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1981 Rear differential


Well-known member
Jul 18, 2003
1981 Dark Blue Coup
Is there anyway to remove the ring and pinion gear (front part of the carrier) without removing the entire diff carrier..I search the forum, but could not find anything...sorry if this is a repeat. I am in the process of removing my stock engine and my transmission. I am upgrading to a 700R4 and have many questions..my rear end is stock..can I upgrade without changing the rear gear ratio....anyone done this already.....also looking at steeriods rack and pinion..pro's and con's...awesome forum.....I ahve gave spardic updates on my project...will post pictures when complete....all my ideas have came from this forum...many many thanks


Well-known member
May 21, 2003
'81 Black
Hello Feltman,

A quick reaction from me :)
The ring and pinion gear always go together. If you only change one I think the gears will not fit each other.
It's not possible to get the pinion gear out with everything still in place. You need to remove the pinion nut and there is no room to get it loose under the vette. Also with a new set of ring and pinion gears you'll need to fine tune them again. Measuring backlash and some other things. To get the entire diff from under the vette isn't that difficult so that would be my choice.
I've also changed to a 700R4 in my 81 but I assumed the diff was about right. What's you're opinion on that? I don't see no reason to change the gear ratio. The 700 has a very short first and a very long 4th gear so it'll go with right about any gear ratio I think. But I didn't drive mine yet so.....

I think the steeroids rack and pinion has been a subject overhere many times before, so with a search you'll find everything you need. When you're at it, also search for a Jeep steeringbox that could also be a good option :)

Groeten Peter.


Well-known member
Dec 1, 2002
black 81 corvette 4-speed
The whole diff has to come out its not a real bad job just the shock mounts can be a real pain.


Well-known member
Jan 11, 2001
Enschede, The Netherlands
1982 Twin Turbocharged Red/Black
Be sure you know what you are doing when setting up a diff for a new ring & pinion gear, to do the job properly you need a depth gauge, a micrometer, a dial gauge, a case spreader, bearing puller, press, cutting compound and some homemade tools for holding the stub axles, the pinion and compressing the clutch pack. Setting these diffs up is not that hard but can be quite an ordeal for the novice.

The jeep box is reported to have an overassisted feel, some say steeroids has that also but IMO it does not, it doesn't feel overassisted (But IMO it does feel sloppy and imprecise)

I'm installing a manual flaming river R&P for a friend, there's some issues with that kit also (and I'm not too keen about the bumpsteer geometry from the looks of things, will have to "feel" when driving if it's acceptable or not)

IMO there's not 1 proper steering kit on the market today. If the jeep box wasn't overassisted it'd be the neatest kit out there. I have no personal experience with this kit (and I would modify the frame to install an undrilled/modified box)

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