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Some assembly required!
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I've heard several people talk about adding a VSS to a D60 rear axle, but it was kind of hard to find much good info on it. We just put a spooled D60 w/ 4.56 gears in Johnski's '96, so obviously he was going to need to add a VSS. I'm going to skip the gear set up part, that's all pretty well covered elsewhere. Here are some parts you'll need.

1 VSS Sensor, this one is Motorcraft.


1 Tone ring, from Ford


First thing go ahead and set up the gears like you normally would. Here is the full spool with 4.56 gears in all its glory. Hard to beat a full spool for simplicity.:thumbup


This inside tooth on the tone ring has to go, grind it off. There is no slot on the spool to engage it.


Here is the tone ring sitting on the spool, and it's not really easy to see in this pic, but there is a .080" gap between the inside of the tone ring and the spool. This is where the tricky part starts.


So here's the trick: you've got to tack weld the tone ring to the spool. The problem is the tone ring has to be perfectly centered on the spool. Heat from the weld drawing the ring to one side was also a concern. You can use any meathod you wish to acomplish this, but I ended up centering the tone ring by using some left over carrier shims and I used several clamps around the perimeter of the ring to minimize movement during welding.


I know, it kind of looks like Frankenstein's monster, but to keep weld slag out of the bearings I wrapped them in damp rags. They only caught fire a little.


So when you have that whole PITA set up, tack weld it in place. Here is how mine came out. Mine ended up being centered to within .002" using this meathod. Not as good as I wanted, but it works fine so the proofs in the pudding I guess.


Okay, it's all down hill from here.;) Now that you have a tone ring, you need to mount the VSS sensor. At this point the project started moving a little faster and I took fewer pics. Sorry. Put the carrier back in the diff housing and mark a line following the tone ring. I used this as the center point for drilling my holes, when it was all said and done I wish I had moved that line 1/4" to the left because it would have put the VSS sensor more centered on the tone ring, but in practice it didn't matter, this worked out fine. The body of the VSS sensor is .8" My biggest drill bit was 3/4", so I drilled a 3/4" hole and then expanded it with a sanding drum on my die grinder.


So here is the VSS sitting in the diff housing all fat, dumb and happy, right? WRONG! Turns out that with it sitting at this depth it will not only hit the tone ring, you can't even put the carrier back in it sits so deep. We needed to make a spacer.


Turns out that by a happy coincidence some of the 3/8" scrap steel I had lying around was the perfect thickness for the spacer. Drilled a couple more holes, traced the VSS sensor onto the metal, fired up the plasma cutter and in a few minutes I had this sweet spacer. Don't hate me because my tools are beautiful.:toothless



Next order of business, drill a hole for the VSS mounting bolt & tap it. You don't really need to drill this hole all the way through the diff housing like I did, I just didn't have a bottoming tap, so I went all the way through. IIRC I made that one a 5/16" hole. Sorry for the blurry pic. In this pic you can sort of see how I did a bad job of centering the VSS sensor over the tone ring too.


And here is the whole thing assembled. If I had it to do over I would have went ahead and welded the spacer to the top of the diff housing. We didn't at the time because we were thinking of making a second, thicker spacer. That is why those ugly shims are stuck in there in this pic, we were testing the VSS sensor depth. In the final assembly neither a thicker spacer or the shims were needed, it turns out that making the spacer 3/8" thick worked out perfectly.


Sorry I don't have a pic of the final assembly. Maybe Johnski will throw one on here for us.

A few more notes on this thing;

-When assembling this you need to shoot for very minimal clearance between the VSS sensor and the tone ring. On this one they damn near touch. We tried a .030" clearance with the shims and the speedo acted whacky, try to make them very close.

-If I do it again I will weld on a 1/2" spacer on top of the diff and then grind it down incrementally it get my sensor to tone ring clearance perfect.

-Obviously I had to slather this thing in Permatex to keep it from leaking. I suspect that welding the spacer, not going all the way through the diff housing with the mounting bolt, and maybe putting a fatter o-ring around the sensor would have made this a lot cleaner.

-I can't really reccomend the drilling a 3/4" hole and hogging it out with a sanding drum meathod of making a .8" hole. Go find a .8" drill bit somewhere and make your life that much easier.

-In retrospect, I probably should have put a 56k warning on this. Oops.
 

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Former owner of Shadofax
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Stokes said:
i think jonski said it was still 30spline.
yea.

The other thing to keep in mind is what made this much more difficult is the spool.

If you have a detroit, like mine is, the toner ring (I hope ford didn't bend you over on that one since it's made by spicer and can be had for under $8) goes right on newer detroits since the key is machined into the detroit. no spacing, no welding, nothing, just press the toner on the carrier.

mine leaked a little up top too, but slathering of JB weld around the spacers and that was fixed, hasn't leaked since.

good writeup. oh yea, I have the actual max. spec of the toner to sensor clearance somewhere, but your right, it needs to be right down on it. Think mine is set at .8 of 1mm
 

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Nice writeup dave. That's one impressive axle you have there. It must be under some INCREDIBLE rig.:toothless
The original coating of RTV left a small leak that was solved with a much larger goop of RTV all the way around the base of the spacer. You can sortof see it here...


I'll post a better pic when I get a chance.
 

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Some assembly required!
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·

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bearfoot_25 said:
Congrats on finally getting the axle upgrade, now we just gotta get you a SAS for that thing so you can run for FSOM again and win this time!!!!!!!!
I'm thinking you have a bit of a head start on that one. My front 60 won't be happening for at least a few years. Maybe a TTB can still rock the FOTM again someday.
 

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TTB Hater of course
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Yeah, why was this difficult to find info on? Didn't Shadofax beat this to death quite awhile ago?? And in fact, didn't NOBS post some very helpful pics of this even before that??

Gee, now if only if I could find out if 33's will fit on my stock Bronco......
 

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Dangling_Dave said:
Great writeup! Hmmm that gets me to thinking about a 14 bolt again...

dc
What happened to the D70?



KL, yes, Nobs did this before me, but did no real writeup (I was PMing him for info), and also did not drill a hole up top but into the diff cover. Kurt H. did this too, but used an 8.8 toner welded to the carrier bolts, didn't like that either, but there was info. to be found on it.

EDIT: forgot to mention, yesterday I was speaking with the owner of a local 4x4 shop here because I noticed on his web page his newer Dodge 2500 was listed as having D60/D60 and the rear was 35 spline with some type of aftermarker carrier (can't remember which).....anyway, I asked him about the spindle boring and if he thought that was ok, he set me straight that he didn't need to bore, the newer dodge spindles are big enough to accept 35 spline shafts. So, not that I'm going to go out and do this right now, but if I can come up with any more info. in terms of specifics on this spindle and how easy/tough it might be to replace stock D60 spindles I'll post up. Would love to have a 35 spline D60, just don't wanna bore my spindles to do so. Maybe someone more familiar with dodges can shed some light.
 

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TTBlows said:
Yeah, why was this difficult to find info on? Didn't Shadofax beat this to death quite awhile ago?? And in fact, didn't NOBS post some very helpful pics of this even before that??

Gee, now if only if I could find out if 33's will fit on my stock Bronco......
Not bagging on anyone elses writeups, but they didn't go into the exact detail that Dave did above. His writeup leaves virtually nothing to question regarding the setup of the VSS and tone ring.
 

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johnski said:
Not bagging on anyone elses writeups, but they didn't go into the exact detail that Dave did above. His writeup leaves virtually nothing to question regarding the setup of the VSS and tone ring.
Assuming one is strictly interested in a spool. Otherwise much of the detail is N/A since other carriers are much easier to setup (just push the toner on).
 

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Shadofax said:
Assuming one is strictly interested in a spool. Otherwise much of the detail is N/A since other carriers are much easier to setup (just push the toner on).
potayto, potahto...tomayto, tomahto, blah blah blah:goodfinge
 

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johnski said:
potayto, potahto...tomayto, tomahto, blah blah blah:goodfinge
learn to spell teach. :goodfinge

I bet all your pupils draw pictures of monster WHITE Broncos with soft tops.:goodfinge :goodfinge :shocked :histerica
 

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Shadofax said:
learn to spell teach. :goodfinge

I bet all your pupils draw pictures of monster WHITE Broncos with soft tops.:goodfinge :goodfinge :shocked :histerica
No, they've learned to fear the oj bronco from their parents.:goodfinge :toothless
 

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johnski said:
No, they've learned to fear the oj bronco from their parents.:goodfinge :toothless
Yet the parentals deem it "ok" that a Vin Diesel looking dude is teaching their kids?:toothless :goodfinge ;)
 

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Engineer
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BTT, great write up. I was hoping the pics could get updated so we (I) can reference it in the future
 
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