Please don't call me an AXLE - JeepForum.com
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post #1 of 61 Old 01-28-2011, 03:39 PM Thread Starter
ralfwho
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Please don't call me an AXLE

OK, here is my tale of woe. Hopefully it will brighten your day. At least a dozen people are very lucky - I'm sucking up the bad Karma for all of them.

We have a 97 XJ in the family that has been handed around from son-to-son-to-dad. 90K miles. The rear-end had been getting louder and louder and finally blew out. OK, we can fix this. I went to a local junk yard and picked-up a DANA35 3.07 with ABS. $300. Took it to my machine shop of choice and told him to replace whatever needed to be, and he did. Well, the DANA35 turned out to be a Chrysler 8.25 so after another $350 We were no closer to getting the XJ running.

OK, not the biggest deal, we can put this one up on EBAY and maybe I won’t get hit for a terrible loss.

Went to another local yard on the other side of town (first was 40 miles NORTH, the other was 45 miles SOUTH – this will be important later), and got another DANA35. But, and here is the part I’m not happy to admit, I had forgotten how to identify one from the other. So after 45 miles back to the machine shop in a near-blinding snow storm, we established that, yes, this one TOO was a Chrysler 8.25. Joe, the machine shop guy actually had to leave the building to keep from laughing in my face. What’s the buzz piped up Skippy (not his real name) a gear-guy who was there getting some bearings pressed in. I explained the deal to which he remarked, “Call Roberto (again not his real name) – he will have exactly what you need. He got Roberto on his cell and I explained what I needed – A DANA35, ABS, 3.07, from a man-trans XJ, if that mattered. “NO PROBLEM, BOSS”, we’ve got one. I’m looking at it now:”

“Swell”, I said, I’ll be right there. “THERE” was 35 miles north in Waukegan and what Roberto didn’t tell me is that he was looking towards the Jeep section of his huge snow-covered U-pull-it yard. An hour and one frozen toe later, I left, AXLE-LESS, to the sound of Roberto’s “Sorry, boss. Sure THOUGHT I have one”.

That was ROUND TWO. There are two more rounds to go!

Enter the internet search for “vintage” Jeep parts and I stumbled on a place on the east coast that boasted something like, “If Jeep made it, WE have it”. So I sent them an email, and it said EXACTLY THIS:

I am looking for a DANA35 to fit a 97-99 Jeep Cherokee. Must have 3.07 and ABS. If it matters, should come out of manual trans car.
Please quote with shipping to 60004 (business).
Mileage not important - will be rebuilt.
Thanks,

I got a quick reply that they had one - $300 plus $182 to ship. I sent them another note that said, EXACTLY THIS:

OK, please bear with me - I've had terrible experiences lately with folks who were SURE they had what I needed.

Five questions:
1) This is out of a 97-99 nonGRAND Cherokee?
2) DANA 35?
3) ABS and 3.07?
4) Where are you located?
5) Can you send me a pic of the differential housing? (I just had to eat the shipping on what was supposed to be a Dana 35 that turned out to be a Chrysler 8.25 after the guy SWORE was a DANA 35)

And they responded with this note. And after reading it, I’m sure you will feel and confident as I did.

“I have been doing this for 20 years. So long as you are giving me the correct information then yes you are getting what you need. So yes to all of your questions. We are located in (name of town removed) I dont have additional photos of my items, you are welcome to come take a look yourself.”

This was it, I was convinced. The Jeep will be running soon.

Fast forward to this week. I called the machine shop to verify that the axle would be ready for pick-up on Friday, 1/28/2011. Sure, said Joe, no problem. Friday I stopped by and he said there was a slight problem fitting the pinion seal, looks like the box had the wrong part, but he’d go to NAPA and straighten it out.

You KNOW where this is going, right? Yes, another Chrysler 8.25. And oh yes, the box that contained the seals for the axle somehow got a mix of 8.25 and DANA35 parts. That explained why the pinion seal was not fitting. The box was supposed to be for the DANA35; the wheel seals were Chrysler 8.25 so they fit. The pinion seal was DANA35 so it didn’t. Notwithstanding the 20 years in the biz the Jeep maven had, I was now no closer to a running XJ than two months before. AND I had this to show for my efforts:

1) A $750 Chrysler 8.25
2) A truck rental bill of $125 for the trip south and then north
3) A $732 Chrysler 8.25

Sure, shame on me for not checking the last axle that got sent from the east coast. But I was operating on “…So long as you are giving me the correct information then yes you are getting what you need. So yes to all of your questions…” At some point “we know what we’re talking about” needs to be taken at face value. Apparently, however, this was not THAT point.

We’ll see what the east coast is going to do to make this right.

Meanwhile, anybody want to buy a rebuilt Chrysler 8.25? I’m assuming the east coast wants theirs back…

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post #2 of 61 Old 01-28-2011, 03:44 PM
foggybottombob
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I would not pay 50 cents for a Dana 35 no matter what it had in it. Why would you not change to an 8.25" and forget the silly ABS?
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post #3 of 61 Old 01-28-2011, 03:46 PM
BriansCJ
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Why not just get rid of the ABS and upgrade to the stronger 8.25?


Sounds like no one knew what they were doing and you came out on the **** end of the stick.


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post #4 of 61 Old 01-28-2011, 03:49 PM
Nickell80
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I would've just used the first 8.25 but just take out the front drive shaft until you could get new gears to match, then you could have better gears and a better axle.
Unless you really need 4wd which it sounds like you do with the blizzard and all.
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post #5 of 61 Old 01-28-2011, 03:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nickell80 View Post
I would've just used the first 8.25 but just take out the front drive shaft until you could get new gears to match, then you could have better gears and a better axle.
Unless you really need 4wd which it sounds like you do with the blizzard and all.
Wouldnt the 8.25 already have matching 3.07s.


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post #6 of 61 Old 01-28-2011, 04:00 PM
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I have no idea, I have a stock 2wd ZJ Haha.
But even if it did then that would make things a lot easier.
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post #7 of 61 Old 01-28-2011, 04:27 PM
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I like how everyone assumes that everyone else knows the difference between Jeep axles. As if we all slid out of the birth canal with a breakapart diagram of Jeep parts in one fist, and a wrench in the other. Not everyone can ID an axle just by looking at it, mechanic or not. And especially not junk yard personnel. MOST of what I know about my Jeep was learned from hundreds of hours on multiple Forums, heavy research & hanging with Jeep people. And Jeeps are the only vehicles I have any significant knowledge about. This is only because I have one.

So here's this poor n00b with an unbelievable tale of woe. Granted, he should have 1) come here first 2) done more research 3) pics, pics, pics 4) blah, blah, Coulda woulda shoulda. But believe it or not people will pay good money for a D35. (Case in point) They sell on CL all day long for $300. And if I weren't wheeling mine I'd still be holding on to my D35 for dear life. Because my ABS worked perfect & I happen to like ABS.

To the OP: I feel your pain, but I wouldn't touch your rebuilt axle with a 10 ft pole. I don't trust your mechanics. The least they could have done was school you on what to get. My mechanic does it all the time, telling me how to make sure I'm getting the right part. I'm hoping you learned 2 lessons: 1) research your problem with JEEP people, not "car" people. 2) Macho machismo is not to be trusted (I've been doing this for 20 years, bla bla ...) Big freaking deal if you don't know your product. People will do/say a lot of crap to make a sale. Good luck getting him to take it back. You'll still eat the cost of shipping. If you weren't in IL I'd come take that XJ off your hands.

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post #8 of 61 Old 01-28-2011, 05:34 PM
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This may be lame as hell, but I keep a picture on my cell phone of all dif covers for quick reference in the you-pull-it yards.

also if your in the city the North ave/ Cicero, you pull it yard number # 5 I think, has more xj then I can sometimes let mt brain process at once. Then you could hit me up and I could help you out if you need it.
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post #9 of 61 Old 01-28-2011, 05:55 PM
foggybottombob
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These are what came stock on an XJ ever. Take 1 minute to look at this pic and then you are set for life on IDing XJ axles.

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post #10 of 61 Old 01-28-2011, 08:15 PM
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The Chrysler 8.25 is actually better than the Dana 35.I would do some more research and also find another shop.I don't know about your Jeep but i think the stock 8.25 has 3.55 gears in there.
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post #11 of 61 Old 01-28-2011, 08:31 PM
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Wow thats some bs right there what a pain lol.

[]IIIII[]
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post #12 of 61 Old 01-28-2011, 10:34 PM
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is there anyway you could put the abs on the chry? if so the chry would be worth it, especially sense you already have it. just a thought i dont know much about the abs

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post #13 of 61 Old 01-28-2011, 11:29 PM
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Jeep abs is crap, just get the matching front axle for the 8.25's gears and consider it a great upgrade from the crap 35.

'97 zj 5.2, some stuff, some other suff, and some things that even work sometimes.

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post #14 of 61 Old 01-29-2011, 01:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dbiked View Post
is there anyway you could put the abs on the chry? if so the chry would be worth it, especially sense you already have it. just a thought i dont know much about the abs
Its far to much work to add, and it's a pretty bad ABS system anyway. You're better off in the long run going with the stronger C8.25 and no ABS.
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post #15 of 61 Old 01-29-2011, 01:20 AM
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I am in agreement... keep the 8.25"s whichever is in better condition use, the other one toss the case and keep the shafts and gears as spares...

then either re-gear the front, or go back to the JY where you got the 8.25 and get the front out of it. (cheaper)

forget the ABS, just as long as you can get the light turned off and the code cleared so that it can be registered...

mine has been my DD for the past 4 years and was my dad's before that, it has never needed ABS in over 170k miles.
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