Ring Gear Backlash
Backlash between the ring and pinion gear is set after the pinion gear is installed and adjusted. Side bearing preload is adjusted while performing the backlash check. After these bearing preloads have been adjusted, it's good practice to check the gear tooth pattern. Use the appropriate dye or marking compound to complete this task.
Both the side and pinion bearings are adjusted by changing the shim thickness on each side of the case. Some differentials have adjusting nuts at each end that can be turned to adjust backlash. Be careful whenever working with a differential case; they are heavy and can slide out of the differential housing easily. Use manufacturer's specifications when making these adjustments.