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I'm not a ZF expert but I think the way it goes is, the dash-1 bell housing only bolts up to the dash-1 diff case which is 2 lbs lighter & narrower than a dash-2. The clutch release cross-shaft is shorter & smaller in OD than the dash 2 part & the throwout fork is smaller.The axle bearing side covers & gearbox end caps do interchange.

After having the gearbox out a couple of times the idea of having only lower studs is interesting. Re the strength issue allot of the stress would be rotational torque becoming shear on the remaining bolts and potentially shear on the 2 lower studs. While the studs may be not as effective as a machine bolt secured on  the inside it still may give some structural effectiveness.

This change  would allow you to slide the box onto these two lower studs and may make for an easier clutch spine shaft alignment than the full gearbox / bell housing assembly.

If you did it please note that the clearance to the face of the pressure plate rotating assembly from the face of the inside surface of the bell housing will likely be less than 6mm. The studs therefore should only be slightly longer in depth than the bell housing depth.

Otherwise you could catch the clutch rotating assembly.

Which is bad.

Happened to a friend of mine .....!

Right, I concur with your “analysis”….

My opinion is that the two studs will be smaller than the bolt holes, and without clamping force on the housing from the two (original) bolts, they are unlikely to provide any support vs. the rotational force, unless the outer bolts / holes on the bellhousing yield enough that the two inner studs press against their respective hole walls.

But that’s just my WAG (Wild Ass Guess).

It all depends on overall transaxle alignment, and bolt hole tolerances.

I’m running without the bolts installed, with studs.  Never had to pull the transaxle yet, though.


Last edited by rocky

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