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  #1  
Old 04-27-2012, 09:21 AM
AKjeeper AKjeeper is offline
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bad decision time......maybe

So I welded up the rear end on my 86 waggy. This is my trail toy and occasional cruiser around town. I REALLY want a front locker but this is a budget build so Im really thinking about putting in some manual hubs and welding up the front axle. I KNOW the drawbacks of steering on the trail, I figure if the steering is to hard I can always unlock a hub on the trail. I see so many people running lock rights and detroits up front, so why couldnt I weld it and get much better off-road capability?. I do carry extra shafts, I do have a ford dana 44 to get swapped in SOA next year IF I hate the welded front. Whos done it?
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  #2  
Old 04-27-2012, 09:46 AM
AKjeeper AKjeeper is offline
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Ive talked to alot of guys who run welded front and they say in the dirt it aint that bad to steer, especially in the mud. I don't run rocks, its Alaska and we have alot of mud, ruts, roots, slimy hill climbs. The guys with lockers or welded up front do so much better with the front locked and say it isnt that bad, only occasionally they gotta make a 3 point turn or unlock a hub on a tight trail, so im really considering this. I only run 33's so If Im not an idiot I see the front axle holding up just fine.

So Question, IF I convert to manual hubs, what application do I need? Will GM dana 44 hubs work or should I just ask for another year Jeep dana 44 hub, if so which year should I ask for so I make sure I get the right hubs.?
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  #3  
Old 04-27-2012, 10:30 AM
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blazer3664 blazer3664 is offline
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I'd say go for it.
I think Chevy hubs will work, but not 100% sure. A little checkin should turn up what years ours had manual hubs though.

Worst case, you really hate it and know to do something different when you swap axles to go SOA.

Probably gona weld my D60 for a while until I can afford an OX locker for it.

Jim
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Old 04-27-2012, 10:42 AM
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MonsterZ MonsterZ is offline
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I am just about positive that chevy hubs will work, but if you can find yourself hubs for a J20 that would also work. I think you are going to find that you are gonna love having no BS 4 wheel drive. Whether or not you decide to eventually go to a full time locker up front is a different story, but I do recommend that if you decide to stay welded up front that you eventually pony up for an actual spool. They tend to hold up better than welded gears. Enjoy, and the next time I can get down to Anchorage I will be sure to shoot you a message. Looking forward to seeing it man, good luck!!
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  #5  
Old 04-27-2012, 11:08 AM
AKjeeper AKjeeper is offline
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I think the worst case scenario is that I don't like the steering, but Im pretty sure on a nasty trail in the middle of no where I'll rather have TRUE 4wd than easy finger tip steering for "convenience". And yes, If I weld it and hate it then atleast I can say from experience that I didnt like it. I only need this axle to survive one summer anyway.
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  #6  
Old 04-27-2012, 11:51 AM
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Stuka Stuka is offline
 
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So long as you never need to drive in the snow, go for it.

Although I don't see how a welded front would do better on a hill climb than a locker. As they are both acomplishing the same task. Just one unlocks when you let off the gas. A spool is not going to give you more traction than a detroit. A detroit locks the axle shafts together whenever you apply throttle.
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  #7  
Old 04-27-2012, 02:24 PM
AKjeeper AKjeeper is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stuka
So long as you never need to drive in the snow, go for it.

Although I don't see how a welded front would do better on a hill climb than a locker. As they are both acomplishing the same task. Just one unlocks when you let off the gas. A spool is not going to give you more traction than a detroit. A detroit locks the axle shafts together whenever you apply throttle.


The whole point is that I can't afford a locker.
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  #8  
Old 04-27-2012, 04:44 PM
AKjeeper AKjeeper is offline
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Then again something tells me that If I can't get there with nice 33's, good articulation and a locked rear then I shouldn't be going there!
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  #9  
Old 04-27-2012, 05:42 PM
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Stuka Stuka is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AKjeeper
The whole point is that I can't afford a locker.

Oh I know. And I just realized I misread your second post. I thought it said a welded front did better than a locked front. But you said a welded/locked did better than an open. So, disregard my previous comment
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1981 J10 AMC 258 with TFI and Weber 32/36 DGEV Carb with a BJ's Aluminum Radiator, T176, NP208, D44/M23 with 4.56 gears and Detroit Locker, 6" lift, 33x12.50 TSL's, BJ's Offroad Rear Bumper.

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Last edited by Stuka : 04-27-2012 at 05:45 PM.
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  #10  
Old 04-27-2012, 06:11 PM
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REDONE REDONE is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AKjeeper
Then again something tells me that If I can't get there with nice 33's, good articulation and a locked rear then I shouldn't be going there!

I follow your logic, as I'm the kind of guy that get's stuck in 2x before going 4x, and if I'm in 4lo, I'm either pulling a stump, bucking hay, or muttering profanities at the thought paying for recovery!

Even so, I say weld it up! If you don't like it, every single other traction option you'd replace it with will replace the carrier and welded spiders anyways. If you decide to try a lunchbox (which, in the front I don't think you'd find a difference between a locker and a lincoln locker) a bare D44 carrier can be had out of hundreds of cars at the pull-a-part for less than I spend on beer in a week.
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  #11  
Old 04-27-2012, 06:33 PM
AKjeeper AKjeeper is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by REDONE
I follow your logic, as I'm the kind of guy that get's stuck in 2x before going 4x, and if I'm in 4lo, I'm either pulling a stump, bucking hay, or muttering profanities at the thought paying for recovery!

Even so, I say weld it up! If you don't like it, every single other traction option you'd replace it with will replace the carrier and welded spiders anyways. If you decide to try a lunchbox (which, in the front I don't think you'd find a difference between a locker and a lincoln locker) a bare D44 carrier can be had out of hundreds of cars at the pull-a-part for less than I spend on beer in a week.

Yeah, well Ive got a dana 44 out of a 79 F250 just ready to be thrown in for my SOA BUT im afraid to start that project now as spring/summer is upon us and I dont want to miss a weekend to get out in the jeep. Im gonna save the SOA/Full width swap for next winter. Right now I just wanna get the heck out and enjoy the Jeep and the wilderness with my Sons. Ill just weld the S.O.B up and see how it goes, if the drawbacks outweigh the benefits then I will know for the future and Ill save up for a selectable front locker. I just cant see a welded front being BAD in a nasty deep mudhole.................
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  #12  
Old 04-29-2012, 02:33 PM
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CutterN55 CutterN55 is offline
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Go with good hubs if you lock the front. My buddy welded the open 44's I gave him and first trip out on 33's he grenaded the D/S lock-out not two minutes off the trailer. Then the other the next week.

I'd go with a mini-spool front to try it out. It can always be removed and you can add a luchbox or something else later. You'd also be able to sell what parts you have if you don't like it.

You will probably find that you will want hyrdo-assist once you are fully locked or you are going to get very strong.

I think if you run the locked rear for a while and save your pennies, you'll be happier with a lunchbox up front, that way you can still turn the tires when you let off the throttle.

I have not locked my front yet, though I want to. The reason I haven't welded mine is that I wheeled an XJ with mini-spools in both ends and decided that's not the direction I wanted to go. I want a selectable front.
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  #13  
Old 04-29-2012, 04:22 PM
fsjparts fsjparts is offline
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Its hell on your steering box and pumps....went through 3 on a blazer I had welded up front
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  #14  
Old 04-29-2012, 05:12 PM
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CutterN55 CutterN55 is offline
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^^^^
very good point.
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  #15  
Old 04-29-2012, 05:44 PM
AKjeeper AKjeeper is offline
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well Great Googley MoogleyGreat Googley MoogleyGreat Googley MoogleyGreat Googley Moogley it..............I think now Ill just go with my welded rear and leave the front alone untill I save for a selectable. I dont want to be out in the middle of nowhere and have something break on me like a rag joint, a tie rod, steering box etc etc, I guess I should consider that more than my U-joints will be under way more stress.
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  #16  
Old 04-29-2012, 08:05 PM
fsjparts fsjparts is offline
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Talking

Quote:
Originally Posted by AKjeeper
well Great Googley MoogleyGreat Googley MoogleyGreat Googley MoogleyGreat Googley Moogley it..............I think now Ill just go with my welded rear and leave the front alone untill I save for a selectable. I dont want to be out in the middle of nowhere and have something break on me like a rag joint, a tie rod, steering box etc etc, I guess I should consider that more than my U-joints will be under way more stress.



Good decision .....I ended up trading the blazer i got so tired of front end problems......but did trade it for a j4000 at least
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  #17  
Old 04-29-2012, 08:32 PM
AKjeeper AKjeeper is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fsjparts
Good decision .....I ended up trading the blazer i got so tired of front end problems......but did trade it for a j4000 at least

Dang, I hate getting old and "reasonable". Oh the days of going against everything logical and doing it anyway...........................
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  #18  
Old 04-29-2012, 08:57 PM
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Riby Riby is offline
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Fozzy locker

Not to go against peoples opinions, but I've been running a welded front end for almost 2 years. Yes, the steerings a little tight sometimes, but if you have a quality power steering pump and gearbox, you shouldn't have problems with either. I love knowing that I have true 4wd when i shift into low. I'm running what some people call fozzy lockers. Its welded spider gears, but don differently. Google it and you'll see what i did. I've got 5.13s, 35" KM2s, and have no problem using the throttle when needed. I've only grenaded one stock shaft so far.
Just my $.02
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