View Full Version : Broken 80 series radius arm hanger

09-02-2012, 08:24 PM
So now that the family is gone, I finally had time to start breaking down the 80 today to access the damage.

I had an occasional death wobble since mid July this summer. Then 3 weeks ago my axle housing started dropping a mixture of 90wt and moly grease from the passenger side radius arm hanger. I feared a large crack had developed in the axle tube.:eek:

After breaking it down today it looks like I may be able to repair the housing with the addition of some caster correction plates to re-enforce the hangers. Glade I did not jump the gun and order a new housing.

Looks like filling the hole should be easy. When the hanger broke off it pulled some of the axle tube weld with it causing the leak. Then its just a matter of lining up the hanger, tack, and install the caster correction plates in as well. Maybe ad some additional gussets? We'll see. I'll pull the caser correction bushings out of the radius arms and install new OEM bushings. I have a set of 30mm lift spacers on the shelf. That will take me to 3"+ lift overall. Caster should be OK. More is better than less, I figure.

Pics of the damage. Will post up progress as the repair proceeds.

09-04-2012, 02:54 PM

Looking forward to seeing the repair process :thumb:

09-05-2012, 12:53 AM
Glad to see it is a repair you can do vs. replacement housing.

09-05-2012, 06:13 AM
Corbet, you may also want to weld up your sway bar tab before you weld this in place. This tab can be broken off and take a brake line out. When this happened to me several years ago, I first welded up the hole, then tacked the bracket in place. I welded inside and out side of the bracket to axle houseing. Welded the brake and all has been good for several years.
Good luck with your project.

09-07-2012, 09:50 AM
Thanks Robbie.

I have a set of Landtank's sway bar tabs for the front axle housing that I have never installed. So I'll weld those in during this repair. After I get Slee's caster plates I'll lay out the overall welding plan. But I'm hoping I can get the OEM bracket reattached pretty solid before adding the caster plates and what ever other creative idea/s I come up for in gussets. I'm planning on adding something to support the knuckle balls too. Kind of like this:

09-09-2012, 12:20 PM
Progress report:

Axle is out. Not too bad. The electronics for ABS and the lockers were honestly the biggest PITA for some reason. Housing is gutted. Need to clean it up and start the welding process. Next weekend... Game starts in a few hours ;)

The guy in Brown should be making a number of visits this week with parts boxes:D

09-11-2012, 07:55 PM
The man in Brown visited today:clap:

I've only got Sunday to work on it this weekend. Packers play Thursday so that helps. Hope to get the hole plugged and the stock hanger welded back on. The prep work will make the difference so I plan to take my time.

09-11-2012, 08:17 PM
Looks like you're re-gearing too? Carl at Nitro is AWESOME!

BTW...my new cargo barrier looks great!

09-11-2012, 09:32 PM
Looks like you're re-gearing too?

Yup, I was planning to do so this summer anyway. When I determined that I'd be welding my existing housing I decided to go ahead and do it. I have to open up the front so no need to waste the knuckle gasket/seal kit just to reopen the housing again in the near future. 4.88's I hope this makes the difference with the camper in tow.

09-12-2012, 12:31 AM
4.88's I hope this makes the difference with the camper in tow.

It won't really but it will feel "peppier" around town :D - Gearing helps a bit but the problem lies with the dog under the hood.

The difference I noticed when towing was that with OD off (as per the manual), your RPMs are quite a bit higher and towing at 70+ is a little "buzzy" because of it. But good call on doing it how while you have everything apart...on the front anyway. Good time to go ahead and service the rear axle as well if you haven't. It is a breeze compared to the front other than sourcing the SST but with your skills you should be able to fab one of those up easy enough.

09-16-2012, 01:14 PM
Got the hole in the housing fixed. I had washed the area with a lot of dish soap to remove the 90wt. Then as I used my Dremel tool to prep the area for welding it was apparent that a number of hairline cracks were traveling along the OEM welds. I think the vibration of the Dremel really helped to identify the cracks. The dust filled in the cracks. So I drilled a number of holes where the cracks appeared to end. Then filled them with the welder in addition to the original hole.

09-16-2012, 03:24 PM
Well done.

09-16-2012, 07:22 PM
Hanger cleaned up and tacked into place. I could have burned it in all the way but I want to use the caster plates to make sure everything is aligned properly. So I'll be calling Christo early tomorrow for a set among other things.

Its coming along slow but I got a major honey do item done today, removal of the broken hot tub off the deck. Happy :Princess: is a good thing. Next weekend finish the :weld: and gusset the knuckle balls. Drop of the front diff this week for the gears set up professionally. Then maybe I'll be in the reassemble mode on the front end.

Then only thing left is the rear axle PM and gear set up. Might actually have this back on the road by Oct.

09-16-2012, 09:05 PM
Weld done.

Fixed it :thumb:

09-17-2012, 12:21 AM
Way to get after it, looking good Corbet. :beer:

09-26-2012, 07:13 PM
Progress report. I didn't take many pictures this past weekend while welding on the broken hanger and Slee Caster Plates. I welded the plates inside and out and added a larger than OEM gusset to the top of the rear portion of the radius arm hanger (where it broke). Did some additional welding to the driver's side too. Landtank heavy duty sway bar hangers installed. Not real pretty as my east coast cruiser had some undercoating applied probably by the dealer. Hard to get cleaned up real good. Pics: finished housing rattle canned and ready for re-assembly. Picked up the 3rd member from the shop today with the new 4.88's installed.

10-27-2012, 02:59 PM
Finally got a break from work this week and some progress on the truck. Starting another business sure is time consuming.:o

Pulled the rear diff and dropped it off in town for the gear install on Thursday.

Today I made some front bump stop drops. The only 1" drops I could find commercially were from Man-A-Fre and out of stock. Overpriced anyway. So for $15 in materials I have a set of HDPE bump stops made from a cheap cutting board (Wal-Mart) and some new grade 10.9 hardware. A 3" hole saw is all you need. :hill: I went with green because I could.

Hopefully this will keep the 315's from rubbing. And leave some additional space for the winter chains.

10-27-2012, 03:02 PM
Then I got the housing back in with some preowned 30mm spacers donated to the cause by my neighbor. Colorful set up I know:lol:

Bridger has a friend's birthday party to attend so work is done for today.

10-28-2012, 12:27 AM
Nice! Cutting board is to 2010s as hockey pucks were to 1980s.

11-04-2012, 07:28 PM
It lives...:)

Finally got it out of the garage today. I ran out of gear oil so I still can't drive it :rolleyes: but at lease it pulled out of the garage under its own power. I filled the rear diff about half full before the bucket went dry. So in addition to the front axle housing repair I was able to complete the following:

Nitro 4.88 gear sets
30mm spacers at all 4 corners
dropped both sway bars, front Slee spacers, rear LandTank
New front radius arm bushings
Front and rear axle over hauls
Slee caster plates.

Still need to install the LandTank rear LCA's and Adjustable Panhards (backorder from IronMan) But after I can get some 90w Redline gear oil delivered to Durango I can put it back into DD service.