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A possible option for guys that need a stronger 1/2 ton

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by k5james, Mar 15, 2005.

  1. k5james

    k5james 1/2 ton status

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    While doing some searches on building building up the 12 bolt in my wannabe prerunner 72 Blazer I came accross a link to this outfit.

    http://www.mitchelldifferential.com/pages/3/index.htm

    They make a full float kit for 12 bolts. The axles they use are supposed to be 33% stronger than stock. Since Warn isn't making their kit anymore this might be the way to go for those of us that don't want to lose the clearance and lightweight of our 1/2 ton stuff. What do you guys think?
     
  2. dirtwarrior17

    dirtwarrior17 Banned

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    500 bucks for a d60? damn i think i found my source....

    do they come with disc brakes like the picture?

    also what exactly comes with it? just the housing? no axles or gears?

    I would go with the 1/2 stuff if i was staying at 35x12.50's but i plan to go with 36x13.50's for my next tire and i want piece of mind.

    a ff kit for 800 seems kinda pointless since the beefier d60 is only 500.

    If you want to keep the 1/2 ton then thats the way to go.
     
  3. AkMudr

    AkMudr 1/2 ton status

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    "All rear housings are made with new D.O.M. seamless tubing, new late style Ford housing ends, and new heavy duty spring perches. The Dana 44 & 60 models include a new Dana cover, and all housings come primed and ready for paint."


    D60SR……………………Dana 60 rear - straight cut…………………………………………… $495.00

    D60RR……………………Dana 60 rear - reverse cut…………………………………………… $1095.00
     
  4. dirtwarrior17

    dirtwarrior17 Banned

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    what do they mean by "cut"?
     
  5. AkMudr

    AkMudr 1/2 ton status

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    Id imagine gear rotation, standard and reverse rotation
     
  6. MarcS

    MarcS 1/2 ton status

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    If your looking to just get rid of the C-clips, I would just get 2 sets of Superior axles and c-clip eliminators from Summit. Should cost waaay less then that kit.
    Guessing about $400.
     
  7. 90blzr

    90blzr 1/2 ton status

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    Or just get the ford housing ends, which handle side loads find (c-clip eliminators dont) from moser...by the time you get the housing cut, ends welded on etc...shouldnt be more than a few hun. Thats what I did in my elco.
     
  8. 90blzr

    90blzr 1/2 ton status

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    that wasnt inlcluding the shafts though...so your estimate is a closer figure altogether.:blush:
     
  9. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    I guess I'm butting in to cause problems, but whats the point of a full float 12 bolt?

    I understand the broken axle/driving issue, but doesn't it just make sense to go with a 14SF or FF (either of which is inherently stronger) instead of spending that kind of money on an inherently weaker design, which when built the same, can never be stronger than either of the 14 bolts?

    As far as I can tell, the ONLY reason to convert to a full floater design is because you are worried about axle shaft breakage. Is 12 bolt axleshaft breakage an actual concern? I've seen it done of course, anything is possible, but is it likely enough that the 12 bolt (vs either 14 bolt) ring/pinion/carrier/spline strength is NOT a concern, while axle breakage alone is enough to warrant that kind of expenditure?
     
  10. k5james

    k5james 1/2 ton status

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    My Blazer is going to see almost strictly desert/sand/street duty and maybe some light trails here and there. I also am not going any bigger than 35's and my engine is going to be around 400HP. A 14 Bolt FF is out of the question due to it's size and weight and I want to keep 6 lug axles. From what I've gathered on this and other boards is that the 14 bolt SF isn't all that much stronger than a 12 bolt with some good axles not to mention it is still bigger and heavier. The best bet for my application would be a custom floater 9" but unfortunately other parts of my project have eaten up most of my rear end budget. So if I'm going to keep the 12 bolt, I might as well beef it up as much as I can. I'm sure there are others on here in a similar situation.
     
  11. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    I used to be of the opinion that the 10/12 bolt was fine for my truck too, since it's 99% street. Blowing up the carrier on the street changed my mind. Of course, without the gov-lock the carrier wouldn't be in two pieces, but the pinion gears would still be taking a beating even in an open

    The 14SF not being stronger is incorrect. I'm not an expert on this thing, but for one, the axles are all 33 spline. No stock 10 or 12 bolt has that. I'd have to assume the axles themselves are larger, since the axle tubes are larger than the 10/12 bolt. Since the tubes are larger, that means you will have less axle bearing speed. I'm sure axle diameter, etc is on the board here somewhere, but I couldn't find the weight difference.

    The ring gear is 9.5", and the pinion is going to be larger/stronger as well of course.

    You lose 1" of ground clearance over a 10/12 bolt.

    Weight penalty I doubt is much more. MAYBE a disk brake swap would bring them closer in weight?

    The real problem IMO is that you will end up with potential gear ratio difference swapping an axle, and then there is the whole 6-8 lug issue. I found a 6 lug that was already under a K5, so no work on the perches for me, but that would be an issue, unless you got 6 lug axles from a later truck, and swapped them into an earlier C/K 14SF housing. Lockers and what not seem to be pricey for the SF as well, but maybe that is just what happens when you start dealing with lockers and larger rear axles.

    I think the slight bit of weight penalty, plus loss of clearance, is going to be worth it over having a weaker piece under the truck. Is the 9" that much more expensive than beefing up the 12 or a swap over to 14SF?

    The guys that have broken the 12 bolts, I'd be curious to hear what exactly they have broken. I bet there are just as many failures that WEREN'T the axleshaft as there are axleshaft failures. Just speculating here, but maybe a few will post up on their experiences. In any case, a 14SF axleshaft alone will hold up to what a 12 bolt axleshaft will not.
     
  12. 6.2Blazer

    6.2Blazer 1/2 ton status

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    I'm sure the FF kit for the 12-bolt is a nice upgrade, but it just seems like spending $800+ doesn't make any sense. By the time you add in gears and a locker (which if you are willing to spend that much for a FF kit, I'm guessing you want gears and some sort of full locker) for the 12-bolt you will most likely have $1500-$1600 dollars in a 12-bolt!

    On the 14SF, I can't imagine how it would not be substantially stronger than a 12-bolt........larger axleshafts and ring and pinion, right?
     
  13. Bubba Ray Boudreaux

    Bubba Ray Boudreaux 1 ton status

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    Because some people just don't have the need for a boat anchor........... :D
     
  14. surpip

    surpip 1 ton status

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    But still wouldent it be cheaper, stronger to build lets say a Ford 9in?
     
  15. Bubba Ray Boudreaux

    Bubba Ray Boudreaux 1 ton status

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    It all depends on who's running their piehole in the conversation.

    I have about $750 into mine now, and I still need shafts and rotors and of course the steel to do the brace. So I'm looking at another $500 to $600 perhaps. It can be done for cheaper, but most of what I have into now is the 4.88 35 spline Spool N Case.
     
  16. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    It appears that no one actually knows what the 14SF weighs compared to a 10/12 bolt...so although it may be a boat anchor, it might be no better of one than a 10/12 bolt. I know it's heavier, but its nowhere near 14FF heavy.

    If you are talking about dragging due to 1" loss of clearance, that can't be rectified, unless you spend more $$ on bigger tires.

    Application has everything to do with what will work for each person, but in most cases, so does cost and ease.
     
  17. CyberSniper

    CyberSniper 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    A 12 bolt seems to weigh a negligible amount more than a 10 bolt. Maybe 15lbs? Carrying them around I couldn't tell the difference.

    A 14SF with the small brakes seems to weigh about 40lbs more than a 10 bolt.


    The biggest downfall of a 12 bolt is the small pinion bearings. If you can, run a 12 bolt car center section so you get bigger pinion bearings. The ring and pinion otherwise are plenty strong. 30 spline Superior axleshafts are just as strong as any stock Dana 60 rear axleshafts.

    C-clip eliminators are a waste. A caliper will keep your axle in if you break a C-clip. If you break a shaft a C-clip eliminator is going to allow the shaft wallow around inside the tube until it destroys the C-clip eliminator, just like regular wheel bearings.

    So that leaves a true full float kit complete with spindles and hubs (big money). I don't think I'd spend that much money on a half ton axle.


    I'm planning on running a 12 bolt truck axle with big tahrs. We'll see what happens.
     
  18. zcarczar

    zcarczar 1/2 ton status

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    If you guys want I will have my 14 SF out in the next week or so to swap springs and I might be able to weigh it. But it is definately heavier than the 10 bolt I took out. Although I havent broken it yet, I would rather go with a 35 spline 9" due to weight, cause I dont like unsprung weight but it works fine for the time being. I should have my long travel setup done in the back and I can actually see how much the unsprung weight is gonna effect me at speed.
     
  19. k5james

    k5james 1/2 ton status

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    That depends. For a budget build like Bubba and if you are willing to change to 5 lug you can do it on the cheap. The places I've checked, for a turn key full floating 6 lug 35 splin 9" w/ a Detroit and cmac style housing, you're looking at right around 5K. That kind of makes the $1500-1700 of a FF 12 bolt look a little better.
     
  20. zcarczar

    zcarczar 1/2 ton status

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    James, how much is a SF 35 spline 6 lug 9"?
     

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