Front Axle Swap
First, I have a 2003 WJ, I6 w/ 84k miles.
So, my Jeep has been making a whinning sound for the past 3+ months. It has progressively gotten louder and louder. It's a high pitched whine that starts around 10-15mph and the pitch increases with speed (doesn't matter if I accel, decel, or turn). Anyways, after concluding it was something with the front axle I took it to a very well trusted shop to figure out what's making the noise.
They told me it was some bearing in the front diff and it needed rebuilt. The quote was for about $150 in materials and $400 in labor. I DO NOT HAVE THE TIME TO FIX THIS MYSELF. I hate working on diffs and it takes me FOREVER to get the backlash correct.
I was looking at junk yards for front axle assembly from a wrecked WJ. I found one from a 2004 WJ, 40k miles on it, w/ 3.55 gears (I believe this is the Dana 30) for $400.
My question is this: If I'm going to swap the axle out for a new one, I might as well make it bigger and better. What other front axle assemblies will bolt right in place. If there are any, what vehicles can I pull them from?