- Article/photo's courtesy of:
Boyce Equipment Dana 60
Let's face it, you want to play hard and you want a Dana 60, that's why you're here. Sure, you could beef up your 1/2 ton Dana 44 or Corporate 10-bolt with chrome-moly axles and maybe even larger u-joints, but would it have the strength of a 1 ton rated 9-3/4" ring gear, increased axle diameter, larger wheel bearings or even a thicker axle housing and tubes, I think we all know the answer to that question.
Our old Dana 44 served it's purpose admirably on mild terrain, but more challenging trails were another story all together. In fact the last few trips to Moab left us stranded on the side of more than one 4+ rated trail with an axle tube full of bent and twisted axle shafts and broken u-joints. Part of any buildup is having an idea on what the final result will be, and our project Blazer is no exception, with larger tires and increased horse power planned for the future the decision was easy - Dana 60.
We had acquired a very used Dana 60 locally that needed a lot of help, and the plan called for a complete rebuild with all new bearings, rotors, seals etc. even a re-gear and installation of an ARB air locker. After adding up the cost of all the parts and factoring in the time we would need to thoroughly rebuild the axle we decided to shop around for a complete rebuilt unit.
Broken Dana 44 U-Joint and Axle Shaft
We placed a call to Boyce Equipment and spoke with Mark Boyce who quickly assured us that he could build us an axle to our exact requirements including our choice of gear ratio and locker setup. Our first question was "yeah, but how long will it take you - two months" much to our surprise, Boyce could have a Dana 60 ready to bolt under our Blazer in approximately 10 business days. With Easter Jeep Safari just weeks away and a very busy schedule on our plate we decided to take advantage of Boyce's 40 + years of experience and ordered up our Dana 60 with a 4.88 gear ratio, 1350 yoke and ARB air locker. The axle arrived a few weeks later banned to a skid with the hubs and rotors wrapped in shrink rap to protect from dust and moisture.
Installing a Dana 60 under a non-lifted full-size GM is a direct bolt up, but there are some issues to take note of especially if the vehicle does have a lift, the following list details the items we encountered and some additions we made while performing the installation.
The caliper ends of our brake lines were smaller than our old Dana 44 so new 34" long stainless steel lines were ordered from AAI Motorsports. (note: Corp 10-bolt and Dana 60 calipers share the same size brake line ends)
Dana 60 spring perches are approximately 3/4" taller than the Corp 10-bolt and Dana 44 spring perches. To keep the same ride height we removed our 1" hill extended shackles and installed ORD's 1/4" heavy duty shackles.
Because our project Blazer has 4" lift springs in the front, we had to install a Warn raised steering block to keep the drag link close to the stock location. (A cross-over steering system will be installed soon that will eliminate the need for this block)
New larger spring plates and u-bolts will be needed to install a Dana 60, we ordered ours from Boyce with the axle.
The tail housing of the Dana 60 is longer that that of a Corp 10-bolt and Dana 44. Because we now have about 5" of lift and the front drive-shaft was never lengthened we found our drive-shaft to be the perfect length.
Before connecting the drag link to the Dana 60 steering arm we had to adjust it out by about an inch which gave us a much better turning radius.
After the install we bled the brakes 4 or 5 times and they were still mushy so we had them power bled at a local 4x4 shop. After the power bleed, we tested the brakes and about went through the windshield, at that point we figured they were good to go.
Because our Blazer will see some serious trails, we decided to beef up the tie-rod by installing a 1-1/2" thick Rock Rod built by Rock Stomper.
To protect our investment from the rocks we called upon Four X Doctor for a Dana 60 differential guard.
We ordered a beefier 1350 yoke to replace the stock 1310 unit. (a combination u-joint was used to connect the drive shaft to the new yoke)
Boyce overlooked installing our larger 1350 yoke but shipped it overnight so we could continue with our project, after it arrived it only took approximately 20 minutes to install. Because our eventual goal is to run 1-ton drive-shafts at a later date, we used a combination u-joint in our front drive-shaft that allowed us to connect to the new 1350 yoke.
Our Dana 60 came ready to be bolted under our Blazer with new rotors and calipers as well as a new tie-rod and rod ends, in fact, when we removed the steering arm we found new king pin bushings as well. We installed a set of Warn premium hubs that we had traded a bumper for a few months earlier, we also ordered a u-bolt kit from Boyce which included the larger u-bolts and spring plates needed to install our axle. After the Dana 60 was installed the only thing left to do was fill the pumpkin with gear oil and we were ready to hit the trails. If you need a complete axle that is ready to be bolted up, then this is the way to go, we were able to order it configured exactly the way we wanted it and have it delivered to our door within weeks.
1310 VS 1350 Yoke
1350 Yoke Installed
Dana 60 Side View
Warn Hubs Installed
Dana 60 Hub/Rotor
What Boyce axles go through:
Steering Arm Removed / King Pin Bushings
Longer Steering Block Studs Installed
Raised Steering Arm in Place
Clamps Used to Hold Steering Arm Down
Raised Steering Block Installed
Four X Doctor Diff Guard
ORD Spring Shackles
SS Brake Lines
SS ARB Line
Internal ARB Line
Ready for Install
Dana 60 with New Tie-Rod
Dana 60 Installed
Rock Rod and Diff Guard
Rock Rod and Diff Guard
Boyce Equipment is a family run business founded more than 40 years ago. They are dealers in the field of military trucks, truck parts and equipment. They carry vehicles ranging from the 1 1/4 ton Dodge, G.M.S., 4 x 4's and 2 1/2 ton REO'S through the GMC 6 x 6's, Kaiser and A.M. General 5 ton, 10 ton and 25 ton 6x6's.
- All axles are first disassembled to the bare housing, then completely cleaned and checked for wear. Any part showing undue wear is replaced.
- Axles are then reassembled with new seals, knuckle boots, brake pads and wheel cylinders.
- At that time or reassembly, the axle can be built with gear changes (limited slip-locking-differentials) custom disk brakes, spring pads/moved, housing modifications with little or no labor charge at the time of purchase.
- Then, all axles are painted primer or black and then packed and shipped. Boyce takes pride in sending you a 100% Guaranteed rebuilt axle.
- Boyce ships your axle to you!
They also offer original equipment power trains and specialize in heavy duty conversions using Dana 44's, 60's, 70's and 2 1/2 ton thru planataries. Boyce features a complete shop, located in Ogden, Utah and offers service and rebuilding on all their equipment. They also deal with heavy-duty civilian equipment including custom made farm tractors, crawlers, winches, generator sets and truck tires. Give them a call to see what they can do for you.
- Boyce Equipment
- 226 West 20th Street
Ogden, Utah 84401
- Phone Number: