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Discussion Starter #1
<font color="yellow">
Seen quite a few posts on 4-cyl vs. V6 third members lately. Anyway, here's a good set of pic illustrating the difference:

And yes, the two are completely interchangeable. V6 has more gusseting, 2 extra pinions, bigger bearings, and a marginally stronger gearset. It's also a hell of a lot easier to put a lockright or EZ Locker into yourself (Did I mention I HATE cross pins?)

<a target="new" href="http://people.memphis.edu/~ecmills/v6third/THIRD08.JPG">
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Empty housing.

<a href="http://people.memphis.edu/~ecmills/v6third/THIRD06.JPG" target="new">
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V6 about to go in.

<a target="new" href="http://people.memphis.edu/~ecmills/v6third/THIRD07.JPG">
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Axle slid out of carrier.

<a target="new" href="http://people.memphis.edu/~ecmills/v6third/THIRD01.JPG">
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Here it is all finished.

<a target="new" href="http://people.memphis.edu/~ecmills/v6third/THIRD02.JPG">
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Upside down comparison.

<a target="new" href="http://people.memphis.edu/~ecmills/v6third/THIRD03.JPG">
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Side by side, gear-side, right side up.

<a target="new" href="http://people.memphis.edu/~ecmills/v6third/THIRD04.JPG">
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Side by side. Probably the best shot.

<a target="new" href="http://people.memphis.edu/~ecmills/v6third/THIRD05.JPG">
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The easiest way to tell which one you have, right here, baby!

Anyway, took about 3 hours using just jackstands and hand tools the first time I ever touched a Toyota rear axle, just in case you're pondering this swap. None of the bolts were hard to remove with an 18" breaker bar, but the driveshaft took a hell of a pounding with a rubber mallet to get free of the flange. Did this about 3 weeks ago when I was putting an EZlocker in the rear end.</font>
 

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Good explaination! I had seen some good side by side pics on here one time, but I couldn't recall where.

I have also read that there are some V6 diffs out there w/only 2 pinions instead of 4. Its kinda rare, but I guess they are out there.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Originally posted by duluthmn:
<STRONG>I have also read that there are some V6 diffs out there w/only 2 pinions instead of 4. Its kinda rare, but I guess they are out there.</STRONG>
<font color="yellow">I don't know... but I doubt it. I think they would have to use 4-cylinder gears in it for that to happen, since you'd need to use a 4-cylinder style carrier to have 2 pinions.

I suppose the V6 carrier might allow 2 pinions, but I don't see any way that could work.

I think a more likely explanation is that somebody got one of those trucks with a 3.0 that had a 4-cylinder third member in the back axle. It did happen on some of them. They just assumed that they had a V-6 third since they had a V-6... and unless you know what to look for, or have the two side by side, it's fairly hard to tell the difference.

Hell, I'd never seen one before mine arrived UPS (Paid $50 for it! <IMG SRC="smilies/biggrin.gif" border="0">) and I had to crawl under the truck with it to double check, because I thought it was a 4-cylinder. I know better now.

If you have it out of the axle you can look at it and tell instantly what it is. If you can see all 4 gears inside the carrier through a big 2"x2" hole, it's a 4 cylinder. If you can see a big shiny steel looking thing and the gears are only visible through tiny holes, it's a 6: See?</font>
 

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great job!! great pic's

get'n mine on sat!!
spool and 5.29's to replace a ruined 4cyl third, lookin' forward to it!

later
 

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Originally posted by Yota-San:
<STRONG>
Originally posted by duluthmn:
[qb]I have also read that there are some V6 diffs out there w/only 2 pinions instead of 4. Its kinda rare, but I guess they are out there.</STRONG>
<font color="yellow">
I think a more likely explanation is that somebody got one of those trucks with a 3.0 that had a 4-cylinder third member in the back axle.</font>[/QB]
Interesting note: On my 89 V6 XCab, the axle code on my door sticker said that I had a 4cyl diff. When I finally pulled it out to replace with a V6 one, I discovered that it was a V6 one already. <IMG SRC="smilies/rolleyes.gif" border="0"> Not sure what Toyota was thinking on that one...

And I guarantee that's the way it came from the factory. My Dad bought the truck new.
 

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Yeah and were can I get one? So the V6 one is stronger than the 4cyl one? Is that the reason for the swap?
 

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Yup, the V6 is stronger (check out the link above)

I would think any boneyard should have some...
 

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Discussion Starter #11
<font color="yellow">The V6 is stronger because:
  • The bearings the carrier rides on are larger
  • The third member is gusseted more than the 4Cyl (See above pictures)
  • The carrier itself has 4 pinions, not two. Coincidentally this makes installation of an in-carrier (lockright, EZ locker) locker simpler, since the carrier simply splits in half with 8 bolts, and doesn't require a cross pin to be *FORCED* out of the housing.
  • The gears are stronger. The differerence, however, is marginal and hardly worth changing just for that.
V6 lockers are cheaper than 4 cylinder ones, but *Real* V6 gears are more expensive, so it equals out.

Since the difference is fairly insignificant, many people use the cheaper 4cylinder gears and a spacer to make up the difference, and save money on both.

The ONLY companies that make V6 gears are Precision, and Toyota. Everyone else sells a 4Cyl set and a spacer for this application.

If you wait around, you can probably find a V6 Unit for around $150 <IMG SRC="smilies/confused.gif" border="0"> I found the one I got in the For Sale section for a steal of a price ($50!) and I would NOT count on finding another one for that price... but they do turn up in the for sale section fairly regularly.</font>
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Originally posted by OOPS:
<STRONG>Did you know that this is real hard on axle seals?</STRONG>
<font color="yellow">Do you know how many times I've heard that? And every one of them who've said that was right. I was very gentle moving them around, though, which may explain why they didn't leak afterward.

BTW - How do y'all like my mega travel "Block AND Add-A-Leaf" rear suspension? <IMG SRC="smilies/rolleyes.gif" border="0">
<a href="http://people.memphis.edu/~ecmills/v6third/THIRD07.JPG" target="new">
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Hey, it keeps the fenders off the MT/Rs until I can throw some chevy's under there. <IMG SRC="smilies/skull.gif" border="0"> <IMG SRC="smilies/skull.gif" border="0"> <IMG SRC="smilies/skull.gif" border="0"></font>

[ 11-01-2001: Message edited by: Yota-San ]
 

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Originally posted by OOPS:
<STRONG>Great write up.

Did you know that this is real hard on axle seals? <IMG SRC="smilies/usa.gif" border="0"> <IMG SRC="smilies/usa.gif" border="0"></STRONG>
Not really since the axle is resting on the metal just inside the seal and not on the seal itself. <IMG SRC="smilies/wink.gif" border="0">



(I think) <IMG SRC="smilies/biggrin.gif" border="0">
 

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Originally posted by Erik Beeb:
<STRONG>Not really since the axle is resting on the metal just inside the seal and not on the seal itself. <IMG SRC="smilies/wink.gif" border="0">




(I think) <IMG SRC="smilies/biggrin.gif" border="0"></STRONG>

Exactly. I've never been able to figure what people are talking about. Every time I have slide out the axle, the seal is larger than the axle. The axle rests steel on steel. No contact with the seal.
 

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Don't matter to me. For 4$ each I just replace them if I pull the axle out.
 

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Originally posted by Wrench:
<STRONG>Yeah and were can I get one? So the V6 one is stronger than the 4cyl one? Is that the reason for the swap?</STRONG>
in my opinion, it's only marginally stronger. the ring gear didn't get any larger in diameter but the pinion gear got a slight bit larger. not quite worth all the effort to 'upgrade' to me. the bearings and side gears aren't what fails ... just my .02

- jack
 

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Originally posted by morpheus:
<STRONG>in my opinion, it's only marginally stronger. the ring gear didn't get any larger in diameter but the pinion gear got a slight bit larger. not quite worth all the effort to 'upgrade' to me. the bearings and side gears aren't what fails ... just my .02

- jack</STRONG>
I agree. If you got one, use it, but I wouldn't go looking for one. How come nobody ever mentions anything about the carrier-bearing races spinning in the V-6 housing. It's a pretty common problem......
 

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The ring and pinion size are only part of the equation. When the whole assembly flexes under load, the the gear teeth no longer mesh at their strongest and at some point will fail making it seem like just the R&P were the problem. This is the reason for the extra ribbing on the V6 housing, etc.
And on the the Tacoma/T100/Tundra diff, the bearing cap spans the whole backside of the diff to reduce housing flex for this same reason.

T100/Taco/Tundra diff:


However FWIW, I'm not sure the 4cyl to V6 diff upgrade is really that big of an upgrade...

The T100/Tundra diff should be though since Toyota sees fit to put it behind a V8 w/ two thirds more horsepower and torque than the 3.0 V6...
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Originally posted by Bad Karma:
<STRONG>I agree. If you got one, use it, but I wouldn't go looking for one.</STRONG>
<font color="yellow">I actually agree. I don't think the strength is that much greater. But as I said, I came across an Ad for a third member for $50 - how could you NOT pick that up? It's a spare part for something that DOES fail on occasion, and it's stronger than wha was there, to boot.

The greatest reason to buy a V6 (to me) is if you're going to install an in-carrier locker. Did I mention I HATE cross pins? I'd much rather have to undo 8 bolts than ruin a whole punch set getting the bitch out.</font>
 
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