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Old 02-14-2012, 06:23 PM   #1
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Dana 30 4340 axles, is there a difference?

I'm doing a TON of upgrades to my Jeep right now and have a question about the upgraded Dana 30 axles. After much reading and research from this forum, I've decided to go with the 27 spline ARB locker in the Dana 30 and upgrade my front shafts. I made this decision based on several references to the weak point in the 27 spline front axles are the shafts themselves, not necessarily the spline count. There are several 4340 chromoly Dana 30 kits available from different vendors with different prices. For instance, I can purchase a Yukon 4340 kit with Splicer 760 joints for around $600 (local off road shop) with a lifetime warranty, or order a Nitro 4340 with Splicer 760 kit for $475 from East Coast Gear Supply with a listed 10 year warranty. I know it's only a $125 difference, but when your already up to several thousand in pending upgrades at the off road shop, every little bit helps! I have read opinions on other forums about American standard 4340 metal and imported 4340 metal not being the same. I know Yukon is made in America but I don't know about Nitro. I just know ECGS doesn't sell crappy products. I know several companies can get their 4340 from big name companies in the US and put their finishing touches on it. I would LOVE to save money here, is there a difference?
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Old 02-14-2012, 08:08 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by Boone View Post
I know Yukon is made in America...
I am about 99% sure all of Yukon's products are manufacturered overseas. I heard from a usually quite reliable source it is probably India. They do assembly here but I don't think any of their products are actually manufactured here. Did you price Superior Axle's Evolution Series axle shafts?

Hardened alloy 27 spline Dana 30 shafts will hold up very well to 35" tires and a locker.

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Old 02-14-2012, 09:07 PM   #3
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I am about 99% sure all of Yukon's products are manufacturered overseas. I heard from a usually quite reliable source it is probably India. They do assembly here but I don't think any of their products are actually manufactured here. Did you price Superior Axle's Evolution Series axle shafts?

Hardened alloy 27 spline Dana 30 shafts will hold up very well to 35" tires and a locker.
I haven't looked yet but I will check them out. I didn't know about the Yukon products. I always thought they were manufactured here. Thanks Mr Bransford once again for some expert insight!
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Old 02-14-2012, 09:30 PM   #4
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What made you decide to go with the upgraded 27 spline instead of the upgraded 30 spline?
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Old 02-14-2012, 10:10 PM   #5
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What made you decide to go with the upgraded 27 spline instead of the upgraded 30 spline?
I read several threads concerning the upgrade options, and several points were made that the weak point of the axles are the axles themselves not the splines. Another selling point was the fact that if you did have the upgraded 27 spline axles and you managed to break one, you can replace it with a stock 27 spline axle to get home. (Not to mention I found a new ARB locker on eBay for a killer price.)
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Old 02-15-2012, 12:32 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Boone View Post
I read several threads concerning the upgrade options, and several points were made that the weak point of the axles are the axles themselves not the splines. Another selling point was the fact that if you did have the upgraded 27 spline axles and you managed to break one, you can replace it with a stock 27 spline axle to get home. (Not to mention I found a new ARB locker on eBay for a killer price.)
Not to mention that on the front axle, alloy 27 spline axle shafts will hold up to pretty much anything 35" tires and a locker can hand them. At least mine did that I installed into my previous TJ.
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Old 02-15-2012, 01:05 AM   #7
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What made you decide to go with the upgraded 27 spline instead of the upgraded 30 spline?
As boone stated, having a set of backups seems very appealing. I recently put an airlocker in my front diff, and I was feeling a little down about the fact that I didnt have money at the time to "upgrade" to 30 splines. After seeing a post about it a week or so ago though, having back up axles (even if they are the weaker factory ones) sounds very comforting to me. My buyers remorse is completely gone now and I would make the same decision over again if I had to.
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Old 02-16-2012, 03:17 AM   #8
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Good point. Unfortunately (yet at the same time im very fortunate just not in this case) my grandpa handed me down his TJ for my first car when he bought a new Rubi. It came with the 30 splines and ARB rear locker. Along with AEV wheels, Rancho Lift, tummy tuck, etc. and only 12k miles! im one lucky sperm
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Old 04-28-2016, 09:15 PM   #9
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Holy thread revival!

OK, now that that's out of the way. I am only replying because this thread has some misinformation in it I wanted to resolve. I actually was just googling to find the stock grade the dana 30 axles used for their steel on the shafts for forging since I have a bunch laying around broken. As I come across threads newbs will take as doctrine, I figured I would straighten this out sooner that I find as a major result. This was number 2 enlarged on my Google search.

First off, if your getting a carrier, get a 30 spline. I know this is useless to the OP if they even have the jeep anymore. Why carry spares if you upgrade the axle? Also, you don't need axles to drive home, just the ends to hold the unit bearing together. 4340 shouldn't break with 35's and the stock motor locked. If you upgrade the motor, ratios, etc, then they will. So no spares needed. Now I know when you build a motor the D30 goes out for something stronger to handle the torque. I've already done it.

What bothers me is people saying the 30 spline is hardly stronger. 30 spline is way way stronger than 27. I can't remember the specs off of the top of my head, but I have the books on Dana as well as many other axles I mess with that give in detail. When I first read it I was shocked at the difference.

With all the money it takes to get the carrier and axles, spend the extra and get the 30 spline if you're intent on polishing a turd. There's more than one way to break an axle. Splines are a weak point.

In reality though, I would ruin a stock axle 44 and spend less before building a 30 again. The failure points on the axle are the unit bearings. They suck. I lost count on how many I have broken. They make better use as tire carrier hinges than they do hubs! I have a Wagoneer front now with the full spindles and they are night and day comparison. You also have more choices on all aftermarket stuff.and can also find it used easier. Larger tubes, housing, gears, etc. In comparison the 30 sucks. With a 62" wms, it goes right in almost any Wrangler easy. Upgrade those eventually, and the only thing breaking them is a built v8 or way oversized tires.

I would bet the OP never broke the 27 spline though. Just saying, if your going to do a carrier upgrade and axles too, get the latest spline count, even if you have to wait an extra 6 months. That goes for any axle.

I go way far out with 4x4, but I can only think of a very small handful of places I could get stuck with a broken front where getting out to drive home would be difficult. Especially if I had friends with me. If you're wheeling that hard, you already have a bunch of gear and crap in the jeep. Snatchblocks, Jack, should have u joints, straps, shackles, etc. Don't waste space and weight with axles you won't need even if you do get a 27 spline.

Most likely thing to happen is they will break something in your jeep flying through the air.
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Old 04-29-2016, 01:27 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OverkillYJ View Post
Holy thread revival!

OK, now that that's out of the way. I am only replying because this thread has some misinformation in it I wanted to resolve. I actually was just googling to find the stock grade the dana 30 axles used for their steel on the shafts for forging since I have a bunch laying around broken. As I come across threads newbs will take as doctrine, I figured I would straighten this out sooner that I find as a major result. This was number 2 enlarged on my Google search.

First off, if your getting a carrier, get a 30 spline. I know this is useless to the OP if they even have the jeep anymore. Why carry spares if you upgrade the axle? Also, you don't need axles to drive home, just the ends to hold the unit bearing together. 4340 shouldn't break with 35's and the stock motor locked. If you upgrade the motor, ratios, etc, then they will. So no spares needed. Now I know when you build a motor the D30 goes out for something stronger to handle the torque. I've already done it.

What bothers me is people saying the 30 spline is hardly stronger. 30 spline is way way stronger than 27. I can't remember the specs off of the top of my head, but I have the books on Dana as well as many other axles I mess with that give in detail. When I first read it I was shocked at the difference.

With all the money it takes to get the carrier and axles, spend the extra and get the 30 spline if you're intent on polishing a turd. There's more than one way to break an axle. Splines are a weak point.

In reality though, I would ruin a stock axle 44 and spend less before building a 30 again. The failure points on the axle are the unit bearings. They suck. I lost count on how many I have broken. They make better use as tire carrier hinges than they do hubs! I have a Wagoneer front now with the full spindles and they are night and day comparison. You also have more choices on all aftermarket stuff.and can also find it used easier. Larger tubes, housing, gears, etc. In comparison the 30 sucks. With a 62" wms, it goes right in almost any Wrangler easy. Upgrade those eventually, and the only thing breaking them is a built v8 or way oversized tires.

I would bet the OP never broke the 27 spline though. Just saying, if your going to do a carrier upgrade and axles too, get the latest spline count, even if you have to wait an extra 6 months. That goes for any axle.

I go way far out with 4x4, but I can only think of a very small handful of places I could get stuck with a broken front where getting out to drive home would be difficult. Especially if I had friends with me. If you're wheeling that hard, you already have a bunch of gear and crap in the jeep. Snatchblocks, Jack, should have u joints, straps, shackles, etc. Don't waste space and weight with axles you won't need even if you do get a 27 spline.

Most likely thing to happen is they will break something in your jeep flying through the air.
Did you figure out the grade of the steel? If not I believe they use 1040 or 1050 steel.
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Old 05-01-2016, 10:00 AM   #11
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Thanks. You are correct. They are 1040. Found it after this post. Will work for San Mai, just not a blade edge itself. I have a small pile of broken 30 axles.

I forgot to mention the place I have broken them the most with lockers are at the u joint. I actually like the axles now with smaller axle u joints over the larger ones. When I break a large one, it's enough to stretch out the little ears on the axle end making it unusable because the new u joint never goes in tight again. The little ones I have never seen do that.

Anyone with earlier stock small axles that are looking to swap to the 95 or tj/xj shafts I would say don't waste your money on stock. Get 4340. That weaker point of failure at the smaller u joint is actually a nice failsafe. I have broken them a lot wheeling in the snow with the front locked. When it goes from snow to a good grip on one side quickly it's what destroys the u joints the fastest. Especially if you have any speed or are making a hard turn. 4340 will last through many more severe u joint failures before slowly getting stretched.
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Old 05-01-2016, 11:33 AM   #12
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I forgot to mention the place I have broken them the most with lockers are at the u joint. I actually like the axles now with smaller axle u joints over the larger ones. When I break a large one, it's enough to stretch out the little ears on the axle end making it unusable because the new u joint never goes in tight again. The little ones I have never seen do that.
The axle shaft ears stretch first then they let go of the u-joint which then spins and breaks. The u-joint isn't breaking first. Replacing the front axle shafts with a good aftermarket 4340 shaft typically stops most u-joint breakages.

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