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Old 03-06-2012, 06:53 PM   #1
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Bought a 97 TJ

Just bought my first jeep as a second car.

1997 Sport 4.0L, 5 speed manual

After reading and then reading some more I have a few questions...

1) I assume it has 3.07 Dana 35 rear axle. How big can I go with the tires before I need lower gearing?

2) Does it make sense to get a new carrier to run 4.10 with the Dana 35? Is it smarter to buy a new Dana 44 for $2000?

3) My roll cage is rusty. Where can I get a new one that is bolt on and the same as the factory?

4) What's a good sound bar to use with a 4 channel 52watt peak head unit?

5) Can I run 31s without a lift and no rub?

6) What's the most suspension lift I can use without replacing slip yoke?

Thanks to all. I'll post pics of the ol' girl when I get home from work. She's green.

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Old 03-06-2012, 07:02 PM   #2
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I have a green 97 sport, I can give you my opinion on a few of your questions.

1. I have 3.07 gears and 31 inch tires and it's bee struggling the past few days to run 65 mph in 5th. We've had wind gusts up to 40mph, so that's why it's struggling. Normally, it isn't too bad, but I have to shift into 4th for any decent hills.

2. I personally wouldn't go any bigger than the 31's I have without regearing.

3. When I upgrade, I'm either going with a ford 8.8, or try to find a dana 44 with 4.10 gears in it already. I plan on swapping out the front for a dana 30 hp out of a cherokee. It's an easy swap.

4. No opinion on the sound bar, I don't even have a radio lol

5. You can run the 31's without a lift, but you might rub a little when it flexes hard.

6. Usually 2 to 2-1/2" before you need to worry about vibrations.


Welcome to the forum, and post up them pics!

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Old 03-06-2012, 07:02 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by l8nitebreakfast
Just bought my first jeep as a second car.

1997 Sport 4.0L, 5 speed manual

After reading and then reading some more I have a few questions...

1) I assume it has 3.07 Dana 35 rear axle. How big can I go with the tires before I need lower gearing?

2) Does it make sense to get a new carrier to run 4.10 with the Dana 35? Is it smarter to buy a new Dana 44 for $2000?

3) My roll cage is rusty. Where can I get a new one that is bolt on and the same as the factory?

4) What's a good sound bar to use with a 4 channel 52watt peak head unit?

5) Can I run 31s without a lift and no rub?

6) What's the most suspension lift I can use without replacing slip yoke?

Thanks to all. I'll post pics of the ol' girl when I get home from work. She's green.
1) I have 31's and 3.07, but it seems a little lacking power. I plan to go 33's with 4.56.

2) I don't know where you got the price of $2000, but I know you can do other popular axle swaps for much less

3)Craigslist, shouldn't be too much

4) your head unit most likely does 17-20watts RMS. that's ok for most sound bars out there. I have all four of my speakers amplified at 60 watts RMS with aftermarket speakers

5) I do, no rub with my rims

6) 2" or less of suspension lift is the safest answer
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Old 03-06-2012, 07:08 PM   #4
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Hey, my post showed up! The forum took a dump right as I was posting and I thought it ate my post
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Old 03-06-2012, 07:13 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by s14sh3r View Post
I have a green 97 sport, I can give you my opinion on a few of your questions.

1. I have 3.07 gears and 31 inch tires and it's bee struggling the past few days to run 65 mph in 5th. We've had wind gusts up to 40mph, so that's why it's struggling. Normally, it isn't too bad, but I have to shift into 4th for any decent hills.

2. I personally wouldn't go any bigger than the 31's I have without regearing.

3. When I upgrade, I'm either going with a ford 8.8, or try to find a dana 44 with 4.10 gears in it already. I plan on swapping out the front for a dana 30 hp out of a cherokee. It's an easy swap.

4. No opinion on the sound bar, I don't even have a radio lol

5. You can run the 31's without a lift, but you might rub a little when it flexes hard.

6. Usually 2 to 2-1/2" before you need to worry about vibrations.


Welcome to the forum, and post up them pics!
Thanks! I think I'm going to run 31s for awhile until I find a decent deal on a new rear axle. Eventually I just want it to be a trail rig but I can't afford to take that step yet. I don't want to put in a 2" suspension and then a 4" inch a year later. I'm so exicted I've wanted one since I was 16. I'm only 27 but that's years and years of wishing! I hope it rains money soon. I want to make this thing a MACK-INE.
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Old 03-06-2012, 07:16 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rpkittle View Post
1) I have 31's and 3.07, but it seems a little lacking power. I plan to go 33's with 4.56.

2) I don't know where you got the price of $2000, but I know you can do other popular axle swaps for much less

3)Craigslist, shouldn't be too much

4) your head unit most likely does 17-20watts RMS. that's ok for most sound bars out there. I have all four of my speakers amplified at 60 watts RMS with aftermarket speakers

5) I do, no rub with my rims

6) 2" or less of suspension lift is the safest answer
3.07 makes me want to barf but with my little tires shes fast on the highway. Thanks for the reply. I eventually want 4.56 or 4.88 as well.
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Old 03-06-2012, 07:18 PM   #7
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Hey, my post showed up! The forum took a dump right as I was posting and I thought it ate my post
while you're in a good mood I saw this in another thread and was laughing to no end...

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Old 03-06-2012, 07:19 PM   #8
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while you're in a good mood I saw this in another thread and was laughing to no end...

lol, that video kills me
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Old 03-06-2012, 07:22 PM   #9
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Your '97 has about a 50:50 chance of having 3.55 gearing as much as it does 3.07.

A used Dana 44 is usually well under $1000 and is how I'd go rather than spending $2000 for a new one. In fact, that's what I did for $800 and it worked out well. The used TJ Dana 44 axle bolted right in and it was solid the entire time I owned it.

For tires no bigger than 33" and without a locker, I would just regear your present axles to 4.10 which runs pretty close to $1100 or so for all parts and labor. If you bought a Dana 44, you'd still have to regear it and the front axle.

Yes you can run 31x10.50 tires with no suspension lift without rubbing on the fenders. At full-turn lock, the inside sidewalls of the front tires may rub on the lower control arms a tad which is permanently fixed by adding a washer to the two steering bump stops as described at Jeep Steer Stop Adjustment

On the rusty rollcage, I would just sand it and repaint it... depending of course how bad it is. A replacement cage could be kinda spendy.

You can go to 3" or maybe 3.5" of suspension lift before a SYE and CV driveshaft is strongly recommended. I always say at 4" you need a SYE and CV driveshaft.

Hope that helps, enjoy your new '97! I sure miss mine which was a really good Jeep!
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Old 03-06-2012, 07:25 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jerry Bransford View Post
Your '97 has about a 50:50 chance of having 3.55 gearing as much as it does 3.07.

A used Dana 44 is usually well under $1000 and is how I'd go rather than spending $2000 for a new one. In fact, that's what I did for $800 and it worked out well. The used TJ Dana 44 axle bolted right in and it was solid the entire time I owned it.

For tires no bigger than 33" and without a locker, I would just regear your present axles to 4.10 which runs pretty close to $1100 or so for all parts and labor. If you bought a Dana 44, you'd still have to regear it and the front axle.

Yes you can run 31x10.50 tires with no suspension lift without rubbing on the fenders. At full-turn lock, the inside sidewalls of the front tires may rub on the lower control arms a tad which is permanently fixed by adding a washer to the two steering bump stops as described at Jeep Steer Stop Adjustment

On the rusty rollcage, I would just sand it and repaint it... depending of course how bad it is. A replacement cage could be kinda spendy.

You can go to 3" or maybe 3.5" of suspension lift before a SYE and CV driveshaft is strongly recommended. I always say at 4" you need a SYE and CV driveshaft.

Hope that helps, enjoy your new '97! I sure miss mine which was a really good Jeep!

I wish I could luck on to one of those good deals on a used 44. You'd think they were made of gold around here
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Old 03-06-2012, 07:31 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jerry Bransford View Post
Your '97 has about a 50:50 chance of having 3.55 gearing as much as it does 3.07.

A used Dana 44 is usually well under $1000 and is how I'd go rather than spending $2000 for a new one. In fact, that's what I did for $800 and it worked out well. The used TJ Dana 44 axle bolted right in and it was solid the entire time I owned it.

For tires no bigger than 33" and without a locker, I would just regear your present axles to 4.10 which runs pretty close to $1100 or so for all parts and labor. If you bought a Dana 44, you'd still have to regear it and the front axle.

Yes you can run 31x10.50 tires with no suspension lift without rubbing on the fenders. At full-turn lock, the inside sidewalls of the front tires may rub on the lower control arms a tad which is permanently fixed by adding a washer to the two steering bump stops as described at Jeep Steer Stop Adjustment

On the rusty rollcage, I would just sand it and repaint it... depending of course how bad it is. A replacement cage could be kinda spendy.

You can go to 3" or maybe 3.5" of suspension lift before a SYE and CV driveshaft is strongly recommended. I always say at 4" you need a SYE and CV driveshaft.

Hope that helps, enjoy your new '97! I sure miss mine which was a really good Jeep!
Thanks JB! I'm worried about that real axle. Not many rocks over here in Florida, just mud and beach sand. I'm going to check the gearing. 3.55 might be ok for my first set of 31s. Eventually she's getting 35s. I just don't want to have to re-gear it twice if possible. 4.56 or 4.88 is where I'm headed.
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Old 03-06-2012, 08:25 PM   #12
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Good plans, go for it. When I said to just regear to 4.10, I didn't mean that to include 4.10 would be good for 33" tires... it's not. For 33" tires and your 4.0L engine and 5-speed transmission, 4.56 is what you'd want.
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Old 03-06-2012, 09:07 PM   #13
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I'm putting in a new shifter boot bezel. My jeep didn't have one. I see how the bezel fits into the center consol but how does the boot attach to the bezel? Anybody know?
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Old 03-06-2012, 11:30 PM   #14
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The base of the boot has a groove molded into it that is pulled over the bezel's edge which holds it in place.
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Old 03-06-2012, 11:54 PM   #15
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It sure does! I got it. New head unit is coming in tomorrow. Needed a working radio.
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Old 03-07-2012, 12:29 AM   #16
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Here she is
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