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Axle nut failure point reached..at 45mph..help!


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18 replies to this topic

#1 El Presidente

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Posted 18 April 2011 - 03:01 AM

87 GL 4x4 5sp. D/R

Ok, I've been having problems with a popping/grinding noise coming from my drivers front wheel ever since I got it 2 months ago...not CV popping, but grinding teeth(people teeth, not gear teeth) popping. I inspected everything and found the spindle nut looser than I felt comfortable with, so I checked torque specs and found it was way to loose. I don't have a torque wrench that goes to 145lbs right now and the consensus I was reading, is that you can't really over-torque the axle nut..

So I kept turning it tighter till the popping went away, however this morning I looked at my axle nut and saw that the castle nut had sheared off the cotter pin, but was still tight. I also was hearing the popping noise again, so I was a dumb monkey and just tightened the axle nut back up and put a new pin in.

Then I was driving down the road when I heard a..POP!...BOING!...TINGINGLING.. I felt the car slump and knew what had happen probably because I was thinking about the axle nut/hub it when it did. Got it off the road OK, but I wasn't happy:mad:. I'm realizing now the axle nut wasn't the problem because when it flew off, it sheared some of the axle nut threads too. :eek: Lesson learned I geuss:grin:

I'm thinking the popping/grinding noise is coming from bearings, but I haven't ruled anything out, like a worn hub. Can over tightening the axle nut cause noise? I've never really heard anything like this before, am I on the right track with bearings? Anything I should look for when I tear it apart? I've heard bearings go out before, but I've learn in the past few months how different soobs are too.

Little help would be awesome right now - Thanks

#2 WoodsWagon

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Posted 18 April 2011 - 03:35 AM

The axle splines were spinning in the hub, so you need a new axle and a new hub to fix it. The nut kept loosening up because it's not meant to transmit the turning force of the axle to the wheel, it's just meant to keep everything clamped together. When the splines stip, the axle starts spinning in the hub. You tightened the nut until it was binding enough to keep working for a bit but it was doomed to fail.

#3 El Presidente

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Posted 18 April 2011 - 04:32 AM

The hub isn't spinning on the axle, so I doubt the splines are gone. I drove it back to a buddies house from where I broke down too, just put new washers/axle nut on and limped 4 blocks. I gave it a quick look over and everything seemed ok, no sheared cotter pins etc. I'm giving it a detailed check tomorrow. Took it easy coming back, but got up to 25mph at one point, accelerated fine.

#4 MilesFox

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Posted 18 April 2011 - 08:04 AM

the splines stripped out because the nut was loose. with the nut being loose, you may have compromised the wheel bearings.

THE NUT IS LOOSE AND BECOMES LOOSE AGAIN BECAUSE THE FLAT WASHER IS ON BACKWARDs.

i bet you a dollar that is your problem

the flat washer is slightly concave, with the concave part towards the hyb, and convex side to the nut, or if you look at the edge of the washer, the 'big' end goes to the nut.

#5 grossgary

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Posted 18 April 2011 - 11:20 AM

what they all said. a properly tightened axle nut does not just come loose for no reason.

install it properly and verify your splines are good.

#6 GeneralDisorder

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Posted 18 April 2011 - 12:50 PM

The cone-washer is grooved up and destroyed. Get a new one and a replacement hub. It's a mechanical shaft locking system and will not work if damaged.

GD

#7 El Presidente

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Posted 18 April 2011 - 08:17 PM

Thanks for the replies guys!

I know I'm looking at a new hub and probably more, is there any aftermarket/replacement hubs available, or is it a JY item? Dealership maybe?

How about the axle nut/washer/conical washer? Are dealerships the way to go there or is carquest/napa OK? After replacing all the seals in my oil pump, I've realized how much better and moderately priced subaru is..

#8 Turbone

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Posted 18 April 2011 - 08:27 PM

Try the Pick N Pull in Arlington, theres a couple of EA82's in the yard right now. I dont think I've ever bought a new cone washer, just inspect the one you take off in the yard - it should be good.

#9 MilesFox

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Posted 18 April 2011 - 10:28 PM

You can get new hardware at the napa or the dealer. You can use a hub from a ea81 heavier casting but same dimensions.

#10 Numbchux

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Posted 18 April 2011 - 11:27 PM

Be glad it happened on a corner with a disc brake.....


I had almost the exact same thing happen on the rear of my '85. Except the drum (and therefore the wheel) came off about 100 ft after the nut. Then, when the wheel passed me, I hit the brakes.....which proceeded to over-extend the wheel cylinder, and send springs and levers and shoes all over the road.



Then I realized I didn't have a jack. Luckily I was only about 10 miles from home, so my dad came with a floor jack and helped me piece it all back together.

#11 Gloyale

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Posted 19 April 2011 - 11:12 AM

You can get new hardware at the napa or the dealer. You can use a hub from a ea81 heavier casting but same dimensions.


EA81 hubs are "thicker"

The journal that seats against the bearing is taller by about 1/4 inch.

Using EA81 hubs on an EA82 knuckle will put the rotor 1/4" further out from the backing plate........works, but not ideal for the brakes. I do not recommend.

For the cone washer, if it has a lip built up on the beveled edge, file it off. that lip will keep the washer from seating all the way into the hub.

Before even messing with that, ispect the splines in the hubs. Look for a slight flat spot on the tops of each ridge. If that isn;'t there, and the ridges look pointed with no flat spot...the hub is shot.

#12 MilesFox

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Posted 19 April 2011 - 12:38 PM

EA81 hubs are "thicker"

The journal that seats against the bearing is taller by about 1/4 inch.

Using EA81 hubs on an EA82 knuckle will put the rotor 1/4" further out from the backing plate........works, but not ideal for the brakes. I do not recommend.

For the cone washer, if it has a lip built up on the beveled edge, file it off. that lip will keep the washer from seating all the way into the hub.

Before even messing with that, ispect the splines in the hubs. Look for a slight flat spot on the tops of each ridge. If that isn;'t there, and the ridges look pointed with no flat spot...the hub is shot.


hat you are saying may be true with hubs to solid rotors, whereas what i am saying may be true for vented rotors.

I did tis once using an 87 brat hub on an 88 dl, no fitment issues.

#13 GeneralDisorder

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Posted 19 April 2011 - 01:02 PM

Hhhhhmmm - I don't know about the vented rotor bit. I've swapped from solid to vented on the EA81's (my '83 hatch most recently - late last year) and did not have to change the hubs. New pads, etc and everything works perfect.....

But I also thought I have swapped back and forth with hubs and didn't notice the differernce that Gloyale mentioned.... but perhaps I missed that. Seems like the hole for the cotter pin wouldn't line up with the castle nut if it was that far off.....

GD

#14 Gloyale

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Posted 19 April 2011 - 03:56 PM

Hhhhhmmm - I don't know about the vented rotor bit. I've swapped from solid to vented on the EA81's (my '83 hatch most recently - late last year) and did not have to change the hubs. New pads, etc and everything works perfect.....

But I also thought I have swapped back and forth with hubs and didn't notice the differernce that Gloyale mentioned.... but perhaps I missed that. Seems like the hole for the cotter pin wouldn't line up with the castle nut if it was that far off.....

GD



It may be less than 1/4 inch.

Brake caliper "float" hides the misalignment of the rotor, but it's there. Won't cause any issues till pads get thin, one side can then fall out of the bracket when using EA82 hubs on an EA81.

#15 El Presidente

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Posted 20 April 2011 - 01:09 AM

My buddy has a 85 or 86 2wd 4sp. Ea82 GL parts car and I robbed parts off it to get my GL to his place. Will the front CV axles and hubs work on my 4wd GL? I'm either hitting his parts car, or pull a part tomorrow

I've found conflicting info on spline counts and axle differences. Regarding the front bearings, I heard going to bearing suppliers is the way to go, can anybody recommend a place in snohomish county? I'm driving my Jeep right now at $4 a gallon and its a thristy pig.

#16 Numbchux

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Posted 20 April 2011 - 10:33 AM

4 speed? '85 '86 4-speed would be an EA81. All EA82 manuals are 5-speeds, and the 4EAT didn't start until '87.5.


The outer splines are the same for all EA82s. The inners are all 23 spline except turbos which are 25.

#17 El Presidente

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Posted 20 April 2011 - 12:42 PM

4 speed? '85 '86 4-speed would be an EA81. All EA82 manuals are 5-speeds, and the 4EAT didn't start until '87.5.


The outer splines are the same for all EA82s. The inners are all 23 spline except turbos which are 25.


I called him and it is a 5sp, sorry. Thanks for the info on the splines Numbchux!

#18 MilesFox

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Posted 20 April 2011 - 12:46 PM

supposing this is an ea82, the whole knuckle and axle fits the same. anything from the ther car swaps. If the donor car is not turbo, the axles will fit the trans side(23 splines)
swap on the rear coilovers form the 2wd donor, and get a little lift

if it's an ea81, only the axle nut and hub would apply

fwd manual for ea81 are always 5 spd

#19 Ropre

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Posted 20 April 2011 - 04:51 PM

Does any one have the NAPA part number for the cone washer and "belleville" /flat washer for the front and rear of a 4wd non turbo ea82? My local Napa is not finding the parts.

Thanks




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