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Old 06-25-2011, 01:15 PM
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Proper rear end width for 1934 Ford

Im building a 34 ford and Im trying to find out what is the width that the rear end should be. Ive got a 9 ford thats 57 axle to axle. Rear end shops tell me to center the wheels and tires in the fender and measure the width between them. However the problem is the body is off the frame, the fenders are stored off-site and I dont know what wheels Im going to use as styles keep changing and who knows how long till I get it on the road. Maybe some can tell me what length they have under theres. Id appreciate any thoughts.

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Old 06-25-2011, 01:22 PM
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rear '34

if memory serves me..my T bucket is 54" on the axle tubes and your frame is a little wider then mine is.. so i feel you are in a good number... u can make up alot with back spacing. so good luck for i was gonna build a '34 also till it started looking at how much stuff cost for that car... thats gotta be one of the highest priced cars to build..
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Old 06-28-2011, 10:44 AM
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has anyone out there put one in a '34 that remembers the actual width?
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Old 07-01-2011, 06:22 AM
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A lot depends on the manufacture....kit car or original Ford. If the body is an exact reproduction in fiberglass, then the max tire size that will fit under the rear fenders without rubbing is 255/70 R15. On the front I used 205/55 R15 and that depends on how far up in the wheel well you run the suspension. Hard turns and the tire will rub. Check my photo album for pics on this setup.

I don't remember the width of the 9" Ford rear in my 34, but you can measure your body for the inside tire width and go from there. As for "fixing" it with the wheel backspacing, you should decide on the wheels you want to use now because there is a min/max backspace for each wheel design....check with the wheel manufactures.

If I were you I would not depend on rear end width specs that may have worked on someone else's body, especially fiberglass bodies. Measure the body you have and be sure. Hope this helps.

Jim
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Old 07-01-2011, 08:30 AM
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My '33/34 9" Ford measures 54" outside rotor to rotor with disc's (rotor outside braking surface, wheels mounted - all I can get to w/o dismounting wheels), my wheels have 3.75" backspace and I have right at 1" of clearance tire inner sidewall to body running 285/70R15's, but mine is a fiberglass highboy coupe true to OEM dimensions - no fenders to worry with. Like FordSR says, this is a critical measurement, and you need to measure your body, know that you can get the wheel backspace needed, and get the tire sidewall measurement of the largest you'll run to ensure fit, especially if you're running fenders.
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Old 07-01-2011, 03:59 PM
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Thanks guys. One more question. i took the 9" ford rear end to a shop similar to Curries and the guy showed me how the housing is warped and the axle splines are starting to twist because of the high torque that the previous owner excreted on them and he said it would probably cost more to repair that it's worth. I happen to have an 8" ford rear end sitting in my shed. Would that be a good replacement as Im not concerned about breaking the 8 as Im only running a pretty much stock 350 c.i. Chevy, or am I better of sticking with a 9 because of the wow factor as I plan on selling it a year or two after its finished.
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Old 07-01-2011, 04:32 PM
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You should consider the type of suspension you plan to use and the amount of fabrication on the housing to accomodate that AND the investment you will have in the fabrication on the 8". For me, it's about the investment and the value and payback when you sell it. If you're like me and most rodders, you tire of the '34 after awhile and long to build something else and move on. Funny how we build 'em and sell 'em. I guess for me it's the building that blows my dress up, but each to their own. Here's how I would decide. You will need new axles....28 or 31 spline. Are you planning on using a TracLoc or similar differential lockup? If so it will be axle dependant (spline). I would find a 9" housing, cut it to fit, buy 31 spline axles, since you will need new axles anyway. Even if you don't plan on a TracLoc, the new owner will think, all I have to do to make this a screamer is add a TracLok, add a little HP to the engine and I can make this into a real "wild machine".

I always consider my investment versus the "Getting out" value and what it's worth in the resale market. This policy helps me fund my next project. It works for me and I suggest you consider the potential. Remember at some point someone will be selling your '34, either you or your heirs. Not trying to be harsh here but I'm almost your age and it's something to consider. I certainly do!

Jim
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Old 07-01-2011, 05:16 PM
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I kind of think the same way. I build my cars or house remodel the way I like, but I also want to do it the way most buyers would like it so I can recoup as much of the cost as possible. The guy at the rear end shop seams to think that it would not make much difference if I use a 9 or 8. It just that the 8 I have is also 57 wide wheel to wheel. With the 9 I would have to get the housing straightened and I would use the axles out of the 8 as the are the same length and splines (28 small bearings). I dont plan on anything fancy like posi or anything like that. I think the 9 sounds better, but maybe thats just me.
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Old 07-01-2011, 05:36 PM
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The 9" will be much more of an asset than using an 8". Consider calling John's Rear Ends and getting a housing and axles built to the width you need out of the chute. Like fordSR says, you can add a TracLoc, or someone later can look at it and say "..it's ready to go for higher HP." Getting the flange to flange width right for your application is a huge deal, IMO, and I would not consider investing my money in trying to fix a warped housing, but that's just me....
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Old 07-01-2011, 07:14 PM
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The 8" would work fine - but getting parts is no longer as easy as the tried and true 9" which is serviced by many, many suppliers. An internet search will come up with many who can build the exact width you need instead of using something worn/rusted to junk. I'm using the "original", a '57 @57.25", the narrowest OEM, but it's in pretty good shape for being 54 years old.

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