Integral Carrier Type Axle
The rear axle is a integral type housing, hypoid design, with the centerline of the pinion set below the centerline of the ring gear. The semi floating axle shafts are set in the housing by ball bearings and a bearing retainer on each of the axle ends. The differential assembly is mounted on two opposed tapered roller bearings. These bearings are retained and have removable caps. The differential bearing preload is adjusted by nuts located behind each bearing cup. The drive pinion assembly is mounted on two opposed tapered roller bearings also. The pinion preload is adjusted by a collapsible spacer on the pinion shaft. The pinion and ring gear tooth contact is adjusted by shims between the rear bearing cone and pinion gear.
AS cover on the rear of the differential housing provides access for inspection and the removal and installation of the differential and drive pinion.
Removable Carrier Type
The rear axle is of the banjo-housing, hypoid gear type, in which the centerline of the pinion is mounted below the centerline of the ring gear. The integral pinion gear, shaft and pinion bearings are assembled in a pinion retainer, which is bolted to the carrier. The pinion is a straddle mounted type, which means, the pinion is supported by bearings both in the front and the rear of the pinion gear. A pilot bearing supports the pinion shaft at the rear of the pinion gear. The pinion and ring gear tooth contact is adjusted by shims between the pinion retainer and the carrier housing. The differential assembly is mounted on two opposed roller bearings, which are retained in the carrier by removable caps. The whole carrier is bolted to the axle housing. The rear wheel bearings are pressed onto the outer ends of the axle shafts and set in the outer ends of the axle housing. These bearings support the semi-floating axle shafts at the outer ends. The inner ends of the shafts spline to the differential side gears. The bearing retainer plates hold the shafts in the housing. The left and right axle shafts are not interchangeable. The left shaft is shorter than the right.
Limited Slip Differential Axle
See Figure 1
The limited slip differential is an option in both the integral and removable carrier type axles. The axle assembly, excluding the differential case and its internal components, is identical to the conventional axle. A constant friction locking differential, which has an automatic transmission type clutch plates to control the differential action. There are four steel clutch plates that are locked into the differential cover. Three bronze, bonded clutch plates that are splined to the left-hand axle shaft. A Belleville spring washer maintains a constant pressure between the steel and bonded clutch plates so that the clutch is always engaged.
The pressure between the clutch plates opposes the differential action at all times. When the car turns a corner the clutch will then slip allowing a normal action in the differential to take place. In bad weather conditions, where one or both of the wheels may be on a low traction surface, the friction between the clutch plates will transfer a portion of the usable torque to the wheel with the most traction. So which ever wheel is on the ice or snow, etc. will not spin, but will operate with the opposite wheel in a combined driving effort.