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Unread 07-22-2014, 12:44 PM   #1
Crankcase
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Wj WJ Axle Swap

Just bought front and rear vari-lok axles D30/D44a 3.73 to replace my D30/D35 3.55 axles for my 242 4.0.

I know a thing or two on the drive train design on the WJ, but is there anything I should be weary of? And/or gain access to vital online resources.

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Unread 07-22-2014, 12:57 PM   #2
99WJ539918
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If you have the complete able assemblies then no, you'll be fine. They're a direct swap. Make sure you have the property fluid.
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Unread 07-22-2014, 11:02 PM   #3
2ndhandWJman
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I did the same swap last year on my '03 Laredo. The axles bolts in 100%, no fuss. I had to have my rear driveshaft shortened about 1.5", and when I swapped to the ' u-joint on both ends ' of a front drive shaft, I was at about 1.5" too short. I provided the shop a drive shaft that was the correct diameter, just way too long. They used it as raw material and made a front shaft that fit nicely.
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Unread 07-23-2014, 12:17 AM   #4
evilcairn
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Pew , swap 100% . Need a 44a without lsd :'(
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Unread 07-23-2014, 10:26 AM   #5
Crankcase
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2ndhandWJman View Post
I did the same swap last year on my '03 Laredo. The axles bolts in 100%, no fuss. I had to have my rear driveshaft shortened about 1.5", and when I swapped to the ' u-joint on both ends ' of a front drive shaft, I was at about 1.5" too short. I provided the shop a drive shaft that was the correct diameter, just way too long. They used it as raw material and made a front shaft that fit nicely.
I am going to be given the rear DS with the rear axle. Currently I have a single u-joint on each end of the rear. Not sure what the new setup will be.

As for the front, the new axle will have a u-joint yoke, which is the same as my current setup; U-joint yoke and rezeppa TC connection.

It should be a plug and play driveshaft wise? The D30 will be identical, and the rear I will be provided with the new DS. Will the splines match up on the rear DS transfercase side?
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Unread 07-26-2014, 08:49 AM   #6
99WJ539918
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If you're getting the Dana 44A then, unless it was swapped prior, it came out of a 4.7L and I think the 4.7L rear driveshaft is shorter than your 4.0L.
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Unread 07-26-2014, 02:38 PM   #7
2ndhandWJman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crankcase View Post
I am going to be given the rear DS with the rear axle. Currently I have a single u-joint on each end of the rear. Not sure what the new setup will be.

As for the front, the new axle will have a u-joint yoke, which is the same as my current setup; U-joint yoke and rezeppa TC connection.

It should be a plug and play driveshaft wise? The D30 will be identical, and the rear I will be provided with the new DS. Will the splines match up on the rear DS transfercase side?
I know that when I was gathering the pieces for my conversion, the "donor" rear DS came from the V8 Jerp that the axles came from. The splined output shaft at the T-case ( the stock 242 that was in my WJ) mated fine with the donor DS yoke, the tubing was just too short.
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Unread 07-27-2014, 07:38 PM   #8
Crankcase
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2ndhandWJman View Post
I know that when I was gathering the pieces for my conversion, the "donor" rear DS came from the V8 Jerp that the axles came from. The splined output shaft at the T-case ( the stock 242 that was in my WJ) mated fine with the donor DS yoke, the tubing was just too short.
So you're saying, since I have the rear DS that came from the V8/D44a Jeep, that I will be fine? I only ask because I am changing out the u-joints on the DS and I need to know which ones to install them onto.
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Unread 07-27-2014, 07:43 PM   #9
2ndhandWJman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crankcase View Post
So you're saying, since I have the rear DS that came from the V8/D44a Jeep, that I will be fine? I only ask because I am changing out the u-joints on the DS and I need to know which ones to install them onto.
You should be OK as far as the splines are concerned, but my overall DS was too short to work. I had to get it re-tubed to a longer length for it to work.
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Unread 07-27-2014, 08:09 PM   #10
Crankcase
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But I have both:

4.0 242 D35 rear DS
4.7 247 D44a rear DS

I'm under the impression that the latter option shaft would be the correct length for the axle swap
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Unread 07-28-2014, 01:05 PM   #11
2ndhandWJman
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I never tried the stock Dana 30 rear drive shaft, it got scrapped with the old axle so I can't tell you for certain if it will bolt up or not. Once you get the rear axle swapped, a tape measure will give you the answers that you need.
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Unread 07-28-2014, 07:51 PM   #12
Crankcase
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2ndhandWJman View Post
I never tried the stock Dana 30 rear drive shaft, it got scrapped with the old axle so I can't tell you for certain if it will bolt up or not. Once you get the rear axle swapped, a tape measure will give you the answers that you need.
Drive shaft measurement is quite new to me.. Where on the slip yoke (transfer case) and where on the diff yoke do I measure exactly?
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Unread 07-29-2014, 04:32 AM   #13
wvracer821
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When I swapped in my D44a I used my factory rear shaft (4.0L 242 D35) it is about an inch and some change longer than the D44A but at 3 inches of lift it was just fine. The D44a pinion is a little longer that the D35, that is the reason for the difference in shaft length. Front shaft is the same length across the board as far as I know. I Did swap in a front shaft from a ZJ becasue it had a double cardan joint and it is a hair longer. I'm at 6.5 inches of lift not with no negative vibes
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Unread 07-30-2014, 08:31 AM   #14
Crankcase
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wvracer821 View Post
When I swapped in my D44a I used my factory rear shaft (4.0L 242 D35) it is about an inch and some change longer than the D44A but at 3 inches of lift it was just fine. The D44a pinion is a little longer that the D35, that is the reason for the difference in shaft length. Front shaft is the same length across the board as far as I know. I Did swap in a front shaft from a ZJ becasue it had a double cardan joint and it is a hair longer. I'm at 6.5 inches of lift not with no negative vibes
I'm at 2" of lift, coils with new isolators all round. Little less lift than you, I'll use both shafts and see which one is a better fit.

Thanks for the input wvracer.
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Unread 07-30-2014, 07:24 PM   #15
dlundblad
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2ndhandWJman View Post
I did the same swap last year on my '03 Laredo. The axles bolts in 100%, no fuss. I had to have my rear driveshaft shortened about 1.5", and when I swapped to the ' u-joint on both ends ' of a front drive shaft, I was at about 1.5" too short. I provided the shop a drive shaft that was the correct diameter, just way too long. They used it as raw material and made a front shaft that fit nicely.
How hard was it to reconnect the parking brake cables?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Crankcase View Post
I'm at 2" of lift, coils with new isolators all round. Little less lift than you, I'll use both shafts and see which one is a better fit.

Thanks for the input wvracer.
This is good to know. I too am at 2 inches of lift. Be sure to post whether or not the 4.0/ D35 drive shaft works.
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