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Old 08-12-2012, 08:41:31 PM   #1
2nd gen Guy
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3rd gen rear end swap ????

So I have a nice posi unit and 3.73 gears that I got for my 3rd gen Camaro. I sent the diff out for blast and paint but wound up picking up a '80 Camaro ( my true LOVE, 2nd gen !!). It has nothing for gears or posi and I wonder if its possible to modify the 3rd gen diff to fit. I know the coil spring perch is wrong but I could cut it off so the leafs will work ? I do have welding and fab ability so I don't mind doing it if its workable.
Anybody have experience with this ?
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Old 08-12-2012, 09:38:51 PM   #2
tjb408
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the third gen rear is a 7.5 inch ring gear. and not near as strong as the 8.5 that would be under the 80. plus i think it is a lot narrower than the 80 would be.
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Old 08-12-2012, 09:41:34 PM   #3
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sell the 3rd gen rear for enough money to buy a new gear set for the 8.5" in your 80.
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Old 08-12-2012, 09:47:07 PM   #4
fabrik8
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if you have a welder and fab skills why not just make a fourlink using the existing brackets. cit off the spring brackets and make some new coil over mounts and a nascar style sway bar and BAM!!! YOU GOT A ONE OF A KIND CAR. AS FOR THE GEARS. IF YOU HAVE THE MONEY JUST PUT SOME FORGED... oops, left the caps on... parts and make it bullet proof. unless the diff doesnt completely comprehend. good luck.
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Old 08-12-2012, 10:14:56 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fabrik8
parts and make it bullet proof. unless the diff doesnt completely comprehend. good luck.
Thats pretty funny, you can brake a 3rd gen rear with a completely stock car.

Keep the rear from the 80 and rebuild that
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Old 08-12-2012, 11:01:26 PM   #6
Gary S
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Reasons to not do it.

1. it has coil spring mounts
2. it is too wide for your car
3. it is a weak rear end

Reasons to keep your 2nd gen rear

1. It fits
2. It is much stronger than the 3rd gen stuff.
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Old 08-12-2012, 11:53:17 PM   #7
2nd gen Guy
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Well, my thots did run along the lines of just rebuilding the existing, figured since I have the 3rd gen it was worth looking into. The time line of events really s**k since I had got the posi just 2 wks b4 finding the 2nd gen. Now I got ALOT of rear end parts for a car I don't plan to finish !!!!! Thanks for the input... anybody want to buy a 3rd gen rear end ? LMAO !
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Old 08-12-2012, 11:58:16 PM   #8
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Oh and last thot on the 80 rear end is its a 2.41 so from what I learned so far is the biggest gear I can go is 3.08 ?
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Old 08-13-2012, 06:54:52 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2nd gen Guy
Oh and last thot on the 80 rear end is its a 2.41 so from what I learned so far is the biggest gear I can go is 3.08 ?

I think you need a 3 series carrier for anything 3.08 and higher ( 3.08, 3.42, 3.73, etc). They do sell adapter rings but some people do not recommend them (weak)

Last edited by reedld : 08-13-2012 at 03:17:59 PM.
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Old 08-13-2012, 10:15:36 AM   #10
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7.5 3rd gen rears are weak
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Old 08-13-2012, 10:24:48 AM   #11
Rich Schmidt
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The 3rd gen rear is a good bit shorter. You could probably do it with really offset wheels. As others have said,it is either the wimpy 7.5 or Aussy 9 bolt(not as bad). It would be way better to sell it and add gears and posi to what you have,but if you have under 400 hp and dont plan on drag racing on slicks it is a viable low buck choice. Figure on spending $100 or a tick more to get perches put on plus at least a bastard U joint on the driveshaft. Since you can probably sell it for $300 for more plus the $150 or so in fab work you could probably get pretty far into the job of buying a decent stock posi,ring an pinion,half kit to install and the professional labor. The $450 you save by selling the 3rd gen rear plus a hundred or two out of pocket on top of that will get you the better rear that fits right.

Good luck.
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Old 08-13-2012, 11:00:27 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2nd gen Guy
Oh and last thot on the 80 rear end is its a 2.41 so from what I learned so far is the biggest gear I can go is 3.08 ?

If you have a 2.41, the only other gears that directly fit it are the 2.56. You have a series 2 carrier.

The 2.73 to 4.10 gears need a series 3 carrier, but that doesn't matter because you say that you need to add posi too so you will be replacing the carrier anyway.

Simply replace your series 2 non-posi carrier with a series 3 posi carrier and the gears of your choice.
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Old 08-13-2012, 12:01:50 PM   #13
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If you are going to rebuild the 8.5 rear end that is in your car then I recommend going with 30 spline parts insteadof 28. The axles in the rear end are probably worn anyway and needto be replaced, so it wouldn't cost any more to upgrade to the 30 spline axles and posi. This makes the axles about 30% stronger or more. Moser makes direct fit 30 spline axles for this. Other manufacturer's axles need some modifications to make them work.

I guess you have already figured out that the 3rd gen rear end is not worth messing with. Go to www.thirdgen.org and list it in the classifides.
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Old 08-13-2012, 10:14:20 PM   #14
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Yea, I don't think I'll bother trying to mod the 3rd gen. Its been on Craigslist for a cpl weeks now, I'll list it on the 3rd gen site when the site lets me, but as I said before it was a thot to use it if possible. The '80 Z I got is a sweet ride, but needs to be put back together. Has fresh paint, no rust ( I live in Mn where the salt KILLS LOL ), ALOT of new parts and a 327 with Vette heads on a stand.
I don't plan to build it to the point that I can't drive it to work ( 90 miles round trip !!), I just about over built my 305 in the 84 and it only gets about 12 mpg so cruisin to work is spendy !! The newest Camaro is actually my 8th , 3 were parts cars but I still owned em LOL !!
Anyway, thanks for all the advice, I'm sure I'll be back looking for more as my project progresses LOL !!!
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