Making a start – Axles

OK, it’s October (the 20th), and I planned to start this new build in October, so a bit late, but here we go… Here’s my garage with the bigger “Boogie” buggy out having it’s head (gasket) done again… So there’s some space to work – normally the big buggy will be pulled out onto the drive and covered in a car cover whilst I’m working on the new little one…

So there’s this space in the back of the garage to store the lil’bugga buggy in-between working on it, hence the black line on the floor, it has to be behind there so I can get the Boogie in and shut the door!

I thought I’d make a start with one of the axles, so picked the rear as it’s a little bit more complicated than the front…

So, you’ll hopefully have read I’m planning to use two front axles? So that I can –
!) Narrow them
2) Have disk brakes all-round (with fiddles on the rear)
3) Have four wheel drive
4) Have four wheel steer? (Hopefully! Eventually!)

So the rear (front!) axle will have 26 spline TrailGear Heavy Duty (“HD”) shafts and CVs, so that means converting the diff from the standard 22 spline to 26 spline… by swapping the side gears within the differential… Your can see them on the ends of the shafts in the above photo 🙂

And a close up here… you can just see one of the original side gears inside the diff, the other is obscured by the crown wheel…

So with the diff removed from the carrier and the crown wheel removed, you can see I’ve tapped out the roll pin to get the centre pin out of the diff…

That then allows me to get the side and sun gears out…

So, original 22 spline gears at the top, replacement 26 spline at the bottom…

You need about three hands to get all the gears in and rotated into place… LOL

And then the centre pin can go back through and be secured with the roll pin tapped back into position.

Then the crown wheel can be reattached and the bolts “glued” into place with retainer (“Loctite” is the main brand, this is a cheaper version).

The diff can then be rebuilt into the carrier, and the 26 spline shafts slid in for a great photo! You can now see the diff will be in the centre of the axle rather than to one side…

That will allow me to narrow both the axles –

So, one front axle casing, nice and dirty and rusty… angle grinder with a wire brush attachment, latex gloves, ear plugs inside ear defenders, and a nice chunky hoodie on… and safety glasses of course!

This is my King Pin Bearing Shell removal tool… a suitable sized (the right OD on the) socket on a short extension bar, and a stout hammer…

The socket goes in the ball swivel and then the extension bar slides through the other bearing shell on the other side, and with a couple of sharp taps of the hammer soon pops out, and then reverse and do the other side…

Both shells out, and then repeat for the other end of the axle…

Now, to the untrained eye, this might look like half a plumbers over centre pliers… But it is infact…

… an Oil Seal puller! LOL… the end hooks in through the oil seal, and then with a quick lever the…

… oil seal pops straight out!

Then again repeat for the other end of the axle.

You know you’ve got a problem car fetish when you buy Gunk in 5L bottles!

Cleaning my balls with a sanding sponge soaked in Gunk! Ouch!

Nice clean axle… errr, and one of my fingers! LOL

The other side…

Comparing the left to the right, the left side needs a fair bit removing to make it the same as the right side, so that the two shorter side drive shafts can be used…

Comparing a short and a long shaft…

13″ / 33cm needs removing…

And then the fun starts! 13″ would put me into the wider section of the diff pumpkin in the axle casing!

Referencing the other side…

You can see the radius arm bracket sits over the wider part of the diff pumpkin, so…

My 13″ cutout section needs to start inside the radius arm mount, so that my 13″ cut at the other end is where the axle tube begons to widen to meet the diff pumpkin…

So kind of where these marker pens lines are…!

That’ll be fun!.. a job for another day methinks! 😉

Soon…

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