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Old 02-16-2012, 10:59 AM   #1
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62 cj5 5.38 stock axles max tires?

hello, i have a cj5 from the 62, it has a hurricane engine with the stock 5.38 gears, I am planning on making a lift and adding some big tires. What do you recommend me? this jeep is planned not for highway use, only offroad. and I want the bes big tire-preformance-fuel economy I can get without braking this axles. I readed a chart where it apperes that I could use 40s tires with tis gearing. I s this possible with the cj5 stock axles?

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Old 02-16-2012, 02:34 PM   #2
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Defining tire size has more to do than just axle ratio. The chart you saw was probably for a tj with a 4.0 if I had to guess.

Your engine is making about 75 hp. Less horsepower than a modern 4 cyl. but if we use that as a baseline based on gearing you could run 37" or so. However one main difference is the transfer case ratio is much lower numerical in your cj than a new one. Rough math would tell me that it drops you to around 35" tires.

But there are a few other things. You axles are pretty narrow. You can run wider rims and spacers but you are still around a 12" narrower than a tj. This makes things much more unstable. Now the axles themselves IMO can't take abuse of 35" tires.

My opinion is to run 33"s and have nice gearing. You still have the risk of breaking since I think you have 2pc. rear axles (dana 44?) but there are upgrades out there.

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Old 02-16-2012, 02:51 PM   #3
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Seriously?

40s will break many things on this Jeep. The steering system cannot handle 40s, and the brakes cannot stop 40s adequately. The frame can't handle the stresses that would be induced by 40s. The axles can't handle 40s. The engine...

This vehicle was designed for about a 50 mph maximum speed when it was new and all systems were stock/in good repair.

Best fuel economy? 28 or 29" tires. Clearly this size tire tends to limit the obstacles that the vehicle can traverse.
31s will be OK, but not optimum. You will get some rubbing offroad, and on-road hills will slow you down alot.
You'll need a lift if you plan to offroad with 33" tires, which are pretty much the max for the stock axles without frequent, expensive breakage. 33s are pretty heavy, and may cause some issues with the knuckles; consider going to knuckle studs in the D27.
This vehicle has 9" drum brakes. Marginal at best, terrible if offroading in wet conditions. Consider upgrading to front discs, 11" drums, drilled drums, D30 front axle swap, etc.
The factory steering in the '62 is a Ross box and bellcrank set up. This has many wear points, and unless recently rebuilt, is probably dangerous. Consider rebuilding the stock set up, or swap to a Saginaw system.

I suggest you spend many hours reading the information and posts at EarlyCJ5.com, a family-oriented site dedicated to CJ5s from 1955 through 1975. You'll find lots of great info there, but no support for putting 40s on this rig.

If you really want to run 40s, sell this rig and buy a platform that has a better chance from the start.
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Old 02-16-2012, 03:32 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lynn View Post
Seriously?
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Old 02-16-2012, 07:09 PM   #5
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okay, thanks for the info, i will the make a soa and run 33s in it
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Old 02-20-2012, 11:34 AM   #6
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SOA on a '62 is not a good idea. The CJ will require extensive mods to make it work along with the aforementioned brake and steering upgrades, and it will be unstable on the narrow axles.
I suggest you run it stock, or upgrade with a mild SUA lift, or sell it and buy a better starting platform for a big build project.

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