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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
howdy fellas....
my ongoing search for a suitable front axle continues...
id liek some opinions as to whether curries new d60knuckles out conversoin for the d44 is strong enough or worth it for my application.
(let me give a little backround...my goal tire size is 37 or 38 at the max. soon i will be running an lt1 700r4 combo, that will back up to my pre-existing atlas. i consider myself a finesse wheeler, but when its called for, i can get on the gas a little.)
basically, id just like to knwo a few things from you all....do you think it will hold up alright? should i just cough up the extra 1000-2000 for a custom built r60?
i do like the weight savings, and the fac ti can get a housing that the can use to do the conversion for very cheap prices.
in any case...gimme the straight dope.
 

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Just go with the sixty you won't regret it. Spending a ton of money on a 44 still nets you a 44. With the sixty you get 1.5" 35 spline shafts. Ain't no way you are getting that with a 44.

Bigger is Better for the size tire you want to run.

[ 08-07-2001: Message edited by: Mike Knorr ]
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
thanks for the reply mike....i suppose a r60 would better match the beast of a rear axle i have...
almost done building a j10 d60 rear. comes with 5x5.5 and 35 spline axle shafts stock....the internals are all just incredibly huge.
~John
 

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Doesn't Currie want something like $3K-$4K for that conversion? For that kind of dough I think you could get a 60. How tough do you suppose it would be to do the conversion yourself? Find a bent, broken or otherwise worthless D60 front end and swap the knuckles onto a 44. Makes sense, the weak point of a D44 front end is the U-joint isn't it? Isn't that basically what a Dana 50 is ( A D44 with D60 u-joints)?
 

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A few key points on Curries D44 conversion.

They use all HD Ford outer components. The hubs, which are normally eight lug, are machined down and redrilled to five lug.
No easy thing to do in the garage <IMG SRC="smilies/biggrin.gif" border="0">

The inner knuckles are one offs made for the conversion, to fit the smaller tubes of the D44.

I don't know price for the conversion, but I would imagine it would be cheaper than a shaved D60R with five lug, and you still keep ground clearence of the 44.
 

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you will pay dearly to run 5 lug, and its not even worth, I mean all it does is allow you to keep your wheels. I bet you could get a 8 lug front 60 for less and you won't have 30 spline front axles.
 

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Originally posted by Robert:
<STRONG>They use all HD Ford outer components. The hubs, which are normally eight lug, are machined down and redrilled to five lug.
No easy thing to do in the garage <IMG SRC="smilies/biggrin.gif" border="0"></STRONG>
No, but how tough or expensive would it be for a machinist to do? I can't imagine it would be more than about $100/side. They also had some sort adapter machined to mount the caliper, and they probably had to machine the rotor. Of course this is assuming you wanted to keep the 5 lug pattern in the first place.

Originally posted by Robert:
<STRONG>The inner knuckles are one offs made for the conversion, to fit the smaller tubes of the D44.</STRONG>
That I didn't know. What is the tube size of a 60 vs a 44? Sounds like another trip to the machinist to build a shim. Do you suppose Currie would sell you a pair of individual inner knuckles?

Originally posted by Robert:
<STRONG>I don't know price for the conversion, but I would imagine it would be cheaper than a shaved D60R with five lug, and you still keep ground clearence of the 44.</STRONG>
Read an article about it in 4WD & SUV, I think they quoted a price of $3K-$4K. They indicated it was really for the guy who had already invested quite a bit into his 44 and was breaking U-Joints all the time. Still it seems like you could start over with a D60 for that kind of cash. I do like the idea though if they could do it for say $1000 I think it would be worth it.
 

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Currie wants 3400 for their hybrid setup which in my opinion is a big waste of time...You still end up with 44 insides. you can get a dana 60 front end 5 on 5 1/2, custom width with an ARB for 4300 from sams off road and you could probably get DTS to beat the price and the time to build. You could also get 5/16 heavy wall tube. This is a much better set up and despite the little over an inch in ground clearance it is of little concern when you consider that differential ground clearance is not nearly as important as skid plate clearance. You would be gaining immense amounts of strength and would be much more secure running 38's... <IMG SRC="smilies/bounce2.gif" border="0">
 

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I am in the process of building a High Pinion 60 for the front of mine right now. It will be 5 on 5.5. The machine work for the hubs and rotors cost me a whopping $150.00. So that $1000 they want to get you 5 on 5.5 they are just bending you over. I am not saying a sixty is cheap and actually $3000 isn't a bad price. I will still end up with around $2500 in mine by the time you figure new gears and a detroit and new axle shafts. But hey you gotta pay to play.
 

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A few options for you:

#1 - Sunray Engineering, Weatherford, TX, 817-594-9201, Tom Ellison or Gerald Fronk.
These are the innovators of the hybrid axle, original hybrid axle was a 44/60 combo, proved not to be strong enough, although it was run for several years. Tom tried many different combinations. Ended up as the Ford 9"/Dana 60 Hybrid...bulletproof. Better ground clearance than a 60 as well...and when you shave it...it's crazy! Lighter, better R&P contact than a 60, etc...downside is the price. Also, 35-spline throughout, that's 1.5" diameter, some people go with 30-spline outers though to save $$...I broke one while doing a 3rd gear WFO wheelie...didn't let off when I landed...CRUNCH....Tom upgraded PUCKER to 35-spline outers free...no breakage since...running 38.5" SX's and a heavy right foot! <IMG SRC="smilies/smile.gif" border="0">

#2 - For the budget axle, get a 60, don't cut it, lock it, gear it, use Hummer 8-lug beadlock wheels. This is a low-cost effective axle swap. Buddy of mine, Ed in the Rock Taxi, has done this, just a tad over a grand from what I recall for the front.

Hope this helps, research all the options!

Brad
 

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just get a dana60 all this hybrid stuff is a bunch of crap. why spend mega bucks to have a weaker setup? i don't care if you use a d44 center or a 9" it's weaker and for what? a little ground clearance? if you want ground clearance get bigger tires. get a 60 and narrow it yourself. i did and the only cost was haveing the shafts cut down by moser ($120 for two shafts). i have a buddy with a hybrid 9" from sunray and i will never regret sticking with the 60. i have 62" wide d60 front and a 62" wide 14bolt both with detroits and 4.56's and i have less than half in them as a hybrid would cost.
 

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Originally posted by Mike Knorr:
<STRONG>I am in the process of building a High Pinion 60 for the front of mine right now. It will be 5 on 5.5. The machine work for the hubs and rotors cost me a whopping $150.00. So that $1000 they want to get you 5 on 5.5 they are just bending you over. I am not saying a sixty is cheap and actually $3000 isn't a bad price. I will still end up with around $2500 in mine by the time you figure new gears and a detroit and new axle shafts. But hey you gotta pay to play.</STRONG>
Really? What did you start with Chevy? Ford? Dodge? What exactly did you have machined? What did you use for rotors? Calipers? Do 15" Wheels fit? Sorry for all the questions, but this looks like good info.
 

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In the latest JP mag there is an article, page 34 "Implant Surgery". Superior Axle and Gears' new 33 spline Dana 44 axle shafts mated to the OX locker. The axle shafts are 1.42 inches in diameter gaining a 40% increase in strength over a 30 spline D44 axle. The 35 spline D60 is only 16% stronger than the 33 spline D44 but huge gains in clearance coupled with D60 outers you should have a very stout axle. The article refers to rear axles, but there is always hope. The Superior 33 spline D44 axle with Ox locker retails for $1300.
Just my 2 cents worth. <IMG SRC="smilies/biggrin.gif" border="0">
 

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Currie quoted me $4200 to convert my high pinion 9". This basically included everything except the third member/locker/gears. Complete brakes are included in this price. If you are going to run a V-8 why don't you go with the 60? You will need the extra beef of the D60 ring and pinion!
Dok
 

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Originally posted by PUCKER:
<STRONG>A few options for you:

#1 - Sunray Engineering, Weatherford, TX, 817-594-9201, Tom Ellison or Gerald Fronk.
These are the innovators of the hybrid axle, original hybrid axle was a 44/60 combo, proved not to be strong enough, although it was run for several years. Tom tried many different combinations. Ended up as the Ford 9"/Dana 60 Hybrid...bulletproof. Better ground clearance than a 60 as well...and when you shave it...it's crazy! Lighter, better R&P contact than a 60, etc...downside is the price. Also, 35-spline throughout, that's 1.5" diameter, some people go with 30-spline outers though to save $$...I broke one while doing a 3rd gear WFO wheelie...didn't let off when I landed...CRUNCH....Tom upgraded PUCKER to 35-spline outers free...no breakage since...running 38.5" SX's and a heavy right foot! <IMG SRC="smilies/smile.gif" border="0">

#2 - For the budget axle, get a 60, don't cut it, lock it, gear it, use Hummer 8-lug beadlock wheels. This is a low-cost effective axle swap. Buddy of mine, Ed in the Rock Taxi, has done this, just a tad over a grand from what I recall for the front.

Hope this helps, research all the options!

Brad</STRONG>
Here's a pic I took of Brad 'going easy' on his axles... <IMG SRC="smilies/biggrin.gif" border="0"> Y'all just call Sunray <IMG SRC="smilies/biggrin.gif" border="0">
BTW. Brad, We're heading to Moab on the 23rd of Sept. <IMG SRC="smilies/bounce2.gif" border="0">
 

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Really? What did you start with Chevy? Ford? Dodge?
Ford, it uses the 30 spline outers not the 35. But still gives you a stronger u-joiunt.

What exactly did you have machined?
Had the hubs turned down to fit inside the 5 on 5.5 bolt pattern. Had them redrilled 5 on 5.5. Then you have to take a half ton rotor and open it up a little to fit on the hub.
<IMG width=136 height=127 SRC="http://www.pirate4x4.com/ubb/uploads/sixty2s.jpg">
<IMG width=119 height=120 SRC="http://www.pirate4x4.com/ubb/uploads/sixty3s.jpg">
<IMG width=120 height=118 SRC="http://www.pirate4x4.com/ubb/uploads/sixty4s.jpg">

What did you use for rotors?
F-150 opened up a little.

Calipers?
Chevy but would be just as easy or easier to use ford half ton stuff.

Do 15" Wheels fit?
Yes thats the point. Keep your same wheels and tires.

Hope that helps.
 

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Mike,
Thanks for the pics and the explanation. That looks like a sweet setup. Couple more questions though. How did you mount the calipers? Did you use the D60 Brackets or D44? Does the spindle have the same 6 bolt pattern? I would assume it would be bigger. Thanks again.
 
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