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jonas

pressing axle into knuckle

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Replacing axle AGAIN on my '85 Brat. Have a 3 inch lift. It's always the passenger side and I only get about a year at the most out of it. I've had the Brat for about 5 years and have only needed to replace the passenger side. when putting the knuckle back on i use the 2x4 and the BFH method. Give it a couple love taps, eyeball match it to the other side and call it good.

 

Now my question is if i'm off by just a C-hair not getting it pressed back on all the way could that be eating my axle at a faster rate? I know remans are crap. i know a lift will not help axle life either. last time i replaced it i was able to score a "real" axle for a bit more $$ figuring it would last longer. I'm just puzzled that it is always the passenger side. with the amount of axles i've replaced i'm pretty quick now.

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"when putting the knuckle back on i use the 2x4 and the BFH method. Give it a couple love taps, eyeball match it to the other side and call it good."

 

I'm not quite sure what you mean by that?

 

Do your axles typically fail at the DOJ or CV?

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Now my question is if i'm off by just a C-hair not getting it pressed back on all the way could that be eating my axle at a faster rate?

 

If the axle nut is torqued back on to spec then the axle is pressed into proper position.  Is the axle making noise after installation ?  If so, then it may help to "overtorque" the nut to press the axle in tighter.  I had to do that with mine.  I torqued the nut to spec then moved the nut more to achieve alignment for the pin.  Then I torqued the nut one more notch.  That eliminated the noise problem for me.  Others have recommended this solution and it is likely due to the fact that these cars are just old.

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"when putting the knuckle back on i use the 2x4 and the BFH method. Give it a couple love taps, eyeball match it to the other side and call it good."

 

I'm not quite sure what you mean by that?

 

Do your axles typically fail at the DOJ or CV?

not sure where they are failing. put axle into knuckle, put 2x4 against knuckle, hit knuckle with 5 lb sledge.

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If the axle nut is torqued back on to spec then the axle is pressed into proper position.  Is the axle making noise after installation ?  If so, then it may help to "overtorque" the nut to press the axle in tighter.  I had to do that with mine.  I torqued the nut to spec then moved the nut more to achieve alignment for the pin.  Then I torqued the nut one more notch.  That eliminated the noise problem for me.  Others have recommended this solution and it is likely due to the fact that these cars are just old.

yeah, i always use the overtorque method as well. I get everything back together, fits like a glove, no noise. just puzzled why it's ALWAYS the passenger side that goes. I put 200 miles a week on the Brat. Guess i'll just keep replacing.

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You CAN damage the inner edge of the hub piece, where it seats against the bearing. So don't overtorque it TOO much.  As haard as you can get it with a 2 foot breaker is plenty.   Take a look next time the hub is off, and see if the bearing has worn a groove on the inner face.  if so it will never seata right again.....throw it away and get another hub.

 

Also, what kind of shape is the cone washer in?  If your cone washer has ridges, it will catch, and not clamp down onto the axle shaft.  Ussually that affects wheel bearings not axles..but???

 

Is your lift a full 3"?  or are the strut tops taller than the crossmember drop?  that can also affect things.

 

Also, is it possible your lift blocks aren't drilled striaght?  I've seen bad lifts shift the crossmember over 1/2" or so...which could explain why it's just the passenger side that keeps going out.  They are somewhat more prone to failure becuase of the exhaust right under it......but 1 a year is prtety bad.

Edited by Gloyale

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yeah, i always use the overtorque method as well. I get everything back together, fits like a glove, no noise. just puzzled why it's ALWAYS the passenger side that goes. I put 200 miles a week on the Brat. Guess i'll just keep replacing.

If there is no noise then what is the type of failure that is occurring ?

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If there is no noise then what is the type of failure that is occurring ?

no noise when i put the new axle on. i'll have a look at the lift. steering doesn't pull. I've got some brake work to do as well so i'll have the front fairly well apart. I'll be able to really get a good look at everything at that point.

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motor and trans mounts?  the motor and trans can flex under load and change the angle.  same with worn suspension parts.  maybe its just flexing enough to stretch the joints a bit.  wouldnt be bad to check while your digging that deep anyway.

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motor and trans mounts?  the motor and trans can flex under load and change the angle.  same with worn suspension parts.  maybe its just flexing enough to stretch the joints a bit.  wouldnt be bad to check while your digging that deep anyway.

 

Do you have a pitch stopper with your lift?  That could be the factor right there.  Allowing the engine to lift and twist under throttle, lifting the axle, in addition to the already bad front end lift under acceleration.

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All good ideas guys thx. I just may go nuts on the front end since i'll have it apart and all those bits and pieces arn't expensive. It's just puzzeling why it's only the pass. side? A shudder up the steering wheel (doing brakes to fix like i said) when i apply brakes and the accelerated axle wear are the only probis i've ever had. Oh well, looks like i'll be driving the wifes car longer than i thought!

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If your car is lifted and you frequently drive alone, then there is the possibility that your body weight is just enough difference to cause the passenger side to be out of acceptable angle limits for axle operation.

 

Your weight may be enough to actually flatten the angle of the driver side axle operation  while increasing the passenger side angle of operation.

 

Continuous operation at or beyond the specified angle limits will cause premature failure of the axle.

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could be, anythings possible at this point. Shocks are pretty stiff tho, i don't get any noticable movement when i get in. I don't offroad it either. i'm gonna start digging into it next weekend. In all actuality it's probably just a crappy run of axles.

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I don't see a mention of wheel bearing failure, so axle nuts are not in question. Do do see what you mean by the BFH and 2x4 method as this the technique that I use. I highly doubt this method compromises the axle during assembly.

 

I would be of the opinion that the torque and rotation of the engine and diff bias the output onto the passenger side, and this side sees the torque first. Also, in driving in traffic, right turns are more frequent, and tighter than wider sweeping left turns.

 

All of this is exaggerated by the 3 inch lift.

 

My 95 legacy has outback struts, but no body spacers, and one of the axles just failed recently after about 10,000 miles, and the other one is on its way out. The passenger side axle was out on mine.

Edited by MilesFox

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.

 

yes, that is the side that that gets power first. That makes sense with the amount of weekly miles i put on it. I'm not an agressive driver and the miles are mostly hwy, i just think an axle would last longer. Still will be digging into it. Maybe i should look into a different work to and from rig and just use the Brat for coolness cruising around.

Edited by jonas

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To make life easier, if the front axle fails again, just pop the roll pun and pull it out, leaving the spindle end in the hub, pop it into 4wd, and run around as RWD for a little bit.

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