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Welding ruined the seals on my D60, any pointers on R&R?

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by BadDog, Apr 15, 2002.

  1. BadDog

    BadDog SOL Staff Member Super Moderator Author

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    Well, my D60 was tight and had no leaks. Now, after welding the tab for my hydro assist on (burned it in there good) it LITERALLY pours from both axle tubes and the pinion seal is seeping. Actually, it had a very minor seep from the pinion before, but not nearly this bad. Seriously, people were teasing me about "putting armor-all on the wrong side of the tires" while we were on Terminator! I had to find level ground to park it on just to try to keep some gear lube inside. I bet I lost at least 2 quarts out there, and it was topped off just days before going out due to installation of the Lock-Rite.

    So… This post has 2 points.

    1) Be careful welding on the axle housing, it can get you into a mess (literally). I’ve welded housings before but I have never had anything like this happen before. Although, this time I did get it awfully hot sticking that (roughly) 1” thick tab filling up a huge bevel. I *know* I got good penetration but it looks like I cooked the seals in doing it.

    2) Just exactly how bad is replacing the inner seals.

    I’ve done a pinion seal before but never the inner seals. Executioner was telling me about carefully setting the pinion pre-load (inch-pounds rotating the pinion) but I didn’t do that before. Didn’t follow a manual, just did it, and had no troubles out of it. Any tricks or “heads-up” warnings on doing this for the D60 front that I should know about?

    On the inner seals, again, I talked with Exe about it, and I looked at the D60 manual; it looks like a HUGE pain. Basically you have to pretty much strip the housing, and press the seals in from the carrier side of the tubes. Shouldn’t be too much trouble to just set the carrier back in (or rather beat, leaver, and otherwise force the SOB back in) with the same shims and not worry about the gear setup, right? Again, any warnings or tips on doing this (more) quickly or easily?

    Basically, I’m pretty sure I’ve got a handle on this from what I know (and have worked on in the past) combined with what I’ve been told and read. I just want to get feedback from those of you with experience before I screw up something just from my ignorance, or waste time and/or $$$$ just because I didn’t know I need some tool or process. Any suggestions appreciated.
     
  2. thatK30guy

    thatK30guy 1 ton status Premium Member

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    Russ, putting in the new seals is easy as doing the D44 and 10 bolt front axles.

    Just do the normal routine of removing the bearing hubs, rotors, calipers, shafts and take off the dif cover and remove the bearing caps. Pull the differential out and get a long bar of some kind to tap the seals out.

    Install the new seals using something to fit over them and another long bar thru the tubes and a hammer. I find the best thing to fit over the seals to seat them good without damaging them is to use one of those kingpin plastic bushings.

    Installation is reverse of removal. /forums/images/icons/wink.gif
     
  3. Grim-Reaper

    Grim-Reaper 3/4 ton status Author

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    It generaly takes about 200ftlb to start to crush the crush sleve. It is the right way to set the preload but most people don't do it because inlb torque wrenches are pretty hard to find and when you do they are not cheap. You want a beam style not a clicker if you do go looking for one. Torque the pinion nut to about 125ftlb and you shouldn't have any problem.
    Seals are a long afternoon job but not rocket science. Just make sure you don't push any dirt from the tubes into the diff when you reassemble. Might as well be ready to replace wheel seals also.
     
  4. thatK30guy

    thatK30guy 1 ton status Premium Member

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    I have done the pinion bearing pre-load using the inch-lbs. torque wrench, but not by setting a desired rating.

    To set the pre-load on pinions, you need to do the "rolling torque" method.
    This means to turn the torque wrench to get the proper torque reading when the recommended spec numbers show up.

    In other words, tighten the nut a little bit, check the torque, if it's not the recommmended spec, tighten a little more, recheck the torque, etc. etc.

    125 in.lbs. may not be the proper torque.

    According to my book:
    D60, new bearings - 20-40 in.lbs., used bearings - 10-20 in.lbs.
    14FF, new bearings - 25-35 in.lbs., used bearings - 5-15 in.lbs.

    The torque wrench should read any of these above numbers while turning the pinion.

    If the nut gets tightened too tight, do not back off and redo the method. Get a new crush sleeve and then start over.
     
  5. BadDog

    BadDog SOL Staff Member Super Moderator Author

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    I thought the D60 did not use a crush sleeve?

    On a front axle pinion, how critical is the rolling torque pre-load? Should I try to get one of these inch-pound torque wrenches? Maybe from a tool rental? I sure think (hope) I don't need to buy one since I don't expect this to be regular occurrence.

    While I’m at it, I think I’ll go ahead and do the seals in the C14. It’s leaking a little on the drivers side. Might as well install new seals all around. That way, whatever tools I need to borrow or rent, I'll have on hand...
     
  6. Grim-Reaper

    Grim-Reaper 3/4 ton status Author

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    Read my post again. I guess it wasn't real clear that I was talking about the pinion nut Tourqe after talking about bearing preload rated in inlb. I was trying to indicated to torque the pinion nut to 125 FOOT lb. Well really it's "Pound feet" is the correct term for the tightness of a bolt.
    Any way your pretty safe that your not going to exceed the bearing preload. When I was setting up on axle me and a bud messed with it and at about 125 lb on the pinion nut we were on the low side of used bearing preload. That was on a 12 bolt and used preload as I recall was 10-15 in.lb We were 11-12. That was after we had done a full set up only to figure out we had screwed up an put a damaged yoke on. So I checked the torq to remove it and it was about 175. I torqued up to 125 and we got the 11-12 in.lb reading. I put 175lb.ft on the pinion nut and came up to 13. That was about where we had set it the first time when we did the inital crush on a new sleve. I know I was over 200 to get the sleve crushing. We had the axle on a bench and my bud and I were playing tug of war between breaker Bar and axle housing. Me on the bar leaning one way and my bud on the axle tube leaning the other.
     
  7. bigdaddy89

    bigdaddy89 1/2 ton status

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    A trick I found on putting the inner seals back in was using a rubber mallet about the same size as the seal. Get it started a little and then put the mallet up against it, and then hit the mallet with a regular hammer to seat the seal. David
     
  8. MaxCrack

    MaxCrack 1/2 ton status

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    You are correct. No crush sleeve in a Dana 60. You are also correct in that you have to pull a lot out to get to the inner axle seals. But it is not really that bad.

    I completely stripped a Dana 60 (and I mean completely, knuckles, spindles, hubs, all the bearing races, ever thing was seperate from every other thing except the king pins) in about 2 hours my first try. Took a couple days to put it back together though.

    All you have to do is hubs , axles and carrier. Then knock out the seals with a long pole, put in the new ones and reassemble.
     
  9. thatK30guy

    thatK30guy 1 ton status Premium Member

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    LMAO!!! /forums/images/icons/laugh.gif Got me there, Grimmy! Yeah, I misread the "foot" for "inch" lbs. /forums/images/icons/tongue.gif

    My bad! /forums/images/icons/tongue.gif
     

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