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Posted By: SWEET NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Tue May 20 2014 10:57 PM
Back in 2006, my pinion bearings failed and presented an opportunity to overhaul the torque tube and install new 3:55 ring and pinion.

During the install, I was frustrated with the installation instructions and took photos of each step along the way. I had always wanted to take the time and write a supplement to those instructions.

Well after 7 years of testing my work and many many miles of driving my truck, I have completed the article and it is now available in the technical articles.

Here is a link to the article in TECH TIPS:

I want to thank everyone that took time to review and help me correct errors or add technical information I didn't know.

Enjoy!

Posted By: Peggy M Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Wed May 21 2014 12:23 AM
Want to thank Chris also. This was a good tip. Good photos and instructions. *My* first time to use the Bolt Bucket to layout the photos for a slide show "preview."

Thanks Chris. Hope it will be helpful to many.

Peg
Posted By: tclederman Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Wed May 21 2014 12:31 AM

Very nice, SWEET, Thanks
Posted By: Allen Lane Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Wed May 21 2014 03:48 AM
Thanks Chris for filling an important hole in the tech tips for AD trucks.
Question. What do you do about the speedometer? It would read wrong.

John
Posted By: SWEET Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Wed May 21 2014 02:32 PM
A ratio adapter is needed to re-calibrate the speedo.
Posted By: Steve_H Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Wed May 21 2014 04:39 PM
Thanks! Nice with the pictures and comments. smile
Yeah I saved me a copy of the article.... I'm on the fence on whether to try this or not....

John
Posted By: BLUEMEANIE Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Thu May 22 2014 09:05 PM
Now that I have my Saginaw in, I'll be adding the 3.55 gear asap! Thanks for such a great write up SWEET!
Posted By: Peggy M Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Sat May 24 2014 01:20 PM
We didn't do a half-ton swap but something similar to the 1-ton. What a difference. As Chris calls it, "John has a 70 MPH smile on his face when he drives."

We are not the last person in the convoy anymore.

Peg
Posted By: SWEET Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Sat May 24 2014 02:27 PM
Sir Charlie is a trailer queen no more.....

An accomplishment I know John is quite proud of.

So am I!!!!

Posted By: Jim1953 Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Fri Jun 06 2014 05:34 PM
I have the original 4 speed tranny with the granny low first gear and a 4.11 out back. If I swap the 4.11 for the 3.55, how will it help me with my highway speed and gas mileage? Also, I know it will lower the engine RPM's, but do you know by how much? How much does it throw off the speedometer?
Posted By: tclederman Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Fri Jun 06 2014 07:56 PM

4.11/3.55 = 1.16 = 16% lower RPM

That would throw off the speedometer by 16%

Ratio adapters for the speedometer can be made for $75-$125
Only problem I see with the article is you need a buddy to do the project......

John
Posted By: tclederman Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Mon Jun 09 2014 12:13 AM
Originally Posted by Whitelightning
Only problem I see with the article is you need a buddy to do the project......

John
Actually, I think that is a bonus.

Two heads are better than one - double checking all the steps and adjustments. Also, some of the parts are unwieldy - two people make for safer work.
Posted By: ponder48 Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Mon Feb 15 2016 02:02 AM
Does anyone offer a higher speed gear set than the 3:55? I plan to change the gears when the engine is swapped out in my 41 Special Deluxe. BTW, I hope no one is offended by my use of Stovebolt for my car instead of a truck. The info here is better than I've seen at any other site.
Posted By: Achipmunk Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Mon Feb 15 2016 02:39 AM
I got a set of 3.38 from Yukon for my 52 panel which I had put a 59 pumpkin in it. It whines some.....they made that set good but the second set was horrendous. I put the first set back in it. Just how my luck goes.
Posted By: 52Carl Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Tue Feb 16 2016 01:49 AM
Originally Posted by ponder48
BTW, I hope no one is offended by my use of Stovebolt for my car instead of a truck. The info here is better than I've seen at any other site.

Just load 2 bails of hay in the trunk and drive around the block twice and you will be good with us. Posting pics of said requirements are mandatory however. smile
Welcome to The Bolt! (Pending delivery of posted pics, of course.)
Carl
Posted By: ponder48 Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Tue Feb 16 2016 02:18 AM
Ha! Thanks, maybe one bale will fit. Will try to get a photo on here sometime or other.
Posted By: ponder48 Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Tue Feb 16 2016 02:20 AM
Thanks, I'll check them out. There's a young guy who has a shop close by and he's really good. I'm going to let him look through my shop manual and see what he thinks of doing the work for me. There's also a good link here on stovebolt about changing one out. I'm a bit afraid of trying it myself.
Posted By: ArtA Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Mon May 15 2017 04:16 AM
Chris, I'm planning to do this same gear swap on my '46.
Where did you get the tools for adjusting the notched nuts to get R & P backlash? The GM Rear Axle Overhaul manual shows the tool as J-972. Thanks.
Posted By: Cletis Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Mon May 15 2017 06:14 AM
I hand made a tool using steel bar stock and a couple of bolts.
Posted By: showkey Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Mon May 15 2017 01:48 PM
Very large 90* bent long nose pliers works great for the adjustment as quick one time solution.

Homemade tool with properly spaced pins is another option as mentioned.
Posted By: tclederman Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Mon May 15 2017 02:36 PM
Here is the. tool. I'll ship it to anyone who sends a $50 deposit refunded when the tool is returned (less shipping cost).

Maybe someone closer to you has a tool. Patrick's used to provide the tool in his installation kit, but he has become increasingly less reliable.

The tool is in Classic Parts' installation kit.
Posted By: showkey Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Mon May 15 2017 06:42 PM
As a side note on the rear gear install kit.
My orginal rear gears were in good shape. I reused all the bearings. Having a selection of pinion shims and the spacer tool was all that was needed. Made the spacer tool from the pattern supplied on Deves.
Posted By: bootstrap Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Wed Jan 09 2019 04:31 AM
Nothing like being in the middle of a post and the screen goes blank . "As I was trying to ask . In the tech article you(sweet) removed the brg, seal,and "deflecter'' .Well I did same only with 2 days of hell . The washer (deflecter) got bent a lot . What is it for ,do I need ? Could I just fix it up a little and put it back In with new brg. and seal ??? I do not know how to get a pic to you .
Posted By: tom moore Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Thu Jan 10 2019 03:01 PM
Last week I rebuilt the torque tube assembly by using this Technical Article and Deve’s website. Both of these resources are excellent and between the two I took the brave step of attempting this. Whitelightening: believe me when I say if I can do it - you can too. Not sure if I would have attempted this rebuild without SWEET’s good work.

Bout’ the only thing I would add is the front bearing lock ring can be tricky to slip into place. I took some extra time and ensured this ring was smooth around the outside edge, and I ensured the same for the torque tube. A very light coat of white grease on these two mating surfaces helped to let this ring slide into place with light taps on the pinion gear.
Posted By: tclederman Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Thu Jan 10 2019 05:47 PM
Congratulations, Tom
Posted By: Frank50 Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Thu Jan 10 2019 06:33 PM
Patrick Dykes used to imply that he was the exclusive supplier of these 3.55 kits for Chevy/ GMC 1/2-tons. I thought it was his design. Do other parts sellers offer these gear sets? I wonder who actually makes them.
Posted By: tclederman Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Thu Jan 10 2019 11:50 PM
At one time, Patrick Dykes was the only supplier.

One of our members, Mother.Trucker, has also been a supplier for several years.

MT obtains his sets on his own, from a (foreign) manufacturer.

One photo below shows boxes of those R&P stacked to ceiling.

Attached picture MT ring pinion.jpg
Attached picture MT in warehouse IMG_0981.JPG
Attached picture MT 3.55 in styrofoam box Img_3704.jpg
Attached picture MT RandP close-up Img_3696.jpg
Posted By: Frank50 Re: NEW!!! 3:55 Gear Installation Technical Article - Fri Jan 11 2019 01:06 AM
Thanks Tim for the info.
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