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Author Topic: Replacing rear axle bearings? Odds of having to replace my axles?  (Read 2309 times)
ryeguy2006a
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« on: May 15, 2012, 09:28:59 AM »

I took my car on a small test drive up and down the road, and it was making some horrible grinding/metal scrapping noise. My dad was with me and he said that is sounded like the axle bearings. We took the car on the lift and when you lifted the wheel when it was on the car, you could feel the play in the bearing. Now I don't have any questions as to whether the bearings are bad, it is whether the axles are bad. I haven't had time to take apart the rear end and verify for sure, but I am just wondering what my chances would be that the axles are still good?

The car had about 116k miles on it according to the odometer when I got it. I didn't do anything to the rear end, just painted it and bolted it on.
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1976 Trans Am LS1, 6 speed, C5 12.8" Brakes, LS1 rear 12" brakes, 17" Aluminum Rims, and much more...SOLD
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LeighP
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« Reply #1 on: May 15, 2012, 09:53:46 AM »

I seem to recall you can buy axle saver bearings...they're a little bit bigger (wider) and the bearing rollers run on the surface next to where the originals run....if the axle is worn.
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Regards,
Leigh

Sydney, Australia
Former Firebirds -
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1977 Pontiac Trans Am
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richduty455
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« Reply #2 on: May 15, 2012, 10:19:45 AM »

sounds like the perfect time to do a rear swap
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js1977
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« Reply #3 on: May 15, 2012, 10:38:47 AM »

I don't know what your budget is, but if there is any wear on the axles you might as well replace them, their not really that expensive, I think I paid 150 for 30 count axles.  Heck while your in there you probably need to check everything.  I know it sucks but you'll save money in the long run and cause less work for yourself.  I had everything replaced in my reared except for the shell it's self and it only cost me $1,040 for parts and labor. Now I have a bullet proof reared with 3.23's and a peace of mind of never worrying about it.

Here's the thread on it... for reference if needed.

http://transamcountry.com/community/index.php?topic=50649.0
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ryeguy2006a
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« Reply #4 on: May 15, 2012, 12:10:27 PM »

Thanks for the link Jimmy, but $1K is definately over my budget. I have been spending so much lately on my car, there is no way I can justify spending that kind of money for a while. It has been nickle and dime-ing me to death. I know that these corporate 8.5 rears are pretty strong as they are. My rear has 3.08 gears, posi carrier, and 28 spline axles. I am just worried that when I go to replace the bearings that they are going to be scarred or something.

This is the first time that I have noticed this sound, and I have taken the car on a few trips up and down the back road. I have been doing some reading and since I have swapped to the C5 front brakes, and got a new master cylinder I may need to have a residual pressure valve for the rear drums if I have a disk/disk Master cylinder. If not I guess the drum brakes will not function as they should. I am wondering now if it is possible that instead of the rear bearings, that the internal pieces of my drum fell apart? I guess I am just going to have to tear into my car on Friday.
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1976 Trans Am LS1, 6 speed, C5 12.8" Brakes, LS1 rear 12" brakes, 17" Aluminum Rims, and much more...SOLD
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js1977
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« Reply #5 on: May 15, 2012, 12:18:22 PM »

Yeah, sounds like you might want to check the brake issue first.  Just FYI, my bearings were bad too and had scarred my axles... 
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What do I know, I'm just some dumb peckerwood that lives in the country with too many guns...
81 Formula
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« Reply #6 on: May 15, 2012, 01:46:36 PM »

You can install a axle saving bearing.  It moves the pressure point to a good point of the axle.   Some say its a temporary fix others say it will go as long as a new axle would.   However since your budget won't support new axles at the moment it will fix your immediate problem unless the axle is really chewed up.
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silver78
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« Reply #7 on: May 15, 2012, 02:01:28 PM »

Just a thought but are any of the S-10 truck axles the same length?
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ryeguy2006a
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« Reply #8 on: May 15, 2012, 02:02:22 PM »

Thanks for all the responses guys. I did a little research and I found out that the MC that I am using is off of a disk/disk car. Which means that I need to have a residual pressure valve installed for my rear brakes to work correctly. So I am thinking what happened is that my drum brakes fell apart inside... That is what happens if they don't have the residual pressure in the lines.

A MC that is designed for disk/drum has the valve build into the MC, so I am hoping that this is my problem and I don't have to worry about bearings at this time. I will keep you guys updated.
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1976 Trans Am LS1, 6 speed, C5 12.8" Brakes, LS1 rear 12" brakes, 17" Aluminum Rims, and much more...SOLD
My Build: http://transamcountry.com/community/index.php?topic=24465.0
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ryeguy2006a
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« Reply #9 on: May 15, 2012, 02:02:58 PM »

Just a thought but are any of the S-10 truck axles the same length?
What years?
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1976 Trans Am LS1, 6 speed, C5 12.8" Brakes, LS1 rear 12" brakes, 17" Aluminum Rims, and much more...SOLD
My Build: http://transamcountry.com/community/index.php?topic=24465.0
My Feedback: http://transamcountry.com/community/index.php?topic=37555.0

LOOKING FOR A 66 CHEVELLE MY NEXT PROJECT!! PM ME IF YOU HAVE INFO
silver78
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« Reply #10 on: May 15, 2012, 02:06:38 PM »

Not sure on the year but I thought the SS option trucks have the 8.5 rear and the others have the 7.5 rear.  I'll do some surfing since it slow at work right now.
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65 Galaxie sold
67 camaro RS sold
68 camaro RS sold
69 camaro sold
81 T/A 4 spd sold
86 IROC sold
88 Formula 350 sold
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93 9C1 Caprice sold
94 Impala SS sold
2000 Super Duty current
2006 Malibu SS wifes
78 TA BREAKEN MY BACK!
tajoe
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« Reply #11 on: May 15, 2012, 05:10:44 PM »

I was under the impression the master cylinders for the disc/drum, and disc/disc were the same. It's the proportioning valve that differs, which is an external component.
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Grand73Am
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« Reply #12 on: May 15, 2012, 07:16:47 PM »

No, the masters are different too.

I'd just get a new disc/drum master cylinder. They don't cost much.
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Steve F.
silver78
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« Reply #13 on: May 15, 2012, 07:31:37 PM »

Here's and idea to check if it's the drums.  Put the rear on jack stands run the car in gear listen for the grinding sound.  Then take the wheels and drums off, put the wheels back on for the same weight and run the car again listening for the sound.  I'm betting the MC is your problem.
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65 Galaxie sold
67 camaro RS sold
68 camaro RS sold
69 camaro sold
81 T/A 4 spd sold
86 IROC sold
88 Formula 350 sold
92 Z-28 sold
93 9C1 Caprice sold
94 Impala SS sold
2000 Super Duty current
2006 Malibu SS wifes
78 TA BREAKEN MY BACK!
ryeguy2006a
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« Reply #14 on: May 17, 2012, 07:14:16 AM »

The reason that I switched to the C3 Master Cylinder is because it has the 1" bore that I am looking for because I am running the C5 corvette brakes up front. The new problem that can potentially exist is my rear drums not functioning properly. The factory disk/drum master cylinders that originally came on our cars have a built in residual valve in the MC in our cars, and because I have a C3 MC that is disk/disk I need to have the residual pressure valve in the rear. That is a simple fix, Wilwood and other companies sell an inline pressure valve that I can put on my car.

Now, I have narrowed the problem down to my axles. I took the wheel off my car last night and everything is completely fine with the rear drums... So that narrows the problem down to the rear axles, bearings or a combination of the two. I will know more on Friday when I tear into the rear. I am really hoping that it will just be the bearings, but I guess worst case I will just use an axle saver bearing to get me through the summer and over the winter I will rebuild the rear with good internals.
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1976 Trans Am LS1, 6 speed, C5 12.8" Brakes, LS1 rear 12" brakes, 17" Aluminum Rims, and much more...SOLD
My Build: http://transamcountry.com/community/index.php?topic=24465.0
My Feedback: http://transamcountry.com/community/index.php?topic=37555.0

LOOKING FOR A 66 CHEVELLE MY NEXT PROJECT!! PM ME IF YOU HAVE INFO
LeighP
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« Reply #15 on: May 17, 2012, 07:26:45 AM »

If you're worried about a residual pressure valve, you can buy them as a stand alone item....just plumb it into the rear line from the combination valve.
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Regards,
Leigh

Sydney, Australia
Former Firebirds -
1971 Pontiac Firebird 455
1977 Pontiac Trans Am
1976 Pontiac Trans Am
1967 Pontiac Firebird 400 convertible
1967 Pontiac Firebird 400 coupe

ryeguy2006a
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« Reply #16 on: May 17, 2012, 07:53:10 AM »

That is exactly what I am going to buy. Thanks Leigh.

http://www.appliedracing.com/brake-components/residual-pressure-valve---10lb-inline.html

These cars are so much fun to work on.... Sometimes.
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1976 Trans Am LS1, 6 speed, C5 12.8" Brakes, LS1 rear 12" brakes, 17" Aluminum Rims, and much more...SOLD
My Build: http://transamcountry.com/community/index.php?topic=24465.0
My Feedback: http://transamcountry.com/community/index.php?topic=37555.0

LOOKING FOR A 66 CHEVELLE MY NEXT PROJECT!! PM ME IF YOU HAVE INFO
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