Front Axle Swap

Got the front axle installed this past weekend. It was a little easier than the rear axle, mostly because we didn’t have to beat any brake components off the old housing!

The new front was going to get dressed up a bit before going in. I had new unit bearings, so after inserting the axle shafts, got those bolted on. Getting the RCV shafts in wasn’t too hard. I did use axle shaft guides I had picked up from 4 Wheel Parts to help get them into the diff without damaging the seals or dragging any much left inside the housing into the gears.

These are little nylon washers. Two for each side did the trick. They live inside there just fine and have no affect on the axle itself.

I found out that the unit bearings I got had different length wire on the ABS speed sensor. A whole foot shorter than stock. I thought about removing the ones from the Dana 30, but I really didn’t want to spend the time to take the old unit bearings out just to get the sensors. I ordered new ones from Quadratec. Should be here in a couple days. As much flex as my lift has, I have no doubt I will rip these ones out.

After we got the old housing out, we swapped over the tie rod, springs, spring retainers and sway link lower disconnects. The new axle had the drag link flipped, so no need to reuse that.

Putting the new axle back in was also fairly straight forward. Hooking the wheel speed sensors back up, behind the shock tower, blind, sucks by the way.

Once we got the wheels back on, it was obvious I needed an alignment. The wheels were toed out pretty drastically. And the steering wheel was off center. We tried soaking everything in Pb Blaster and using some heat, but no go. Took it up to Goodyear the next day. The tech took 3 hours to get the tie rod and drag link loose. Best $85 I ever spent!

I still need to get the driveshaft lengthened – debating on if I should send it back to Adams or have a local place do it for me.

Lastly, I still need to complete wiring up the lockers to the dash switches.

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