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Discussion Starter #1
I've been told my 2000 Grand Cherokee Laredo (4.7 V8 w/SelecTrac) has the 3.73 ratio rear axel. The auto parts guy determiend this by using my VIN to look it up. Okay, sounds reasonable. He also said that any GC without the tow-package would have the 3.73 rear end, regardless of model (Laredo, Limited, Overland, etc.). Okay... really?

So I went to the auto recycling yard (pick-and-pull place), found a GC with a V8 (a Limited) that looked like it had been taken care of and pulled the driver's side rear axel shaft. Drove three hours home... pulled mine off, and FAIL! The one from the Limited model was about 3/4" longer and had more teeth (or so it looked).

Now the guy says I have to go to a dealer to determine what axel shaft I have so he can order the correct axel seal, bearing, and retainer!

I don't belive this. Since I've got my axel shaft already pulled, I simply want to cut the bearings and other things off and press on the new ones... but before I can order them, I need to know I'm ordering the correct set. How hard can this really be? I have the Laredo with a 4.7 and SelecTrac four-wheel drive system. I do not have a factory-installed tow package (added that myself). How many different axel shafts did they make, for crying out loud? And why?

I've looked up the parts online, but the "interchange" info says there's no difference between these parts for the Laredo and Limited. So I'm confused more than ever now.

How can I determine what I have in terms of a Spicer or Dana rear end, and then the bearings I need?

Maybe the answer is obvious - I admit I'm way over-tired with only 5 hours of sleep in the last two days.

Thanks for any advice anyone can offer.

-Josef
 

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It is probably the Dana 44 (aka: 216-RBA). Does a magnet stick to the pumpkin? If not it is this rear axle with the aluminum housing.
The rear oil pan and pressed-in axle tubes are steel. ID tags and the stamped diamond-shaped Dana symbol on the oil pan may be long gone.
216 is the ring gear size in mm and RBA stands for Rear Beam Aluminum.
I believe that a 4.10 ratio was also available, if I'm not mistaken. The Trac-lok limited slip option may make a difference in axle length selection.
The dealer parts dept may be the easiest way to find out what you have with the last 8 characters of the VIN.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Many thanks, ImperialCrown - that advice cleared things up: magnet doesn't stick to the differential (but it does to the cover), so it's a Dana 44! This is the kit I'm going to put on: http://www.cyberjeep.com/wj/pr/axle-shaft-bearing-kit-w-rear-dana-35-44-axles

I had to print this and take it to the guy at the auto parts store because he continued to argue with me that they're different. Then he tells me I can't order it, that only a dealer can. I'm holding the blasted printout/order form in my hand! Maybe he's never used the Internet before... I just don't understand why some people can't admit when they're wrong.

Anyway, thanks again for your help.

-Josef
 
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