Well I finally got back to this, although it was late so I just finished disassembling the passenger side.
Last report ended at the ball joints, and I expressed the concern that I would not be able to get a socket on to the upper nut. I was right, there was no way I was going to get a socket on to it...
...but I didn't need to worry; I threw an adjustable wrench onto it and it broke free easily - a little too easily if you ask me!
I am still a little concerned with how close the nut is to the spring, but hey, it's a spring; it moves!
I left it in place 'til I figured out how everything was going to come apart.
The bottom bolt was harder to break free. I had this breaker bar ready to go (yes, that's an extension that got hammered onto it years ago, that I could never get apart
), and I had a four foot cheater pipe just in case, but just a bit of effort, short of needing the cheater, was necessary to get it started. After that, I used the ratchet wrench to finish taking it off.
Like with the other nut, and by direction from the book, I also left this nut in place as well. The reason for this is because, as Stang warned, and as I've seen others warn as well, when you knock the ball joints free, the knuckle is free to fall on your feet and anything else in the way. Well, by leaving the nuts in place, it falls loose, but stays in place 'til you finish removing the nut. Much more controlled that way.
...and really, it's only necessary to leave the bottom nut.
I tried pounding on the upper post like the book said, but nothing was moving, so I used the pickle fork and a small sledge on the bottom ball joint, and after a little hammering, it fell loose.
Then I just finished taking off the nuts while holding on to the knuckle.
For anyone else who's never seen it apart, here's a pic of how it comes out. As you can see, if the nuts are removed, it's just going to drop as soon as it breaks free.
Well, that was it for today; I'll start on the other side tomorrow. Since I know sorta' what I'm doing (and I won't be taking as many pics), it should go a lot faster.
I have a couple of questions.
#1) The camber/castor adjuster busted a tab; I'm assuming I should replace it? Where would be the best place to get one?
...and this seal is cracked and leaking. I don't know about the other side yet, but the two in the middle don't look cracked. Should I give some thought to replacing all four of the linkage seals if one of them is worn? Is it easy to do?
Do not remove or move the caster camber thingy, just leave it!
Making good progress Jeff.
Even though it's busted like that?
It's broken? If it's broken then remove it, but not until you get the new one. If you can get the new one in the same position, then you wont have to pay for an alignment.
1) No, it doesn't matter if that little ear broke off. It's just an indexing lug - not required.
2) If the actual joint is loose, replace that specific tie rod end. If it's just a torn boot, replace it, & repack the rod end with grease. I recommend poly boots.
Took me 1 1/2 hours to get to the ball joints. However, when I pulled the driver side axle I got gear oil coming out. The truck isn't perfectly level on the jacks; it's tilted a little to that side. I don't know what the oil level should be in the case; should I have expected this? Obviously, if I do the minispool I'll need to replace all that anyway.
This is normal. If you fill to the plug, a few ounces will drain out.
I found out that the upper BJ nut on that side is a step up from 1 1/4 - looks like 1 9/32 or 33 mm. I got it off with the adjustable, but I'll need to find another socket to torque it back. The lower is finally giving me a problem, and the cheap breaker I have is starting to bend instead of breaking the nut loose. I'm going to go get a decent one, and while I'm there I'll get the socket I'll need later.
The Spicer BJ's come witha new 1 1/8 nut. I have to redo mine so they are sitting in the garage.
I even took them out of the box to take a picture of them!
When I took the hub apart, the center gear piece was sliding loose, there were pieces of a ribbon spring that had self destructed (not the one I expected to see; that one's sitting in the cap) and a coil spring that was loose, unlike the other side. Is it toasted?
If the outer knob is ok, most of the inners are the same, You can pick up a pair at the JY for $25. The last few I took apart getting the D44 chunks were Warn inners. I may have to grab a few the next trip to the JY. Was the ribbon spring the one attached to the "Lock-Free" knob?
Is it the "wave spring" that is sitting in the cap that destructed? The wave spring is what is in Warn's premium hub. That may have bit the dust with the toothed gear coming apart somehow. The inner part of the hub...you may have had a snap ring come loose in order for that toothed ring gear to come out.
No, that one appears to be fine. The one that destructed is sized to fit the same shaft that the gear fits over - it's a little bigger than the snap ring. What's left of it is sitting under the coil spring in that picture. I'll take some better closeups after I clean things up a bit.
Ok, that bigger floppy spring came out when that toothed ring came loose. Clean the grease out of the inner hub dial and see if you can see anything else broken. all this junk is usually retained by a snap ring or something to keep it as one unit, though you can disassemble them (and buy any new parts you might need if cost effective).
Well that lower nut was a bitch with cheap tools, but with a good craftsman breaker bar, a four foot pipe, and some constant pressure (no jerking) it came right off!
Same as before, left the lower nut on and used a pickle fork to separate the joints, then took off the knuckle after.
Ok, so here's what I have left of the hub...
Here's what's left of the piece that was in pieces...
...and here's where I think it was originally.
I figured out where that fragment came from; turns out it isn't a fragment, but it is deformed. It's the ring that holds the gear on; it fits into a slot cut around the shaft. Unfortunately, it's too stretched out and deformed to stay in place, and the gear itself is sorta trashed as well, though the chips seem to be just along the edge. Is it still salvageable? Where would I find one of these rings? I wonder if I can find my old set of hubs for the time being.
First pic is the good one for comparison.
(Making it clearer for someone) It's the retaining ring. If you look at the this pic, you'll see the blue arrow pointing to the peice I'm talking about, and the black arrow shows how tight it ought to be to securely fall into the channel cut for it. ...and it's not just stretched out, it's also not flat anymore - even when squeezed closed. I need a new ring.
Jeff, I'm pretty sure what happened is that you went to lock your manual hubs and the one side with the bad retainer....well you didn't get it locked in. So then you put it in 4wd and the shafts start turning, but on this one side the tip of the stub shaft was turning against the back of the inner gear and that retainer. A stub shaft 19 spline tooth grabbed that retairner along the way and stretched/pulled it out. So then later on when you turned your hub dials back to open, the gear and the little retainer were left to just sit there apart from the rest of the hub.
Not quite sure how you didn't get your full engagement on that damaged side, but that appears to be the story from what I see.
Now that I have it all apart I'm ready to start cleaning things off in prep for repacking with the synthetic grease. Am I thoroughly cleaning everything I've taken off? I figured I'd do like Sixlitre said and clean the stuff with gas, then I'll get what I can't reach and finish cleaning it all off with the spray bottle of brake cleaner.
Im no safety Nazi by any means but, if youre going to clean the parts with volatile liquids, I'd suggest diesel fuel. At least if theres a pilot light or spark in your work area, you wont end up in the neighbor's yard. Also, add some transmission fluid to the mix to both add detergent to the mix and keep from drying your hands out.
Better to use deodorized mineral spirits.
Obviously the synthetic bearing grease is going into the bearings; what type of grease will I be topping off the ball joints and tie rod ends with? I have a grease gun hanging on the wall of the garage, but I'm not sure where it came from or what's in it. I would assume, given the fitting on it, that it's for lubing joints; but I just checked it and it's pretty much empty, so I can clean it out and put whatever I need into it.
you're going to kick me for not showing you this before your last trip to the parts store, but this;
makes packing bearings easy as pie. Got mine for $8.00 IIRC.
To be truthful you only really have to clean the moving or contacting parts. If you want to clean rusted steel castings that don't contact anything else, then you as a Californian may do so. Me, in the rust belt....uh, uh.
How about some useful shots of those inner spindle bearings as you clean, grease and reassemble them.
if you don't drive this Bronco all that often, IMO I'd leave the rotors unturned and just lightly sand the pads and re-grease(with brake lube) the sliders, caliper points and call it good.
ALL grease will be synthetic (or at least that is my suggestion). whet
her you bought a tub or not, now go buy the grease gun synthetic tube insert and use this for all steering and BJ's. I hope you will be able to get at your "greasable" BJ's later. Don't neglect those or they won't last nearly as long as the spicer sealed originals (which is what I like). Also make sure the nipples clearance the yokes/ujoints.
What do I do about the grease that's already in them that I can't easily get to? Will the synthetic be compatible?
Why use expensive grease for a component that doesn't see excessive heat or wear? Despite never using synthetic myself, I can see it being used in the wheel bearings, but don't see the need for it in the BJs and steering components.
Should be compatible. trying to remember again now the grease that is not compatible with.....what is it...as long as it's lithium based, it will be compatible?
waltman, think about it this way:
while your wheel bearings clearly see the heat AND the non stop movement and really require the best stuff out there possible, why buy a different grease for all your driveshaft Ujoints, steering, and BJs? Grease is pretty darn cheap, even the tubes of mobil 1 synthetic. these compenents can see significant water/mud penetration and daily movement, and critical daily movement at that, so why not just use 1 best synthetic grease for all of it and be done?