Stock axel shafts Vs. Chromoly shafts

Alexkin60

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Hi all,

I plan to re gear my stock 4.10 axels on Rubicon JL to 4.88 .
When it's being done, should I change stock axel shafts to chromoly ones? I run 37's now, regular 3.6L V6, auto 8speed tranny, Dana 44. Or stock axel shafts will do just fine.
Thanx
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2Wheel-Lee

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I just regeared mine to 5.13, running 37s. It was a lot easier to replace the front axles while it's all apart. There's a lot more work doing the fronts than the rears. I just ordered the rears, and I'll do that when they arrive - those are quick and easy to replace.

How well the stock ones will do depends on how your drive offroad.
 

ArizonaJLUR

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Not to thread jack, but the new JL 44s are supposed to be stronger then the JKs right?

Anyone have numbers for the differences?
 

Halstem1

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Reviving this thread as opposed to starting a new one.

I'm looking to do a gear swap soon. Curious if its worth swapping any shafts to chromoly while its in the shop. It appears the rear costs about $400-500 depending on brand. How much strength is added by swapping? It it worth doing since it would likely just be the parts cost since they already have the shafts pulled. If I have a camper trailer I'm pulling, would it make the rig more reliable?

The front looks like its more expensive. Not sure I can afford at the time. Most front axle shaft failures I've seen are more related to the u-joints. Seems it would make more sense to wait and go to RCVs when I can. However, the rear seems like an easy upgrade to do while its apart.

Thoughts? Thanks!
 

2Wheel-Lee

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Reviving this thread as opposed to starting a new one.

I'm looking to do a gear swap soon. Curious if its worth swapping any shafts to chromoly while its in the shop. It appears the rear costs about $400-500 depending on brand. How much strength is added by swapping? It it worth doing since it would likely just be the parts cost since they already have the shafts pulled. If I have a camper trailer I'm pulling, would it make the rig more reliable?

The front looks like its more expensive. Not sure I can afford at the time. Most front axle shaft failures I've seen are more related to the u-joints. Seems it would make more sense to wait and go to RCVs when I can. However, the rear seems like an easy upgrade to do while its apart.

Thoughts? Thanks!
I have no way of determining how much stronger chromoly shafts are than stock. I installed the RCVs in the front and Spicer chromoly shafts in the rear.

I'm not sure how capable you are, but swapping the rear axles later is really easy and relatively quick to do. The fronts are a bit more work, but still not too much time.

Shop around. I got the rear Spicer chromoly axles shipped to my door for $322. Sorry, I don't have the link.

To answer your question if the camper trailer would make your rig more reliable, I don't know. ;)
 

Halstem1

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To answer your question if the camper trailer would make your rig more reliable, I don't know. ;)
haha. you know what I meant. ;)

Thanks for the reply. I've watch a couple videos and the rear don't look horrible to do. I wasn't sure if that was just because they had experience with axles or they're actually that easy. I'm still learning on axles, but the whole point of chromoly is the steel is stronger, right?

In the front, I feel like if you're gonna do anything, you might as well do RCVs.
 

Halstem1

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I have 37's on my JLR and find a lot of reservations as gear and axle change costs look like $4,000. Broken front and bent rear housing reports give me cause for the pause. Full frt. and rear axle swaps look like $20G but that's one and done.
What are you pricing for $4K? that would have to be like gears, axles, rcv's up front and trusses. I hope that isn't just a gear swap.

I'm not an expert by any means, but any bent housings or broken fronts that I have seen so far were involved in some wheeling harder than anything I will ever do or an actual accident. Although I'd love to swap out the front for a Ultimate Dana 44 (keep my factory lockers), its about $5K I don't think I need to spend unless something breaks.

Ben on JK Gear & Gadgets is doing a video series now on beefing up the 44's on his gladiator. That is the route I'm going. There are a lot of people running 40's on beefed up 44's. Not sure i'll do that but I also don't wheel at hard as some.

Certainly when my JLUR is paid off, I wouldn't be opposed to a Hemi swap and some dynatrac 60's. But that is years down the road.
 

Halstem1

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Like you said. "haha, you know what I mean" ;). IMO, those built 44's still won't be as strong as a time tested, Dynatrac 44/60 or 60/60 type swap. I read LiteBrite bent their rear 44 axle front to back not top to bottom. I question if a top truss is going to bullet proof a frt. or rear stock D44 housing.
Anyway, I'm expressing my opinions/ my thoughts and I'm not going to argue my point. Your money and time and I'm not judging your decision. Cheers.
No argument here. Or judgement. I thought you were commenting on the original question of stock shafts vs chromoly shafts. I'm about 5 years from doing a Dynatrac 60/60 upgrade so I'm going to spend the $4K for now. If I'm lucky, I'll do something crazy enough to break my 44 and then I have a reason to get the 60's. But I doubt that happens.
 

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Alexkin60

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Reviving this thread as opposed to starting a new one.

I'm looking to do a gear swap soon. Curious if its worth swapping any shafts to chromoly while its in the shop. It appears the rear costs about $400-500 depending on brand. How much strength is added by swapping? It it worth doing since it would likely just be the parts cost since they already have the shafts pulled. If I have a camper trailer I'm pulling, would it make the rig more reliable?

The front looks like its more expensive. Not sure I can afford at the time. Most front axle shaft failures I've seen are more related to the u-joints. Seems it would make more sense to wait and go to RCVs when I can. However, the rear seems like an easy upgrade to do while its apart.

Thoughts? Thanks!
hi,
while you are at working on the front and rear gears, you should change axel shafts as well. as you said, you only need to pay for the parts and install labor is $0. i did mine, it was great. at the same time they changed to custom drive shafts front and rear. you WANNA limit the chances of trail break down.
 

Halstem1

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hi,
while you are at working on the front and rear gears, you should change axel shafts as well. as you said, you only need to pay for the parts and install labor is $0. i did mine, it was great. at the same time they changed to custom drive shafts front and rear. you WANNA limit the chances of trail break down.
Thanks for the input. That was my thought process too. What brand did you go with? did you just do chromoly? how about the FAD delete? Mines a daily driver so I think I'm gonna leave my FAD.
 

MarkY3130

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So what is the consensuses for what is the best rear axles?
Similar to the poster above, I have the Dana rears and the RCV (keeping FAD) in the front.

Pretty sure the strongest ones available for front and rear are made by RCV. The best axles will have the splines ‘rolled’ in instead of ‘cut’ in. If you aren’t familiar with that it could be a fun google search to pass some time.

Where the consensus will deviate is that people have different opinions on how strong is too strong. If your axle shaft is so strong that failures will be ring/pinion related, that may not be what you are wanting in your build. Maybe you then intentionally make your driveshaft the weak point?

All depends on what you want, but I don’t think there is much debate on the RCV being the strongest.
 

Halstem1

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Similar to the poster above, I have the Dana rears and the RCV (keeping FAD) in the front.

Pretty sure the strongest ones available for front and rear are made by RCV. The best axles will have the splines ‘rolled’ in instead of ‘cut’ in. If you aren’t familiar with that it could be a fun google search to pass some time.

Where the consensus will deviate is that people have different opinions on how strong is too strong. If your axle shaft is so strong that failures will be ring/pinion related, that may not be what you are wanting in your build. Maybe you then intentionally make your driveshaft the weak point?

All depends on what you want, but I don’t think there is much debate on the RCV being the strongest.
those rear RCV sets are expensive. Which I don't really get because I thought the point of RCV was the joint up front. But 400$ chromoly verse 1800$ rear RCV. Better be a lot stronger. Like you said, maybe too strong.

for the price, chromoly rears seems like good insurance for the cost. I haven't done enough research on the front yet. I was most concerned with twisting the splines on the rear pushing more weight or pulling a trailer. The front though I think upgrades more like the actual u-joints.

I'm still learning.
 

2Wheel-Lee

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The steel that RCV uses is much stronger than the typical chromoly axles - either in the front or rear.

However, by the time you're done building 44s with gears, RCVs (front and rear), and truss work, it would have been crazy not to consider bigger axle assemblies. Even just a Ford SuperDuty front and a 14b rear. Actually, I have some regret putting as much effort as I did with my 44s (geared, trussed, RCV front, chromoly rear).
 

MarkY3130

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those rear RCV sets are expensive. Which I don't really get because I thought the point of RCV was the joint up front. But 400$ chromoly verse 1800$ rear RCV. Better be a lot stronger. Like you said, maybe too strong.

for the price, chromoly rears seems like good insurance for the cost. I haven't done enough research on the front yet. I was most concerned with twisting the splines on the rear pushing more weight or pulling a trailer. The front though I think upgrades more like the actual u-joints.

I'm still learning.
RCV is insanely expensive for what it is. I bit the bullet on the fronts because I wanted the CV joint, but no way could I justify it on the rears. And for the rears to be more money than the fronts seems crazy to me.
 
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