LUBRICATION & ADJUSTMENT
Only front wheel bearings require periodic service. A premium high melting point grease must be used. Long fiber type greases must not be used. This service is recommended at the intervals in the "Maintenance Intervals" chart or whenever the truck has been driven in water up to the hubs.Two Wheel Drive Models
- Remove the wheel and tire assembly, and the brake drum or brake caliper. See for details.
- Remove the hub and disc as an assembly. Remove the caliper mounting bolts and insert a block between the brake pads as the caliper is removed. Remove the caliper and wire it out of the way.
- Pry out the grease cap, cotter pin, spindle nut, and washer, then remove the hub. Do not drop the wheel bearings.
- Remove the outer roller bearing assembly from the hub. The inner bearing assembly will remain in the hub and may be removed after prying out the inner seal. Discard the seal.
- Clean all parts in solvent (air dry) and check for excessive wear or damage.
- Using a hammer and drift, remove the bearing cups from the hub. When installing new cups, make sure that they are not cocked and that they are fully seated against the hub shoulder.
- Pack both wheel bearings using high melting point wheel bearing grease made for disc brakes. Ordinary grease will melt and ooze out, ruining the pads. Place a healthy glob of grease in the palm of one hand and force the edge of the bearing into it so that the grease fills the bearing. Do this until the whole bearing is packed. Grease packing tools are available to make this job a lot less messy. There are also tools which make it possible to grease the inner bearing without removing it or the disc from the spindle.
- Place the inner bearing in the hub and install a new inner seal, making sure that the seal flange faces the bearing cup.
- Carefully install the wheel hub over the spindle.
- Using your hands, firmly press the outer bearing into the hub. Install the spindle washer and nut.
- To adjust the bearings on 1969 through 1971 models, tighten the adjusting nut to 15 ft. lbs. while rotating the hub. Back the nut off one flat ( 1 / 6 turn) and insert a new cotter pin. If the nut and spindle hole do not align, back the nut off slightly. There should be 0.001-0.008 in. end-play in the bearing. This can be measured with a dial indicator, if you wish. Install the dust cap, wheel, and tire.
- To adjust the bearings on 1972 and later models, spin the wheel hub by hand and tighten the nut until it is just snug (12 ft. lbs.). Back off the nut until it is loose, then tighten it finger-tight. Loosen the nut until either hole in the spindle lines up with a slot in the nut and insert a new cotter pin. There should be 0.001-0.008 in. end-play in the bearing through 1973, and 0.001-0.010 in. from 1974. This can be measured with a dial indicator, if you wish.
- Replace the dust cap, wheel and tire.
This procedure requires snapring pliers and a special hub nut wrench. It isn't very easy without them.
- Remove the wheel and tire. If you have locking front hubs, lock them. Remove the outer retaining plate Allen head bolts and take off the plate, O-ring, and knob. Take out the large snapring inside the hub and remove the outer clutch retaining ring and actuating cam body. This is a lot easier with snapring pliers. Relieve pressure on the axle shaft snapring and remove it. Take out the axle shaft sleeve and clutch ring assembly and the inner clutch ring and bushing assembly. Remove the spring and retainer plate.
You will have to modify this procedure if you have locking hubs other than the factory installed type.
- If you don't have locking front hubs, remove the hub cap and snapring. Remove the drive gear by prying out with a prybar. Watch it, there is a spring behind the gear. Remove the spring.
- Remove the wheel bearing outer locknut, lock ring, and wheel bearing inner adjusting nut. A special wrench is required.
- Remove the brake disc assembly and outer wheel bearing. Remove the spring retainer plate if you don't have locking hubs. See for details on brake drum or disc and caliper removal.
- Remove the oil seal and inner bearing cone from the hub using a brass drift and hammer. Discard the oil seal. Use the drift to remove the inner and outer bearing cups.
- Check the condition of the spindle bearing. If you have drum brakes, remove the grease retainer, gasket, and backing plate after removing the bolts. Unbolt the spindle and tap it with a soft hammer to break it loose. Remove the spindle and check the condition of the thrust washer, replacing it if worn. Now you can remove the oil seal and spindle roller bearing.
The spindle bearings must be greased each time the wheel bearings are serviced.
- Clean all parts in solvent, dry, and check for wear or damage.
- Pack both wheel bearings (and the spindle bearing) using wheel bearing grease. Place a healthy glob of grease in the palm of one hand and force the edge of the bearing into it so that grease fills the bearing. Do this until the whole bearing is packed. Grease packing tools are available to make this job a lot less messy.
- To reassemble the spindle: drive the repacked bearing into the spindle and install the grease seal onto the slinger with the lip toward the spindle. It would be best to replace the axle shaft slinger when the spindle seal is replaced. See Axle Shaft Removal and Overhaul in for details.
- To reassemble the wheel bearings: drive the outer bearing cup into the hub, replace the inner bearing cup, and insert the repacked bearing.
- Install the disc or drum and outer wheel bearing to the spindle.
- Adjust the bearings by rotating the hub and torquing the inner adjusting nut to 50 ft. lbs., then loosening it and retorquing to 35 ft. lbs., still rotating the hub. Next, back the nut off 3 / 8 turn or less. Turn the nut to the nearest hole in the lockwasher. Install the outer locknut and torque to a minimum of 50 ft. lbs. through 1978 and 80 ft. lbs. for 1979 and later models. There should be 0.001-0.010 in. bearing end-play. This can be measured with a dial indicator.
- Replace the brake components.
- Lubricate the locking hub components with high temperature grease. Install the spring retainer plate with the flange side to the bearing and seat it against the outer bearing cup. Install the pressure spring with the large end against the retainer plate. Place the inner clutch ring and bushing assembly into the axle shaft sleeve and clutch ring assembly. Push in the assembly and install the axle shaft snapring. If there are two axle shaft snapring grooves use the inner one.
You can install a 7 / 16 in. bolt in the axle end and pull to aid in seating the snapring.
Install the actuating cam body with the cams out, the outer clutch retaining ring, and the internal snapring. Install a new O-ring, then install the actuating knob and retaining plate into the lock position. The grooves in the knob must fit into the actuator cam body. Install the cover bolts and seals.
- Without locking hubs, replace the snapring and hub cap. If there are two axle shaft snapring grooves use the inner one.