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271 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I stole this from a Mustang site I frequent. Since A Body rears are so hard to find thought some of you might be interested although I cannot vouch for the accuracy of any of this info. The guys on this site typically know what they're doing, though. Also, I have a '69-70 Mustang 9-inch in my garage and the spring pads are very close to the same width as the ones on my '67 Valiant 7.25 rear although the rear is wider overall. I'm guessing a 9-inch out of a '65-'66 Mustang would be a direct bolt-in. 0/


All of the following has come from various sites:

These measurements are from flange to flange. Subtract 5" for bare housing length.

65-66 Mustang 57.25 inches
67-70 Mustang 59.25 inches
71-73 Mustang 61.25 inches
77-81 Versailles 58.50 inches
74 Maverick 8" 56.50 inches
75 Mustang II 8" 57.00 inches
67-73 Mustang, Torino, Ranchero, Fairlane 9" 59.25 inches to 61.25 inches
57-59 Ranchero and station wagon rears, 57.25 inches
66-77 Bronco 9", 58 inches
77-81 Granada/Versailles, 58 inches
67-71 Comet, Cougar, Mustang, Fairlane, 59.25 inches
71-73 Mustang, 61.25 inches
64 Falcon 58 inches
67 Cougar 60 inches
67 Fairlane 63.50 inches (coil springs)
72 Ford Van 3/4 ton 68 inches
73-86 65.25 inches
57-59 Ranchero and station wagon 57.25 iches (narrowest 9" housing)
66-77 Bronco 58 inches but has 5-on-5 1/2 inch diameter bolt circle
67-73 Torinos, Rancheros, Fairlanes 59.25 inches or 61.25 inches
67-71 Comets, Cougars, Fairlanes 59.25 inches

Where to find the 9" rear axle

67-73 medium and big block Mustangs and Cougars
66-71 Fairlanes, Torinos, Montegos, Comets, and other Ford intermediates
with big blocks
57-59 V8 Fords and Mercurys
77-81 Lincoln Versailles & Trucks

Type of 9" axle housings

67-73 Mustang/Cougar - light duty, thinnest housing material, small axle
bearings, 28 and 31 splines
57-68 passenger car and 1/2 ton truck - medium duty, stronger than Mustang
type, 28 and 31 splines
Ranchero/Torino - heavy duty thick wall housing, 3.25 inch diameter axle
tubes with flat tops
69-77 Galaxies (coils), Lincolns (coils), and late pickups (leaf)- 3.25
inch diameter all the way to the backing plate, coil housings have upper
control arm mount

How to recognize 9" housing centers

57 - no dimples, flat center band up the center of the rear cover, bottom
drain plug
58-59 - two dimples on back of housing, flat center band, some had drain holes
60-67 - two dimples, flat center band, oil level hole in back cover
63-77 Lincoln, LTD, Thunderbirds had 9.375 inch centers, housings were cut
away at the gasket surface for ring gear clearance, one curved rib at the front
top portion of differential. Strong, but no gears.

Types of 9" Axles

28 spline axles cannot be shortened and resplined (they're tapered)
Some can: 69-73 Mustang and Cougars have a straight 28 spline axle.
72 and earlier 31 spline axles have the ability to be shortened
73 and later 9" (big cars) have a 5-on-5 bolt circle and the axles cannot be
67-73 Mustang axles identified by wheel flange:
oval hole - 28 splines two large holes and counter sunk center - 31 splines

Various informative web sites:

Versailles Swap:

94 Posts
If you go with a 9" that bolts in, check the location of the pinion. A ford offset is different than a Mopar. I bought a 9" housing that was being under a 74 dart sport after an axle broke on the line. When I put it in my duster I noticed that the pinion was too far to the side and the driveshaft would have run at an angle. In the end I took another housing to Moser in Indiana and had it cut to the dimensions of a stock A body.

128 Posts
I may be in a similar situation, if you don't mind me asking, what's the average you can expect to spend to have a housing and axles shortened?



94 Posts
I had right around $500.00 wrapped up in the package. Current pricing is $110.00 to shorten the housing, $100.00 for bearings and studs, and $315.00 for axles. I didn't think $500.00 to narrow a rear with axles was too bad of a price. In Ohio most people want a minimum of $375 for an A-Body 8-3/4 axle, then you either have to re-drill the axles which doesn't leave much metal left or buy new axles with the 4.5 bolt pattern for $300 and change for a total of $675 - ish.
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