Fixing The Front Axle: Upgrading Your Dodge Dana 60
Upgrading Your Dodge Dana 60 to Handle Serious Power
Weak links. Every truck has them: the part in the system that’s just a bit weaker than the rest. Some become apparent when you add copious amounts of power. Others make themselves known with age. The front axle in the ’99 to ’08 Dodge 2500/3500 and ’99 to ’04 Ford Super Duty trucks are great examples. Overall, these are pretty good assemblies, but they use unit bearings, which become a weak link over time. It’s natural for bearings to wear, but when these fail, the front wheel can part ways with the truck. And if you’ve added more power and larger tires, you’ve shortened the life expectancy of the stock unit bearings considerably. The other big weak link in these front-axle assemblies is the steering joints. The stockers are generally OK if you haven’t added power or larger tires, but do both and you’ll find the limit pretty soon.
We decided to be proactive and upgrade both the steering joints and the unit bearings in this ’03 Dodge Ram 2500. The truck has moderate power upgrades and stock tires. The unit bearings were starting to make noise, which means the pin had been pulled on the grenade and it was just a matter of time. We took the truck to Unlimited Offroad Centers in Fenton, Michigan, to install a Spyntec hub conversion kit that replaces the non-serviceable unit bearing with a traditional spindle, hub, and bearing assembly. We also upgraded the axleshafts with an RCV Ultimate CV axle set. The shafts are made from aircraft-quality steel and the CV joints are engineered to handle serious abuse while eliminating the crow hop you experience while turning corners in four-wheel drive. The new axleshafts and CV joints are so strong that RCV offers a “You break it, we replace it” warranty. We’ll give it our best shot.