With the regear in the back new gearing for the front was required. I was lucky enough to find a WranglerForum member who was getting rid of his Dana 30 and it was already upgraded with 4.88 gears, ARB, and Superior Shafts. It was a perfect match for my newly completed rear axle. He shipped it to me via Truck Freight. Luckily my parents run a business with a forklift so shipping was a bit less and the off load was simple.
The superior shafts are considerably larger and should add needed strength to the Dana 30.
The trackbar bracket was a mess. The holes had been wallowed out and redrilled for a larger bolt. I shortcutted the original install and didn't address the problem. That resulted in immediate death wobble at speeds over 35.
Time to fix the problem. It would have been much easier if I had dealt with it before installing the axle. It took me about an hour with an angle grinder cutoff wheel and a dremel with a cutoff wheel for some tight spots and I removed the old bracket. I found some angle iron and used it to fabricate a new bracket. Not bad for an amateur welder.
I enlisted the help of my son to extract the old axle. It didn't take long to get it out of the vehicle.
After a coat of fresh paint the "new" axle went in without too much effort.
The two axle projects took me from Thanksgiving until just after New Years this year. I buttoned everything up just in time for our 4th annual snow run "Snowed Out 4". This year we ended up with an impromptu river run and found ourselves in deep ice crossings.
The new axles and lockers held up well. My plastic fender flairs, winch, and front fenders, not so well!
Long story short, due to a series of poorly timed incidents we spent an extra night (make that a cold -15 night) on the trail. The river flash flooded while I was "parked" where you see me in this photo. We had just hooked up winch lines for the extraction when a 6 inch wall of water came that gradually raised the river 2 feet. The river rising trapped us so we couldn't go up or downstream.
Everyone made it home safe. Just a day late!