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Front Axles Chromoly VS. RCV Axle


Bronco Guru
Dec 22, 2001
I will bet you the guy who broke the RCV on that same line you took either had more HP, heavier truck, less finesse, heavier right foot or all of the above.

RCVs are as strong when turned as they are when straight... NO ujoint axle can say the same thing. Period. End of story.

Nope. I have 40" MTR's, a 351W, NP435, a heavier foot, and WAY less finesse. He has a 302, 37 Krawlers, an NP435 w/doubler, and is a way better driver than I.


Bronco Guru
Apr 24, 2008
Except it doesn't matter what you are doing when you break stuff - abuse is abuse and it is cumulative. I've broken a NP435 output just driving up a sandy hill, I've wasted lockouts doing simple climbs that a stock vehicle could do. Just because something breaks on one obstacle doesn't mean the damage wasn't done somewhere else.

RCV's are strong - they claim to be the strongest out there. With a claim like that and a lifetime warranty why wouldn't you pound on the axles like they were a rental.

Case and point RCV's are nice for low maintenance and smooth steering - but at quite a cost.


Jr. Member
Oct 29, 2003
Man, that guy that MP is talking about sounds like a stud. Oh wait, that's me! Yeah, I snapped the bell on my driver side RCV into many pieces. It wasn't in a bind, maybe slightly turned, and the other tires were pulling the weight of the rig up and over a pretty big waterfall boulder. So I am thinking that bell was already tweaked from earlier abuse. I backed off and swapped the axle out with a lesser spare (Warn shafts/CTM) and pulled the obstacle and ran the rest of the trip no probs. The RCV's have served me well for 2yrs of some hard wheeling. I do enjoy how smooth they run. I did grenade a Warn-RCV locking hub several runs ago, it was a pretty good shock load crawling straight up a granite face, it was a pretty good explosion, it peeled the whole hub/bearing housing away. I went to slugs after. We do tons of very high traction rock crawling at K2 in Texas, Clayton trips in OK, and in AR at Hot Springs-OCBR. And I'm usually trail-lead with no spotter so I sometimes don't take smooth easy lines, I drive roughly by braille. All that abuse probably adds up. Before RCV's I was breaking CTM's. What can I say, I like crawling hard obstacles, but I guess I probably should just build a 609 someday.