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LETSROLL
04-11-2010, 05:39 PM
Hi All,

I have a mysterious clicking/ratcheting noise that comes from underneath the truck (1997 80 series) when turning. It seems to come from the center of the truck (differential?) but I can't be sure. Does this sound familiar to anyone? I'm sure it needs to be inspected, but I'd like to go into the shop kind of knowing what to look for.

Thanks

Romer
04-11-2010, 06:04 PM
First guess is your front axle needs to be re-built

http://forum.ih8mud.com/80-series-tech/78276-front-axle-rebuild-faq.html

What do the backside of the Knuckles look like? If they are covered in sludge, thats a good sign

Here is a side view of the knuckle broken down to help orient you. If you look at where the axle goes into the tire, thats what I am talking about

http://forum.ih8mud.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=341307&stc=1&d=1248147116

TIMZTOY
04-11-2010, 07:19 PM
its hard to diag a noise without hearing it.. id reccomend taking it into a shop, just describe the noise the best as possible expectually how and when it happens.. what speed, braking, accelrating, turning, costing, and make sure that its on the work order..that way the tech can duplicate it.. becase alot of times expectually at my work that info is lost at the service writer and is never given to the technician.. to prevent the lost info id ask to speak directlly to the tech..

corsair23
04-11-2010, 07:37 PM
x2 on what Romer said...I'd guess one or both of your birfs/birfields is/are clicking. Front axle service for sure sounds like something in your future (either yourself of $$ to someone else - of which there are several in the club that will do the work for you cheaper than a dealership will) and when you have it apart inspect the birfs for damage and if they look "ok" then swapping sides should hopefully rid you of the clicking and extend the life the birfs....

Here are somes pics that might help:

Looking at the backside of the knuckle (this is the part in the picture Romer posted but with everthing still "around" it) you can see signs that the inner axle seal is leaking - notice the grease on the knuckle is wetter than moly grease typically would be - sort of "soupy" looking indicating gear oil is getting past the inner axle seal, mixing with the moly grease in the birf/knuckle, and oozing past the wiper seal components (rubber + felt + metal). This was my DS knuckle...It wasn't horrible but I felt it was time to be serviced.

18095


This what a birf/birfield looks like sans the cage, star, and balls, and of course sans all the molly grease :)

18096

Inner part of the birf - note the wear marks or grooves. IIRC these grooves are what cause the "clicking" noise as the balls move. Swapping the birfields from side to side changes where the balls wear.

18097


This is the birf "star" - note again the wear marks or grooves

18098


Birfield with the cage, star, and balls installed, packed with moly grease, and inner axle back in place. You can also see where the axle has been "riding" on the inner axle seal (wear area just above the birf on the axle itself - like ring marks)

18099


Here is a MUD thread (http://forum.ih8mud.com/80-series-tech/279304-separating-reassembling-birfield-inner-axle-assemblies.html) on taking birfs apart and putting them back together - A must do when swapping side to side and repacking with moly grease IMO but I'm more of a web mechanic than a good mechanic :hill:

LETSROLL
04-11-2010, 08:38 PM
Thanks Ken, Tim & Jeff. Great advice. I'll take a look at the backside of the knuckle tomorrow. I bet you guys are spot on!

Romer
04-11-2010, 09:02 PM
its hard to diag a noise without hearing it.. id reccomend taking it into a shop, just describe the noise the best as possible expectually how and when it happens.. what speed, braking, accelrating, turning, costing, and make sure that its on the work order..that way the tech can duplicate it.. becase alot of times expectually at my work that info is lost at the service writer and is never given to the technician.. to prevent the lost info id ask to speak directlly to the tech..


If it's a front axle job, I wouldn't take it to any shop. It's something easy to not get quite right. There are several shops around that I would trust, but it's a great opportunity to learn how to do something key that you might need to fux on the trail. Lots of folks around who could help you, Last weekend you could have gone to the WBPP party and had lots of people help you

corsair23
04-11-2010, 09:41 PM
Plus if you have 2 80s, doing it yourself will save you a ton of :twocents:

I had Ben (ThreeWheelBen) do my 80 a few years ago and he was gracious enough to let me help, watch, and learn. That went a long way to my education and understanding and gave me just enough confidence to tackle the job on my LX when the time came last year. In reality it is not a difficult job with the right tools and help, but it is a REALLY messy job :hill:

Take some pictures of both sides and post them up for some opinions. You also might want to check the grease level in the knuckles...Remove the square plug (that might be hiding under years of grease, muck, and road grime - so clean the area off first so you don't drop any of that gunk down into the knuckle) and then use something long and thin to poke down into the hole. Not an exact science by any means but if you come up dry (no grease) or with soup on the stick, that will help the diagnosis...If the knuckles are totally dry, get a grease gun and several tubes or more of moly grease and pump that stuff into the hole...Dry knuckles/birfs = bad

nakman
04-11-2010, 10:07 PM
.... This was my DS knuckle...It wasn't horrible but I felt it was time to be serviced.

18095





ya think? man I'd hate to see what a you call horrible. :bolt:

corsair23
04-11-2010, 10:16 PM
ya think? man I'd hate to see what a you call horrible. :bolt:

Oh you've seen the pictures of "horrible" on MUD :hill:

In my defense, the auditor from the aftermarket warranty company claimed this was normal leakage, at least two different times/inspections :rolleyes: - Took me almost 2 years but I finally got them to pony up the money for ALL the parts for a full/complete front axle service (including new bearings etc.) if I paid for/did the labor. Cost of parts quoted and paid to me was of course the full retail cost :D. - I think they just got tired of me calling, emailing, sending pictures, and taking the truck up to Kuni (free wash svc when you dropped the rig off don't you know...)

They were willing to spend $1200 (or was it $1500, can't remember) bucks for Kuni to basically do a bearing repack :confused: - Seriously...They just couldn't understand that a repack would do nothing for this problem and was a waste of $$ and time. Good thing for me that my warranty covered "seals" :hill: even if they were a bugger of a company to get to live up to their warranty.

LETSROLL
04-12-2010, 10:53 AM
Well it looks like you all were right. Here's a couple of pics that tell the tale!

rover67
04-12-2010, 11:06 AM
Yikes! rip those suckers apart and get some fresh grease in there! with the support from teh folsk here you should ahve all the info you need to do it yourself. Takes some time and is messy but totally doable.

corsair23
04-12-2010, 01:00 PM
Crikey :eek:

At a minimum, run out and buy 4 tubes (or cans) of moly grease and a grease gun if you don't have one...Pump at least a tube into each knuckle, maybe two (you can see the square plug in your first plug that needs to come out to pump the grease in - your DS plug looks suprising clean of gunk btw).

The concern IMO is that the knuckle balls look "dry", meaning no grease. The wiper seals do a good job of keeping the grease to a min on the knuckle balls but a thin coating providing lubrication is what you are wanting to see. Hopefully the inside isn't completely dry but no real way to know that without taking it apart unless you have a fancy, and really small, inspection cam and light you can get into the hole :hill:

If you aren't sure what great to get, this is what I use:

http://www.valvoline.com/admin/p65.png

Either get the tubes to drop into the gun or buy the tubs and pack the gun yourself (messy job IMO)