Saturday, February 23, 2013

Axles welded

A trip to Precision Drive in Dubuque, IA and 30 new needle bearings latter, problem solved! Now I can get to the business of welding the cut axles together.

The drivers side axles are solid steel. The plan is to chamfer one axle end for a butt weld. Then make a steel sleeve to slide over the weld joint and weld it to the axle for more strength.

I bored out the I.D. of a piece of double strength pipe to be used as the sleeve.

Solid axle (driver side) assembly mating the Omni transmission end to Dodge Caravan wheel end.

Since the passenger side axle of the Caravan was a tube I made two bushings to fit over the solid Omni axle and then slid the Caravan axle over it.  Preheating the higher carbon axles was required to prevent under bead cracking and the results looks very good. Only time and the test of applied torque will tell.

With the power train pretty much done I will now move on to the battery box. For this conversion all 16 six volt batteries will be in a single pack located just behind the front seats of the van.  Should be interesting.

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