Re: Tj/Xj/Yj D30 w/D44 Knuckles
This project seems worth most if not all the effort required to obtain the resulting strength and benefits of serviceable front wheel bearings.
However, I'm uncertain if the point regarding stronger ball joints is relevant. The OE HP D30 weak points are 1) axle tube wall thickness and 2) control arm mounting brackets on axle. Jeepaholic solved the tube issue. I have not heard of ball joint issues with the OE Xj HP D30 to know if this is an issue or not. My use off road use will always be mild so I am not an authority in this area. Can anyone comment?
I like this axle a lot but, would not want to choose this route if the end result was an axle with greater width than my Xj's. I am also interested in the outer D44 knuckles that are available from Reid Racing. They are not inexpensive but are a less involved solution for much of these same benefits. Does anyone know which of these two solutions is stronger? We have to make sure we are comparing apples to apples...
Lockouts - agreed
Serviceable bearings - the ticket!
Bigger brakes - agreed
Stronger ball joints - uncertain?
High steer for less $$$ - Many Xj folks I talk to indicate this is unnecessary; need could be usage dependent.
Parts availability - agreed
Added tube strength (if you sleeve the whole tube) - agreed
Added axle width - Can we prevent this if we choose to build this axle?
Welding required (for some) - You can always pay to have this done.
Wheel bolt pattern changes - Only a potential con; no more negative.
Axle Part Cost is Excellent!
$60 for a waggy 44 (flat tops, spindles, brakes)
$50 for ford hubs and rotors
$100 for the XJ 30
-$10 for the cj 30 (tonka?)
Plus high steer arms and machining for ~$200. The discussions I have held with people regarding this issue is that it is not necessary. However, may usage is mild; no rocks, etc. My limits may be far less than need concern others.
I am also concerned regarding the simplicity this posting suggests. Meaning, how much more work is involved than is actually presented? For example, since the D30 lacks outer shaft bearings we need not be concerned regarding the alignment of the finished housing with regard to the shaft/bearing rotation axis. Is everything presented here or, does it get more complicated than this?