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Thread: axle swap

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    4

    Default axle swap

    Hey everyone,

    I currently have a 71 800-B and just purchased a 73 Scout-2 from an uncle for the disk brakes and 44's. My question is are there any downfalls to these axles compared to later years (different knuckles etc) and how difficult is the swap going to be (ideally a SOA which I know is quite involved). I know the frame sizes are different between the 800 and Scout2 but other then that is there anything i am missing?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    145

    Default axle swap

    There are quite a few issues to keep in mind when swapping in SII axles into a Scout 800. When you throw in the SOA, that amplifies the concerns. I have not done SOA and probably won't, but I can give you partial insight into how this affects your swap. Here are just couple of points. I am sure some other folks who have done the SOA can flesh it out.

    1. SII spring spacing is narrower in the front, wider in the back. This means that you will need to fabricate a piece to widen the passenger side spring perch on the axle which is machined into the pumpkin. I am getting around this by keeping the spacing stock on the front axle and moving the spring hangers inboard on the frame. I get to use the stock SII D44F sway bar by doing this. I will still have to move the axle perches outboard on the rear axle. SOA would require you to rotate the pumpkin and grind a new perch in the D44 passenger pumpkin. I have seen some very scary amateurish jobs by folks who supposedly knew what they were doing. If you are a machinist this should not be a problem.

    2. SII axles are 2" vs the 1.75" of the Scout 800, so you will need to make a decision about that. SII front springs are something like 3" longer (linear) in the front vs Scout 800, and some people have used them. However, the spring rate is very different between the SII and Scout 800. I am likely solving this problem by throwing money at it. I have a set of 2"-wide-by-Scout-800-length custom springs spec'ed to v8 800 spring rate ready to go by Alcan. I have not decided on reverse shackle, which would lengthen the spring by a few inches. RS is widely credited with greatly improving road handling on lifted trucks, and my 800 will not be "lifted" per se, just a minor body lift of 1 to 1.5" with new body bushings, plus what I get out of new springs/bushings. Rear SII springs are very much longer than rear 800 springs, something like 18" longer. There isn't enough frame to make this work.

    3. I am hoping that your 73 SII has a D44F instead of what I suspect is a D30F. In either case, the pinion housing on a SII axle is longer than a Scout 800 front axle so you will need to adjust (shorten) the front driveshaft. Depending on your lift and SOA, it may need to be lengthened! If the front axle is really a D30, I wouldn't use it for a lifted SOA Scout. Folks break D44s on lifted trucks all the time and a D30 is weaker than a D44. That would be a lot of money do drop into a front axle that keeps breaking. That yearwas a transition time for D30s also so is it even a disc brake axle? I have a drum D30out of a 73 sitting outside my shop.

    4. You will need to upgrade your brake system as it will not supply the calipers with enough fluid. If you are going to all this trouble, you should do a rear disc brake conversion as there are bolt-on kits. Youwill need a bigger MC meant for disc brake setups. It is going to be difficult but not impossible to reverse engineer a booster in the cramped stock MC location. Many folks have chopped out a space for it out of the wheel well.

    5. Scout 800 wheels will not clear SII D44F caliper setups. The backspacing is different. Also, Scout 800 wheels are narrower than SII wheels. Therefore, you will likely need new wheels or at least spacers. You were probably going to do this anyway with your lift but I just thought I'd throw it out there.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Hurlburt Field, FL
    Posts
    495

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by 71-800B View Post
    Hey everyone,

    I currently have a 71 800-B and just purchased a 73 Scout-2 from an uncle for the disk brakes and 44's. My question is are there any downfalls to these axles compared to later years (different knuckles etc) and how difficult is the swap going to be (ideally a SOA which I know is quite involved). I know the frame sizes are different between the 800 and Scout2 but other then that is there anything i am missing?
    Just throwing an idea out here for ya... You might want to consider just swapping out your 800 body onto the Scout II frame. I'm not 100% on everything it would take; you'd have to re-weld some body mounts and a couple other small adjustments, but I've seen it done before. It would eliminate any confusion as to what parts will work on the 800 though, because all your running gear would match right up for the Scout II frame.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    4

    Default

    yeah swapping the body would have been my first choice but fromreading online it seemed like it was much more involved. also the scout2 (i think it is a 74 not a 73 due to the fact that i know its a 44 and discs)has a 727 auto and i have a t-19 in the 800. i suppose i could keep the auto but i really enjoy the manual...but that would pose the least ammt of changes in the driveline

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Hurlburt Field, FL
    Posts
    495

    Default

    Yeah, it was just a suggestion. I really have no idea how in-depth a body swap actually is. I know that there is a slight difference in the frames between manual and auto tranny's, like the thing the clutch rod pivots on. I suppose if you're handy with a welder and have some time on your hands to figure it all out it wouldn't be a problem.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    4

    Default

    yeah i appreciate the suggestion the Scout 2 also having a narrower frame will mean a better turning radius. i know there was a shop in Bremerton Washington that was supposedly making a body swap kit but i havent heard if they have finished it yet.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Aiken, SC
    Posts
    2,423

    Default

    I talked to John a couple of months ago, and he seemed confident that it was ready to go. He had been moving. I suggest you give him a call and ask him if it's ready.
    Allan E.
    Curmudgeon Extraordinaire
    Charter Member, Old Hippie IH Club
    Old fashioned binder freak

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