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Am I Wrong??

Discussion in 'Chevy Trucks' started by Chuck Smith, Dec 30, 2001.

  1. Chuck Smith

    Chuck Smith 2000 Club Member
    from NJ
    Messages: 2,317

    Got this e mail the other day...... am I wrong? I don't think so, but would like some input on this..... I know the GM "Corporate" axles were made by Dana, yes, but they are still GM axles, and not Danas... no?

    E mail:

    "I've been to your website many times and I have found alot of useful information reguarding my 74 chevy 4x4 longbed 1/2 ton. On your Page where you list what you have on your truck, I noticed that you said you had a 14bolt rearend and that you had a GM 10 bolt in front. Boy do I have some news for you.. It indeed has 10 bolts on the cover, but if you have a GM 10 bolt, it WOULDN"T be 8 lug anyway. The most the ten bolt axles ever went was 5 lug and I have magizine articles to back that up. One thing that GM lacked to do was make front axles, they left that up to Dana Inc. On my truck, I saw ten bolts, but knew better than to call it a Gm 10 bolt. Further research and a quick call to my local chevy parts retailer and I found out that it was a Dana 44. Now, 1/2 ton and 3/4 ton chevys through 73-87 all went this way unless they requested an axle beefup. At no time did GM ever install 10 bolt on 1/2 ton or larger trucks."

    I know there is at least 3 different front axles GM used on 1/2 and 3/4 ton trucks from 73 - 87. This is evident by the 3 different sets of wheel bearings listed in parts books.

    And, in this e mail, this guy says that the most a 10 bolt axle had was 5 lugs... doesn't make sense since only 2wd trucks used 5 lugs, and even some of them had 6 lugs......

    Input please!

  2. plowjockey

    plowjockey PlowSite.com Sponsor
    Messages: 622

    Well, Chuck you've got me. Just went outside (15degrees still in sweats and slippers, Sunday no snow) crawled under my 85 K-2500 bone stock eight lug part time axle 8600GVW and lo and behold it has just ten bolts on the front. The back has a 14 bolt. I don't have a clue as to wether this is a GM or Dana. So if mine has actually got a Dana44 then why do all the four wheel drive mags talk about changing your Gm to a Dana?

    I'm baffled.

    Last edited: Dec 30, 2001
  3. John DiMartino

    John DiMartino PlowSite.com Veteran
    Messages: 2,154

    Chuck,to the best of my knowledge,the Gm axles were made by American axle corp,for Gm,the 14 bolt is known as the "corporate" axle.I know it is not a Dana Axle.As for the front,depending on the year,the axle could be a dana 44,if it was an earlier model,(i think they changed around 1975),after that they used 10 bolts in most trucks in the front end, 1/2 and 3/4 tons.I know there was a Dana 60 under the front end of my Uncle's 84 K30 chassis cab,11K GVWR.I know gm never made a 14 bolt front axle,they did use dana when they dint have their own.There are plenty of 8 lug 10 bolt front axles,they dont have a 10 bolt 8 lug rear axle.The next size up rear from the 10 bolt 8.5 is the 9.5 14 bolt,it can be had with 5.6,or 8 lugs.This rear can be found on 1/2 ton 4x4's with the HD chassis,the SS454,G-vans,its standard on 3/4 and 1 ton trucks with small V8 and auto tranny.This rear is semi floating onlyThe 10.5 can be semi-or full floating.The full floaters come on all 1 ton duallys,and all 3/4 ton,or 1 tons with standard trans,big block,or diesel,most other models use the semi-floating rear.I hope this helps a little.
  4. finnegan

    finnegan Senior Member
    Messages: 313

    john d is correct and he beat me to the punch,i'm a machinist for american axle when i'm not plowing snow, whenever gm needed an axle we didn't make then they purchased them for the front only
  5. John DiMartino

    John DiMartino PlowSite.com Veteran
    Messages: 2,154

    If my sources are correct,Daimer is going to drop Dana,and go with american axles next year.Diamer has had a lot of warranty repairs,and noise isues with the smaller Dana axles,the 30,36,and 44 especially.Grand cherokees, are the worst.The problem have caused Diamer to go with American axle,this has got to hurt Dana,big time,Dodge has been a loyal customer for a long time.
  6. Captkaos

    Captkaos PlowSite.com Veteran
    Messages: 55

    No your not....

    The last year for the D44's in the front Chevy's was 1978. Then GM had the 10bolt developed based on the D44 design. The 10 bolt was used from 77-91 (78 for the D44 was a carryover to "use up" the rest). This is for 1/2 and 3/4 ton trucks of ALL types.
  7. GMC4x4

    GMC4x4 Junior Member
    Messages: 15

    I have a dana 44 in the front of my 84' 3/4 ton GMC. i've had my suspicions that the cab was swapped from a newer truck onto an older chassis. i asked before to see if anyone knew of a frame location for the vin or other id marking that would give the year but no-one replied. now i'm wondering again what year my truck is from.
  8. Power mad

    Power mad Member
    from Oregon
    Messages: 75

    D44 and 10 bolt front axle info

    GM has two different types of axles: the "first design" and the "second design". For those who dont know the difference, the "first" goes from 73-76. The "second" goes from 77 to 91. Some differences are:

    1. Backing plates are ALL diffferent. Both 1/2 and 3/4 ton for both designs are NOT the same thing. 3/4 tons are larger diameter than the 1/2 tons. There are currently 6 different types of backing plates. The 1/2 ton has the 73-76, 77-80, and 81-91. 3/4 ton is the same years, but only bigger around.

    2. Bearing hub and rotors are different. There are 4 types. 73-76 use a smaller wheel bearing on both the 1/2 and 3/4 ton. The 1/2 ton bearing hub is an internal drive. 3/4 tons were available in both the internal and external drives. 77 and newer bearing hubs are the same size wheel bearing. 1/2 and 3/4 tons are all internal drives. The differences in the rotor diameter is the fact that the 3/4 tons are larger around than the 1/2 tons. This is why the backing plates are larger around than the 1/2 tons. If you use a 1/2 ton backing plate on a 3/4 ton rotor, the caliper will NOT even align up with the bolts. If the 1/2 ton rotor is used with the 3/4 ton backing plates, the caliper will NOT have enough pad contact with the rotor.

    3. Spindles. 73-76 are one type only. They are "first design" small bearings. 1/2 and 3/4 ton spindles are interchangable. 77-91 spindles are "second design" and all interchangable between 1/2 and 3/4 tons. You cannot use a first design spindle with a second design bearing hub & rotor. The hub will wobble in place. If the second design spindle is used with a first design bearing hub, the hub will not even go on at all.

    4. D44 and 10B axle shafts are not interchangable. The D44 shafts measure: right - 36.13"
    left - 18.31"
    10B shafts measure: right - 35.46"
    left - 19.15"

    5. Steering knuckles. Some pre 76 D44's have the infamous "flat top" knuckles on the passenger side. These are good for the crossover steering for where the steering arm is mounted on top of the knuckle after machine work and drilling has been done. The 10B knuckles have NO flat surface whatsoever. Machine work would be excessive to make the crossover work and therefore would be easier and cheaper to locate the correct knuckle off a D44.

    All in all, when doing a swap like this, try to round up the parts off one truck to use on the other. Such parts to swap over would be: backing plates, spindles, bearing hub & rotors, and if desired for crossover steering, the knuckles.

    The knuckles do NOT need to be changed if you do not plan on the crossover steering.

    It all boils down to this: D44 and 10B parts ARE interchangable from the knuckles out. Anything else from the knuckles in is NOT interchangable.

    ALL calipers on both D44 and 10B are compatible with either axle. Even the first and second design axles are compatible with BOTH 1/2 and 3/4 ton calipers. So, whatever swap you plan on doing, you can retain your stock calipers.
    When stepping up to the big D60, this is a whole different ball game. Nothing is interchangable from the D44 and 10B to the D60

    Info provided by ThatK30guy to me a few months back.
  9. Chuck Smith

    Chuck Smith 2000 Club Member
    from NJ
    Messages: 2,317

    Power mad,

    Thank you very much, or should I say thanks to ThatK30guy? Anyway, you've cleared up the bits and pieces I knew already, and now I understand.

    E mail me if you know of a way to contact ThatK30guy. I would like to add this info to my website (with his permission of course)

  10. Power mad

    Power mad Member
    from Oregon
    Messages: 75

    Wes (ThatK30guy) can be found at ColoradoK5 at almost any time.
    ThatK30guy profile
    That link has his e-mail addy and at the bottom left of the page is a link to send a private message.