Our 4L60-E (including the 4L65 & 4L70) to the Jeep Dana 300 transfer case adapter makes for the most refined assembly both on-road and off-road, and has become one of our most popular transmission to transfer case combinations in these applications.
The Novak 4L60E to Jeep Model 300 transfer case adapter is very compact at only 3.0" long for a combined transmission and adapter length of 25.5" (equivalent to a 17.5" manual transmission). The adapter itself is machined from billet 6061 T6 aluminum, featuring thick flanges, a heavy cross-section, and superior strength.
Our adapter is drilled for multiple clocking locations from near-factory (20 degrees down) to near-flat (3 degrees down). However, pan clearances and front axle width may inhibit the flatter options.
This transfer case adapter's design is based on Novak's Universal Series adapters that feature a modular mounting and support system. Included with the adapter kit is a steel base that is a highly configurable mounting foot, and is ready to accept our industry standard urethane isolator mount and is available for purchase below.
Kit includes the billet adapter housing, transfer case input, transfer case input shaft seal, transfer case to adapter gasket, transmission to adapter sealing ring, fastening hardware, steel mounting base and instructions.
The 4L63 adapter is compatible with all versions (2wd or 4wd) and years of the 4L60E, 4L65E & 4L70E transmission. We’ll refer to all these as 4L60E from now on but compatibility is all the same. For differences in these variations refer to our knowledge page linked below. There are no inherent advantages to the 2wd vs. 4wd transmissions as the output shaft will be replaced. These kits are for the hexagonal six-bolt rear pattern case made starting in 1996 and include a detachable bellhousing. Some 1999 (and earlier) versions have a four-bolt rear pattern and non-removable bellhousing. See our Kit #137 if this describes your transmission.
The new 23 spline 4L60E output shaft is machined from 300M alloy steel which provides a substantial strength upgrade even over the stock 4L70E version. The new Novak shaft splines directly into the OEM style input shaft of a 300 transfer case. This requires disassembly of the transmission, and we recommend the services of a transmission professional.
The basic installation is a 1.5-2 hour bench job and will include at least simple gasket and seal replacements. This is a good time for a more thorough master rebuild and update of the transmission. Many customers purchase one of our complete Novak remanufactured and upgraded transmission packages. The advantage of having a superior professionally built transmission (tested and ready to bolt in) delivered to you is definitely worthy of consideration.
For the front driveshaft to clear the relatively wide 4L60E pan, the following installation steps are required:
There will be some situations where the front pan will interfere, despite these efforts, most commonly on the last two years of the CJ's production run. For these installations, a notched front pan is available.
The 27 and 23 spline shaft sizes are quite comparable in minor diameter (the diameter of the shaft at the root of the splines) and therefore, strength. Diameters are very close and the finer 27 spline vs the coarser 23 spline has shown no significant strength variation. The 300M material used in production of the Novak shaft is of a superior strength both in PSI yield and torsional resistance - which is exactly the type of load these shafts see. Aside from that, fundamental design strengths are comparable.
GM 27 spline and Jeep / Dodge 23 spline shafts have a history of great strength in factory applications and Jeep aftermarket set-ups.
We’re avoiding the problem of a broken shaft like this one by going through the trouble and expense of making our output shafts from a solid bar of exceptionally strong 300M alloy steel, instead of lower grade alloys or friction welding salvage GM shafts. A second, sometimes less obvious but pernicious problem is the issue of warpage during friction welding and heat treating - which cannot be corrected when the shaft journals are already ground and worn at or below factory specifications. Novak shafts receive a final grind of bearing journals after the heat treat process to ensure the ultimate finish. The Novak shaft is produced to factory specifications with stress risers removed. Our 4-axis CNC cut of spiral gear, oil feed passages and other features are no small tasks. This attention to detail, maximized strength through design and material along with precise tolerances provide the ultimate parts for your project.
Our usual recommendation is to replace the older style transfer case (especially the troublesome 219, 228 and 229) with a newer, more modern version such as the part-time 231J with HD SYE kit installed and upgrades as appropriate. Also the 242 full-time case (particularly the AMG version as it is extremely strong) has the correct side drop and allows a mechanical speedometer output. Certain part-time Dodge 241 applications will also work. These more modern transfer cases allow the use of our cable shifter assemblies for a cleaner installation, have lower low range ratio, helical cut gearing, fluid pump, and are a newer more refined design. Read more about the differences here.
This conversion is compatible with all longer wheelbase (CJ7 93.4” or longer) or stretched Jeeps. The TH350 is the only real automatic option practical for CJ5 and other short wheelbase Jeeps.
These are strong transmissions native to 1/2 ton truck applications. Full Size Jeeps such as Wagoneers, J-Trucks, etc. are conversion candidates for them. There are numerous upgrades available for the 4L60E should stock strength come into question.
Any engine that can be made to work with the 4L60E will work with this adapter. All of the above mentioned native engines along with others that can be adapted via a front adapter (such as our 437 series kits) open up numerous possibilities.
Keep in mind that the 4L60E transmissions are electronically controlled and as such a non-native engine will require a controller.
This transfer case adapter's design is based on Novak's Universal Series adapters that feature a modular mounting and support system. Included with the adapter kit is a steel base that is a highly configurable mounting foot, and is ready to accept our industry standard urethane isolator mount, available for purchase. This is our preferred rear mount unit. Our kits are designed for it, and its usage is essential to protect powertrain components from the flex and movement typical of any automobile, but especially Jeeps.
Whether you are assembling onto a stock crossmember/skidplate or if you are setting up a high-clearance skid plate, you will find it to be a clean and simple process.
The stock D300 shifter may be used, possibly requiring minor modifications. Often it is advantageous to use a new twin stick style shifter, especially if you are able to remove the interlock pins during the transfer case rebuild process. For the Jeep Dana 300, we recommend two twin stick shifters. One features an adjustable length.
Another great option for the D300 is our Dana 300 Transfer Case Twin-Stick Shifter Kit which is a solid, high quality option but lacks the forward adjustability of the transfer case shifters. It has the option of billet knobs showing the engraved shift pattern.
All would require the
Because the transmission and transfer case shifters are often in a different location than factory in these Jeeps, this new transmission tunnel cover gives the installer a clean slate. There are no screw holes nor transmission & transfer case shifter holes, allowing the installer to drill and cut them as necessary. An easy way to get a perfect fit is to use the old cover as a template, making cuts as necessary, then overlay on the new aluminum piece for perfect holes.
The finish is natural brushed aluminum, which looks pretty terrific, but it can easily be primed and painted to suit, if desired.
These rigid and precisely machined billet bottom pans are the answer to a few Dana transfer case dilemmas. The thick, smooth-finished flange replaces the thin, warped factory pans and they virtually assure a drip-free seal.
Two designs are available for the Dana 300: The shallower depth, low-profile version for Jeeps requiring greater ground clearance. This version increases fluid capacity over the factory pan by about 6 oz. The extended depth version that maximizes the fluid capacity for the most punishing service. This version increases fluid capacity over the factory pan by about 16 oz.
Transmission Cooling is critical to the life of all automatic transmissions. Conventional in the radiator tank coolers are simply not adequate for long life on a Jeep’s transmission. Here are the products we recommend for best performance and ease of installation.
If your input is worn or you would like a new input shaft with longer spline engagement to match your Novak output this part is an excellent choice.
The automatic transmission takes more specialized tools, knowledge, gaskets, seals, and snap ring pliers, etc. Installation after the output shaft is in place requires normal mechanics tools. Transmission side will be 10mm studs or bolts and the transfer case side is 3/8” fasteners.
As these usually are installed as part of an engine swap setting the powertrain to the proper pitch angle - usually tilted down ~5 (3-7 acceptable) degrees - is recommended. Offset will be to the left (driver’s) side because of the passenger drop transfer case and front differential usually 1 to 1-1/2” and limited by the steering to exhaust clearance. Consult our engine conversion guides for more specific recommendations on placement if the engine is being replaced.
Use of the factory size driveshaft and yoke is recommended. Our adapter design has maximized clearance between the transmission pan and yoke, but it is necessary that you install your GM engine offset 1-1/4" to the driver's side. If you are installing against a factory AMC engine with our 437-AMC adapter kit, your factory engine should already have this proper offset. Our adapter is drilled for multiple clocking locations from near-factory (20 degrees down) to near-flat (3 degrees down). However, pan clearances and front axle width may inhibit the flatter options.
NOTE: Often these swaps require the transmission pan be modified for additional driveshaft clearance. A notch is cut and re-welded on the passenger’s side for additional clearance.
If converting to a V8 in conjunction with this upgrade, aftermarket engine mounts are available to ease its installation. Because of the broad spectrum of engines and vehicle combinations used with this adapter, it would be difficult to list them all here. Whatever your application, Novak likely has the perfect solution. From a 225 Buick V6 in a CJ2A to an LS3 in your JK, we’ve got you covered.
Novak's engine mounts, featuring excellent vibration dampening, superior strength, and impressive adjustability - adjustable even after the engine is installed. The design, strength, and affordability of our mounts are second to none.
Driveshaft length changes are often required. Most conversions to these transmissions will require that the rear driveshaft be modified to be shorter and front driveshaft longer.
Some installers, concerned about the expense of new or modified driveshafts, attempt to let the existing driveshafts dictate engine, transmission and transfer case location, often to the detriment of the project. Our recommendation is to prioritize the correct position of drivetrain components over saving a few dollars which is usually regretted in the long run with compromised positioning.
Driveshaft modifications and rebalancing can be affordable when performed by driveline, RV or tractor implement specialists. New driveshafts are an option, but not necessarily a requirement in regards to the actual successful conversion if your existing driveshafts are in good condition.
Jeeps that require extensive travel or specialty-built driveshafts have this option available through several fabricators across the nation. These are normally specified after placement of the new transmission and measured at vehicle ride height. As the rear driveline gets shorter, it is often advantageous to us a Double Cardan or “CV style” rear shaft with the correct geometry at the axle to minimize vibrations and possible binding.
Use of factory axles is completely acceptable with this conversion. Axle upgrades are not necessary, but they may be chosen for reasons external to this transmission upgrade.
Engine placement in these applications is an effort in compromise to find the best position overall as a package. Generally the engine will be about 1” or even more towards the left, (driver’s side in the USA) away from the front differential in a CJ application. This gives the best balance of weight and more importantly clearance for the driveshaft going to the front axle. Your tight spots will be steering to exhaust on the left (hold that as tight as you can) and clearance for the front driveshaft on the right. Fore and aft position will vary with the Jeep model and engine. Have a CJ5 and Gen I with a rear distributor? You’ll be better off a little forward for more rear driveshaft length and clearance for that HEI. If you are in a longer Jeep and using an LS engine with no distributor, you’ll have more fan clearance and better balance if you hold it to the rear. Usually for ground clearance tuck things up nicely for height to avoid damage to oil pans and other life giving parts in the Jeep. Common sense and taking a step back to look at things overall goes a long way.