A different way to vent yer diff.....

bugsnbikes

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yeah the balloons makes the MOST sense. Completely sealed and free from contamination-clogging problems.

EVEN the air filters have the potential for the tiny inlets being clogged......too small if covered with a slug of mud/grease/dirt......

I will likely go the balloon route or cutting the end off an air filter to expose the surface area of the filter for greater inlet/outlet and less chance to be clogged.
 

bugsnbikes

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X2, I use air cooled VW fuel filters, their small, cheap and easily available.

The weakest link is always your smallest orifice for clogging.......which on those VW filters is the ends.....very tiny-so much so that one little dollop of mud/grease dirt will clog it and prevent breathing. In an ideal world- i would cut off the end exposing the 1" opening to the air filter and periodically check when the filter is overly gummed up.........much better to have the entire surface area of the filter as your clog surface vs. the tiny little inlet of those filters or any 1/4" inlet.

With the balloon idea- the only failure would be the balloon rupturing and sucking itself down the hose-thus causing a clog in the hose (probably unlikely if you use a beefy balloon.)

Probably the best solution would be to use a fairly large surface filter- like that on one of the Xtreme Air compressors(below) which is effectively a 2"x2"cylinder of foam and has 64x the surface area vs a tiny 1/4" tube inlet of any hose/filter etc.
View attachment 342484
 
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bugsnbikes

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The problem with that is you would have to plumb both the hub and the axles separately.

In a temporary fording system---you still would be blowing the pressure by the seals if its only hooked to the axle. If its only hooked to the hubs---you would run the risk of blowing the axle seals the opposite directions.

This would work if you could individually plumb both axle and hub for its own pressure.....and couple that with some sort of blow off valve which blew prior to blowing the seals.

As a temporary fording system--its doable but pretty complicated since we really dont know what kind of pressure it takes to blow an axle seal. It would take a bunch of trial and error with various pressure blow off valves to nail it down.......it can be done-but probably would take lots of blowing axle seals to nail it down.

Then the system isnt really completely foolproof if the compressor or lines develop some sort of leak-or failure-thereby blowing the axle seals anyway.

Thus far- the most foolproof system seems to be fully contained PASSIVE environment of a heavy duty balloon that can expand and contract without sucking itself into a clog situation or breaking....

this really doesnt fix the hub side of waterproofing.

personally- after toasting my entire front diff bearings from one tiny clog.........id much rather seal the axle and worry about topping off the hubs with grease before fording.

In an ideal world---a zerkable birf plus a balloooned axle would be the best solution.........fully sealed axle---and hubs/birf area that could be zerked/greased to pump out any water immediately after a fording---that way the axle is its own fully sealed environment--passively protected vs. relying on electrics and plumbing. Zerked birfs would allow you to top off before fording--and pretty much prevent water entrance. Still would need some sort of grease blowoff/blowout valve for highway speeds when the birf pressure increases and wants to force all that extra grease you put in pre fording-out (or thru your axle seals into the axle).
 
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Tools R Us

 
 
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The weakest link is always your smallest orifice for clogging.......which on those VW filters is the ends.....very tiny-so much so that one little dollop of mud/grease dirt will clog it and prevent breathing. ...
True, but if mud gets to them I would have bigger issues, they are inside the rig.:hillbilly:
 
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In an ideal world---a zerkable birf plus a balloooned axle would be the best solution.........fully sealed axle---and hubs/birf area that could be zerked/greased to pump out any water immediately after a fording---that way the axle is its own fully sealed environment--passively protected vs. relying on electrics and plumbing. Zerked birfs would allow you to top off before fording--and pretty much prevent water entrance. Still would need some sort of grease blowoff/blowout valve for highway speeds when the birf pressure increases and wants to force all that extra grease you put in pre fording-out (or thru your axle seals into the axle).
Go to the "too much clam beach" thread. Look at what can happen when a hub rapidly cools and sucks in water.

https://forum.ih8mud.com/80-series-tech/293430-too-much-clam-beach-again.html

A greasable birfield wont help your wheel bearings. I have used bearing buddys on many boat trailers. I have hauled boats up the highway on their trailers with the little tiny tires spinning many more rpms than the trucks. The bearing buddies hold spring pressure on grease. Not a ton of pressure either. When the axle gets submerged the rapid cooling of the hot hub does not cause water to get sucked in due to the pressure.

Check this product out.. 5-10 psi is what they recomend.

Air Tight Bearings

You dont need much psi. Just enough to be above the pressure of the water trying to get in. Also when the truck axle cools there will not be a vaccum formed by the rapid cooling as the pressure regulator will let air pass as the pressure drops. There are a number of adjustable regulators I can get that will hold the pressure where I want it. If an axle or a hub got hot and the pressure went above the setting of the regulator the regulator would vent until it was where it was set again. Unlike the open knucle crowd we can pressurize our hubs and wheel bearings. Just thread the air line into the holes for the knuckle plugs. The 5-10 psi to the distrubutor works great too. I had to winch out a wrangler that had raised breathers everwhere but the dizzzy and a snorkel intake. I am convenced this is the best way.. Its just not the easiest.

The stock "breathers" are one way valves, in theory they allow air out, but not in. At first glance this looks good, in real life, not so much. As the gear box warms, the air in it expands, the excess goes out the breather, when it cools the breather closes and if the housing was totally sealed there would be a vacuum. In real life no gear boxes are totally sealed and air is drawn in through the seals, etc.

Seals are designed to work one way, in most cases to keep oil in the box. Outside pressure can easily drive air, water, etc past them. With the stock setup, water is most often pulled in by vacuum. The rig has been driven, the box is at temp and submerged, this rapidly cools the box and air in it, it contracts, causing a vacuum that pulls the water in through the seals, etc.

By going to a free flow system some of this shortcoming is eliminated, but the fact is that most any stock automotive gear box is going to get some water in it when submerged. Most of the time, with short submerging, it's in small amounts that will be evaporated out with normal heat/cool breathing. But say that your crossing and the motor floods, or you get stuck, etc, now the box is setting submerged until the issue can be corrected.

How many have you wheeled with that climb under the rig and remove the fill plugs to check for contamination after each water crossing or even at the end of the day? Why would you, I have a breather system, have crossed deeper water before, etc, the point is that most times you don't know that a box is flooded. So it's a highway trip home, then you notice the fluid on the ground or check the fluid level and find the box full of mayonnaise.

The most effective way of "sealing" gear boxes is pressurizing them with air during a crossing, for most it's not worth the hassle. If you have seen one working, it's a good way show how much they leak, bubbles everywhere.:hillbilly:
https://forum.ih8mud.com/80-series-tech/223544-diff-breather-manifold.html#post3356083

:cheers:
 
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bugsnbikes

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neat little items- my only question would be if the knuckle can actually hold 5-10psi and for how long?

Granted a new one should probably have a real nice seal- being new and all.....but theoretically- im curious what kind of longevity can we expect the knuckle to hold pressure without leaking and constantly tripping your regulator.?
 
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I got this reply in the lcool forum when asking about airlockers helping to keep water out:

THRASHLUX WROTE
>I have actually intoduced a very slight leak into the housing from the air locker line ,on purpose
now there is positive air flow out the breather this has stopped any chance of water going in the pinion seal

on the front diff i have fitted airlines into the swivel hubs and i have a dedicated air presure regulator set at 4 psi now when i go in deep water air can be seen escaping from the freewheeling hubs
since doing this mod no more wheel bearing failures(was a 6 monthly affair for me before)

jonathan
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Here is a picture of the same breather end from George's write found at:

Small Business: Web Hosting, Domains, Ecommerce & Email

Does anyone know what part this tube vents ? ($64k question).
View attachment 170836


MEGA thread resurrection, but just to add (subtract?) clarity, I wanted to comment on the Actuator Breather as well.

I got the ARB Differential Breather kit and did the rear axle today, using the stock breather and running it up behind the subwoofer, though the sunroof drain grommet. I followed the actuator breather from the actuator and mine terminated above the Driver's Side tire. I had to squeeze and force the loom out of its position to locate the end, which is a tiny rubber cap with razor thin cuts in it. I fished it backwards out of most of the harness, almost back to the actuator itself. I fished it over the frame and up through the same grommet, and was able to terminate it at the subwoofer. I may extend it further but I think it's probably good where it is.

Mine is a 1996 Toyota (as in not a Lexus). It did not terminate in the driver's side rear quarter panel
 
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