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on my beater cherokee, i want to weld the front, but dont want to brake every time it goes out. it will be on forest trails in the dirt, not rocks. will it hold up or am i just begging for trouble on 31" tires?
 

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The axle shafts/ujoints won't like you. Is it a cad axle or newer non disco? Reason I ask is if it's disco then you will be able to turn when you are out of 4 by, since it will "disconnect" if not you will be locked all the time.
 

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My buddy has had luck with the welded 30 in his YJ on 33"s SOA. He drives pretty hard, but its mostly muddy trails here by us too. I would just recommend not airing down the tires as much to limit grip and less strain. It will really suck if you drive it on the pavement at all and try to turn.
 

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Welded the d30 and the 8.25 in my beater XJ. Pick up a spare set of axle shafts to keep as trail spares but it will be fine. Ran mine on rocks, mud, jumped it, etc and only broke one u-joint. Swap in a spare and keep riding.
 

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A HP D30 is a pretty good little axle if you treat it right. TJ axles with 297/760 joints would be a good cheap upgrade. You just need to change a seal or two. They don't stand up to jumping too well, but a truss will help the rest. A lot of guys out here on the West Coast run them with alloys, lockers and 35s and run them in the rocks, and they hold up pretty well.

Like someone already said, It should hold up to 31s and lincoln lockers as long as you watch the skinny pedal. Spare axles are cheap.
 
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