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2wd to 4wd conversion. Is it possible?

4wd 2wd conversion help gl wagon oregon northwest 1984 84

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16 replies to this topic

#1 sumoco

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Posted 07 November 2013 - 01:54 PM

So i just bought a new gl wagon because i was given a price i could not refuse for a car that was worth double if not triple what i paid. The only issue i have with it is that it does not have 4wd which is a total bummer.

Is there any way to convert this beast of a car to 4wd? im planning on lifting it already so the clearance shouldn't be an issue but please correct me if i'm wrong 


Edited by sumoco, 07 November 2013 - 01:54 PM.


#2 AdventureSubaru

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Posted 07 November 2013 - 02:21 PM

Yes, but lots of work. requires at least the following

 

4wd trans, driveshaft, differential and hanger, rear axles and 4wd rear spindles, 4wd clutch

 

Some will say to just wait and buy a 4x4 but if you aren't afraid of wrenching for a while and have access to parts, it can be done. Or sell yours for a profit and get a 4wd.

 

Front wheel drive get's you through a lot in these cars though. A little ground clearance should have you ready for light trails/snow. Find a way to get 4wd if you want real off roading/wheeling.



#3 sumoco

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Posted 07 November 2013 - 08:30 PM

So if I need new spindles and such should I just try to find an xt6 and use it's spindles and hub so I can get the lug conversion?

#4 wagonist

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Posted 07 November 2013 - 08:42 PM

If you want to go 5 lug, then yes, just get the entire rear suspension off an XT6, although the XT6 arms won't have the wagon bumpstops (but you can cut these off & weld them)

Don't forget to include the large round tube under the rear seats, these have an extra bracket to hold up the diff in the 4wd models.

 

Front drivehsafts varied in shaft thicknesses depending on the model (although for some reason I think the FWD ones are thicker :P)

 

All of the captive nuts will already be in the chassis for the extra parts of the rear suspension.

The only thing missing from your chassis are the brackets that hold up the centre bearing for the tailshaft. Cut these out of a wreck and get them welded on.



#5 Caboobaroo

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Posted 07 November 2013 - 11:44 PM

What year is the car? Most Subarus, you can bolt most of the 4wd system into but depending on the year will change what parts you'll need and what other modifications the car might need.

#6 MilesFox

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Posted 08 November 2013 - 12:20 AM

Find a whole car for cheap or at the junkyard to salvage your parts. It's easier to get a whole setup rom the same rig vs sourcing bits and pieces.

 

Otherwise, you can retrofit the rear suspension from the subframe, trailing arms, diff and axle bit by bit, and then come up on the trans and driveshaft and there you go.

 

If you source the trans and driveshaft, you can install the first part of the driveshaft by the carrier bearing (you will have to make mount), and drive the trans in FWD until you source rear parts.

 

Theoretically, this platorm can be FWD, 4wd, or RWD



#7 sumoco

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Posted 08 November 2013 - 12:57 AM

It's an 84 gl wagon, also does the two door version have the same length drive shaft?

Edited by sumoco, 08 November 2013 - 01:01 AM.


#8 Gloyale

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Posted 08 November 2013 - 11:49 AM

You will need an EA81 rear suspension and driveline.....and a 4wd trans of course.

 

Finding all those parts for an EA81 car is getting tougher. 

 

Brats and Wagons are what you will want a driveline from.  Good news is you don't have to fab a carrier mount with the older body....unless you end up going with a 5spd.

 

HOnestly.....if the car is nice.....I'd leave it alone.......fix it up. and use it for transportation, and find a cheap 4wd 85-89 wagon with the 4wd and daul range in it already.  4wd conversion is alot of work and then you'll be faced upgrading to 5spd and eventually EJ.....better to start with a 4wd to make a wheeler.



#9 Phizinza

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Posted 08 November 2013 - 04:39 PM

It's on my old sedan, but essentially the same, have a read http://offroadingsub...3sedan_4wd.html

#10 sumoco

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Posted 08 November 2013 - 10:24 PM

It's on my old sedan, but essentially the same, have a readhttp://offroadingsub...3sedan_4wd.html

.


So I will have to get a different gas tank aswell?

#11 Gloyale

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Posted 10 November 2013 - 02:01 PM

.


So I will have to get a different gas tank aswell?

 

Yes unless you install a 3" or more lift, and block down the mustache bar.



#12 ferox

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Posted 10 November 2013 - 02:50 PM

It's an 84 gl wagon, also does the two door version have the same length drive shaft?

No, the two door version is referred to here as a Hatch, and the drive shaft is shorter.

 

As others have said, getting another vehicle is the best option for 4wd.  The fwd '84 are known to get really great gas mileage and be really dependable.  If you are going to modify it I would give it an SPFI swap, then you would have a cool, dependable, fuel economical hauler.

 

As Gloyale mentioned keep a look out for an '85-'89 that has the 5 spd dual range 4WD already in it.  You can find them really cheap too.  Then if you do an EJ engine swap you will have a super capable 4WD wagon.



#13 Uberoo

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Posted 10 November 2013 - 02:54 PM

No, the two door version is referred to here as a Hatch, and the drive shaft is shorter.

 

As others have said, getting another vehicle is the best option for 4wd.  The fwd '84 are known to get really great gas mileage and be really dependable.  If you are going to modify it I would give it an SPFI swap, then you would have a cool, dependable, fuel economical hauler.

 

As Gloyale mentioned keep a look out for an '85-'89 that has the 5 spd dual range 4WD already in it.  You can find them really cheap too.  Then if you do an EJ engine swap you will have a super capable 4WD wagon.

especially if you find one with a blown headgasket.



#14 grossgary

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Posted 10 November 2013 - 11:38 PM

someone on subaruxt.com documented with gobs of pictures a full 2WD to 4WD swap.  mr.radon is his user name.

it's quite labor intensive..like they all said it makes more sense usually just to get what you want.  sell what you have and get what you want.  if you can contemplate a swap of this magnitude then you can easily sell this car and fine what you want that needs some mechanical repair for cheaper than you sell the other one for.



#15 Uberoo

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Posted 12 November 2013 - 04:37 PM

If your still deadset on the swap it isnt really hard just time consuming.

Swap your transmission for a 4wd transmission

set the rear of the car on jackstands

remove the rear suspension(4 bolts plus shocks,brake lines,etc)

remove gas tank and install 4wd version unless lifting 3+ inches.

Install 4wd suspension(4 bolts+ 4 for the diff mount+shocks+brake lines)

install driveshaft.

 

If you have all of the parts ready to go and your using impact tools it could easily be done in a day.My hatch in my sig started out as a 81 FWD DL.



#16 Scott in Bellingham

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Posted 12 November 2013 - 08:15 PM

 I have a complete EA81 Wagon up in Bellingham WA , has all the parts you need,



#17 sumoco

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Posted 13 November 2013 - 05:07 PM

You have all convinced me to just sell my wagons and get a 5 speed 4wd wagon and lift and swap the engine with the profits, also thank you all for your truly awesome feedback and knowledgeable answers

Edited by sumoco, 13 November 2013 - 05:08 PM.






Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: 4wd, 2wd, conversion, help, gl, wagon, oregon, northwest, 1984, 84

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