Swapping Scout Axles into a CJ
Submitted by Scott Peterson
I hardly qualify as one who knows much about jeeps, but I recently did a
little work on mine. You know how the saying goes "Only in a jeep", I think it should be "only to
a jeep (must you replace everything)" :)
Ok, here is the basic project: I got a 78 Scout's Dana 44s for $200 and
threw them under my jeep. The rear took about 4 hours total, just torch the
spring perches off and reweld them over about 3/4" each. The front however
was a different story. The spring perches could not be moved over due to
the diff. housing occupying the necessary space. So the old spring hangers
were unbolted on the front and drilled and cut on the rear (of the front
springs). Then rewelded over about an inch and a quarter. Side braces were
put on the front (rear) spring hangers, so a triangle extended from the
frame. The front shackle was just bolted on to a piece of 1/4" angle iron
scrap that I got with the scout front springs (I didnt end up using the
scout's springs). Also, the front drive shaft had to be shorted an inch.
The other real head ache was the steering gear swap. I looked at a few junk
yards before I found on that looked like it would work right as far as
mounts and that wasnt as loose as mine. I ended up with one from an old
olds. delta 88. I didnt get a very good deal on it at $75, but the guy
threw in the pump, hoses, steering shaft, and pitman. The steering shaft
turned out to be most useful. NOTE: (it has been said before) the U-joints
in the steering shaft are also a major culprit in the loose steering equation.
Anyway, the delta 88 steering shaft was cutover and and jep's pounded apart
and the two slid together (using the delta 88's lower section and jeps upper
section). The telescoping (safety) part of the stock jep's was kept (at
full extended length). The completed (fabricated) rod was welded together.
The steering gear itself bolted right in, although it was only a three bolt,
instead of 4.
Overall conclusions: Well, the front was a real pain in the keester. In
retro though maybe I would have tried to see'd how long i could have gone
without breaking the stock dana 30 before going to the scout's big dana 44.
Every tire does stick out about an inch more that stock. Backspacing to
over come this looks impossible, at least with 15s. However, the jeep is
more stable on the road.
Overall, I would say the project isnt for the weak at heart. We used about
3 1/4 lbs. of welding rods and more than one metal cutting disk for the saw.
It was cheap though. New custom axels are a really big expense.
"A conclusion is simply the place where you got tired of thinking."
Last modified Wednesday, 01-Dec-2010 09:23:29 MST
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