Now on to the rear…I removed the stock axle to go with a later year axle that was more highway friendly. At the time, I did not know that have swapped out the 4.11’s for a set of 3.55’s gears. I originally got a 1980s G-Body rear axle but it appeared too narrow which would be perfect if I were to run offset wire wheels. But my plan was to stick with stock steel wheels with 5.60s, 15in wheels. We happened to have another rear axle off a ’72 Chevelle. It had a 2.73 gear ratio Positraction which I thought was overkill for this cruiser but I was sold on the 2.73 gear ratio. I was planning on a 350/350 combo. As I stated earlier, I decided to go from the stock leaf springs to a triangulated 4-link rear suspension – I wanted this car low. After doing some research online, I came across suicidedoors.com (www.thorbros.com) where they offered a lot of suspension components. I gave the Thorbecke Brothers my dimensions to keep the 45º degrees for the top bars (from axle tube to frame rail). I also got their C-Notch kit which installed really nice. I used the Henrob 2000 Cut-Like-Plasma torch to cut the
“C” in the rear and I really needed to practice on something else. My “C” cut wasn’t as clean as I wanted it. I also used a plumb bob to center things up and retain the stock wheel base as well as setting the ride height to 3” from the bottom of the frame to the top of the axle tube. I was going to use 8” cylinders but have since switched to 6”. Pinion angle was set at +2º.
At this point in time, because of the V8 to inline 6 swap, I obtained a new rear axle with 3.08 gears off a ’66 Chevelle. I have also decided on a 2-link rear set-up to prevent further cutting into the sheet metal under the seat.
4-link from Suicide Doors
rear end mock up
First bracket mocked up
The G-Body Rear End – Too narrow for my taste
Squaring Things Up!
Welded Powerballs behind the axle for Coil Over Set Up
Yes – The Bridge is WAYYYY to big and tall. I ended up using
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Setting Pinion Angle – referenced from a suspension/chassis book