rear axle, airbags, bending and 3300lbs of added weight

rear axle, airbags, bending and 3300lbs of added weight

Postby subfather [OP] » March 31st 2015, 8:07am

Ok guys, so im new here,

i need to know if and what kind of axle i can swap out on my 94 astro, for a thicker housing. my current one has bent, i have over 3300lbs in car audio in the back...

i also have a problem with Swaying when i stop, white nuckleing it sucks!!!

so i am also considering a rear brake conversion to rotors, hoping that will prevent it. i have 2500lb airbags also in the back to help keep it off the ground. but i think i bent the axle BEFORE i put the bags on.

So... what kinda of chevy trucks are interchangeable with thicker axles?
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Re: rear axle, airbags, bending and 3300lbs of added weight

Postby chevymaher » March 31st 2015, 12:52pm

Nothing else fits without modification. One side of the axle is longer on the van. Center section is offset.

There was another guy with the exact same issue. Stereo equipment and air bags. Never posted his remedy but he got advice and was never seen again. Air bags were in the wrong place was the problem tho. To far inboard and not where the springs were.

Any rear end will do the same thing. They all made the same. Is it tha axle tubes bending? Or the axles? If it is the axle tubes weld in reinforcements. Drag race cars do this. 4 wheelers also.
If it is the axles themselves Moser will make you a set of tougher ones.
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Re: rear axle, airbags, bending and 3300lbs of added weight

Postby Lumpy » March 31st 2015, 2:29pm

chevymaher wrote:
Nothing else fits without modification. One side of the axle is longer on the van. Center section is offset.



I R gettin' cornfused.

The mountain man says "Offset isn't important, as long as your U joints can handle it"

The hillbilly says "Only the offset Astro axle will fit"

Which is it? Hatfields? or McCoys?


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Re: rear axle, airbags, bending and 3300lbs of added weight

Postby chevymaher » March 31st 2015, 3:07pm

Non offset fits but you will have no clearance between the gas tank and drive shaft. So modify the tank or pray nothing moves. Tank held by straps and will shift. Hole ground in the tank. Gas spraying off the drive shaft all over the bottom. Sparks.
I guess it would work fine it just about your priorities.
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Re: rear axle, airbags, bending and 3300lbs of added weight

Postby Lumpy » March 31st 2015, 3:53pm

chevymaher wrote:
... Hole ground in the tank. Gas spraying off the drive shaft all over the bottom.


Save on undercoating and U-joint lube, I suppose.


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Re: rear axle, airbags, bending and 3300lbs of added weight

Postby 97cargocrawler » March 31st 2015, 4:16pm

Well we have folks with the Furd 9" and GM 14-bolt. Not sure about the thickness of those tubes but I'm certain the 14-bolt is probably close to 1/2" thick. I know I carry at least an extra 2,000lbs around with me everyday so I did this to the stock axle:

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I saw my axle tubes angled away from the diff housing. Those tubes just thread in loosely and are held with spot welds. Junk.
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Re: rear axle, airbags, bending and 3300lbs of added weight

Postby subfather [OP] » March 31st 2015, 6:03pm

the end of the axle house has bent,other side of the shock, the mono leaf fiberglass piece of crap i think didnt do its job, the Airbags are on the inside of the frame, so narrow, ive thought about putting them over the leaf springs but its a fiber glass mono piece of crap...
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Re: rear axle, airbags, bending and 3300lbs of added weight

Postby chevymaher » March 31st 2015, 7:42pm

Nothing wrong with the glass leaves. I got them, look like new ride great and have 282 thousand miles on them. I didn't trust them at first but they proved themselves to me.

You got the same set up as the last guy who had that issue.
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Re: rear axle, airbags, bending and 3300lbs of added weight

Postby Mmusicman » March 31st 2015, 8:05pm

chevymaher wrote:Nothing wrong with the glass leaves. I got them, look like new ride great and have 282 thousand miles on them.

Funny... I have exactly 282,000+ miles on my Astro fiberglass leafs too. :dance:

But seriously, I would highly recommend a full rear suspension and rear-end overhaul! These vans are probably rated for about 1/2 ton... and you have 3X (triple) that amount! You not only need proper springs... but a rear with axles designed to handle that kind of weight. Could potentially even be dangerous.

Anything less... is just rigging it!
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Re: rear axle, airbags, bending and 3300lbs of added weight

Postby coppermtn » April 7th 2015, 5:41pm

I haven't had my stock gas tank in the van in years, so I don't know how close the driveshaft would be.

You can have a pumpkin all the way out near the end forging if u want though or offset anywhere along the axle... think front axles, driver or passenger drop.


Go with a full float rear axle like the 14 bolt if you want to carry weight and not break a rear axle shaft.
Although the 14 bolt is a monster.
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