Pirate 4x4 banner

1 - 20 of 31 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
41 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I'm retiring in 4 months and I have begun collecting parts for a 4WD conversion of my 1953 Chevy 3600 (3/4 ton) truck. This will be my first post-retirement truck project. To be clear, this isn't my first project, but my next project that I will be starting after retirement. :D

I plan to use the following:
1977 Chevy 292 (owned)
1997 GM NV4500 (owned)
1969 C20 Eaton HO52 4:10 center section for 1953 HO52 (owned)
NP205 (owned)
Chevy Dana 44 front axle 4:10 ratio - 1973-1980 8 lug (this is where I need your help)
Tires: 235/85/16 or 215/85/16

The width of the 1953 3600 front axle is 57-1/8". The width of the 1953 Eaton HO52 rear axle is 62-3/8".

Shortening the Dana 44 and using the shortest available OEM inner axle shafts will provide for an axle of 57-1/2". Or.....I could use incrementally longer short side axle shafts and build an axle that is a bit wider, if needed. The OEM inner axle shafts would be Ford Early Bronco right side (27.94") for Chevy left side and Jeep Wagoneer short side (14.7" or 15.8") for Chevy right side

I recently learned the 1978-1980 K20 Dana 44 axles use 3" axle tubes while the 1973-1977 K20 Dana 44 axles use 2.75" tubes.

So....for the questions.
Can the Early Bronco and Wagoneer axle shafts be used in the 3" tube Dana 44 housing?
Does anyone see problems with shortening the 8-lug 69.25" Dana 44 to 57-1/2 or 58-1/2"?
Besides the additional strength provided by the 3" axle tubes, do the later year model axles have an advantage over the 1973-1977 axles with the 2.75" tubes?
Which axle would you choose and why?

Thanks for all your input.
 

·
P.B.A.
Joined
·
4,403 Posts
The 80 and up axle is probably a 10 bolt not a 44. The 44 should have 1/2” walled tubes. Plenty strong enough and axle shafts are slightly bigger on the 44. Not enough to care.



Dutchman will respline shafts for $45 dollars. I just make the housings what I need cheaper than trying to find the right inner shaft
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
41 Posts
Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
The 80 and up axle is probably a 10 bolt not a 44. The 44 should have 1/2” walled tubes. Plenty strong enough and axle shafts are slightly bigger on the 44. Not enough to care.



Dutchman will respline shafts for $45 dollars. I just make the housings what I need cheaper than trying to find the right inner shaft
Thanks for that information. I didn't realize the axle shafts could be shortened for only $45. This makes things easier.

According to quad4x4.com, the Dana 44 was used until 1980 in 3/4 ton models. I pasted some text from their Dana 44 inner seal application list below.

**GM started the introduction of the GM 10 Bolt front axle in place of the Dana 44 for some axle ratios starting in 1977. For the 1978-1980 model years, the GM 10 bolt was the predominant axle. The Dana 44 was no longer used in 1/2 ton models after 1979. For 3/4 ton models, the last year of the Dana 44 was 1980.

NOTE 2: In late 1977 to 1978, GM started using Dana 44 axles with 3" instead of 2-3/4" axle tubes. The 3" axles used QU40159 seals and the 2-3/4" use QU40055 seals
 

·
blatant asshole
Joined
·
12,096 Posts
Never seen a d44 later than 78 and i pay attention to shit like that.

78 was a 1/2 year were they phased them out. Youll see both d44 and 10b.

Hosings are moot especialy since youre cutting them down to super narrow.

Shafts are moot aswell since d44 30spl and 10b 28spl both neck down at the splines to the same 1.1" diam.

If anything the 10b is considered overall stronger because the massively bigger pinion shank.

The 1 big advantage to getti g a 10b is the internal/convensional locking hub setup vrs the d44 3/4t external hubs that are currently $270.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
41 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
I spoke to a salvage yard this afternoon that allegedly has a 1979 K20 Dana 44. They will send me photos tomorrow to confirm.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
41 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
I received pics of the alleged 1979 K20 Dana 44. The axle is a 10 bolt, not a Dana 44.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
41 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
I've seen that photo somewhere before, but I can't recall where. I thought about it a bit........did that quote come from the TV show "Cheers"?


I just picked up a 1987 round pattern NP205. It's still bolted to a TH-400.

I've given more thought to a front axle. I'm thinking about going with a king pin Dana 60 from a 1980's K30 or from a 1990-1993 Dodge 250/350. Is one preferred over the other?
 

·
blatant asshole
Joined
·
12,096 Posts
I've seen that photo somewhere before, but I can't recall where. I thought about it a bit........did that quote come from the TV show "Cheers"?


I just picked up a 1987 round pattern NP205. It's still bolted to a TH-400.

I've given more thought to a front axle. I'm thinking about going with a king pin Dana 60 from a 1980's K30 or from a 1990-1993 Dodge 250/350. Is one preferred over the other?
The track width on the dodge is 2" narrower and the perches are a 1/2" wider. If you aftermarket/rear springs you can shit them out with some washers or if they are tall lift springs you can just stretch them to fit.

Otherwise get the chevy
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
41 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
The track width on the dodge is 2" narrower and the perches are a 1/2" wider. If you aftermarket/rear springs you can shit them out with some washers or if they are tall lift springs you can just stretch them to fit.

Otherwise get the chevy


total newb,
Thanks for all of your help thus far. I have more questions.

Why is the Chevy axle preferred over the Dodge?

Nearly all of the Chevy Dana 60 axles I've found are DRW. From the information I've read here and from searching for parts, I have determined parts to convert a Chevy DRW front Dana 60 to SRW are expensive and/or unavailable. I did see two different methods for machining/welding DRW hub for SRW, but they seem a bit sketchy. I have found more SRW Dodge axles than Chevy.

I'm clear on the Chevy trucks that have the Dana 60 king pin axles, but I'm not clear on which model Dodge trucks have Dana 60 kingpin axles WITHOUT CAD and have INTERNAL lockouts OR that have the full time internal spline hubs that can be easily converted to lockout hubs. Am I looking for a 1990-1993 W250/350 front Dana 60?
 

·
blatant asshole
Joined
·
12,096 Posts
Thanks for all of your help thus far. I have more questions.

Why is the Chevy axle preferred over the Dodge?
the wider axle gives more steering angle for bigger tires. Always had internal hubs. Always had 9/16 rh studs. More available and more chevys being used/built and it was bolt in.

Nearly all of the Chevy Dana 60 axles I've found are DRW. From the information I've read here and from searching for parts, I have determined parts to convert a Chevy DRW front Dana 60 to SRW are expensive and/or unavailable.
depends on how you want to deal with. I loke running h1 wheels thusly negating the drw hub offset.

I did see two different methods for machining/welding DRW hub for SRW, but they seem a bit sketchy. I have found more SRW Dodge axles than Chevy.

I'm clear on the Chevy trucks that have the Dana 60 king pin axles, but I'm not clear on which model Dodge trucks have Dana 60 kingpin axles WITHOUT CAD
no kingpin d60 from any truck ever had a cad.

and have INTERNAL lockouts OR that have the full time internal spline hubs that can be easily converted to lockout hubs. Am I looking for a 1990-1993 W250/350 front Dana 60?
yes.


You can buy brand new srw hubs from various vendors.
You can just keep an eye on forums and market places for partouts and selloffs.

Ive traded a few sets of hubs for one or the other when ive found some one that needed mine. Mutual or one sided shipping costs depending on the trade.

Companies like wfo or any decent machine shop can mill your hubs down for you if you tell them the hub pilot finished diam you desire.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
41 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
For my application, the wider axle is not beneficial because I will be narrowing it for the 1953 3600. Thanks for the Dana 60 kingpin axles not having CAD. I did find new Dana 60 SRW hubs, but man are they expensive. 2 hubs are about the same cost as a complete axle assembly. My brother has a lathe that is large enough to turn down the DRW hub OD to the correct diameter and face-off the lug holes, but it still looks a bit sketchy for street use. I found WFO's website. Thanks for that.

I have a question about Chevy Dana 44 axles. I attached a couple pics of a 1977 K20 with a full time front axle. It is a 1977, so it should be a Dana 44 and it appears to be internally splined. What is needed besides a set of lockouts to convert this axle to lockout hubs. Thanks again for your help.
 

Attachments

·
blatant asshole
Joined
·
12,096 Posts
If it is a 77 with the original axle it should be an external locking hub d44. Mine was and every d44 3/4t should be. It might have a 77 build date and actualy be a 78. Hard to say with out seeing all the axle details.

Some one may have swapped it out.
It should have a 203 tcase if it has drive slugs.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
41 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
At the risk of being a PITA, I just received a photo of the full time axle in that 1977 K20. Looks like a Dana 44 to me. Do you agree this is a Dana 44 with internal spline hubs?

The best prices I could find were: A complete 1989 K20 DRW Dana 60 with 50k miles for $800 plus shipping and A complete 1992 W250 DRW Dana 60 with 43k miles for $650 plus shipping. If they were SRW axles I'd buy one of them, but the cost to convert to SRW (without machining) is tooo much for me. My original plan was a Dana 44, so I think I'll go with that. I can get that complete Dana 44 (if it's a 44) for $335. I just don't think a mild Chevy 292 in a 1953 Chevy 3600 with a NV4500, 4:10 gears and 31" tires warrants the extra strength and expense of a Dana 60.
 

Attachments

1 - 20 of 31 Posts
Top