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How to: Axle Tube Sleeve Fix Axle vacuum disco elimination, axle tube sleeve fix, ubolt eliminator

#1 User is offline   Joe Dillard 

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Posted 18 June 2009 - 08:51 PM

Last year while wheelin’ in Colorado with some friends, I developed a serious crack underneath my passenger side SOA perch. The problem didn’t surface till the next day while I was in Moab doing a relatively easy trail. All the sudden my front axle started making some interesting noises, and looked as if I had balljoint issues at first glance. So Randy (Rock_Worm) and I got out to take a look. Next thing I know, Randy say’s something to the effect – hey Joe, I think I’ve found the problem”. :2thumup:

Anyway, we did a trail repair & then towed it back to our campsite in Moab. The following day, friends Randy, Larry and I welded it back up as a temporary fix so that we could continue wheelin’ for the next week. It has held up fine ever since & has several other trail runs on it – but I wanted a more permanent fix. So, this is where my “Disco Elimination & Axle Tube Sleeve Fix and ubolt eliminator” begins.

Here’s what the initial crack looked like:

Face of the axle tube:

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View from underneath:

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View from the back:

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So, back at my campsite, I borrowed a friend of mine’s Lincoln MIG welder and we cleaned up the crack and welded it back as best we could.

Here's my friend Larry, from WA, helping do some of the welding:

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Beginnings of the repair:

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Okay, now that I’ve explained how my troubles started – here’s what I’ve done as a more permanent fix. Yea, it’s a HPD30 and some may say; “why polish it?” This fix cost me a grand total of ~$30.00 for the 3”x.250” DOM, including hardware. I already had everything else laying around my garage.

I had a pair of perches, so I got some 3”x.250” DOM and started doing some measuring.

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I secured the Jeep on jack stands & pulled my tire, then started to remove the Warn hubs:

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Then I removed the Warn spindle & Vanco calipers and rotor:

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Next was to remove the Warn passenger side axle shaft:

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Remove the steering links from my MORE steering bracket:

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Remove & tape up the axle breather & ARB fitting:

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Then the drive shaft and secure it out of the way:

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Next up was to remove the ubolts & spring plates:

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HPD30 removed. You’ll notice I didn’t bother removing the brake rotor, hub spindle etc from the driver side since there was no need.

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Now it’s time to start chopping up the disco housing & completely remove it so I could sleeve the tube with the DOM.

I opened up the vacuum disco block-off plate and stuffed a rag in it so that debris wouldn’t enter the tube as I cut portions of the tube off:

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As you’ll notice here – I cut off the tube close to the axle perch so I could take advantage of as much of the axle tube as possible when I sleeve it.

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Here’s the outer portion of it that I’ll reuse. Notice how I marked the tube so that when I reattach it – my caster should be correct:

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Next up, I opened up the disco housing block-off plate & move my rag to the inside of where I’d be making my second cut.

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Vacuum disco gone:

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#2 User is offline   Joe Dillard 

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Posted 18 June 2009 - 09:00 PM

No, I’m not a dentist :2thumup: there are some deburring tools I use to help remove those nasty/pesky burrs after cutting:

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Then I removed the old RE axle tube shock mount:

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Cleaned up the axle tubes with a flap disc:

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Test fit of the new sleeve, perch & rechecking castor with my angle finder:

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I drilled some holes in the new sleeve so I could plug-weld it in place:

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Test fit & checking castor:

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Marking the new spring perch for welding:

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Fabricating new spring plate and ubolt eliminator plate:

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Since I did a 1” wheelbase stretch some time ago – I needed to drill an offset hole in my spring perch so the centerpin has an exit:

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Measure twice – drill once :2thumup:

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Ubolt eliminator test fit:

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Plug welds complete & beginnings of the sleeve welded:

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Spring perch & ubolt eliminator tact welded & angle rechecked:

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Starting to paint/reassembly & getting ready for final welding:

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Perch & new lower shock tabs welded:

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Nothing ever goes perfectly – right? :lol:

I checked the tube and noticed that the rag I put in it earlier was accidentally left inside. No big deal, I took a broomstick handle & retrieved it:

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That’s better. Notice the ARB crosspin:

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On to the reassembly. Brakes, steering, spindle, shocks, check:

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Drive shaft, breather ARB – check:

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Hubs & tires, check:

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Well, that’s about it. This is just the first fitting. I’ll be changing this design in the future, but you get the idea as to why & how I did it.

#3 User is offline   Rollbar 

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Posted 18 June 2009 - 09:05 PM

Nice Joe, must have been some small pebble you ran over :2thumup:

?-Do you think the welding of the SOA pearch help cause the weakness in the metal.

Also, are U gonna do the drivers side pearch?

U think the spring plate bolted to the pearch will hold w/the torque of the axle?

P.S. Maybe if you change out that grill to some ROUND :2thumup: headlights this won't happen again :lol: J/K
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#4 User is offline   Joe Dillard 

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Posted 18 June 2009 - 09:31 PM

Yea, we had spent some time in Montrose doing Clamity, Scratch & Dent, a few other trails that I don't recall the names of, then in Grand Junction doing Billings Canyon the day before the crack surfaced while I was in Moab.

I suppose that when the old SUA perch was removed, that it could have weakened the axle tube underneath where the SOA perch is welded. Basically, the SOA perch saved the tube from cracking all the way around.

I was thinking about sleeving the driver side as well, then designing a new truss for it too while I'm at it.

I have 7 different HPD30 truss designs that I have fabricated floating around already. Making another shouldn't be too hard but this time I'll be going with a more traditional design since the vacuum disco housing is out of the way.

As far as the perch goes - I welded a piece of flat plate to the top side of the perch & the leaf spring sits on it, then I use bolts to hold the upper plate which sandwiches the leaf spring. It *should* hold. We'll see. :2thumup:

Yea, a CJ front clip & dash mod would be nice. :2thumup:

#5 User is offline   Joe Dillard 

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Posted 18 June 2009 - 09:39 PM

The perch actually looks more like this - except welded all around to the flat plate.

I also ended up removing the small MORE mini riser block that's under the leaf spring too since I no longer needed it.

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#6 User is offline   TranyDoctor 

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Posted 19 June 2009 - 05:01 AM

:2thumup: good write up nice job
i agree with rollbar to use u-bolts. let us know how it works without them

#7 User is offline   Rollbar 

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Posted 19 June 2009 - 09:26 AM

Also Joe, this is just me but I would would turn the bolts so the nut is on the bottom (U still won't have a clearance problem), just in case the nut does come off the bolt will help hold the spring from sliding off the plate, but then again.................
*MY CJ IS YOUR yJ's DADDY*

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#8 User is offline   Monster76 

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Posted 19 June 2009 - 09:44 AM

well when people run a ladder bar setup with the perch floating on a pin under the leaf spring they run it the same way w/out u bolts let us know how it works
89 YJ d44/d60 38" tsl's 4" springs front 4.5" XJ springs in rear HEAVY RIGHT FOOT 4.2 I6 5 spd sye w/custom shafts, some lights and ICE COLD A/C

#9 User is offline   Joe Dillard 

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Posted 19 June 2009 - 12:34 PM

Thanks for the feedback guys. :devilgrin:

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