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Thread: Pinion shimming

  1. #11
    Super Moderator bmorgil's Avatar
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    This is a tough one. Only because a high quality part may be hard to find. I had the same issue with my right front axle shaft. First, you are missing the INTERNAL snap rings. The bearing caps are retained by the snap ring on the inside of the yoke ears. See the photo. The U-Joint I purchased from KW was also missing the snap rings. A phone call and I had them the next day.

    Now as for the fit. Unfortunately you are correct. A pres fit is the way it was designed. It is a light press fit, as a high interference fit would cause the yoke to distort on assembly. That all being said, Depending on how hard you run the front it may be OK. Not totally correct but OK. I say this because there are a lot of them running around this way. As long as they have some resistance when you push them in. Usually the U-Joint cap gets a little rusty and freezes up in the yoke ear anyway. If you've disassembled one that was "frozen in" you know what I mean!

    Here is the failure mode that could occur. Under load the bearing caps could begin to creep extensively. This would wear the yoke ear holes and things will get sloppy. It will make noise and exhibit signs of a worn U-Joint if it ever gets that loose, eventually fracturing the yoke ear. Unless you are running it hard and/or many miles in Four Wheel, I don't think it will ever cause you trouble. If you are going to run it for a lot of miles with the front axles locked in (no hub locks free wheeling) I would shop for a Genuine Spicer Shaft and U-Joints.

    I can tell you the shaft I received from KW was incorrectly machined and had to be modified by me before I could even install it. I used it because I was able to make it fit, and Larry needed a ride. The U-Joint fit is less than optimal. There is insufficient press on the bearing caps just like yours. The outside of the yoke had to be machined so it would fit through the hub. The U-Joints they supply are the cheapest I have seen in a long time. I have no idea where this stuff was made. I smell China, India, perhaps the Philippines? They are fine for a parade vehicle that accumulates little miles. They are not for a hard working rig. They are inexpensive however. As I said, I ran it because LarrBeard needed a ride. When the Jeep comes out of storage next year, there are a few little things to fix. The shaft will be replaced with a Genuine Spicer.

    For a high quality high strength U-Joint use these https://www.summitracing.com/parts/sdh-5-260x/

    These U-Joints are sealed. No grease zerk. They are designed to seal forever, They work excellent. They are not cross drilled which gives them better strength than a grease-able U-Joint. Remember this is a change in design. The original joint ran in a bath off grease in the closed knuckle. The seals were removed from the U-Joint. This "bath" lubed the pivot bearings as well as the U-Joint. I do not use the "bath" design. I use sealed U-Joints and periodically re-pack the pivot bearings. Filling the knuckle with lube is a messy, leaky old fashioned way of doing it. It does work. Eventually the Knuckles will drip lube on the floor. I like it a bit neater.
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    Last edited by bmorgil; 12-15-2019 at 06:55 AM.

  2. #12
    Super Moderator gmwillys's Avatar
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    Bmorgil hit the nail on the head. The caps need the press fit for long life on all parts.

  3. #13

    Moving forward, easy question.

    Well men, I did it. Iím shelving the KW axles and have sourced 2 NOS axles, along with 2 NOS knuckle seals. I really think those are cool, the 2 halves with the paper gasket, hard to find from what I understand.
    This leads me to the easy question. Shouldnít a gasket go between the knuckle and axle spindle. Iím pretty sure there is none based on axle diagrams but that seems weird to me. With all that knuckle lube sloshing around in there, that seems like a good spot for a gasket.
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  4. #14
    Super Moderator bmorgil's Avatar
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    No gasket Tom. The lube should not be sloshing around. If it rises that high it will travel past the shaft and into the axle tube. It is important if you are going to fill the knuckles, to use the right lube. Something like this. https://torqueking.com/product/777/c...4-front-axles/ . The right lubricant is very thick with a very high viscosity. It is the consistency of room temperature honey. It is similar to what should be in the steering box. A "00" weight so to speak.

    This helps with the dripping knuckles. Only eliminating that type of lubrication will cure it completely. If you use sealed U-Joints and re-pack the pivot bearings periodically, filling the knuckle is unnecessary.

  5. #15
    Thank you sir. I have in fact acquired all the lubes for the Jeep, specifically created for vintage Jeeps and sold by the gentleman in Connecticut who is rebuilding my engine. The knuckle lube viscosity is exactly as you describe. I’m going with that way because that’s the way it was and I think it’s cool, messy, but cool.

  6. #16
    Super Moderator gmwillys's Avatar
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    Another option is a product of John Deere, and they use it in their corn heads on combines. It is a 00 grade grease, and it doesn't generally drip when hot.

  7. #17
    Super Moderator bmorgil's Avatar
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    Ya gotta love cool! I admire your perseverance. That original design was the best way they had to insure maximum life from a vehicle that might run in deplorable conditions. Many military personal will attest, they worked in some nasty stuff, above and under the water! As modern tech improved the closed knuckle was left in favor of the sealed stuff.
    Last edited by bmorgil; 12-23-2019 at 06:56 AM.

  8. #18
    Thanks Bob, I would say it’s not so much perseverance as a “why not” attitude. This is strictly a hobby thing for me with no time limit. I’m learning new things, keeping the brain working so I figure why not try to make it the way it was, for the most part. I am building this to putter around, go to a show or 2 and maybe sell it if I get a good offer. It is being built for light duty and any new owner will be firmly told that it is not a rock climber. Building one of those just cost more money that I’d rather spend on my 63 Buick or vacations. Everything in balance, right? Thanks again for your guidance, I’ll be looking for more of it soon.
    Stay warm
    Tom

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