HELP! Steering knuckle grease blowout

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J

jroc

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Last night I heard a rattling coming from the front of my 96 FZJ-80 when I was driving. This mornig when I looked where the truck had been there was a pile of xle grease. I just replaced the seals, bearings, rotors, brake pads, etc 8 months ago. Basically I did a whole knuckle rebuild. So why in such a short period of time would a seal go bad and have such major grease loss? I really had no plans of re-doing seals again for a while. Any thing I should take note of this time?
 
J

jroc

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Boy. a 80 on the pic size blows, you can't see crap. That is axle grease on the tire, on the knuckle, in the wheel well, basically everywhere.
 
IdahoDoug

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Even without a larger pic, I can see where the problem lies. Clearly, you did not use any type of exotic colored synthetic grease - just the generic grey stuff! Big mistake, fella.

Actually, without seeing anything better I would guess that the large sweep seal either was improperly installed, or one or more fasteners backed out. This is the large 3 layer (steel/felt/rubber) seal on the inboard face of the hub. Check to see if something hit the seal and actually damaged or tore it. The rattling you heard would be a major indicator of the steel part and fastener parting company - which allowed a bunch of grease to fall out. Happily, if this is the case it is easily remedied but don't drive it in the rain or at all if possible until you get it buttoned back up.

I'm assuming this is grease, not grease mixed with gear oil, BTW. Also, have you done the front axle vent mod yet? A clogged vent can pressurize the axle a bit, and also the hub.

IdahoDoug
 
Beowulf

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jroc,
Pic sizes can be up to 80,000 (80k), not 80 bytes.

If it is the external seal set that Doug described then there is a quick and dirty way to replace it without tearing the entire knuckle apart. Hopefully it won't need to be replaced; just reinstalled.

-B-
 
J

jroc

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Nope I just used high temp bearing grease. Have not looked to see about the bolts. I will check tomorrow. It does not seem to have any diff fluid mixed in. I replaced the bearing seals in the axle tube also when I did the knuckles. If it's not the bolts then I'm going to be breaking the wheel/knuckle down this weekend. It's parked until then.
 
J

jroc

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Her's another, although a bit bluuuuuuuurrrrrrrrred
 
sleeoffroad

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What was the condition of all the seal surfaces on the inner axle? If you have a groove in them, then even a new inner axle seal won't seal. Also looks like you have oil mixed in there. Difficult to see.

How full did you pack the knuckle when you assembled it? Did you do the metal ring/rubber/felt/cover on the back in the right order? Did you do the rubber with the lip the right way?
 
cruiserdan

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The last pic appears to show gear oil mixed in. Also. the spray pattern on the tire leads me to think that gear oil has entered the knuckle. I believe that you will need to pull that side down to see what let go.
 
Riley

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[quote author=sleeoffroad link=board=2;threadid=5131;start=msg39741#msg39741 date=1063197704]
Did you do the metal ring/rubber/felt/cover on the back in the right order? Did you do the rubber with the lip the right way?
[/quote]

Which is the right way? The felt goes to which side?

I'm only asking because I'll be doing this a couple of weeks and it needs to be done right the first time.
 
Beowulf

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There is also a proper orientation of the rubber wiper. I cannot recall which way the side with the lip is supposed to go. Someone please repost for completeness of this thread.
-B-
 
J

jroc

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[quote author=Rogue link=board=2;threadid=5131;start=msg39835#msg39835 date=1063215882]
That sucks...
[/quote]

It sho do! Bout to go tear into it. I replaced inners, outers, everything 8 months ago. New bearings for the axle, new bearing in the knuckles, seals.....all new. I'm at a loss why it happened. I'm pretty sure a bearing let go and sent some schrapnel (sp?) and it wrecked the seals. I really don't have time to screw with this kind of a problem right now but wish me luck, I'm goin in.
 
J

jroc

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Well, it's diff fluid/grease combo. The inner seal let go and now we have a nice mess. The bearing is making a crunchy noise so I would guess it is gone too. Looks like a dirty fingernail weekend. :mad:
 
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jroc

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[quote author=cruiserdan link=board=2;threadid=5131;start=msg40018#msg40018 date=1063237821]
What bearing is making that offensive sound?
[/quote]

the outer wheel bearing I'm thinking. I would not think that a knuckle bearing would have gone and pieces are in the knucle now. Also it would be very wabblie if it was a KB. Could be I'm hearing the axle grinding on what is left of the inner seal. Don't know, won't know until I go into surgery on Saturday. It's not a good sound, I do know that.
 
cruiserdan

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A wheel bearing could not end up inside the knuckle. If there are pieces of something inside the knuckle, it would have to come from the Birf. Based on that, I woud speculate that the birf let go or perhaps the inner shaft sheared and the inner axle has flopped around resulting in the gear oil escaping into the knuckle. In any case, your billfold is going to need CPR. :eek:
 
landtank

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[quote author=jroc link=board=2;threadid=5131;start=msg39674#msg39674 date=1063169975]
Nope I just used high temp bearing grease.
[/quote]


Did you pack the knuckles with this stuff?
 

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