Axle and exhaust fixes this weekend

Joined
Aug 15, 2006
Messages
10,060
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Central Washington
When I did my brakes a few months back, I noticed my left rear axle was beginning to leak oil, so I finally pulled the trigger on the parts last week. Ordered not just the seal and bearing, but I also ordered in a ford racing carbon clutch trac-loc rebuild kit, friction modifier for that, Redline 75W110 to fill it, and a factory finned cast aluminum diff cover that if I understand right, is from the Boss 302 mustang. Tore the axle down last weekend, and since I was doing the clutches in the tracloc, of course, I pulled both axle shafts, not just the left side that was leaking. I got a surprise when I pulled the right side. The bearing surface on the axle was damaged. The leaking axle was good and the non-leaking axle was bad, figure that one out. So I went to my parts pile and pulled a good 28 spline shaft out of a parts axle, and ordered a second bearing and seal so I could replace both wheel bearings and seals. [Linked Image] Those came in this week and I finally was able to get to starting putting it back together Friday evening, and finished it on Saturday. [Linked Image] Found another odd issue, the backing plate on the right side was bent inwards. I discovered this while rebuilding the parking brakes. These cars use a drum in the hat of the rear discs as the parking brake. On my left side, the parking shoes were soaked with oil, but I had a set of parking shoes and hardware kit in stock, so I rebuilt both sides with new shoes and hardware. The bent backing plate had cause the parking shoes to be at an angle and as a result one was rubbing the "drum". [Linked Image] Went to the parts axle and scored a good replacement, got that installed and the parking brake all put back together. Then finally the axles went back in on fresh wheel bearings and seals, and new carbon clutches in my trac lok. I even forced the included heavy "F-150" preload spring in. It says not to use that on 28 spline axles, but Ive never heard of anyone breaking axles from that spring. However, if its possible, Im sure Ill find out. Im good at breaking things that no one else breaks. [Linked Image] Pretty easy from there. Clean up the gasket surface on the axle, squirt some grey RTV on the cover and throw it on. Fill the axle with the Redline, reassemble the discs and calipers, mount the wheels and off we went. [Linked Image] And that cover looks really cool. The drain plug is worth the cost of admission. But I decided today that I want to deal with my exhaust. I had bought parts a long time ago, and was gonna have a shop install them, but then Im going, Wait, I have a MIG welder now, with some stainless wire and a bottle of argon. Whats stopping me from installing the parts myself. Nothing, so Thats what I did this afternoon. My car has a Stainless Works brand, mandrel bent 2.5" stainless catback system, with X-pipe and chambered mufflers. This is the second car this system has been under, its about 10 years old My least favorite part of the system has always been the large 3.5" tips that came with it. Too ostentatious for me, and I know they are basically megaphones, amplifying the sound. I suspected they were causing the drone at highway speed. So, off they came. [Linked Image] And on went the resonator and turn down tip. All 2.5". The resonator is basically a straight through muffler with steel wool packing. [Linked Image] The look is, IMO much better. Much more subtle. Once the shiny turndown gets seasoned with road grime and grit, itll look pretty factory I think. [Linked Image] Phenomenal improvement. Its pretty tame at idle now. Just enough extra noise that its obviously not a stock system, but not distracting. The drone at highway cruise is gone, or at least gone enough the wind noise is a worse problem now. There is still a bit at about 55-60mph, but its tolerable. Once its up to 65 and over, its gone. Wish I had done it last year when I bought the resonators and tips. I was worried it wasnt going to be enough difference to be worth the effort, so I had been putting it off. But better late than never. Im now happy with the exhaust, its exactly what I wanted from an aftermarket exhaust. This, IMO is how the system should have come. Now my next problem is the exhaust leak from my driver manifold is louder than the exhaust, so I have gaskets and studs/nuts coming so I can replace that exhaust log with a good used one I have. Someone screwed up the threads where the cat bolts to the manifold, and instead of fixing it, ruined it worse by forcing a SAE nut onto the metric stud. Which didnt hold, so its just hanging off one side and sounds like butt. Theres no saving that stud and Ive tried to remove the stud to replace it, but thats not gonna happen. Itll be easier to just replace the log with another one that has two good studs and nuts to clamp the cat to.

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Joined
Oct 28, 2017
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Americus, GA
Something I remembered about my parents' Grand Marquis. There were some Crown Vics and Grand Marquis from that time period that Ford forgot to heat treat the axles. My dad had put some new tires on his Grand Marquis and began noticing a whine in the rear end. It turned out to be the axles. The car was just past the warranty. Ford helped with the cost of replacement of the axles and seals.
 
Joined
Jun 5, 2003
Messages
25,153
Location
Apple Valley, California
All American manufacturers have used the axle as the race at one time or another. Stupid design! Maybe not stupid since they get to sell axles? The Japanese did it right by pressing an actual bearing onto the axle instead. Making the axle reusable if the bearing goes bad.
 
Joined
Sep 25, 2004
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9,445
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Marshfield , MA
Great pictures great write-up. Got some Panther love, 5L pushrod V8. A classic engine with a century of refinement. I could "see" them a half mile back at night from the headlights. grin2
 

4WD

$50 site donor 2022
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Sep 21, 2010
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Texas
Maybe so … but I have had rear Dana axles not fail in 17 years of hard use. Had a differential go out and re used all the outer kit. OP grabbed a used part. Axles are not grossly expensive … so if not a DIY type person, $120/hour for labor is a factor Not sure this is a major problem
 

Colt45ws

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Joined
Aug 15, 2006
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Central Washington
Originally Posted by MParr
Something I remembered about my parents' Grand Marquis. There were some Crown Vics and Grand Marquis from that time period that Ford forgot to heat treat the axles. My dad had put some new tires on his Grand Marquis and began noticing a whine in the rear end. It turned out to be the axles. The car was just past the warranty. Ford helped with the cost of replacement of the axles and seals.
Yup, I remember that. Yeah, they usually only made it to the 30k mile range before failing, so thats typical. This car didnt have that problem, as I have 95k on it now.
Originally Posted by Chris142
All American manufacturers have used the axle as the race at one time or another. Stupid design! Maybe not stupid since they get to sell axles? The Japanese did it right by pressing an actual bearing onto the axle instead. Making the axle reusable if the bearing goes bad.
Yeah, that would be nice. My brother was amazed that little nick would condemn the whole axle. Its a shame really, but no sense in putting it back in. It would just continue to deteriorate until I would be forced to fix it.
 

Colt45ws

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Aug 15, 2006
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10,060
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Originally Posted by Kestas
That damage on the shaft is a spall from Hertzian loading. Spalls on roller bearing raceways only get bigger during use. http://evolution.skf.com/us/the-pro...tact-fatigue-damage-of-rolling-bearings/
So if Im understanding that correctly, there was a imperfection on the axle surface, which is essentially the inner race, and that caused loads on the bearing that resulted in the spalling. Interesting. Good to know! And Yeah, I knew it would only get worse. Seeing as I had good spare parts, there was no sense in putting it back in. I threw it in my scrap pile
 
Joined
Aug 24, 2017
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Displaced Texan in Mexico City
Of all the maintenance and car stuff I do and have done in the past changing diff fluid is still the worst job. With all the modern technology we have can't they make a diff fluid that smells better than week old garbage sitting in the Texas heat?
 
Joined
Jun 3, 2005
Messages
17,106
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Santa Barbara, CA
Nice diff cover!! That one came stock on my Mustang, the drain and fill plugs are worth the cover fee. I'm constantly amazed at how many Crown Vic axles we sell. At least he 31 spline ones keep going on and off back order which is incredibly frustrating for all involved.
 

Kestas

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Jun 4, 2002
Messages
14,194
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The Motor City
Originally Posted by Colt45ws
Originally Posted by Kestas
That damage on the shaft is a spall from Hertzian loading. Spalls on roller bearing raceways only get bigger during use. http://evolution.skf.com/us/the-pro...tact-fatigue-damage-of-rolling-bearings/
So if Im understanding that correctly, there was a imperfection on the axle surface, which is essentially the inner race, and that caused loads on the bearing that resulted in the spalling. Interesting. Good to know! And Yeah, I knew it would only get worse. Seeing as I had good spare parts, there was no sense in putting it back in. I threw it in my scrap pile
Yes,the defect could have been a debris dent from dirty lubricant or a subsurface material imperfection.
 
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