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i rescently decided i need lower gears for the offroad, im running 31s with stock gears in the transfer case and axels, im tearing out the thirds to do a spool in the back and lockright in the front so i was wondering if it would just be easier to do 5.38 ring and pinions in the axels opposed to dumping the money into the transfer case, this is a sort of daily driver and highway right now is 4rth gear to keep 65, with the 5.38s could i still drive highway? and is there a problem with gear thiness on these gears?, well heres some pics of me playin today anyways just cuz i know i like seeing other peoples rigs
 

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The 5.38 R&P is 44% underdrive. The 31" tires are 13% overdrive. If you want to return your 5th gearing to near stock, it's not a good match. If you can find a set of 4.30 gears (rare) you'd be very close, within 2%. BUT, ....

Early Samurai 5th overdrive gears were 0.795:1. The later 88.5+ 5th ratio was changed to 0.865:1, about 8-9% lower, which makes it a easier to pull 5th on the highway (at slightly higher rpm). If you factor in your early 5th and larger tires, an R&P of around 4.57 - 4.62 would be perfect to get your 5th back for the highway. True, 1st-4th gears would be a bit (8%) lower, but you'll never really notice. [My overall gearing is about 12% lower than stock and other than being a bit buzzy, it's all good.]
 

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I have stock t-case and 5.12 r&p (hybrid rear) on 31" tires = 4200rpm at 65mph. Mine was setup this way when I bought it but I would have done it differently with less r&p gearing and also do the t-case.

I want a lower crawl BUT now if I do the t-case with the GRS II to get a better low gear crawl I am going to be running 700rpm-ish higher I could go to a 33" tire and drop 300rpm-ish but that still has me running 4600 rpm at 65mph.
Not sure what rpm is too high to run sustained on a daily driver but it feels already kinda high at 4200rpm. I guess that would be a good question for a new topic.....

Here are some good tables to figure gearing and speed info :
Gearing Tables
Gear Calculator

Here is some reading on gearing by Trail Tough :
Question - Transfer case gears or axle gears?
 

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4.62's would be easier to find out of a pair of track/kick front third members, but a GRS II is a better compromise for both on road and off road.
Good observation (wish I'd though of it).
The GRS II has an 18% high-range reduction, which puts 31's about 4% lower than stock -- a good choice. And the 4.89:1 low-range will work well with 31's for most off-roading.
 

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The front will (22 spline shafts) but the rear won't (26 spline shafts).

But I would suggest swapping the gears using a kit for both. The track/kick housings are aluminum and will crack like an egg if you whack it on something on the trail. The Samurai housings are steel and can take a beating.
 

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I have a 87 samurai and have 6.5.1 transfer case and I'm running 33 inch super swampers and now and looking to do an R & P swap I was thinking to go with the 5.38 but is that to much for 33" I do drive this rig every day and if I no I will not b goin off rd or if I ko I am goin on hiway I do have 31 that I put on. any help would be much appreciated I have to redo my back 3erd member anywaysso figured it was a good time to put new gears In.
 

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I have a 87 samurai and have 6.5.1 transfer case and I'm running 33 inch super swampers and now and looking to do an R & P swap I was thinking to go with the 5.38 but is that to much for 33" I do drive this rig every day and if I no I will not b goin off rd or if I ko I am goin on hiway I do have 31 that I put on. any help would be much appreciated I have to redo my back 3erd member anywaysso figured it was a good time to put new gears In.
That's great for the trail, but you won't do more than 60 on the highway and that's at a very high RPM... Swapping to 31's will spin the RPM's higher and you will go slower.
 
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