Bronco Safari 2016!!!!!
Now this is where I start getting into the carnage that I’m “famous” for
This year we had my fullsize, Tyler’s fullsize, and my buddy Dylan, who borrowed my Bronco last year, had put together his own fullsize.
Our first day we tried to make it to Top of the World. As I was turning off the pavement by Dewy Bridge, there was a loud pop and I noticed my rear tires would spin independently now, but I figured I had just lost my welds on my spider gears, and could probably still make it through the trail. But at the first obstacle, once I put a load on the axle, it started jumping teeth and losing drive to the rear axle
So the rear driveline was pulled and we headed back to camp in front wheel drive. Here is what we found when we got the rear axle apart
Not only had the welds on the spider gears failed, but one of the carrier bearing caps had broken in half, allowing the carrier and ring gear to deflect away from the pinion. This is where I learned, if you have spare parts, BRING THEM. I had an entire spare 9” third member at home, in Nevada. But it was big and heavy and I didn’t think I would need it.
So I had my dad run to my house to pull bearing caps to overnight to me, and we went around town looking for someone who might have parts to get back up and running today. After talking to enough people we wound up getting an address for a guy by the name of Tucker who lived out in the back of town and had a personal junkyard of old beat Fords. After some digging around the back 40 we found a half blown up 3rd member that had enough good parts to get us up and running again, so I gave him $100 and we got back to camp to throw it together.
The next day we went out to try Rusty Nail again
It went pretty smooth up until where Rusty Nail dumps back into Gold Bar Rim. There is a very deceiving ledge to climb right there. I spun tires trying to walk up it, so I gave it a little bump to try and get the rear tire up, and as soon as the rear tires hit, SNAP. Lost drive to the rear driver side tire, so I backed down to a level spot the change the shaft, of which I had a spare of with me. As soon as I got the shaft out I looked down the tube and could see the splines of the shaft twisted off in the carrier, as well as another blown up carrier bearing cap, of which I didn't have another spare. So for the second day in a row the rear driveshaft came off and we had to try to limp back to camp in front wheel drive.
I had to be pulled on a strap for a few obstacles, which went alright until we got to the waterfall on Gold Bar. There wasn't a good angle to winch me up easily, so I got a bit violent and tried to bounce up and promptly broke a front u-joint and took the inner and outer shafts with it
With some fancy winching, we were able to winch my Bronco up the hill so I could change the front shaft, which I had a spare of, and get back to camp in front wheel drive