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94 Bronco, 351 W
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all, new to the forum here.

I've been rebuilding my fathers 94 bronco, 351W. He left it to me 3 years ago; finally have it looking flossy and driving like a champ, then the below started occurring over the summer, first problem since I inherited it that I can't seem to figure out...feeling kind of dumb here. Any help is appreciated!

Started hearing a click/tic noise from the drivers side front wheel.
Its about 5 clicks per rotation, I've taken it apart numerous times and cannot find the cause.
It sounds like its coming from the hub assembly area, I replaced the wheel bearings and cups just in case, still clicking.
I do not think its the CV, noise doesn't vary when I turn the wheel, and no popping or clunking.
It is quiet for the first 50-60 ft or so after driving, then it starts up.
Noise is either so quiet or non existent that it cannot be heard in reverse.
Is heard in 4x4 and rear wheel drive, heard in drive and neutral, under power or costing with the engine off, hubs locked and unlocked (so all conditions).
I removed the auto-locking hub mechanism, it still clicked ( so i don't think its the hub lock)
It goes away when lifted up (which is making diagnostics hard), it has to be on the ground and under load to occur.

I took my brakes off and hung them up with a 2x4 wedged in there to try to eliminate the possibility of break components clapping or clicking, the noise was much much quieter...but still there. (makes me think the breaks are exacerbating the problem, but not the problem itself)

As I said, replaced the wheel bearings, cups and seal.
When I was replacing the wheel bearing I noticed the spacer and the outer wheel bearing adjust-nut / lock nut ( or spindle lock nut, whatever its called, see picture below) was worn pretty bad on one of its inside corners. Also noticed the outer most lock nut came off a little easy, wasn't falling off and did take a little power to crack, but didn't feel like she was set to 150 ft/lbs, also when I reassembled I was only able to get that outer spindle nut to 90#s, just couldn't get good leverage on her and the castle socket kept slipping.

Any thoughts are welcome.

I figured someone on here might have run into this scenario and may know EXACTLY what this mystery is.
Any help is appreciated, shes grounded right now, don't want to be tempted to cause any more damage.

I've got a video of the click here on youtube:

I've got a video of it NOT clicking in reverse here on youtube:

Bee.e

Bearing Auto part Hardware accessory
Bearing Auto part Finger Titanium ring Hardware accessory
 

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1986 Bronco, 351w, Edelbrock aluminum top end, Holley 600, 4" BDS lift, 35" Maxxis Razr's, stuff..
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Have you checked the brake pad retainers / clips etc? Calipers?


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Premium Member
1986 Bronco, 351w, Edelbrock aluminum top end, Holley 600, 4" BDS lift, 35" Maxxis Razr's, stuff..
Joined
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2,650 Posts
Whoops, just read your comment about removing the brakes, hmmmm


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1986 Bronco, 351w, Edelbrock aluminum top end, Holley 600, 4" BDS lift, 35" Maxxis Razr's, stuff..
Joined
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2,650 Posts
Have you confirmed axles are not still turning with hubs not engaged?

Still makes noise with locking hub taken off?

Have you had the spindle off?


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96 5.8, 4.10 gears with truetrac 4 inch lift, 15x10 with 35s, 50 series flow master, 3 inch catback.
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61 Posts
I had a similar issue after replacing the stock warn hubs with warn premium. Turned out to be the hub spring was causing it to click and I trimmed the spring. The sound went away. Talked with a mechanic friend and he advised that it does occur with some warn hubs and the answer is to trim the spring. Not sure that would be your case but throwing it in for a possibility.
 

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1989 Eddie Bauer 5.8, C6, True Trac diffs, 4.56 gears, 4" C&T lift, 130A 3G Alt, 35" Grabber AT2s
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798 Posts
Those are nice shiny wheels. Are they new? Do they have those god awful stick on weights on the back? Have you inspected the weights? Might be hitting a bracket or some such thing. Give those a look
 

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No answers - just random thoughts.

Wheels have 5 lug studs.
I believe your spindle has 5 studs.
The ABS tone ring, although having more than five teeth, is a possibility.

Is the clicking evenly spaced out per tire rotation?
 

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Maybe the disk brake heat shield is slightly bent inwards and rubbing on the rim? had it happen on my nissan before


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94 Bronco, 351 W
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Have you confirmed axles are not still turning with hubs not engaged?

Still makes noise with locking hub taken off?

Have you had the spindle off?


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I've confirmed the axles are not turning. (several times, kept thinking maybe the u-joints were clicking)
I've taken the locking hub off, noise was still there.
Haven't touched the spindle yet, wasn't sure if the bearing in there could be the cause since the axle isn't rotating.

Thanks for the ideas, please keep them coming!

B.
 

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94 Bronco, 351 W
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I had a similar issue after replacing the stock warn hubs with warn premium. Turned out to be the hub spring was causing it to click and I trimmed the spring. The sound went away. Talked with a mechanic friend and he advised that it does occur with some warn hubs and the answer is to trim the spring. Not sure that would be your case but throwing it in for a possibility.
Thought this might be the case too, removed the locking hub though and the spring and all that and the sound was still there.

B.
 

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94 Bronco, 351 W
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Those are nice shiny wheels. Are they new? Do they have those god awful stick on weights on the back? Have you inspected the weights? Might be hitting a bracket or some such thing. Give those a look
Not new, 20 years old if you believe it! I had used some chrome cleaner/polish right before the incident, that's probably why they look so flossy.

Thanks for the suggestion, gave it a look. Doesn't seem to be the case.
There's no way for them to interact, the rims are 17's and there is about 2+ inches of clearance, same thing with the disk brake shield. Thought maybe it was bent and clipping the rotor or bent and making contact with the rim.

B.
 

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94 Bronco, 351 W
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
No answers - just random thoughts.

Wheels have 5 lug studs.
I believe your spindle has 5 studs.
The ABS tone ring, although having more than five teeth, is a possibility.

Is the clicking evenly spaced out per tire rotation?

So I took her for a test drive to get a better idea of the clicking.
When she first started clicking (a few months ago) I heard maybe 1 or 2 clicks per rotation. It eventually ramped up to 4-5.
Just took her for a drive, sometimes its 3 per rotations, sometimes its up to 5. They are not perfectly spaced clicks, but there is a pattern.

Another thing: the ticking almost seems like a tic-toc or a click-clack, as if something is moving and then moving back, getting stuck and then unstuck, or sticking against something and then un-sticking.

I did think perhaps the lugs had something to do with it, either directly (loose) or indirectly (as in whatever is causing the noise meets resistance when the wheel rotates and that extra pressure is put on the stud, stud won't give cause its fastened properly so something else that's loose gives and clicks...??? ( I do have wheel spacers, but they seem tight as well) Just some thoughts.

I'm going to take everything people say this week into consideration and go out there and "re-diagnose" her, I'm probably mistaken on one of these things and incorrectly dismissed it as the cause.

But please keep the suggestions coming. Everything helps!

B.
 

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I've had my front wheels off the ground and have no noticeable clicks like you notice. But right before I enter the garage, I drive next to my travel trailer, and I can hear clicks when passing it (I'm assuming an echo). It is on my passenger side as well, although the layout of things prevents me from trying the same exercise with the driver's side facing the trailer. I can't hear anything at speed in the neighborhood or highway, although my rig isn't exactly a testament to quietness.
 

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1986 Bronco, 351w, Edelbrock aluminum top end, Holley 600, 4" BDS lift, 35" Maxxis Razr's, stuff..
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2,650 Posts
Not the hub since you've pulled it
Not the diff since the shaft isn't turning
Not the ujoint since shaft isn't turning
Only does it under load
Not the rotor or caliper since you've removed caliper and still occurs
You've redone bearings so not those

Are you sure it's coming from the front and not the rear?
 

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jack it up, all 4 corners, put it in 4wd and put it in gear, does the clicking still occur? We're seeing if having weight on the suspension effects it.
 

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By Any chance are your wheels and tires balanced with stick on weights on the inside? I'm noticing those pretty "Flossy" rims, I had a stick on weight that was flapping around, and one that was actually slightly clipping the top of a caliper that drove me insane until I threw it off.
 
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