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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am wanting to change my gear ratio in my axles of my 82 cj7. I have a dana 30 front end and a model 20 rear. I have 2.73 gears in it now and I am wanting to go to 3.54 or 3.73 gears. How much should I expect to pay someone to change these gears? I have a dana 30 and model 20 axle with 3.54's in it that I could take out, and I want to know an estimate of how much it would take to get it done if I use these used gears and how much it would take to buy new ones and get it done. Thanks

 
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i cant tell you how much its gonna cost, but if you are gonna spend some money you might really want to consider beefier axles

81 cj-7,360,SOA,35's,locked rear,fullcage
 
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How hard would it be to set up my own gears? I also have 2.73's and am going to 3.54's. I was just going to have a shop do it, but thats
a lot of money. Is there any special tools/techniques I need in order to do it myself?
Dan

 

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You will need a dial indicator,michrometer,torque wrench, and good set of basic tools. The Master Kit comes with detailed instructions. Attention has to overemphasized to follow the instructions to the letter as far as tollerances go. Its not rocket science, but it is very,very excacting, If for instance, your back lash is not within tollerance, for the 4th time around, the ring gear comes back out and reshim and do again, untill its right,period. There are some tricks to speeding up the process, but plan on throwing some tools on the 1st one. If someone you know has done them and can help you through the 1st one, thats a huge help, and you should always speak kindly of him in the presence of others afterwards. Because once you learn to change your own gears, axle or ratio swaps become a whole new option, becuase it doesnt cost you $500 in labor front and rear everytime you need,( its like the old give a man a fish,or teach a man to fish, proverb). I would say if you plan on keeping your Jeep or another for a long time, struggle through and learn(to fish) to do it yourself. If you really plan on doing your own install post a question on tips to ease process. Im sure youll get the info youll need to get through. But, Keep in mind a bad set up will quickly ruin your bearrings or worse.

Jeff
89 Wrangler
If at first you dont succeed, your replacement will try and try again.
 
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I usually put it this way. I was a mechanic and I don't set up my own gears! Spend the buck. Rear end setup is as much art as it is skill. Experience is the best thing when it comes to rears. you need dial indicators to install them which is usually not in your average joes tool box. For me it's just too much adjusting. Put it in, check clearences, pull it out. Put it back in pul it out put it in...Get the idea. Besides if the bearing preloads are off it will cost alot more in the long run. I'm not saying it can't be done, alot of people do. If you are skilled, VERY precise, good attention to detail, and most of all PATIENT. give it a try.

Al
My web page
 

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Jeff hit it right on....

I have now set up 4 diffs, and it is still a time consuming process. But, like Jeff said - I planned to stay around 4 wheeling for quite a while, so I would rather know how to fish than keep paying for them at the store /wwwthreads_images/icons/wink.gif

I also looked at it this way - I can set up 2 sets of gears and still be less than one set of gears and the price of an install... Not only that, I get the experience to boot...

We set up some 5.29's in a friend's Toyota diff, and the pinion bearing spun on the pinion. We were able to keep the gears, but needed a new setup kit. Sure, we had to spend another $90 for a setup & bearing kit, but $90 is still less than the $300 it would have cost us to have just one diff set up...

Oh yeah, I am not sure about a 30 and a 20 setup, but I know on a Dana 44 a set of honed bearings come in real handy. These are bearngs tha have been honed enough that you can pull them on & off the diff by hand so when you are setting the shims, you don't destroy your good bearings pressing them on & off several times...

<a href="http://www.tennessee4x4.com/toyota">
 

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Thats the ticket, I figured i would offer up`more info on honing down the original races and bearrings to use to get close to the final setup, if someone was really gonna do it. I learned from an old Ford line mechanic, he was really good explaining what was trying to be achieved and, taking the mystery and magic out of a gear set up. It allows me to look at an axle in a junk yard as a potential swap or replacement a lot easier than before. I have done 5 set ups with good well tested results. In fact I would trust my work over someone, in the garage Ive never met before, I mean what if he's busy and doesnt have the time to do it a 4th time even if the backlash .014, do you think he's gonna say later when it busts a ring gear that it was his poor set up or your off road abuse. Now the guys at Dynatrac or Currie, Im sure they have a handle on it,but who wants to pay that money. If you like fish, learn to fish.

Jeff
89 Wrangler
If at first you dont succeed, your replacement will try and try again.
 
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I spent almost a $1000 for new ring and pinion front and rear, new posi (traclock) rear, all new bearings and seals and labor. I kept the front dif open. The gears/bearings/etc can come as a kit. My labor was about $200. It took the mechanic one day. I dropped it off in the morning and picked it up that afternoon about 5:00. That is $200-$250 total for labor including front and rear!! But this is a one owner small shop in the country but he is one of the best mechanics around. he also did my currie slip yoke eliminator kit installations for $75 labor. And installed my front ez locker for $75.

 

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$200 - $250 rear and $300 front is the norm on the West Coast.

Jeff
89 Wrangler
If at first you dont succeed, your replacement will try and try again.
 
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Also with 2.73 gears you will need a whole new carrier. I was thinking of buying complete third members already set up so I could just swap them out. That's probably the most expensive way though.

 

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Drivetrain direct has "performance packages" that include the ring & pinions for the front & rear all neccessary install parts. DO NOT mix them up with Drivetrain warehouse, which is an offshoot of 4wd wholesalers, which sucks. Drivetrain direct carries brandname gears. They can also get you a new carrier, if you need one, for about $50-$60. Im probably gonna get new gears from them soon, they had a performance package for $419 for a AMC20 or Dana 44 rear & Dana 30 front for just about any gear ratio. All neccessary parts included. They seem really nice & helpful & I have read good things about them on this board. I was quoted about $300 to put these gears in by a guy who does drivetrain work for me "Allens Driveline" in Butler, PA. He installed the full-float & ARB in our '78 CJ7 & did a good job. We are doing just about everything on our jeep ourselves, but we are leaving that to an expert. Good luck!

http://my.treeway.com/rickmelwest
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
the axles I bought are narrow width and the ones that I have under my jeep are wide so I don't want to do a straight swap. I think I'm just going to sell the axles and use that money to help pay for the swap. Thanks

 

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To swap gears here in AL, $100 each axle at most "good ole boy" shops if you bring them the parts.

/wwwthreads_images/icons/cool.gif Big Ed
'88 YJ, 4" susp,3" body,33's,283 Chevy V8,TH350,4.11's,D30,D35c
 
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