Jeep CJ/Scrambler 1971-1986 Repair Guide

Axle Shaft, Bearing and Seal

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REMOVAL & INSTALLATION



See Figures 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5

1971 Models

The front axle shaft and universal joint assembly is removed as an assembly.

See the U-joint section of this section for a description of the three types used on these axles.

  1. Remove the wheel.
  2.  
  3. Remove the hub with a puller. If there are locking hubs, remove them as detailed in General Information & Maintenance .
  4.  
  5. Remove the axle shaft driving flange bolts.
  6.  
  7. Apply the foot brakes and remove the axle shaft flange with a puller.
  8.  
  9. Release the locking lip on the lockwasher and remove the outer nut, lockwasher, adjusting nut, and bearing lockwasher.
  10.  
  11. Remove the wheel hub and drum assembly with the bearings. Be careful not to damage the oil seal.
  12.  
  13. Remove the hydraulic brake tube and the brake backing plate screws.
  14.  
  15. Remove the spindle.
  16.  
  17. Remove axle shaft and universal joint assembly.
  18.  
  19. Single cross cardan type installation is the reverse of the removal procedure.
  20.  
  21. Bendix type installation is as follows:
    1. Enter the U-joint and shaft assembly into the housing. Mesh the splined end of the shaft with the differential and push into place.
    2.  
    3. Install the wheel bearing spindle.
    4.  
    5. Install the brake tube and backing plate.
    6.  
    7. Grease and assemble the wheel bearings and hub and drum on the spindle. Install the bearing washer and adjusting nut. Tighten the nut until a slight drag is felt, then back off 1 / 6 turn. Install remaining parts.
    8.  

  22.  
  23. Early Rzeppa type type requires a shimming procedure. Installation is the same as the Bendix type except that a shim pack must be installed between the driving flange and the wheel hub to determine the proper operating clearance for the U-joint. To do this:
    1. Install the drive flange on the axle splines without shims.
    2.  
    3. Install the axle nut and tighten it snugly.
    4.  
    5. Install two opposite flange bolts snugly.
    6.  
    7. Use a feeler gauge to measure the gap between the outer end of the hub and the inner face of the driving flange. This determines the amount of shimming to be used. It is necessary to install shims of a thickness equal to the measured gap plug 0.015-0.050 in. (0.381-1.27mm). If no gap is found, install a 0.010 in. shim.
    8.  
    9. Install the correct amount of shims, replace the flange and install the six bolts. Install the axle shaft nut and make sure that the proper end float has been obtained. To do this, back off the shaft nut so that a 0.050 in. feeler will fit between the nut and driving flange. Tap the end of the shaft with a soft mallet which will force in the shaft the amount of end float. Measure the clearance between the nut and driving flange. Clearance should be 0.015-0.050 in. (0.381-1.27mm).
    10.  

  24.  
  25. Late Rzeppa type installation is the same as the Bendix type except that a snapring is used to secure the outer end of the shaft controlling end float.
  26.  



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 1: Early model steering knuckle and spindle, component view



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 2: Dana 30 front drive axle components

1972-86

On models with locking hubs, refer to Locking Hub Removal and Installation.

  1. Remove the locking hub or hub cap. On models with disc brakes, remove the caliper.
  2.  
  3. Remove the drive flange snapring.
  4.  
  5. On models with disc brakes, remove the rotor hub bolts, cover and gasket. On models with drum brakes, remove the axle flange bolts, lockwashers and flatwashers.
  6.  
  7. If the axle is on the vehicle, apply the foot brakes. Remove the axle flange with a puller.
  8.  
  9. Release the locking lip of the lockwasher, and remove the outer nut, lockwasher, adjusting nut, and bearing lockwasher.
  10.  
  11. On models with the disc brakes, remove the bearing and rotor. On models with drum brakes, back off on the brake adjusting star wheel adjusters and remove the brake drum assembly with the bearings. Be careful not to damage the oil seal.
  12.  
  13. On models with drum brakes, remove the brake backing plate. If the axle is on the vehicle, it will first be necessary to disconnect the brake hose between the front brake line and the flexible connection. On models with disc brakes, remove the adapter and splash shield.
  14.  
  15. Remove the spindle and spindle bushing.
  16.  
  17. Remove the axle shaft and universal joint assembly.
  18.  
  19. Clean all parts.
  20.  
  21. Insert the universal joint and axle shaft assembly into the axle housing, being careful not to knock out the inner seal. Insert the splined end of the axle shaft into the differential and push into place.
  22.  
  23. Install the wheel bearing spindle and bushing.
  24.  
  25. Install the brake backing plate, or adapter and splash shield.
  26.  
  27. Grease and assemble the wheel bearings and oil seal.
  28.  
  29. Install the wheel hub and drum on the wheel bearing spindle. On disc brakes, install the rotor, hub, and caliper. Install the wheel bearing washer and adjusting nut. Tighten the nut to 50 ft. lbs., and back it off 1 / 6 - 1 / 4 turn while rotating the hub. Install the lockwasher and nut, tighten the nut to 50 ft. lbs. and then bend the lip of the lockwasher over onto the locknut.
  30.  
  31. Install the drive flange and gasket onto the hub and attach with six capscrews and lockwashers. Torque the capscrews to 30 ft. lbs. in an alternate and even pattern. Install the snapring onto the outer end of the axle shaft.
  32.  
  33. Install the hub cap.
  34.  
  35. Install the wheel, lug nuts, and wheel disc.
  36.  
  37. If the tube was installed with the axle assembly on the vehicle, check the front wheel alignment, bleed the brakes and lubricate the front axle universal joints.
  38.  



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 3: Late model spindle and knuckle assembly



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 4: Spindle bearing location



Click image to see an enlarged view

Fig. Fig. 5: The front axle shaft is pulled out through the knuckle

 
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