WJ Axle Swap - North American Grand Cherokee Association
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Old 03-03-2012, 01:04 PM   #1
meangreen75457
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Default WJ Axle Swap

So, im looking to get rid of my stock D35 sometime soon and was looking at either going with a 8.8, or a D60. I plan on wheelin quite a big and want my rear to be able to stand up to whatever I ask of it. So what axles are the best/easiest to swap into the WJ and what problems can I expect to run into along the way? Any help is greatly appreciated.
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Old 03-03-2012, 04:28 PM   #2
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Either axle will be the same amount of fabrication, the 8.8 is good up to 37 inch tires unless you are a complete throttle junkie, with the 60 being good for 42 inch tires. And there is always the cheapest and easiest option of just throwing in the 44a from another WJ that is good for 35 inch tires.
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Old 03-03-2012, 06:03 PM   #3
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I dont want to go with a 44a because i eventually plan on putting a locker in it and would like to have more than one choice for that. The main axle that ive been looking at is the 8.8 but after looking around the forum I heard that it was too short for the GC's. Is there any truth to this? And you dont have to worry about the throttle junkie factor, im used to wheelin a 2.8l YJ.
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Old 03-03-2012, 11:29 PM   #4
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The Aussie is a great locker with a great warranty, many guys have ran it with good feedback, just truss the 44a and it is strong enough for your needs. As for the 8.8 width, nothing that spacers cannot take care of.
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Old 03-04-2012, 12:39 AM   #5
85IrocZ-28
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The 8.8 is good for ZJ guys, but not WJ's.

The WJ rear is different than the ZJ, and axle swaps will require a bit more work.

The WJ has a 5 on 5 bolt pattern. So unless you want to run different wheels front/rear, and carry two different spares, you need to stick with a 5 on 5 bolt pattern for your rear axle. Or you could swap both front and rear axles out to another set with matching bolt patterns, but that means you will need four new wheels as well.

Keep in mind that the WJ uses the rear ABS sensor to read the speed for the speedo. I have read that you can tap the front ABS line to generate the signal though.

I guess you could run an 8.8 though, and because you would need spacers anyways, you could get adapter spacers that go from the 5 on 4.5 to the 5 on 5 and still be able to run your current wheels and not have to carry two spares.

Your best option: D44 from a JK Rubi. It will have the 5 on 5 bolt pattern, and it is an iron 44 so you will have a ton of locker options. You will likely need to run spacers to keep the track width out where you want it though. It will require fab work. I would find a used axle, and get a WJ bracket kit and weld all the WJ brackets onto the jk rubi axle.
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Old 03-04-2012, 05:09 AM   #6
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You could pick up some 44a shafts and cut down a 30 spl 60 and add the 44a ends to it (bracket and bearing cup). I was gonna go that route initially, but decided to stay 8 lug and free float. Mainly because I use my jeep like a truck with heavy loads and pulling a trailer a lot. Most free floats will be 30 spline. A lot of the semi floats I've seen tend to be 35 spline. Beware of cargo van axles, not all, but many of those were 32 spline.
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Old 03-04-2012, 05:59 PM   #7
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I've actually heard really goo things about the JK axels. Though they are D30 front and D44 rear, theyre not the same as the old D30 and D44. The guy that does all of our axle work had very good things to say about them. The only thing that I think i would run into with JK axles would be the price and availability since there arent too many sitting around in junk yards. As far as different bolt patterns go i dont think i'd have a problem with running a spacers with 5 on 5 instead of 5 on 4.5. I have thought about doing a front and rear swap since im going to have to pull the axles to re-gear anyway. Just dont know if i have the cash for that right now.
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