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View Full Version : Loose nuts/cone washers on hub flange...


corsair23
04-14-2008, 02:33 PM
Question for the experts before I get too freaked out and pull a "Kipper" on a local area Lexus dealer :mad:

I'm getting ready for a front brake job on the LX (rotors, pads, fluid). Got the LX in the garage and up on jack stands. Get the wheels off and on the PS I notice that the cone washers look "different" than I remember them looking when I did the brakes on the 80. Different in that I can see a LOT of the cone washer :confused:. Upon closer inspection I found that each and every one of the cone washers and nuts wasn't even hand tight on the flange (I think that is what it is called). Seriously, I was able to turn each nut like 1/4"-3/8" until it was hand tight on the flange :eek:.

Now I am wondering what if any damage could have been done by having these loose? The flange is "stuck" to the hub pretty well (well, at least enough that when I grabbed it it didnt' just slip back on the bolts).

I have no idea if they have been like this for awhile or something the dealer may have loosened and forgot to tighten back down...My thought is the later as I had the LX in trying to get the warranty company to foot the bill on a front axle service. Last year the seals weren't leaking "enough". This year they state the seepage is "normal" :rant:

TIA

Red_Chili
04-14-2008, 02:47 PM
Take pictures and drive the thing back to the dealer.
Most likely no damage if you haven't wheeled it, but you could have bent the studs. The flange is tight?!?

nakman
04-14-2008, 02:52 PM
I wouldn't worry about it. remember there are those two posts in there that prevent the thing from spinning, so there shouldn't have been any "load" on the loose studs- that's why it still felt "stuck." If it were my truck, I'd torque the nuts all down to spec and drive it- but I've got 3 sets of studs, cone washers, washers, and nuts in my tool box in the back of the truck, just insurance if one of those were to break. If you're really freaked out you could buy 12 new sets of studs w/ all new hardware and swap it all out, would actually make your next axle service a lot easier with all new cone washers.

Uncle Ben
04-14-2008, 03:11 PM
I wouldn't worry about it. remember there are those two posts in there that prevent the thing from spinning, so there shouldn't have been any "load" on the loose studs- that's why it still felt "stuck." If it were my truck, I'd torque the nuts all down to spec and drive it- but I've got 3 sets of studs, cone washers, washers, and nuts in my tool box in the back of the truck, just insurance if one of those were to break. If you're really freaked out you could buy 12 new sets of studs w/ all new hardware and swap it all out, would actually make your next axle service a lot easier with all new cone washers.

Nakman knows!

Pull the hub off and check the drive pin holes for oblonging. If they aren't oblonged then you caught it in time! Bolt it back up with a new gasket and be happy Toyota uses cone washer and drive pins as if it was a Heep Rubicon like Nay praises so highly you would have to spend some green to fix such a easy problem!

EDIT: Semi hi-jack for 'splainin reasons... The reason I posted what I did as my neighbor's very nice 2 year old Rubicon is back in the shop again this time for the horn issue that I guess they finally recalled (likes to randomly honk or not work). The truck is a sweet rig in thoery if you can keep it out of the shop for stupid body and electrical issues! He did have a hub issue early on that cost him a hub, spindle, and labor costs of over $800 that was denied by warranty due to him admitting it loosened up on him off-highway! He actually is thinking of trading it in on a FJC as his wifes 5 year old Sienna hasn't been in the shop yet except for routine maintainance!

corsair23
04-14-2008, 04:31 PM
Thanks guys!

I drove it maybe 50 miles on some errands after I picked it up then backed it into the garage to get it ready for the brake job and everything else planned.

I will check out the drive pins and holes as mentioned and see what I can see. It has either been like this since I bought it in Nov '06 (I personally haven't touched the front end till now) which means it has seen a fair amount of wheeling OR it has been like this since last May the last time the dealer had it OR since I picked it up. Both times it was at Kuni I was trying to get the warranty company to cover the cost of the axle service due to failed seals. I guess the damage, if any, will be an indicator of how long it may have been like this. :(

EDIT: for those that don't know what we are chatting about (which was me until last year when I did the rotors on the 80) here is a picture I "borrowed" from the MUD FAQs on the front axle service. There are 6 nuts and cone washers that hold the hub flange on. Each of these was backed out as if the flange was going to be removed (which is required to do the front axle service or to replace the rotors).

.

Beater
04-14-2008, 08:19 PM
dude - there's a reason they created lock-tight. all flanges will come loose eventually...

at least on every rover and the two 80's I have owned..

j

Red_Chili
04-15-2008, 08:15 AM
I like Lock-tite too (I ride a Buell :lmao:) but don't use Lock-tite here. You may very well turn that stud and nut into a bolt! The cone washers and lock washer work very well if torqued to spec.

Uncle Ben
04-15-2008, 08:23 AM
I like Lock-tite too (I ride a Buell :lmao:) but don't use Lock-tite here. You may very well turn that stud and nut into a bolt! The cone washers and lock washer work very well if torqued to spec.


Exactly! Lock-tite the studs into the spindle hub so they don't loosen but only rely on torque and washers on the nuts! :eek::o ;)

Beater
04-15-2008, 12:08 PM
I use the blue one for that, not the read. I have also used right stuf as well on low torque spec apps. Basically, the goo acts as a vibration dampenner.

j

Rzeppa
04-15-2008, 06:56 PM
Question for the experts before I get too freaked out and pull a "Kipper" on a local area Lexus dealer :mad:

I'm getting ready for a front brake job on the LX (rotors, pads, fluid). Got the LX in the garage and up on jack stands. Get the wheels off and on the PS I notice that the cone washers look "different" than I remember them looking when I did the brakes on the 80. Different in that I can see a LOT of the cone washer :confused:. Upon closer inspection I found that each and every one of the cone washers and nuts wasn't even hand tight on the flange (I think that is what it is called). Seriously, I was able to turn each nut like 1/4"-3/8" until it was hand tight on the flange :eek:.

Now I am wondering what if any damage could have been done by having these loose? The flange is "stuck" to the hub pretty well (well, at least enough that when I grabbed it it didnt' just slip back on the bolts).

I have no idea if they have been like this for awhile or something the dealer may have loosened and forgot to tighten back down...My thought is the later as I had the LX in trying to get the warranty company to foot the bill on a front axle service. Last year the seals weren't leaking "enough". This year they state the seepage is "normal" :rant:

TIA

Clearly all is well and it looks like the story will turn out with a happy ending. So instead of advising on what to do at the moment, I'll add my experience with this design.

The two hardened dowel pins are supposed to take the majority of the torque. Fortunately this is the front so it doesn't see as much as the rear. The studs help but don't have as much shear strength.

These studs do not bend, they shear. If they shear at the base of the hub, you have to drill and re-tap if you're lucky. If not it's helicoil time. Helicoils are not as strong as the original hub threads, but they beat the alternative. The reason they aren't as strong is that they comprise fewer threads.

There is no need whatsoever to use locktite in this application. The stock split washers do a fine job. Aftermarket split washer often do not.

Do NOT overtighten the nuts. Just ask Daniel Markofsky what happens :-) Gudentite is good enough.

If the whole thing shears, the holes that the dowel pins are inserted into in the hub will waller (tech term). If this happens, it will never be the same and the best fix is a new ($$$) hub. Next best is drilling the 7mm holes to accept 8mm dowel pins, or drilling and tapping for 10mm unbreako bolts (instead of studs, I do not know if they make unbreako studs, but down under they use unbreako bolts when this happens).

The stock design is fairly stout on the front, although I've seen some sheared on the trail with larger tires and aggressive driving. I also was standing right next to Christo in his parking lot when he sheared the front of his in the Short Bus, but that's another story :-) In the FF rear design it is a weak point compared to the earlier SF design.

I used to shear mine on the rear of my HZJ75 so often that I used to carry what I called my "axle kit", which consisted of spare studs, spare dowel pins, split washers, cone washers, left handed drill bits, M8 tap, M8 helicoil tap, helicoils and helicoil insertion tool. Cordless drill, cordless dremel, etc. With a dremel you can sometimes cut a slot in the end of a sheared stud (or any broken bolt) and use the slot to use a screwdriver to unscrew it.