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Technical Vintage-style Altered build: Open dif, or limited slip?

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by Brad54, Oct 13, 2013.

  1. Brad54
    Joined: Apr 15, 2004
    Posts: 6,008

    Brad54
    Member
    from Atl Ga

    I'm going to recreate my uncle's Altered, raced from '61-'65. Tube frame with a solid-mouted rear axle, it originally ran a '57 Chevy rear that was narrowed two inches on each side. I'm going to run a Mopar 8 3/4.

    Would it be smarter to run a limited slip dif, or an open? Or, for that matter, a spool?

    My gut tells me a spool could cause problems with the car getting darty if one side loses traction (even with a 108-inch wheel base).
    But, it's a drag car! They're not supposed to have one-wheel-peel.

    Thoughts?

    -Brad
     
  2. I don't know when spools became popular, original might have been welded. Definitely not open if you wanted to win!
     
  3. 2racer
    Joined: Sep 1, 2011
    Posts: 960

    2racer
    Member

    I ran a limited slip in my fed, worked very well...
     
  4. black 62
    Joined: Jul 12, 2012
    Posts: 1,895

    black 62
    Member
    from arkansas

    if you are making real power ---open...
     
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  5. k9racer
    Joined: Jan 20, 2003
    Posts: 3,117

    k9racer
    Member

    With today's tires vs tires 40 years ago you can get lots of bite with a open rear. This will make the car drive straight. now if you are putting down 600 HP go with a spool
     
  6. snaptwo
    Joined: Apr 25, 2011
    Posts: 696

    snaptwo
    Member

    The "Wing" runs a spool in a 9" , it's a bear to hand push in the pits.We ran one in a AA/gasser ,8 3/4" no problems. we did find that it's best to get all your stuff , axles and spool from the same vendor as some use 30 deg. or 45deg face angles on the splines.
     
  7. dreracecar
    Joined: Aug 27, 2009
    Posts: 2,908

    dreracecar
    Member
    from so-cal

    A spool is simple , inexpensive, bullitproof (only one part), and drives just fine. Mark Williams stuff is the only outfit with 45* splines is is out of budget for most people on this board.
    Just get bigger freinds to help you push
     
  8. My Anglia B/Gas car has run a SPOOL in the Dana 60 for MANY year, and it is only a 90" wheelbase.
     
  9. hog mtn dave
    Joined: Jul 14, 2004
    Posts: 1,337

    hog mtn dave
    Member

    Brad - I brought that spool to the Gear Jam and forgot to tell you. It's still in my truck.
     
  10. powrshftr
    Joined: Mar 29, 2013
    Posts: 4,550

    powrshftr
    Member

    This is cracking me up....there are actually people advising you to run an open diff in a drag car.
    That's like saying you don't need those extra cubic inches,they're only going to make more horsepower,then you have to deal with the hassle of hooking it up.
    Wow.

    Yes,run a spool in it.They are cheap,they are guaranteed to work,and there are no moving parts to break or wear out like a clutch type limited slip.

    Scott


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  11. dreracecar
    Joined: Aug 27, 2009
    Posts: 2,908

    dreracecar
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    from so-cal

    And those are the same people that paint the inside of their engines
     
  12. powrshftr
    Joined: Mar 29, 2013
    Posts: 4,550

    powrshftr
    Member

    Haha!That always scared me too....I always pictured it peeling off and lumping up inside oil galleries and all over the face of the pickup screen...

    Scott


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  13. Brad54
    Joined: Apr 15, 2004
    Posts: 6,008

    Brad54
    Member
    from Atl Ga

    Dammit! Dammit dammit dammit!!!!
    I thought about it all day, too, believe it or not. But I was running around so much I couldn't even begin to track you down.

    I DID see you guys make a pass in that Camaro though, and freakin' LOVED it. Damn that is a bitchin' looking car.

    I'm putting that spool in the gasser, and it got me to wondering about this Altered project I'm going to tackle over the winter.

    So... Bring that thing to the swap meet next month, and I'll happily relieve you of it!

    -Brad
     
  14. Brad54
    Joined: Apr 15, 2004
    Posts: 6,008

    Brad54
    Member
    from Atl Ga

    Excellent. That's EXACTLY the perspective and experience I was looking for.
    108-inch WB with narrower tires than you're probably running should keep me out of trouble.

    Thanks very much for the input. That's the kind of stuff I really value here.

    -Brad
     
  15. HemiRambler
    Joined: Aug 26, 2005
    Posts: 4,140

    HemiRambler
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  16. THE FRENCHTOWN FLYER
    Joined: Jun 6, 2007
    Posts: 2,850

    THE FRENCHTOWN FLYER
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    from FRENCHTOWN

  17. DualQuad55
    Joined: Mar 5, 2005
    Posts: 1,379

    DualQuad55
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    from Epsom, NH

     
  18. theHIGHLANDER
    Joined: Jun 3, 2005
    Posts: 7,899

    theHIGHLANDER
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    Today's tires and track conditions might even demand a spool. You take that thing to a good track an open diff might even cause problems when you consider the chassis flexing counter-clockwise as viewed from behind. You did say solid mounted rear axle. By the time all the TQ gets multiplied at the tire anything but a spool could be asking for trouble.
     
  19. JohnnyD.
    Joined: Mar 10, 2007
    Posts: 57

    JohnnyD.
    Member
    from Kentucky

    The Dec '62 Hot Rod does an in depth article on the Greer BP dragster. I was surprised too when I read they ran a 3.08 open diff.
     
  20. powrshftr
    Joined: Mar 29, 2013
    Posts: 4,550

    powrshftr
    Member

    Pretty tough to spin both tires with an open diff.It was either shimmed up tight,or had welded spider gears.
    There's no way in hell the most competitive dragster in the history of the sport was only putting power to half as many wheels as any other car in the field,and still beating them all..

    Scott


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  21. Zig Zag Wanderer
    Joined: Jul 6, 2007
    Posts: 564

    Zig Zag Wanderer
    Member

    you should do some reading on the subject. look at any picture of an FED or an Altered prior to 1966 or so, photographed from either side. spin they did; equally! they were not shimmed tight or welded; in fact Ed Pink specialized in blueprinting the spider gears for anti-galling with hard-chrome plating etc. with the old, hard, pie crust slicks and "unglued" tracks, open diffs were the norm in fuel dragsters and altereds before the advent of slipper clutches
     
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2013
  22. powrshftr
    Joined: Mar 29, 2013
    Posts: 4,550

    powrshftr
    Member

    Well it's not much of an "open" diff if power goes equally to both wheels,now is it......?
    If they spun equally,then that's essentially modified to work like a spool,locker,or posi unit would......which is pretty much exactly what I said. ;)


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  23. Zig Zag Wanderer
    Joined: Jul 6, 2007
    Posts: 564

    Zig Zag Wanderer
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    as i said, do some reading. those slicks had no bite off the line and would be equally overwhelmed, gradually hooking up by the 1000 foot mark. 49-56 olds/pontiac open diffs with 3.08 thru 3.42's were the norm with direct drive
     
  24. powrshftr
    Joined: Mar 29, 2013
    Posts: 4,550

    powrshftr
    Member

    Wow.You just stated 15 minutes ago that they were set up so that both wheels were fed power,did you not?
    That effectively means that it's no longer operating as an open differential.
    I've never seen a photo of a fueller smoking ONE tire before.
    Anyone?Am I misreading the previous posts...?


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  25. Zig Zag Wanderer
    Joined: Jul 6, 2007
    Posts: 564

    Zig Zag Wanderer
    Member

    i have no disrespect for you and no dog in this fight, but please do re-read my first post. i never said they were both fed power. i implied that by the action of being equally overwhelmed, inertia takes over and spins both wheels.
     
  26. II FUNNY
    Joined: Jul 31, 2010
    Posts: 1,825

    II FUNNY
    Member

    It was done in the past and I think that is why people still ask. To me it makes sense, because a posi equiped vehicle with the tires spinning, the rear tries to get around the front and that is what the open diff dragsters were trying to not have happen. Omce tire technology and track surfaces changed I think the idea was dropped.

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  27. Zig Zag Wanderer
    Joined: Jul 6, 2007
    Posts: 564

    Zig Zag Wanderer
    Member

    right on, II Funny. with no burnout routine, the tracks unprepped as they were in the day and those tires, for whatever reason; it worked with the fuelers and altereds where the 1200 to 1800 hp would simply overwhelm the amount of available traction off the line. spider gear galling was a problem and could make the car swap ends.

    when the wrinklewalls showed up things had to change because of tire growth if one leg spun because of a galled spider

    in other words, if one leg was "hanging up" due to internal friction, differential action would spin the other leg faster, resulting in what is shown the image in your post
     
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2013
  28. black 62
    Joined: Jul 12, 2012
    Posts: 1,895

    black 62
    Member
    from arkansas

    like i said if you are making real power ---look at the famous picture of the Winged Express all crossed up at Lions , perfect example of real power--- open was thought to be the best chance of surviving a broken axle...
     
  29. JohnnyD.
    Joined: Mar 10, 2007
    Posts: 57

    JohnnyD.
    Member
    from Kentucky

    [​IMG]

    Sneaky deception? Doubt it. Those early articles are loaded with details.
    Here's the lead pic.

    [​IMG]
    Evidently happened right here on earth.
     
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2013
  30. Pete Eastwood
    Joined: Jul 27, 2011
    Posts: 848

    Pete Eastwood
    Member
    from california

    Yup, AA/FD's ran spider gears, little ten spline axles & mag third members with mag caps on the carriers! (1950 Old's mostly)
    When you're smokin' the tires the whole 1/4 mile there's not much load on that stuff.
    With the restorations I've been doing, I've collected quite a few of those M/T mag third members, and they all have spider gears in them.
    Ed Pink even helped me out with some of his old "Trick" spider gear kits.

    Pete Eastwood
     
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2013

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