View Full Version : Interesting find on the front axle

Air Randy
03-06-2011, 08:45 PM
I noticed last week that I had a little 90w weeping off the back of the knuckle on the drivers side front. I was a little disappointed in that because we had put new axle seals in less than 1,000 miles ago when we installed the FJ60 axle housing.

Anyways, I tore into it today. Imagine how surprised I was when I tugged on the birfield and it came out minus the axle:eek:. At first I thought the axle had broke though we had wheeled on it recently and everything was fine. I pulled the axle out and it was OK, and the retainer clip was on the axle too. I slid the axle and birf together and thumped it on the floor. When I pulled on it hard it came apart again, sort of felt like just the suction from the grease was holding it. So I put it together again and really whanged it hard on the floor again. This time I couldn't pull it apart, even when I chucked it up in the vise and really yanked.

So I'm guessing the axle & birf never got assembled correctly when we did the FJ60 housing. I did buy a new, longer axle shaft for that side from Longfield so I'm sure thats what happened. Interesting that it seemed to work fine all of this time and there was no evidence oif any damage to the splines, etc. I think there must have been a little play in the axle that wore out the seal prematurely, or, the axle seal surface wasn't riding in the right place to line up with the seal correctly.

So I installed a new Marlin double axle seal and put it back together. While I was at it I went ahead and installed the new slotted disc rotors and new calipers with metallic pads I had picked up some time back.

I re-packed the wheel bearings on the other side and installed the new brake components. All seems to be well now. You learn something new every day.

03-06-2011, 09:39 PM
Now you know why all those drivers coming the other way were giving you such a wide birth. That FJ60 axle and wheel scooting over into their lane a back all of its own accord periodically. And you thought it was just squirrley tires.

03-06-2011, 09:40 PM
If you didn't have a retainer clip at all, where could that axle even go? It can't shove into the inside of the diff anymore, can it? And it can't exactly go further inside the birfield.. and the splines won't let it go up and down, clip or not. I'm trying to think how having it float back and forth a little bit would cause a leak, unless you've got a groove in it from the inner seal? :confused: was the 90wt and grease all mixed up when you pulled it apart?

J Kimmel
03-06-2011, 09:47 PM
it can slide in enough that it goes past the seal surface on the inner shaft, thats about it. Thus the old "martack" that used to be used so often. instead of using the inner clip, since they are both a PITA to assemble in the garage, and a PITA on the trail when stuff is broken one leaves out the clip and uses a small tack weld on the end of the shaft, so it can only go into the diff so far, and keep the seal surface on the shaft in contact with the seal.

martack = Marlin :)


03-06-2011, 10:23 PM
Cool info, thanks! I didn't know that..