For this project I will be swapping out the stock AAM 800 (G80, 3.73 gears) in favor of a Dana 226 (Model Super 44) with disc brakes, 4.30 gears, and TRAC-LOC from 2001 Honda Passport. Before getting into the actual build, here’s a little background tech. Isuzu Danas can be found in three widths:
- 1993-1995, Model 44/216, RODEO, 58-inches wms
- 1996-1997, Model 44/216, RODEO, 61-inches wms
- 1998-2002, Model Super 44/226, RODEO,PASSPORT (HONDA), 63-inches wms
All are a semi-floating design and use 30 spline axles. Contrary to what you may have heard, they do not use c-clips. Disc brakes, TRAC-LOC carriers, and either 4.10 or 4.30 gears will typically be found in assemblies that come out of V6/4WD models. Pre 98 will all have 8.5-inch (216mm) ring gears while ’98+ Isuzu Danas will have 8.9” (226mm) ring gears, 30 spline axles, and D60 size (29 spline) pinions shafts. Super 44s are significantly stronger than the older Model 44s. Dana does not provide maximum momentary output torque capacity for the Isuzu 226, but a conservative guess would be in the neighborhood of 4000 lb/ft; I’ve seen estimates upward of 5000 lb/ft. (For what it’s worth, a low pinion rear 8.9 inch Super 44 with 32 spline axles is rated for 5340 lb/ft).
So, back to my project. Why did I choose to go with a 98+ Isuzu Dana 226? Here’s the list:
- Width. The 98+ Isuzu Dana is a centered diff that measures 63-inches wms compared to 63.5-inches wms for the Z71 AAM 800.
- 6 on 5.5 lug pattern. As a bonus the hub measures 101mm just like the 355s and H3s.
- Price. I wanted 4.30 gears, a clutch pack LSD, and disc brakes in that order. I got a clean, low mileage assembly for $250. We’ll have to see what the final bill comes to.
- Strength. I wanted an axle assembly that was at least as strong as the AAM 800, which is rated at a momentary torque output of 3510 lb/ft. GAWR is similar between the two.
- Options. More locker options are available for the Dana's compared to the AAM 800. More gear options for the 226 if I swap carriers or drill it out to accept 1/2" ring gear bolts.
- Country of origin. I really like reading “MADE IN USA” on my parts.
Here's an updated list of parts (you must be logged in to see it). Except where noted the numbers are Dana/Spicer. If a part isn't listed then I haven't been able to verify the fit yet. Prices are what I paid less shipping or sales tax. Note - I don't always purchase from the cheapest vendor. If someone takes the time to put in some extra effort or answer questions they get the sale. If you see any typos or errors shoot me a PM and I will re-verify and correct. Links to diagrams and service manuals are in the thread. When I get a chance I'll move them up here. Project photos are in my Picture Album.