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new to the forum but have owned my bronco for about a year now...

just the other day, it started making a very low rumble/growl from the rear
of the truck and it gets louder with vehicle speed. can notice at approx 30+ mph. trying to figure out if it is the driveshaft/u-joint or bearing noise inside the rear axle.

i removed the driveshaft and found all 3 joints are tight and have no play,
however the slip joint (where the shaft gets longer/shorter with suspension travel) has some play in it-almost like a worn u-joint. is this normal?

once the driveshaft was out i checked to see if the pinion bearings had any excessive play by pushing/prying on the pinion flange and got no movement at all out of it.

with the driveshaft installed and tires spinning at 30+ mph it seems like all the noise is coming from the pinion bearings. just hard to tell if its from the driveshaft or the bearings itself.

trying to figure this out asap...money is tight and i want to go with my friends to the sand dunes in a month. any help would be great!
 

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I don't think there should be any play in that slip joint / yoke / whatever. Is the dust boot still on it? You can get some synthetic grease and lube it up for very cheap, assuming you don't already have any. There are threads on here that outline the process.
 
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