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Old 10-18-2013, 03:11 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Currie Rock Jock 44 Long Term Test

Sorry if too long. I started building a typical JK build for all around use, trails, rocks, desert, DD, etc. Chromo axles and gears, etc. When sharing the Jeep with my dad, we began seeing the compromises. Not just compromises in build direction, but scheduling compromises.

We both needed / wanted the Jeep for some of the same events. So I got my own used JK to build for my needs, and started to convert the original '12 more towards dads use. I put a Currie 35 spline 9" floater in the rear (pretty cool set-up reusing factory brakes), 2" wider than stock with Motive Gears and ARB.

That leads me to the Rock Jock 44. You see, dad is an old (sorry) baja guy, and spends more time there than local trails. He didn't want the weight of a 60, is old school and thinks 9" Fords are rear ends only, so a tough 44 was going to be the answer.

There were several choices, all pretty good, when Ray and David from Currie mentioned they were just about to run prototype #1 of the new RJ44. Dad and I were about to start a 3000 mile Jeep trip, and what better place to start testing!

I'll post some pics here and continue in another post.

Austin
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Old 10-23-2013, 11:47 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Some TECH:
  • Nodular iron
  • 3" tubes / .375 wall
  • Minimum 5/16" casting cross section
  • Johnny Joints on upper mounts
  • Flow through pinion bearing oiling
  • 3/16" brackets
  • Currie HD inner C forgings
  • Made in USA
So we pick up the new 44 just as Currie get's it done on Tuesday late afternoon, and start ripping the D30 out of the Jeep that night and installing the 44 (we waited just in case there was a hiccup). We were scheduled to leave SoCal Wednesday at 4am heading for Jeepers Jamboree.

The install went smooth, helped by the pre-installed Johnny Joints in the housing. We were buttoned up and finished packing about 1am. A little sleep and off we head for Georgetown!

75mph most of the way and meet up with Scott and Tandi Hartman for their first Rubicon trip.

First 4 days and over 500 miles and Rubicon trail. So far so good!

More to come...
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Old 10-24-2013, 06:42 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Front end looks tough but damn that rear end is sexy.
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Old 10-24-2013, 08:02 AM   #4 (permalink)
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So is this a standard 44 or a JK44 center section? I thought the JK center sections and gears were stronger than a standard 44?

Looks nice either way! Nothing wrong with a 44 used appropriately.

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Old 10-24-2013, 08:35 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Upgrade your weak Dana 44 with a RockJock® 44

Corona, CA - Currie Enterprises, the leader in high performance differentials, has just announced their latest offering. The new RockJock® 44 high and low pinion front and rear differentials offer the industry’s best features and they address all of the weak links associated with factory Dana 44s. The RockJock® 44 housing is an accumulation of Currie’s 55 years of building axle housings, 25 years of their own rock crawling experience and their expertise developed through years of building axle units used by competitors in the most grueling of off road competitions. All RockJock® 44’s are 100% new ductile iron center castings ensuring long lasting durability and they include 3” x .375” seamless axle tubes for incredible strength. The new RockJock® 44 accepts larger JK ring and pinion sets, all commonly available carriers and can use the factory Jeep JK Rubicon front locker. Not only is the RockJock® 44 capable of fitting most off-road applications but Currie specifically built complete high pinion front and low pinion rearends for Jeep JK and TJ Wranglers that bolt directly in to the stock suspension. All JK and TJ front housings include Johnny Joint® rod ends in place of the upper control arm bushings. The JK front housings can use most of the stock components while increasing strength with heavy duty inner c-knuckles, heavy duty brackets, and Currie’s exclusive “flow thru” oiling system. For more information and to order, go to Currie Enterprises - Custom Rearends, Jeep/Off-road Parts, Crate Rearends, 4x4 Rearends , call (714)528-6957 or visit us at SEMA booth #35077.
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Old 10-24-2013, 10:08 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghetto Fab. View Post
So is this a standard 44 or a JK44 center section? I thought the JK center sections and gears were stronger than a standard 44?

Looks nice either way! Nothing wrong with a 44 used appropriately.

Kevo
Good question - yes, it uses the JK gear sets, which have the Dana 60 style inner pinion bearing and larger pinion stem.

Austin
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Old 10-24-2013, 03:55 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Here's a link directly to some of the RJ44 products on Currie's website:

Currie Enterprises Racing Rear End Categories

So we finish another awesome Jeepers Jamboree, and run back to Placerville to drop off my mom for a flight home and pick up our hardtops that we expect to need in Colorado at All4Fun.

We hit the road for Moab, and make a quick stop at the Bonneville Salt Flats for some speed tests between JK's and photos. Another 650 miles at about 80-85. Next stop: Moab

From Curries website:
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Old 10-24-2013, 11:36 PM   #8 (permalink)
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We left Bonneville and drove on to Moab, another 350 miles or so. No noise, no leaks, all good on the Rock Jock 44. So far no wrenches needed - no problems. The weather was great, just a little hot mid day (it was early August) but really nice at night.

We ran a couple trails and grabbed some dinner at Zax, and got some sleep. We had an early morning wake up for our next leg of the trip, heading to Leadville CO and the Mile High Jeep Club's ALL4FUN event.

Austin
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Old 10-26-2013, 11:57 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Early am start to head to CO, which was tough as we had most of the trails to ourselves in Moab. We get to Leadville and meet up with some friends (PSC Larry, PBB Lance, Chris and Andy Synergy, drtnasty from Nebraska) and run some trails and have a great time. If you get a chance to do ALL4FUN with the Mile High Jeep Club - do it. Oh, and it's over a mile high!

We planned on a southern route back to SoCal, but convinced Chris and Andy Moab was calling. So back we headed for some more awesome wheeling in one of my favorite places.

Las leg of this trip was a banzai run down the 15, including 116 degrees from Mesquite to Stateline. Brutal. We ran into a major slowdown just after Baker, and jumped off the highway for some more dirt.

Stats for this trip:
3200+ miles
10 days
7 trails
Brutal temps at speed
37x13.50 BFGoodrich KRT's - pretty heavy / wide tire.

The Currie Rock Jock 44 had no leaks, seeps, noise or any issues at all. Very happy with the additional strength and peace of mind on the housing and C-ends.

I'll wrap up this long term test next post with current info.

Thanks,
Austin
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Old 10-28-2013, 09:44 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Does Currie cast the pumpkin and do the machining all in house?
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Old 10-28-2013, 11:43 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
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Does Currie cast the pumpkin and do the machining all in house?
The castings are to Currie's specs / drawings poured in a US foundry, and machined there. QC is done at Currie's facility.

Austin
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Old 11-02-2013, 09:58 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Current Update 11-2-13:

The Rock Jock 44 was inspected after about 3600 miles, gears and bearings were perfect. No heat or lubrication issues at all. We did get to add the new Rock Jock cover after inspection - heavy duty and includes dipstick.

Since this initial 3200 mile trip, we have added a couple Baja trips, a couple Big Bear weekends, and are preparing the Jeep for pre-running the Baja 1000 next week.

Over 8500 miles, trails, deserts, heat, whoops and the RJ44 has been flawless. I know it's not for everyone, but if you're thinking of a 44, or lighter weight and cost savings are part of your build, this 44 deserves a look.

Austin
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Old 11-23-2013, 12:03 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Austin asked me to update his thread since I'm usually driving the white JK. Well as of today the Rock Jock 44 has over 11,000 miles with zero problems. And yes I did bend the original factory Dana 30 rather easily.

The last couple of weeks we beat on the JK pretty good, putting about 1000 miles in Baja on it. Here's a couple pictures and and a video we put together from our pre run of the Baja 1000 course. The Rock Jock 44 and the 35 spline F9 full floater were awesome in the never ending silt. We were like the rescue Jeep, pulling stuck prerunners out of the silt, picking up bikers out of fuel, and carrying enough cold drinks for about 6 people that didn't plan so well! Currie arms, springs and steering along with Fox Racing Shox have handled everything I can throw at them.

I've got to also mention the Synergy Manufacturing ball joints Currie supplied with the housing - super tough!

Baja 1000 Pre Run - YouTube
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