I was changing the gear lube in the D35 of my new '98 Sport. I found some unsettling evidence of previous carnage.
Looks like the splines of a broken axle shaft. What was so unsettling is that these pieces were in the bottom of the gear housing. So, expecting the worse and hoping for the best, I pulled the drivers side axle shaft so I could do further inspection. These pieces were fished out of the axle tube
Some of the pieces had actually melted into the axle tube itself
There are metal shavings EVERYWHERE.
A gouged bearing.
So I have a lot of cleaning still ahead. The axle shaft doesn't look too bad (considering how much loose metal was in there).
I'm planning on an 8.8 in the near future and don't want to put any money (other than new bearing/seals) into an axle I'm not planning on keeping. I'm thinking I can get by with this for a little longer until I have all my 8.8 money ready...whatcha think? , I hope the passenger side isn't any worse. I see now why the PO won't return my calls.