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Old February 9th, 2013, 08:57 AM   #1
bighroder
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Default Zr2 sfa swap?? Need in depth advice

Ok I've already got a 1 ton swapped suburban with a cummins going in so please no go d60 comments

This zr2 is my dd/ wheeler I'm ready to get rid of the weak ifs it has a tired 4.3 in it which I have been looking for a small diesel to put in it probably a v3.3 which is about 518 lbs dry 80 hp and somewhere in the 200 ft lbs depending on who you talk to so its not gunna be super heavy and its not gunna be a hotrod.

So what axlee would be best for the situation I'm in? I've heard toyota axles but burfields dont like much weight? I've also heard d 30 but alot of ppl talk down on them don't know if its cause they make to much power or what?

I just want to get some advice before I drop cash, this build is on a tight budget cause I'm still building my other rig. I'm just wondering what you guys would suggest for a very conservative motor build,
Zeth
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Old February 9th, 2013, 09:09 AM   #2
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well if you dont want to go with a 60 then a 44 or a custom 9 inch, wadey on here has a zr2 on a 44 and i think 35s ask him what he thinks of his 44
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Old February 9th, 2013, 11:03 AM   #3
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The axle also needs to have 3. To 3.50 ish gear selection as well
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Old February 9th, 2013, 02:50 PM   #4
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im running a hp44 from a 79 f250 in my zr2 blazer thats sas. you can pick them up for around 150 bucks found mine for 100 dollar bill and most are 3.55 gears or 4.10. another thing to consider is what tcase your gonna run for what side drop. just hit me up ive been threw the sfa on a zr2 so i can tell you all the little tricks from steering to brakes.
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Old February 9th, 2013, 04:48 PM   #5
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leaf/coil?

if you cant do the fab work yourself, sky manufacturing makes a leaf crossmember, and diversfield creations has a zr2 sfa swap "kit" for JEEP axles using bds 4 link xj stuff/custom stuff.
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Old February 9th, 2013, 08:24 PM   #6
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Sorry forgot to mention leaf sprung, I do fab work as a side business mostly barter stuff for work but I'm not worried about the fab just gathering parts such as leafs, axle, (rims if I have to change bolt pattern) then steering components

As far as tcase I plan on running stock auto trans (4 l60 right?) And id like to keep this as stock as possible keep as much of the donor truck as possible for budget reasons, so stock t case
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Old February 9th, 2013, 09:27 PM   #7
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run a ford HP44 for the front and be done. cheap, easy to find parts, and pretty good up to 37s (when running chromos)
will need to run adapters on the rear to convert to the 5-5.5 pattern

ran mine with D44/9" for about 3 years on 37s and was trouble free. wheeled it all over the country.

now I have big boy axles


go to http://zr2usa.com and do tons of reading. we have lefts tons of info there over the years

Last edited by 1TFROT; February 9th, 2013 at 09:31 PM.
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Old February 9th, 2013, 10:38 PM   #8
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I'm only planning on 31 maybe 32s with 355 gears should put me in the sweet spot for the diesel at 65
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Old February 10th, 2013, 12:38 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by in2deep View Post
well if you dont want to go with a 60 then a 44 or a custom 9 inch, wadey on here has a zr2 on a 44 and i think 35s ask him what he thinks of his 44
This. A 44 simply does not belong under something that weighs 5000 lbs. The average starting weight is 4500lb and they only get heavier, mine weighs in at 5260 trail ready with me in it. The extra weight has defiantly shortened bearing life and other things. Which really sucks when itís your dd, like mine was. Right now I'm on my 2nd set of Timkins in a year with Mobil one grease, and they get repacked almost every other oil change. Of course thatís if I was lucky and didn't have to tear down the axle for some other reason.... damn thing is almost as bad as the Ifs was for warn out and broken parts (ball joints, shafts, u-joints, and hubs).

Right now I have a fully polished 44 and I can just now actually go a weekend without breaking. Oh and polished 44 = WAY more $$$ than a stock 60. So my vote would be tons, it may seem over kill right now but trust me its necessary.
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Old February 10th, 2013, 08:57 AM   #10
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This. A 44 simply does not belong under something that weighs 5000 lbs. The average starting weight is 4500lb and they only get heavier, mine weighs in at 5260 trail ready with me in it. The extra weight has defiantly shortened bearing life and other things. Which really sucks when itís your dd, like mine was. Right now I'm on my 2nd set of Timkins in a year with Mobil one grease, and they get repacked almost every other oil change. Of course thatís if I was lucky and didn't have to tear down the axle for some other reason.... damn thing is almost as bad as the Ifs was for warn out and broken parts (ball joints, shafts, u-joints, and hubs).

Right now I have a fully polished 44 and I can just now actually go a weekend without breaking. Oh and polished 44 = WAY more $$$ than a stock 60. So my vote would be tons, it may seem over kill right now but trust me its necessary.
How much wheeling do you do tho? And how hard? If I go I'm just gunna go threw some mud maybe a little at rocks and valleys (I live around the corner) what 44 did you start with? Is it braced? I just dont see me spending another 1100$ for a dana 60 like I spent for my other rig
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Old February 10th, 2013, 09:30 AM   #11
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This. A 44 simply does not belong under something that weighs 5000 lbs. The average starting weight is 4500lb and they only get heavier, mine weighs in at 5260 trail ready with me in it. The extra weight has defiantly shortened bearing life and other things. Which really sucks when itís your dd, like mine was. Right now I'm on my 2nd set of Timkins in a year with Mobil one grease, and they get repacked almost every other oil change. Of course thatís if I was lucky and didn't have to tear down the axle for some other reason.... damn thing is almost as bad as the Ifs was for warn out and broken parts (ball joints, shafts, u-joints, and hubs).

Right now I have a fully polished 44 and I can just now actually go a weekend without breaking. Oh and polished 44 = WAY more $$$ than a stock 60. So my vote would be tons, it may seem over kill right now but trust me its necessary.

I agree with doing a 60 first since I've done both, but you did something wrong with your 44 or you just had bad luck.

I would guess to say that I've put tons more wheelin miles on my 44 than you have so far and probably harder on it as well since I'm not nice to my rig at all.

ran spicer joints all the time with yukon shafts. it was a DD for almost 3 years that way and never had bj issues.

not trying to pick an argument, but just trying to let him know that D44s have lived under heavy rigs for many years. mine was easily 5000#+ at that time as well.

I do believe in doing a 60 first and be done since I've been there done that, but he's looking at running smaller tires and not wheelin too hard. I guess he has to be completely honest with himself about how he will use the rig.

ran this type terrain all the time with 37s on a D44
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Old February 10th, 2013, 10:28 AM   #12
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With 31 or 32 inch tires I really don't see the necessity of a 60...
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Old February 10th, 2013, 10:38 AM   #13
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I agree with doing a 60 first since I've done both, but you did something wrong with your 44 or you just had bad luck.

I would guess to say that I've put tons more wheelin miles on my 44 than you have so far and probably harder on it as well since I'm not nice to my rig at all.

ran spicer joints all the time with yukon shafts. it was a DD for almost 3 years that way and never had bj issues.

not trying to pick an argument, but just trying to let him know that D44s have lived under heavy rigs for many years. mine was easily 5000#+ at that time as well.

I do believe in doing a 60 first and be done since I've been there done that, but he's looking at running smaller tires and not wheelin too hard. I guess he has to be completely honest with himself about how he will use the rig.

ran this type terrain all the time with 37s on a D44
Wade beats on his rig more than anyone I know!

Hey Justin do you have any straight body panels left??
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Old February 10th, 2013, 10:57 AM   #14
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I know Justin's build pretty well considering we (zr2usa) watched/helped with it starting a little over a year ago.

again, not trying to start anything, but just trying to help show the OP the D44 will be fine for what he is using it for. he needs to try and figure out the future of how he will use it and try and build it once. i went through the D44 phase and wish I went with the d60 first only to save money. I got bit by the bug pretty bad and love wheelin hard.

Last edited by 1TFROT; February 10th, 2013 at 11:04 AM.
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Old February 10th, 2013, 11:48 AM   #15
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Nice rig, I'm in the process of finding another Zr2 as they are my fav versions of the Blazer!
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Old February 10th, 2013, 11:52 AM   #16
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to keep it on the cheap 44 be your best bet the main thing to look for is flat top knuckles on the axle. pretty common for the 78-79s so you can get it machined for a steering arm. if your only wanting to run the smaller tires find you a set of stock jeep wagoneer springs for the front. the other thing need to look at your tcase depending what year it is if the front output is a slip yoke or if its a fixed. if its a slip just need to find a np231c from a early 90 s10 or blazer and swap the guts and jb conversion makes a awsome sye for the rear output. do you plan on moving your front axle forward at all?

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Old February 10th, 2013, 12:05 PM   #17
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to keep it on the cheap 44 be your best bet the main thing to look for is flat top knuckles on the axle. pretty common for the 78-79s so you can get it machined for a steering arm. if your only wanting to run the smaller tires find you a set of stock jeep wagoneer springs for the front. the other thing need to look at your tcase depending what year it is if the front output is a slip yoke or if its a fixed. if its a slip just need to find a np231c from a early 90 s10 or blazer and swap the guts and jb conversion makes a awsome sye for the rear output. do you plan on moving your front axle forward at all?
I swapped the 231 internals into my 233 so I had a fixed yoke on the front, but no reason to do the sye for the rear. never did mine and no issues. it can't hurt, but money can be spent elsewhere.

no leafs here. ran ZJ coils on mine.

seriously, get to zr2usa if you have not already. all of our info is there.
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Old February 10th, 2013, 12:13 PM   #18
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ya zr2usa is where i got all my info for my build from just read a few build threads and should have all the info you need
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Old February 10th, 2013, 12:48 PM   #19
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How much wheeling do you do tho? And how hard? If I go I'm just gunna go threw some mud maybe a little at rocks and valleys (I live around the corner) what 44 did you start with? Is it braced? I just dont see me spending another 1100$ for a dana 60 like I spent for my other rig
I have a 79 F150 heavy half. So its a full width high pinion axle with 1/2" thick axle tubes. Now it has rcv's, and slugs just to keep it together.

Don't get me wrong I do wheel pretty hard, however most of my breaks occur under light wheeling . My first shaft and ball joints went while crawling on flat ground with the motor just off idle. I lost a set of lock outs on a 2 track in the snow. I broke another lock out and shaft just while trying to get out of a ditch in the winter. And I broke another shaft in the dunes, which I didn't even know was possible.

As stated, you might get lucky and you may not.
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Old February 10th, 2013, 12:59 PM   #20
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I swapped the 231 internals into my 233 so I had a fixed yoke on the front, but no reason to do the sye for the rear. never did mine and no issues. it can't hurt, but money can be spent elsewhere.

no leafs here. ran ZJ coils on mine.

seriously, get to zr2usa if you have not already. all of our info is there.
An easier front output to find is a 231J, just swap out the outputs and use a 231J front output seal on your case. That way you can run jeep cv shafts. I also ran with the stock rear ds for a long time.
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