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Old 07-10-2019, 07:41 AM
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Rear D44.. Sport vs. Rubicon

I know there's alot out there with the differences between the front D30 & D44 but I seem to struggle finding anything on the rear...

Aside from the carrier sizes being almost identical, I understand the Rubi rear dana 44 has the E-locker and 32 spline shafts while my "HD44" is an open diff and 30 spline. Is there really any benefit to putting a Rubi-D44 in place of my D44, aside from having an e-locker?

I have a pair of Rubicon axles on the shelf. I hope to build the front in place of the D30 but should I also build the rear axle or just install an Eaton E-locker in my existing D44?

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Old 07-10-2019, 07:59 AM   #2
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32 spline will be a bit stronger.. and as noted already has the locker.. so depending on what tires size you want to run that might be the easier route.. Also you you may need to change the gears if you run the rubi front and hd44 rear.. vs having matching gears in both rubi axles.. however if you plan to change gears that point is moot.

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Old 07-10-2019, 09:01 AM   #3
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As mentioned, there is not a lot of difference between the Rubicon D44 rear axle and the Sport / Sahara D44 rear axle.
The E-locker already being there is useful if you want an E-locker, not so much if you want an air locker or TrueTrac.
The 32 spline axle shafts are stronger, will that matter? Depends on how you use your Jeep. But stronger is stronger. If you wheel it being stronger is more gooderer.
The other differences are details, details that don't really make one better than the other. Just details that keep you from using a part from one in the other. Like I do not believe you can use the E-locker from the Rubi in the non-Rubi D44.
Unless you want to sell the Rubi axles I would use them, including the rear. It is a better place to start from. But that is up to you. Just saying what I would do.
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Old 07-10-2019, 09:03 AM   #4
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The biggest difference between the two axles is how the center section is machined. They start out with the exact same raw casting but they have different specs for finish machining. The pinion bearings are the same but the space for the carrier bearings is larger for the Rubicon axle. The non-Rubicon uses the previous generation Dana 44 carrier bearings. The Rubicon uses a larger metric bearing for the carrier. There is no way to use a Rubicon carrier in a non-Rubicon and vice versa.

The axle shafts in the Rubicon are bigger with 32 splines and maybe different outer axle bearings. That makes them stronger.

Everything else is basically the same between the two. Same axle tubes, same brakes, same wheel speed sensor, etc.

To me, the real benefit of using a Rubicon axle is that you can upgrade to a 35 spline ARB locker and shafts. With that and a truss on the housing and it can handle a lot more than you might think.
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Old 07-10-2019, 12:01 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by derf View Post
To me, the real benefit of using a Rubicon axle is that you can upgrade to a 35 spline ARB locker and shafts. With that and a truss on the housing and it can handle a lot more than you might think.
There are kits to do this with non-rubicon D44s.
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Old 07-10-2019, 12:12 PM   #6
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To add to the above posts:
The rear axle shafts for non-rubis are equal length, allowing you to carry one trail spare that would work on either side.
The rubi has one shorter and one longer shaft.
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Old 07-10-2019, 04:25 PM   #7
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There are kits to do this with non-rubicon D44s.
I'd be interested in seeing those kits.
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Old 07-10-2019, 05:39 PM   #8
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Quote:
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I'd be interested in seeing those kits.
I thought that ARB made a 35 spline locker kit for either application. The shafts would be the same in either housing because the only reason for the unequal lenth 32 spline shafts is because of the offset crosspin in the factory Elocker.

Edit:
RD157 is 35 spline Rubicon ARB
RD147 is 35 spline non-Rubi ARB

shafts would be the same for either (Ten Factory 35 spline shafts state "Fits: Rubicon or Non Rubicon 35 spline carrier is required")
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Old 07-10-2019, 05:52 PM   #9
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To the OP, Id say throw the Rubi housing in since you have it. The shafts are a bit stronger. If you wanted to go to a 35 spline locker than neither housing really has an advantage
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Old 07-10-2019, 07:41 PM   #10
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Both D44 take the same Ring and pinion set. There are however more carrier options for the non Rubicon D44 housing. Personally I prefer the TruTrac Mechanical LSD differential for the rear but that is not available for the Rubi D44.
If you are swapping gears anyway I’d leave the Sport D44 in and just put front D44 in.


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Old 07-11-2019, 06:57 AM   #11
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Quote:
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I'd be interested in seeing those kits.
Here's one.
https://www.northridge4x4.com/part/l...spline-package
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Old 07-11-2019, 07:06 AM   #12
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So... I have a non-Rubicon but with a rear locker as a factory option. Some of the special editions get this. Mine is one of them.

Does this mean I have uneven-length axle shafts and beefier 32-spline axles?

Like... do I have a Rubi rear axle or do I have a non-Rubi rear axle with a locker in it?
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Old 07-11-2019, 01:36 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wild Weasel View Post
So... I have a non-Rubicon but with a rear locker as a factory option. Some of the special editions get this. Mine is one of them.

Does this mean I have uneven-length axle shafts and beefier 32-spline axles?

Like... do I have a Rubi rear axle or do I have a non-Rubi rear axle with a locker in it?
Yes, you have a Rubicon rear axle.
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Old 07-11-2019, 01:39 PM   #14
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Yes, you have a Rubicon rear axle.
Cool!

I always thought that was the case, but had no idea there were other differences beyond just having a locker in it.

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