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Diff armor

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by AZK5, Mar 15, 2000.

  1. AZK5

    AZK5 1/2 ton status

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    Hello. Anyone know of a company that makes thick steel differential covers, like 1/4" thick? I'm thinking about fabricating my own for the D44 and 12 bolt. I'd rather just buy them if somebody is making them. I don't really like the Rock Guards that are available.
    CB
     
  2. Waxer

    Waxer 1/2 ton status Author

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    Correct me if I'm wrong, but if you start dwelling into 1/4" thick steel diff covers, dont you start running into having the gear oil overheating. Just a thought cause I remember seeing in catalogs the aluminum finned diff covers and they advertise better cooling, etc.... Why would they advertise that if cooling wasnt important? Just a thought.
     
  3. Burt4x4

    Burt4x4 3/4 ton status

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    Have you considered the fact if the diff cover is too thick you may have temp issues?
    The ORU alluminum diff covers are said to be pretty tuff and they give you more oil capacity and cooling too.
    Good Luck
    Burt4x4

    Rock ON!
     
  4. RaisedK5

    RaisedK5 1/2 ton status

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    i would have to agree, the oil would have a tougher time cooling through 1/4" steel, i saw on some web site, while i was looking for a truss, a deal that bolted on to the holes around the bottom of the diff, then had like 1"-1 1/2" tube making a cage out in front of the diff, like a prerunner bumper for the diff, it looked pretty stout, and didn't kill ground clearance, i can't remember where i saw it but i'll try to retrace my steps, anybody out there know what i'm talking about? Or have i been sniffing fumes again?

    RaisedK5

    "Friends don't let friends drive Fords"
     
  5. OLDSTEEL

    OLDSTEEL 1/2 ton status

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    I agree with the cooling issue, if the actual cover is made of 1/4". It would be a lot better to just make a skid plate that you like the looks of, and let the diff cover alone.
     
  6. '73 K5

    '73 K5 1/2 ton status

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    I have a T/A Performance diff cover for the 12 bolt. It was expensive, but completely bulletproof. Its about 3/4 inch thick aluminum alloy, CNC machined. It has drain and fill plugs and metal "feet" that go through the housing to put pressure against the bearing caps to keep them from moving.
    As for the front axle, since it will be hitting stuff, I wanted to keep the cast iron one. I plan on using a Con-Ferr axle truss/skidplate to protect it a little more.
     
  7. Eagle86K5

    Eagle86K5 1/2 ton status

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    I recall looking at a nascar and seeing a pump and small radiator for the rear end. Seems a bit of an overkill for a 4x4....but if dissapating heat is necessary......

    <font color=green>Eagle86K5[​IMG]

    <font color=red>Only guy I know that can get out of line in a one car funeral
     
  8. AZK5

    AZK5 1/2 ton status

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    The difference in heat transfer between .1" steel (front cover) and .25" steel is negligable. The surface area is the same which makes a bigger difference. That is why they put cooling fins on some covers to increase surface area. If you put a skid plate or bars in front of the cover you will limit air flow and cooling. My differential fluid doesn't get very hot anyway, I don't tow a heavy trailer or Baja race. I smashed my rear cover crawling over rocks here in AZ. I was hoping someone made a sturdy cover I could just purchase.
    CB
     
  9. Matt N.

    Matt N. Registered Member

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    Actually, while oil does absorb heat well, it does not transfer the heat well at all. If you want to cool the rear with fins...put them on the *inside* of the cover, to give the oil more surface area to contact. The surface area on the outside fins does little to rid the oil of the heat, you need a thinner coat of oil over a larger surface to to that. See Hotrodding small block chevys for info....
     

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