Why would you want to do this swap? Seems like the QD works quite well and running in 2wd has no gas mileage benefits; so why change?
Let me answer this question with a story of my own POS 247. Last March I had my 04 Overland with fresh 4" lift and 32's and only 82k miles in Moab UT. I also pulled a 3000# popup camper out there from Denver too. The first day I was there I was doing Fins and Things (moderate trail), and a few hours into the trail I heard a PINGGG....ZING ZING ZING, at which my forward progress was halted. My Tcase basically blew up and it took me 30 minutes with someone's help under the Jeep to get the thing to engage. It would only barely get into 4HI and I had to press hard on the lever the entire time to keep it in. I had several more very steep climbs and decents to do to get off the trail, a working Tcase would have been nice.
Once back in Moab, a local shop confirmed the destruction on my case. He couldn't even get it apart to see what happened, but we basically think that viscous coupling in there had enough. There were no donor cases in Moab or Grand Junction that I could find, so my next best option was to get one out of Denver. I had a rebuild shop, A1 Transmissions (ask for Will), figure out a solution. This was before I knew of the 242HD, so he built a 242j with the correct input shaft. He was also nice enough to get this out the door in one day and ship it overnight (don't ask me what a 90# Tcase cost to ship 400 miles overnight Fedex). I had a salt of the earth local Moab mechanic put it in. He was a Jeep genius, but had a little trouble getting the linkage to work correctly. Not sure what he did, be he said he had to weld something on the linkage to get full range of gears.
Since it was a 242 non HD, I didn't need the rear driveshaft. Before reading this thread I didn't know there was a difference with the HD, but I wouldn't have known it because it towed my trailer back to Denver with ease and I wheeled pretty hard with it all summer. I think if you aren't towing up to the factory limit, the regular 242 with V8 should be fine. I sold that Jeep last fall and now I'm building another one.....
So I've bought another 2004 Limited that already had a 4-5" lift on it, but has that pesky 247 in it. I'm not waiting for this one to strand me like the last one, so I've had A1 put another case together for me like they did before. Basically all they have to do is put a different input shaft on a regular 242. I'm aware a 242HD has higher specs, but I'd rather have a standard 242 that's been completely rebuilt than a 100k mile 242HD and have to buy rear driveshaft too.
I took it to a Jeep guy here in Denver today to help me put it in, and it all bolts up fine except he can't figure out how to get the stock WJ cable to operate the lever on the 242 case. The lever on the 247 case is about 3" long and the one on the new case is about 1.5" long, also the new case's lever is pointed in the wrong direction, if we try and rotate that lever to a direction that works with the WJ cable the lever hits the case and it won't go into 2wd. I'm not sure what that guy in Moab did to make it work, but I need to figure out how to get it to work like my last one.
This is where I'm reaching out to you WJ gearheads. Anyone bolt up a 242j like this to a v8?? What does is take to get the linkage to work properly? Here are pictures of my new Tcase. Sorry it's so shiny, they paint it up all pretty when they rebuild it.
Thanks in advance for all of your help!!