Cleaning/Regreasing/Rebooting CV joint 2.0 - tips

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The axle shaft for the 2006 Focus is ready to install Saturday. The clean/regrease/reboot process is successful. Some things I learned to maybe be of help to others thinking about doing this. Wear disposable gloves!: * The CV joint consist of really four different parts - a central six sided spider with splines to fit on the shaft, a bearing cage, six ball bearings and the hub that the whole thing fits into. * After mounting the axle in a vise, cut the bands holding the boot on (dremel works well). Then cut the boot off with a utility knife. Clean as much grease from the joint as possible with brake cleaner and a screwdriver so you can see what you're doing. * Using a large drift and a BFH on one of the legs of the spider, knock the joint off the shaft end. * Pushing down on one end of the spider and cage will bring a ball up to a position that it can be popped out with a pocket screwdriver. Then, push the opposite side down and remove the next ball. Do this until all balls are removed. Rotate the spider/cage assy straight up and move it around in the opposite axis and remove it. * Clean everything. Brake cleaner, mineral spirits. I used dish soap and water and alcohol for a final clean. Inspect for scoring, grooves, etc. * On the Focus the end of the spider with the snap ring groove and the end of the bearing cage with the chamfer both face outward. Coat all surfaces with a light coating of grease and reassemble. * Make SURE that the inner clamp and boot are now on the axle shaft. * Cut the corner from the grease packet and pack the joint full of grease. Massage it into all crevices. Put some down the center of the spider and push it into the back of the assy with your finger. Remaining grease then goes into the new boot. * Fold the boot back and using a small screwdriver, push each side of the snap ring down into its groove while holding pressure against it with the CV joint. Use the BFH once more to knock the joint onto the shaft. Don't just whack without depressing the snap ring - it won't work. * Napa sells a tool for crimping the bands. Invest in one. It's less than $7. DO NOT use pliers, end nippers, vice grips, etc for clamping the bands. After you see how the tool works, you'll understand why I say that. * The boot locates on grooves on the shaft and on the hub. Pull the bands up tight by hand, then crimp. I hope this helps. This by no means makes me a CV joint expert and this is only how the Focus CV joint is made. Your application may be different.
 
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Did you put the balls back into the cages/grooves where they came from, or was this not required? It says to do so in my Toyota manual (warning against mixing them up).
 

chestand

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I didn't put the balls back into their original holes. I don't know how you could do that and there was so little wear on the components, I didn't worry about it.
 
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Thanks for posting! I'm about to do both of my front axles (inner & outer) as the outer boots have small tears. I also think it would be wise to mark the joint before disassembly to be sure it goes back the same way. Looks like a greasy job....
 

chestand

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I enjoy sharing knowledge gleaned from doing repairs. Yes, it is a greasy job. Wear your "working on car" clothes.
 
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Originally Posted By: chestand
I didn't put the balls back into their original holes. I don't know how you could do that and there was so little wear on the components, I didn't worry about it.
Mark the CV parts (whatever they are called). Use like a "1" or just a line. Then count around clockwise--the first ball location would be "1", second is 2, etc. Then get an egg carton. You could label the locations, but I think you get the idea. I wish I had done this myself, oops, hindsight is better than foresight. I used the Lisle 30800 crimp tool, $22is kinda pricey compared to your price, but it worked well enough. [And it's USA made, if that matters.] Oh, one helpful hint: make sure to keep a large trashcan nearby. Wow is this messy. I didn't use any brake cleaner, I just used paper towels to wipe stuff down. Disposable gloves are nice too.
 
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Originally Posted By: chestand
I enjoy sharing knowledge gleaned from doing repairs. Yes, it is a greasy job. Wear your "working on car" clothes.
So do I. I'm currently involved in two 'less greasy' jobs. When those are done, let the grease-fest begin!
 
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