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Thread: Regear advice - shop recommendations?

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    Default Regear advice - shop recommendations?



    The LJ has 3.73 gears in it. I've been satisfied with performance of these gears for on and off road performance despite being under-geared a bit with 33s. Now that we have the trailer, I'd like to get some bigger gears installed to improve towing on and off road. I'm thinking that 4.57 is probably a good size to achieve this while staying with 33" tires. I can't see myself going to 35s since that would require further modifications for more lift.

    I don't think I have the patience to do this job myself, so I'm interested in recommendations for reputable front range shops so I can start making contacts and collecting quotes.

    Furthermore, because going to 4.57 would change the ring gear size, if I understand correctly, I think I'll lose my limited slip rear diff. I am aware of air and electronic lockers as options. I assume something like this https://www.justdifferentials.com/Da.../tt913a592.htm is a viable replacement? I think this may be what Paul runs in his LJ, though i'm not sure of his gearing. I'm considering whether an LSD would be better for general driving and towing than a selectable locker. D44 rear, D30 front on the LJ.

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    Default Re: Regear advice - shop recommendations?



    I cannot recommend dual truetracs enough, they are great in every situation. No steering feedback at all, it just always keeps moving as long as there are 3 tires on the ground. Excellent on snow and ice. You can drive mine if you want before deciding.

    I'm not sure if these guys are still open, everything in the Highlands is flipping so fast, but I've used them twice and have been satisfied with the work and price. https://www.yelp.com/biz/arnolds-tra...-gear-denver-2

    Matt's video of me on snow, they never stop


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    open_circuit (October 21st, 2021)

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    Default Re: Regear advice - shop recommendations?



    open_circuit previously posted:
    "Furthermore, because going to 4.57 would change the ring gear size, if I understand correctly, I think I'll lose my limited slip rear diff. I am aware of air and electronic lockers as options. I assume something like this https://www.justdifferentials.com/Da.../tt913a592.htm is a viable replacement? I think this may be what Paul runs in his LJ, though i'm not sure of his gearing. I'm considering whether an LSD would be better for general driving and towing than a selectable locker. D44 rear, D30 front on the LJ."

    I am not 100% familiar with 'modern' D44s, but yes, the carrier break 3.92....Going from 3.73 to any gearing numerically higher than 3.92 (say 4.57), then yes, the ring gear changes and it will not bolt up to the 3.73 carrier (and in you case, that carrier is a limited slip). So, the short answer is yes, you'll have to figure out how you want to handle traction devices as well. Its may or may not be worth mentioning, and not sure if it fully applies to TJ era D44, but there are some aftermarket ring gears for D44s that were specifically to deal with this issue. IIRC, the issue is not so much with the diameter of the ring gear, but rather the thickness changes. So there used to be (and maybe still are) D44 'thick' and 'thin' ring gears for the different carrier breaks that could be used, or spacers can been used to make a 'thin' gear work with a 'thick' gear carrier ....so, it might take a very knowledgeable gear shop to help you with that, but if you are interested to keep your limited slips, it is a possible option...is it the best option, up to you......if it were me, I'd use the opportunity to get a selectable locker - at least in the rear. I guess everyone has their preferred set-ups and experience and type of trail they drive, but I think 1 rear locker is more traction that 2 limited slips. Personally, I prefer the Eaton e-locker over the air activated lockers as the air hoses are just a bit of a hassle, and you also need a compressor. The Ox is probably the most bullet proof, but the actuator options can be a little finicky as well.
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    open_circuit (October 21st, 2021)

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    Default Re: Regear advice - shop recommendations?



    Thanks James. For trail only use I suspect a selectable locker is more functional than torsion based auto locker. I think I've only been limited by my rear LSD in deep snow once and never on the trail. I have found myself limited on trails by lack of front locker several times. With the fully open front diff, I have turned back from multiple obstacles. I think two auto lockers (LSD) probably push my capability up a little bit to keep me on the types of trails I plan to run with this jeep.

    On the highway, I haven't driven fully open in the rear. I'm not sure if the LSD has been providing any help to me on the highway. My thinking was that an e-locker has no use on the road but an LSD can replace my provide some extra traction and stability. Am I off base?

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    Default Re: Regear advice - shop recommendations?



    Maybe elocker rear, truetrac front? You'd be unstoppable. My last Jeep had a Detroit Locker rear and an open front and was better at slow crawling than my LJ, but I like the dual truetracs better otherwise. I had a toyota with a rear factory locker and didn't end up using it much, but it was like a get-unstuck button when I did. I really like the truetracs for what I do, which is mostly moderate to difficult trails and overland stuff.

    Have you considered rebuilding your tracloc? It's probably pretty worn down at this point, kits are cheap and easy to do.

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    Default Re: Regear advice - shop recommendations?



    Paul previously posted:
    "Maybe elocker rear, truetrac front? You'd be unstoppable. My last Jeep had a Detroit Locker rear and an open front and was better at slow crawling than my LJ, but I like the dual truetracs better otherwise. I had a toyota with a rear factory locker and didn't end up using it much, but it was like a get-unstuck button when I did. I really like the truetracs for what I do, which is mostly moderate to difficult trails and overland stuff.

    Have you considered rebuilding your tracloc? It's probably pretty worn down at this point, kits are cheap and easy to do."

    No, since regearing most likely means a new carrier I didn't see any point trying to rebuild my old LSD. If I can't use it with 4.57 gears, why rebuild? Maybe I've missed something here.

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    Default Re: Regear advice - shop recommendations?



    This is what James meant with thick cut gears, they work with the carrier you have to change the gearing. https://eastcoastgearsupply.com/i-14...-56-thick.html

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    FINOCJ (October 21st, 2021)

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    Default Re: Regear advice - shop recommendations?



    Paul previously posted:
    "This is what James meant with thick cut gears, they work with the carrier you have to change the gearing. https://eastcoastgearsupply.com/i-14...-56-thick.html"

    Nice....good to know there are still thin vs thick gears...I am not totally dated yet.
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    Default Re: Regear advice - shop recommendations?



    So if I may...I am a bit of stickler for terminology, but I would like to clarify that an auto locker is NOT an LSD. An auto locker is a full locker - just like a selectable - just that they engage 'automatically' when one axle shaft (wheel) spins some amount more than the other side. When it engages, both sides are fully locked together. The LSD will never full lock both axle shaft together, but they are also never completely independent (open) either. I'd be very hesitant to go auto locker in the rear given all the highway driving, towing, and probably winter highway driving. Some people have no issue with them, but I find the 'unexpected' auto engagement when going around a tight corner or on a icy start to be disconcerting and sometimes a bit difficult to keep things stable - of course, this is much worse in a short wheelbase cj5 than in longer vehicles like yours. One downside to most LSD is they use clutch packs that will eventually wear out, and since you can't turn them off, they are always wearing a little bit every time you drive. But there are some 'no-slip' LSD that are gear driven - which is what the torsion (gleason) style are (and maybe what Auburn call 'true trac' that Paul has). Those torsion gear style are by far the best LSD you can get in my opinion, as they don't wear out, and they probably bind the axles together about as close to a true locker as any LSD does. At the same time, for hard core trail use such as the rubicon, those of us with a single locker (whether auto or selectable) did a lot better than those with 2 LSDs - even the jeep with torsion LSDs front and rear. And I would guess the cost of a single selectable locker is about the same as two LSDs. But...your comment about what is better for road use - especially slippery, snowy roads and maybe when towing....I think that is an interesting question. A selectable locker won't hinder or help as it will just be off. An auto locker in the rear would make me nervous...an LSD might be the best choice...added traction with no need to engage or activate, and easy to control road manners.

    And one last thing...especially if you are thinking of re-using your existing LSD with the 'thick' gear set like Paul posted - If it was a jeep factory LSD - then its a Trac-Lok, and IMHO, is completely NOT worth rebuilding or re-using. The early Trac-loc's were notoriously weak and broke (although some of that was due to the jeep axles), but even when used in later, stronger axles, they are notoriously 'weak' in their clutch packs and don't add all that much traction. In other words, the don't limit the slip of the differential all that much. I used to joke that the Trac-loc in either of my previous jeeps qualified me for 'stockers without lockers' runs as the Trac-locs are essentially a glorified open differential.
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    Default Re: Regear advice - shop recommendations?



    I have no plan to rebuild my trac-loc. Still considering trutrac vs e locker. I must misunderstand the truetrac a bit. I thought it operates a bit less like a full auto locker and more like my Tracloc. I also believe it is torsion based rather than clutch packs. Whichever way I go I prefer to not diminish on road performance considerably.

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    Default Re: Regear advice - shop recommendations?



    open_circuit previously posted:
    "I must misunderstand the truetrac a bit. I thought it operates a bit less like a full auto locker and more like my Tracloc. I also believe it is torsion based rather than clutch packs."

    You are correct, the truetrac is definitely a limited slip, not a full locker or auto locker. I only mentioned it due to the previous statement about a torsion based auto locker:

    open_circuit previously posted:
    "For trail only use I suspect a selectable locker is more functional than torsion based auto locker."

    Paul can clarify for sure (or a bit of internet research), but i think the truetrack is a torsion style LSD, and would provide a nice upgrade in off-road traction over the Trac-loc without going full locker. Basically, I think its what you indicate you are interested in....
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    Default Re: Regear advice - shop recommendations?



    Thanks James. Appreciate the clarification and confirmation. I don't know what I don't know, so it is helpful to get input from folks here who have more experience and knowledge in this area. I like the idea of a better / stronger LSD based on my experience. Haven't wheeled the Frontier much, but did try the locker in snow on Switzerland trail last year. Not impressed with how that worked, but it could be due to the truck lacking bed weight, the truck just not being a jeep, or turning on the locker being the wrong choice for the situation.

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    Default Re: Regear advice - shop recommendations?








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    open_circuit (October 21st, 2021)

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    Default Re: Regear advice - shop recommendations?





    fwiw I tossed my tracloc when i got my Jeep, it was toast and I replaced it with a spartan locker in an open case rear and a truetrac front. The spartan sucked both on and offroad, I had trouble shifting the transmission in deep sand on Picture Frame Arch in Moab with it locked and had to get pulled to shift. The truetracs are really good differentials, and I think you'll like them as much as I do.

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    Default Re: Regear advice - shop recommendations?



    Trent, have you referenced RPM/ratio/tire size charts to compare your current setup (3.73) to a setup with your intended new ratio (4.57/4.56)?

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    Default Re: Regear advice - shop recommendations?



    Yes.

    3.73 / 33 has me at bottom of the yellow band. 4.56 would put me at the top of the green band. I don't want to go too high and end up with my transmission gears too close together (mph) and too limited top speed in 5th/6th.

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    Default Re: Regear advice - shop recommendations?



    Engine size also plays a role in this...but I think 4.56 gears is a pretty sweet choice. If it was a Rubicon with 4.10, it probably wouldn't be worth the change, but stepping up from 3.73s will make the jeep feel all new driving experience. I would suggest that Jim should take a look at that chart and consider regearing the YJ - it would make that thing come to life! I run 4.88s with my 33s - but I have a bit less power in the old v6 than the modern engines - and my top highway speed is generally 65mph in overdrive (as much for safety and sketchy steering and marginal brakes etc), so i don't crush the rpms too much. If I really wanted to go 70-75mph, the 4.88s wouldn't work (or I need bigger tires!). 4.56 should allow for decent 70mph cruising in the 2600 range and really help with towing and climbing the steep mountain grades. the straight sixes don't love the higher rpms as much as the v6 or sbcv8, but it can run 2600 all day. The 58 has 4.27 gears and no overdrive and small 30" tires....65mph is going to put me just over 3000 rpm - its not going to be ideal. Lifting and going bigger tires (32") will help some, and an overdrive is also an option if really needed (or budget allows). Even my tacoma has 3.73 gears, and I wouldn't want to go any bigger than the current 32" tires.
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    Default Re: Regear advice - shop recommendations?



    I got to watch Trent spin one tire in the snow last year and the other not spin at all. Pretty sure his limited slip is toast and doesn't add anything. Trent, for whatever it's worth I only find a limited slip better on the road when you are pushing hard enough to spin one tire, and given your limited power I wonder if that is ever much of an issue? In my G I only find the lack of a limited slip annoying when accelerating out of a turn from a stop, think being perpendicular to traffic and turning to merge in while accelerating strongly. When I do that, my inside rear wheel gets light and spins. If this isn't an issue for you then limited slip vs locker might be an easy decision. I'll also echo James' comment that detroit locker style limited slips can be fun, but also dangerous in slick conditions. They will make the back end step out shockingly fast with just a little too much throttle.

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    Default Re: Regear advice - shop recommendations?



    Are truetrac's weaker than their other diffs? I'm curious why their application guide doesn't recommend them for rock crawling.


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    Default Re: Regear advice - shop recommendations?



    speedkills previously posted:
    "Are truetrac's weaker than their other diffs? I'm curious why their application guide doesn't recommend them for rock crawling.

    "

    2 thoughts - I am just guessing, but:
    1) In short, the torsion style LSDs are great, but they are still and LSD - they are not a locker. They are a really good aggressive LSD, but you can get one wheel to spin - I've watched it on the rubicon for a couple years, both in a CJ and in a YJ. Short wheelbase, leaf sprung vehicles makes this worse as its so easy to loose traction on one tire. The only ones they advertise in the chart as rock crawl or extreme off-road are the full locker (whether it be auto or selectable).
    2) There is also a component to marketing in such a description....its a good way to help customers feel good about their selection (and in a basic, introductory way, it is true and helps). Obviously, there are a lot of subtle differences (and not so subtle) between the detroit 'auto' style locker and the selectable e-locker not shown in the diagram, but it helps get a first order approximation.
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