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Discussion Starter #1
All,

Just general public service announcement

If you go to replace your manual trans DRIVERS side axles there is a VERY high chance the axle you bought is wrong! [80?]

Preface: For the Lemons wagon, I went to replace a drivers side axle last year with a new one and found the new one didn't fit, physically got stuck in the trans, had to drive it out from the passenger side.... shame on me for not checking fit without the clip, assumed they gave me an auto axle or something (stupid me). Go back to store, "yeah we've had a couple people complain about Focus axles not fitting" (why did you sell me it then? but ok). I assumed they gave me an auto axle or something, went on my way, got one through one of my teammates from a different place, fit perfect, went right in.

Next issue arose a month ago at a race. Replacement axle grenades due to axle length issues (self induced, due to extended control arms), so we try getting another..... TWO MORE autoparts stores sold us axles that didn't fit. Finally got one that worked, raced, blew up, stupid control arms.

Today, my teammate who sourced the original good axle got me another from the exact same place he got the last one so I can make a spare franken-axle.... and you guessed it, it doesn't fit.... same "that's the right part number", etc

SO this is what I know: (hopefully some of you may confirm they just keep selling us auto axles, but I've never seen what the actual different is, I'm just speculating)

Each axle that didn't fit had a smooth round outer CV bucket and according to each store was correct for a manual (double checking PN's etc).

The ones that do fit have had a CV bucket with three big indents around the outside like the OEM axles instead of being smooth (again this is the INNER CV bucket). Measuring the trans end of the axles, the only difference I can find is that the splines are spaced ever so slightly differently between the two.

SO: Are these automatic axles they keep selling us and they are just mistaken or are their a rash of poorly made manual inner CV buckets going around, axles in wrong boxes, etc? Anyone with an automatic able to chime in?

Stores we have gotten them from:

Advance (one has been right, one has been wrong SAME Pn's on the box

Carquest (I think the one or both from advance were carquest axles, so may be a duplicate data point, but the one up the road from me has a "manual" axle that doesn't fit.

Napa (one napa claimed to only have auto axles, the other said yep we got one! Was visually wrong, didnt take it, but I'm guessing same situation

Autoparts international Branded: This is my teammates shop supplier, original fit, this new one didn't fit

There was another local place that I honestly can't remember around Thompson, CT that had another axle that didn't work I think as well, will ask the other teamates if they can remember who (may have been autozone).

Getting to the point I may just see what Ford charges for a reman, but hoping it wont come to that....


[8] You've been waaaaarrrrrnnnnneeeedddd (in spooky voice)
 

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I can not add any helpful info, but your post is very good info. Hope it will help others in the future.[thumb]
 

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Captain TMI
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I can.... look around, there is one place in Memphis that rebuilds axles locally. You can take one of their rebuilt axles which are complete and laying around the shop (literally, it's like a large shed with a couple of lifts completely littered with axles), or you can wait a few days for yours to be rebuilt.

I know it's not much of a suggestion when a good fitting axle has already been turned in as a core, but it's worth noting that those places might exist in other areas.

FYI: you might want to research heat stressing your welded franken-axle. I don't know if anyone has a machine facility for such a procedure, but if I were making a custom forged part like you are, I'd want it. Welding bonds to parts together with tungsten or whatever metal is in the rods you choose to use, heat stressing homogenizes the weld by heating the part up to very high temps over a long period of time- like 24 hrs. It makes the weld stronger, although for your application it might be an excessive expense.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Hey Whynot,

Good to know! I've been meaning to look around for a rebuilder locally.

As for my Frankenaxle it's actually just made from taking the CV's off a drivers side axles and putting them on a passenger side axle, the passenger side is an inch longer for some reason :D Seemed to be my lucky day when I found that!

I had actually considering doing a welded up axle to test, but dont need to yet. I work as an engineer for a production machine shop and we heat treat stuff all the time, so my primary concern was what to use as my base extension plug then what rockwell axles normally are treated too :Shrug: If it comes down to it and I go down this route I'll prolly post up my findings when something blows up again :)
 

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Old Phart
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Bummer

A run of parts that don't fit, apparently supplied to a number of different suppliers in one manner or another, is a major PITA until solved.
 

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And I've been wondering how often wrong parts get used at rebuild time. I used to see it occasionally when I was in parts, the wrong shaft used or the wrong end. Hard to tell as they vary the parts so much anyway and most of that being acceptable. I learned to dig up the calipers when checking them.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
So a quick update on this, not that I'm surprised, but its actually becoming an issue for us now. Teammate just went through 6 more axle from his regular wholesale supplier and all were wrong.... again we got a good axle from them last year and they are at a loss, very apologetic and looking into it. Passenger sides from them were fine... so really just appears to be a drivers side problem. This became an issue because I wanted to make another longer axle for the drivers side, but I now can't get the same size splines as the original. Again I think the next route is remanned OEM, but haven't gotten that far yet.
 
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