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Greasabe or Non-greasable Spicer Ujoints

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by randy88k5, Jan 31, 2006.

?

Which would/do you run?

  1. Greasable U-joints

    23 vote(s)
    41.1%
  2. Non-greasable U-joints

    22 vote(s)
    39.3%
  3. U-joints dont matter when your nekked and eating cheetos

    11 vote(s)
    19.6%
  1. randy88k5

    randy88k5 1/2 ton status

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    I am looking at ujoints and want to run good joints. Ive had nothing but problems with the cheapies. I want to get the new Spicer Cold Forged (Life Series) Joints. I need 1310 and 1350 styles. Since the Cold Forged has been out for a bit, and people have been able to test them under real world circumstances, I wanted to get some opinions on them.

    I know the greasable version will have a reduction in strength simply because it has a holw through the cross, but have people seen that as a major drawback.

    I kind of wanted to run greasables, so I can maintain them easially.

    Is the ease of maintenance worth the reduction in strength?
    Is there a longevity issue with non-greasables in a weekend warrior?

    Any input would be appreciated.

    (Yes I did search, but I havent seen a lot of info on the cold forged series in particular, just the old standard ones)
     
  2. divorced

    divorced 3/4 ton status

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    I always get the greasable thru cap style. I run a lot of mud and water, so it's nice to be able to grease them. I know people say they are weaker than non-greasable, but I've never had any breakage problems.
     
  3. Chaddy

    Chaddy 1/2 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    I run the non-greasable's because the trunnion's are bigger and stronger.
     
  4. 6.2Blazer

    6.2Blazer 1/2 ton status

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    If you do the calculations the reduction in strength of the grease passages is very minor. For example, take a piece of metal rod the same diameter as the grease passage (maybe the diameter of a toothpick)......you could probably snap it in two by hand......that's about how much strength you lose.
     
  5. 73k5blazer

    73k5blazer Unplug the matrix cable from the back of your head Premium Member

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    This is a time honered question. Answer depneds on person.
    When I built my front axle, I installed 1 spicer greaseable and 1 spicer non-greasable, it's my lame attempt to answer the question. Now if only I could finish my truck :o to actually use it, then I might be able to prov ide some valuable insight.
     
  6. goldwing2000

    goldwing2000 Guest

    Mmmmm... cheetos...
     
  7. goldwing2000

    goldwing2000 Guest

    Oh... I've always used greasables in the past and always wore them out. Never broke one but always have the grease passage clog up and one cap dries out.

    I'm switching to solids and all 1350 drivelines when I swap in my beef axles.
     
  8. afroman006

    afroman006 1/2 ton status

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    Not to be a dick but have you ever handled steel? A piece that size (~1/8") might be breakable by hand if u had a long piece of low grade untreated steel but in a u-joint that area is about 3.5" long, surrounded by more material, and a higher grade treated steel. Not a good comparison is what I'm getting at. Besides, that "little bit of strength" could very well be the difference between breakage and survival.
     
  9. HarryH3

    HarryH3 1 ton status Author

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    I've read articles where they tested this myth by forcing U-joints to break on a testing machine that could measure the torque required to snap the joint. The difference in breaking strength between a solid U-joint and a greaseable U-joint wasn't measurable. :eek1: They both broke at the same torque value.

    I run greaseables so I can flush out water, dirt etc. by pumping new grease through.
     
  10. 6.2Blazer

    6.2Blazer 1/2 ton status

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    Why, yes I have. I'm a mechanical engineer and have performed strength tests on metal before......have you?

    Your comment about "surrounded by more metal" is also irrelevant to my example. Sure, surround a very small piece of metal by something that's not bendable by hand......of course you wouldn't be able to bend it.
     
  11. Ronnie4wd

    Ronnie4wd 1/2 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    I´m with you HarryH3 that small hole would not make it weaker.
    I´m not sure but I have heard that a small drilled hole in a piece of metal can strengthen it up
     
  12. 79k20350

    79k20350 3/4 ton status

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    i just got a set of non greaseables with my rebuild kit. there the 806-x's. those life series are some serious beef:D i bought them if anything more than just piece of mind. also the greasable joints have to be installed a certain way to be strongest. i remember seeing an article about in a a 4x4 mag. the way the forces are applied to the cross (where the hole for the zerk is) are differant when in a certain position and it reduces stress and the chance of breakage.
     
  13. afroman006

    afroman006 1/2 ton status

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    Again, didnt mean to offend. I am going to skule for mech engi right now but I havent had any materials classes yet. It just seems that logically, even that little bit of metal would help in a shear load like a u-joint.
     
  14. Zeus33rd

    Zeus33rd Smarter than you GMOTM Winner

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    The biggest reason the Spicer Life series joints are stronger than the greaseables is the material they're made out of and the method they're made. The greaseables are hot forged, the life series are cold forged. Cold forged= stronger. I'm sure the grease passeges play a minor roll in the strength dept, but the cold vs. hot forged material is the biggest reason.

    And to get back to the original post- I work for High Angle Driveline and have ALOT of experience installing and working with u-joints. HAD shafts will only get greasable joints if they are requested, or if we run out of the life series in that particular size. The greaseables are quite a bit harder to work with. During the time I've worked at HAD, I have never dropped a needle bearing on a life series joint..Ever. Even if I drop the cap, it bounces off the concrete and goes rolling accross the shop floor. The greasables are a different story, even dropping the caps on the bench from less than a foot knocks all the bearings over. The bearings don't fit as tight in the caps. If you don't get the cap perfectly square in the yoke before ya start pressing them in, a needle bearing almost always falls over and get's smashed when ya lean on the press. Which drives me crazy cause it's a pain in the ass taking everything back apart.The life series caps don't care what ya do to them, if I happen to get one started alittle crooked, I can just lean on the press, and they pop right into place. If you can handle a Spicer Life and greasable joint at the same time, you'd go with the Lifer.

    I just changed out the joints in the driveshaft on my Dodge Ram- 2 piece rear shaft with 3 1410 Spicer Life Series joints. They were the original joints installed at the factory in 1995 wih 175k miles on them. Every one of the caps still had grease in them. I wouldn't worry to much about the longevity of the Lifers. The only reason I can see to go with greasables is if you run alot of mud/water. Greasing them splooges all the crap out. Even that is almost a moot point cause the Lifers have really good seals in the caps to keep the crap out. The greasables just have a rubber boot thing. When ya grease them to flush them out, water and mud can get back in there almost as easy as it came out.

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    I voted non-greasable by the way.
     
  15. big83chevy4x4

    big83chevy4x4 3/4 ton status

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    i think your right, i just didn't realize it before, the only ujionts ive had a needle bearing drop is on a greasable joint, not the non greasables. i just though that i got good enough that it didn't happen to me anymore when i started using the non greasables on my truck.

    ive only broke 1 ujiont, it was a greasable (spicer i think) that was 21 years old. ive worn out plenty more of greasables, one was NAPAs super strength that was suppose to be a coldforged cross with hardened caps. killed it in 2 months, it shattered 2 caps on the diff side of the ujiont. i put a neapco greasable (was about to leave to go play, all they had) in it and ran it for 6 months before my axle wrap killed it.

    i vote non greasable
     
  16. 79k20350

    79k20350 3/4 ton status

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    alos the metal isnt just "a lil thicker" its solid. this mean that any stress from one area can be easily transmittted to another area for aditional support. just logicly thinking it would seem much stronger. but i could be wrong, im not a mechanical engineer, i just try to use common sense.
     
  17. 79k20350

    79k20350 3/4 ton status

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    i just put the lifers in my axles and i must say it sucked but i got em.:D continuing on what kid jethro was was the forging process is a big deal, i just thought that they made new greasable ones the same way? if you handle a life series non greasable try to take the cap off by hand. its not easy! the seals are incredible. you can actually hear them "click" when seated.
     
  18. 6.2Blazer

    6.2Blazer 1/2 ton status

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    First of all let me say that I am not advocating greasable joints over non-greasable, but rather just simply trying to clarify the strength differences.

    I don't believe the cross-drilled grease passages cause any stress concentrations......they should not.

    My front Dana 60 axle joints are greasable Spicers, but the next set will probably be non-greasable just so I don't have to mess with them. The newer Spicer greasable joints have one hell of a seal on them. Even after I ran them for around a year and had to remove them to swap in different stubshafts the caps were almost impossible to remove by hand when just pushed onto the cross. The seals have what appears to be three lips on them and fit really tight.
     
  19. rustyear

    rustyear Registered Member

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    about the zerk/non zerk u-joints...i use greasable, and use synthetic grease, the red stuff...it resists everything better than petroleum based grease does...but the main issue actually is how you install them...if you put the zerk fitting on the 'compression' side, that is, so that when your driveshaft turns it turns toward the zerk, rather than away from it, there basically is no difference in strength...just go ez when backing up, if possible, cuz then you are pulling away from the zerk fitting, which is the weaker of the two situations, but still a very minor difference
     
  20. goldwing2000

    goldwing2000 Guest

    LoL... four people voted for Cheetos. :haha:
     

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