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Unread 04-29-2009, 04:21 PM   #1
nathanielt
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Dana 44 swap out or regear the dana 35?

So, I'm set on getting some 33's on my jeep soon, but before I do these kind of things I'm a bit anal about researching it.

After reading a lot of threads, I've come to the realization that 3.07 gears aren't optimal. So, today I took a look under the jeep and, of course, I have 3.07 gears.

So, here's my question. I'm going to get my jeep regeared, at least, before I get the lift and bigger tires. But i'm also wondering if I want to sink money into regearing a dana 35 if the dana 44 axel is that much better. I dont' know if I'll ever go bigger than 33" tires, but I'd like the option down the line to make that decision.

I'm a bit confused on the differences, gearing, etc.

Here's what I have now

Front Dana 30
Rear Dana 35

3.07 gears

If I swap out the rear axle do I need to do something about the front? Would both the front and rear have to be regeared?

If the Dana 30 would be a problem for the front, could i use the dana 35 rear? Would that be a good axel for the front?

I'm doing more research, trying to figure out what my net cost would be if I sold the dana 35 in the rear and bought a dana 44, and had it geared to 4.56, but I'm not exactly sure what else I should be looking for. If someone's done this (Sold dana 35 to buy a dana 44), how much did it end up costing you? Or, if i could move the dana 35 to the front, and sell the dana 30 (if that's even possible, or there's even a point to it.

So, main question. Regear dana 35 or swap axel, and do I need to do anything with the front? Also, axel or axle? lol, jk...kinda

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Unread 04-29-2009, 05:16 PM   #2
Jeepguy1977
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Rubi D44 that had already been regeared to the same ratio as my D30, $1200 with shipping.

D35s are hit and miss. If you break one, parts are fairly cheap from others who have gotten rid of them. You won't get much from selling your D35. I am mainly replacing mine due to failure of parts that make the unit overall pretty much irrepairable.
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Unread 04-29-2009, 05:25 PM   #3
mateas
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Like you I've researched until I can't see straight on this. What I've determined is a 35, for the most part, sucks. I bought a built 44 (by built I mean disk braked/locked/alloy shafted/4.10'd) for $900. Gonna put that in in May, and for the type of wheeling I know I'll be doing with this thing, I think my factory 30 front will do me just fine after a matching regear to 4.10 (has 3.73's from the factory). I'm running 35's and feel very confident that I'll never break a front 30, I don't like rock crawling, I prefer mud myself, and I drive with my brain, not the skinny pedal.
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Unread 04-29-2009, 05:27 PM   #4
Pvt_Joker
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I wonder how much you could get for selling a d35
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Unread 04-29-2009, 05:35 PM   #5
Varnish
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Options off the top of my head:
Regear front/rear dana 30/35 = $1200 (weak rear axle, no locker)
Regear front/rear super dana 35 kit = $1600 guesstimate? (pretty strong setup, locker rear)

Now if you go to 3.73 or 4.10s over a lower gearing (numerically higher) you can find factory axles with those ratios:
Find cherokee front w/3.73, TJ dana 44 rear w/3.73 = $1500? depends on deals you can find (high pinion front axle, strong rear axle, no rear locker)
Find cherokee front w/4.10 or Rubi front w/4.10, Rubi dana 44 rear w/4.10 = $2000? depends on deals you can find
You can also do either of these two options with a Ford Explorer 8.8 rear axle that will have to get brackets welded on. Cost depends on how much you pay for axle & optionally labor. Bracket kits are $250-$300.

You can also order a newly built rear dana 44 with gearing/locker of your choice for like $2400 and then regear your front to match for another $5-600.

I'd say all of these would suit you fine other than regearing your dana 35 as is. At a minimum I would go for the super 35 during the regear.
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Unread 04-29-2009, 05:36 PM   #6
RogueSpear2023
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Ok to the OP you have several options,

Option 1: a get a set of D30 front and D35 rear out of 4cyl Tj that will give you 4.10 gears which are fine for 33s not optimal but better than what you have. $500+/-

Option 2: Keep what you have regear to 4.56 run the 33s the D35 for the most part will hold up under 33s as long as you don't plan on putting a locker in the rear D35. $1200

Option 3: You want to put a locker in the rear, so put a super kit in the D35 regear at the same time. A super D35 will hold up to 35" tires Super kit will run you roughly $1000, plus regear $600, plus another $600 to regear front.

Option 4: Buy a D44 and regear everything. $1200

The main thing you need to decide is whether you will be happy with 4.10s or not. Regearing front and rear is going to cost $1200 roughly. So what is you budget? You can't put a rear axle in the front this is not possible, because your front axle needs to be able to turn, which rear axles are generally not capable of.
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Unread 04-29-2009, 05:40 PM   #7
mateas
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Something you might try as far as regearing cost, go to your nearest Jeep dealer and ask to talk to a mechanic that does gear set-up, ask him if he does work on the side. Sometimes you'll get lucky and find one that will do it for cheap (by cheap I mean $150 or $200 per axle). I was lucky, I had a buddy that worked the Ford parts counter, he in turn knew all the mechanics and one that would do the gears in my Ranger for $150.
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Unread 05-02-2009, 12:08 PM   #8
nathanielt
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Thanks for the tips. I think I'm gonna start looking for a dana 44, so I can put a locker on it. Took me a bit to respond, because I first had to research what a locker is! Lol.

I'm probably going to regear to 4.56. Is there any benefit to get a dana 44 front axle, as well? Or would the dana 30 hold up fine since it's in the front?

I'm not planning on doing any crazy wheeling, probably just once a month or so. My thing is that I don't want to decide later that I do want to do something else and find out that I just wasted money building up one thing that I'm not going to be able to use later.
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Unread 05-02-2009, 12:38 PM   #9
RogueSpear2023
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Leave the D30 in the front it is plenty strong, all the way to 35s even with a locker, at some point if you bust the D30 shafts with 35s and a locker you may want to put chromoly shafts in. There is not bolt in D44 for the front, the only one there is is the Rubi D44 Front which has the same shafts and outers as the D30 which are the weak parts anyway. The only advantage to a D44 front is you can go down to 5.38 gearing. Find a D44 rear and put a locker in or find one out of a Rubi which will already have a locker in it, LSD when unlocked. Now if you didn't want to regear right away, you could find a D30 out of a 4 cyl TJ, and the get a Rubi D44 that will net you 4.10 gears and you could see how you like it before you regear to 4.56. That's what I would do if I didn't already have a Rubicon.
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Unread 05-02-2009, 05:01 PM   #10
nathanielt
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RogueSpear2023 View Post
Leave the D30 in the front it is plenty strong, all the way to 35s even with a locker, at some point if you bust the D30 shafts with 35s and a locker you may want to put chromoly shafts in. There is not bolt in D44 for the front, the only one there is is the Rubi D44 Front which has the same shafts and outers as the D30 which are the weak parts anyway. The only advantage to a D44 front is you can go down to 5.38 gearing. Find a D44 rear and put a locker in or find one out of a Rubi which will already have a locker in it, LSD when unlocked. Now if you didn't want to regear right away, you could find a D30 out of a 4 cyl TJ, and the get a Rubi D44 that will net you 4.10 gears and you could see how you like it before you regear to 4.56. That's what I would do if I didn't already have a Rubicon.
That's a good idea. I have plenty of time to look around, no hurry. And I like that it gives me the option of deciding if I want to regear to 4.56 without spending too much before hand. I'm going to start looking at some junkyards and see what I can find.
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Unread 05-02-2009, 05:32 PM   #11
Jeepguy1977
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nathanielt View Post
That's a good idea. I have plenty of time to look around, no hurry. And I like that it gives me the option of deciding if I want to regear to 4.56 without spending too much before hand. I'm going to start looking at some junkyards and see what I can find.
What transmission do you have?
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Unread 05-02-2009, 06:03 PM   #12
nathanielt
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Originally Posted by Jeepguy1977 View Post
What transmission do you have?
All I know is it's a 5 spd manual. I'd have to take a look at it when I get back. Are they all the same though for that year?
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Unread 05-03-2009, 08:58 PM   #13
nathanielt
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Alright, so I've been looking around a bit and I did find dana 30/35 front / rear axles geared to 4.56 which is what I'd want for 33's (that's ideal, right?) A guy on the forum is selling them for $800, so I messaged him.

So, since I'm back and forth between here and texas I took a look around my area there and found a dana 35 rear axel with 4.56 gears for 150, but it has a lockright locker, which I've read is NOT a good idea to have a locker on a dana 35, right?

Waiting to hear back and see if the guy still has them in SD, because that sounds perfect for what I want. If I want to go bigger or get a locker in the future, I'll swap for a dana 44 or get a super kit. But for now, I'm only going to get into some mild offroading
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Unread 05-03-2009, 10:36 PM   #14
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You could remove that lockright, sell it, and probably more than pay for stock spider gears.
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Unread 05-04-2009, 08:57 AM   #15
nathanielt
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Varnish View Post
You could remove that lockright, sell it, and probably more than pay for stock spider gears.

I was considering that actually, lol. I'd probably have gone to take a look if I were in TX right now.

You're from Juneau?
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