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Old 08-06-2016, 08:36 PM   #26
Bruce A. Frank
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Re: Dana 44 closed knuckle disc brakes

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Originally Posted by 61K10 View Post
this is what i put in mine to keep the knuckle bearings lubed. I put regular u-joints on the axles as tk won't see alot of 4wd.
The corn head grease is exactly the type needed, and it is called liquid grease, or fluid grease, designated as "00" and is available from several manufactures. Castrol make a good one.



This is a synthetic version of the 00 semi-liquid grease which lasts virtually forever. Doesn't break down from heat nor does it emulsify with water.

Packing the closed hub with regular grease does keep it from leaking out, but the grease is pushed away where the U-joint rotates so there is no on-going lubrication of the joint. The semi-liquid characteristic of the 00 lube allows it to pool around the U-joint seeping into the joint needles when the vehicle is sitting. BTW, if you install new U-Joints that happen to have the rubber lip seals around the edge of the needle bearing cup, remove those seals.

In an open knuckle those U-joint cup seals keep dirt out. In a closed knuckle they keep grease out. From experience I have found that the joints that have the seals removed so they get re-lubed by the pooling fluid grease, last longer than the U-joints do if the bearing cup seals are left in place. The churning of the joint rotates actually liquefies the grease around it letting the bearings to get grease. The liquification when churned is a characteristic called "thixotrophic."

Over the years I have used several brands of 00 semi liquid grease and they don't tend to leak even if the ball wiper seals are in poor shape.

Last edited by Bruce A. Frank; 08-06-2016 at 08:56 PM.
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Old 08-07-2016, 07:24 PM   #27
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Re: Dana 44 closed knuckle disc brakes

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Originally Posted by Bruce A. Frank View Post
The corn head grease is exactly the type needed, and it is called liquid grease, or fluid grease, designated as "00" and is available from several manufactures. Castrol make a good one.



This is a synthetic version of the 00 semi-liquid grease which lasts virtually forever. Doesn't break down from heat nor does it emulsify with water.

Packing the closed hub with regular grease does keep it from leaking out, but the grease is pushed away where the U-joint rotates so there is no on-going lubrication of the joint. The semi-liquid characteristic of the 00 lube allows it to pool around the U-joint seeping into the joint needles when the vehicle is sitting. BTW, if you install new U-Joints that happen to have the rubber lip seals around the edge of the needle bearing cup, remove those seals.

In an open knuckle those U-joint cup seals keep dirt out. In a closed knuckle they keep grease out. From experience I have found that the joints that have the seals removed so they get re-lubed by the pooling fluid grease, last longer than the U-joints do if the bearing cup seals are left in place. The churning of the joint rotates actually liquefies the grease around it letting the bearings to get grease. The liquification when churned is a characteristic called "thixotrophic."

Over the years I have used several brands of 00 semi liquid grease and they don't tend to leak even if the ball wiper seals are in poor shape.
Thanks for the great information!
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Old 08-08-2016, 12:41 AM   #28
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Re: Dana 44 closed knuckle disc brakes

I have some John Deere AN102562, just because they are the ones that developed it for their corn heads. Nice for certain gear boxes that develop class III leaks, as a stop gap before maintenance or replacement. But it can be used as a maintenance free long term oil in some gear boxes if you live in a warmer climate. Good to have on your shelf for sure.
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Old 08-08-2016, 03:43 AM   #29
Bruce A. Frank
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Re: Dana 44 closed knuckle disc brakes

There has been debate over the use of the Corn Head grease in closed knuckles on 4X4s. This type of grease has been on the recommended list for closed knuckle lube since such axles have been in use.

It is true that with good lip seals with the ball surface in good condition (smooth) 90W to 140W gear lube works well. But over time the ball wears, particularly evident on older vehicles, that make it near impossible to keep the gear lubes in the knuckle even with new seals and wipers.

But you will find that Dana included these 00 liquid grease lubricants on their recommended lists of proper lubes for closed knuckle axles.

There has also been some debate about some grease formulations' compatibility with bronze bushings and other non-ferrous bearings. Selecting a modern synthetic version of the 00 grease just eliminates the question.

Let me add that my first 4X4 was twenty years old when I got it. Over the years of putting 250,000 additional miles on it with different standard and liquid greases in the closed knuckles, I never say any corrosion of the bronze bushings or bearings in my axle. There may be technical info that says there might be such problems, but nothing showing in 250,000 miles seems a reasonable longevity test.
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Old 08-08-2016, 01:10 PM   #30
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Re: Dana 44 closed knuckle disc brakes

I mixed some 90w with my cornhead (small amount) seems to work just fine.
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Old 10-10-2017, 12:48 PM   #31
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Re: Dana 44 closed knuckle disc brakes

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This info may be useful for the next person who wants to do a disc conversion on a closed knuckle 44.

http://www.circletracksupply.com/che...brake-kit.html



I am looking to do the same conversion on a '56 International S120 4X4 D44 closed knuckle axle. The Circle Track source has discs for 8 lug, but a phone conversation got the information that undrilled discs may be available, so I could set up the 6 lug I need it.
Bruce, I don't know if you'll see this but you just about have to be the same guy whose question appeared in the Nov '17 FOURWHEELER due to the rarity of your truck. Don't know if it will make it into a future issue but here's what I wrote to them:

"Hello,

Read the question about converting the IH S120 front axle to disk brakes. Searched online and found that it has a Dana 44 ihc44fclosed - Torque King 4x4 .

I have a '66 K10 Suburban with a closed knuckle Dana 44. Early on in ownership I decided the stock drums were not going to cut it. Bought what was supposed to be a '73 Blazer disk brake 3.73 Dana 44 front axle. Even had a 3.73 rebuild tag. It was a 3.07. Started looking at the cut away in my '66 shop manual of the front brakes and a cut away from a '70s front disk Dana 44. Up to a point everything seemed the same. Contacted Dana and talked with an engineer who told me that you could not convert a closed knuckle drum brake axle to disks. The more I looked at it, It sure seemed that he was wrong. I had all of the donor parts so I set out to do it.

If I recall correctly, you strip the closed knuckle back to the steering knuckles and replace all of the outboard parts with parts from the disk donor. There's only two differences. The caliper carrier and the drum backing plate both have the same bolt pattern but one is drilled 6 and 12 and the other 3 and 9. Would mount the caliper in the wrong place to use the stock Blazer rubber brake lines. Took the mounts to a machine shop and had them re-drilled to match the backing plates. The other difference is that the u-joints both have the same number but one has an "X" suffix. The open knuckle disk brake axle uses u-joints with dust seals to retain the grease.
The closed knuckle u-joints have no seals so that the gear oil in the closed knuckles can lubricate them.

Called the Dana guy back after I had it working and told him what I did. He didn't apologize but told me that he'd never done the conversion but that friends of his who had, had done the same. Companies were worried about liability back then also. Speaking of liability, I could not find a shop willing to power bleed my brakes once they found out that the system was modified. Crazy world we live in.

A Nov '88 article in 4WHEEL & OFF-ROAD has an article "Poor Man's Floater" (pg 124-129) which details converting a Ford 9" rear axle to full float using Chevy front axle disk brake parts. As a sort of after thought, the article talks about using Chevy parts to convert a Ford drum brake Dana 44 to disks so I'm hoping this will also work for your reader."

When I say Knuckles out I also mean u-joints out. Good luck.
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Old 10-10-2017, 01:29 PM   #32
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Re: Dana 44 closed knuckle disc brakes

The next person who wants to do this just go to my build.
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Old 10-10-2017, 01:42 PM   #33
Bruce A. Frank
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Re: Dana 44 closed knuckle disc brakes

Surburbangeorge, thank you for that information. Interesting what the "experts" don't know or won't tell you.

One of my problems is that I want to retain the large circle (7.25") 6 lug bolt pattern because it is unique to IHC. This project has stalled, but has recently been rejuvenated. I am working with company that builds parts for race cars. The manager thinks we can create a kit from Wilwood parts.

I had looked at Wilwood, but everything I saw was in the $500 per wheel range. He thinks we can do it for less than $150 per wheel. I just need to pull the wheel and take it to him for accurate measurement. Just my time has suddenly become busier.

In our discussions I revealed that I am a welder. He needed a TIG welder so he hired me. Dream job, but it cuts into my freetime, compared to my retired free time.

BTW, that link with the picture from Circle Track Supply, that link no longer works. The company still exists, but I can find no front axle conversion kits on their site.

Yes, that is my truck in Four Wheeler!

Last edited by Bruce A. Frank; 10-10-2017 at 02:01 PM.
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Old 10-10-2017, 01:51 PM   #34
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Re: Dana 44 closed knuckle disc brakes

you can do it with all stock open knuckle parts.
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Old 10-10-2017, 02:20 PM   #35
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Re: Dana 44 closed knuckle disc brakes

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Originally Posted by Bruce A. Frank View Post
Surburbangeorge, thank you for that information. Interesting what the "experts" don't know or won't tell you.

One of my problems is that I want to retain the large circle (7.25") 6 lug bolt pattern because it is unique to IHC. This project has stalled, but has recently been rejuvenated. I am working with company that builds parts for race cars. The manager thinks we can create a kit from Wilwood parts.

I had looked at Wilwood, but everything I saw was in the $500 per wheel range. He thinks we can do it for less than $150 per wheel. I just need to pull the wheel and take it to him for accurate measurement. Just my time has suddenly become busier.

In our discussions I revealed that I am a welder. He needed a TIG welder so he hired me. Dream job, but it cuts into my freetime, compared to my retired free time.


BTW, that link with the picture from Circle Track Supply, that link no longer works. The company still exists, but I can find no front axle conversion kits on their site.

Yes, that is my truck in Four Wheeler!
So I'm also into water cooled VWs as well as trucks. There are companies which make adapters to mount one bolt pattern wheel on another wheel hub. If you could tolerate your wheel sitting another inch outboard, I'm pretty sure that you could have something made up.
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Old 10-10-2017, 02:33 PM   #36
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Re: Dana 44 closed knuckle disc brakes

Gee! (as he slaps his forehead) You know, I really had not thought that way. Back in the day when I was driving a '65 Beetle at college I use a set of adapters to mount 12" wide radials on Ford rims on the rear axle of my flower power Bug. But to do that for this conversion REALLY had not come to mind. I will have to ponder that!!!

That really could open a door on this conversion!
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Old 10-10-2017, 09:57 PM   #37
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Re: Dana 44 closed knuckle disc brakes

this guy will custom make spacers for you . http://www.wheeladapter.com/dually_spacers.php
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Old 10-10-2017, 10:06 PM   #38
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Re: Dana 44 closed knuckle disc brakes

Lol------------
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