2002d 4 wheel drive spindle bearing replacement.

   #1  

winston1

Super Member
Joined
Dec 16, 2009
Messages
5,019
Location
gilmer tx
Got to noticing the spindle had a good deal of slack where the steering arm attach's up top. Tore it down far enough day before yesterday to see for sure what parts needed ordered. Put it back together. Ordered the parts yesterday from Hoyes, received them this morning, started the job after lunch and finished up around 5pm. Took a few pictures if anyone is interested.

1st picture showing the drag rod removed. I used a pickle fork for that. Worked great.
2nd picture showing the lower knuckle removed. Notice the tie rod removed and 4 bolts holding the lower bevel gear housing. The lower housing taps right off with the bolts removed.
3rd picture is tractor on a jack stand giving easy access to components.
4th picture is shot looking in the axle housing with the upper bevel gear case removed. The axle is splined and slides out of needle bearings in the differential.
5th picture is of the lower bevel gear case. I did not remove the axle, axle seal, or bearings. Seals were not leaking, bearings good, so I left them alone. Notice the old knuckle seal. Those were replaced
6th picture is the upper bevel gear case with axle still in it. Notice the small spacer on the workbench. That slides up on the spindle below the lower bevel gear.
7th picture is the upper bevel gear case with axle removed. Notice the snap ring above it. That holds the bearing, shims and axle in the housing. Also beginning to see my problems. Notice all the rusty looking muck inside the housing. That is the location of the bad upper spindle bearing.
8th picture is the spindle removed from the upper bevel gear case. Notice the bad bearing. Both sides were identically bad. They go on the shaft right where the pliers are pointing. I failed to get pictures but on the lower end of that shaft goes a needle bearing, spacer, needle bearing, spacer, and snap ring. The needle bearings run inside the bevel gears.
9th picture is the new bearing on the shaft. Notice it has seals. Hoyes sent sealed bearings which I left in even though I believe the originals were without seals. There is really no way for lubricant to reach this bearing. It is high above the lubricant level and I don't believe that upper bevel gear would ever splash it that high. The spindle shaft actually cleaned up nicely even though my pictures may not reflect that.
10th picture is showing a shim that goes between the snap ring and bearing to set backlash on the axle bevel gear and upper bevel gear. I had to add a .2mm shim (about .008") to the existing shim to get my backlash good.

Most difficult job was removing the steering arm from the left side spindle. I was sure nuff stuck. I have a good feeling about my repairs. I actually had one of the knuckle seals replaced during my long gone warranty period and I had replaced one some time back. One of them had started to leak a little. The wobble and movement the upper spindle bearings was allowing had to lead to a shorter life for them. I know I have a much better understanding of how it all works now. Just in my simple mind that whole front end is keenly engineered. I know this is long and I wish I had 284s knack of explaining things but maybe some of this will make sense.

Failed to get a picture but I also replaced the seals at the top of the upper bevel gear housings that seals the top of the spindle shaft where moisture might enter.
 

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#3  
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winston1

Super Member
Joined
Dec 16, 2009
Messages
5,019
Location
gilmer tx
I just went out and took another look at the old spindle bearings. They are a 6205 bearing. There is an oil film mixed with gunk on the bearings. It is really somewhat puzzling to me how contamination gets up at the very top point. I believe it happened over a long period of time. Every thing below these bearings pretty much runs in an oil bath and all was pretty clean. With the back and forth movement the bearings were allowing there is no way the top seal could have been holding. When installed new though it would seem it should have held and not allowed moisture in. To sum it up I do not believe it was overload but rather water or condensation coupled with lack of lubricant.
 
   #4  

Car Doc

Elite Member
Joined
Mar 19, 2009
Messages
3,237
Location
Kansas
Good info Winston I would be happy with your work also thanks for a detailed post! I will be doing the same thing to mine at some point. My top spindle bearings have way too much play also so glad to have this to look back at. :thumbsup:

I think the dirt and h2o gets in at the top pretty easily from how I look at the design and the slop in the gears in the knuckle from that slop bothers me quite a bit also just a sloppy situation.
 
 
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