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Unread 04-22-2013, 08:11 AM   #1
StanF
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What Dana 44 will/won't work in Rear YJ?

From the FAQ:
"Replacing the rear axle with a Ford 8.8" (out of a 1995 or newer Explorer), or a Dana 44 (Metric-tonne Commanche (MJ), Towing-package Cherokee (XJ)) are a direct bolt-in once the spring perches are welded into place. Also, some of the newer Toyota axles also have the same wheel-bolt-pattern as a stock YJ, and their width is just about perfect as well."

From another thread:
"87-91 Grand Wagoneers had Dana 44's front and rear with either a 2.72 or 3.31 gear ratio"

I'm starting to look around for a Dana 44 rear to replace my Dana 35. I'm in no hurry. Will look for something in good condition at the right price. Ideally, I'd like to find a TJ Dana 44, but that might be difficult and/or expensive to find.

At this point, I'm just not sure what donor vehicles have suitable Dana 44s. Even worse, if an axle is out of the vehicle, what should I check? Axle width? Gear ratio, of course. Any help?

And for all you Ford 8.8 fans, don't worry, every Explorer on the road is seen as a potential donor vehicle.

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Unread 04-22-2013, 05:43 PM   #2
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Come on guys, share some of your knowledge...
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Unread 04-22-2013, 05:57 PM   #3
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A TJ dana 44 is hard to come by and when you do find it expensive. 8.8 is just as strong, or stronger, easy to find, lots of aftermatket support and not very expensive.


If you really want a 44 look under an Iszuz Rodeo, but those have 6 lug wheels.
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Unread 04-22-2013, 07:26 PM   #4
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Any other vehicles will give you more issues. Old grand wagoneers have 6 lug wheels as do isuzu rodeo/honda passports.

you need to check axle ratio or be prepared to change gears eventually

other options equally as easy as the top 2 are ford explorer 8.8" or 2wd toyota 8" all 5 have 5x4.5" wheel bolt patterns and are nearly identical in width. another advantage of the 8.8" and 8" is that they come stock alot of times with 4.10 axle ratios due to v6 and 4cyl engines they use
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Unread 04-22-2013, 07:32 PM   #5
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You can use a Scout 2 Dana 44 rear *5 on 5 1/2 bolt pattern then use a
pattern adapter. to convert to 5 on 4 1/2.

You could use a Ford Bronco 66-76 Ford 9" rear end and then see above*
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Unread 04-22-2013, 08:18 PM   #6
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I would skip a 44 unless its going in the front. Your hint of looking for an 8.8 is on the right track. They can be built up for a lot cheaper than a 44 and it doesn't take much to swap them to a Yj.
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Unread 04-23-2013, 08:26 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anticanman View Post
I would skip a 44 unless its going in the front. Your hint of looking for an 8.8 is on the right track. They can be built up for a lot cheaper than a 44 and it doesn't take much to swap them to a Yj.
x2, the ford 8.8 is way better, I wish I had gone that way.

doing a D44 you pretty much have to find new wheels or adapters no matter which way you go.

8.8's are more common and just as strong. I ended up with a jk D44 for cheap and I still haven't mounted it 2 years later

the issues I'm STILL dealing with:
gear ratio - different
bolt pattern - different
Track Width - different

all of these would be solved with an 8.8... but I'm too far into it now.
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Unread 04-23-2013, 11:02 AM   #8
StanF
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What is the WMS (wheel mounting surface) to WMS dimension for a YJ? Is 60.5" correct? I've also seen 60.0".

What is typical for an Explorer 8.8? I think it's a little less than the stock YJ. 59.5"?

What range is acceptable for a YJ if I do find a Dana 44? 58-62"?

Thanks!

Stan
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Unread 04-23-2013, 12:22 PM   #9
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As a side note, there are a ton of awesome threads on 8.8 swaps, and very little on Dana 44 swaps. That's why I was focusing my questions on the Dana 44 side of things.

Here's a picture of a Dana 44 that is close to me. Looks like a leaf spring setup. Any thoughts or comments? Thanks!
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Unread 04-23-2013, 12:39 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StanF View Post
What is the WMS (wheel mounting surface) to WMS dimension for a YJ? Is 60.5" correct? I've also seen 60.0".

What is typical for an Explorer 8.8? I think it's a little less than the stock YJ. 59.5"?

What range is acceptable for a YJ if I do find a Dana 44? 58-62"?

Thanks!

Stan
Quote:
Originally Posted by StanF View Post
As a side note, there are a ton of awesome threads on 8.8 swaps, and very little on Dana 44 swaps. That's why I was focusing my questions on the Dana 44 side of things.

Here's a picture of a Dana 44 that is close to me. Looks like a leaf spring setup. Any thoughts or comments? Thanks!

60.5" = stock YJ is what I have in my notes

not sure on the 8.8 as I dont have one

do you know what that D44 is out of? yup, looks like a leaf spring setup & drum brakes. can't tell you much more from here... ask the guy selling it
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Unread 04-24-2013, 07:45 AM   #11
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Sub'd to this thread. I'm interested in the 8.8 and have been doing a little research for a swap (hopefully next year).
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Unread 04-24-2013, 10:18 AM   #12
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The reason there is a lot of info on the 8.8 swap is that there are a ton of them in the junk yard (thanks cash for clunkers). They also have the correct bolt pattern and a useable width so you don't have to buy new wheels or adapters. The rear brakes aren't great, but I would consider it an upgrade over the stock d35 drums. They are also commonly found with gear ratios that you would actually want to use in a YJ that is potentially getting some larger tires.

The easy d44 swap options are very limited as only a few vehicles came with a d44 that matches the width and bolt pattern of the YJ, and those were produced in very limited numbers by comparison to every explorer that rolled off the line. If you find a Cherokee (XJ) d44, go for it. At least buy it if it's cheap and you can easily make some money reselling it. A Waggy or Scout rear axle could be used but would require new wheels or spacer/adapters. The EB 9" is not bad, but still needs wheels or adapters, and you are also getting old drum brakes and a very low pinion .

If you are swapping both axles, get a matched set from whatever you like, but if you are only swapping the rear I think the 8.8 is the best bet w/o breaking the bank.
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