Since your username is an RC car, maybe that is why you are referring to axles as axials. Now that I am done busting your balls, on to your questions. The transmission in lates 90's S10's would also be found in full size trucks, I think maybe what you heard was to use the transfer case...maybe. I believe the S10 used an NP231C which is very similar to the NP231J in your Jeep. As far as your axle surviving...I have heard of guys running a D35 behind a V8 and having it survive, but you will need to be very careful. I have also heard of D35's breaking behind stock drive trains. A Ford 8.8 is a very common swap. Do a little research on it, there are plenty of posts on it in this forum.