rear axle trouble

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svaasand
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rear axle trouble

Post by svaasand » Thu Aug 17, 2017 3:34 am

I was driving around on the War&Peace show with my M274A5, when following happened:

First there starting coming unusal noise from transmission/rear axle, like metal grinding on metal, or bearing noise. There was also noticable drag on the driveline, because the mule came to a stop quite fast after pressing the clutch.
When trying to move after this, the mule would only roll only approximately 5 feet, before something completely blocks the axles. Then it could reverse the same 5 feet, before same thing happens. It is as something is completely blocking a gear (like an auto transmission in park).
Exactly the same if the clutch is pressed, if the transmission is in neutral, and the high/low in neutral. Also after removing the driveshaft to the front axle, so the problem is in the rear axle/transmission assembly.

This of course created a problem with getting the mule back up on my F350 pickup to get it back home. I now have proof that it is possible for 6 men to pick up a mule by hand, and lift it up into a truck bed!

Now I have the mule back in my workshop, and of course next step is to look into the axle assembly. Any ideas what I should look for?
-Lars Svaasand

Chuck W.
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Re: rear axle trouble

Post by Chuck W. » Thu Aug 17, 2017 9:36 am

Drain the oil out of both rear drop axle housings and check for metal. Would be my guess that you have failed a bearing, probably an inner axle bearing. It's pretty amazing how much damage can occur in a short amount of time when this happens. Hold on to your wallet, it's an expensive ride!
Check this post for more info on an inner bearing failure:
viewtopic.php?f=148&t=274312&p=1596306& ... g#p1596306

It's VERY important that you check the oil in all 4 drop housings on a regular basis. NO GREASE! 90 wt GO only!
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muleman7
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Re: rear axle trouble

Post by muleman7 » Fri Aug 18, 2017 4:01 am

Hope the following helps if you need information or parts please e-mail me or PM.

I like to use heat on the gear cover housing Oxy-Act to release the gasket. I do not like to scrape gaskets especially around studs.

Once you get the gear cover housing off remove the bottom driven gear and idler gear.

The needle bearings 3 ea may fall apart and will have to be replaced. the two in the gear cover housing can be driven out, the one in the drop gear housing must be pulled out of the blind hole. Use a bearing puller or carefully collapse the race using a small screwdriver caution do not gouge the bore.

Grease is not the proper lube as Chuck stated 90wt GO is recommended. I use 80w-90wt it pours easier in the winter.

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Notice there are bearings missing. Use your finger to spin the bearings if good they will not fall out. I suggest you replace all 3 they are not the expensive parts.

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Pullers used to remove the B1412 bearings and the axle gear



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Blind Hole bearing remover this a Snap On tool but Harbor Freight sells one [Pittsburgh] that works very well. $69.99

https://www.harborfreight.com/slide-ham ... 62601.html

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Replace top axle seal and grease the 205 bearing [remove the bearing sheilds since it is lubed with GO and must be open]

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Remove snap ring for top axle Then pry out

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Remove snap ring holding gear on

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Then press off gear to replace the 205 bearing

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Tools used

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Chuck W.
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Re: rear axle trouble

Post by Chuck W. » Fri Aug 18, 2017 9:05 am

Great photos, Charles! Really helps show people how to remove the snap ring BEHIND the axle gear.

Be sure to read TM9-2320-246-34, page 5-12, and understand how to measure the end play (.001 - .003") in the bottom helical driven gear, adjustments are made by removing or installing shims behind the inner and outer bearing cups.......very important, check it even if you don't replace the cups and cones!
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svaasand
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Re: rear axle trouble

Post by svaasand » Tue Aug 22, 2017 10:51 pm

Thanks for the good tips and photo instructions!

The problem was exactly as you predicted, lack of lubrication in left rear drop axle caused both the inner axle bearing, and the needle bearings in the intermediate shaft to fail completely. I have not yet managed to remove the damaged bearings, but it looks like that the axle or housing itself is not damaged (crossing fingers).
-Lars Svaasand


muleman7
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Re: rear axle trouble

Post by muleman7 » Wed Aug 23, 2017 3:13 am

Got your e-mail and will respond today.
Mules are my passion
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svaasand
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Re: rear axle trouble

Post by svaasand » Wed Aug 23, 2017 7:05 am

Thanks to Charles / muleman for lightning fast help. Parts from him are already in the mail.
-Lars Svaasand

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