first timer front axle rebuild in progress, two questions...

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Jul 7, 2010
First question:
I am following Romer's axle/birf rebuild thread from the FAQ, and have successfully disassembled the PS, have nearly all the DS disassembled, but can NOT get the pitman arm to release from the bottom of the steering knuckle.. the cone washers are still in there tight.

The four 17mm bolts are un-done, and I've tried tapping the bolt heads (with the nuts threaded on flush), I've tried some leverage between the knuckle and arm, and slight to fairly heavy tapping and glancing blows all around the pitman arm/knuckle meeting points with a 3lb hammer, and I've tried persuading the cone washers out with a small screwdriver and some light taps via hammer.. no joy.

I haven't tried heat yet (all I own is one of those small propane/butane burner torches) but may start with that tomorrow morning...

any tips or tricks on this step?

Question 2: on my PS, it's clear that the oil seal between axle shaft/birf housing had failed, as my grease came out pretty soupy. I've owned the truck about 50k but have only seen leaking out of the back of the birf on the felt seal in the last month or so, so I'm not sure if that's related to the oil seal failure or not.

I removed the oil seal and discovered that the "seat" for the seal has some prior damage (a couple of small grooves/gouges from someone gouging out the seal in the past). Is this a problem, and if so, any way (other than some emory sanding) to deal with it?

thanks in advance :beer:
Q1: 5 lb. hammer. :hillbilly: It took some sustained hard hits to loosen them up.
1. I use a mild steel rod and a BFH on the cone washers. Don't bang on the studs directly, but on the area around them.

2. Just smooth up the seat for the seal. As long as they aren't all the way across it will be fine. If you're worried you could use a little RTV to seal it up.
X2 on the 5lb maul. Wack it like ya wanna crack it.

Seriously, it'll take the punishment. :grinpimp:
If you have a brass hammer you can swing that as hard as you want directly on the studs.
I also had problems here.

I used a propane soldering torch to heat them quite a bit then they started poping out.

But the consensus is hit the the studs with a hammer and they eventually will pop out, but I have little luck, so I took out my little bottle of gas and the torch attachement. :hillbilly:

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