Advice on upgrading or strengthening dana 35 - JeepForum.com
 
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post #1 of 8 Old 07-19-2010, 11:37 PM Thread Starter
smooth9883
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Advice on upgrading or strengthening dana 35



I was on the trail Saturday and wouldn't you know it I almost spent the night.

As we were about to head down from the top of the hill my wife asked if the wheel is supposed to be sticking out that far. I replied, "what are you talking about." By this time she is yelling stop, and I quickly rush to park the jeep. I jump out and walk around the car. What I find is my tire completely fallen off with the axle shaft attached to it. I have become another victom of the Dana 35 rear end.

Not to put all blame on the axle, I did break it trying to tow a buddy who's engine died. It made a loud pop like someone shooting a 45 off. I could feel it right away once I unlanched from my friend. I knew something was wrong.

So here is my questions, I have a 97 wrangler with 33's on a 3.5 rubicon lift. I have a detroit locker in the back with 4.56 (also another aid in breaking the axle). It looks like all of my rear end is completely in tack. The shaft broke midway down. The bearings on the side of the axle are mangled and the break pad doesn't look so good either.

This is what I'm considering, a ford 8.8 axle with a detroit locker modified for the TJ with 4.56 gears, a dana 44, or what I'm really thinking about is the cheaper option.

Chromoly shafts and new bearings. I'll then carry a spare with me incase something goes wrong. I'm just wondering if the $300 i'm going to spend on the chromoly shafts is really going to be worth it, or am I going to break down on the trail again?

My real concern is that I only gave the jeep enough power to keep the engine running and the shaft broke. I know there is an incredible amount of torque but if I'm ever in the situation where I need to pull someone out I don't want to worry about being broken down at the top of a mountain. By the way, it cost me $450 to get a tow 2 miles.

I am also thinking about staying with the 35 because I can then get a winch and do some other upgrades.

What does everyone think? Keep in mind I don't have a ton of money.







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post #2 of 8 Old 07-20-2010, 08:50 AM
Wheelin98TJ
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I think the S35 kit or the c-clip eliminator kit would both be good options for you.

Since your axle is already regeard, you are ahead there.

If you do the S35 kit, you could sell the old 27 spline Detroit locker that you currently have to help recoup some of the costs.

A S35 with a Detroit is about $700.

Or the c-clip eliminator kit is around $500-550.

I don't think the $300 chrome moly shafts are quite enough. I think you would be better off spending a little more on either of the options I mentioned above.
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post #3 of 8 Old 07-20-2010, 10:29 AM Thread Starter
smooth9883
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If I'm spending that much money for a new locker and kit I mine as well get an 8.8 or 44 right?
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post #4 of 8 Old 07-20-2010, 10:35 AM
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I know this dosent solve your problem but you had the tools to drive out id guess. What we have done is take are HiLift jack and two chains or straps to hold the axle/tire back in so you could drive or be towed back to camp. We have done this and I wish I had taken pictures because I was at one time in doubt but it worked. We drove back 6 miles like that no problem.

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post #5 of 8 Old 07-20-2010, 10:37 AM Thread Starter
smooth9883
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DavesPerf View Post
I know this dosent solve your problem but you had the tools to drive out id guess. What we have done is take are HiLift jack and two chains or straps to hold the axle/tire back in so you could drive or be towed back to camp. We have done this and I wish I had taken pictures because I was at one time in doubt but it worked. We drove back 6 miles like that no problem.

Dave
I wish I had done that. Would have saved me a bunch of money.
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post #6 of 8 Old 07-20-2010, 10:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smooth9883 View Post
If I'm spending that much money for a new locker and kit I mine as well get an 8.8 or 44 right?
Depends on how much work you can do yourself.

Ford 8.8 $150 to $250
Detroit $500
New 4.56 gears $200
TJ bracket kit $250
Install of locker and gears $250 to $350
Welding of brackets onto 8.8 $150 to $250

To me that looks like $1,500 on the low end and $1,800 on the high end to set up the 8.8.

I have seen some people do it for like $800, but they did they bulk of the labor themselves- i.e. weld the brackets and set the gears.



I wheeled a Super 35 on 35"s for a long time before going to a built 44. It saw some crazy Colorado and Moab trails and held up just fine. A lot of people say don't throw money at a S35, but if you aren't going bigger than 35"s, you should be fine. I would consider a D35 truss as well.


Or buy a used Rubi 44 axle for like $1000 to $1,200 and slowly build it up.

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post #7 of 8 Old 07-20-2010, 10:49 AM
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Rubicon take-off with a compressor for $1000 to $1200? That's a good deal around here.

I like the S35 idea.

If it's worth doing, then it's worth overdoing.

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post #8 of 8 Old 07-20-2010, 11:52 AM
Wheelin98TJ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smooth9883 View Post
If I'm spending that much money for a new locker and kit I mine as well get an 8.8 or 44 right?
Well you have to draw the line somewhere.

$700 for the S35 kit minus say $100 for your used Detroit locker puts you at $600 net.

You cannot come close to that price if you want a locked D44 or Ford 8.8 with 4.56 gears. Unless you find a great deal on a used axle.
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