Differential ID by Tag Number
DANA / Spicer Diff ID
The Bill of Material (BOM) number is used to identify Dana differentials. The BOM will identify the model number, the gear ratio, the type of differential, and all component parts. Traditional BOM’s are 6 digits followed by 1 or 2 digits and start with the numbers 60 or 61. On some tags, the first 2 digits don’t appear on the tag, but they must be used to identify the axle. For instance, you might see 5561-1 for the BOM, but the 60 has been dropped, and one would need to use 605561-1. Later BOM’s may start with the first 3 digits of 200, but these are typically not dropped from the tag.
On GM axles made by Dana, the Bill of Material is usually stamped in the right hand tube underneath the spring. These BOM’s normally start with 60, and the first 2 digits are not typically dropped as in some cases with Dana ID tags.
Ford Diff ID
Ford differential tags are very straightforward, as indicated above. The Month of Manufacture uses the following format:
A = January, B = Febraury, C = March, etc.
Reverse Rotation vs Standard Rotation
Visual Differential ID
Without an ID tag, differentials are identified by the number of cover bolts, the distinctive shape of the cover, the number of ring gear bolts, and ring gear diameter. They can also be identified by whether the center section is an integral or dropout design. Dropout differentials are also referred to as 3rd members or pumpkins. The chart below shows various differential covers and 3rd Members.