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Unread 06-05-2007, 09:30 AM   #16
SuperWade2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jerry Bransford
You've heard my thoughts about an axle that heavy for your anticipated tire size and wheeling needs, I won't repeat them other than to say I'd go nothing bigger than 33 spline and lose the 1/2" thick axle tubes.
I respect your opinion Jerry, but my thought process is that someday *maybe* I will goto some larger tires 35"+ and trailer this thing around and do some serious stuff... I just don't know yet... so for me, it's worth a fairly nominal amount of money (just a couple hundred $$$ by my estimation) to already have this thing in the event that I do.

Yes, the weight is an issue... but the trade off for a few extra lbs vs. the reduced chance that I'll ever have to swap the axle again is very tempting. It's not like I care about my gas mileage (otherwise I wouldn't drive a Jeep)...

*** EDIT ***
FYI, the Solid HD D44 Axle is 275 lbs per them, and David@Northridge4x4 said ~175-200lbs for his D44 Assembly...
*** EDIT ***

SW2

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Last edited by SuperWade2; 06-05-2007 at 02:06 PM..
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Unread 06-05-2007, 10:16 AM   #17
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I won't beat this dead horse any longer but here's just a last couple of thoughts. And my weight concern had nothing to do with anything but just plain general trail performance.

Two weekends ago, there was a TJ in front of me doing a very tough trail with a very nice but heavy set of axles. They were really just plain too big & heavy for the 35" tires he was running. He was getting high-centered way too often with them and he struggled most of the day. For his $8,000 in axles, he wasn't doing as well as I was right behind him.

And then the lightweight stripped down Toyota truck that was behind me was the only vehicle in our group to make it up a waterfall that the rest of us had to winch up. His lighter weight gave him a real advantage over the rest of us.

I never really thought about weight that much until I started doing some tougher trails and wow, I was surprised how much difference a little additional weight makes. I now remove everything I can before a tough trail and the difference is definitely very noticeable. Unsprung or not unsprung weight.

I'm done here, I really don't mean to beat a dead horse so I apologize if this is getting to be too much... but there really is just a point where some axles are just too heavy for the application and I think that particular one is in this case.

This photo doesn't prove anything but it sure bugged the 14 Jeep owners in our group when that lightweight Toyota following me made it through everything without much trouble including not needing the winch at this waterfall where everyone else did. I hooked the winch up right after this photo was taken. His lighter weight really made a difference, though his slightly longer wheelbase helped at times too.
pumpkineaterjerryspinningwi.jpg  
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Unread 06-05-2007, 10:16 AM   #18
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Speaking of the "never needing to upgrade", in that price range of $3k isnt a dana 60 from dynatrack a better option?
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Unread 06-05-2007, 10:23 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by XtremeJeep
Speaking of the "never needing to upgrade", in that price range of $3k isnt a dana 60 from dynatrack a better option?
I got a quote from Dynatrac and it's about $4200+Shipping for a similarly setup D60...
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Unread 06-05-2007, 01:27 PM   #20
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You really think that axle would be a good option for 38"-40" tires? Sure its beefy, but I didn't see anything about them including a magical ring and pinion or what size axle shaft bearings it uses. Not saying its a primed grenade, but the R&P is the weakest link in that housing, which is still just a D44. Is it a good deal for what you get...sure is. Is it a good deal for what you need? You will have to answer that question.

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Unread 06-05-2007, 01:41 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kerndone
You really think that axle would be a good option for 38"-40" tires? Sure its beefy, but I didn't see anything about them including a magical ring and pinion or what size axle shaft bearings it uses. Not saying its a primed grenade, but the R&P is the weakest link in that housing, which is still just a D44. Is it a good deal for what you get...sure is. Is it a good deal for what you need? You will have to answer that question.

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The axle uses set 20 bearings (Ford big bearing).
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Unread 06-05-2007, 01:52 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by big97redtj
The axle uses set 20 bearings (Ford big bearing).
Thats good to know, I was doing the "math" and I figured they needed to be bigger than set 10 bearings.
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Unread 06-05-2007, 02:31 PM   #23
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I have some experience with all of this.

point 1.

You can NOT build this axle for $3k. here is why:
the RD 109 ARB retails for over $900
alloy USA sells the shafts for $300
a TJ housing OR 8.8 with the bracket kit is going to be about $800
gears, bearings, seals brakes etc. and you are over $3k even DIY junkyard axle.

point 2.

I have a TJ on 35" krawlers and I wheel it very hard very often. I ran chromoly 30 spline shafts for 3 years till I broke one on jackhammer, them the next week one on Duran falls. 3 years is a VERY good amount of time for anything in my drivetrain to hold up, but the 4.56 gears were 6 years old and still fine. because of this, I put in the RD 109 and alloy USA 35 spline shafts into my TJ D-44. I expect that the ring gear is now the weak link in the axle, but the entire axle is much stronger than it was.

point 3.

The 14 bolt has it's place, and that place is next to 40+ inch tires on a full size rig. stock rear d-60 shafts are much weaker than chomo 44 shafts, and the center section hangs down an extra inch or so.

weight...
I would rather not break than be light.
The picture shown is the first waterfall on pumpkin eater. toyatas all walk up it and 93" wheelbase rigs all struggle... just like on every other waterfall in the world..wheelbase rules. Strange thing about that waterfall.. sometimes I make it, sometimes not. I don't know why. I have seen stripped down trail buggies climb things i could not make it up only because of wieght (the waterfall on backdoor especially), but I have no desire to strip the 1000 pounds off my TJ needed for that. I like the body, seats, and all 6 cylinders. i also like the crusher corners, skid plates and HP 44 with 1/2" tubes in the front. I built a lighter front 44 with TJ axle tubes and it bent in the center of the long tube in about 2 years.

I couldn't agree more with they guy that said "for an extra $400 why would you not do it?"

I think this axle is an excellent deal and would hold up fine to tires in the 37-38" range
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Unread 06-05-2007, 03:21 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elusive
I couldn't agree more with they guy that said "for an extra $400 why would you not do it?"

I think this axle is an excellent deal and would hold up fine to tires in the 37-38" range
Thanks for the input!!!

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Unread 06-05-2007, 05:33 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by big97redtj
The axle uses set 20 bearings (Ford big bearing).
Thats what I was going to say. I know lots of full size guys that are getting away with running 38's on that style of 44. They aren't even using 35 spline shafts either. Very rarely do they have problems with the ring and pinions.
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Unread 06-10-2007, 09:36 PM   #26
SuperWade2
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Just curious if there were folks out these that have ordered or are considering getting this axle...

Wonder how many Solid is building and selling?

I'm seriously considering still...

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Unread 06-10-2007, 09:56 PM   #27
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Superwade,

I bought a read axle assembly from Northridge. I works great. That being said, I would not hesitate to buy the axle you posted. It seems like a great buy.

I am toying with the idea of going full width, been tossing it around for a while now, but getting closer to making a decision.
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Unread 06-10-2007, 10:22 PM   #28
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have you considered building a ford 9"
the currie housings are pretty cheap and strong
youd end up being pricier then that 44 but alot stronger and a bit liter and a bit better ground clearence
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Unread 06-10-2007, 10:30 PM   #29
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I'm not building anything... I'm a bolt-in guy... Flame me all you want...I don't' have the time, energy, patience, tools, etc to do much of this work... I have the money and don't' mind paying other people to make superior products that I can just bolt in myself.

That's why I was looking at the Norhridge4x4 Axle or this one... the Dynatrac and Currie completes were up over $4000/ea...I didn't really want something used, so was only considering new complete bolt-in assemblies.

Sw2
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Unread 06-11-2007, 12:53 AM   #30
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This seems great to me.
Anyone know anything about these Wilwood brakes? Any good? Replacing worn parts going to be difficult?
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