Will an AX-15 work with an I6 / Dana 300 sans adapters and other questions

Will an AX-15 work with an I6 / Dana 300 sans adapters and other questions

Flex BT

Senior Jeeper
Chesterfield, VA
1981 CJ7. I6, Weber 38/38 with TEAMRUSH upgrade. T5, Dana 300TC, Dana 30 / AMC 20, True trac w/ 4.10s. 33" All terrains

Blue and rust colored.
I have an inline 6 and dana 300 transfer case. I found an AX-15 on craigslist that I'm hoping would be a drop-in replacement or something easy. I'm waiting to hear back what it was mated to. It is coming from a 1999 jeep cherokee sport.

The owner says it was whining when he removed it but did not grind or have any other problems. I was thinking it might be a good candidate to have professionally rebuild and put in my 81 CJ. Thoughts? Please educate me!
It could work, but what exactly are you trying to accomplish? That trans will give you five gears and an overdrive, but not a huge amount of gear ratio spread compared to a cast iron 4-speed with a granny-low first gear.

You will also need to buy adapters for the trans-to-t'case, which will cost some coin.

Unless there is something compelling about the AX-15 in your broader design plan for the vehicle, I'd probably do something else - T18, NP435, SM465, or even T-176.
The AX-15 is what I thought was seen as the best 5-speed. The goal is to put something solid in and not have to worry about it much. Almost all street driving for now but I want to take it offroad after the rest of the house is in order. Right now I have a T-4 and think another gear would be really nice. Any time anyone mentions a T-5 someone dumps on it as being "weak" and says "why the hell wouldn't you get an AX-15". I'm definitely open to other lines of thinking.
Thats a pretty long transmission, aluminum case and the later years had a trouble-prone internal slave/throwout bearing. The Cherokee will have either a 4.0 or 4.2 in it, don't know when they switched.
Its great when used in the YJ/Cherokee it came out of, but I think it would be a lot of work and $$ to adapt it to your drivetrain.

Get a t-176 or even a CJ T-18 if you can locate one. Even springing for one of the other GM transmissions mentioned would be better in the long run I'd say.

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