On Trail Birf Replacement tip

Discussion in '80-Series Tech' started by Riad, Jul 25, 2005.

  1. Riad

    Riad

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    Well, not sure if this has been discussed before, my bad if it is a repost. So, what is your tip of the day for an "On Trail Birf Replacement". Ofcourse it depends on individual situation: how the truck is positioned and all that. Aside from having a spare (set) of birf(s) and tools, what is the hardest thing you have encounterd while replacing birf on trail?

    Thanks for your input :D
     
  2. flintknapper

    flintknapper

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    After having mine apart this past weekend and looking at them, I don't see how you guys are breaking them. Maybe if they're really worn I could see it. Anyone breaking them with tires under 35" and "reasonable" wheeling? Yeah, I know define reasonable. IMO if you're constantly breaking something...either you need to upgrade the part or back off a little.

    I know this doesn't answer your question...but I've seen it mentioned here numerous times (the need to take spares) on certain trails.

    Aside from being able to secure your vehicle (jacked up and supported) then it shouldn't be any different than normal to change out. I suppose you could have a knuckle right up against something, or be knee deep in water or mud. Maybe the best thing to do would be to flip it on its top (hehe).
     
  3. elmariachi

    elmariachi

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    I have never broken one either, though I don't have a rough wheeling style. You get in a jam or get the axle hopping and thrashing and you'll pop one quick. Changing them on the trail is no big deal, its just messy considering you won't have a nice parts cleaner and workbench around.
     
  4. flintknapper

    flintknapper

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    Just an idea....

    Something to help cut down on some of the mess:

    You could have the spare birf. prepacked and the joint wrapped tightly in "Saran Wrap" so the grease would stay in place and uncontaminated until you needed it.

    Also, you could take a balloon (don't laugh) and using a grease gun fill it with about 1-1/2 lbs. of moly grease and tie off the top ready to use. After you scooped out the old grease and any metal parts that "grenaded" you could just place the entire balloon in the birf. cavity, unwrap the axle and shove it in place. Button her up and be good to go until you got home for a proper repair. The balloon will get chewed up (releasing the grease) and won't hurt anything.

    OMG......thats either a really good idea, or incredibly stooooooopid!

    Who wants to try it?


    PS...don't leave a mess on the trail.
     
  5. e9999

    e9999 You want to do what...? Moderator

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    interesting idea. To make is more fun you could fill a rubber glove with grease. (Note the connection with my recent PCV mishap.)
    The benefit of this is not only is it cute, but you could play all sorts of practical jokes with it back in camp! :)


    oh, and for info on trail replacement of Birf, ask a 40 guy, I hear they do that everytime they go out... :D
     
  6. chet

    chet

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    I know its not an 80 but in my mini truck I packed a coffee can with a tub of grease in it and a few rags. I also packed a spare birf with inner axle already on it and wrapped it in plastic shopping bags and duct tape.

    Pulled the tire etc and then put the coffee can under the axle end to catch the GOOP that comes out. gear oil and grease makes a nice grey milkshake that sticks to everything! When done cleaning up put the lid on the can and empty at home! I had it down to under 1/2 hour before I got longfields!
     
  7. Clutchee

    Clutchee I'm fun sized! SILVER Star

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    Another idea on packing a trail birf is to use the plastic case 3M elec tape comes in. It will fit around the bell of a birf packed with grease. Just use duct tape around it & viola...pack birf.

    As far as spare I admit I carry one in my 60 but not in the wifes 80....maybe should but I hope shes not wheeling that hard yet?
     
  8. Riad

    Riad

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    Awesome Ideas!! Man, I love the baloon idea!! I think I'm gonna do that. Gotta secure the baloon full of moly some how though. I am thinking put it in some sort of can or some thing. I am leaning more towards getting a complete birf with inner axle already assembled. I don't expect to break one but you never know. Gotta go prepared. I appreciate all your inputs. Thanks a lot!!

    Edit: Good point by medtro!!! :doh: Which inner axle to use.
     
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2005
  9. Shipwreck

    Shipwreck SILVER Star

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    I keep a birfield field repair kit in my FJ40. I'm starting to put one together for the 80 now too. The basic idea is to put all the knuckle seals, circlips and gaskets together along with a spare birf and any special tools needed to replace a birfield together in one compact package and make it easily accessible on the trail. Replacing a birfield can be a long process that holds up a group for a couple hours if you don't have the experience, tools or parts to get it done quickly. It really slows things down if you have to unpack half the truck to get to your replacement parts or hunt down tools from someone else on the trail.
    On the other hand, it can be done in under 30 minutes if you are prepared.

    Some advice I've learned about storing a prepacked Birfield:
    The "saran wrap", baloon or latex glove idea of covering the bell is sound in principle, but the material is wrong. When stored over time, the grease will eventually degrade each of these coverings and they'll split open. The best thing I've used is a nitrile glove. Nitrile gloves are flexible like latex, but are resistant to solvents. Tie the fingers together and then fold the glove over the packed bell. Seal it around the stub shaft with some tape.

    One of the hardest things about replacing the birfield is removing the old birf from the axle shaft and then seating the new birf over the circlip and onto the shaft. I pack an old spindle in my kit to separate the birf from the shaft. It works just like the "pipe trick" but is more compact. Cardinal Fang made a simple circlip compressor which helps to get the birfield over the circlip.
    http://www.wejacks.com/clipcompressor/birfieldclip.htm
    Without this, it usually takes four pairs of hands, three tiny screwdrivers and lots of cursing to get the birfield onto the shaft.
     
  10. medtro

    medtro

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    How do you know which inner axle to use? Short side?
     
  11. TX_TLC

    TX_TLC

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    Sounds like it would work. Back in college we were wheeling by buddies IH Scout and the rear end let go...trashed the gears. He had spares and a gallon zip lock bag of gear oil. I was like, "How are you going to get the oil into the diff....we bolted the cover back on oil in bag...there was nothing left of that baggie by the time we got home and drained it.
     
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