The intent of this build thread is to provide a step by step account of the procedures and equipment necessary to complete a solid axle swap on a 1st Gen Toyota Tacoma. I will start off with rebuilding the axle, with the hopes of eventually putting it on the truck. I wanted to mention that I am a college student and this build is on a budget! I will be including all of the parts and tools I have purchased during the build. Since I’m fairly new to all of this myself, this has been taking me a lot of time and research and I’m still learning as I go. Hopefully this build thread will help cut down research time if you decide to one day tackle this project yourself.
2002 Toyota Tacoma
2.7L 3rz-fe Engine (4 cyl)
1979 Jeep J10
Front Dana 44 (10 Bolt)
I chose to use a Dana 44 axle with a driver’s side differential for simplicity reasons. It matches up with the trucks existing transfer case and has 6x5 ½ bolt pattern to match rims. It also has a 61”wms which also seems to be the best track length to work with without having to modify the length of the axle. From my understanding these axles can be found underneath late 70’s to early 90’s Jeep J10’s and Grand Wagoneer’s without a vacuum disconnect (which can easily be identified by the “goofy” shaped differential equipped with a vacuum disconnect).
This is a great link, helping you identify drivers side Dana 44 axles, their specifications, and flat top knuckles/high steer.
I picked up the axle from a guy off of craigslist for $100. Just as a warning, these axles (with everything on them) are very heavy! You will need at least two guys to move it.