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Old 03-20-2012, 12:03 PM   #1
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Front drive shaft removal ?

Ok so I have been having a tapping noise that seemed to be coming from the front area of jeep.. Had a local old school mechanic look at it and he seems to think I need to have the u -joints on the front drive shaft rebuilt and if that is not it then it's the front differential .. My question is can I run my jeep without that front drive shaft on temporarily wile I get it rebuilt ?

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Old 03-20-2012, 12:06 PM   #2
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Yes, you can drive without the front shaft. That is a good way to diagnose where the noise is coming from as well.

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Old 03-20-2012, 12:09 PM   #3
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How do I tell if u joints are bad ? Or if it's differential ? And thank you for the info .. I love this forum
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Old 03-20-2012, 12:13 PM   #4
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If a u-joint is bad it should be fairly obvious when you remove the shaft. Saying "the problem could be the front differential" is pretty vague, so I'm not sure what to tell you for that. All you've told us is that you have a tapping sound coming from the front of the Jeep, which isn't much. More detail would help if possible.

Start by removing the front shaft and seeing if that helps. If it does, we can assist you from there. If not, you'll have to do some more diagnosing.
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Old 03-20-2012, 12:22 PM   #5
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How do I tell if u joints are bad ? Or if it's differential ? And thank you for the info .. I love this forum
Excessive play and/or noise when you reach down underneath and turn or attempt to rotate your front drive shaft by hand. Just look at the u-joints at your axle or drive shaft ends.

Angry sparrows are typically indicative of issues relating to u-joint needle bearings, either disintegrating or requiring lubricant.
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Old 03-20-2012, 12:35 PM   #6
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Angry sparrows ? Meaning like an annoying spitting or flapping sound ? Cause that's what I got..
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Old 03-20-2012, 12:46 PM   #7
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Angry sparrows ? Meaning like an annoying spitting or flapping sound ? Cause that's what I got..
Angry sparrows as in chirping and squeaking.
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Old 03-20-2012, 12:57 PM   #8
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I had it after a two day wheeling trip, angry sparrows at the yoke end of the front driveshaft, popped a new u joint in there, vualah.

Just pull the driveshaft at the diff, and tcase, and drive it. No noise, u joints.

You might as well replace the double cardan end at the tcase if this sound is just from driving and no excessive wheeling in dust, dirt and water. It is harder to do, but can be easily done at home. Just FYI the bolts on the yoke of the TC where the driveshaft bolts too are a PITA with the skid plate on, you will need to put the Jeep in neutral and roll it forward or backwards to spin the yoke so that each bolt is accessible.

Oh and dont strip those bolts, or youll hate life.
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Old 03-20-2012, 01:18 PM   #9
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the cardan

if i remove the the drive shaft to get the u joints replaced wont i have to take tha cardan off any way to drive it ? wont it make a hell of a noise if i dont remove that too ?
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Old 03-20-2012, 01:23 PM   #10
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if i remove the the drive shaft to get the u joints replaced wont i have to take tha cardan off any way to drive it ? wont it make a hell of a noise if i dont remove that too ?
The cardan is part of the driveshaft, it comes off with the driveshaft. A double-cardin is nothing more than 2 u-joints held together by a centering joint mechanism with is welded to the end of the driveshaft.
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Old 03-20-2012, 02:35 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jerry Bransford
The cardan is part of the driveshaft, it comes off with the driveshaft. A double-cardin is nothing more than 2 u-joints held together by a centering joint mechanism with is welded to the end of the driveshaft.
This. And it wont make any noise. But you have to remove both ends before driving it. But to just change the front, you need only to remove the front and push the driveshaft backwards, it slips inside itself.
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Old 03-20-2012, 03:23 PM   #12
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thank you guys.. you have been a great help.. i hope this is my problem and i dont have to get into the differential..
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Old 03-20-2012, 03:31 PM   #13
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Be sure to spray those bolts with a good penetration oil, maybe even a couple of times. P B Blaster or something like it and no WD-40 isn't a penetrating oil.
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Old 03-20-2012, 05:06 PM   #14
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I just popped my front Drive shaft off the other day for the first time since owning it. Pretty easy, 4 - 8mm sized head bolts on one end, four on the other end, push towards the front to get off the tcase, pull back to get off the front diff...and bingo, big walkin stick!
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Old 03-20-2012, 05:20 PM   #15
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another way to check for a bad U Joint is after driving it for a bit the bad joint is usually feel much warmer or hot compared to others.
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Old 03-20-2012, 07:53 PM   #16
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But you have to remove both ends before driving it.
For a simple test of the front driveshaft, all that needs to be disconnected is the front and then secure it up out of the way. It won't turn in 2wd when connected to the t-case. It could actually be driven indefinitely like that if need be.
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Old 03-20-2012, 08:17 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Jerry Bransford
For a simple test of the front driveshaft, all that needs to be disconnected is the front and then secure it up out of the way. It won't turn in 2wd when connected to the t-case. It could actually be driven indefinitely like that if need be.
I was just meaning simply if you had it sitting there. Lol, obvious yes but youd be surprised with some people.
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Old 03-20-2012, 08:25 PM   #18
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When puting the bolts back on do u have to torque them or lock tight them or just tighten them ?
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Old 03-20-2012, 08:27 PM   #19
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When puting the bolts back on do u have to torque them or lock tight them or just tighten them ?
I use medium-strength Blue Locktite on my u-joint bolts. They don't need to be overtightened, simply use a small combination open-end/box-end 8mm wrench to snug them up and that's tight enough. Or a 1/4" drive ratchet and 8mm socket for those that a socket can fit onto.
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Old 03-20-2012, 09:07 PM   #20
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Thank you
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Old 03-20-2012, 11:16 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IndyJeepMan
I had it after a two day wheeling trip, angry sparrows at the yoke end of the front driveshaft, popped a new u joint in there, vualah.

Just pull the driveshaft at the diff, and tcase, and drive it. No noise, u joints.

You might as well replace the double cardan end at the tcase if this sound is just from driving and no excessive wheeling in dust, dirt and water. It is harder to do, but can be easily done at home. Just FYI the bolts on the yoke of the TC where the driveshaft bolts too are a PITA with the skid plate on, you will need to put the Jeep in neutral and roll it forward or backwards to spin the yoke so that each bolt is accessible.

Oh and dont strip those bolts, or youll hate life.
Guess what I did ... Yup stripped 1 of the 4 back by the transfer case FML had to drop the skid plate cause I couldn't get a good bite on it .. It's off now . Now gotta get a new bolt after I get the u joints looked at tomorrow .. As soon as that wrench slipped I thought of your post and thought SOB I did it
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Old 03-20-2012, 11:26 PM   #22
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i know hind sight sucks but if you take the front straps off first, or put it the fronts on last, you can have some one (or use your knee, head, hip) to hold the drive shaft at a different angle to get the hard one....theres always one that is a pain to get to from the drive shaft angle.

8mm 12pt closed end box wrench works best IMO
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Old 03-21-2012, 07:31 AM   #23
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Guess what I did ... Yup stripped 1 of the 4 back by the transfer case FML had to drop the skid plate cause I couldn't get a good bite on it .. It's off now . Now gotta get a new bolt after I get the u joints looked at tomorrow .. As soon as that wrench slipped I thought of your post and thought SOB I did it
Glad you got it off! But thats was hilarious lol.

Its okay we all do it, and to be honest with the orientation of the bolts the small size and rather soft bolt heads, it happens often.
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Old 03-21-2012, 07:37 AM   #24
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I can laugh now .. Was swearing like a sailor when it happen now I don't know anything about u joints but are they just supposed to come apart ? When I got the axle off and set it down the caps on the one on front fell apart and all the little pins came out.. Well not all of them but like a 1/4 of them.. But I thought that couldn't be good
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Old 03-21-2012, 07:39 AM   #25
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I can laugh now .. Was swearing like a sailor when it happen now I don't know anything about u joints but are they just supposed to come apart ? When I got the axle off and set it down the caps on the one on front fell apart and all the little pins came out.. Well not all of them but like a 1/4 of them.. But I thought that couldn't be good
Were they rather dry inside? And yes U joints do come apartc but they dont just fall apart lol.
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Old 03-21-2012, 07:43 AM   #26
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Have you ever seen pictures where people are showing parts they carry on the trail? You'll commonly see people put tape around spare u-joints to keep them from coming apart, so yes the caps can easily come off. New u-joints with a good amount of fresh grease tend to hold their caps on better, but older u-joints that have been used won't hold their caps as well.

If the pins look to be in good condition and there is plenty of grease, the joint is probably fine. But if you have a good many miles on your Jeep and you don't know when they were last replaced you might want to think about replacing them while you've got the shaft out.

Before you go replacing things, did you drive without the shaft to see if that fixed your noise problems or not?
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Old 03-21-2012, 07:48 AM   #27
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They were not completely dry.. And I will be diving here in a little bit to see if it fixed my problem .. Was to late last night and Gotta get kids ready now I'll keep you guys posted
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Old 03-21-2012, 08:50 AM   #28
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Now I'm worried .. Still got the ticking noise.. Seems to only be when I'm moving and have it in gear and hitting throttle .. That's when it's loudest anyway ..
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Old 03-21-2012, 09:25 AM   #29
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Now I'm worried .. Still got the ticking noise.. Seems to only be when I'm moving and have it in gear and hitting throttle .. That's when it's loudest anyway ..
Rear u joints? Or is it indefinetly louder in the front?
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Old 03-21-2012, 10:02 AM   #30
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I cant pinpoint cause it sounds like its under shifter.. but if it was the rear u joints would it get quieter when i switch into neutral when im moving ? but if i hit the gas when i have in in neutral and rev it wile im moving i can hear it..

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