I run an Aussie locker on my stock D30 with 33's...the only time I had a problem was when I got all bound up on an off camber section, wedged against the side of the hill...too much skinny, pop went the axle. I knew it was binding, but kept on the gas...my fault. But at the time I had a fear of rolling down the hill, so I wasn't really thinking straight...
I've wheeled quite a bit with the Aussie since then, and before then, without any issues. I love the Aussie up front, if I could afford selectables, such as ARB, I'd do it, but for the time being I'll stay with my Aussie up front and my factory trac-lok in the rear D35.
Moab Trails I've done: Onion Creek, Long Canyon, Dome Plateau, Top of The World (2), Fins-N-Things (2), Poison Spider,
Golden Spike, Gold Bar Rim, Hell's Revenge (2), Baby Lion Back, Cliff Hanger, Moab Rim, Kane Creek Canyon, Strike Ravine
Like jeffro said above... A selectable locker would be preferred, but they cost more. I would recommend swapping that dana 35 for an 8.8 before paying for a full carrier style locker for the d35. The Dana 30 front will treat you just fine.
Im looking to install lockers on the axles in my 93 YJ with 33" mud terrain tires.
will this put too much stress on the axles?
the locker itself doesnt put any stress on the axles, its the driver who does that. we cant answer your question completely because we have no idea what you do with your vehicle.
ive had great success locking factory axles and later failed when locking aftermarket ones. in the process what i was doing with my jeep had changed, and was the key factor in what was happening to the axles.
if you are wheeling in mild mud, sand, and loose undulating trails and carefully picking a line is the style you prefer, in destinations that are not too remote, then go for it. you will be able to cruise over things that had you gunning to get over prior.
if you find your wheeling experience involving others relying on you in the middle of nowhere, or a driving style that forgoes slow deliberate wheel placement, or aggressive trails are a goal then think of other options.
also if you wheel with friends who are more heavily equipped then think about building in a similar manner. where they go, you will go.
no one should tell the guy who whoops-it-up on his farm and laughs hysterically every time something goes bang; "OMG dont lock a dana 35." that just might be the point of his fun.
I say go for it ! Im running Aussies on the 30 and 35 on 35" tires !
Just ask Mikebk how much I abuse those axles, Never a problem,,
Well, let me back up a second. I have broken two D30 axle shafts but dont really consider that a problem. I carry complete spare set ups and can change them out on the trail in 20 minutes
The rear will tend to get angry first before the front because it sees a bit more stress than the front, especially when climbing up hills. The D35 has been proven over and over again to be weaker than other axles, specifically the D44 and Ford 8.8. Locking an axle can put more stress on the axle shafts after removing the weak point of the spider gears from breakage (although you'll get less fast wheel spin with a locked axle; many D35 breakages happen when a spinning wheel finds traction FAST). The D35 has thinner weaker shafts than other stronger axles. When the shafts break, the wheel will come out from underneath the vehicle because of the c-clip design (shared by the 8.8, but since the 8.8 is stronger it's moot).
With that said, I've been wheeling an Aussie locked D30 and D35 on 33" tires for a few years now with no breakage. I have a 2.5L low output engine, so that might contribute to my luck a bit. I recently installed Superior's Super Eliminator kit which eliminates the c-clips and gives you way stronger shafts. Stronger shafts mean less chance of breakage and no c-clips mean the shafts won't slide out when I do break something.
Was the Super Eliminator more expensive than a Ford 8.8 from the junkyard? Maybe. I have a welder and the minimal fab skills to get an 8.8 under a YJ. Why did I "waste money" on my D35? It only took me a few hours to install the Super Elim. kit. I've got a 6 month old Jeeper in training and garage time has been really limited lately. Doing up a locked Ford 8.8 "right" would have taken me a few dozen hours AND it would have cost me close to $1k to get it the way I want. I honestly finished the Super Elim. kit in under 5 hours, including making a bearing puller.
If I had to do it again I _probably_ wouldn't have gotten an Aussie for my D35. But I bought it before I knew better so now I'm going to live with it for a bit. I still carry spare D35 shafts, bearings, and spiders JIC--I'm not going to let a broken D35 keep me from getting home to see my boy.
Bottom line: It really comes down to the skinny pedal and luck. Some guys break an unlocked D35 in a parking lot going 3 mph. I ran a locked D35 on stock shafts for a while with no breakage, all the while very conscious that a little too much skinny pedal would really piss me off.
Another way of thinking: My buddy wheels the crap out of his stock/open D35 on 33s (35s for a while) and he has broken shafts a few times. His strategy: keep replacing his broken D35 with other D35s because they are super cheap, most of the time he finds them for next to nothing.
I'm not the last one that'll beat this dead horse. Go wheeling--don't listen to anyone on the internet. But always carry spare parts.
1995 YJ Rio Grande, 2.5L Low Output Engine My Jeep Worklog