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Mitchness 04-14-2011 02:32 AM

A question for all you TJers
More precisely those of you who've busted an axle joint on the trail (or just "out there"). What's failed the most, the joint, the yoke, or both? Don't need to know if the shaft, or ring/pinion broke, just the axle joints. Oh, and this is for those running stock axles, no chromoly business.

Thank you for your input. :flowers:

solman 04-14-2011 02:34 AM

I lost my rear u joint on the rear shaft on the highway 90 miles from home after a day of hard wheeling. I had to drive it all the way home in front wheel drive. I keep a few spares now :)

Jerry Bransford 04-14-2011 10:51 AM

So far as the front axle shaft goes, the u-joint normally breaks only after one or more of the "ears" (which holds the u-joint) on the inner or outer axle shaft stretches which releases the u-joint to spin free and ultimately break.

So in the front axle shaft, it's usually to be at least two and possible three failures. The inner and/or outer axle shaft together with the u-joint. Seldom will the front axle shaft u-joint break first without the u-joint ears on one or both axle shafts also being damaged.

Mitchness 04-14-2011 01:49 PM

So what you're saying is that both fail, but it's the yoke ears that fail first. By spreading the ears out and away from the joint. Not so much by actually breaking the ears or wallowing out the cap holes?

Thanks Jerry!

Lance03 04-14-2011 04:10 PM

Come on Mitch, You know that those square eyed Jeeps break more then the round eyed ones.

Mitchness 04-14-2011 06:14 PM

Well, what I'm trying to determine is if it's actually worth going to TJ shafts. TJ shafts, while using larger joints, retain the same size yoke. So I would think the TJ yoke would be weaker than the smaller-jointed YJ yoke. Just trying to figure out if that theory holds any water. :confused:

Jerry Bransford 04-14-2011 06:35 PM

The one-piece TJ shafts have bigger ears and bigger 297 size u-joints than pre-95 YJs so the TJ shafts are a better way to go no matter how you look at it.

Mitchness 04-15-2011 12:25 PM


Originally Posted by Jerry Bransford (Post 1179180)
The one-piece TJ shafts have bigger ears and bigger 297 size u-joints than pre-95 YJs so the TJ shafts are a better way to go no matter how you look at it.

Are you sure (not trying to be an @$$, I'm honestly asking)? These ears look to be the same size when set side by side.

Jerry Bransford 04-15-2011 02:14 PM

Yes I'm sure. Older YJs use the smaller 260 size u-joint. '95 and newer use the larger 297 size u-joint.

Mitchness 04-15-2011 04:33 PM

Crap, I'm not doing a very good job of being clear; I apologize. I know that TJ shafts use larger joints. I'm asking if the ears are actually larger/wider/thicker. The TJ ones look (to me) to be the same size/thickness, just with a larger hole for the larger joint cap. Here, hopefully a picture will be clearer than I'm being.

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