Replace pinion seal - Chevelle Tech
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 1st, 99, 3:59 PM Thread Starter
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Got the 12 bolt posi all fixed up and installed finally (more on that later Manuel!)

Anyways I discovered the pinion seal is leaking pretty bad.. Is this as simple as dropping the drive shaft, marking the nut in relation to the pinion shaft and removing the nut & shield then replacing the seal? OR am I missing something..


Thanks

Mike Reeh
Gold #34

1970 El Camino
12 bolt POSI
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 1st, 99, 4:10 PM
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yes,i would replace the nut n washer,n torquethe nut to the right specs. hope this helps.67 rat member #199
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 1st, 99, 5:11 PM
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Mike,
I know a lot of people will tell you this can be done but personally I dont see how without replacing the crush sleeve and resetting the pinion bearing preload. The way my luck goes it would cause a problem. Maybe Scooter will chime in and let us know how they do it.

------------------
Bill Koustenis
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Waldorf Md

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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 1st, 99, 6:48 PM
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Problem is, guys, there is no torque spec on this nut. You tighten it until you have 10 in. oz. of preload (drag) on the pinion bearings. To check, you'll need to pull out the carrier. Compared to the torque required to turn a complete axle assembly, 10 in. oz. is, as the say, in the mud. If you fake it, get set for some axle noise or burned up pinion bearings, IMHO.
As a practical matter, marking the nut and using lock-tite worked for me, at least for the moment.

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Fred Aldrich
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[This message has been edited by Fred Aldrich (edited 07-01-99).]
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 1st, 99, 9:59 PM
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I think I scare Billk with the way I do it. I suppose it is the true shade tree method. But, I have done many rear seal replacements (and I was taught by my Uncle who was a factory trained Chev mechanic) and I have never had one complaint or problem. I have done it this way so many times that I have total confidence in this method and I will share it with you.
Remove the nut and washer.
The yoke may or may not come right off. If it does not, use a mallet or light hammer to gently tap it off as you rotate the yoke.
Using a fairly heavy screwdriver, catch the seal under the lip and hit the screwdriver handle with a hammer as you go around the seal in several places until it comes out (be ready for oil to come out when you remove the yoke/seal).
Use a clean rag and good solvent such as lacquor thinner, or gas if nothing else, to clean the area where the seal goes.
I like to use a light coat of gasket sealer around the new seal where it goes into the housing.
Use a block of wood and a fairly heavy hammer to tap the new seal back in. Sometimes it is difficult to get it started all the way around. Just be patient and keep trying.
Wipe off the yoke where it contacts the new seal and then lightly oil the surface.
I re-use the old washer and nut.
I use a 1/2in drive rachet and socket to tighten the nut to the point that it will no longer turn with out a lot of force. It takes a LOT OF TORQUE to compress the crush sleeve and if you use a regular rachet handle you just are not like likely to compress the crush sleeve anymore (unless you compete with Arnold Schwartznegger). If I were going to quote a torque spec, I would say it is about 60-70ft-lb. After you have tightened the nut to about 40-50lbs, then turn the yoke to assure it still turns freely and then finish tightening and checking to see that it turns freely. After I am satisfied that it is adequately tightened, then I use a good center punch and punch the nut into the pinion threads (to keep it from backing off). To hold the yoke while I tighten the nut, I have a tool which attaches to the yoke u-joint bolt holes. You probably don't have this tool. A BIG pipe wrench works just fine. If you feel uncomfortable with this method, then DON'T DO IT THIS WAY. But on a rear end with lots of miles on it I really feel confident you will be just fine.

DO NOT forget to add oil!!!!!!

And I think fred really means in-lbs. I have never seen an in-oz spec.

Billk, don't get too upset with me. I promise, I have had complete success with this method. Like I say, I was taught by a person who did it this way for many years in a Chevy service dept.

Again, DO NOT forget to add oil!!!!!!

------------------
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 2nd, 99, 7:25 AM
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I had a bitch of a time getting my nut off. I had to use a long bar and litterly put my foot into it. One more point. On some rear ends the seal was not hammered until it touched the steel of the rear end. I had about a 1/16" space all the way around the seal. But this is on a Zapper. I would always use a new nut for the cost. Remember the nut isn't your regular round nut. It acts the same way as the rocker arm nut. My .02 worth.

Mark
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 2nd, 99, 10:52 AM
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I have to agree with DZAUTO as this has worked well for me. If you mark the nut and pinion you can come back to the same spot. If you install a new nut you are not able to get back to the same setting.
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 2nd, 99, 2:55 PM
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a long time ago some would be mech put the guts in my 12 bolt. on the way home the nut backed off the yoke.he used the old nut n washer, w.h. a long time drag racer told me it was because he used the old nut n washer.so I replaced them n tightened to specs. since then my 427 has not been able to tear this rear up.it worked for me also on my 62 chevy 1 ton.oh yea. I took the nut to17 foot pounds.just ask chilton
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[This message has been edited by 67RAT (edited 07-02-99).]

[This message has been edited by 67RAT (edited 07-02-99).]

[This message has been edited by 67RAT (edited 07-02-99).]
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 2nd, 99, 11:11 PM
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Just please don't forget to add oil when you finish.

------------------
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 3rd, 99, 11:34 AM
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Well, BillK is correct, I'll chime in with the correct way to do it. DZ has been lucky, and it can be done that way, but it is not the correct way by any means!

When customers come into our shop and ask if we will replace the seal, we tell them it will cost $185. That is the labor charge that we charge to disassemble a rear, clean it, & put it back together with new fluid. Some of them are shocked and reply that "so & so shop" down the street said they'd do it for around $50-75, why are you so high? Then we explain to them the importance of the crush sleeve, and doing the job correctly. We offer them the option of taking it down the street for $50-75, or having us do it right. Some of them go down the street and some of them have us do it right. Those that go down the street have ended up back at our shop with bad pinion bearings shortly after, and then have to pay for that repair.

Here is what we do for $185 labor:
Disassemble, inspect all bearings, clean axle tubes out, install new axle seals, new crush sleeve, new pinion seal, reassemble, fill with new fluid. We usually always use the same nut, but we use red loctite on it. We also do not use an inch-pound torque wrench, ever. We tighten the nut with an impact, and use "feel" to get it correct. With used bearings, we do not tighten as much, but with new bearings, we tighten the nut so there is more drag. We also use red loctite on the retaining bolt for the spider gear pin. We never use a gasket, silicone only.
Someone had posted something about the gasket on an 8.5 ten bolt as having slots in it to allow for axle bearing lube. If you use silicone only, the holes in the axle tube will be open, as the cover has little dimples in it to allow lube to deflect into the holes and down the axle tube, so that point does not matter. Anyway, I recommend silicone in place of a gasket. We never have a problem with leaks.


There are shortcut ways, and there are correct ways to do a lot of things, but for a rearend, the parts can add up pretty fast, so I would always recommend using a new crush sleeve any time the pinion nut is removed, or loosened, for any reason.

Sorry, so long, but had to "chime in"

------------------
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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 3rd, 99, 11:46 AM
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Scooter-Billk, and everyone else,
I totally and completely agree with you. But you are looking at the original wrong side of town, wrong side of the river, did everything for himself poor boy. Yes, without question, I have probably been lucky, and we all know that sometimes luck runs out. But I do take a lot of care when I do shortcuts like that, and really try to assure that I am as precise as possible when I do it. I can't help it, after all these years, I still pinch pennys.

Don't forget to add oil when you finish!
------------------


[This message has been edited by DZAUTO (edited 07-03-99).]
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 3rd, 99, 12:42 PM
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Chilton - Chevrolet Mid-Size - 1964-88
Chevelle,El Camino & Monte Carlo pg.385
#3 "mark the nut, so that proper bearing preload can be maintained upon reassembly"
#11 "Install the nut and tighten 1/16" beyond the alignment mark(s)"
Haynes Chevrolet Chevelle v8&v 1969-87
Chevelle,Malibu,& El Camino pg.261
#4- "scribe or dot punch alignment marks on nut"
#13- "Install nut & washer and, tighten carefully so that the original number of threads are exposed"
#14- "measure rotational torque and tighten nut fractionally until the figure compares with that recorded before disassembly, Additionally 1-5lb-in.of torque should be added to compensate for the drag of a new seal"
This my friends is the condensed version,
showing the differances of opinion that
can exist on a given subject.

------------------
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wanna drive it all night
long"




[This message has been edited by junglejimmie (edited 07-03-99).]
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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 3rd, 99, 2:05 PM
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welp learn something new every day.have to remember this next time I do a rear. 67rat member #199
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 4th, 99, 9:55 AM
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Despite the procedures listed in repair manuals, I would still recommend doing it the "correct way" as I mentioned for the reasons I mentioned. Anyone can feel free to take a chance on ruining bearings and/or gears if they want. In fact, I do enough rearend overhauls now, but I'll always be glad to take in a few more that were messed up by that shop "down the street" that took the shortcut. It means another $800-1000 job for the shop. Then again you may luck out and not have a problem. Some people like to gamble a little, some don't. It's all up to you.

------------------
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old Apr 16th, 11, 11:07 PM
Mark
 
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Re: Replace pinion seal

Well........ I've read all the responses you guys have put together on replacing this troublesome seal. I need an answer. I am in the middle of doing this again on a new 10 bolt 8.2 rebuild I just got back cause I have a leaky seal as they did not machine my yoke. I tend to agree with Scooter however he sounds a lot like my machine shop guy who only knows one way to do things.....the Ideal way. However, we do not live in an ideal world, and sometimes you have to do things the optimal way, depending on how much money or time you want to spend. I feel the way all of you do.......DZ auto, COPO, and Scooter............ by the way I hope COPO gets his nuts off next time.

Anyways............ Ive been told many times that the Retainer Nut Torque is set to 15 inch-lbs resistance to rotate the assembly with the ring gear and axles pulled, to set the crush seal to proper bearing preload. Its just like front wheel spindles without a cotter pin. Its a feel thing with spec guidelines. Now.......... we may not always have the nut scored correctly or recorded to duplicate..........so.....

Did anyone ever think to score a correctly loaded retainer nut and record the amount of tightening torque necessary with the axles and rearend assembled, so we would all have a close crush range to follow, since we always run into this problem??

That way if we have newly placed bearings, or assembly, we can check this with everything together? Can someone check the torque on their NUTS and let me know what that value is with the axles and rearend assembled now??

Also........ a custom shim can be made to insert with reassembly and recrush a small amount back into the seal with retightening/seal replacement. It works. I also agree with DZAuto......... it takes a lot of torque to crush that seal and you need a special tool to hold the yoke while you do that. (Or a 400lb russian woman who eats meet and taters to hold a 10ft pipe on it.) Dont ask me how I know that. It may be 40-70 ft-lbs, but how would we know a closer measurement unless someone checks their nuts now?

Please........ someone get me that torque value. I need it. Thanks......Live Long and Prosper

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