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Old 04-24-2013, 08:02 PM   #1
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Running 35"s properly

I'm wanting to make the jump up to 35"s but im having a bit of trouble deciding which direction to take. However I'm wanting to do it the right way, not half ass do it. I know this has been asked alot, I've read up alot about it, but most threads I came across no one really wanted to do it right, they were basically just doing it for looks, which I'm not, I'm gonna be wheeling the crap out of it lol but it's also my daily driver so it needs to hold up.

I found a ford 8.8 to put under my currently complete stock 2000 4.0 auto. But I've been told I would be better off to save my money and effort and do something else. But I'm not sure what to do... I know I can't really stick with my stock Dana 35, that's a disaster waiting to happen. My original plan was to just put the 8.8 in and regear to 4.88s and put a locker in the front and a limited slip in the rear and do all new brakes and call it done as far as the axles go.

One direction I thought about goin was a 4in lift, and maybe a 1.25" bl and 1" mml. The other direction was either a 3in or 3.5in lift and metalcloak arched tube fenders.

Next moth is when I'm gonna attempt to start this "project" so untill then I got alot to decide on.

Any opinions/help are welcome and greatly appreciated! I'm still fairly new to jeeps, haven't even owned it a year yet lol. So what all does it exactly take to run 35"s properly? I want to make sure I don't miss anything. Also is the 8.8 the right way to go? Or should I be looking for something else?

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Old 04-24-2013, 08:06 PM   #2
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Without spending an hour typing up stuff, here is the most helpful link I could find. Read up and report back with any questions you have or clarifications you need.
I want to run 35's on my TJ - JeepForum.com

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Old 04-24-2013, 11:34 PM   #3
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i have a 2000, manual, 4.0 with 35s. I have a d44 with a detroit locker coming and gears and carrier to match the front. I havent done anything about the breaks or drag link like that link was talking about that 5spdftw posted. Also I've read that some stock driveshafts will work on the d44 and others had to get a SYE or their stock shortened. Hope all goes well for ya.
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Old 04-25-2013, 05:14 AM   #4
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Some quick help, thanks!!

Right now my biggest issue is wether or not to go ahead and get this ford 8.8. Is it worth it? Or should I go for something different? I've read the whole 8.8 thread on here, and that's what practically sold me on it, but I'm just wanting to make sure it's the right way to go. Also, I'm a little worried about my stock Dana 30, should I swap it, or upgrade it? Also I've not heard much about a hp30, can you get them out of any Cherokee? Or is there a specific model/year that has them?
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Old 04-25-2013, 06:46 AM   #5
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If you are only running 35s an 8.8 or D44 or your best options. They aren't too big so they shouldn't have a negative effect on ground clearance like a D60 would. The 8.8 will be plenty strong enough, maybe look into beefing up the axle shafts with a superior kit for some added strength and durability.
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Old 04-25-2013, 04:44 PM   #6
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Ok, so I should be fine with my Dana 30 if I just upgrade the shafts?
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Old 04-25-2013, 04:51 PM   #7
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I'm just starting to get into this myself.

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Originally Posted by jordorunway View Post
Ok, so I should be fine with my Dana 30 if I just upgrade the shafts?
From what I've learned so far (and it may seem obvious): bigger tires need more power behind them in order to take advantage of their size. That doesn't just mean the engine (or the shafts), it means everything between the engine and the tire.

You need appropriate axle hardware in order to provide the appropriate amount of power to your 35s, especially if you want to wheel. Forcing the Jeep to move 35" tires with anything less than a D44 will tear up your axles.
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Old 04-25-2013, 04:56 PM   #8
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My 2 cents. I have a 2000 4.0, 3spd auto with 35's and 4.88's. The jeep climbs great but tacks out at 3000rpms @ 60mph. O, and it gets 10miles to the gallon.
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Old 04-25-2013, 05:01 PM   #9
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Really?? Just 10 mpg's? I thought regearing would also fix that issue?
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Old 04-25-2013, 05:03 PM   #10
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It's a trade-off. The higher gears you go, the better power you'll get from the engine to the tires. However, your MPG drops.

The lower you go with your gears, the better your mileage, but you'll get less power to your tires.
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Old 04-25-2013, 05:05 PM   #11
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The 3spd auto doesn't have an OD gear, 4.56 is a better ratio for 35s.
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Old 04-25-2013, 06:43 PM   #12
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I going with 4.10's and a Teraflex Teralow231 with 2wd low. Better street use with lower gears for wheelin. Not cheap. Want to buy some 4.88's. Dana44 rear and Dana30 front. Everything is be installed in the next 2 or 3 weeks. Waiting for parts. I'll let you know the out come.
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Old 04-25-2013, 06:53 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by jordorunway View Post
Some quick help, thanks!!

Right now my biggest issue is wether or not to go ahead and get this ford 8.8. Is it worth it? Or should I go for something different? I've read the whole 8.8 thread on here, and that's what practically sold me on it, but I'm just wanting to make sure it's the right way to go. Also, I'm a little worried about my stock Dana 30, should I swap it, or upgrade it? Also I've not heard much about a hp30, can you get them out of any Cherokee? Or is there a specific model/year that has them?
Honestly, unless you are super into fabbing up everything you will need for the 8.8 swap, a TJ D44 would be a direct bolt in swap, would be the correct length, would have better ground clearance, etc. However, the 8.8 is marginally stronger. Will you need that strength for 35s? No. After the PO of my Jeep was done trying to get the D35 to work with locked 35s, a D44 was swapped in instead. The D30 should be fine with some good chromoly shafts. Plenty of people do some really crazy chit with D30s and locked 35s.
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Old 04-25-2013, 07:35 PM   #14
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Honestly, unless you are super into fabbing up everything you will need for the 8.8 swap, a TJ D44 would be a direct bolt in swap, would be the correct length, would have better ground clearance, etc. However, the 8.8 is marginally stronger. Will you need that strength for 35s? No. After the PO of my Jeep was done trying to get the D35 to work with locked 35s, a D44 was swapped in instead. The D30 should be fine with some good chromoly shafts. Plenty of people do some really crazy chit with D30s and locked 35s.
Well the thing that is pushing me toward the 8.8 is the price, I got one offered to me for $100 came out of a 96 explorer. He was gonna put it in his Cherokee but never did. I have yet to come across a TJ D44 or I would snatch that up, only axles I come across are full size and this 8.8 is the first one Ive found.
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Old 04-25-2013, 08:24 PM   #15
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$100 for an 8.8 seems cheap at first glance. By the time you get it cleaned up, the old leaf spring brackets ground off, purchase new TJ mounting brackets, pay to have the TJ brackets properly welded into place, have it regeared, etc., you're going to be spending some serious $$$. Not to mention the 8.8's huge pumpkin hangs lower so you get less ground clearance under it and it is offset to the side so the driveshaft is working into more of an angle.

Is the 8.8 a decent axle to install into a TJ? Of course. Would I go to the effort and expense to install one into my TJ if one were given to me for free if I was still running a Dana 35? Nope.
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Old 04-25-2013, 10:08 PM   #16
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So idk im awsuming u have a dana 44, Stay with it if u do mine has plenty of power and strength with the 44, and my stock 30 is fine as well, as for the lift in my opinion i went with a 4.5in lift by RE no body lift plenty of clearance, in my 4.0l auto i get 15mpg in all around driving, trips i get 18mpg hwy, with 4.56gears in it.

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Old 04-26-2013, 02:28 AM   #17
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Ill share what I have done to mine so far to run 35's in a manner I think is adequate. First I switched to 4.88 gears. Mine is a Rubi 4 speed auto with a .69 OD yours is a 3 speed auto with 1 to 1. So I would also say 4.56 for you. I have a 4 inch lift, no MML or BL. I had all new Spicer u joints installed in the driveshafts. Chromo shafts front and rear. Currie Correct link steering. Awesome piece btw. 35 inch MTRK's on 16 inch
Moab's with 1.25 wheel spacers. For clearance I trimmed my flares and a bit of metal from the wheel wells. It rubs a tiny bit if I really stuff a tire way up inside in front of the rear wells. An adjustable LCA will fix that. Oh and Bilstein 5100's for the lift. I have the stock bumps in it. It's not perfect yet but I did not want to lift it any more than 4 inches because I have a tough time getting in. I am Partially disabled. But no breakage and I am not holding back when we wheel.
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Old 04-26-2013, 03:49 AM   #18
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So idk im awsuming u have a dana 44, Stay with it if u do mine has plenty of power and strength with the 44, and my stock 30 is fine as well, as for the lift in my opinion i went with a 4.5in lift by RE no body lift plenty of clearance, in my 4.0l auto i get 15mpg in all around driving, trips i get 18mpg hwy, with 4.56gears in it.
No, unfortunately all I have is a d35.... So looks like I need to get my hands on a d44. Unless there's some miracle way to run my d35 without it failing on me....
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Old 04-26-2013, 04:35 AM   #19
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So idk im awsuming u have a dana 44, Stay with it if u do mine has plenty of power and strength with the 44, and my stock 30 is fine as well, as for the lift in my opinion i went with a 4.5in lift by RE no body lift plenty of clearance, in my 4.0l auto i get 15mpg in all around driving, trips i get 18mpg hwy, with 4.56gears in it.
Do u by chance have a picture of ur at full flex?
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Old 04-26-2013, 05:35 AM   #20
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Hi
Ill share what I have done to mine so far to run 35's in a manner I think is adequate. First I switched to 4.88 gears. Mine is a Rubi 4 speed auto with a .69 OD yours is a 3 speed auto with 1 to 1.
How do you like the 4.88? Assuming you could go back knowing what you know now, would you have gone 5.13 or 5.38 instead of 4.88?
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Old 04-26-2013, 07:14 AM   #21
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It's a trade-off. The higher gears you go, the better power you'll get from the engine to the tires. However, your MPG drops.

The lower you go with your gears, the better your mileage, but you'll get less power to your tires.
I'm not sold on this. If you have less power then you are going to have press the pedal harder to get the Jeep moving, this opens up the throttle body and increases the amount of fuel being used due to the increased air flow into the engine. If you have the right gears for your tires you shouldn't have to press the pedal as hard and the engine should have to work less to move the larger tires. While there may be a mild drop in MPG it shouldn't be nearly as much as you are seeing. I still pull around 16MPGs mixed driving with 4.10s and my tires that measure 32.5in (4.0 with a 5sp).
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Old 04-26-2013, 07:30 AM   #22
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8.8 rear. Leave the 30 front and don't beat the ever living crap out of it, it will be fine, I have been running my 30 front for years with 35s. Keep a LCOG and you will be a lot happier with the end result.
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Old 04-26-2013, 09:00 AM   #23
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How do you like the 4.88? Assuming you could go back knowing what you know now, would you have gone 5.13 or 5.38 instead of 4.88?
4.88 is awesome with the 5-speed manual and 35" tires as I used to have in my previous TJ, but 4.88 positively sucks big time with the 4-speed automatic like he has & I now have. With the 4-speed automatic, 5.13 is better but I'd go to 5.38 if I was choosing a new gear ratio.

As said above, 4.56 is ideal if you have 35" tires and the 3-speed automatic used through 2002.
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Old 04-26-2013, 09:39 AM   #24
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I have a 2004 TJ.
35 12x5
5.5 RE Long Arm
4.56 Gears
5 speed manual
Stock Axles
D44 rear
D30 front
Tom Woods Drive Lines.

This is not a daily driver.

I will link what photos I have uploaded so you can see it in action.

Crown King Spring 2013 Slideshow by Ducken331 | Photobucket

If you need harder wheeling videos/Photos I can upload them early next week. They are on my HD video camera which is out of state at the moment.
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Old 04-26-2013, 10:14 AM   #25
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If you are only running 35s an 8.8 or D44 or your best options. They aren't too big so they shouldn't have a negative effect on ground clearance like a D60 would. The 8.8 will be plenty strong enough, maybe look into beefing up the axle shafts with a superior kit for some added strength and durability.
Beefing the shafts for 35's isn't really necessary.
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Old 04-26-2013, 10:15 AM   #26
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I'm just starting to get into this myself.

From what I've learned so far (and it may seem obvious): bigger tires need more power behind them in order to take advantage of their size. That doesn't just mean the engine (or the shafts), it means everything between the engine and the tire.

You need appropriate axle hardware in order to provide the appropriate amount of power to your 35s, especially if you want to wheel. Forcing the Jeep to move 35" tires with anything less than a D44 will tear up your axles.
Also wrong, a front Dana 30 will last just fine with a nice set of shafts locked up.
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Old 04-26-2013, 10:17 AM   #27
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I going with 4.10's and a Teraflex Teralow231 with 2wd low. Better street use with lower gears for wheelin. Not cheap. Want to buy some 4.88's. Dana44 rear and Dana30 front. Everything is be installed in the next 2 or 3 weeks. Waiting for parts. I'll let you know the out come.
Don't waste your time on teralow. Do some google searching and you'll find it breaks fairly easily. You have 4 low when you need low range..don't waste the money.
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Old 04-26-2013, 10:38 AM   #28
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I'm not sold on this. If you have less power then you are going to have press the pedal harder to get the Jeep moving, this opens up the throttle body and increases the amount of fuel being used due to the increased air flow into the engine. If you have the right gears for your tires you shouldn't have to press the pedal as hard and the engine should have to work less to move the larger tires. While there may be a mild drop in MPG it shouldn't be nearly as much as you are seeing. I still pull around 16MPGs mixed driving with 4.10s and my tires that measure 32.5in (4.0 with a 5sp).
I think my gas milage would be a lot better but it's been more than 6 months now and I still can't keep my foot out of the gas.
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Old 04-26-2013, 11:07 AM   #29
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I'm not sold on this. If you have less power then you are going to have press the pedal harder to get the Jeep moving, this opens up the throttle body and increases the amount of fuel being used due to the increased air flow into the engine. If you have the right gears for your tires you shouldn't have to press the pedal as hard and the engine should have to work less to move the larger tires. While there may be a mild drop in MPG it shouldn't be nearly as much as you are seeing. I still pull around 16MPGs mixed driving with 4.10s and my tires that measure 32.5in (4.0 with a 5sp).
You are correct. Around town stop/go taking care of the gears will improve MPG. On the highway, higher rpms will hurt MPG. It's a tradeoff and there is a balance range.
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Old 04-26-2013, 11:29 AM   #30
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Beefing the shafts for 35's isn't really necessary.
I tweaked/torqued the splines on my rear locked Dana 44's OE axle shafts so badly with 35" tires I had to replace them, I replaced them with Superior Axle's alloy shafts with no further problems.

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Also wrong, a front Dana 30 will last just fine with a nice set of shafts locked up.
My locked Dana 30's passenger-side shaft snapped with 35" tires. [Edit: I think I misread your comment... I think maybe you were saying a Dana 30 will hold up fine to being locked with 35" tires with alloy shafts when you said "nice shafts". If so, I agree. ]

The below pic was taken during the repair right after I removed my busted front axle shaft while on Sledgehammer in JV.

So I wouldn't be so quick to claim that our D30/D44 axle shafts hold up "just fine" to being locked with 35" tires.
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