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Old 04-20-2004, 09:04 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Swapping in a Dana 30?

How hard is it to swap in a dana 30 to a 1986 ranger? I have rims and tires and would like to use them. Plus It will hardly ever be wheeled hard. Occasional trails no rocks. this is hawaii so finding a eb dana 44 or a dana 44 out of anything is doubtful. Im pretty sure I can find a dana 30 out of an xj though. What should I look for? The truck is currently lifted 6 inches with coils and drop brackets. Thanks for the help. This is a great tech site
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Old 04-20-2004, 09:28 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I would look for a D35 from a Ford Explorer. Not only is it a bit stronger than a XJ D30 axle, it just bolts right in.
It is still a Twin-Beam though. Many people believe thats a big huge detriment or something, but it works quite well if you build it right (getting rid of the super-stiff coils that are usually a part of TTB liftkits for some softer flexy ones is the first step).

You might also check out www.therangerstation.com . Lots of useful info for just about anything Ranger related. This site isn't exactly what you want for something thats" hardly ever wheeled hard" or "no rocks". Its all about crawling rocks here.
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Old 04-20-2004, 09:37 PM   #3 (permalink)
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thanks I checked that out. So I think itll get the dana 35. Can it handle 35's though? I have 35's now(came with truck and would like to retain them). My dana 28 has bad ball joints now so ill be changing them. Will the dana 35 be strong enough for 35's? Is their a way for it to be strengthend? thanks alot for the help. So if I find a dana 35 kit off an explorer or ranger itll swap right in? Do I need to grab everything or just the axles?
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Old 04-20-2004, 09:38 PM   #4 (permalink)
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also are you the same 4x4junkie that did the dana 44 ttb swap on the ranger at therangerstation? Im reading an article about that. Im really just trying to find something strong and can wheel decently w/o breaking shit.
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Old 04-20-2004, 09:51 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Yea, I did that swap. That was some 7 years ago before I realized the D44 had the same parts as a 35. Looking back, I would've either just kept the 35, or gone all out for a D60.

The D35 will spin 35" tires no problem. The only real weak spot is the stock locking hubs. Replacement with Warn pt#37780 will take care of that (these are the same ones used in the Jeep rear full-float conversions).
Throw some Spicer 5-760x joints in it also, while you're at it.
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Old 04-20-2004, 09:57 PM   #6 (permalink)
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hey man thanks for the help. I think you just saved me from spending a shit load of money I dont have and doing things not necesscary. I think im gona find a dana 35 front and put in the part numbers you suggested. Do I need to take everything from the dana 35 vehicle or just the axle parts?
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Old 04-20-2004, 11:21 PM   #7 (permalink)
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also my truck has a lift kit so is their any problems with swapping? also please dont flame me for this but what exactly do I need to take. Does someone have a pic? Im kinda lost as to what I need to get. Im also changing the ball joints soon. Do I use the same ones when I get a dana 35
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Old 04-20-2004, 11:24 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluemarlin04
also my truck has a lift kit so is their any problems with swapping?

shouldn't be.....
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Old 04-21-2004, 12:58 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Grab the whole axle along with the steering linkage.
The 35's pinion is a bit longer. Check the driveshaft length. Because you're lifted, you might not have to mess with it. You may need to ream out the radius arm holes slightly.
Look only in 4.0L-engine'd vehicles for the 35. There are some D28/35 "hybrid" things out there in non-4.0L Rangers you don't want to end up with.

What brand is your suspension kit? Hope its not one that has that stupid "drop-plate" bracket insert for the passengerside (unfortunately, this is a majority of them). These have been known to bust open the D35 housings. You could put a big huge bumpstop on it, but this will hurt your suspension flex.

Skyjacker kits don't use the drop-plate.
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Old 04-21-2004, 01:26 AM   #10 (permalink)
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truthfully Im not quite sure what brand I have. It has pro comp shocks all around and a pro comp steering stabalizer. I cant tell because the previous owner painted it blue. Is their a way to tell what it is? it has drop plates and dropped radius arms. I think im not sure. But it is 6 inches I believe. thanks
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