Originally Posted by TTBlows
I'm struggling w this on my Ranger right now.........the problem w the leaf F250 fronts and Supercab fronts is that inner axle on the pass side is different from anything else, namely different from the far more common coil fronts. So you wind up with a kinda oddball inner shaft. Bummer if you break one.
Yea, I did a lot of reading of Mr. N. you're exactly right F250 and superc. have differernt shafts (the axle is slightly wider), actually both inners are slightly different size vs. the F150/bronco (looks to be the same size, both sides, '73-79, 33.91", 18.91"). So then I went to Superior and Warn's sites...the chromo's they carry as a standard size is for F150/Bronco, so it looks to me that these would be extra dough for something custom, probably wouldn't be that much more, but it's just an added headache, and like you say, you've got a part out on the trail that is not as easily sourced. So there is one big + going back to your suggestion of 76-77, instead, if someone were ever thinking of wanting to upgrade the shafts. As to 76-77 all is good, except as you mentioned before, you can get 3/8" or 1/2" thick tubing, but at least it's one solid tube of good thickness, vs. Bronco which ends at that cast in coil mount, and some use an inner .25" thick wall.
back to the F250/cupercab, it also appears that the part numbers at schucks for Ford hub/rotor are all the same for say an '85 bronco, '78 supercab, and '77 F150, but not for my '95. It may just be that my toner ring is the difference, and it would still fit, or it may not.
Mr. N's article did state that you cannot use the HD knuckles (flattops, F250) with 5 lug spindle/hub/rotor. So my thought of using the HD knuckles for strength, ability to swap to 8 lug later if I wanted, and potential high steer, is shot. I would have to buy everyhting knuckle out down the road it I later wanted to say swap a 10.25 in the rear. Mr. N also tended to advise away from the F150 supercab knuckle in that although it was flattop, it's just an odd duck, and certain parts may or may not interchange.
Bottom line, if you want to stick with 5 lug stuff, a 76-77 seems to be the easiest ticket. You could do a highsteer, but you have to tread down the Chev/GM path. If you later wanted to do 8 lug, there would be a lot of knuckle out swapping going on, expensive. And way too many decisions to be made. so chalk one up for the D60, at least you don't have to think about all this mix and match.