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6 to 8 lug conversion

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by 83PJW, Aug 19, 2002.

  1. 83PJW

    83PJW 1/2 ton status

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    I know there is an article on the 6 to 8 lug conversion in the tech section, but i have one question maybe someone can help me out. It says that it will show you how to convert the dana44 6 lug to an eight, but is it also the same for a gm ten bolt and will i need any special parts that were not listed in the article. if anyone has a helpful hint please give me a reply before i do this job.
     
  2. chulisohombre

    chulisohombre 1/2 ton status

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    if you get everything from the knuckle out you should be fine.and you can reuse your 10 bolt calipers.
     
  3. BigOrange90Jimmy

    BigOrange90Jimmy 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    is it knuckle out or can you use the backing plates on either?
     
  4. thatK30guy

    thatK30guy 1 ton status Premium Member

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    Here, read this:

    GM has two different types of axles: the "first design" and the "second design". For those who dont know the difference, the "first" goes from 73-76. The "second" goes from 77 to 91. Some differences are:

    1. Backing plates are ALL diffferent. Both 1/2 and 3/4 ton for both designs are NOT the same thing. 3/4 tons are larger diameter than the 1/2 tons. There are currently 6 different types of backing plates. The 1/2 ton has the 73-76, 77-80, and 81-91. 3/4 ton is the same years, but only bigger around.

    2. Bearing hub and rotors are different. There are 4 types. 73-76 use a smaller wheel bearing on both the 1/2 and 3/4 ton. The 1/2 ton bearing hub is an internal drive. 3/4 tons were available in both the internal and external drives. 77 and newer bearing hubs are the same size wheel bearing. 1/2 and 3/4 tons are all internal drives. The differences in the rotor diameter is the fact that the 3/4 tons are larger around than the 1/2 tons. This is why the backing plates are larger around than the 1/2 tons. If you use a 1/2 ton backing plate on a 3/4 ton rotor, the caliper will NOT even align up with the bolts. If the 1/2 ton rotor is used with the 3/4 ton backing plates, the caliper will NOT have enough pad contact with the rotor.

    3. Spindles. 73-76 are one type only. They are "first design" small bearings. 1/2 and 3/4 ton spindles are interchangable. 77-91 spindles are "second design" and all interchangable between 1/2 and 3/4 tons. You cannot use a first design spindle with a second design bearing hub & rotor. The hub will wobble in place. If the second design spindle is used with a first design bearing hub, the hub will not even go on at all.

    4. D44 and 10B axle shafts are not interchangable. The D44 shafts measure: right - 36.13"
    left - 18.31"
    10B shafts measure: right - 35.46"
    left - 19.15"

    5. Steering knuckles. D44's have the infamous "flat top" knuckles on the passenger side. These are good for the crossover steering for where the steering arm is mounted on top of the knuckle after machine work and drilling has been done. The 10B knuckles have NO flat surface whatsoever. Machine work would be excessive to make the crossover work and therefore would be easier and cheaper to locate the correct knuckle off a D44.

    All in all, when doing a swap like this, try to round up the parts off one truck to use on the other. Such parts to swap over would be: backing plates, spindles, bearing hub & rotors, and if desired for crossover steering, the knuckles.

    The knuckles do NOT need to be changed if you do not plan on the crossover steering.

    It all boils down to this: D44 and 10B parts ARE interchangable from the knuckles out. Anything else from the knuckles in is NOT interchangable.

    ALL calipers on both D44 and 10B are compatible with either axle. Even the first and second design axles are compatible with BOTH 1/2 and 3/4 ton calipers. So, whatever swap you plan on doing, you can retain your stock calipers.
    When stepping up to the big D60, this is a whole different ball game. Nothing is interchangable from the D44 and 10B to the D60.
     
  5. 83PJW

    83PJW 1/2 ton status

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    hey that k30 guy thanks a bunch. i just picked up the whole dana44 8 lug. So i will just change everything from the knuckels out. will i also need to change the outer part of the axel shaft on both sides since you say that the axels are not interchangable?will that work?
     
  6. BigOrange90Jimmy

    BigOrange90Jimmy 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    that's THE BEST explanation i've ever seen. bookmark and add as a favorite so you can review later in life!
     
  7. 83PJW

    83PJW 1/2 ton status

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    i have a whole dana 44 with everything on it. so im just going to use the whole thing knuckles out.
     
  8. thatK30guy

    thatK30guy 1 ton status Premium Member

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    The shafts I was talking about were the inner shafts.

    You can use the short outer stub shafts on all the years as they are the same thing. /forums/images/icons/wink.gif
     
  9. 83PJW

    83PJW 1/2 ton status

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    ok so i wont have to mess with my axles at all then?
     
  10. thatK30guy

    thatK30guy 1 ton status Premium Member

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    As long as they are the axles that were in the housing/differential, you will be ok.

    May want to pull them to check out the splines and u-joints. Easier to check them while everything will be apart. /forums/images/icons/wink.gif
     
  11. chulisohombre

    chulisohombre 1/2 ton status

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    sorry bout the confution.you can use your knuckle,but everything else as to be changed from the donor axle.so spindles backing plates hubs and bearings all have to be changed.ony thing you can reuse is the knuckles and calipers
     

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