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Transit Dually Axle Question..

17334 Views 19 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  VacaMobile
Currently have a 2013 3500 sprinter van, and am potentially looking at a diesel Transit dually for the next project.

I can't seem to find the spec on the Transit duallys axle config.

Is it semi floating or full floating?

Sorry if this has been posted already I looked around and couldn't find anything.


Uncle Dave
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In this link, there is a close up shot of the dual rear wheel. It looks to me like a full floater, with the axle retaining bolts in the center. But I can't seem to find any info to confirm that.

2015 Ford Transit 150 EcoBoost, 350HD First Test - Motor Trend
Thanks I took a glance and didn't see anything in there but I'll dig in deeper later.

This is a big deal to me after having looked at what 7-10 years of daily work use at about 10K year does to a rigs rear end.

The Axles and rear end on my 02 E250 were basically trashed after running at rated weight for a decade. A little better care in its early years would have helped but I bought it used and went through it.

The Sprinter 3500 for all its issues has a full floating axle assembly.

I would imagine the transit follows suit, with all of Fords great rear ends its got to, but then again.....

The pic is all the way at the end of the article. I didn't know the Sprinter duals were full floaters. Were they limited slip as well? I always thought MB dropped the ball on not putting lsd diffs in all Sprinters. They are useless in the snow unless you have lots of weight and good snow tires.
Good question on the limited slip, Ill see what the sticker said.

Don't see much need for me to have it in So cal, but in the midwest or East coast for sure.

You are right on that slip issue -a good glassy pack would slaughter the thing.

I guess with a 4x4 available now it could meet real weather needs - but I don't think I could get a dually in the 4X4 trim.

My application carries lots of weight right on the tail.

Diesel genset
60 gallon water
full interior

Would love to hear the ford fully floats.

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Think you are correct - If I even know what I am looking at.

Looks like the carriers that hb1 and 2 bolt into carry the weight and torque- if Im seeing what I think Im seeing.

In a full floater the axle is splined at both ends, and does not support the wheel. The axles only transmit torque to the wheel.

In the illustration the axle has a flange at one end to support wheel. It also shows 5 lugs. If depicted accurately it's probably from a single-rear-wheel Transit instead of a dual-rear-wheel heavier-duty model. That's not to say the DRW axle may not be a full floater, but I wouldn't go by this illustration.

Personally I think that as long as the axle is designed for the intended load it doesn't matter that much whether it's full float or not. Most all large truck axles happen to be full float but it doesn't preclude a non floater to be designed to carry more weight. I'd guess the reason we don't see that more often in mid-size trucks is because it would cost and or weigh more.
Im having a hard time reconciling that drawing as that compared to the illustrations I see online showing the bearings and bolt setups.

Is being "rated" - good enough?

Depends on the owner I guess, I can only go by my experience with both.

With the axle type the rear end beef seems to follow.

With full-time work at rated load -the semi and non floating types (most 1/2 ton vehicles) didnt break on me, but either directly wore enough to warrant significant work with leaking seals, and rear end clean outs.

After 10 years, some were starting to "buzz" - where the full floating vehicles not only wear less, leak less, but seem to wear out the components around them less.

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Full floating axle.
Any chance it could still be semi-floating?

I think its possible to float at the axle and alleviate weight - but still transfer torque to it.

Or does one "prove" the other?

Feeling better about the Transit though...thanks for the input guys.

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