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Hot Rods Whats the best way to shorten a tie rod?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by irishsteve, Oct 13, 2019.

  1. irishsteve
    Joined: Jan 10, 2017
    Posts: 416

    irishsteve

    Im setting up a early Ford front end,and Im going to use Speedways 1-1/2 inch drop tie rod ends to get the tie rod below the wishbone.These rod ends are longer than the standard Ford rod end so I need a shorter tie rod tube.I plan on getting a Speedway tube,and modify the length.I see two possible ways.....cut to length ,and drill the end to 5/8 then tap to 11/16-18....or run the 11/16-18 tap in using the current threads as a guide,and then trim several inches as I go until I have the desired length.This method would help keep the tap straight,but most likely the area below the thread is larger than 5/8 inch which may make it very hard to tap.No lathe on hand so this is all by hand.Anyone ever shortened one? Plan Z is cut the center,and then put filler rod in,and weld a couple plug holes on each side then the center.I don't care for welded steering parts so im hoping to cut,and thread.
     
  2. anthony myrick
    Joined: Sep 4, 2009
    Posts: 4,478

    anthony myrick
    Member
    from al

    Got access to a lathe?
    We cut the length we needed from DOM tubing. Then cut the threads in a lathe. This kept them centered
     
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  3. Inked Monkey
    Joined: Apr 19, 2011
    Posts: 1,598

    Inked Monkey
    Member

    I had to shorten one from Speedway and I just ran the tap in further to extend the threads. No issues
     
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  4. jaw22w
    Joined: Mar 2, 2013
    Posts: 837

    jaw22w
    Member
    from Indiana

    The speedway tie rod tubes come with a pretty deep thread. I don't have any not installed on the car, but it seems like those threads are 3" deep. That means you could cut up to 3" off (1-1/2" each end). Speedway sells them in enough lengths you ought to be able to do it without tapping.
     
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  5. Pete Poling
    Joined: May 1, 2016
    Posts: 25

    Pete Poling
    Member

    I’m in the same boat, using the dropped f1 tie rods on my Model A. I was wondering the same thing as it looks like my tie rod tube needs to be 34” glad someone is in the same boat!
     

    Attached Files:

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  6. irishsteve
    Joined: Jan 10, 2017
    Posts: 416

    irishsteve

    Thats what I came up with 34 inches.I guess im going to run a tap in the existing threads to use them as a guide.Thread a inch then cut off a inch until I get there.Speedway makes a 42 inch so theres LOTS of taping to be done.I could cut to length them tap,but its hard to hand start large taps so they run true.If they arent true it wont go in far.The only machinist in my area is not cheap he charged me 120 bucks to hone 2 sets of kingpin bushings! so im in no hurry to go see him.
     
  7. LM14
    Joined: Dec 18, 2009
    Posts: 1,732

    LM14
    Member
    from Iowa

    Speedway will make them in any length you want.
    SPark
     
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  8. irishsteve
    Joined: Jan 10, 2017
    Posts: 416

    irishsteve

    I didnt see that I will have to recheck.They list a number of lengths,but not mine.
     
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  9. LM14
    Joined: Dec 18, 2009
    Posts: 1,732

    LM14
    Member
    from Iowa

  10. Vimtage Iron
    Joined: Feb 28, 2010
    Posts: 497

    Vimtage Iron
    Member

    Rare parts in Stockton Ca.can make one also.
    You could cut the rod take out what you need put a solid shaft inside plug weld it in and weld the butt together and your done.
     
  11. irishsteve
    Joined: Jan 10, 2017
    Posts: 416

    irishsteve

    Thanks for the lead on Rare Parts. Welding one was my last resort.
     
  12. Pete Poling
    Joined: May 1, 2016
    Posts: 25

    Pete Poling
    Member

    I’m gonna just call speedway.... it seems like I read somewhere that they do custom lengths. It’s probably double the cost lol
     
  13. Pete Poling
    Joined: May 1, 2016
    Posts: 25

    Pete Poling
    Member

    I also thought about ordering the longest one they have so I can have a chunk of the same stuff to use when making my drag link.... I think a 10” piece is the same price as the 52” piece
     
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  14. Do you guys even bother to look at then read the stuff they bother to put up on the web site?

    Read the last line?
    This is from their tie rod and drag link “kit” that if you were to order,, YOU need to tell them how long to make it.
    FA3A5985-C157-4E34-9BEB-AE5AD936B897.png
     
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  15. That sounds like $1000 worth of effort to solve a $100 problem
     
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  16. alanp561
    Joined: Oct 1, 2017
    Posts: 739

    alanp561
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    $98 for custom length.
     
  17. Bert Kollar
    Joined: Jan 10, 2007
    Posts: 921

    Bert Kollar
    Member

    Be certain to drill with 5/8" before tapping. I didn't and broke a 11/16 tap in half the hole
     
  18. alchemy
    Joined: Sep 27, 2002
    Posts: 14,304

    alchemy
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Did you even bother to look at the original post? ;)

    He said he is going to use the dropped ends, and they require a shorter tube than standard. Can't just measure hole-to-hole and send this dimension off to Speedway for them to build.

    Unless, Speedway will build the assembly with the dropped ends already installed......hmm.

    To the OP: As Bert Kollar said, don't just jam the tap in there unless you feel REALLY lucky. Breaking it off would ruin your day. There's got to be a guy around with a lathe that you can buddy up to. Even the smallest lathe will do the job. Drill, then tap, both on the lathe.
     
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  19. Pete Poling
    Joined: May 1, 2016
    Posts: 25

    Pete Poling
    Member

    Yea I’ll buy the $30 piece and do it myself lol[​IMG]


    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
     
  20. I shortened one many years ago by cutting it where I needed and discovered that I needed a specialty tap fortunately I had a friend that was a machinist and he had the expensive tap I needed to do the job. HRP
     
  21. irishsteve
    Joined: Jan 10, 2017
    Posts: 416

    irishsteve

    Breaking a tap in a section that hasn't been drilled to 5/8 is one of my concerns when taping below existing thread.If they will make one for 98 bucks I would say its money well spent just to have one more thing done.
     
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  22. Boneyard51
    Joined: Dec 10, 2017
    Posts: 2,748

    Boneyard51
    Member

    Remember there are three main kinds of taps. If used in the wrong place, you will get poor results.
    1: Starting tap, theses are very tapered and will start threads straight, with no problem, but will not complete the threads at the bottom of the hole.
    2: Bottoming tap, used to cut/clean threads all the way to the bottom of the hole.
    3: Combination tap, a combo of a starting tap and bottoming tap.... the most common tap out there and does both jobs......poorly!
    Use the right tap for the job, right technique, proper lubercation, no problem !




    Bones
     
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  23. goldmountain
    Joined: Jun 12, 2016
    Posts: 1,052

    goldmountain

    Speedway sells the 11/16" tap. I needed a longer drag link and it was cheaper to buy the next size longer and shorten it to fit.

    Sent from my SM-T350 using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
     
  24. I’ll just take that that as confirmation.
    6076DDD5-D856-4359-9562-88F9E6890887.png

    And just Incase ya skimmed over it they put it there again. In the notes

    Smfh
     
  25. krylon32
    Joined: Jan 29, 2006
    Posts: 5,929

    krylon32
    Alliance Vendor
    from Nebraska

    Call Pete & Jake's, I've had them make me lots of custom length tie rods and drag links for some of the weird things customers have had me do. I don't remember but I think they're cheaper than Speedway.
     
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