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Discussion Starter #1
A friend got under my Jeep to paint mark my u-joints Caps for me (to try to catch before they go on a trail someplace). Good thing because he also noticed...driver Axle seal leaking. It was just a little weep and gear oil still absolutely full coming out the fill plug when checked. Otherwise my front axles are still in good shape. So rather than just replace the seal, time to pull them out and go RCV, and keep the stock as trail spares. So basically wasted the 60 seconds it took to paint mark the ujoints since they will come out. I hemmed and hawwed over whether to go RCV or not. I figure it this way, with the kind of wheeling I do, everything is going to break at some point. When the RCVs take out the gears or lockers, that will be when I just move up to a bigger Axle altogether.

Also on deck: Dynatrac ball joints. My stock ones are finally starting to go. Not to the point they are really bad, but would rather swap them out in the shop than on the trail.

And an issue we are hunting down. My driver side TRE at the tie rod was toast about 6 weeks ago. Replaced it (aftermarket one ton ends). The entire bolt had stripped, the castle nut was flopping - and all that was holding it together was the (bent and on verge of failure) cotter pin! The bolt was so bad we got the castle nut off...just using a whack from a pickle fork! Now the brand new one is flopping. Either a bad/wrong size bolt or bad/wrong size castle nut. Will swap it out brand new again. And if it is flopping again in 6 weeks, chief suspect is the hole in the knuckle has wallowed and time for a new knuckle.

And more a maintenance item: rear brakes are going to need done sometime soon. According to the Jeep dealer). No squeaking or anything tho yet, so having my four wheel shop look at them.
 

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So far so good with RCV for me. Well worth the money as far as I'm concerned. Smoothness in power while turning and no UJoint bind is bonus. I look forward to not changing UJoints every 6 months.
If the RCVs outlive 3 UJoint changes ( if they last me 2 years) then they have more then made up for the extra cost over chromoly shafts.
 

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So far so good with RCV for me. Well worth the money as far as I'm concerned. Smoothness in power while turning and no UJoint bind is bonus. I look forward to not changing UJoints every 6 months. If the RCVs outlive 3 UJoint changes ( if they last me 2 years) then they have more then made up for the extra cost over chromoly shafts.
Why would you have to change u-joints often with a better axle shaft?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
What front axle are you currently running?
Trussed stock D44

Are you still running stock brakes?

So far so good with my RCVs, I think you'll be happy.
Yep brakes still stock. About 5k on them with stock tires, about 30k on 37s.

I would stay with good ol chromo axles with full circle clips. I read horror story's working with RCV and warranty claims.

Time for a 0 flop Yeti tie rod :D
RCV warranty is in part reason for keeping stockers as spare. They require you send it in. Not good on a DD unless you have spares.

I have aluminum tie rod, what does the Yeti do better?
 

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I would stay with good ol chromo axles with full circle clips. I read horror story's working with RCV and warranty claims. Time for a 0 flop Yeti tie rod :D
Full circle clips and tack weld the caps. Best thing I've done on my jeep
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
The RCVs are awesome! Unfortunate byproduct tho - now my front passenger Axle seal is leaking. Perhaps when they installed it nicked the seal, I was told this is pretty common. So back in for surgery Tuesday.

The ball joints are nice too! Between the RCVs, ball joints, new tie rod ends (the passenger ended up being bad too so replaced both sides), and having the Jeep dealer clean up my steering wheel squeek (ended up some plastic part broke and was rubbing a bolt), it feels like I have a whole new front end and is awesome! The knuckles were still just fine.

Another thing I learned which ended up not being my issue but is something to look for with hydroassist - if your Jeep starts blowing out tie rod ends, two suspects: 1) the RAM mount has moved (and thus altered the travel of the ram - so in addition to marking u-joint Caps, consider marking your RAM mount as well so movement would be obvious) or 2) the RAM itself is not set for proper stroke (which there are spacers that can be inserted if needed). So basically at full lock the hydraulic ram if the stroke is too long or is altered is ramming the tie rod into the rod ends with a crap ton of force, hastening their demise.

Also replaced two tires. Front driver had a big gash so DT warrantied it out (trail wound lol). Both rears have maybe 5k on them so rotated and moved those up front. To keep even tread pattern in rear, I went ahead and bought another brand new tire. So now I have two brand new in the rear, two with 5kish in front, and TWO 37 inch spares in good shape, tho only one is mounted. So I should be in good shape for tires for a while. The Trail Grapplers are impressive beasts. Even with the two tires I have gashed (one sidewall, one right through the tread down to cord) - not one of them ever lost air. Those who know what I do with my tires know this says a lot lol. Altho the price has gone up. Stupidly expensive.

Saturday night need my rig to be in tip top shape - I am running my first 5.0 trail (out here we rate 1.0-5.0, and 5.0 is about the limit of a full body mild modified Jeep, beyond this a buggy is required). I have spare driveshaft ujoints and spare front and rear axle shafts. Given my propensity to eat tie rod ends, may get some spares of those too lol. Taking my full complement of extra fluids as well (usually cart these on harder trails or stuff farther from home). Getting everything torqued and greased up while they're doing the axle seals Tuesday.
 

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The RCVs are awesome! Unfortunate byproduct tho - now my front passenger Axle seal is leaking. Perhaps when they installed it nicked the seal, I was told this is pretty common. So back in for surgery Tuesday. The ball joints are nice too! Between the RCVs, ball joints, new tie rod ends (the passenger ended up being bad too so replaced both sides), and having the Jeep dealer clean up my steering wheel squeek (ended up some plastic part broke and was rubbing a bolt), it feels like I have a whole new front end and is awesome! The knuckles were still just fine. Another thing I learned which ended up not being my issue but is something to look for with hydroassist - if your Jeep starts blowing out tie rod ends, two suspects: 1) the RAM mount has moved (and thus altered the travel of the ram - so in addition to marking u-joint Caps, consider marking your RAM mount as well so movement would be obvious) or 2) the RAM itself is not set for proper stroke (which there are spacers that can be inserted if needed). So basically at full lock the hydraulic ram if the stroke is too long or is altered is ramming the tie rod into the rod ends with a crap ton of force, hastening their demise. Also replaced two tires. Front driver had a big gash so DT warrantied it out (trail wound lol). Both rears have maybe 5k on them so rotated and moved those up front. To keep even tread pattern in rear, I went ahead and bought another brand new tire. So now I have two brand new in the rear, two with 5kish in front, and TWO 37 inch spares in good shape, tho only one is mounted. So I should be in good shape for tires for a while. The Trail Grapplers are impressive beasts. Even with the two tires I have gashed (one sidewall, one right through the tread down to cord) - not one of them ever lost air. Those who know what I do with my tires know this says a lot lol. Altho the price has gone up. Stupidly expensive. Saturday night need my rig to be in tip top shape - I am running my first 5.0 trail (out here we rate 1.0-5.0, and 5.0 is about the limit of a full body mild modified Jeep, beyond this a buggy is required). I have spare driveshaft ujoints and spare front and rear axle shafts. Given my propensity to eat tie rod ends, may get some spares of those too lol. Taking my full complement of extra fluids as well (usually cart these on harder trails or stuff farther from home). Getting everything torqued and greased up while they're doing the axle seals Tuesday.
What rod ends are you running ?
 
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