You can switch the shafts out. I did it. When I got my lower gears I had to buy a new speedometer gear.
I thought I was going to get lucky by ordering a gear with the correct shaft from Ruel Teague Motors in Oregon (the only dealership that had on in stock in the country according to the dealer ship by my college) Then I had my mom call to order it the guy walked to the back and said that it was the correct number with the correct teeth count. When I recieved the gear it was a stock gear that looked like it had been used. There was greese in the end of the shaft where it goes into the gear cable and it wasn't even in the package that the speedo gears come in. I called the dealership and the guy gave me some BS about how the part numbers changed (yes numbers changed but the part didn't) and he refused give me the correct gear. So I went to the Landers by my house (where I get all my dealer parts at, people are nice and there is a guy who is knowledgeable about Jeeps and Jeepers) He ordered me the correct tooth count gear with a long shaft.
Anyway back to switching the shafts. First you take a torch and heat the shaft of your old gear, until you see the plastic start to bubble around where the shaft enters. Flip the gear over and use a punch or nail to tap the shaft out. (Take note to how far in the shaft goes in so you can get the correct length) Repeat this process for the new gear to get the shaft out of it.
New gear, with the short shaft
Now heat the end of the long shaft that you are putting in the new gear, until the end turns purple/blue. Now slide the shaft into the gear and make sure it goes in strait.
Here is the gear finished
I hope this helps
but X2 on what set up are you using to need that gear, you would have to be runningn 35's or 36's on stock gearing
'87 XJ: Front 3-link with coilovers, sits at 4.5" of lift | Custom front bumper | Custom rear bumper | Custom Rock Rails | Tow hooks and Rear hitch | Warn M8000 | Racing seats | Factory D44 in the rear | 33x12.50 Interco TrXus MT's on Mickey Thompson 15x8 Classic Lock's | 4.56 gears | ECTED's front and rear | RCV front axle shafts
The price for the gears went up a few months ago. Most everyone is asking around 70 for one.
'95 XJ country edition, 4" coils/3/4" spacers, HD leafs with extra main added in, Ironman adjustable control arms, rough country shackles, aussie locker, JK rubicon shocks, 35" mudder's, soft 8's, cobra cb
Sold '00 TJ, 4" lift, rusty's adjustable control arms, skyjacker shocks, rock krawler adj. trac-bar,rugged ridge SYE and RE driveshaft, soft 8's, 35" mud king xt's,XJ HP D30 w/aussie locker, 4:88 yukon gears, hella 500's, rock crusher diff covers
4. 04 Dodge ram 1500 quadcab, yes, it has a hemi.
5. '08 BMW X3, Mods in progress.