Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Austin, TX, USA
Bronco Info: Used to have a '96 FSB. Now have an '01 Jeep.
No, you don't need different gears for a locker. The gears wouldn't need to be changed, but a lunchbox locker (which replaces the spider gears in the carrier) is too large to fit into the carrier that housed a limited slip. The opening is too small. However, a carrier that housed an open differential has a larger opening and a lunchbox locker can fit into it.
So for an 8.8, you can put any gear ratio onto any carrier, but you will need an open diff carrier to put a lunchbox locker in it. This is pretty typical of most axles.
For the Dana 44 front, not only would you need an open carrier in order to install a lunchbox locker, but in addition there are also two different carriers available: 1 for 3.92+taller gear sets and 1 for 3.92+shorter gear sets. That makes four typical carriers available for a D44: >3.92 open, >3.92 limited slip, <3.92 open, <3.92 limited slip.
Bigger is not necessarily better.