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Old 08-22-2011, 02:55 PM   #1
SCRebel
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Bronco Info: 1989 F150 XLT Lariat, 4x4, D44 SAS, 9" rear axle, 8" lift, 35's. 5.8 EFI bored 40 over, AOD trans
Ford 9" problems, leaking

Ok I bought a 1979 Ford 9" rebuilt it and put it under my 89 F150, After putting new bearing and seals in the axle.

The drivers side went to leaking, replaced both seals and bearing again. Then the drivers side axle snapped crossing the hwy. Then after buying another axle, bearing, and seals for the drivers side, the passenger side went to leaking. And now the drivers side is leaking again. Also now the passenger side tire is starting to wobble, so I think that axle is starting to break.

I can't figure out what is wrong, cause the housing is not bent.

I am running 35's, if this continues I am goin to cut my losses and go back to the 8.8

Any ideas?

And no, I have not been off-roading yet since the swap, just been driven on the hwy.
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Old 08-22-2011, 03:45 PM   #2
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How did you determine the housing wasn't bent?
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Old 08-22-2011, 05:02 PM   #3
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The axle installs easily in the housing like its supposed to. It doesn't bind-up.

Just slid the axle in, and tighten the four bolts.
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Old 08-22-2011, 09:16 PM   #4
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The stock seal/bearing set up is notorious for leaking, but not that bad.

Are you sure you have the right 'big bearing' axles in the truck? Engine and gear ratio and type of differential? Have you actually taken the 3rd member out to look at it or only messed with swapping axles?

Something has to be funky, because I am running stock 30 year old axles being turned by a 460, 4.56 gears, and a spool on the highway.....granted, I only have about 150 hwy miles on this set up so far, but it has had the 460 in it for the last 2500 miles or so with no axle issues (did break the ring/pinion though)
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Old 08-23-2011, 08:53 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jimmy Dean View Post
The stock seal/bearing set up is notorious for leaking, but not that bad.

Are you sure you have the right 'big bearing' axles in the truck? Engine and gear ratio and type of differential? Have you actually taken the 3rd member out to look at it or only messed with swapping axles?

Something has to be funky, because I am running stock 30 year old axles being turned by a 460, 4.56 gears, and a spool on the highway.....granted, I only have about 150 hwy miles on this set up so far, but it has had the 460 in it for the last 2500 miles or so with no axle issues (did break the ring/pinion though)
I have 31 spline axles, and those are the bearing I ordered. The truck it came out of had a 351m/400 and 3.50 gearing. I have taken the third member out, and checked all the bearings and pinion seal for the third member. The original ring and pinion was shot (bad pinion bearing) so I bought another third member for $30, Its a 3.82 gearing (yeah, 3.82 not 3.89, I counted the teeth and did the math 3 times).
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Old 08-23-2011, 10:29 AM   #6
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yo,
Not much help, but this is by Ford

Leakage Conditions/Low Lube Level
Most rear axle lubricant leakage conditions may be corrected without a teardown. However, it is important to clean up the leaking area enough to identify the exact source.
NOTE: If vent cannot be cleared, it must be replaced.
A plugged axle vent will cause excessive seal lip wear due to internal pressure buildup. When a leak occurs, check the vent which is located near the top of the differential housing. Make sure the vent hose is not kinked. Remove the vent hose from the vent nipple and make sure the hose is clear of dirt or other foreign materials. While hose is removed, pass a length of mechanics' wire or small diameter Allen wrench in and out of the vent nipple to clean it of any dirt or foreign materials. Install vent hose.
Make sure axle lubricant is to specified level.

INSPECT AXLE SHAFTS/BEARINGS
Check axle shaft end play. Refer to the appropriate section in Group 05.
Remove axle shafts. Inspect bearings and axle shaft journals. Refer to appropriate section in Group 05.
Inspect axle shaft splines.
Inspect differential gears.
Are axle shafts (splines) OK?
Yes GO to G5.
No REPLACE faulty axle shafts. INSPECT all differential gears. REPLACE parts as necessary. PERFORM Road Test.

More, mostly for Noise/Vibes
G2 INSPECT AXLE HOUSING
Check for exterior signs of damage.
Is axle housing damaged?
Yes REPAIR or REPLACE. REFER to appropriate section in Group 05.
No GO to G3.

G3 INSPECT CHATTER ON TURNS
On turns, the rear axle has a chattering or groaning noise (limited slip or Traction-Lok® axles only). Slight chatter noise on slow turns after extended highway driving is considered acceptable and has no detrimental effect on the limited slip axle functions.
chatter noise while turning excessive?
Yes PERFORM Road Test. DRIVE vehicle in tight circles, five clockwise and five counterclockwise. If chatter is still evident, ADD specified amount of additive friction modifier meeting Ford specification to the rear axle lube and REPEAT tight circle road test. If still evident, REMOVE differential and SERVICE as necessary. REFER to appropriate section in Group 05.
No GO to G4.

G4 INSPECT AXLE SHAFTS/BEARINGS
Check axle shaft end play. Refer to the appropriate section in Group 05.
Remove axle shafts. Inspect bearings and axle shaft journals. Refer to appropriate section in Group 05.
Inspect axle shaft splines.
Inspect differential gears.
Are axle shafts (splines) OK?
Yes GO to G5.
No REPLACE faulty axle shafts. INSPECT all differential gears. REPLACE parts as necessary. PERFORM Road Test.


G5 INSPECT RING GEAR BOLTS
Inspect ring gear for loose or broken bolts.
Rotate rear axle universal joint flange to view all bolts.
Are ring gear bolts OK?
Yes GO to G6.
No TIGHTEN or REPLACE rear gear bolts. INSPECT and REPLACE all damaged parts. REFER to appropriate section in Group 0. PERFORM Road Test.

G6 BROKEN OR MUTILATED GEAR TEETH
Inspect all differential gears for wear (check gear teeth for scoring abnormal wear, nicks or chips).
Are differential gears (ring and pinion) OK?
Yes GO to G7.
No REPLACE faulty gears. REFER to appropriate section in Group 05.

G7 CHECK DIFFERENTIAL BEARINGS
Remove differential and inspect bearings for wear.
Are differential bearings OK?
Yes GO to G8.
No REPLACE faulty bearings. REFER to appropriate section in Group 05. PERFORM Road Test.

G8 INSPECT PINION GEAR/BEARINGS
Remove pinion from axle.
Inspect pinion and bearings for wear.
Are pinion bearings OK?
Yes Axle OK. REFER to Symptom Charts in the Diagnosis and Testing portion of this section.
No REPLACE faulty bearings. REFER to appropriate section in Group 05

.........
Flange Yoke Seal

When the rear axle drive pinion seal (4676) leaks, it is usually because it was not installed carefully or properly, or because of poor quality on the seal journal surface.

Any damage to the seal bore (dings, dents, gouges or other imperfections) will distort the seal casing and allow leakage past the outer edge of the rear axle drive pinion seal.

The rear axle drive pinion seal can be torn, cut or gouged if it is not assembled carefully. The spring that holds the rear axle drive pinion seal against the rear axle universal joint flange (4851) may be knocked out, allowing leakage past the lip.

The rubber lip can harden (like plastic) with cracks at the oil lip contact point, especially in presence of high temperatures. The contact point on the rear axle universal joint flange is usually black, indicating excessive heat. Marks, nicks, gouges or rough surface texture on the seal journal of the rear axle universal joint flange will also cause leaks. Excessive rear axle drive pinion seal wear will be noted. The rear axle universal joint flange should be replaced if any of these conditions exist.

Metal chips or sand trapped at the sealing lip also may cause oil leaks. This can cause a wear groove on the rear axle universal joint flange and heavy pinion seal wear.

When any seal leaks, confirm that air passes freely through vent hose and fitting. Clean out as needed.

Axle Shaft (Wheel) Seals

Axle shaft oil seals are susceptible to the same kinds of damage as rear axle drive pinion seals if improperly installed. The seal bore must be clean and the lip handled carefully to avoid cutting or tearing it. Axle shaft journal surface must be free of nicks, gouges and rough surface texture.

Casting Porosity (Holes in Casting)

Occasionally there will be a rear axle housing (4010) leak through small holes in the cast axle housing. These holes (casting leakage) are caused by gas bubbles in the casting process and are known technically as a porous condition or porosity.

There are two recommended types of service:

Peen in a small amount of body lead. Seal the hole with Loctite® 290 or equivalent meeting Ford specification M3D35-A(E).

In larger holes (or pockets), drill a shallow hole and tap it for a small setscrew. Install the setscrew and seal it over with Locktite® 290 or equivalent meeting Ford specification M3D35-A(E).

Weld Leaks

Most minor weld leaks can be corrected with Locktite® 290 or equivalent meeting Ford specification M3D35-A(E). This includes the "puddle" or fill welds that join the axle tube to the center casting on integral axles. They sometimes leak and can be sealed easily. If a weld is broken, the rear axle housing must be replaced. The alignment is too critical for field service.
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Old 08-23-2011, 10:54 AM   #7
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Sure sounds like a bent tube to me. It doesn't have to be bent much to cause a leak...or a broken axle shaft for that matter. Our biggest defect on those axle was always seal leaks anyway.
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Old 08-23-2011, 07:29 PM   #8
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Bronco Info: 1989 F150 XLT Lariat, 4x4, D44 SAS, 9" rear axle, 8" lift, 35's. 5.8 EFI bored 40 over, AOD trans
I thought the housing might be bent, so I took it to a certified Ford mechanic I know, He says it goes together too good for the housing to be bent.

Also If it make a difference the outside edge of my tires are not touching the road, I can't tell by looking at it but I live on a dirt road, and the dirt/dust does not get on the outside edge of the tire.

Again I run a 35*12.5*15 BFG AT.

Could anything be causing the axles to be lower at the pumpkin then the outside.

BTW Thanks for all the input and help
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Old 08-23-2011, 07:42 PM   #9
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Not true. We used to bend them all the time. Twist 'em..rip 'em apart...smash 'em but bending was always done for testing. I'll admit they are incredibly strong but like everything else made of mild steel they can be bent. One of the worst things you can do to an axle is to jack it up by the center...on a 9" it's the banjo on a 8.8 it's the cast center. That will eventually bend it...even if it's ever so slightly. Maybe a wheel was really hit hard on rocks or something like that to bend it down in the middle causing the edges of the tires to ride up. You sure your tires aren't overinflated?
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Old 08-23-2011, 08:47 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SCRebel View Post
Could anything be causing the axles to be lower at the pumpkin then the outside.
Yes, it is bent. Get a new housing.
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Old 08-23-2011, 09:08 PM   #11
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Yes, it is bent. Get a new housing.
Oh boy

Too bad you don't live around here. There was a guy at the local flea market last weekend selling Ford 9" axles complete for $100. He had about 10-12 on a trailer.
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Old 08-24-2011, 10:35 AM   #12
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Ok thanks guys.
There is a scrap yard around here that take the 9" rears out and sits them to the side, truck or car. They sell them for $100, Its actually where I got the 9" under my truck from.

Its there any signs that will tell me the housing is bent by looking at it. I hate to sink $100 in a axle plus bearings and seals just to have another bent housing.

Would I be better off putting the 8.8 back under my tuck?

I am going to talk to the manager also and see if he will give me another one, since this one is defective.

And my tires are inflated to 35psi, what it calls for
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Old 08-24-2011, 11:58 AM   #13
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Take a long straight edge...like a metal yardstick and lay it on the flat top of the banjo and out almost to the flange then measure from the bottom of the straight edge to the top of the tube near the weld and near the flange. Both measurments should be exactly the same on both sides(ideally). However that is nearly impossible. Close is good. At the factory they were measured in a press that had a big fork on it and a hinged, lift up gauge. The operator would put the housing in the press, bring the fork down and bend the housing slightly and then check it for straightness. It usually took a couple of tries to get it straight.

8.8 is good but not at all like the 9".
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Old 08-24-2011, 12:57 PM   #14
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Or take a level and level one of the tubes and check the other to see if it is level. I actually would do both a level and straight edge and rotate the diff around and check in several spots.
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Old 08-24-2011, 03:46 PM   #15
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Bronco Info: 1989 F150 XLT Lariat, 4x4, D44 SAS, 9" rear axle, 8" lift, 35's. 5.8 EFI bored 40 over, AOD trans
Ok, Thanks guys. The main reason I want the 9" Is for it toughtness, and the fact that I can put a reverse cut ring and pinion and flip the drive shaft yoke to the top of the axle housing.
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Old 08-24-2011, 05:24 PM   #16
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Don't think that's gonna work Reb. The bolt pattern on the pig is not symetrical and the ring gear would hit hump on the back. You can however flip the entire axle. Have to change spring seats and shock brackets but that could work. You'd still have to change the ring and pinion to a reverse cut.
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Old 08-24-2011, 09:32 PM   #17
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Oh yea, I forgot about the hump in the housing.

I heard someone was making reverse cut ring and pinion and thought about flipping the third member, But that won't work.

I did some further searching and they do make reverse cut ring and pinion for the 9" but you have to have a special third member b/c it won't fit on the stock third member.
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Old 08-24-2011, 09:57 PM   #18
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I guess I don't see why a reverse cut gear set wouldn't just bolt right on to case and fit the pig. Same size. You'd probably be better off flipping the whole axle? It's pretty easy to change spring seats and shock brackets. Only thing is oiling the pinion but I'm sure the maker of the gears would know how to go about doing that.
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Old 08-25-2011, 09:59 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nevadagary View Post
I guess I don't see why a reverse cut gear set wouldn't just bolt right on to case and fit the pig. Same size. You'd probably be better off flipping the whole axle? It's pretty easy to change spring seats and shock brackets. Only thing is oiling the pinion but I'm sure the maker of the gears would know how to go about doing that.
It would be better off flipping the axle. What they said was the reverse cut would oil the pinion, and that the reverse cut ring and pinion would fit into the housing and third member casting, but that the reverse ring and pinion needed a special carrier.

Most likely I will just leave it like it is, (flipped the right way). I dont rock crawl. Just mud and deep ruts.
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Old 08-25-2011, 01:02 PM   #20
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Ata boy! Unless you're going on the rocks a regular axle will be just fine.
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