Canadians gone bad-on birflieds

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Sep 21, 2003
So I go over to a friends tonight to rebuild the front diff and find out the inner splines on the side gears are really bad and have to be replaced. If the night had ended there i might have been alright. As many of you might guess I AM CHEAP. I am proud to say it. I shopped around for new birfield and found Parts plus could get brand new(not rebuilds) birfs with inner axles for about $100 each out of CANADA, only catch was they only make the drivers side(?). So I order two driver side birfs from them and a inner axle for the passenger side from Toyota. No big deal, just pop out the one drivers inner axle and replace with new passenger side one. Well the new inner axle from Toyota doesn't fit into the new birf from CANADA. We think maybe Toyota sent me the wrong inner axle or something. So I go home and pop out the origional inner axle from the worn birf. Identical axle to the new one from Toyota. The CANADIANs have screwed me. They downsized the inner axle at the point it enters the birfield and then shrank the hole the axle goes into on the birfield. Besides the occasional movie that is only funny after long hours with out sleep has anything good come out of Canada as of late. Needless to say I must now take my birfs up to CV Unlimited to be rebuilt and spend twice as much plus I have to order a new inner axle for the drivers side plus the side gears and cross shaft. Needless to say, not too happy right now. Thats all I have to say about that..

p.s. I don't really have a grudge agianst all canadians just the guys making my birfs.

Trent Taylor
First let me say I’m also cheap and proud of it, and may have done the same thing as you. But as you know it’s sometimes better to heed the old adage “you get what you pay for”, or is it “you get what you pay twice for”. :slap:
Yeah , you're the guy with the unmitigated gall to go cheap on a Land Cruiser , but it's 'our' fault ... :flipoff2: :flipoff2:

Regardless of where you shop , go quality dude ..... even I understand that.
Ok, go cheap on your parts but splurge with our bandwidth :flipoff2:. Those parts obviously fit something else out there and weren't intended to fit a LC. Hey I got a bunch of used leading arm mounting bolts, half price, want em!
I learned two trucks ago that cheap doesn't cut it.

You research cheap, then you research "right"...if they match you are golden.

If they don't, you suck it up and whip out the dough.
Us Canucks have a saying. "There is never enough money to do it right the first time, but always enough to do it twice." :p :p :p :p :p :p :p :p :p.
I thought it was "Don't touch my touque and pass the molsen!" :flipoff2:
There aren't that many options out there for birfields. A few shops that make thier "stronger" birf at a premium price. Toyota $600 per side w/o inner axles. Cv unlimited will rebuild your old ones for about $160 each plus Toyota for inner axles at about $100 per side. These were touted as Brand new included the inner axles and had a two week delivery time. Down side was two weeeks. It ended up taking them 4 weeks. In all the years I have owned my fj40 I have learned the lesson that rebuilt parts tend to suck! They last 1/4 as long and seem to break at the most inoportune moments. New seems to work longer and better. Yes I'm cheap, but this looked like the best of both worlds. Mirage.
Dan, Thats not a saying, thats the National Anthem! :D And thats toque, not touque btw. :D :D
We have some samples from Australia. We still need to test them. They are made to the same specs as the oem ones. Should retails for around $350.

You can rebuild them as well, however I would not use those in anything other than a street truck. The cage they use is not as strong and we have broken those as well. CV Unlimited is working on ones made from 4130. They should be strong, but we have not seen them yet.
Damn CANADIANS :rolleyes:
I hope you don't mind but I'm going to remember "CANADA birf" as a search term and point people back to this thread. There are times when people need a new birf and whine about the cost of a new OEM and decide to go aftermarket... lotsa parts, not just birfs. I think this will help people understand when we (well, me usually) point people back to OEM instead of cheaper alternatives.

Your story was kinda depressing for me because I've done the same thing before; thinking, hoping, praying that I was saving big $$$. The outcome was almost always bad.

I know it was painful but thanks for sharing. :cheers:

I talked to the technical support for Mevotech who made the Birfields. They list the both sides and the guy oculdn't understand why they didn't make both. He swore up and down that they were made to oem specs and it was not possible that they changed the dimensions or the spline count(thiers had 28 going into the birfields). After all his explanations he wanted me to send him my origional birfs and inner axles so they could have a correct set to base thiers on. Shady or what.

I risk beating a dead horse here but I will any way.

You get what you pay for.

I would like to add a footnote:

Cut corners CUT.

Think about it....

Trent, if you asked for a 93 landc ruiser you may have bought a birf for a 93 70 series troopie. They were imported in Canada for mining use whereas the 80 series was never sold in Canada except as an Lx450 in 97. Ask them if they have one to fit an LX450.

Also despite all the nay saying here, it does not sound like such a bad deal to provide a sample to an aftermarket manufacturer provided he is willing to give you a replacement set for free. I don't doubt OEM are better, but they are six times the price, so you would be doing us all a service if someone could find a reliable one.

I ordered a Canuck aftermarket birf for my 93 when mine grenaded. They confirmed it was for an 80 and it was a perfect fit except no provision for ABS.
>> ... except no provision for ABS. <<

Again, just a minor detail. "We'll sell you a cheap birf if you don't mind not having front brakes."


OK C-Dan and B-Wulf I actually disagree with you (stop the presses). Aftermarket is not always a bad product as anyone driving an OME suspension knows. Also, Toyota OEM is not always worth the price. Consider whether you would buy an OEM birfield for a mini-truck or go to an aftermarket like longfield -- the choice is a long way from automatic.

I'll agree with B-wulf that the supplier's abs mistake was annoying and kept my truck in the shop for an extra 3 days while I went to plan B, but my point is that this happened because there is currently no inexpensive aftermarket north american source for 80 birfields (with abs). It would be a good thing if there was, so I encourage the idea of one of us helping an aftermarket source make one. Personally I'm not prepared to take my truck off the road while they borrow my birfield to make a mold, but if someone already is off the road and can get a free part or two out of it, why not?

Competition is healthy and having aftermarket birfs available would make it possible for smurfields, longfields etc to sell inexpensive off the shelf 80's replacement birfs for less. Right now your only option as an 80 owner is to ship yours to them and wait, or to go with a newfield or OEM. Newfields aren't reliable enough yet, and when they are, at $350 plus, they will likely still be pricier than a normal aftermarket birf that has been longfielded or smurfelded. They will price against Toyota OEM because they have no other competition.

As one example, I currently have one rebuilt OEM birf on my truck after it grenaded. If I could buy an aftermarket birf for $125 (which was the price of the one with no abs) then I would do that and send it to Smurfields, and end up with a birf at far less than half the cost of OEM (I would then keep the rebuilt one as a spare). The aftermarket/smurfield birf might be better suited to offroad wear than highway but I doubt it would only be half as good as OEM.

there, I've vented.
We don't really disagree... not really. I have *lots* of aftermarket parts on my truck including front rotors and brake pads (gasp!!!)

Tell me more about these Smurfields. I have 3 spare used ABS birfields (Toyota). Should I send 2 off to get Smurf'd? What are the pros and cons and price?


Valid position. I will be the first to say and have said in the past that some OEM stuff is way too much money. Of course the fitment and function are perfect but I for one sure as hell wouldn't want, say, a cruise control actuator for over a thousand bucks. :eek: I'd toss a brick on the gas pedal first.

Or use a $40 OEM hand throttle. :D

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