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U joint replacement


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#1 datzenmike

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Posted 21 December 2007 - 07:37 PM

A squeak, increasing with speed, like Mini Mouse at orgasm is a sure sign that one or more U joints has gone dry on your truck. (or car) Soon after, the needle bearings will break and or seize briefly, sometimes producing a 'ping' sound, not unlike a light hammer tap on the hollow drive shaft, when under load. Sometimes the U joint won't do either but, will go directly to loose, causing the drive shaft to move off center and wobble. That's a lot of weight spinning around under there, and it only takes a little slack, to cause a lot of vibration. As the vibration increases, so does the wear, and the needle bearings will fall out. It's only a matter of time until the trunnion (the cross shaped thing) wears a hole in the bearing cap and ruins the yoke or worse flies apart. You do not want 30 lbs of violently spinning metal coming loose just a foot away from your valuable <em>parts</em>.

Keep your U joints greased and inspected for wear (looseness) every 3-4 months. Some are permanently sealed (don't last any longer, maybe cheaper) get replacement ones that you can grease.

To inspect, I leave in neutral, raise one rear wheel and grab opposite sides of the yoke and try to twist in opposite directions. Next i push and pull at right angles to drive shaft rotation. Don't be shy, really lean on it! There should not be ANY looseness in the U joint itself. Rotate the drive shaft and inspect for any damage such as dents or worse a wobble. A dent doesn't mean it needs replacing but it does indicate that it was hit pretty hard and may have bent the shaft. Don't mistake the rear end gear lash as looseness. The shaft should turn smoothly with no binding, squeaking or roughness. Look for oily discoloration around the bearing cap seals, a sure sign that grease is leaking out.

OK we have located a possible candidate for replacement so mark the yoke so you can re-assemble it in the same relation. First remove the 'C' clips or split washers. A screw driver works but they sometimes fly out, so be careful. A new joint should have replacement ones, USE them! A little WD-40 is good now.

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Well, you can use a vice with two different size sockets... or, give the yoke a few smart raps with a hammer and the inertia of the trunnion and the other yoke will drive the bearing cap out. Flip over and do the other side. Wear ear plugs and don't hit the shaft pipe, only the solid yoke. A 4-5 lb hammer works best! When the second cap is half way out there may be enough room for the trunnion to fall out. That's OK finish driving the cap out with a punch, or twist out with pliers.

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Two caps are off and you can see the row of needle bearings and the grease seal. Now do the other half.

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A vice works best for assembly. Be sure that the needle bearings don't fall out of place and get crushed, check constantly until well started. One side will always finish going in before the other.

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As soon as one side is far enough in, install the NEW 'C' clip to hold it. Yes, I'm reusing the old clip because I wasn't replacing the joint, only the yoke for one with a longer spline (bottom photo) You may have to tap the other cap in against it to make enough room for the other clip. Here the left side is in and being clipped so it won't pop out while pressing the other side in.

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Well, surprise! This little piggy has gone dry for whatever reason and water has rusted it and worn marks into the trunnion. Squealed like a pig. Sometimes the bearings fall out in in chunks. A U joint with a grease nipple will flush out water and any dirt and keep fresh grease in there.

Copy%20of%2000270013.jpg

For $5 get the rear tranny seal and replace it any time the shaft is out.

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Remember: "Don't Bogart that joint" get it replaced before it smokes you!


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#2 pl521sss

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Posted 21 December 2007 - 09:03 PM

Nice write up Mike.
Your tech notes on drive shaft angle and vibration is pretty too.
Goes hand in hand with this I think.

#3 650savag

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Posted 22 December 2007 - 01:44 PM

Thanks Mike for the good article and especially the great pics. This will sure help on my next u-joint job. I sure won't be guilty of letting one bite me in the rear-end again. I know the true meaning now of the old saying (an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure)! Dan
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#4 bonvo

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Posted 05 March 2008 - 11:28 PM

[quote name='datzenmike']A squeak, increasing with speed, like Mini Mouse at orgasm is a sure sign that one or more U joints has gone dry on your truck. (or car)
what i wanna know is how do you know what noises minnie mouse makes at orgasum :lol::lol::lol:

the first rule of Ratsun is you don't talk about Ratsun... no wait thats fight club.....


....the first rule of Ratsun is PICS OR BAN! :fu:



http://community.rat...on-resurection/
http://www.build-thr...1/#comment-5259

http://community.rat...-bought-a-what/

 

its like pikachu cuz its always his go to, the ol relaiable, looks cute kicks ass on the reg. and the 610 is charizard.... when ya really need to lay down some shit. lol - skib

 


#5 hang_510

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Posted 06 March 2008 - 01:14 AM

^he was her first ;)

"I can spend time working on the Dattos, or wasting money at the strip club. You make the call." :D


I'll put on chain mail and a dirt bike tire jock strap and drive it!!!!!


#6 fryanbacon

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Posted 03 April 2008 - 01:24 PM

hey man can you put the pics up again? looks like they're "moved or deleted"

#7 datzenmike

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Posted 03 April 2008 - 02:03 PM

I've P/Md Thomas, who was kind enough to replace the auto transmission pictures in the Drivetrain 'sticky' for me. This was totally my fault. Thank you again Thomas.

Hopefully the U-joint pictures will be up soon.

mike

edit: Wow, up faster than I could wright this!!!!!!!

BTW I wasn't Mini's first...... but I sure spoiled her for Mickey.
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#8 fryanbacon

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Posted 03 April 2008 - 02:26 PM

I've P/Md Thomas, who was kind enough to replace the auto transmission pictures in the Drivetrain 'sticky' for me. This was totally my fault. Thank you again Thomas.

Hopefully the U-joint pictures will be up soon.

mike

edit: Wow, up faster than I could wright this!!!!!!!

BTW I wasn't Mini's first...... but I sure spoiled her for Mickey.



THANKS MAN! you rock

#9 ruen145

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Posted 12 November 2008 - 04:19 PM

mann my 620 viberates like hell and it sounds like something is scratching near the transmission but not sure if it is the u joint help please:)

#10 datzenmike

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Posted 12 November 2008 - 04:42 PM

Probably the rubber isolation ring around the hanger bearing has rotted off. Take a look under there. The drive shaft is made of two pieces with a U joint at each end and one in the middle. Just forward of the middle U joint will be a wrap around support on the drive shaft. Between the support and the drive shaft is a rubber doughnut inside a thin metal ring that looks like this on the rear side :

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... and like this on the front side:

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#11 DISLEXICDIME

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Posted 19 November 2009 - 05:45 PM

why is this not a sticky or on the faq page ?

#12 datzenmike

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Posted 19 November 2009 - 06:03 PM

shrug
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#13 ohpyramids

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Posted 19 November 2009 - 10:04 PM

this is really going to help me! thanks mike!

#14 mklotz70

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Posted 20 November 2009 - 04:44 AM

Sweet writeup!! I'll be using this info for sure!! I've done them, but the method of hammer on the yoke instead of the cup...nice!!
Don't have to be too bright to be me!! :D
Sadly, I prove this nearly everyday!!! :(
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#15 Braden

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Posted 20 November 2009 - 08:24 AM

be sure to get the greasable u joints to prevent yourself from doing this again!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! grease them every oil change or when you check your oil or tire pressure!!!
"If we ever forget that we are one nation under God, then we will be a nation gone under." -Ronald Reagan

#16 stevensonDNL

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Posted 20 November 2009 - 09:17 AM

Thanks Datzenmike and crew for a very informative and helpful writeup with photos. Is the rubber donut still available at the auto parts stores? The problem I have is not any squeaks or consistent drivetrain vibration ('77 620 KC), rather a clunking noise when I'm lugging up a steep hill. Under light load driving conditions everything is fine. I have crawled underneath, but couldn't detect any slack, but I didn't do as thorough an inspection as Datsunmike describes.

Dan

#17 mklotz70

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Posted 20 November 2009 - 05:15 PM

If you get the greasable kind, there's a specific way to put them in. The load has to rotate and basically, compress toward the fitting.
Don't have to be too bright to be me!! :D
Sadly, I prove this nearly everyday!!! :(
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#18 jrock4224

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Posted 11 February 2013 - 12:40 PM

Thanks d mike

It's very rare to find a ...
1/Datsun nut. ( they actually know and appreciate the work and expense that went into the build) and who also...
2/Can afford to buy it.


#19 Sealik

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 04:12 PM

I have to replace a couple of U-joints on the 510

Which reminds me....need another vice, the last one snapped...

Cheap China crap...lol

 

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#20 Mike210

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Posted 08 February 2015 - 08:51 AM

I'm not sure if you'll see this since it's an older thread, but I'll post it separately if no one see's it.

 

So I'm replacing the U-joints on my 1978 B210 GX 5 speed.  They were well past the squeak stage and had moved into the vibration stage.

 

I'm having difficulty getting the right replacement U-joint.  Oreilly's is usually my go-to for most stuff.  The only 1978 Datsun they have in the book was a 110.  I believe the part number for the U-joint was 393 or maybe 392.

Anyway, we ordered it and it is just a little too big.

The ends of the U-joint are the right size for the yokes, but they don't come in far enough to get the retaining rings on because the center of the U-joint is beefier than the original.

 

My question is 2-part:

 

Does any one know the correct U-joint to get for a 1978 B210 GX 5-speed front and rear on the driveshaft?

or....

Since the bigger U-Joint fits, but can't be secured by the retaining clips, what if I just spot well a little on the outside of the yoke to keep it from coming out?

I'll have to take really good care of it since I'll never be able to replace it again.  (at least not very easily)

 

Thanks for any info!