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post #1 of (permalink) Old 12-22-2001, 07:24 PM
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Decision Time.. Need honest axle advice

My M20 axle is in need of some serious help. In time, I would like to upgrade to a stronger overall axle, but right now finances are the hold up with making that conversion a reality. So, upgrading to one piece axle shafts and a rebuild of the M20 is the most cost effective route at this point. Thank you for the replies on my other post make me realize this.

Anyhow, a local offroad shop here (one that I trust) told me that most if not all the 1 piece axle upgrades for the M20 tend to cause major problems. I was told that they go through seals and bearings due to a number of reasons and that the headaches they cause aren't worth the trouble. He didn't try to sell me on anything more expensive and suprisingly gave me a better price on stock replacement parts over aftermarket stuff. Essentially, he told me that if my plan is to upgrade to a better axle in the future, to save money and just rebuild what it has now.

So, I need your collective advice on this. Should I just rebuild with stock parts and save money for the future upgrade? or Rebuild and beef up the M20 with 1 piece axles? If the consensus is to put in the one piece axles, please give me your opinions on the best kits to go with and any troubles that I might run into. If anyone has any links that might help with the rebuild, I'd appreciate that also.

Thanks in advance

BentMetal

83CJ7 definitely broken this time
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 12-22-2001, 07:33 PM
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Re: Decision Time.. Need honest axle advice

NO, the one piece upgrades for a 20 do not go through seals and bearings, who is this guy you talked to? The one piece conversions are no more prone to eating seals and bearings than the 2 piece design, that is plain BS. The only conversion that has trouble with seals is the 20 full floater, and that is only if the tubes are bent (even a slight bend will cause seal problems with this setup). So...forget what that guy told you, if you plan on keeping the 20 and doing any serious wheeling spring for a 2 peice axle setup. I've been running an early set of Mosers for nearly 10 years, had to replace the seals once, haven't replaced a bearing yet.

Brad
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 12-22-2001, 07:43 PM
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Re: Decision Time.. Need honest axle advice

Brad is right, nothing wrong with the 1 piece axles. That guy sounds like he doesn't know what he's talking about.

I don't know where you are or what gear ratio you have, but look around for a Scout II rear axle. You could pick it up cheaper, and with new spring perches welded on, it'd be a direct swap and eliminate the problems. Then you can upgrade later if you want to.

Up here the axles are cheap, like $75, but in other parts of the country they're harder to come by.

JEEPN
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 12-22-2001, 08:08 PM
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Re: Decision Time.. Need honest axle advice

elusive had the one piece axle shafts in his 20 and was pushing some pretty good horsepower through it, and we all know elusive can beat up a Jeep. I don't remember him saying anything bad about his setup.

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post #5 of (permalink) Old 12-22-2001, 08:49 PM
 
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Re: Decision Time.. Need honest axle advice

Been there, done that. The guy's pulling your chain. Either that, or his shop can't install them correctly. Agree with Brad.

Here's the poop:

If the housing is bent, they will eat seals.
If the axle is not installed correctly it MAY eat seals (it's pretty damned simple to get it right).
If the seal is not correctly installed it will leak/get eaten (it's pretty damned simple to get it right, but it took me 2 tries on my passenger side).

Other caveats:
If you are going to wheel this thing, PLEASE do yourself a favor and have the tubes welded to the pig. 4 1" long stitch welds at the compass points will do and it will keep you from spinning the tubes. Do this while you have the axle apart for rebuild. I didn't do it and it came back to bite me in the a$$.



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post #6 of (permalink) Old 12-22-2001, 09:52 PM
 
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Re: Decision Time.. Need honest axle advice

also do yourself a favor and get an axle truss the m20 has some pretty thin wall tubes and that is why the bend easier than most other axles

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post #7 of (permalink) Old 12-23-2001, 09:26 AM
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Re: Decision Time.. Need honest axle advice

Thanks for the replies. You all confirmed what I thought. As much as I like the guy at the shop and trust him as a fellow Jeeper, I didn't want to believe him on the one piece issue. I'll order the Moser's today and get a rebuild kit for the trac-loc (as much as I want to get a detroit, it's cheaper for the rebuild).

I'll also go ahead and stitch weld the tubes while it's out and possibly even gusset the tubes while I'm doing all of this. Believe me, if there was any way to go about a cheap swap with a scout 44, I'd do that because of the future build I want to do. Problem is, waggies and scout's are hard as hell to come by here in Las Vegas for whatever reason. Dana 44, Dana 60 and 14 bolts are plentiful, but the cost to have them all cut down and resplined is prohibitive right now.

Thanks again guys, I truly appreciate the info you share. You probably just saved me a huge headache, time and money.



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post #8 of (permalink) Old 12-23-2001, 09:40 AM
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Re: Decision Time.. Need honest axle advice

Once you truss it and add the 1 piece axles, it'll be fine. Do a search on trussing, I've posted a few pics of a trussed M20 that's real cheap and as strong as you can get.

JEEPN
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post #9 of (permalink) Old 12-23-2001, 09:45 AM
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Re: Decision Time.. Need honest axle advice

You have the typical SW Jeeper problem, suitable swap axles are impossible to find. I always read about guys suggesting this EASY swap of a Scout or Wag axle, yeah, easy if you can find any. Any of them that exist in the four corners area are immediatly bought by that crook Harold Off, and sold for unreal and criminally insane prices!

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post #10 of (permalink) Old 12-23-2001, 09:55 AM
 
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Re: Decision Time.. Need honest axle advice

Hey Bent,
The guys over at Maximum Off Road are very competent fabricators and mechanics. Greg (co owner and chief mechanic), is a very professional mechanic and fabricator. They were experimenting with some very effective coil suspensions, when I was there, and they test their work very hard, on their trail runs. Even if Greg, were to not agree with a customer on axle choice or modification as his 1st choice, I would certainly trust him with my rig, to perform the work at the highest level of quality. He is a very impressive mechanic, I would highly recommend him, for any future shop work.

I feel your pain, in regaurds to the slim pickjens at the salvage yards there in Vegas. I think they send all of there junk to LA, cause I couldnt find anything there.
I looked high and low for a Ford truck NP435, and found 1 for $750, and the attitude was take or leave it,(I left it). When I got to Sacramento, Ca, I needed another NP435 for a repair. I spent about an hour on the phone to local yards in rancho Cordova and surrounding areas, and found 6 of them priced below $250 with warranties. The yards were actually calling me back to see when I would be comming down to pick upo the tranny, ie:"Is that price to high?","Come on down Ill knock off a $100, I got em piled up in the yard". I finaly settled on one without warranty for $100.
Give Greg a call if you need some help, tell him I sent ya, he will take good care of you.

Jeff
89 YJ
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