rebuilding half-shafts?

Engine, Transmission and related drivetrain.
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SteveEdmonton
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Re: rebuilding half-shafts?

Postby SteveEdmonton » 12 Feb 2012 07:05

Sure, that would be great. (Others might find it useful too...) Thanks!
'71 4-door
'74 MGB-GT
'04 Miata

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510wizard
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Re: rebuilding half-shafts?

Postby 510wizard » 12 Feb 2012 08:29

Here is the scan from the factory manual,

Image

Note, that it basically says that any damage,wear or distortion to replace the half shaft.

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SteveEdmonton
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Re: rebuilding half-shafts?

Postby SteveEdmonton » 12 Feb 2012 17:40

Here's another nuance to this topic. I gather that 240Z half-shafts are identical to the 510 ones.

I'm deducing this from 3 things. One thread here says that the axle stubs are the same... the U-joint part numbers are the same... and finally, one old manual that I have, which covers all Datsuns from 1968 to 1972, has a caption on its drawing of a half-shaft that says "HSL 30 and PL 510 half-shaft."

If this is correct, it opens up another source for used half-shafts (complete) as well as the parts that might be needed.

Anybody know if this is correct-- if they are actually the same?
'71 4-door
'74 MGB-GT
'04 Miata

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hang_510
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Re: rebuilding half-shafts?

Postby hang_510 » 13 Feb 2012 21:28

nice pictures!

i always wanted to pull one apart...
byron wrote:I'd be all over that like a fat kid on a smartie.

okayfine wrote:Sense doesn't always have everything to do with it, and I speak from experience.

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SteveEdmonton
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Re: rebuilding half-shafts?

Postby SteveEdmonton » 13 Jan 2013 14:20

Nothing like resurrecting a page that's been dead for almost a whole year. Shall we just say I've been busy? :| This multi-year project inches along, bit by bit, with several sections of it on the go at any one time. And this section was obviously just "sitting" for 10 months.

Anyway, the axles are now finished. Thought I'd share some pics and insight from the job, in case others want to tackle a rebuild of their axles too.

First up: all the parts, disassembled, except for the balls-and-spacers. They're soaking in solvent to loosen up the 40-year-old grease.
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Next, with the new boot and first set of rings / clips in place. I worried about messing this up and finding out later that I'd forgotten to put something in. But everything went smoothly. This ring-and-clip combo is just waiting, at this point, until the inner shaft slips into the yoke, at which point it will hold everything together at this end of the assembly (this is of course the outer end of the axle).
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I experimented with two ways of repacking the balls and spacers. The first time, I packed them into the yoke (the female half of the assembly). Couldn't get the pieces back together that way though; the inner shaft just kept pushing the balls-and-spacers out the other end. So then I tried it this way, packing things onto the shaft instead. I figured it would be easier to hold them in place, and yep it sure was.
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More in the next posting-- don't want to make this one too long.

OH--and do you realize how tempting it is to describe this whole process in sexual terms? I'm doing my best to keep it family-rated! :oops:
'71 4-door
'74 MGB-GT
'04 Miata

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SteveEdmonton
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Re: rebuilding half-shafts?

Postby SteveEdmonton » 13 Jan 2013 14:30

Now here's everything sliding together. I found it made a huge difference what type of grease I used. The first axle, I used regular axle grease. (Seemed natural I guess.) Had a really hard time getting all the bits to slide, but finally it all worked out.
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Once that one was finished, I realized that the new boots actually came with packages of grease just for this purpose. So I used that on the second axle and man, what a difference. Stuff slipped together like nothing. The package didn't say exactly what type of grease it was, other than that it was formulated for CV axles (I know these aren't exactly CVs, but close enough I guess) and included molybdenum disulfide.

It also said this grease is incompatible with petroleum distillates, and thus not to clean stuff with solvent-- or, if doing so, to wash everything with soap & water before assembly. I wasn't quite that scrupulous... and did use solvent right before assembly. Hope it doesn't come back to bite me later. :?

So this is the special grease going into the grooves of the yoke, before assembling the second axle.
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Once the shaft is tucked nicely into the yoke, the ring-and-circlip retainer go onto the shaft like this, to keep the balls-and-spacers (and thus the shaft itself) from being pulled out of the yoke if the axle is pulled to its maximum length.
IMG_5569 web.jpg
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'71 4-door
'74 MGB-GT
'04 Miata

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two_68_510s
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Re: rebuilding half-shafts?

Postby two_68_510s » 13 Jan 2013 14:34

Excellent post, really gives some insight into one of the more mysterious parts of the car. 8)
Joel

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“We will either find a way, or make one.” – Hannibal

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SteveEdmonton
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Re: rebuilding half-shafts?

Postby SteveEdmonton » 13 Jan 2013 14:44

And now we're into the home stretch. This cross-shaped washer thingy goes onto the end of the shaft, with each arm of the cross fitting into one of the grooves in which the balls-and-spacers slide. I think their purpose is not so much to keep all that stuff from tumbling out of the inner end of the yoke, as it is to keep them "together" as a group when the axle is extended to its full length. I'm not sure why that's important, but otherwise I can't quite see what the purpose of this cross-shaped washer is.
IMG_5591 web.jpg
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Once that cross-shaped washer (and its circlip retainer) are in place, the end-cap-- which is basically just an aluminum plug, with an O-ring seal-- can be slipped into the inner end of the yoke. I picked up new O-rings of course from an industrial-supply place, since one of the "issues" with my old axles was that moisture had gotten in over the years causing rusting of the balls and races.

Here, this end-cap is back in, with its own circlip holding it in place.
IMG_5570 web.jpg
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The last step, then, is to secure the boots to the axles. I didn't take pics of this process since I needed both hands the whole time to tighten up the clamps. But if you do this, you can figure that part out yourself I'm sure. There are several styles of boot-clamp tools. Mine is just above the axles, to the top of the picture. It didn't come with instructions, but it wasn't too hard to figure out. It's definitely a good idea to use such a tool instead of needlenose pliers, since these clamps have to be torqued down (or torqued up? whatever!) pretty tight to keep moisture out.
IMG_5592 web.jpg
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Obviously I need to put my new u-joints in, still. But the axles themselves are done. They slide really well-- especially the one with the special moly grease. (Wish I'd used it in both.) Here's hoping they last another four decades!
'71 4-door
'74 MGB-GT
'04 Miata

Dropoff510
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Re: rebuilding half-shafts?

Postby Dropoff510 » 01 Sep 2013 01:02

Hi sorry to change subject but does anyone know the spline count on the part that the half shafts bolts upto on the wheel side. It's held on with that big retaining nut. It's part number 46 according to the image OKAYFINE posted on page one of this thread. Not sure what its called. Thanks in advance.

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JordanTr
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Re: rebuilding half-shafts?

Postby JordanTr » 01 Sep 2013 10:23

That would be the companion flange methinks.

Quick search gives you some results I believe. viewtopic.php?f=2&t=6269&hilit=companion+flange+spline

Good luck!

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Jordan | '72 2 door KA project | '94 240sx RB26DETT | '97 Silvia RB25DET | '90 Audi 90 Quattro 20V (DD)

Tank510
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Re: rebuilding half-shafts?

Postby Tank510 » 14 Feb 2017 08:50

Did you use a boot expander to get the new boot on?

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SteveEdmonton
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Re: rebuilding half-shafts?

Postby SteveEdmonton » 15 Feb 2017 07:14

Good question. No I didn't, partly because I didn't have such a thing but also because it was simple just to slip the boot onto the shaft before re-assembling the unit. If you look back at the pictures you'll see that the boot is already in place from the very beginning of the re-assembly.
'71 4-door
'74 MGB-GT
'04 Miata


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