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View Full Version : what do you think of my spindle?


nakman
07-11-2009, 05:28 PM
My DS wheel bearing has a history of coming loose. I have historically tightened it about once a year, between services.. last time was last summer just before Rubicon when I gave the inner nut about a 1/8 turn, which was enough to remove the play I could feel when I yanked on the tire.

I had the 80 up on a lift last Wednesday and felt the tire again, and again it was loose. So today I got the parts together and commenced repacking both sides.



This is the 5th or 6th time I've looked at this spindle, and it's worse than it's ever been. It took about 20 in & out attempts with the WD40 in between to work the inner nut off, something got in there and buggered those threads up. Also the star washer had turned somehow, the little tab was no longer in the groove :(. My theory is that 6 or so years ago when I first noticed the loose wheel bearing, the larger bearing wore into the spindle somehow, and created a little step that it can't get shoved past. So now when I repack an retighten this side it doesn't really make it back to the sweet spot. I set these bearings on the tight side- any tighter gets the drive flange really hot- but still a year later they're loose again.


I don't remember the ding on the top, where it transitions to the larger diameter, though that's not really a functional surface. You can see where the inner bearing rides in the picture below. I've got new big nuts, and a new star washer. I was planning on repacking the bearings again and slapping it all together, then dealing with the spindle maybe next year when I want to do the birfs again (they were last done 30k miles ago) but now I'm not so sure I shouldn't just go get me a new spindle. who would like to comment..

60wag
07-11-2009, 06:17 PM
Is the surface that the inner bearing seats against chewed up? If it is, I'd replace the whole spindle.

Red_Chili
07-11-2009, 06:37 PM
I don't see anything that I would suspect would lead to the issue you are having... but then, spindles are not that expensive. Sure why not?

What does the HUB look like? I would sooner expect something with it.

wesintl
07-11-2009, 07:51 PM
when is the last time you replaced the bearings?

nakman
07-11-2009, 08:07 PM
Ok, thank you for the replies. I did a little more inspection, and I've definitely got some steps worn into the OD of the spindle.. it's worse on the small bearing side, using my thumbnailcrometer I measure it about .004". The one in back is about half that.

AFAIK, these are the original wheel bearings. 165,000 miles... only the last 60k of that was under my care and this would have been the third time I'd repacked them. No telling what the first guy did...

nakman
07-11-2009, 08:12 PM
Few more pictures.. I may pop the PS later tonight but then again my hands are clean now and I'm kind of liking that, so could be tomorrow. But at this point I'm leaning towards at least one new set of bearings and 1 new spindle, then I guess I'll do the birf too since it'll be out in my hand. Depending on what I find on the other side, possibly double that. :mad:


I'm not doing the trunion bearings though those are a 120K item, IMO.. still, more than I was hoping to get into. :(


edit: and new spindles are about $250 per side. But they come with bearings on the inside instead of bushings..

farnhamstj
07-12-2009, 11:26 AM
That spindle looks done to me.

nakman
07-12-2009, 12:19 PM
I popped the passenger side, and it's significantly better looking. All the surfaces are smooth, plus the bearing grease was still red. I think water got in around the grease seal via the groovy surface on the other side, that's why that stuff was so black looking and watery. The stuff on the passenger side was much newer looking.

And my inner seal was holding great, the stuff in the DS birf looked fresh out of the moly tube. Oh well it's mixed with gear oil now since the axle's out..

So I'm going to do a new spindle and new set of wheel bearings for the driver's side, and just put the passenger side back together with a repack of the bearings. I'll be back in three years to do it all over again, may will do the passenger side spindle at that time so it's not jealous.

farnhamstj
07-12-2009, 01:21 PM
sounds like a good plan to me.

Uncle Ben
07-12-2009, 03:09 PM
Plenty of spare grease packed into the cavity between the bearings! Guess the theory would be that centrifugal force will make it creep into the bearings? Haven't seen that happen yet regardless of how fast one drives. Always been a good laugh for me when I see folks pack the cavity that way!

Red_Chili
07-12-2009, 10:53 PM
I would replace bearing sets in pairs by axle... especially if you think they have 165K miles on them! :eek:

Beater
07-13-2009, 07:38 AM
replace it - all new bearings. Done

nakman
07-13-2009, 09:19 AM
Plenty of spare grease packed into the cavity between the bearings! Guess the theory would be that centrifugal force will make it creep into the bearings? Haven't seen that happen yet regardless of how fast one drives. Always been a good laugh for me when I see folks pack the cavity that way!

It's not new grease running into the bearing, but stopping the packed grease from running out of the bearing. Didn't you just have one blow up on you? :eek:

Beater
07-13-2009, 12:34 PM
It's not new grease running into the bearing, but stopping the packed grease from running out of the bearing. Didn't you just have one blow up on you? :eek:

lol!

Red_Chili
07-13-2009, 12:50 PM
When you are as smoooooooth as UB... your grease never gets hot enough to flow.

Nev. Uh. Nawsuh.

Uncle Ben
07-13-2009, 02:59 PM
It's not new grease running into the bearing, but stopping the packed grease from running out of the bearing. Didn't you just have one blow up on you? :eek:

Ahh good to know. The truth is it's a waste of grease and also impedes air flow making the bearings run hotter. Nope....pinion bearings don't needs to be packed.


Have never roasted a spindle bearing and never had a lug nut come loose!

lol!

Sold your T-100 yet?

nakman
07-13-2009, 04:21 PM
Wait, so wheel bearings are air cooled? That little pocket of air between the hot bearings, hot spindle, and hub that's bolted to the brake rotor is supposed to cool the bearings?

DaveInDenver
07-13-2009, 04:34 PM
Wait, so wheel bearings are air cooled? That little pocket of air between the hot bearings, hot spindle, and hub that's bolted to the brake rotor is supposed to cool the bearings?
The pocket of air is there so the spindle-grooving-troll watchman can breath. Duh. If you pack it full of grease he suffocates and can't do his job of patrolling, thus keeping the spindle safe from ruin. You obviously had too much grease and he didn't make it.

nakman
07-13-2009, 04:48 PM
The pocket of air is there so the spindle-grooving-troll watchman can breath. Duh. If you pack it full of grease he suffocates and can't do his job of patrolling, thus keeping the spindle safe from ruin. You obviously had too much grease and he didn't make it.

Hmm, ok. So tell me this- I've got a greasy bearing spinning in a closed cavity, with an inner diameter that's larger than the bearing. Wouldn't the mass of the bearing grease migrate towards the outermost portion of that circal, via centrifical force when the whole thing turns into a little tilt-a-whirl? Isn't there some sort of law of equilibrium that says areas of greater concentration will migrates to areas of lesser concentration? One of Newton's laws, perhaps..

So if I pack a bearing full of grease then put it right next to an open air space, then spin the thing for say 10,000 hours, what's keeping that grease in the bearing from not oozing over to the more attractive and higher gravitational-pulling air space? And then when all is at rest, what could possibly make that grease travel back uphill back to the bearing?

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uploads/Annotated_birfield_diagram.jpg

So filling that cavity up with grease to me insures that more grease stays in the bearings, since there's no where for the grease in the bearings to run to when things start spinning. I'm still open to arguments though, I haven't repacked either side yet.. :beer:

Uncle Ben
07-13-2009, 04:50 PM
Wait, so wheel bearings are air cooled? That little pocket of air between the hot bearings, hot spindle, and hub that's bolted to the brake rotor is supposed to cool the bearings?

No but they generate heat and heat expands. Grease is an excellent heat sink but not to great of a heat dissipater!

Uncle Ben
07-13-2009, 04:57 PM
Hmm, ok. So tell me this- I've got a greasy bearing spinning in a closed cavity, with an inner diameter that's larger than the bearing. Wouldn't the mass of the bearing grease migrate towards the outermost portion of that circal, via centrifical force when the whole thing turns into a little tilt-a-whirl? Isn't there some sort of law of equilibrium that says areas of greater concentration will migrates to areas of lesser concentration? One of Newton's laws, perhaps..

So if I pack a bearing full of grease then put it right next to an open air space, then spin the thing for say 10,000 hours, what's keeping that grease in the bearing from not oozing over to the more attractive and higher gravitational-pulling air space? And then when all is at rest, what could possibly make that grease travel back uphill back to the bearing?

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/uploads/Annotated_birfield_diagram.jpg

So filling that cavity up with grease to me insures that more grease stays in the bearings, since there's no where for the grease in the bearings to run to when things start spinning. I'm still open to arguments though, I haven't repacked either side yet.. :beer:

Who can argue with Newton? Notice which way the tilt of the rollers are? That is why there is a flat metal retainer washer on the outside of the spindle and a seal next to the bearing on the inside of the spindle. Like Newton suggests liquid does not travel up hill! Although gearlube does defy the basic principle as it clings and climbs....but thats a different argument.

Kipper
07-13-2009, 05:03 PM
via centrifical force when the whole thing turns into a little tilt-a-whirl?

you mean lack of centripetal force (http://www.regentsprep.org/Regents/physics/phys06/bcentrif/centrif.htm)

:ranger:

AxleIke
07-13-2009, 05:07 PM
you mean lack of centripetal force (http://www.regentsprep.org/Regents/physics/phys06/bcentrif/centrif.htm)

:ranger:

Just about to post about the same thing.

Rzeppa
07-13-2009, 07:16 PM
I would replace the spindle if it were my truck and I planned to keep it a while. Probably the bearings too just because.

There is a cavity in between the inner and outer wheel bearings specifically to be a grease reservoir. The centrepetal force keeps the bearings full of grease. The FSM shows how this works. There is a nominal range of how much to fill the cavity, not too much, not too little.

A substance (grease in this instance) will ALWAYS sink and conduct heat equally. It is a function of the substance's specific heat and thermal resistance (or conduction, depending on how you arrange the equation). The other variables in a specific application will involve the mass of the substance, the surface area ratio to total volume, the thermal resistance between it and what it is in contact with (for conduction, the main thermal path in this application) and the delta T if you wish to calculate a thermal rise over ambient.

Red_Chili
07-14-2009, 12:59 PM
you mean lack of centripetal force (http://www.regentsprep.org/Regents/physics/phys06/bcentrif/centrif.htm)

:ranger:
Keep your bugs to yourself.
What goes 99-clunk... 99-clunk... 99-clunk?



















A centipede with a wooden leg.
I was very popular in kindergarten.

Red_Chili
07-14-2009, 01:01 PM
...The FSM shows how this works. There is a nominal range of how much to fill the cavity, not too much, not too little.
...

It takes a pretty good argument to convince me the FSM is wrong. We've come a long way since the early Japanese technical documentation.

Not that the FSM is divinely inspired... I've been known to depart from orthodoxy... but it takes a darn good argument.

Them yoda boyz dun thunk it out purty good.

nakman
07-14-2009, 01:38 PM
All sounds good, and it seems like my grease level was right at the level of the inner races, which is just what the FSM says (link below, Chili please note torque specs for future reference.)


edit: ok, maybe a little more... :rolleyes:

nakman
07-14-2009, 01:42 PM
Oh, and thanks for the refresher on force, Kipper.. neat little illustration there. Maybe they shoud update that cassette tape to something a little more modern though, like a floppy disk. :)

Rzeppa
07-14-2009, 11:40 PM
Oh, and thanks for the refresher on force, Kipper.. neat little illustration there. Maybe they shoud update that cassette tape to something a little more modern though, like a floppy disk. :)

LOL! I finally tossed out those cassettes I had lying around after I sold my VIC20. And then there were the 8" floppies that wouldn't fit my 5.25 drive...

nakman
07-16-2009, 10:03 PM
Ok, so I got some parts... one invoice from Boulder, the other from Stevenson West..

New spindle is pretty trick, the roller bearings on the inside look pretty cool I'm sure my full time front axle will appreciate those :D

wesintl
07-16-2009, 10:10 PM
you know you're going to have to replace the other side now... you can't have one side with a bearing and the other side without :eek:

;)

nakman
07-16-2009, 10:17 PM
I know, I know.. but at least the bearing side is the long side right? If that counts for anything.. I thought about it but the bill was really starting to add up, would have much rather installed one of these (http://www.marlincrawler.com/tech/armor/rear-bumper-installation-pictures) on the Taco this week, heck it would have been cheaper. At least the labor is free. Messy, but free. :o

But ah well, the mighty 80 will soon roll again! :bowdown:

Red_Chili
07-17-2009, 01:15 PM
Ooooooo.... TSB heaven. You got the NEEDLE BEARING fix!!

<Napoleon Dynamite voice> Lucky!

corsair23
07-17-2009, 01:51 PM
That thing sure is purdy Tim :D

So the roller bearings on the inside replace a separate bearing in the spindle or is that just part of the new design?

nakman
07-17-2009, 02:00 PM
That thing sure is purdy Tim :D

So the roller bearings on the inside replace a separate bearing in the spindle or is that just part of the new design?

it's an all new design.. well not that new, has been out for at least 5 years? It's the only new spindle you can get now... so in the old version you've got that brass bushing with the grease grooves, in the new version that's been replaced by the bearings.

It's probably possible to just buy the bearings and press out your bushings somehow, I dunno, I needed the whole shebang so I didn't ask.

Red_Chili
07-17-2009, 02:14 PM
It would be very interesting to see if the bushing with needle bearings is available separately. It would be worth it. That was the fix for the cold weather GROAN noises that the ADD 4Runners would make after a few years. Essentially, a fairly high frequency chatter.

Schlick.

corsair23
07-17-2009, 03:16 PM
It would be very interesting to see if the bushing with needle bearings is available separately. It would be worth it.

Definitely! The front end of the LX needs a "rebuild" so now would be the time to look it that :)

nakman
07-18-2009, 09:51 PM
Ok got it all buttoned up today. two observations:

The new spindle/new bearing fit is TIGHT. took me quite a while to massage the outer bearing onto the spindle... there's not much difference in the ID of the bearing vs. the OD of the spindle that's for sure. it's on there though.

And my outer nuts are a good 2mm further out than they use to be. Don't suggest the races aren't seated- they are.. what changed was new races/bearings, new thrust washers, new star washers, and new nuts. I guess all of that old stuff had squashed down somehow, most likely the bearings. Now the outer nut is barely on the spindle, there's not much thread showing, where I had 1-2mm of threads before outside the outer nut. It's the same on both sides.

I'm going to drive about 75 miles tomorrow then will check the front tires for play or heat afterwards...