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Old 12-03-2002, 04:24   #1 (permalink)
NB & NCII V8 Fairlanes
 
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Universal Joints on Aluminium Prop Shaft

The universal joints (UJs) in my 5.0 Lite NC Fairlane are shot. I have discovered that it has an Aluminium prop shaft (well unlike the one in my NB, a magnet won't attach to it or its ends). The Ford factory manual and some aftermarket ones warn that you need endurium coated UJs so the steel on the bearing caps doesn't react with the aluminium and cause premature driveline failure (I assume corroded then cracked shaft ends).

Ford have UJs to fit at $67:00 each but my dealer can't tell me if they are coated or not but says no seperate UJ part is listed for the aluminium compared to the steel shaft. Does anyone know if these $67 UJ from Ford are coated as prescribed?

I can get good quality aftermarket uncoated UJ's SKF branded for $21 each (SKFBEA1094 OR RUJ6000 OR K5-13 XR OR VKUA K5.13XR OR UJ 38.9811 - Five different part numbers on the box).

I found have found a supplier of coated UJ's in the USA - Neapco See their catalogue at http://www.neapco.com/pdf/2002universaljointcatalog.pdf or their website at http://www.neapco.com/index.

I also emailed SKF as their USA arm seem to have a loose connection with Neapco (supply them with bearings) to see if they stock Neapco parts, have other coated UJs or warrant my driveshaft against failure if I fit their steels. I haven't had a reply yet (only sent email sunday).

Numerous aftermarket suppliers say they fit standard steel UJs and I shouldn't worry. Most aftermarket parts catalogues also show the standard SKF part for both steel and aluminium drive shafts (and many show the two types). Any thoughts? Anyone have a aluminium shaft and had any experience with this issue?
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Old 12-03-2002, 15:57   #2 (permalink)
Two SC 61's = trouble
 
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I would just coat them with a graphite type grease as used in electrical connections from tinned copper to aluminium..Besides I don't think steel and alu have a problem with electronisis??The graphite being a conductor will prevent that and water/ moisture getting in there anyway. I wouldn't worry about it though.We don't have salt on our roads here as in Canada / Northern U.S..
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Old 12-05-2002, 05:45   #3 (permalink)
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The graphite would be be wiped off when you press the bearing caps into the aluminium joint. SKF said in their reply "This particular size uni joint is not available in Australia with Endurion coating.
This is due to the fact that it is only required where salt is used on the roads to counteract snow and slush (as in Europe). Normal driving conditions in Australia do not warrant its use here."

Perhaps the steel/aluminium mix needs salt as a catalyst. In any event it would seem SKF might want to do some market research in rural WA with its salination problems and salt effected roads.

I picked up the Ford ones today they appear to be a spicer brand joint and endirium coated.
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Old 12-07-2002, 22:49   #4 (permalink)
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Well what a pain in the butt job putting in the new universal joints has been.

First I had to take a gas torch to the rear bolts to get the drive shaft off. The thread locking compound seems have bonded with the nuts and bolts and the nuts rusted to the face of the circular yoke. I know we want the thread locking compound to bond a bit but even after loosening the nuts I still had to keep reheating them so could keep turning them while I was taking them off.

Second one of the rusted in bearing caps buckled when I pressed it out digging a little groove in the soft aluminium yoke and peeling of and a few mm on the outside where the circlip retaining ring is.

Third I can't get the circlips in as the caps won't go down on the spider far enough.

Fourth I broke one of the nice expensive endirium coated joints trying to press a cap far enough to get the clip on.

So I have welded in a tiny replacement bit (1mm X 5 mm) and used a die grinder to put the missing part of the circlip groove in the welded on bit to fix the damage and so it will still hold a circlip. I will grind down the circlips to fit and will have to buy another U joint Monday

I have replaced uj on many cars without any such hassles. I think the lesson here is a) I should have stayed with the old fashioned nylon hammer technique rather than used a hydraulic press and b) I should have left it to another weekend where I was less tired and less rushed e) Aluminium drive shafts are very soft and need extra special care.
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Old 12-07-2002, 23:02   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Aussiblue
Well what a pain in the butt job putting in the new universal joints has been.

First I had to take a gas torch to the rear bolts to get the drive shaft off. The thread locking compound seems have bonded with the nuts and bolts and the nuts rusted to the face of the circular yoke. I know we want the thread locking compound to bond a bit
Yes that blue loctite stuff on the bolts is ridiculous. Normally a rattle gun job. If you think that stuff is bad, wait till you have to remove rear AU caliper bolts. They have yellow stuff that makes that blue stuff look piss weak. Ford (or holden for that matter) haven't needed loctite on these componants for the last 50 years so I don't know why they had to start to in ED.
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Old 12-08-2002, 05:35   #6 (permalink)
Two SC 61's = trouble
 
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I'v used a vice to press them in. Seems to have more control..
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Old 12-08-2002, 07:10   #7 (permalink)
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It all back together and working. One tip: I replaced the G clips with internal C clips that I noticed were available with the after market non endurium coated joints. They fit in without having to be ground down and are a nice tight fit.
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Old 12-10-2002, 00:55   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by WBT56
If you think that stuff is bad, wait till you have to remove rear AU caliper bolts. They have yellow stuff that makes that blue stuff look piss weak.
When I was undoing them it felt like I was stripping the thread clean off the bolt!
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