Help: Questions on replacing Rubicon D44 rear axle - JeepForum.com
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post #1 of 15 Old 08-11-2020, 04:37 PM Thread Starter
NFJ79
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Help: Questions on replacing Rubicon D44 rear axle

Hello everyone,

I'm new here and i recently picked up a 03 Rubicon with 148k miles. The rear axle housing is shot because the PO didn't know it ran out of fluid. So now I'm looking for a replacement axle. Looks like it'll be around $3500-$5k for a new replacement axle (G2/Currie/Carbon/ECGS) with 4.10 and Eaton ELocker, and it'll take about 90 days for it to ship. I really don't want to wait that long to get this jeep running.

The jeep currently has 33's on it and I don't plan to go bigger tire size. It'll be my daily and would like to do moderate trails in Colorado. I can find used Rubicon TJ D44 axle for about $2300 shipped. I've read the the LSD in the factory locker is the weak point in the rear. Can they handle 33's with out grenading?

Any help would be appreciated. Glad to find a TJ forum with a wealth of information.

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post #2 of 15 Old 08-11-2020, 04:46 PM
bobjp
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Why do you think the entire housing is shot? If it ran low on oil, you can just replace the bearings. If the ring and pinion are damaged they can be replaced too. Both would require a gear setup.

The axle will handle 33's fine.
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post #3 of 15 Old 08-11-2020, 04:47 PM
UTWeezul
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Can the old axle just be rebuilt or did it ruin the housing?

36" TSL/SX
Poison Spyder 3" Highlines and Comp Cut corners
HP30 and 8.8 w/ lockers
103" Wheelbase
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post #4 of 15 Old 08-11-2020, 06:31 PM Thread Starter
NFJ79
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Pinon had a lot of play and destroyed the housing.

I know the D44 can handle the 33's, but can the stock locker with LSD take it?
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post #5 of 15 Old 08-11-2020, 07:02 PM
bobjp
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It doesn't look unusable to me.

How deep is the groove into the casting? How much of the bearing cup was ground off?
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post #6 of 15 Old 08-11-2020, 09:01 PM
greenmachine99
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If that groove isn’t too deep and it didn’t spin the bearing race in the housing I’d rebuild what you’ve got.
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post #7 of 15 Old 08-12-2020, 06:05 AM
Ironhead
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if the axle housing is shot, keep your eyes on the used parts market, $2300 for a rear d44 is ludicrous. they can be found ~1k.


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post #8 of 15 Old 08-12-2020, 07:17 AM
bobjp
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For a Rubicon 44 with a functioning locker? I've seen them go for less than $2300 too, but the problem is finding them.

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post #9 of 15 Old 08-12-2020, 08:54 AM
2jhanna
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Do you really want to stay with 4.10 gears if you go to 33" tires ?

Take a look at daveysjeeps.com. Here a LJ, D44, disk brakes, $1000. If you're going to regear anyway, plus add a locker of your choice.

You could also give them a call. They know jeeps, and are always parting them out. May even have a Rubi.
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post #10 of 15 Old 08-12-2020, 09:28 AM
bobjp
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I would go with that option and install an ARB over sourcing a functioning Rubicon axle...unless you can really find a cheap one.

But I still think the original axle is good.
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post #11 of 15 Old 08-13-2020, 08:15 AM
Mousejockey
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If the housing will hold the races, full contact to the top of the races, then Id run it

Also agree with the ARB over Rubi axle, both cost and strength. My Rubi rear blew up on me when I broke an axle, replaced the innards with a Grizzly
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post #12 of 15 Old 08-14-2020, 11:31 AM Thread Starter
NFJ79
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Here an update:

I got a used Rubicon axle out of an 04 with 92k miles for $1725 shipped to my home. I ordered it on Weds afternoon, and got it delivered to my house the next day.

Cracked open the pumpkin and to my surprise I find a Eaton ELocker! I think I scored with this one. Got the axle installed lastnight. It's definetly a two person job, unlike my old XJ rear leafspring. More parts to remove lol. But we got it in.

Turns out the shocks are shot, and so are the Zone LCA poly bushings. I ordered Bilstein 5100's and Zone bushing kit for the LCA. Also ordered Eaton ELocker wiring harness. I'll have the jeep running soon.

Thank you all of the help!
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post #13 of 15 Old 08-14-2020, 11:47 AM
2jhanna
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Does the gearing match your front axle ?

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jhanna
denton county, tx
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post #14 of 15 Old 08-14-2020, 01:16 PM Thread Starter
NFJ79
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobjp View Post
Why do you think the entire housing is shot? If it ran low on oil, you can just replace the bearings. If the ring and pinion are damaged they can be replaced too. Both would require a gear setup.

The axle will handle 33's fine.
Quote:
Originally Posted by UTWeezul View Post
Can the old axle just be rebuilt or did it ruin the housing?
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2jhanna View Post
Does the gearing match your front axle ?

yes sir, 4.10s
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post #15 of 15 Old 08-14-2020, 02:58 PM
bobjp
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You could easily get $500+ out of the old housing if you include shafts.

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