Strange Engineering S60 Rearend Build


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We're engine fanatics who appreciate big horsepower with stump pulling torque. Even so, we also understand all of that grunt requires a well balanced drivetrain to make it last. And while modified 10- and 12-bolts, along with the stout 9-inch rears have its place, this month we're focusing on Strange Engineering's S60 rearend.

If you didn't already know, the S60 is a proprietary casting that's designed to use Dana 60 components. This means 35-spline axles become the norm, which adds to the strength factor, making the S60 comparable to a 9-inch and considerably stronger over the 12-bolt. Best of all, you get your choice of differentials, such as the Traction-Lok, Truetrac, or a Locker.

Depending on your needs, Strange offers the S60 in a number of configurations ranging from the bare housing to a complete bolt-in assembly; ours was ordered for an early A-body Chevelle for the street. If you're looking for more of a dragstrip application, then you'll be happy to know that Strange also offers axles from their Pro Race line, a choice of larger axle studs, along with their Pro Lightweight spool.

All said and done, the S60 is a great alternative to the 9-inch by costing significantly less and without sacrificing any strength whatsoever. Add in the variety of options to choose from and you have a setup that'll grow with you for years to come. So, follow along as we show you what you can expect to get for your hard earned bucks.

S60 Highlights

  • All Strange S60's are cast from premium Nodular Iron.
  • Nodular Iron caps help reduce deflection, which also helps to extend gear life.
  • Strange designed its castings to fit GM A-Body, G-Body, late-model F-Body, and leaf spring applications.
  • 35 spline axles are standard in S60 rearend assemblies.
  • Tubes come fully welded (360 degrees) around casting.
  • The giant 9 ¾-inch diameter ring gear offers increased strength over OEM gears for the most demanding applications.

Clean Back Of Ring 2/22

1. To begin, an 80-grit sanding stone is used to clean the back of the ring gear. This removes any high spots and burrs and ensures a flat mounting surface to the differential.

Ring Gear Bolted Onto 3/22

2. The ring gear is then bolted onto the differential with 120 ft-lb of torque, along with a dab of red Loctite.

Front Pinion Bearing Journal 4/22

3. Next, the front pinion-bearing journal is polished. From here, the pinion bearing is pressed onto the pinion; no shims are needed here.

Pressed On Carrier 5/22

4. After first lubing the surfaces with a light coating of oil, we pressed on the carrier bearings.

Pressed On Ring 6/22

5. Next, we pressed on the ring gear.

Adjuster Nut 7/22

6. One of the unique features of the S60 rearend is the Adjuster Nut design. These allow for a quicker set up, eliminating the need for pounding shims in and out when trying to set backlash and bearing preload.

Apply Layer Of Copper Anti 8/22

7. We then applied a layer of copper anti seize to the adjuster nut prior. Note: using the copper will not create false shavings and will not stick to the magnetic plug.




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