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Old 05-16-2003, 04:33 AM
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Post 9 inch housing too weak.

I just became the head welder/fabricator for a friend who runs a sponsered pro arena truck.
He keeps breaking 9 inch housings, hasn't started the season full bore yet and he has 4 axles on the trailer with one on the truck to go through before my job starts.
He breaks the axle housings on the landings, the truck has 23 inches of full rear axle suspension travel and the highest he has gone is 13 feet and land.
Upon landing he bends (sometimes breaks) the housing tubes which also angles the shafts in the carrier, trust me this don't look pretty inside or out.
He has the shafts and carrier supplied, but has had the housing fabricated.
The last welder used a stock housing and welded gussets and supports, I am thinking a severely shortened axle assembly permanently mounted to the frame with CV shafts and independant rear suspension would break some chromemoly but not the bank.
He is concerned with the added weight, but I don't think his 700 horse balls to the wall 460 will notice, plus he will have added stability with the independant rear.
I can re-use the nitro charged coilovers, and 1-ton front axle spindles, hubs, etc.,and a three link to each side.
I can't convince him to let me do it because he thinks it's more apt to break and keep him from finishing.
He isn't the winner of most races he enters, but his points total is enough to keep him in the top five at the end of the year, he just say keep him in axles for the year and he will go from there.
I also have a couple sponsors to convince, and I think this is a good idea.
I don't want to use a solid axle, unless I can get it to properly stay straight with his landings.
Anyone else have an idea or suggestion.

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Old 05-16-2003, 07:56 AM
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aside from going to 2 and 1/2 ton military axles you should try, if you haven't already, a long triangular piece of solid steel plate running on each side of the punkin to the end of the axle, welded the entire length of the housing. i.e. a solid big long axle truss, if you will
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Old 05-16-2003, 12:44 PM
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He won't change rear axle type from a ford 9 inch, as the gear sets and nodular gear carrier are paid for items courtesy of one of the sponsors.
A military axle of that size would be nearly impossible to re-gear to what he needs, as he has to swap carriers at a couple different tracks to stay competetive. Besides it would be too heavy for his existing suspension set-up.
I have seen them re-gear the axle in between runs, and fifteen minutes to do it with the existing 9 inch is easy since they don't have to set-up the gears, just swap out the carrier.
The welder they had last year had used c-channel, angle iron, and cut steel plates and gussets, but not the full length gusset for some reason.
Can't ask him why since he is with a competitor, and frankly don't want to ask him anyway as I didn't like the looks of some of his work.
Most of the time I will not be at the track so whatever I do will have to be good before he goes, as he has gone through three axles in a weekend before.
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Old 05-16-2003, 02:42 PM
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There are a couple of things I would suggest. First if not done already (which I would surely think it has been) he needs a 2x3 inch gusset from flange to flange. Second would be to add a tube support to the top and bottom of the housing. I would use 3/4 inch id schedule 40 pipe. First weld a piece of pipe to the top and bottom of the housing. Then heat and bend the pipe down to the flange area of the housing and weld it down.

Chris
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Old 05-16-2003, 04:26 PM
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I agree with Turbo. That type of set-up would drastically increase the strength with minimal added weight.
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Old 05-17-2003, 03:51 AM
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UH, schedule 40 is a pvc plastic plumbing pipe. Isn't it?
I am going to try a support on top of the axle housing first, the 2X3 inch bent to the contour of the housing and fully welded end to end seems to be what will do the job.
Next will be a gusset on the bottom, but I would think the top first, I still want to keep the weight down.
From there will be another thing.

[ May 17, 2003: Message edited by: M&M CUSTOM ]</p>
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Old 05-17-2003, 04:51 AM
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Scheule 40 pipe is approx. 1/4 thick wall mild steel pipe. Dirt cheap at your local metal yard.

Think about the bracing for a second: The bottom pipe brace will be more benifitial in what you are trying to do. The axle tubes are being pushed up, so I would think that the bottom tube would be more effective in resisting this bending. As for weight, you are talking about 7 or 8 lbs per piece of pipe. Not much for the amount of strength it will add. If pipe wil span more than 12 inches, I would also add a gussett from the housing to the center of the pipe. It will keep the pipe from bending under force.

Chris


[quote]Originally posted by M&M CUSTOM:
<strong>UH, schedule 40 is a pvc plastic plumbing pipe. Isn't it?
I am going to try a support on top of the axle housing first, the 2X3 inch bent to the contour of the housing and fully welded end to end seems to be what will do the job.
Next will be a gusset on the bottom, but I would think the top first, I still want to keep the weight down.
From there will be another thing.

[ May 17, 2003: Message edited by: M&M CUSTOM ]</strong><hr></blockquote>
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Old 05-17-2003, 06:36 AM
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Use seamless mechanical tubing instead of pipe, we are hot rodders not farmers. :p

Think I-beam with a 9" inch pumpkin grafted into the center with caps on the ends to box the beam. Using 3"X1/8" flat bar for the flange and 8"X1/8" for the web should be plenty strong and light. Square tubing placed vertically for the web has been done before and is easier to fabricate. Boxing is good too instead of the I-beam shape and might be the easiest shape to fabricate around your housing, just don't get carried away with thick material.

Starting with one of <a href="http://www.currieenterprises.com/html/custom/housings/rearendhousingstrack9.htm" target="_blank">these</a> wouldn't hurt either.
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Old 05-17-2003, 05:46 PM
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Thanks 4 JAW for the Currie site link BUT we will lose sponsorship for our gear sets if we don't fab our own rear housings.
And TurboS10 I have yet to build the mental picture of your pipe solving my problem.
I feel I need full axle length support rather than third member support.
The last weld jockey only used 1/2 inch rod, or 2 inch flat steel, obviously this method didn't work.
I failed to mention what happens to his housings,
upon landings his four link rod/nitro shock common mounting area act as a pivot point.
With the excessive downforce of the truck when landing the weakest point has been the center gear housing...
(1)truck goes down, (2)dirt don't move, (3)wheels and tires don't want to move, (4)axle tubes break near gear case and put gear housing in the dirt.
The axle looks like a "V" when it goes.
I am thinking of using 2X4 tubing on top now and intigrate the mounts to this top support, I am now also thinking on box-gusseting the bottom of the axle full length.

[ May 17, 2003: Message edited by: M&M CUSTOM ]</p>
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Old 05-17-2003, 07:41 PM
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If you are looking at the back of the housing, you will add a 2x3 inch brace from flange to flange. It will be made from two pieces each running from the center of the pumpkin to the axle flange. Stil looking from the back, you would form a piece of tubing or pipe(I schedule 40 is plenty strong and 10 times cheaper) that runs from one flange up over the pumpkin and back down to the other flange. Then a gusset or two between the area left between the axle tubes and the brace. You will weld to the flange and top of the housing. Then do the same thing on the bottom. I am recommending this, because I have seen it work. A friend of mine fabricated bracing like this on a oem housing for in a door car with a 1500 HP Nitrous Engine. It worked until the car went in the wall. Different application, but very similiar forces at work.

I also like Chucks idea with the Ibeam in place of the tubing. You could also use more 2x3 tubing on top and bottom just the same as it is on the back. If you have not seen a back brace like this I will put one in my album of the one I built for my S-10.

Chris
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