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Old 08-09-2020, 03:17 AM   #1
Kilroy
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Default R10 overdrive compatibility

I just picked up a bunch of overdrive parts, in my quest to have an overdrive, torque tube trans in my roadster behind my flathead, and am curious about the r10 tailhousing and compatibility across the years.
Specifically, I have a nice Zephyr torque tube r10 assembly and a really nice tbird (I think) trans with overdrive, and I was wondering if the Zephyr TT tailhousing would swap in for the later R10? The bolt patter looks the same, but I can't get the tbird trans apart yet without a bunch more cleaning. So I figured I'd ask here.
Also, I can't remember if the consensus was that the later trans were stronger or the same as the flathead era toploaders?
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Old 08-09-2020, 11:52 AM   #2
frnkeore
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Default Re: R10 overdrive compatibility

I just sold a '41 Zephyr, OD trans. When I first bought it, I did a lot of research on them and as I remember, the later OD unit was stronger. I think it has more planetary gears but, is the same overall size.

Your issues will be the length of the shaft and if it is drilled and tapped for the U joint bolt.

BTW, The City of Orange, is my home town, Class of '62.
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Old 08-09-2020, 12:10 PM   #3
rotorwrench
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Default Re: R10 overdrive compatibility

All the R10 transmissions are about the same as far as strength. The 40 to 48 Lincoln set up is long so it is closer to the length of the open drive car types of the 8BA era. The torque tube & drive shaft would require a good bit of shortening to fit but it should be do-able. These are all side shift types.

The T-birds used the T85 with the R11 overdrive so they are a bit heavier than the earlier R10 types. They have a different size housing due to the larger 4 gear planetary.
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Old 08-09-2020, 12:14 PM   #4
Ol' Ron
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Default Re: R10 overdrive compatibility

I never liked the R 10, the 3 planetary design is akittle weak and ca't take much abuse. The T-85 used in the 56 up had a 4 Planetary design, which is much stronger. However with this said, the weak link is the rear eng. A spicer/dana 35 and a truck 3 spd /wOD would be bullet proof.
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Old 08-09-2020, 07:46 PM   #5
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Default Re: R10 overdrive compatibility

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ol' Ron View Post
I never liked the R 10, the 3 planetary design is akittle weak and ca't take much abuse. The T-85 used in the 56 up had a 4 Planetary design, which is much stronger. However with this said, the weak link is the rear eng. A spicer/dana 35 and a truck 3 spd /wOD would be bullet proof.
I hear you, and that's what I figured... The Rear would be the weak link.

The plan there is a closed drive QC...

I built the chassis with a QC in mind and it would look funny without one. I couldn't bring myself to dump $3500 for the whole Winters/Speedway rear with the posi and new axles.
So once I embraced keyed axles and rolling starts, it was easy to fall back to early ford trans and torque tubes. I built the frame with a 40 ford x member and the plan was to use all 40s ford parts, including the closed driveline. But then I moved back to SoCal and realized I'd be either hated or dead if I tried to drive that on the freeways around here.
So I started thinking T5 and open drivelines. Started gathering parts for that in fact...
The Tube adapters for the t5 don't really appeal to me because it seems kind of weird to go to that much expense to save the torque tube, when open drivelines were plenty traditional anyway.

I'd always thought finding a zephyr trans would be cool, but they never showed up on my radar or were stupid expensive when they did... But I just stumbled on 2 of them... So, back to the tube I go...

I'm still trying to get all the gunk off the old 50's ford OD trans, but the R10 unit on it, and the zephyr one I just picked up are so dimensionally similar, I started wondering if I could put the zephyr r10 unit on the later ford trans and have a marginally stronger unit.
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Old 08-09-2020, 07:51 PM   #6
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Default Re: R10 overdrive compatibility

Quote:
Originally Posted by frnkeore View Post
I just sold a '41 Zephyr, OD trans. When I first bought it, I did a lot of research on them and as I remember, the later OD unit was stronger. I think it has more planetary gears but, is the same overall size.

Your issues will be the length of the shaft and if it is drilled and tapped for the U joint bolt.

BTW, The City of Orange, is my home town, Class of '62.
Nice... We're in City of Orange too, and we like it here.

Thanks for the info. I guess there's no real way to tell for sure until I can get everything apart and compare.
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Old 08-09-2020, 08:02 PM   #7
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Default Re: R10 overdrive compatibility

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kilroy View Post
So once I embraced keyed axles and rolling starts, it was easy to fall back to early ford trans and torque tubes.
I used a V8 center quick change (Halibrand) but did an axle conversion. I used Ford 9 inch axles with the 5 1/2 on 5 bolt pattern.

And a T5z.

I did mine the hard way, just because I wanted to, but you can get conversion kits from Hot Rod Works.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Axles with Bearing Installed 2.jpg (54.9 KB, 29 views)
File Type: jpg Axles with Bearing Installed.jpg (46.1 KB, 30 views)
File Type: jpg Yoke Installed 2.jpg (42.0 KB, 33 views)
File Type: jpg QC 2.jpg (56.3 KB, 37 views)

Last edited by JSeery; 08-09-2020 at 08:13 PM.
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Old 08-10-2020, 09:37 AM   #8
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Default Re: R10 overdrive compatibility

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kilroy View Post
I hear you, and that's what I figured... The Rear would be the weak link.

The plan there is a closed drive QC...

I built the chassis with a QC in mind and it would look funny without one. I couldn't bring myself to dump $3500 for the whole Winters/Speedway rear with the posi and new axles.
So once I embraced keyed axles and rolling starts, it was easy to fall back to early ford trans and torque tubes. I built the frame with a 40 ford x member and the plan was to use all 40s ford parts, including the closed driveline. But then I moved back to SoCal and realized I'd be either hated or dead if I tried to drive that on the freeways around here.
So I started thinking T5 and open drivelines. Started gathering parts for that in fact...
The Tube adapters for the t5 don't really appeal to me because it seems kind of weird to go to that much expense to save the torque tube, when open drivelines were plenty traditional anyway.

I'd always thought finding a zephyr trans would be cool, but they never showed up on my radar or were stupid expensive when they did... But I just stumbled on 2 of them... So, back to the tube I go...

I'm still trying to get all the gunk off the old 50's ford OD trans, but the R10 unit on it, and the zephyr one I just picked up are so dimensionally similar, I started wondering if I could put the zephyr r10 unit on the later ford trans and have a marginally stronger unit.
I'm not sure about the answer to your question on interchangeability, but I think you'll be happy with the R10. I built my roadster with a quickchange and a hot flathead. I'm running open drive because I already had a '50 merc three speed with overdrive I wanted to use. Once I got the bugs sorted out I've been really happy with it. I run 4:11's and it's just right. If I was doing more freeway flying it would be no sweat to swap in 3:78 or even 3:48's and really cruise in overdrive. I actually started with the 3:48 until I had the overdrive working properly, then swapped to the 4:11.
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Old 08-10-2020, 01:04 PM   #9
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Default Re: R10 overdrive compatibility

JS, that\s a nice way to do it, if you have the cash. I don't, so build from the junk yard.
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Old 08-10-2020, 08:54 PM   #10
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Default Re: R10 overdrive compatibility

Ol Ron, that was mostly junk yard, LOL. The Ford axle was a 38 I had laying around, the 9 inch parts came out of a pickup I salvaged. The center section is an interesting story. It is a unit I had years ago. Traded it to a friend. When he died a lot of his parts were purchased by a local builder (Jelly). Jelly helped me with the conversion, he had the machine shop equipment required and I did a lot of the work. It took a lot of research to figure it all out, but that is the fun of it. I shortened and re-splined the axles, machined the carrier, added the axle housing ends, etc. So, I did have to spend some money, but most of it was salvaged. Like I posted, I enjoy doing things the hard way and figuring out some of the old methods.

Learning to do the splines was a real education!!!
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Splines.jpg (53.1 KB, 37 views)
File Type: jpg Splining Axle 2.jpg (66.4 KB, 36 views)
File Type: jpg Splining Axle.jpg (48.9 KB, 37 views)
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Old 08-24-2020, 06:06 PM   #11
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Default Re: R10 overdrive compatibility

If you don't use all the O/D parts I might be interested in your left overs, Class of 60, had a speed and boat shop in the old original Ford dealership across from C W Moss.
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Old 08-25-2020, 12:37 PM   #12
frnkeore
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Default Re: R10 overdrive compatibility

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Originally Posted by callcoy View Post
If you don't use all the O/D parts I might be interested in your left overs, Class of 60, had a speed and boat shop in the old original Ford dealership across from C W Moss.
That would be Corwin Ford and CW Moss, would be the old Selman Chev (also, Ford Parts Obsolete, before CW), dealer building, a block up from Bob Snow's, Foreign Car Repair. I knew Bob, from my SCCA, Formula Atlantic days.

I bought parts out of both buildings, in my mechanic days, when they where still dealerships.

I'm sure we must have mutual friends. Did you know Bob or George Scharer?

Do you recognize this coupe?

Sorry to get OT but, it's always nice to reconnect.
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File Type: jpg George Coupe.jpg (60.2 KB, 10 views)
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Last edited by frnkeore; 08-25-2020 at 04:20 PM.
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Old 08-25-2020, 04:17 PM   #13
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Default Re: R10 overdrive compatibility

Back OT. I wouldn't worry about the axles or, keys. The above car has a 324 Olds and the axles and keys held, with a 4x2 intake and a Chet Herbert, roller cam. It also had a 4500 lb Hays clutch and 37 LaSalle trans.

It wasn't until the 471 and dual AFB's went on it, that we had to change it out to a Olds rear end.
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