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irondragon79 01-17-2007 09:24 PM

Dana 44 1/2 ton to 3/4 ton conversion
I've attempted a search for this information, but didn't find any clear answers, so heres my question.

I'm in the process of converting an older truck (1952 F-3 one ton) over to 4x4 and I've been told to look at a Dana 44 out of an early bronco as donor for a front axle due to the very similar width to the stock axle on my truck.

I've tracked down a EB Dana 44 housing, so basically I need to know what I need to convert it over to a 3/4 ton 8 bolt pattern, and preferably with disc brakes. From what I understand I should be able to swap out everything from the knuckles out with 3/4 ton (with mods to the tie rods.. its going to need custom steering anyways). If this is the case, what years of F-250 parts would work?

Also, will the stock EB Dana 44 axle shafts work with the 3/4 ton hubs?

The rest of the driveline in my truck is a 351M/C-6/NP 205 out of a 79 FS Bronco, and a Dana 60 rear w/ Power-Loc out of a 69 F-250.

Thanks in advance, and if there are any questions bout what I'm doing exactly, let me know.

gulfcrestinc 01-17-2007 09:56 PM

Is the 44 your are using a disc brake front end? if it is the swap is easy. just unbolt the spindle & brake mount and swap the 8-bolt parts in. I have done it on a couple of trucks inthe past. very easy and bigger brakes. people will tell you it will brake and not to run anything bigger than 35" but i swapped a fullsize bronco i had to 8-lug and ran 42" on it and had no problem. it took every thing i threw at it mud trails riddin the sand bars at the river

gulfcrestinc 01-17-2007 09:59 PM

77-79 f-250 are the years you need to look for. you can use a set of half ton steering nuckle

irondragon79 01-18-2007 07:48 AM

What I'll be starting with is a EB Dana 44 72-77 bare housing (not sure what year exactly).

Would the 3/4 ton Dana 44 knuckle fit on the EB Dana 44? or do I need to find a set of 77-79 1/2 ton knuckles, then bolt the spindle etc off the F-250 on?

Also, will the EB stock axle shafts work?

I'm not needing this setup to be a super heavy duty setup, I doubt I'd be running anything over a 31 on it (going for a stock look).

Thanks for the help so far, get me at least an idea of what I need to be looking for.

ken75ranger 01-18-2007 01:24 PM

I can tell you that almost all the D-44's have the same ends. So if you can find an 8 lug 44 you should be ok. I can't tell you what years to look for though. I'd say an early 70's to early 80's F250. Most of the 350's will be D60's. Some oddball d-44's have D60 ends on them also but it's not real common.

gulfcrestinc 01-18-2007 10:05 PM

the early dana 44 were drum and used a 6 bolt end. some of the discs brake set up were the the same 6 bolt pattern. if your are running 31" tires why not get a 9" parts will be cheaper than the 60 are you sure the eb housing the right size? it would be 5-6" shorter than the fullsize

irondragon79 01-19-2007 07:10 AM

I'm talking about a front axle, so the 9" isn't an option and I already have a 1969 Dana 60 sitting under the back of the truck that was the right width and a direct bolt on.

And I'm sure about the width of an EB Dana 44, I'm working on a 1952 F-3 pickup.. and the front track width is much less than new trucks. A Dana 44 out of a FS truck or bronco would be about 6 inches too wide and my tires wouldn't fit under my 3/4 ton fenders with the stock 16in rims I'm using.

From the sound of things, as long as I go with the knuckles out, pretty much any late 70's, and maybe early 80's 8 bolt will work on the EB 44 housing.

If you at all curious about what I'm building, check out my gallery.

RCrawler 01-19-2007 11:18 PM

The track width between the rear axle that you have and a EB front end is quite a bit. Unless you run some really negative offset wheels, it is going to look really odd. Sort of like a low budget hot rod with big tires sticking out of the rear and little skinny tires up front. And it may handle a little weird. I think that is what everyone is trying to convey. Not that the Bronco front end is too narrow.
How wide is the rear axle you are using from wheel mounting surface to WMS? I know that the early rear ends were a little narrower than the later 70's stuff.

The easiest way to convert to 8 lug wheels if you have a drum brake equipped axle (open knuckle) is to use 71-77 GM outers and 3/4 ton rotors and keep the drum brake knuckles. All you need is a GM 1/2 or 3/4 ton disc brake spindle, 3/4 ton caliper mount, and 71-87 brake hub and rotor This will allow you to use a crossover steering setup, similar to how the coil spring 4wd front end is set up (with the exception of the 76-77 inverted Y). Another way is with 76-79 F250 from the knuckles, out. But they are a little harder to find and more expensive when you do.

The 1/2 ton and 3/4 ton 44 outers have the same factory spline count (19), so you should not have a problem with locking hubs. You will just have to match locking hubs with the wheel hubs you use. I would recommend using later model hub and rotors as they are cheaper and use the same locking hubs as the 1/2 ton (not like the big Spicer hub style)


irondragon79 01-20-2007 11:18 AM

Thanks for the input and concern about the track width and such about the axle combo. As far as track widths go, the rear (1969 Dana 60 out of a F-250) I'm using is within an inch of being the same width as the stock axle on my truck. Its a very common swap for the older 3/4tons like I have. The pre 1972 Dana 60's.. and 9"s out of thr FS pickups are quite a bit narrower (~64") than the 73 and later truck axles.

An EB bronco front, from my understanding are between 58-60 inches wide, the stock I-beam front axle I have is 60 WMF to WMF. Don't worry, I'm doing my homework.

Thanks for the input so far

Capt_Morgan151 05-28-2014 06:50 PM

Hey there, I know this thread is a little old but I had a question that related

I am currently rebuilding a 3/4 ton HP dana 44 out of a F250 to put in my jeep, yes a jeep, I know. To have the same bolt pattern as my Ford 9" in the rear I put 1/2 ton outers on the 3/4 ton axle, and it worked perfectly except for one small detail, my calipers are not fitting. I have the 1/2 ton bracket and everything, but the f150 calipers I ordered for them were hitting the 3/4 ton knuckle. I'm thought the knuckle sizes were roughly the same due to the same spindle bolt pattern, but I can't really figure out why it would be hitting. Are there different calipers that fit f150 that have a smaller profile or some other way to prevent the back from hitting?

Thanks for your help

77&79F250 07-25-2014 10:55 PM


Originally Posted by Capt_Morgan151 (Post 14386838)
Are there different calipers that fit f150 that have a smaller profile or some other way to prevent the back from hitting?

Sorry I'm sort of confused on what is hitting what, but I know that a 2wd and 4wd 1/2 ton truck/bronco brake caliper is a single piston and a F250 2wd and 4wd is a duel piston??

Probably not that answer, but more like a shot in the dark or a SWAG (silly wild arse guess). lol

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