XJ Dana 44 Axle Buildup
In the first
part of this write-up
, I explained how to prepare the axle for new
brakes and installation on a Jeep Cherokee. Follow along as I continue
Assembly and disc brake conversion
The first step was to have the new
seals and lugs pressed
onto/into the new axles. Rather then mess with this myself, I coughed
up $30 to have a local machine shop do it.
Now here's where the first problem
test fitting all of
the parts acquired for the upgrades, I found out that the hubs on the
new axle shafts were 0.625" wider than the hubs on the stock shafts,
6.75" vs. 6.125. This would not be an issue with drum brakes. However,
the inside diameter of the rotors is only 6.25", so they would not fit
over the new axle shafts. I solved this problem by having the machine
5/16" off the edge of each hub (another $30). This reduced the O.D. of
each hub to 6.125 (same as stock).
Next it was time to break out
the wire wheel attachment for the angle grinder to clean up the mating
surface of the axle end.
Then the new retaining studs were
installed as well as the spacer
plate. The spacer takes the place of the backing plate to keep the
proper preload on the seal.
The axle shafts were then slid into the tube and the
Then a wood block and hammer
was used to gently tap the bearing and seal home.
Next, it was time to install the brackets. The bracket system consists
of a base bracket, which bolts to the axle tube at the retaining plate
and a caliper bracket, which bolts to the base bracket with spacers
in between. The caliper bracket is spaced to the inside of the Jeep
away from the rotor.
This took a lot of trial and error as they can
install to orient the
calipers in a number of different positions and it took some time to
figure out exactly what position would be ideal for brake line and
e-brake cable routing. In addition, finding the correct spacing to use
so that the caliper would fit over the rotor correctly took additional
time and patience.
After everything was correctly
fitted, it was time for final assembly
of the rotors and calipers. Pretty straightforward at this point, since
it had all been pre-fitted in the last step...slip the rotors over the
hub, then install the calipers onto the brackets and bolt them into
axle with the completed upgrades.
After the brakelines retainers
were welded on, the brakelines were run
and the diff cover skid installed...now it was time to bolt this thing
into the Jeep!
Please note that this writeup reflects my experiences only and anyone
using it for reference or as a guide, etc. does so at their own risk.
You may link to this writeup, but you must obtain my permission to
re-post it elsewhere.***