3. belair
    Joined: Jul 10, 2006
    Posts: 7,705

    1. H.A.M.B. Chapel

    Fun stuff-I acually learned a little. The principles by which things work are often lost as we learn more complicated things. The tinker toy model made it plain. Thanks.
  4. 1950ChevySuburban
    Joined: Dec 20, 2006
    Posts: 6,207

    Member Emeritus
    from Tucson AZ

    I always thought it was neat how they worked. I understand them completely and all, but I remember being younger and mystified.
    Another cool deal to play with is planetary gearsets. I don't know who invented those, but pretty damn neat!
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  5. woodhawg
    Joined: Apr 11, 2009
    Posts: 938

    1. S.F.C.C.

    So that's how it works! Nice old piece.
    Joined: Jul 16, 2006
    Posts: 2,572


    There ya go, now everyone can tell which gears they need to "weld up" to make it a posi.
  7. ChevyGirlRox
    Joined: May 13, 2005
    Posts: 3,485

    from Ohio

    And produced by GM none the less! Now a days car companies don't want you to know how or why anything works or your car, you might...fix it! :eek:

    I miss those simple how to articles from the old mags and little books! For the most part today the how-tos are so clouded with product placement it is hard to focus! I long for the good ole days when hot rodders were 'dumb' and needed edumacated :rolleyes:

    Or maybe now they just figure everyone knows everything. Some stuff is definitely worth repeating!

    Thanks for the gem of a video Ryan!
  8. 38zephyr
    Joined: Sep 3, 2006
    Posts: 622


    In the old days they made things simple enough to understand , I sure enjoyed that !
  9. Henry VIII
    Joined: Mar 30, 2009
    Posts: 274

    Henry VIII
    from Tulsa OK

    I too miss those old articles, they helped me keep my cars running when I was in school back in the 60's. If they would bring them back I might renew my HR subscription.

  10. fab32
    Joined: May 14, 2002
    Posts: 13,988

    Member Emeritus

    I remember asking my grandather about this very thing when I was about 6-7 years old. He had an old differential center section laying outside of his shop and drug it inside to explain the "inner workings". After a few frustrating explainations (caused by my inability to keep my mouth shut and my eyes and mind open) he finally managed to get the point across. I remember him leaving it up on the bench for days after, so I could turn it over and let the "lesson" sink in. I owe him big time for his patience and willingness to teach me and hardly a day goes by that I don't think about him.

  11. BLAKE
    Joined: Aug 10, 2002
    Posts: 2,714


    My Tinkertoys were made o' wood.:(

    Very cool video.
  12. 4woody
    Joined: Sep 4, 2002
    Posts: 2,063


    There is a lot of stuff I'd like to have explained like that. Great clip.
  13. atomickustom
    Joined: Aug 30, 2005
    Posts: 3,127


    Anybody ever watch Popular Hot Rodding TV? It was kind of a goofy show, but on every episode they had a computer-animated segment that explained some basic thing (differentials, camshafts, ignition systems, etc.) and I found them useful as hell. I am a firm believer that there is no such thing as too much basic information, and no such thing as an explanation that is too simple (as long as it's correct!).

    I'm not good at finding things on YouTube, but if those videos are on the net somewhere I'd really appreciate it is someone posted the link(s). They've gotta be out there somewhere?
  14. Jobe
    Joined: Oct 19, 2004
    Posts: 1,248

    from Austin, Tx

    Yeah, after seeing D.W.'s rear end guts hanging out at the HAMB drags it got me wondering how it all works as how does a posi work?
  15. NoSurf
    Joined: Jul 26, 2002
    Posts: 4,073


  16. ChevyGirlRox
    Joined: May 13, 2005
    Posts: 3,485

    from Ohio

    Try the auto section at I've found that site to be very helpful in numerous life applications.
  17. hotrodladycrusr
    Joined: Sep 20, 2002
    Posts: 20,727


    When my rear end exploded last year I gathered all the parts in a box and dragged that box over to Scott's place where Matt AKA WhiskeyRunner from Ohio was going to be for the weekend, with alot of other HAMB guys as well. Matt and I sat down on the driveway with the box o stuff between us and he explained how everything worked, why it happend and answered all my questions. It's nice to have friends willing to do that. Just so happened most of the other guys stood around and listened to the explaination as well. Can never get too much learnin':cool:
  18. belair
    Joined: Jul 10, 2006
    Posts: 7,705

    1. H.A.M.B. Chapel

    How true-my 38 Chevy still had the owners manual in the glove box when I bought it-it was titled "Things You Should know About Your 1938 Chevrolet" -or something close. It had exploded views of the trans and other important parts, locations of all the grease fittings, etc. Now it's just a recommendation to go see the dealer. Different folks, different times.
  19. Ebbsspeed
    Joined: Nov 11, 2005
    Posts: 4,466


    That will come in Jam Handy when it's time for my daughter to learn how a differential works.
  20. ChevyGirlRox
    Joined: May 13, 2005
    Posts: 3,485

    from Ohio

    You know though, thinking about it I probably shouldn't put all of the lack of knowledge/education blame on the car companies. A lot of vehicle owners/drivers have NO desire what so ever to know ANYTHING about the cars they are driving. Well, that is until they break and they have to pay some 'grease monkey' to fix it! :D
  21. plym49
    Joined: Aug 9, 2008
    Posts: 2,790

    from Earth

    I loved watching that. Not only in the way that the materiel was presented, but even the overall way that the production was done. Thanks, Ryan! :)
  22. Gigantor
    Joined: Jul 12, 2006
    Posts: 3,805


    I guess I appreciate a time that bothered to teach something in my "speed" and go so far as to overexplain it so a numbah like me can comprehend it. Thanks, Boss.
  23. WildWilly68
    Joined: Feb 1, 2002
    Posts: 1,705


    Definately well broken down so anyone can understand it if they take the time to do so. I always enjoy those old presentations, thanks for posting.
  24. scottybaccus
    Joined: Mar 13, 2006
    Posts: 4,106


    No kidding! If you watch that and still have trouble understanding what's going on in your axle housing, you are in trouble yourself.
  25. Ian Berky
    Joined: Nov 28, 2007
    Posts: 3,643

    Ian Berky

    OMG!! This video is amazing!! I never fully understood how it worked until today!! Thank you Ryan!!

  26. skwurl
    Joined: Aug 25, 2008
    Posts: 1,620


    That was cool. What an illustration. Thanks
  27. Stoveboltz
    Joined: Nov 24, 2007
    Posts: 10


    Very cool, and interesting. Don't think I've ever seen it explained so well.
  28. autobilly
    Joined: May 23, 2007
    Posts: 3,090


    There's a lot of truth in that comment. I had a car in the other day that the owner preferred to drive to my Dealership and pay our $115.00 p/h labour rate to have me set the time on his clock/radio than read the owner's manual and do it himself.:confused:
  29. onedge
    Joined: May 25, 2006
    Posts: 1,000


  30. Rudy J
    Joined: Sep 28, 2008
    Posts: 1,484

    Rudy J
    1. Austin HAMB'ers

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