I guess I shouldn't have been putting this off

Discussion in '80-Series Tech' started by sjpitts, Jul 22, 2005.

  1. sjpitts

    sjpitts

    Messages:
    744
    Likes Received:
    8
    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2003
    Location:
    Mesa, Arizona
    I walked out in my garage this morning and noticed grease on the driveway. Grey grease. Its locations was near the location of where the front drivers wheel is when my wifes 80 is in the garage. So I went and looked under the 80, and this is what I found.

    Clearly, I have been neglecting the knuckles. I have owned it for almost three years-- I bought it with 109k miles and it now has almost 130k miles. I don't have any reason to believe that the PO did any knuckle work. I added grease once throuh the placebo (inspection) hole and have recently changed the gear oil, but I have been putting off doing a whole knuckle job.

    The good news is that this is very recent. The bad news is that I need to put a couple hundred miles on this vehicle this weekend, and will not be able to do a full knuckle job for at least a week.

    Will I be ok?

    Jared
     
  2. e9999

    e9999 You want to do what...? Moderator

    Messages:
    16,632
    Likes Received:
    520
    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2003
    Location:
    US
    200 miles only?
    very likely OK, just make sure there is enough oil and grease...
     
  3. flintknapper

    flintknapper

    Messages:
    5,027
    Likes Received:
    1,797
    Joined:
    May 22, 2004
    Location:
    Deep East Texas
    Mine has 120,000 and doesn't look anything like that. It looks like you have an axle seal that has worn and is allowing gear lube to get into the birf. causing the grease in that area to "slurry".

    I would not be surprised if the reverse is true also (grease now getting into the diff.) and mixing with the gear lube.

    If your Birfs. are not "clicking" yet... then you might get away with putting a few more miles on your Cruiser before any damage is done...but the axle is in need of some attention pretty quick IMO.

    Check the fluid level in the diff. and put some more grease in the "placebo hole" if you decide to drive it.
     
  4. semlin

    semlin discouraged user

    Messages:
    5,246
    Media:
    1
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    1,608
    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2003
    Location:
    north of 49
    avoid turning :D

    seriously, slow right down before you turn so you don't put stress on the joints and balls. you will likely be alright but there is no telling when she'll blow. I blew mine out on a sharp turn under load that I tried to take fast.
     
  5. sjpitts

    sjpitts

    Messages:
    744
    Likes Received:
    8
    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2003
    Location:
    Mesa, Arizona
    You guys are making me nervous.

    I should add that the knuckle did not look like this a week ago. I would guess that the inner axle seal let go in the last couple of weeks.

    And another thing I forgot to mention-- I will be towing a small (16.5 foot, 3000lbs) ski boat this weekend. Up and down a windy mountain road

    In fact, I have been towing this boat alot recently. Could this have caused the sudden failure in the axle seal?

    And Semlin, what do you mean by blow? Do you really think the birfield could bust? I could see it busting if it went dry, but it seems like the gear oil and the remaining grease would provide some protection-- at least for a while.

    Jared
     
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2005
  6. semlin

    semlin discouraged user

    Messages:
    5,246
    Media:
    1
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    1,608
    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2003
    Location:
    north of 49
    one of mine broke at 122k shortly after i bought it in the circumstances i described. it was described as "dry" by the mechanic who fixed it (badly). Beforehand, it had some diff oil on the hub and a drip stain on the knuckle housing but a toyota mechanic looking at it a week before it blew told me not to worry about it for a while. It happened too early in my ownership to have thought to do it myself or know what questions to ask so that's all the detail I've got.
     
  7. elmariachi

    elmariachi

    Messages:
    1,977
    Likes Received:
    23
    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2005
    Location:
    Shufflin' Through the Texas Sand
    Some might argue, but I think this is why you don't add grease through the inspection hole. Knuckle grease has nowhere to go but either out the back like yours, or past the seal into the diff lube. Either way, a knuckle that needs grease added should just be repaired the correct way immediately. And if you added too much grease, it could have caused this, IMO.

    I would not operate a truck leaking that bad....my luck the birfield would crater and cost me a lot more than a rebuild. Of course, a lot of guys on here will tolerate leaks, I don't.
     
  8. flintknapper

    flintknapper

    Messages:
    5,027
    Likes Received:
    1,797
    Joined:
    May 22, 2004
    Location:
    Deep East Texas
    Have you done the CDL switch mod. so you could at least limp home?
     
  9. MH_Stevens

    MH_Stevens

    Messages:
    691
    Likes Received:
    20
    Joined:
    May 24, 2005
    Location:
    Bonsall, California
    The grease in the knuckle gets consumed, it slowly diffuses through the felt washer (that's why it is felt and not rubber) to lube the sphere. Grease that is used between major knuckle services must be replaced via the greasing plug.
     
  10. IdahoDoug

    IdahoDoug

    Messages:
    8,864
    Likes Received:
    264
    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2003
    Be sure the front diff stays full. You're going to suddenly go through a lot of gear oil (going out the birf where you see the grey mess) on the trip, so fill it and have a jug/plug wrench/filler with you. Run low while towing and you'll also be replacing the front diff.

    DougM
     
  11. elmariachi

    elmariachi

    Messages:
    1,977
    Likes Received:
    23
    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2005
    Location:
    Shufflin' Through the Texas Sand
    Nope, I disagree. The felt is not a seal and it has no sealing properties. The felt is a wiper only and is designed to keep dust off of the ball. Behind the felt is a companion rubber ring that IS the seal and it is designed to keep the moly in. There should be no loss of grease between major knuckle services unless the inner axle seal begins to leak, in which case it's time for service. Major knuckle services should be determined not by the presence of a leak at the back of the knuckle through the felt, but the presence of moly in the diff lube, which in my experience in owning 8 Land Cruisers and doing 20 and counting knuckle rebuilds, almost always occurs first.

    To the thread starter sjpitts, get a 10mm wrench and snug up the 6 little bolts buried in the grease on the back of the knuckle. This, coupled with IdahoDoug's advice will get you through the weekend if you are careful.
     
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2005
  12. parabola

    parabola

    Messages:
    316
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2005
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    Can someone post a pic of what they should look like?
     
  13. e9999

    e9999 You want to do what...? Moderator

    Messages:
    16,632
    Likes Received:
    520
    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2003
    Location:
    US
    clean with a very thin layer of grease on the knuckle, maybe a bit of accumulation at the "edge" of the swept area, but without the dripping mess at the bottom...
     
  14. elmariachi

    elmariachi

    Messages:
    1,977
    Likes Received:
    23
    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2005
    Location:
    Shufflin' Through the Texas Sand

    Sure, here's mine with 16,000 miles on them. What appears to be grease on the outer lower studs and nuts is water, its damp and has been raining here. Note the rust colored circumference around the knuckle housing behind the felt retainers...NO grease anywhere.
    knuckle.jpg
     
  15. Silicon 70

    Silicon 70

    Messages:
    814
    Likes Received:
    4
    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2005
    Location:
    Hollister, CA
    Cancel your trip and do the knuckle job or rent an SUV to tow your stuff. Isn't the purpose of the trip to make it back home in one peice?

    My 2 cents...........
     
  16. parabola

    parabola

    Messages:
    316
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2005
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    Looks like I may need some knuckle service???

    First two are drivers side, second two are passenger side.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Advice?
     
  17. e9999

    e9999 You want to do what...? Moderator

    Messages:
    16,632
    Likes Received:
    520
    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2003
    Location:
    US
    advice?
    make sure the 4 nuts at the bottom are tight! :)
     
  18. parabola

    parabola

    Messages:
    316
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2005
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    That's it?! It looked to me that the DS was rather wet. Is everything looking OK?
     
  19. Kalawang

    Kalawang

    Messages:
    1,099
    Likes Received:
    3
    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2005
    Location:
    Philippines
    That's happened to me. Best thing to do is replace the axle seal and probably the oil seal as well. The job takes a little more than 3 hours per wheel if you know what you're doing and are complete with tools, including a brass drift.

    I'm of the opinion that even a 30 mile trip will cause further damage.


    Kalawang
     
  20. e9999

    e9999 You want to do what...? Moderator

    Messages:
    16,632
    Likes Received:
    520
    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2003
    Location:
    US

    no,no, that's not it. Just another thing to check in the same location. Much worse potentially, but little to do with your leak. Your inner seals are definitely far gone. But still, if there is oil in the diff and grease in your knuckle, I think you should be fine to drive for a bit.
     
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.