The question on narrowing rear end housings seems to come up a lot and the right answer seems to be that you need a jig (or a professional shop) to do it right. I'm thinking of trying it at home anyway.
I got a Ford 9" housing (for free) that is pretty beat up - it has cuts THROUGH the bottoms of the housing tubes where someone hacked off spring perches and shock mounts. The way I figure, if I were just to weld them up I would most likely warp the housing anyway, so I think I'll try my hand at shortening or replacing the tubes altogether. Then I can post whatever I learn here.
When I searched this board I found that someone recommended inserting a steel bar through the end of the housing to keep everything aligned while welding. Is there a reason an old pair of axle shafts wouldn't work?
On the web page below the writer used a sleeve inside of the axle tube as well as the steel bar method:
I'm taking any advice anyone might have before I start hacking on this thing. Thanks!