2Loose Willy's axle narrowing page, this was done on April 27, 2009, the whole job took about 4 hours. Part of this time was to set up the jig alignment process.

With this axle the spring pads did not match the frame rails very well, and I wanted to mount the leaf springs directly under the frame rails. Also the wheels stick out from under the front fenders a bit, if I take 3-1/4" out of the axle it will put the spring pads directly under the frame rails, and the outer edge of the tires will sit just under the lip of the fenders. I will take that out of the middle of the axle. Will cut and weld with a Z pattern in the center, like so:

I needed to jig this axle so the cuts could be realigned to keep the axle straight after the cut and weld procedure. Angle iron was welded to the axle spring pads, with the axle laid out at 45 degrees across one corner of my welding table. The table is 3/4" thick steel and has absolutely square corners. The angle iron was aligned with the edges of the welding table as shown. The axle and the pieces were clamped tightly to the welding table, and the welds were done a bit at a time over time to keep everything cool and eliminate any warping or pulling from excess heat.

A shameless plug for our hot rod group, the Old Dudes, Maui.....

After the alignment pieces were welded on, the axle and attached pieces were set up in the chop saw and cuts were carefully made.

A cutting torch was used to seperate the center link after the other six cuts were made.

Then the metal to be removed was carefully cut out from each piece using a sawzall, and the final fit was carefully worked up a little at a time using a grinder and a steel straight edge.

The cut areas were carefully mitered on each side with a grinder, leaving about a 1/16" to 1/32" wide face at the center to match up, and a nice "V" on each side to fill in with weld.

A Miller 251 mig was used with 0.035" wire and a 75/25 argon/co2 gas mix. The welds were done to fill up to the original surface and slightly above. The welding was done very slowly, a spot at a time, using opposite locations and jumping back and forth until the whole thing had been filled in with weld. Then the welds were ground back down level with the original surface. The original forged parting line was also ground down just enough to smooth over the surface, top and bottom. Bet ya can't spot the weld area, it has blended in nicely with the original surface. This axle is forged steel, and is very nice quality. It is a pleasure to work with material like this 1959 Ford material!

A little more smoothing and some paint and it will be good to go.

More later......

Here's some links to more pix:

Back to the Front Axle page one

Some Fitting of Tires, Wheels, Axles, Etc.

Reworking an Olds 425 to take a 6-71 huffin on it.

Trial fit for the 6-71, a Don Hampton special.

Did Some Porting Work on some Edelbrock Olds Heads

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