The Dana 50 TTB and getting it under my E350 van.



You must not be able to see the picture, as it is a 5 lug Dana 44 TTB, most likely on a Bronco of F150 and not my Blazer. You are of course correct about it being a proven system.
Saw the pic and realized it wasn't Raquel because I didn't see the Brembos :). Finally got the thread link to work again that bcaine linked.

Todd Z.


The radius arm in that pic looks very well-designed from what I can see. Not only does it span the whole width of the beam, it goes further by wrapping around over the top & bottom of it (assuming that it's built in a similar fashion on the underside). It also has a nice plate within the center of the arm's structure to keep the tubes from flexing longitudinally to each other when torque moment from the differential is applied to it. Additionally the tubes are fashioned into a triangle rather than two long parallel tubes (one of which having a bend at the end)... And finally it does not appear to have the curvature for tire clearance that Ramsey commented on, which is something I do agree with him on (but that is not where my concern was on the arms posted a few pages ago).

As for bolting arms to a D50 TTB, I would try to copy exactly how Ford did it on the coil-sprung versions.
On the section of box tubing up on top, I'd drill a hole then weld a 3/4" or maybe even 7/8" nut on the inside (if it can fit), and then do the same again for the bottom side of the beam (if the bottom nut can be fitted inside the beam itself, I'd go that route just to have a bit more clearance for passing a rock or other object between the diff and the tire). The radius arm would have 5/16" thick mounting "ears" that fit snugly around the beam, and would be secured with two large bolts that go into the nuts welded in earlier.

Ramsey's point about how a bolted setup can allow an arm that is curved for tire clearance to pivot on the beam and bend in the event of stuffing a tire into a ditch or hole is very valid. However something needs to be remembered... The average owner of a 4WD camper van obviously isn't likely to be racing it around through the deserts of Baja at breakneck speeds. It's just not the right vehicle for it (that is unless he wants his cabinetry, water tanks, solar panels, racks, etc. to all start shedding themselves from the vehicle).
Attention should go toward a sturdy design that will tolerate the vehicle trying to claw it's way around while in low range (and rocks impacting the arm directly too), and less on trying to save a pound or two (I assume that was reason for the earlier derogatory comment about the 3/8" gusset... whether you agree with the use of 3/8" material or not, you can't say it is going to bend & fail in this instance).

If I am wrong and there are people that do race around in their vans, then I'll concede 3/8" material doesn't have a place here. However that does not mean there isn't room to build a lightweight yet sturdy design (which the pic bcaine posted shows quite well how this is possible)

This whole time I've tried to be constructive as possible, but I don't want to keep cluttering up philos' thread here if something productive can't come from it.


No progress on my end at the moment, but definitely in my list of projects.
I'm going to sell my 7.3 and look for a gasoline powered van. My kids and dogs hate the diesel, and I'm not in love with the maintenance.
I've still got a pile of parts, and I have been in semi-regular contact with a friend of a friend with equipment to machine my knuckles to accept the ABS components.

So, once I've got my current van cleaned up and sold off, and a replacement is found, I can get back to this project.

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Also, Bcaine has been making actual progress on his build (we've been messaging). Maybe he'll chime in if he's up for it.

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I am trying to show how well the van drives. The ReadHead gear took the play out of the steering wheel. The steering linkage angle eliminates bump steer, and the coils make for a softer ride.
Ahh, ok. Didn't read the whole thread so maybe I missed something. Good to see positive feedback on the Redhead box, I'm planning on adding one for my new-to-me '93 Dodge 250.


Active member
Thanks for that post. I installed a remanded unit from advance auto that almost feels worse than what was in there. I really only did it since everything else is now new in the front end after the lift. I’ll be ordering a redhead this week. Glad to hear more good things.

I am trying to show how well the van drives. The ReadHead gear took the play out of the steering wheel. The steering linkage angle eliminates bump steer, and the coils make for a softer ride.


New member
I put together something a little more entertaining.
If you like what you see, Like and subscribe, there is more where that came from. Also comment and tell me what you want to see next.