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Front axle woes on 5 lug swap


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11 replies to this topic

#1 subynut

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Posted 08 April 2011 - 09:59 PM

Ok, this is driving me nuts. After running with the XT6 axles for about 4 weeks, the driver's side wheel bearing began wobbling. Seems the XT6 axle was not quite right for the Legacy knuckle.
So, I began looking through my axle stash and found a few EJ axles laying around. Most of them were too long and I could not get the knuckle to drop back into the lower ball joint. I was about 1/4 of an inch too far out.
After standing them all up, one EJ was shorter than the rest. Not as short as the XT6, but about a 1/4" shorter than the rest of the EJ axles I have laying around. That one works. I have no idea what EJ car it came from - I think it was from the 92 2WD AT legacy, but I am not quite sure. Boots are cracked, so it is going to need a replacement sooner than later.
I began looking for a new axle to replace it. After my 3rd try with all three of the auto parts stores, I cannot seem to find that length of axle. According to their computers, there are two sizes: 7/8" and 15/16" - a 1/16 of an inch difference between them. Nowares near the length of the EJ axle I have. :confused:
Any suggestions where this shorter EJ axle came from?
At this point in time, the XT6 axle on the passenger side is holding things together, but with my driving habits, I am sure it won't last long before it does the same thing as the drivers side did.
Why do I need an XT6 on the passenger side and a EJ on the drivers side? I thought Subarus used the same length axles on both sides?

Here's the list of parts I used for the front:
92 2WD legacy knuckles, brakes, and struts. Early 90's impreza springs. XT6 lower control arms.
87 Single range FT4WD turbo tranny

#2 bheinen74

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Posted 08 April 2011 - 10:07 PM

ej axles should be same length, maybe one joint on one axle is compressed, and the longer one you measure had a joint stretched out.....very easy to get confused....

#3 NoahDL88

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Posted 08 April 2011 - 10:36 PM

you'll have to swap the center section from an EA-82, provided its on an EA-82, the EJ axles are too wide

#4 subynut

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Posted 08 April 2011 - 11:02 PM

Thanks for the replies. After posting this, I looked at the XT6 axle shaft and it is shorter. Is there a trick to getting the ends off? I did a little searching and all I have to do is pull the outer end off the EJ and put it on the ER. However, how on earth do those ends come off? I tried smacking it with a BFH, but it just won't budge.:confused:

#5 john in KY

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Posted 09 April 2011 - 05:07 AM

Remove the boot to reveal a snap ring. Use a screwdriver to roll it out.

#6 Numbchux

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Posted 09 April 2011 - 09:41 AM

Hmmm........my EJ donor car was a '92 FWD 4EAT Legacy. I've used those axles in a few EA/ER cars with zero length problems. Maybe they are shorter!


BTW, the inner wheel bearing seal is a different size between XT6 and EJ knuckles. So if you are going to mix and match axles, you will need a different seal, otherwise the axle won't seat correctly and your wheel bearing will come apart.



Separating the outer CV Joint from the shaft.....I give you, the pipe trick:

Edited by Numbchux, 09 April 2011 - 09:45 AM.


#7 subynut

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Posted 09 April 2011 - 09:51 AM

Thanks for the info guys. I was hoping I would not have to take the inner off, but if that is the only way to get the outer off, so be it.

#8 subynut

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Posted 09 May 2011 - 10:20 PM

Um, just how much pounding do I need to do to get that end off? So far, the only separation I am getting is the chunks of the steel pipe. :confused:

#9 Numbchux

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Posted 09 May 2011 - 11:06 PM

What are you pounding on/breaking?

#10 suberdave

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Posted 10 May 2011 - 12:38 AM

first off. i have been running Xt6 axles in my 1996 WRX front knuckles for about 40K now with no problems at all. they fit right in and i have not had any issues.

as for the outter joint. to remove it you have to take the inner joint apart. then find a metal tube that the axle shaft fits into. (it must be longer than the shaft by a little bit) then smak it onto the ground a few times. it will pop off the shaft and it will be awesome...



#11 subynut

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Posted 10 May 2011 - 02:22 PM

Yes, I did remove the inner CV - very easy and quite messy.:lol:

I did exactly what those videos showed - I'm pounding the pipe on the garage floor with the axle end in the pipe and the outer CV sitting on top. Yes, and the pipe is longer than the axle. It's so simple, why is it being so difficult? Is it because these axles are relatively new? They're what I had laying around in the garage.

Dave,
With the XT6 axles in the EJ knuckles, did you have to double nut the axle in order for the cotter pin to do any good? The XT6 axle sticks out a long ways on mine.


Thanks

#12 grossgary

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Posted 10 May 2011 - 03:15 PM

i've never done it, but considering how hard it was to bash one apart with a BFH and other assorted destructive devices because i wasn't even trying to save the axle, i'm not surprised you're having trouble.

i found that video hard to believe considering those past experiences.

are you video-taping this!? i want the shouting and cussing too! :lol:




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