Birf retaining ring and end play question!!

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Jan 31, 2009
Okay, was planning to pull an all-nighter and get my birfields split and swapped on axle shafts. I separated them fine with PVC pipe, but, the retaining rings were not I was expecting. The local Toy dealer gave me retaining rings that look just like the retaining ring for the birf where it comes through the spindle. These are round stock retaining rings, not flat. I reckon the parts guy gave me the wrong ones? I did not know, should have checked more thoroughly, I know. The rings that came out with the axle shafts both look okay, neither have any cuts or deformation and still match perfectly to each other. Do they come out that way, occasionally? Can I reuse them if they are not damaged? I thought most of the time they are destroyed during the separating procedure. I know I can do more research here, but, I am tired and greasy, and I want to go to bed. If anybody is still up out West, please give me some good news.
Also, before I separated the birfs, I noticed there is end play in the joint, about 1/8, is this normal? I know there should be a little play, but, do not know what is right.
Thanks, and Happy Fourth! Do we live in a great country, or what?!
The dealer gave you the wrong type clip, the round/bar stock clips are correct for the birf to axle shaft. From reading front axle service threads I've seen that many Mud members have reused the clip although the purist would probably say replace it. Sometimes they do break or get a nick in them. By play, do you mean you can push/pull the end of the Birfield in and out a bit when it's sitting in place? That's normal. In fact the hole in the stub shaft of the birf is threaded; you can use a bolt screwed part way into that hole so that you can pull the birf out a bit if needed when you are putting the locking ring back on.
end play

If I put the stub shaft in a vise(padded of course) and put the bare stub shaft back in till it's snug, I can move the spider along the axis of the stub, about .03"/.75mm. Is this amount of play normal?
Don't know how I came up with 1/8 of play, was going on hour 18-19 or so, a little loopy, I guess.
I don't recall any play in the star axially once the axle shaft was locked into the star of the birf, however the cage did have some play front to back, more so on the worn DS birf compared to the less worn PS. I evened this out by swapping around the cages and stars from side to side until both birfs had about the same amount of play (the DS tightened up significantly, the PS loosened up a bit), then I put the DS birf into the PS and vice versa. HTH.

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