Define 1/2 Ton, 3/4 Ton & 1 Ton

Discussion in '1969-1972 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by Greg72, Jun 12, 2001.

  1. Greg72

    Greg72 "Might As Well..." Staff Member Super Moderator

    Mar 5, 2001
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    Austin, TX
    OK....I know there are no dumb questions....but this is about as "basic" as it gets.

    Please help me understand what axles fit in each category.

    My '72 K5 came from the factory with 1/2 ton running gear....and it has a 12-bolt rear and (I think) a Dana 44 front?

    A common desireable upgrade is to use a 14-bolt rear and a Dana 60 up front....this (I think) is considered 1-Ton running gear.

    So what is 3/4 Ton? There is no such thing as a 13-Bolt Rear is there? [​IMG]....or anything between a Dana 44 and a Dana 60?

    Is a 3/4-Ton just a set of 1/2-Ton axles with beefier springs? Sorry for the question, but it makes me irritated when I can't explain it to someone.

    -> In other news...used my K5 yesterday to pull a pesky tree stump out of my backyard. Put it in 4LO and only two wheels spun....the left front, and the right rear!!!! I got's to get me some lockers!!!! [​IMG]

  2. Rasberry

    Rasberry 1/2 ton status

    Mar 30, 2001
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    Orlando, Fl
    Don't hold your breath on this one.

    The difference between 1/2, 3/4, and 1 ton axles are determined by how much weight they where designed to handle.

    The Differnce between 1/2, 3/4, and 1 ton truck its the combination of engine, suspenion, and axles. The more wieght the vehicle is designed to handle the bigger the motor, the more and stronger springs, and beefer the axles will be. I'm not trying to talk down to anyone , I'm just trying to explain as simply as I can.

    You can have a Dana 44 in 1/2 or 3/4 ton. What changes to make it 1/2 to 3/4 ton are Bigger breaks and Higher spline count. The spilne count are the groves at the ends of the axles that lock into the hub and the differntal.

    Your right there is not Corpate 13 bolt axles. GM has a 10, 12, and 14 bolt axles.

    The 10 bolt can either be 1/2 or 3/4 ton depending on the brakes and spline count.

    14 bolts are genraly rated for 1 tons, but you may find them on some 3/4 ton trucks.

    The Dana 60 is 1 ton. Its axles are much thicker and stronger than its smaller sibling the Dana 44.

    Hope this helps.

    Rasberry 71' K/5 Blazer
  3. HarryL

    HarryL 1/2 ton status

    Feb 25, 2001
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    Layton, UT (20 miles north of SLC)

    Very well stated.


  4. Chris Demartini

    Chris Demartini 1/2 ton status

    Feb 17, 2000
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    Dumont NJ 07628
    <font color=blue>For the most part that is correct, but 10 and 12 bolts were used only in 1/2 tons. The 12 bolts were all 30 spline and 10 bolts were 28 spline with the 30 spline starting in the late 80s. The 3/4 and 1 tons had 10.5" 14 bolt full floater rears which were identical with the exception of drum size and spring pad location (some 83-87 3/4 ton pickups and suburbans had the 9.5" semifloating 14 bolt, which can be set up to run 15" 6 lug wheels). For example, the only difference between a 1/2 ton 10 bolt (or dana 44 since they're pretty much the same) and a 3/4 ton 10 bolt is the wheel hub (not to be confused with the locking hub which you turn to engage the front axle), wheel bearings, and rotors. Basicly just the wheel lug count. The shafts, carriers, gears and driveshafts will interchange between 1/2 ton 10 bolts and and 3/4 ton 10 bolts (but not dana 44s and 10 bolts, the only parts that interchange between these axles are those from the knuckle out). The dana 60 began service in 77 and went up to 87 (91 in crew cab pickups) and it is the strongest front axle you can buy that will bolt up. </font color=blue>


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