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Dana 44 worth the swap?

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by Tall_Girl, Dec 20, 2001.

  1. Tall_Girl

    Tall_Girl Registered Member

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    Ok. I'm going to run a 12bolt in the back. But I'm a little confused about the front. I have the 10bolt. Now on one hand, I've been told that it is going to hold up 35's. On the other I've been told it will not.

    Bur I need a 6lug axle so I looked into the Dana44. Confused again. I read something about somebody from ORD saying that a Dana44 is not stronger then a 10bolt. Other people tell me it is way stronger.

    What is the way to go for me. And do not say Dana60, I can't get the rims in this country.

    XXX
    Lana

    6'5" tall Dutch girl, just bought a 88 K5, and about to dump the jeep.
     
  2. four_by_ken

    four_by_ken 1/2 ton status

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    The 10 bolt will hold up just fine to 35s, and no the Dana 44 is not any stronger. Basically the same axle assembly.

    Ken H.


    '86 K5 in parts
    1-ton 44 TSLs
    454 BBC, 350 trans, 205 transfer
    Rust free in Michigan!
     
  3. heaj1

    heaj1 Registered Member

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    IMO, about the only thing weaker than a 10 bolt is IFS (half ton). I would think the D44 is a little stronger. As far a what would work for you, it depends on your intended usage. If you are going 35's and just playing on the trails, little or no mud, and No crawling, the D44 will probably suffice, heck maybe even the 10 bolt if it's more of a daily driver (unlocked). Clear as mud? haha. Hope this helps.

    Jamie

    Swimming like a rock, Slinging like a stock, but not for long!
     
  4. 6.2Blazer

    6.2Blazer 1/2 ton status

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    You are not really gaining any strength between the 10-bolt and Dana 44. The only reason I would go to the trouble is if the 12-bolt rear has different gears than the current 10-bolt front, in that case it could be cheaper and easier to swap in a complete front axle like a 44 that has matching gears.

    One other problem with the 44's is that they have not been used by Chevy/GMC since the late-70's, so junkyard replacement parts are getting scarce.
     
  5. BadDog

    BadDog SOL Staff Member Super Moderator Author

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    I agree that the C10 and D44 are essentially the same as far as strength. Keep the C10. Even if you swap axles to match gearing in the rear C12, I would choose a C10 if given the option. As already mentioned, the C10 is very common and easier to find parts for.

    As for holding up with 35s, I ran a mildly built 454 in a 75 K5 on 35" BFGs in rocks, mud, and everything in between. No problems. Just need to know when to show some restraint, especially when the wheels are turned.

    Russ

    85 K30 CUCV, 350 TBI, TH400, 205, D60/C14, 4.56 Locked
    Some day: 4" lift, 44" tires, massive cutting, shorter wb and rear overhang.
     
  6. DesertDueler

    DesertDueler 1/2 ton status

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    They are the same strength for the 1 reason is they use the same axle u-joints. Thats what breaks first in a front axle. The only ones that are stronger are like you said a dana 60 or bigger. Keep the 10 bolt. I havent had a problem with the 10 bolt in the front of my Jimmy and it is locked and all I do is rock crawl. As said before when out wheeling go easy on the skinny pedal, but as you use to drive a jeep you should know those axles really sucked, so if you didnt break those you should be fine with your combo 12 bolt rear 10 bolt front.

    86Jimmy 4"&35"MTRs,87 burb 4"&33"MT,69Firebird w/525 hp,and 70GTO live in PHX,AZ<a target="_blank" href=http://www.geocities.com/modifierperformance>My vehicles</a>
     
  7. four_by_ken

    four_by_ken 1/2 ton status

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    HEAJ1

    And why is a Dana 44 stronger? They are not. Essentially the same as a 10 bolt. Plus as others have mentioned, 10 bolt parts are easier to find. Even with that said, there is a lot that is interchangealbe between the two.

    Ken H.


    '86 K5 in parts
    1-ton 44 TSLs
    454 BBC, 350 trans, 205 transfer
    Rust free in Michigan!
     
  8. Executioner

    Executioner 1/2 ton status

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    Have you looked into a 12 Bolt front, it would have a lot of the same parts, as the rear !
    So if you carry some spare parts, they can fit the front, or the rear 12 bolt.
    Think about it.
    Good luck
     
  9. DesertDueler

    DesertDueler 1/2 ton status

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    Ok executioner, you dont need to confuse the new people. And if you have a factory 12 bolt front I would like to see it.

    86Jimmy 4"&35"MTRs,87 burb 4"&33"MT,69Firebird w/525 hp,and 70GTO live in PHX,AZ<a target="_blank" href=http://www.geocities.com/modifierperformance>My vehicles</a>
     
  10. wayne

    wayne 3/4 ton status

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    Executioner when are you going to realize that GM never made a factory 12 bolt front and stop giving misinformation about it. It is getting old and if you can't give the correct advice don't give any at all. I think after having pictures posted of your front axle and enough people telling you what it is by now you would have figured it out. Here is a person looking for good info to help her make a decision and you want to through garbage out for her. I don't think she wants to look like a fool looking for an axle that GM never made.
    Now to the ? at hand. You will not gain going to a Dana 44 unless the gears are the same as the 12 bolt you plan on useing. Also if you switch to a Dana 44 from a 10 bolt the brake lines are different. I think you can use the 10 bolt calipers on the Dana 44 with no problem and some of the guys here might know for sure. If you are not planning to go any bigger then 35's and don't put a locker in the 10 bolt should hold up well.

    See <a target="_blank" href=http://coloradok5.com/gallery/Waynes-Toy>Project Mighty Mouse</a> here.
    <font color=blue>Wayne<font color=blue>
    <font color=blue>Happy Trails<font color=blue>
     
  11. We have been asking for a picture of this phantom 12b front for a year now.
    Give us the "facts" Exie
    Fact=Picture

    '84 K5

    Chevy in my blood.
     
  12. wayne

    wayne 3/4 ton status

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    I had posted pics a few weeks ago. And everybody agreed it looked like a Dana 44.

    See <a target="_blank" href=http://coloradok5.com/gallery/Waynes-Toy>Project Mighty Mouse</a> here.
    <font color=blue>Wayne<font color=blue>
    <font color=blue>Happy Trails<font color=blue>
     
  13. Executioner

    Executioner 1/2 ton status

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    Looks can be deciveing !
     
  14. Tall_Girl

    Tall_Girl Registered Member

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    Uh, I thought those 12bolt fronts did not exsist! Or do they? I don't even think you could get gears for that.

    XXX
    Lana

    6'5" tall Dutch girl, just bought a 88 K5, and about to dump the jeep.
     
  15. jwduke

    jwduke 1/2 ton status

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    Exie has a 12 bolt in the front, he just can't figure out why he can't turn to get out of his driveway! LOL!!!

    1 ton '87 Chevy SWB in the making!
     
  16. heaj1

    heaj1 Registered Member

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    And why is a Dana 44 stronger? They are not. Essentially the same as a 10 bolt. Plus as others have mentioned, 10 bolt parts are easier to find. Even with that said, there is a lot that is interchangealbe between the two.

    Ken H.


    Ken, I believe you are correct. I thought (there I go again) the 44 was a tad stronger, but, could be (and probably am) mistaken. I knew there were no major difference. I apologize for spouting off at the ..umm....Fingers?, without doing my homework. Hope no harm was done. I will try doing more homework before offering advice in the future.

    Thanks,
    Jamie

    Swimming like a rock, Slinging like a stock, but not for long!
     
  17. BadDog

    BadDog SOL Staff Member Super Moderator Author

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    In some ways the D44 is stronger, in some ways the C10 is. However, those points become moot because they essentially have the same weakest points. Primarily the knuckle u-joint.

    Ken wasn't jumping on you, just correcting "for the record". Honestly, if it weren't for all the great knowledgeable people on here, I would feel LESS confident posting. As it is, I know that if I make a mistake, someone will correct it (as has happened on several occasions). I would much prefer being corrected as opposed to giving someone bad advise that caused them harm. We all have bad info, bad days, misconceptions, confusion, etc...

    As for Executioner and his 12 bolt front, that is a long running joke here. He is referring to the 12 bolts holding a D44 ring to the carrier. This is what the designations used on Corp axles (10, 12, 14 bolt) are actually based on, bolts holding the ring to the carrier. It just happens to be the same as the number of bolts in the diff cover. So, Exe says he has a 12 bolt front axle and gets everyone riled up because there is no C12 front. He's just jerking everyone around a little bit by applying the same designation to the Dana...

    Russ

    85 K30 CUCV, 350 TBI, TH400, 205, D60/C14, 4.56 Locked
    Some day: 4" lift, 44" tires, massive cutting, shorter wb and rear overhang.
     
  18. heaj1

    heaj1 Registered Member

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    Thanks Russ. I didn't really take it too hard but I do understand that when a "newbie" gets too zealous that the "old timers" (knowledge - not age) tend to try and settle em down. Sometimes the only way to effectively do that is to jump on em and "break their spirit" if you will. I am fairly new to axle tech so I was basically bowing and giving right of way to Ken. I have read a ton of his previous posts and Im pretty confident that he know his sh1t. No harm no Foul! Lets go out and get muddy. hehe.

    Jamie

    Swimming like a rock, Slinging like a stock, but not for long!
     
  19. heaj1

    heaj1 Registered Member

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    BTW that executioner thing is pretty damn funny...Why wont this thing turn?....LMAO.

    Jamie

    Swimming like a rock, Slinging like a stock, but not for long!
     
  20. Tall_Girl

    Tall_Girl Registered Member

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    Hmm. ok. But let's say I want to have a locker in the front and go with 35's? Will the replacement axles from ORD (Chrome moly) hold that up? Or am I pushing my luck then?

    XXX
    Lana

    6'5" tall Dutch girl, just bought a 88 K5, and about to dump the jeep.
     

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