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XJ Dana 35 to Ford 8.8 Swap

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Quote Originally Posted by Pinoy59 View Post
I finally picked up an 8.8 axle from a local junkyard and am getting rid of my Dana 35. I wanted to post a little about the swap for those who are interested in doing it themselves.

A little about the axle:
31 Splines
Disk brakes
Axle shafts rated at 6,500 Ft-lbs of torque, stronger than a Dana 44!
5x4.5 bolt pattern (same as XJ)
Width = 59.5" (1" shorter than XJ). I plan on getting 1/2" wheel spacers to get it back to stock width.
3.25" axle tube diameter, gives about 1/2" of lift over Dana 35

Axle on its way home from the junkyard.

Also picked up a spare set of axle shafts for cheap.

Got it home and started to clean it up and remove the brakes, shafts and brackets.

Cleaned up rotors

Cut off existing brackets

Cleaned axle tubes and housing to prepare for welding and painting

Got 4.10 gears for a little more power and better gas mileage than my 3.55 gears I have now. But I will have to regear the front when I install it or else I won't be able to use 4 wheel drive.

The gears look good even with 176k miles on them. I will just clean everything up before I put it all back together.

I plan on replacing the axle seals and all the brake pads and shoes before it goes in.
I got ebrake cables from a 95+ ZJ which are a direct fit for the 8.8. They are even a little bit longer than the stock XJ cables so they work with my lift.

I bought a swap kit from Iron Rock Offroad with a truss included, that should be here this week sometime. I also got a Solid differential cover because the factory stamped steel cover is very weak. You will also need a 1310 flange adapter for the stock drive shaft to fit the yoke.

A few of the issues I have to work out are the brake lines, and the pinion angle. There isn't much on the internet about either so I will be as detailed as possible when I do them. The swap kit instructions say a pinion angle of 10 degrees but I have seen a few others say 13 and 17 degrees. It all depends on your lift and tires, and I am assuming it will work best to measure it out. I am thinking around 13 will probably work best for me though.
I hope to get it installed in the next month or so and will post more pictures as they come.

I also wanted to make a list of the items I purchased and how much each one cost:

1. Axle assembly with brake lines and cables - $103
2. Extra set of axle shafts - $60
3. Swap kit with truss and flange adapter - $260.78 (shipping included)
4. Solid differential cover - $66.45 (shipping included)
5. Brake shoes and axle seals - $21.45
6. Paint - $16
7. HD U-joint and 8" piece of brake line - $15.39
8. shocks? (not sure if I will need them....yet)
9. Sold Dana 35 for $150
10. E-brake cables from ECGS - $115.74
11. Brake lines, gear oil, brake fluid, new brake hose and miscillaneuos parts - $75

Total = $733.81
Tags: #xj, 8.8 swap