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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm looking for some opinions on how much I should sink into my diffs. First, the background. I've got a 77' F-150 SWB with 6" of suspension lift under it with a HP D44 and a 9" with 3.54 and 3.50 gears currently running on 36x12.50 TSL bias. This is my DD but I don't mind sacraficing some streetability. I've got a D60 sitting around for the rear and plan on a 60 up front, but not for another season or two (or until I spew whats under there now).

What I want to know is how much $$ would you spend on the 44 and 9" considering they won't be around forever? I want to run Detroits front and rear but I'm not sure I want to drop that kind of cash on these little diffs. I obviously need some gears.

So what would you do? Just gears? Go with lock-rites instead? Or say fawk it and just pimp out the 44 and 9" with gears, Detroits, shafts, and CTMs then wheel the piss out of it?

39"s or 40"s are in the plan to go on with the D60s so the little diffs can't stay forever.

Bottom line is, how far would you go before you felt like you were wasting your time and $$$$?
 

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Me personally?

Ever dollar you could put into your diff could be better directed toward your 60's. I'd save every penny if it helps you get to your desired setup sooner. Why dump more than $1k in them when you could buy your 60 for that? If you build what you've got, it's not likely that you'll get the money back out of the 9 and 44...that means you're wasting cash...

If you're gonna do it, do it right but do it right once.

Besides, you want that 60 now don't you?!
 

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yep, if your gonna go bigger with a fullsize you will need the 60's. If ya want some more offroad performance for cheap weld the front 44; as long as the hubs are unlocked you wont know youve done anything to it (not recomended if ya drive in alot of snow or ice). If ya want better gears and ya got an auto consider swappin in an np435, it will do alot more than gears and when ya slap the 60's in you will still be able to use the tranny (unlike gears in the 1/2 tons) 60 can be found with 4.10's and 4.56's so keep all this in mind.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
lilscorpion, what you are saying is what's been holding be back so far. I hate to redundantly drop cash but I also hate my rig being a turd.

psychobilly, I agree about the auto vs. 435 thing. That's probably why I have a NP435 in there now.:D I'm not a fan of autos.

I just bent a tie rod the other night and wasn't even leanin on it that hard. That's just more reason to get a 60 together I guess. For the same reasons you talked about lilscorp I hate to even fix this.
 

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It is tough...my rig has been down for quite some time this go round but only because I did learn at some point...

First I had a '69 CJ5...too small, weak frame, underpowered. I polished that turd by sticking a pair of D44's in it and all of the fixin's. I went all out trying to make it what I wanted it to be but in the end, it was a nice jeep that wasn't what I wanted.

I cut it apart and started over trying to make it into what I wanted it to be. Swapped in a D44/9" hybrid front, a 9" rear and all the goodies. Sold the old 44's for a loss. Tried to boost the power a little but it's a 225...(don't anyone take this personal)...it's a frickin' 225. It'll never be a V8.

That's when I figured it out...too small, weak frame, underpowered...basically not what I wanted from the start but I built it because it was there. I tried to rebuild it because it was what was there...over and over I spent small amounts of money trying to make 'what was there' something that it couldn't ever be.

It didn't cost me a lot of money to get the Dana 60, it cost me a lot of money justifying one. If I had known that I'd spend as much as I did on all of the diffs I built, I could have had a Dana 60 years ago.

All that said, you'd be much better off running a stock Dana 60 until you have the cash to stuff it with goodies than you would dumping even a dollar more into 'what's there'.
 

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Well put lilscorpion.... I totally agree. There is a right way to do things and a wrong way to do things. With 40's in the picture the right way is a dana 60. Run what ya brung until it breaks, and then use the old visa and get a stock 60 and run it. Slowly build it up. IT's what I'm workin on right now.
 

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I had a 78 f150 with the same issues somewhat. It was 1K to get 4.56 front and back with a trutrac up front, already had a detroit in the back which I got screwed for $900 for new 3.50s and the detroit install, then went with the 4.56s. Always ran stock shafts, with 36s and an auto I only broke 1 axle, which was quickly replaced with a $30 junkyard unit. I was very happy with the performance of these axles with 35s and 36s, took 2 trips to little sluice from loon with no problems and weekly runs in the mud, when there was mud, for about 3 years. Then with new suspension I ripped out the brake line and rolled totalling the truck, so now the axles are going under my scout project.

I would run them stock if you are going for 40s then just bild 60s.

Just get some used or cheap 35s for easy wheelin until you can afford the bigger tires and axles, but don't run too much with the auto and stock gears if any other than the street

My .02c
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
lilscorpion said:
It didn't cost me a lot of money to get the Dana 60, it cost me a lot of money justifying one. If I had known that I'd spend as much as I did on all of the diffs I built, I could have had a Dana 60 years ago.
Excellent point. I didn't think about it that way. I suppose thats because I haven't had to spend any money yet on "Dana 60 justification".

Thanks for the input so far guys. It gives me something to think about and some ammo to help temper my patience.
 
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