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post #1 of 16 Old 04-03-2019, 11:34 AM Thread Starter
JayBourbon
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Bent upper "C" Dana 30 01 XJ

Sup guys, new here, and would love some help on this..
Just picked up my first XJ, 2001 4.0 and have been pretty excited about it until I realized that what I thought was a bad ball joint is indeed a bent upper "C"

So I am sure all your advice will be to swap it or gut it and get a new case but I want to try to bend it back and weld some gussets, or a truss to strengthen it before I just scrap the housing.

Any advice on this is greatly appreciated.

These housings are made of cast steel correct?

Here's a picture of the cover to help identify exact axle.
The last pic of the "C' is the drivers side it will be facing right in the pictures. The other "C" is there for comparison. The fender well shows the amount of toe out the the bent "C" is giving the wheel.
I think it's pretty clear that you can see the upper "C" is bent in the last picture. I know heating this up will cause it to weaken so my thought was to pull the ball joints, and whack the thing with a sledge hammer until the distance between the upper C and lower C matches the passenger side. If it cracks I get a new axle, but at least I tried. If it bends back I can weld the gusstes and it should be ok I am guessing. Thoughts? I did hear a few guys using a 20 ton bottle jack, or a porta power to somehow bend it back with success but it wasn't specific.

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Last edited by JayBourbon; 04-03-2019 at 11:51 AM.
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post #2 of 16 Old 04-03-2019, 12:52 PM
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Subbed. I’ve never heard of successfully unbending an axle DIY. Would even be sketchy of a shop doing it.

My vote is pull a Hp D30 from a junkyard. $~200 around here. JCR gussets and have a proper welder burn them in. New ball joints and call it a day.


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post #3 of 16 Old 04-03-2019, 02:14 PM Thread Starter
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Appreciate the response.. Yeah that would be the practical fix for sure. I am going to try a 20 ton bottle jack and chain first before I scrap it. I'm pretty resourceful I will think of something. Hoping for some ideas here, but I will post progress photos when I get around to the job. Unless someone has a better, or more creative idea. I am open to suggestions. I actually came across 2 people who did this successfully and waiting to hear back from them on advice. I will share my findings here.
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post #4 of 16 Old 04-03-2019, 04:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JayBourbon View Post
Appreciate the response.. Yeah that would be the practical fix for sure. I am going to try a 20 ton bottle jack and chain first before I scrap it. I'm pretty resourceful I will think of something. Hoping for some ideas here, but I will post progress photos when I get around to the job. Unless someone has a better, or more creative idea. I am open to suggestions. I actually came across 2 people who did this successfully and waiting to hear back from them on advice. I will share my findings here.


I would find somewhere with a free alignment check or go to firestone and buy a lifetime alignment plan. Bring it in when your attempt is done and ensure the camber is in spec. If it’s slightly off there are angled ball joints, I wouldn’t recommend it over the proper fix. Otherwise you’re throwing away tires with money you could use for a new axle... I wouldn’t even waste the material and weld to gusset a scrappy axle as a JY would be a direct bolt in for your case.


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post #5 of 16 Old 04-04-2019, 08:04 PM
rjbruzan
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I personally would strip the offending end, then heat it red hot where you want to straighten it at. It will bend back quite easily. let it cool slowly. As said before its cast steel. it was welded so heating and bending isnt going to hurt it. If you left the knuckle on level the axle tube and make the bearing mounting flange 90 degrees to the tube.
Another option might be to face off a portion of the knuckles bearing mounting surface to make up for the bend.

Ron

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post #6 of 16 Old 04-04-2019, 08:35 PM
CJ7-Tim
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The fender does not show anything in regards to the toe, or anything else. You need to have data from physical measurements, or an alignment shop printout before you proclaim anything is bent.

While I suppose it is possible to bend the C back into shape, how are you going to figure out when to say when ? If measuring determines that something is bent, the logical solution is a good used axle assembly, no unbending, re-measuring, or gussets required.

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post #7 of 16 Old 04-11-2019, 05:55 AM
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I agree with above you would be farther ahead saving time and tires finding a different hp30. I’m in NW Ohio and they pop up free all the time. I’ve got two siting around with alloy shafts even and they don’t sell even for 100$ just because how many are out there around here. Every third Xj/yj is a rot box with good drivetrain.
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post #8 of 16 Old 04-11-2019, 08:01 PM Thread Starter
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Appreciate the responses guys... Especially the advice on heating it up and bending it back.. I have been giving much thought to the solution while combing the local listings for another Dana 30, and one came up finally for $95 bux. I figure that this would be the most practical solution for now seeing as i need to get a torch set, and their not cheap out here.. I was gonna pick up on eof those Harbor Freight setups but I hear that the local gas companies wont fill them so their not worth it. Used oxy acetylene torch setups are 400+ everywhere, so the best bet was just to pick up the new Dana for now.. So this one was super clean, and I have been looking day and night for one because anything jeep that is a deal in the Chicago land area goes up and is bought in the first few minutes. Cheapest Dana 30 I've seen in the last few weeks was 200$ without axle shafts and it was rusted to ****. I got mine for $95 with axle shafts new ball joints, new ujoints, and the guy had the diff cover off to show how clean it was. Thing is super clean no rust. This was a LP dana 30 out of a 98 WJ so I am hoping it will be a direct bolt on. He said it had 355 gears before I asked which is stock in my 01 xj but I need to figure out how to double check the gears..

I will tackle the bent upper C on this axle when I get my torch setup and repost the findings.. Thank you once again for all your help, and I will see yas soon here when I tear into this jeep for the suspension lift, or if I come across other issues which I am sure I will.

If you can tell me how to identify the gear ratio before I go that would be great .. Here's the pics of the new axle
Attached Thumbnails
Screenshot_20190411-201631_Facebook.jpg   Screenshot_20190411-201654_Facebook.jpg   Screenshot_20190411-201651_Facebook.jpg   Screenshot_20190411-201639_Facebook.jpg   Screenshot_20190411-201633_Facebook.jpg  

Screenshot_20190411-201701_Facebook.jpg   Screenshot_20190411-201708_Facebook.jpg  

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post #9 of 16 Old 04-12-2019, 06:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JayBourbon View Post
This was a LP dana 30 out of a 98 WJ so I am hoping it will be a direct bolt on.
Are you positive a 1998 WJ Grand Cherokee is the donor ? If so, does not/will not fit.

It does however look like an XJ Cherokee, or ZJ Grand Cherokee axle to me.


The ring gear is stamped 39/11, do the math.

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post #10 of 16 Old 04-12-2019, 06:45 AM Thread Starter
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Look buddy.. If your not gonna be part of the solution don't respond.. I let your first response go when you said the axle don't look bent and the picture clearly shows the upper C bent with the wheel facing in, and even the gap between the ball joint extended. Doesn't take a genius to see its bent. How about you lighten up and explain to someone new to jeeps or take a hike and let people who are here to help chime in. Stop pissin on my thread and second guessin me, and xplain why a 98 WJ axle won't fit. He had the donor vehicle stripped right next to all the parts. Thanks for your cooperation.
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post #11 of 16 Old 04-12-2019, 09:11 AM
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Tim is telling you it is right in front of your eyes. 39 (ring gear count) divided by 11 (pinion count) gives 3.55 gear ratio.
Tim is one of the most knowledgeable guys on this forum. Please dont let his forward speaking offend you. A WJ axle is wider by about 3". But there is no 98 WJ. A 98 would be a ZJ. Both are Grands but different series.
ZJs, XJs and TJs fronts will all work but there are differences also.
Tim was not "pissin" on your thread he was giving well thought out info from his many years of repairing skills. Each of us has different thoughts and methods like my comment on heating and bending. Working at a dealership he has different methods which must be followed. Discerning which method to use and what advice to take is all part "Internet experience".
In the end this is a FAMILY style Forum so getting along is the name of the game.
Good to see you got a decent axle now get it back together and start driving your Jeep.

Ron
Also if you put your location in the info bar there may have been someone who could have helped with the heat and bending.

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post #12 of 16 Old 04-12-2019, 09:43 AM
CJ7-Tim
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A WJ axle would not fit because the rim bolt pattern is different, the brakes are larger so 15" rims won't fit, and the axle is much wider.

“When the people find that they can vote themselves money, that will herald the end of the Republic.”

- Benjamin Franklin

“The powers delegated by the proposed Constitution to the federal government are few and defined. Those which are to remain
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post #13 of 16 Old 04-12-2019, 10:32 AM Thread Starter
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Ok guys sorry about the heated reply. I am just learning here and going with the punches as they come so please bare with me. This is new territory for me. I appreciate the well explained response, and explaining the method to divide the gears to get the exact ratio. So I messaged the guy who sold me the axle and he said "WJ" was a typo it is actually a 98 ZJ, and this axle did in fact come from his 98 ZJ.
I am hoping that this will work but I don't want to go into swapping this thing blind before knowing for sure that the axle I have now will indeed work.
There was no tag on the diff cover, and the guy couldn't find the bolts in his mess. I needed to get back to work so I just left without them and the tag.
I did a quick look over on the tubes and didn't see any numbers..
Upon visual inspection it looks identical.
from the outside center of the axle tube measured across to the other side center axle tube is roughly 43 and 1/2" which matches the XJ length.
the measurement of the C from top to bottom matches as well about 9" top of the C to the bottom on both axles.
How would I go about identifying this axle to confirm it will work besides measuring the tube length?
Thank you again for all and any help. Your time is greatly appreciated.
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post #14 of 16 Old 04-12-2019, 06:54 PM
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Bent upper "C" Dana 30 01 XJ

IIRC the ZJ axle is the same specs for mounting as the xj, but is only offered in the low pinion, where as the 84-99 came with a HP in the XJ and the 2000-2001 came with a LP in the XJ. The difference in pinion is more into play with higher lifted vehicles and the driveshaft angles and the strength, etc in gears. To get it on the road and reliable should not be a big difference, rather preference.

As noted, the ring gear can easily be counted then divided over the pinion to ensure a 3.55 ratio. I put an etch on the edge of each gear and counted while rotating the gear.

If you already have the axle around I say go for it and fit it in. Quicker than waiting for replies IMO.

New gear oil, seal it all up, get some equivalent bolts, then run it to a alignment store for a check and see that the camber specs are proper.


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post #15 of 16 Old 04-12-2019, 11:44 PM Thread Starter
JayBourbon
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Right on man. I didn't want to tear into this thing and have my driveway blocked by it if it didn't work for some reason. Took me 2 weeks to find this one and I got lucky at that. Seems like it should work as long as this thing was really from a 98 ZJ. Everything measures up correctly so far. Fingers crossed. I was hoping to figure out how to properly identify the axle somehow before I started. I am reading there should be numbers on the tubes but I didn't see any. Gonna bang this out next week when the weather gets better. Where you guys go for an alignment? Seeing these guys on youtube just putting a piece of steel across the bottom of the wheel and hooking a take measure on one side and running it across the other to measure distances. Might try that first. Haven't been to a mechanic in 20 years and don't plan on it any time soon.
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