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Unread 03-22-2015, 06:37 PM   #1
ikidd
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Bit of a design quandary...

I have a 76 CJ7 with the Quadratrac. Consequently, the diffs are both passenger side. I also have a 350 SBC Gen 1 ready to pull. I wanted to go to a manual transmission, not anything super crawler, but a little more ratio than the TH400 offers obviously.

I would obviously like to bolt up on the transmission, and I'm not doing a lot of lift, so I was worried a NV4500 would be too tall. I was leaning to a SM420 if I can locate one, or a SM465.

I'm looking for some thoughts about which way to go here. I'm open to dropping the tcase for something else, but I want to keep the stock narrowtrack, and other than changing the front and rear axles, I think I'm stuck with the QT or a D18 (not sure if there's a huge advantage to changing to that). But I have to keep in mind how to adapt whatever transmission to either the QT tcase or deal with passenger pumpkins if I get another tcase altogether. I don't see any right/right GM tcases.

I don't need a rockcrawler, but I'd like to get a drivetrain that isn't horrendous by the time I'm done. BTW, I'll be putting in 1 piece axles once I make up my mind on this.

Appreciate any responses to help me get out of my stall here.

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Unread 03-22-2015, 06:42 PM   #2
y2k-fxst
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If it was me, even though it will add to the cost of your build, I would go with a narrowed Ford 9" rear axle. Then keep the rest of the drive line (motor, trans, transfer case) GM. If nothing else it will keep parts scrounging easier, also what you will spend for adapters to mate your Quadratrac transfer case to a GM overdrive trans will help offset the cost of narrowing the axle. And you will automatically end up with better inner axles.
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Unread 03-22-2015, 06:52 PM   #3
ikidd
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Quote:
Originally Posted by y2k-fxst View Post
If it was me, even though it will add to the cost of your build, I would go with a narrowed Ford 9" rear axle. Then keep the rest of the drive line (motor, trans, transfer case) GM. If nothing else it will keep parts scrounging easier, also what you will spend for adapters to mate your Quadratrac transfer case to a GM overdrive trans will help offset the cost of narrowing the axle. And you will automatically end up with better inner axles.
Then I end up with an issue on both axles, because passenger front as well. I could try to find a D300 and go with a narrowtrack D44 from a 72-75 (again find that). The axles seem like the stumbling block either way. Trying to find ones that match a GM is as hard as finding a tcase that matches the axles.
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Unread 03-22-2015, 06:58 PM   #4
TIPPEDITOVER
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Sell it and buy one that has what you want. You will be money ahead as well as saved a boatload of time searching, swapping, ect.
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Unread 03-22-2015, 08:18 PM   #5
y2k-fxst
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Chevy NP203 or NP205 should be available in passenger (got my left and right corrected) side drop front with centered rear.
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Unread 03-23-2015, 12:12 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by y2k-fxst View Post
Chevy NP203 or NP205 should be available in drivers side drop front with centered rear.
You mean pass drop right?
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Unread 03-23-2015, 01:22 AM   #7
Pathkiller
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The simple question that springs to mind is why do you want to swap what you've already got? The easiest solution is to keep your original drive train intact. If your CJ7 is intact and running you'd be far better off selling or trading it for one with a drive train that is more similar to what you want.
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Unread 03-23-2015, 05:45 AM   #8
colojeepguy
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How about a Dana 44 out of a CJ?
72-75 had 1 piece 30 spline axles, plenty strong for your application, and all kinds of gear & locker options are made for it.
Then use the 4 speed of your choice adapted to a Dana 20 or Dana 300 tcase.
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Unread 03-23-2015, 09:50 AM   #9
y2k-fxst
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TIPPEDITOVER View Post
You mean pass drop right?
Yep
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Unread 03-23-2015, 10:17 AM   #10
ikidd
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pathkiller View Post
The simple question that springs to mind is why do you want to swap what you've already got? The easiest solution is to keep your original drive train intact. If your CJ7 is intact and running you'd be far better off selling or trading it for one with a drive train that is more similar to what you want.
304 is blowing exhaust out into the coolant and overheating quickly. I'm not really interested in rebuilding a carbed engine with low power and poor mileage. I also want a manual Xmission so sticking to a GM powertrain seems wise.
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Unread 03-23-2015, 10:21 AM   #11
ikidd
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Quote:
Originally Posted by y2k-fxst View Post
Chevy NP203 or NP205 should be available in drivers side drop front with centered rear.
Not sure why I thought they were all driver side drop, but I see the GMs were passenger. That gets me around 1 axle change at least, probably to the narrowtrack 44 to keep the width. I was kinda resigned to this, frankly, unless I can get an adapter for the QT.

The 205 seems most interesting, since it can be converted to 2-stick. Again, I'm not rockcrawling this so the poor low ratio doesn't bother me.

It looks like these were typically with SM465s pre 85. I haven't looked too far into mating the 465 to something relatively new like the 98 350 SBC from a K2500 I'm using. What do you do with the ECM if it's used to seeing a 4L60E mated up, does it need a flash?
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Unread 03-23-2015, 11:32 AM   #12
y2k-fxst
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Ford was the only one that has always been driver's side drop that I know of.
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Unread 03-23-2015, 11:42 AM   #13
y2k-fxst
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ikidd View Post
Not sure why I thought they were all driver side drop, but I see the GMs were passenger. That gets me around 1 axle change at least, probably to the narrowtrack 44 to keep the width. I was kinda resigned to this, frankly, unless I can get an adapter for the QT.
Only problem might be actually finding a narrow track 44, then you will still have to upgrade to 1 piece axles if you want strength. Still think the narrowed Ford 9" will end up cheaper.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ikidd View Post
The 205 seems most interesting, since it can be converted to 2-stick. Again, I'm not rock crawling this so the poor low ratio doesn't bother me.

It looks like these were typically with SM465s pre 85. I haven't looked too far into mating the 465 to something relatively new like the 98 350 SBC from a K2500 I'm using. What do you do with the ECM if it's used to seeing a 4L60E mated up, does it need a flash?
Would probably have to either get a custom harness, or a stand-alone engine controller.
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Unread 03-23-2015, 01:03 PM   #14
Pathkiller
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Originally Posted by y2k-fxst View Post
Only problem might be actually finding a narrow track 44, then you will still have to upgrade to 1 piece axles if you want strength. Still thing the narrowed Ford 9" will end up cheaper.
?? The 72-75 version has one piece 30-splined flanged axles. No need to upgrade anything. These are not the earlier 19-splined axles you're thinking of. They are also used in postal Jeeps, and thus are quite common.
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Unread 03-23-2015, 02:57 PM   #15
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'72-73 Commandos also had this D44 axle and the spring perches are correct position to make them a bolt in for '76 and up CJs.
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