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Technical How to identify rear end

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by JayChicago, Apr 6, 2019.

  1. ^^^^ No need, the casting number he gave off the pinion support identifies as a 9" pinion support. It's definitely a 9".

    The way the photo is taken makes it look like there's room for a socket....
    Hnstray likes this.
  2. Hard to duplicate the shot the OP took I tried these are pics of a actual 9 inch and one can see that it could be misconstrued as a 8 inch when the 2 bottom bolts are not shown


  3. 427 sleeper
    Joined: Mar 8, 2017
    Posts: 867

    427 sleeper

    IMO, It's a small bearing 9". We're all looking at the wrong 2 studs. The 8" carrier castings are relatively square compared to a 9". Just my 2 cents worth.
  4. Bullit68
    Joined: Sep 16, 2009
    Posts: 74

    from Verona, PA

    I didn’t get any info on my truck either, but that’s part of the hobby! I’ve asked questions here and get a lot of great info! A little more info and the rear end issue will be solved.
  5. TomP64
    Joined: Dec 10, 2008
    Posts: 417

    from Vancouver

    Uhh guys, it is in a 37 Ford, why assume the rest of it is stock? That 58 to 64 nine inch housing never came with that later style third member. It may be a pickup housing shortened to the width of Maverick or Granada 8" axles. Shortening a rear end and changing housing ends and third members is really pretty common.
  6. TomP64
    Joined: Dec 10, 2008
    Posts: 417

    from Vancouver

    I see above mention of shortening a Econoline van long side axle. The "short" side axle of a 68-74 Econoline offset rear end is still a very long axle. The long side is the left which on any centered pinion 9" is usually 3" or more shorter than the right side. Using two of those long right side axles makes a rear end wider than any pickup truck or Galaxie.
  7. nobby
    Joined: Jan 8, 2006
    Posts: 414


    was the 58 ranchero axle small bearing
    do you have a weep hole in the bearing housing at 6 o'clock?
    is your axle flange to 'just' where the bearing sticks out 2 1/4''
    your back plates appear 1/4'' deeper than other at the mounting point stamping
  8. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 44,707


    I think the normal cars were small bearing, the Ranchero and Wagon were big bearing.

    at least that's what I saw on a couple of early rears I had
  9. nobby
    Joined: Jan 8, 2006
    Posts: 414


    I always thought these cases were 57 58 and 59
    do they end in 1964?
    what vehicles were these fitted to?
    I have a small bearing housing end from one, it appears the inner seal is of a larger od that a 1971 mustang small bearing
    I think the flange offset from bearing is not 2.5 inches like a 71 mustang
    therefore the back plate - if the brakes are in fact 10 x 2'' MUST be a funky stamping.
    this is where the problems arise when doing axle swaps me thinks.
    BUT if you have the case, back plates and axles from ONE unit, it matters not, as the shoes and drums
    IF 10 by 2'' are simply 10 '' drums 4.5'' pcd with a 2 3/8 bore/register, for a 2'' friction surface.
    IF the wear points on the back plates ' the part than the shoes rub on' have worn out , I doubt you'd find new ones - you may come acropper ordering the wrong inner seals.
    I think the location of the seal on the shaft differs? maybe the retaining collar is different on some?
  10. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 44,707


    no dimples in 57
    sidevalve8ba likes this.
  11. It can be tough to definitively identify Ford 9" housings.... Here's what I've observed....

    Car housings. The '57 is smooth round back, small bearing, has a 3/8" drain plug in the bottom, oil fill plug is in the pumpkin. The '58 is the same except for dimples, several styles. The '59 is the same as '58, except the drain is now gone (never to be seen again). Only the wagons/Rancheros had big bearings.
    '60-65, the oil fill moved to the housing (no longer in the pumpkin), only the wagons got the big bearings. The '63-65 Fairlane with the 289 Hi-po also got the 9", although the first-gen Mustang with the same motor didn't (unless it was a Shelby). All the limited-production Hi-pos got the 9" with big bearings; the 'D' code '64 Comets, Fairlane Thunderbolts, A/FX and B/FX cars, and the 50 289 Hi-po '65 Falcons that Ford of Canada built. These were all round back housings, some with dimples, some without.
    '66-68. First appearance of the 'flat back' housing. The big car housing are now easy to spot, as all are set up for coil springs. Oil fill moved back to the pumpkin where it would remain to the end of production. The big cars got the big bearings. The smaller cars got the 9" only if equipped with a FE, only the Ranchero got the 9" with big bearings as standard.
    '69-71. First appearance of the 'heavy duty' housing. This featured a longer center section/shorter axle tubes for better resistance to bending. Used primarily in the coil spring cars, it did make limited appearances in some hi-po leaf spring applications. The smaller cars now got the 9" behind any motor larger than the 302. One change Ford made was they discontinued the 'small bearing' center section, switching to the larger big bearing tubes but 'necked down' at the ends for the small bearings.
    '72-82. Mostly unchanged from '69-71, except the Torino/Montego was now coil-sprung and moved up to the heavy-duty housing and was the only housing used after '73. With the downsizing of the Mustang in '74 and Ford's increasing use of Dana-style rear axles starting in '71, by '76 the 9" had pretty much disappeared from Ford cars, with one last appearance in the '76-82 Granada/Monarch/Versailles if optioned with either the 351W and/or 4-wheel disc brakes.

    The '57-86 light trucks/vans more or less mimicked the cars, except that all used big bearings and the heavier available housing. Easy to spot, these all had the leaf spring pads on the top of the axle tubes. Ford's phasing-in of the 8.8" starting in '83 marked the beginning of the end for the 9".

    There are a few caveats; you'll find some 'year creep' as Ford would make running changes and/or use up current stock. And just because a housing looks the same, doesn't always mean it is the same; Ford was known for changing the thickness of the metal used in the stampings that made up the housing, although that's limited to the late '60s and newer housings AFAIK...
    squirrel likes this.
  12. DDDenny
    Joined: Feb 6, 2015
    Posts: 13,105

    from oregon

    Some dimples bigger than others.
  13. JayChicago
    Joined: Mar 19, 2016
    Posts: 9

    from Chicago

    I can get a socket on those lower bolts, is just as the picture shows.
  14. mgtstumpy
    Joined: Jul 20, 2006
    Posts: 7,799


    Just to clarify things, 9" on left and 8" on right, note the pinion location and direct access to lower bolts on 8" but not so on the 9". 9" is round however 8" is flat on top and bottom.
    9-v- 8.png


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