View Full Version : Build direction/comments? Tsk.

05-22-2006, 11:50 PM
I posted this elsewhere. I'm too lazy to make it right for this forum. So I'll quote myself...

Okay, I'm a little scatterbrained right now. So I'm jsut going to regurgitate everything right here. Feel free to comment.

Firstly, rollover protection. I figured I was just going to do a square tube bar and tie it into my bed, then tie the bed into the frame. Then somebody drew a picture.


Now, obviously theres some odd things happening there. The two vertical peices at the right cab corner were a mistake. Anyways, I don't feel I'm ready to exo the front yet, so we can disregard that. But from the cab back is what I plan to do. Now, I have to ask is it critical that I have that 'X' in the rollbar? It greatly complicates my life.

I feel that I shouldn't need it as I will only have minimal rollover protection if I build what is drawn from the cab back anyways. However, I will probably get pissed off and build an exo similar to the front at some point. Maybe. Then I'd feel that there should be more triangulation, thus I'd need the 'X'. Should I jsut build it without and worry about the ramifications of being lazy later?

Oh, I plan to build this all out of 3"x3"x.188" box. Comments? It's easy to work with...

Moving right along. It's front axle time.

Now, as we all know, I don't like D30s. However, I have one and 35s. To it's record I haven't broken a 260X shaft yet. However, I haven't been able to really beat on it yet. I'm still working out some oddness with the front susp. But I can feel it coming... Maybe tomorrow. And to throw a wrench into the works I want to go to 37s when this set of tires is done...

So, as a cheap fix I proposed throwing the newer 297X shafts in it. I was advised that the gain would be minimal at best as the yokes on the shafts are the same, just bored out for the bigger ujoints. This means that the yoke is the failure point. So, no broken joints, just yokes. Cute eh? So, if I'd break the 260X I'll probably break the 297X yokes. So, I might as well just write this off. Thoughts?

Next option is Chromos. Now, I've already got a gear setup done, and a trutrac. I'm not touching that. So that would mean 27 spline chromos. Which are pricey. And now I've got a polished D30. Well, not a bad D30. I'll admit that. But I still have the weak C's/knuckles. It might hold the 35s, but I ain't doing 37s with that.

Third option: The dreaded waggy LPD44. I can get one for $150 out of the pick'n'pull. No biggy. Now, this leaves a few possible routes. I will have to regear it, but I think I can get a hookup on a cheap gear setup this time. That and I'll probably use used parts (well, carrier, not sure about used gears...). Since waggy D44s were avaliable with vac disco, I contemplait welding an open carrier and using the vac disco (cable conversion) to lock/unlock the front axle. Would this work alright?

The waggy D44 makes things annoying as I will need 'new' rims. I'm having trouble finding 6 bolt chevy rims in an 8" width for cheap. That bothers me. I could convert to ford outers and use 5x5.5" ford rims, which I can get a set of 15X8s with 3"~ BS for cheap. I also need to run adapters on the 8.8 rear. This leaves me wondering if I should actually keep the 8.8. It seems to work gooder, even the LSD doesn't suck too bad. But I could throw an isuzu rear in there instead, and sell the 8.8 at a profit, and hopefully get myself 4.56 gearing. Then I'd have the chevy 6-bolt pattern on the rear. But that comes back to rims.

Last D44 option. Grab myself a ford HPD44 (I know where one is...) and cut the knuckles off, cut it down to waggy width, and run waggy shafts. I'm not sure exactly how hard this is to do. Near as I understand it I should be able to remove the knuckles by griding the welds on them out a bit, and sledgehammering them off. Then I simply mark and cut the tubs (that could be a bitch, I don't have a band saw.) Then sledgehammer knuckles back on. Insert rod in knuckles to set pinion angle corretly. Weld. Done. Yes, I can weld cast. I would then have a kickass HP non-fullwidth front. But I'd have to spend some bucks on a detriot or such. However, it would be the best in the long run. It's also the most work. Oh, and it puts me back in that same 'what rear to run' boat.


05-23-2006, 01:10 AM
I just realized that part of the reason I wanted to run a D44 was it had selectable hubs.

Man. I feel like an idiot.

Well, then I can weld the front carrier either way. And not do that vac disco poor boy shit. [35]

05-23-2006, 10:24 AM
I built the exact HP dana 44 for the front of my heep. It wasn't a big deal to make. Cut the long side of the HP44 off to the right length for the short end. Get a long tube from a Chevy 10 bolt for the other side. Hardest part was getting the short ended tube out of the HP 44 case. Can't drill them very easy. You'll have to use a torch probably, and it's a messy job. Classic Machine and Fabricating in Salmon Arm helped do mine, he could probably do it pretty easily the second time.

We used the lathe to clean out the knuckles, case and tubes so that everything was heat shrunk to fit back together nicely. Instead of using a rod in the knuckles to set the castor, Weld both the knuckles down to a welding table. Stick a small bottle jack under the pinion. Jack to set pinion. This will keep sure that your castor stays the same at both ends.

05-23-2006, 11:09 AM
why use 3x3 box tube? Thats gonna be huge, ugly, and add a lot of extra wieght. Personally I wouldn't go any bigger than 2x2

05-23-2006, 12:45 PM
why use 3x3 box tube? Thats gonna be huge, ugly, and add a lot of extra wieght. Personally I wouldn't go any bigger than 2x2

Because I typed 3x3 in the middle of the night? Actually, I think 2x2 is a tad small... But probably better. Hell, I don't know. I like things strong.

mUD uCKeR: You made a pass drop HPD44? I'm driver's, unless other things change. So I should just be able to cut down the existing tubes. Should be easier then. I'll keep the table idea in mind.

05-23-2006, 10:40 PM
Anybody else have comments on the HPD44 build? Is it really that easy to get the knuckles off and to get them back on after cutting the tubes? Or am I likely going to need to press them in...?

I'm really leaning towards this, because I figure I might as well do it fairly right.

05-24-2006, 12:34 AM
if you are keeping the ford tubes and inner C and replacing the knuckle out, then just use the desired knuckle and out (basically from balljoints out) its easy. no pressing in needed.

if you mean pulling the tube at the center section when shortening, and useing the desired tubes and outters (or even ford tubes) then there is a chance it will need to be pressed in. depends on the style, it can be pressed in and plug welded, or just slip in and plug welded.

05-24-2006, 10:06 AM
Yeah, i guess i should have clarified... i made mine pass side drop. Drivers side drop would be even easier i think. You should be fine to just cut the knuckles off with a chop saw... and then grind/ cut the tube out of the knuckles... heat the knuckle... slide it on, set the castor... let cool... weld.
One thing to keep in mind, is that some radius arm Ford dana 44's didn't actually have tube going through the radius arm mount bracket. I don't know if this applies to your diff... but something to remember if it has the radius arms, and you need to go narrower than the radius mounts.