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Old 04-16-2018, 06:46 PM   #1
riz
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Axle shafts too tight??

I just replaced the axle bearings and seals on my 10 bolt axle and now I can't get my axle shafts in??? They go in until there's about a couple inches left then they get so tight that they stop going in the rest of the way. They get super tight.... what am I doing wrong???
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Last edited by riz; 04-16-2018 at 08:45 PM.
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Old 04-16-2018, 08:48 PM   #2
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Re: Axle shafts too tight??

Did you install the correct bearings? Make sure you didn't spin the axles and walk out the differential gears.
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Old 04-16-2018, 09:00 PM   #3
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Re: Axle shafts too tight??

I installed the correct bearings.... once I slide the axle shafts in they get real tight and stop sliding in. The area on the shaft where the bearing should ride gets tight when it gets to the seal. Could the new seal be just that tight??? I'm just stumped and frustrated
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Old 04-17-2018, 07:10 AM   #4
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Re: Axle shafts too tight??

Do you see the axle engaging in to the differential side gear inside the carrier?
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Old 04-17-2018, 08:37 AM   #5
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Re: Axle shafts too tight??

Yes, but it won't go in far enough to install the c clip. I'm so stumped. I only goes in so far then it gets super tight..... so tight that if I give it a tap to see if it will go in further I need to hammer the back of the axle shaft to get it back out. The end of the shaft where the bearing should roll on is still sticking out so it's not even in on the bearing yet. It's like it's held up once it connects to the axle seal or something?

Question: Should the axle seal sit flush on the end of the axle tube? Mine is set in maybe about 1/8" or so...... not sure if that makes a difference or not.

The only thing new to the set up is the new bearings and seals.

Same axle shafts and everything. Is there blockage in the pumpkin end of the axle tube? The only splines it needs to line up with is the pumpkin gears, right?

Even when i remove the side pumpkin gears it will only go in so far and stop.... I tried that just in case I was having issues with the splines lining up... it seems that I am not.

I bought the bearings and seals from LMC Truck and there is only one rear bearing and seal in their catalog for the 81-87 1/2 ton. The bearings I got are part # 34-0520 and the seals I got are 34-0150.

Any help greatly appreciated.
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Old 04-17-2018, 09:29 AM   #6
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Re: Axle shafts too tight??

This won't help you but, everything I ever bought from LMC was junk.
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Old 04-17-2018, 04:08 PM   #7
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Re: Axle shafts too tight??

do all the end gears and spider gears need to be in place before the shafts will go in all the way?

Right now the side gears are resting in there but it shouldn't matter or does it?
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Old 04-18-2018, 01:31 PM   #8
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Re: Axle shafts too tight??

has the rear end ever been welded on?
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Old 04-18-2018, 01:52 PM   #9
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Re: Axle shafts too tight??

the rear has never been welded.
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Old 04-18-2018, 02:00 PM   #10
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Re: Axle shafts too tight??

Are both sides tight? Can you compare your new ones to the old ones?

Don't know what brand name are used at LMC, but picture looks OK.

https://shop.advanceautoparts.com/p/...6408/3275426-P
https://shop.advanceautoparts.com/p/...835s/3271498-P
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Old 04-18-2018, 06:29 PM   #11
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Re: Axle shafts too tight??

Your bearing and seals appear to be correct. How did you install the new bearings? What tool(s) did you use?. Is it possible you damaged the bearing during installation. It may be hard to tell with the seals installed. Did you test fit the bearing on the axle before installation? If you have the correct tools you can remove the bearings and test fit on the axle. It shouldn't be this hard. Sometimes it is hard to install the c clips but the axle should slide in with no issues providing the axle gears have not been dislodged. Maybe you should remove one seal, test the seal on the axle (it may be mangled to get it out), test the axle in the bearing and examine the bearing for damage. The seal will be scrap. If you didn't use a driver to install the bearing you might have damaged it. i.e. hammer and punch can damage bearing.
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Old 04-19-2018, 07:24 AM   #12
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Re: Axle shafts too tight??

I didn't slide the bearings on the shafts before install but I did match them up to the old ones and they seemed to be a perfect match under inspection. I borrowed a slide tool and bearing removal kit from O'Reileys to get the old ones out. I also borrowed a set of bearing punches from them for the install.......The bearings were tight but they went it no problem..... I pounded them in until the sound of the blows changed and I could feel the back of the bearing on the lip of the axle shaft. The seals are up against the bearings and have about a 1/4" lip where they rest in the axle.

I may have to borrow the tools from O'Reiley's again and pull the stuff out but I really hate to do that when I'm certain they are installed correctly. I have a free night tonight so I'm going to try it again and see if I can figure it out.

Any other help or idea are greatly appreciated.
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Old 04-19-2018, 11:21 AM   #13
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Re: Axle shafts too tight??

Well it certainly sounds that you have done everything right. Just a question, you mention bearing punches. Did you mean a tool that looks like a seal installer where there is full 360 degree contact on the outer bearing race or otherwise.
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Old 04-19-2018, 11:58 AM   #14
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Re: Axle shafts too tight??

yes.... it was a set of flat sided metal punches of varying sizes........ I used the size that was the closest to the outside edge of the bearing....it was driven in with a size just smaller than the overall diameter of the bearing itself.
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Old 04-19-2018, 12:24 PM   #15
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Re: Axle shafts too tight??

Ok you have done it all right. Should work unless the wrong bearings were in the right box. Maybe you could pop out a seal and look really close on the bearing race for a part number. Maybe that will explain it. Maybe the bearings were previously damaged, reboxed and returned for refund and nobody noticed. A used axle should fall in with little to no effort. Something is wrong with the bearing / seal. Personally I would take it apart but I can say that because I have the tools. Your case is a little different. Maybe you should buy the tools you need. Buy Harbour Freight quality. Good luck
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Old 04-19-2018, 12:53 PM   #16
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Re: Axle shafts too tight??

I ran into this with a 10 bolt a few years ago. Got bearings from the parts store and the axles would stop with an inch or two to go. They were the right part number for the application and after digging into it, the parts store gave me what they called “repair” bearings. I had not heard of it before but they had an outer race that was a bit longer to move the bearing on the axle shaft to get away from the worn area. They would slide very tightly on to the axle shaft on the bench but when installed in the axle tube, they weren’t big enough to receive the axle shaft.

I returned them for normal bearings and the axles slid right in.
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Old 04-19-2018, 04:23 PM   #17
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Re: Axle shafts too tight??

I'd hit Oreilly's again, pick up the tools (because it's free after all), buy two new bearings and two new seals.

Go home and try sliding the newly bought bearings onto your axleshaft to see how it fits. Then you'll have to decide from there how far you go.

It does sound like you put them in correctly too. But, maybe just a bad part or part number?

Look on the bright side, at least you didn't fill the pumpkin up with gear oil yet!
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Old 04-30-2018, 01:49 PM   #18
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Re: Axle shafts too tight??

SOLUTION !!!!

I bought another set ( third set ) of bearings from NAPA this time ans they went in with no problems. I'll post brand and part numbers if anybody wants them.
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