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Dana 44/10 bolt tie-rod interchange?

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by dyeager535, Nov 27, 2002.

  1. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    My dad's '74 dana 44 has worn out tie-rods. He has checked prices, the long end alone is over $100. (approx. $125 apparently)

    In looking at the LMC catalog, the '74 setup is *similar* to the 10 bolt setup, except for 3 things: the steering stabilizer mount, the tie rods going underneath instead of on top of the steering arms(? at each wheel) and a slight "offset" or bend in the '74 passenger side tie-rod end.

    If you moved the steering stabilizer mount on the axle tube, would you be able to run the 10 bolt tie-rods on the earlier dana 44 axle, with no problems? Only things that seem to be likely no-go problems are different tie rod "socket" (as GM calls them) sizes, and that offset passenger side tie-rod end.

    I believe you can get an entire 10 bolt tie-rod setup for less than the one end of the early 44 setup.

    BTW, there are apparently 3 setups, but all are either 2 or 3 piece. (either an adjusting tube in the center, and two seperate tie-rods, or just tow tie-rod ends, one long, one short)

    I did a search, I'm surprised this hasn't come up before.
     
  2. imiceman44

    imiceman44 1 ton status

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    well I had the same problem on my D44 and what I did is cut the long tie rod and threaded the end, got a regular short tie rod and adjuster.
    Now my tie rods are both the same and cheap.
    /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     
  3. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    Are you saying that you basically set the drivers side tie-rod up like the drag link, threading the OUTSIDE of the tie-rod where you cut it?

    That seems like a hell of a lot of work, but that makes me curious, what tie-rod application did you end up using? One for a newer K truck, or something totally different?
     
  4. imiceman44

    imiceman44 1 ton status

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    The same as the driver side.
    Now all I need is one spare.
    And the short die is so much cheaper.
    I got the idea from my 2wd, since it's short ones on each side.
    /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     
  5. heavy4x4

    heavy4x4 1/2 ton status

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    To answer the original question - no, that 10 bolt tie rod won't work. It needs to have the same mounting location (above or below the knuckles) as the original one because of the tapered holes.
     
  6. thatK30guy

    thatK30guy 1 ton status Premium Member

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    If the tapers are the same, they may be usable. But....

    Since the older tie rods have that slight curve in them, this allows clearance of the front springs.
    If you installed a regular 10 bolt tie rod on that older axle, the front springs can/will make contact with the top of the 10 bolt tie rod. Unless.....

    If you have moderately lifted springs, say at least 4" or more, you may have enough clearance between the bottom of the leaves and the top of the 10 bolt tie rod on an older D44.
    If you ran stock springs and the 10 bolt tie rod, you will definitely have contact on the springs and rod.
     
  7. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    Yeah no lift, and with the 454/PTO winch on the front, the thing is fairly nose heavy. The springs are hurting as is, so I'm betting if spring clearance is the reason for the "dropped" tie rod end, thats the problem he would have on this truck.

    Thanks for the info, going to have to go another route or just pony up the cash I guess.
     
  8. thatK30guy

    thatK30guy 1 ton status Premium Member

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    You could always find a set of 10 bolt knuckles and swap them onto the D44 and still use the 10 bolt tie rod.

    But then again, it would be easier and cheaper to buy a new tie rod and install it on the D44. At least with a new tie rod, you won't have to worry about the ends getting worn or shot for quite a few years. /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     

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