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Got my D44!

541 Views 14 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  INFAMOUSBUTCHER
After some failed junkyard attempts I turned to JU and found a semi-local 44 that came out of an 87 or 88 xj. I picked it up for $300 about a week ago. It was a little more than I was hoping for but, thats the going rate for these so I can't complain.

Pro's: Everything is solid, its complete (minus drums) and all the brake lines on the axle, including e-brake cables are intact.

Con's: It sat for a while so its got some rust on the Ring gear (as shown in the pic) as well as the inside of the cover. At some point a dime size hole got popped into the cover, and I'm a cheap bastard so im just gonna weld it up instead of buying a new one. Also, no drums, but that aint no biggy.

The bad news: Its gonna have to sit until I get my lift. Considering that I would need a new DS... there is no point in swapping it in until I HAVE to get a new shaft anyway. I figured out the ratio to be 3.54. My junk currently is running 3.55's. I know i can run this with no problem ( someone correct me if I'm wrong) but right now i'm trying to decide whether or not to put off lifting until i have money for new gears to do it all at the same time, or to lift and run it while saving for R&P's... I dunno yet... so many different variables.

anywho... heres the goods--


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The Guts--

The plan with it is to finish cleaning the 1/4" of stubborn grease off the the diff and the other axle tube. When I get my cutting torch (sometime next month) the shock mounts are getting torched, cut, and relocated so they wont droop below the axle tube. Lastly, during or ASAP after my lift im stuffin in either 4.88's or 5.13's. I need to see how low the D30 will go, and still need to work out a few more calculations to figure out what i want. Thats the plan so far, thanks again for allowing me to share my excitement. NOW I JUST NEED SOME $$!



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I have one of the heavy duty covers sitting out in the garage if ou want it just pay shipping
You sir, are awesome. I'll take it. PM me and let me know how you wanna take care of this.

lowest gear for a d30 is 4.88
I say run it the way it is. I have the exact same gear ratio deal with my recently added D44. Runs great, I'm running 31s and only slows slightly on long hills.

4.88's eh? Thanks for the heads up on that butcher, spose that makes that decision easier. I was leaning that way anyhow.

I may run it like it is, but we will see. The more I think about it the more I'm prolly gonna wait (till after i lift) to the point where I have enough money for do gears and lock it at the same time. That would save me some cash down the road. ARB or Detroit, lemme hear those of you with experience with either. I've got lots of info and opinions on both... but its always nice to hear new feedback.

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weld the rear, lockright the front, dont dump any more $$ then that into them . or spool the rear, even if you live in the snow you atleast always know the way your vehicle is gonna be handling becuase its not locking and unlocking back and forth. but if you have a disco 30 weld it up then buy,build yer own manual vac switch. dont use it unless you know you need it. wheel and save $$$ for future better upgrades

but thats just the butchers opinion
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He is better off waiting to buy gears and lockers at the same time, remember, not everybody wants to be towed off the trail
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which is what will happen if he dumps money into a turd
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The goal isn't to polish a turd... thats for sure.

BUT...realistically, I am trying to build this thing into something that is respectable with the small budget I have. I'm 21, married, going to school, working, saving to buy a house, and trying to keep the wife from hating the XJ.

That said, I have a monthly budget that will allow this pig to fly with 35's in a few months. If i had the cash, i would just do 60's and 38's... But i dont. So im stuck with my 44 and the D30 for a few years. I have been giving the 30 a lot of thought lately and it all comes down to the fact of going full width OR forking out some $$$ for a decent axle. Both of which arent options for me at this point.

On to the locker issue which spawned this... I respect your opinion butcher, and I see your point. I passed on these options for the following reasons:

1. While not a DD, it is my wife's ride when it snows. nuff said.

2. I hit the snow a lot. Thats why i dont wanna spool and thats why i am leaning toward the less relaible ARB option as opposed to a detroit.

3. Rather not lock the front. I feel like that would be throwing money into the 30. Hopefully by the time I am ready for a front locker i will be ready for a front axle upgrade.

Keep the opinions coming... its conversations like this that have helped me decide how i wanna build this thing.
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thats the beauty of welding the front if you have a manual vac disco switch, its just like an arb. and all im saying about the rear spool is that imo your wife (once you teach her how to drive a locked 4x4 in the snow) would be safer than say a detroit or lock right or any other auto locker in the snow becuase you cant always tell when its gonna lock and unlock so the vehicles handling is more eradtic. with a spool you know exactley how the vehicle is going to react, but an arb would be your best choice. i just wouldnt spend the money on the 44. and unless you stay at 35s you aint ever gonna make that 30 , with any amount of money, a decent axle.

theres some more opinion for ya
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That is a terrific idea bout welding the front and having the manual vac disco switch. Problem is I have a non-vac disco front axle. So that wont work for me.

Also, i bought the 44 so i could spend money on it. I know I know.. 60's! 60's! 60's! right? Honestly, I dont think i need 60's. At least not with 35's. And i feel that you could turn 37's with a properly built 44. Would you break now and again? yes i'm sure you might. But thats another debate for another time. Many people, such as yourself, need as much beef as you can get. I feel that I CURRENTLY do not. If i "did this thing right" (i.e. 60/14bolt etc) it would be stock for 3 years while i saved money and then it would be sitting in the garage for another 2. Not exactly what i'm after.

As for axle upgrade, i was referring to an axle swap... not upgrading the 30.

Your opinion is always welcome... gives me somethin to chew on.
you should of said that earlier i would have shut up

and anything will break no matter how big it is, its just a matter of when and where. and on the 30 i thought your previous statement meant spend $$ on making it better.

and no not 60s 60s 60s, i doubt i will ever buy a front d60 axle unless i score a deal off somone that doesnt know how much its worth becuase 1k$ is retarded to pay for a stock axle, hence going rockwells for me lol. i see the debate on rockwells not being streetable but for the price of buying and building a d60 id buy a comuter car for the $$ i saved on the axles lol. but thats enough of that, dont wanna stray too far off topic.

but if youre gonna stay at 35s and be nice to the skinny pedal , just carry spare shafts for the 30. or buy these
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