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Dana 30 Yukon Axle Install Problem

DirtDonk

Contributor
Bronco Guru
Joined
Nov 3, 2003
Messages
44,014
Are you talking about grinding at the end of the shaft for length? Or at the spindle register hole to get the u-joint past?
The length I'm not familiar with, but I've never seen anyone successfully slip a full-size u-joint past a Dana 30 (or drum brake 44 for that matter) knuckle. At least not without removing the knuckle, slipping the axle shaft into the tube, then re-installing the knuckle.

Is that what you're talking about? Grinding for u-joint clearance? Or something else?

Paul
 
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swmrdrn

Jr. Member
Joined
Apr 18, 2017
Messages
121
Paul,

It is a u-joint clearance issue but I didn't have time today to stop by and see what the exact issue is. Due to work constraints, this is a project that go sent to my mechanic. Perhaps we have to do as you suggest and remove the knuckle, install the axle then reinstall the knuckle. That is sort of PIA and something I would have like to have known before buying the axles.

The entire project came about because of a damaged outer axle shaft. The stronger shaft will now move the weak link to the ring and pinon. I couldn't find much in the way of options out there for D30 and the cost of building up a D44 didn't make sense to me.
 

DirtDonk

Contributor
Bronco Guru
Joined
Nov 3, 2003
Messages
44,014
What gear ratio? Usually the 3.50's are pretty strong, but when you get to the 4.56's the pinion gear is pretty small and weak.
Not much of an issue with smaller tires, less off-roading, or a lighter right foot. But weaker it is.

The 4.11 is still weaker than the 3.50, but it's not too bad as long as you don't keep putting your foot into it when you shouldn't. But as mentioned, a lot of that depends more on the tire size than anything else.
The u-joints can get whacked at just about any power level if that power is being applied while turning. They lose quite a lot of their resistance to breaking as the angle increased. It's shocking actually, so it's good to always be mindful of the wheel position when you're about to get on the gas to get out of a hole.

You off-roading much? Or was this just a case of an old part letting go?
You could replace the stock lockouts (locking hubs) with aftermarket versions if you have not already. That might turn the hub into the "fuse" and take one more step away from the ring-n-pinion. Might be worth looking into, even though it's tough to lose the strength of the stock locking mechanism. Gives you a choice though.

Paul
 

DirtDonk

Contributor
Bronco Guru
Joined
Nov 3, 2003
Messages
44,014
And hopefully others that have done this swap can chime in with their experiences before you head over to the mechanic's shop. I'm not remembering anyone saying they ground enough to put the large u-joint axles into the assembly. Always remember hearing of removing the knuckle.
But it has been a long while since we brought up the subject much. Maybe I'm just not remembering clearly.

Hopefully someone will add their knowledge.

Paul
 
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swmrdrn

Jr. Member
Joined
Apr 18, 2017
Messages
121
I just hung up with my mechanic and have a better idea of what is going on although I still haven't had time to stop by and put my eyes on the problem in person. With very little grinding he managed to pass the axles/u-joints through the knuckles but now the larger u-joints are hitting on the end of the axle tube and he said that if the inside axle was 1/4" longer then it would clear the axle tube but hit on the backside of the knuckle.

He is calling JBG to ask what to do but he is nervous about the safety of grinding at the end of the axle tube to create adequate clearance. Thoughts?
 
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swmrdrn

Jr. Member
Joined
Apr 18, 2017
Messages
121
Ok.... mechanic talked to JBG and explained the issue. JBG has never heard of such a thing and says it "must be my axle". Then I called and was sent to the manager's voicemail regarding returning the axle shafts. I guess I'll wait to hear back from them but that wasn't the response that I expected. Grrrrrr
 
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