Model T Rear-end

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Model T Ford Forum: Forum 2013: Model T Rear-end
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By rick howerton on Sunday, August 18, 2013 - 02:27 pm:

I have a model T rear-end that I am restoring. After tightening the housing bolts the axels are seized up. I am told the parts of model T are all interchangeable from year to year. Please help.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Seth from NC on Sunday, August 18, 2013 - 02:39 pm:

Hey Rick, when when you put the ring gear carrier and axles back together, are you using new brass thrust washers? They are sandwiched by steel plates and they basically help the ring gear and carrier stay centered. However, when new, they are almost always too thick and need to be thinned in order to run properly.

I put my axle guts in one housing and then tighten the housing together like you did. Then, if I can't turn the ring gear with my thumb, I take the housings back apart and sand those thrust washers down. I like to use a piece of 200-400 grit sandpaper on a flat surface, place the thrust washer on there, then use the same grit sandpaper on a random orbital sander and sandwich the thrust washer. The sand paper on the bottom helps hold the washer still. Then just use a micrometer to see what you are starting with - sand both sides evenly (I count usually for about 20 seconds) and check the thickness after. Then put your assembly back together and tighten the housing but without the gasket. Repeat this process until you can turn the ring gear with your thumb even with the housings tight.

The main thing is to try and keep the thrust washers the same thickness so that the ring gear carrier stays centered in the housings. It's a pain in the neck because there's a lot of putting together and taking apart and the pieces are really heavy, but I don't think there's any other way to do it.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Hap Tucker in Sumter SC on Sunday, August 18, 2013 - 02:47 pm:

Rick,

From your profile it looks like this is your first posting. Welcome aboard!

Many of the parts are interchangeable for the rear axle assemblies but not necessarily for all years and all parts. Please confirm what year rear axle you are working on -- or if you are not sure -- please post some photos of the backing plates, filler plug location, and the drive shaft pinion area so folks will have a better feel for what it is. Your profile mentions 1926 we just want to confirm that is or is not what you have.

"IF" the you have the drive shaft installed and it turns free until you tighten up the housing bolts -- then something is binding somewhere (probably too little clearance one or more places).

Please give us a little more background and it will help folks give you a better answer. Did you start with a rear axle assembly that was in a running and driving car and you only wanted to replace the babbit thrust washers or something similar?

Did you start with a single rear axle assembly or did you combine parts from several rear axle assemblies?

Did you put in any new parts such as bronze thrust washers [see: http://www.modeltford.com/item/2528.aspx ] ? That would be my guess from the 4 sentences you shared. Historically in most cases the reproduction bronze thrust washers need to be reduced in thickness so the rear axle functions properly -- i.e. so it turns without binding. But there could be other reasons also.

Recommend you contact some folks local to you see the club listings at: http://www.mtfca.com/clubpages/chapters.htm and http://www.modelt.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=5&Itemid=15

The MTFCA (site you are on) also has a great booklet on restoring the rear axle and a DVD on restoring the rear axle. They can also be great help please see: http://modeltstore.myshopify.com/products/service-manuals and http://modeltstore.myshopify.com/products/restoration-videos series 5 of the DVDs. Several of the local clubs have a library that you can check the DVD or booklet out of.

Again welcome to the forum and hobby. I'm sure as you share a few more details others will be able to help you pin point your problem(s).

Respectfully submitted,

Hap l9l5 cut off


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Dale Peterson on Sunday, August 18, 2013 - 02:47 pm:

First, before adjusting the thickness, make sure the upper most thrust washer has not slipped off the pins. Some grease to "glue" it in place helps during assembly. Don't need to ask how I learned this.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Walt Berdan, Bellevue, WA on Sunday, August 18, 2013 - 02:56 pm:

First, I hope you have and are using the service manual for the rear axle rebuild.

A couple of things can cause things to bind up. First and easiest to fix is that one or more of the steel thrust plates may have slipped from their aligning pins and creating the bind. The other choice is that the thrust bushings may be too thick causing the bind.

It's easier to get things right if the housing is sitting with the axle shafts vertical. With the axles vertical, use wheel bearing grease to hold the thrust washers. One steel and brass washer on the lower housing, another steel held to the gear carrier and slip the axle/gear assembly in carefully. Then add one steel and brass thrust washer on the top of the gear/axle assembly and using bearing grease stick the final steel washer to the other housing. Gently place position the second housing half without dislodging the steel thrust washer. This only takes three or four hands as you ease the housing on, get the inner hyatt bearings seated and don't dislodge the steel thrust washer. Well, two hands a couple of tries with your mouth held right can work too. Don't get too carried away with the wheel bearing grease between the thrust washers, just enough there to make sure they have some initial lubrication.

If the axles are still bound up when the washers are all positioned properly, the brass thrust washers may be too thick. In that case, assemble as above and without tightening the bolts, use a feel gauge between the housing to see how much needs to be faced from the thrust washers to free things up.

You didn't indicate any issues with ring/pinion clearance. Hopefully that's already dealt with. If so, and if you need to face a thrust washer, only face the washer that is on the same side as the teeth of the ring gear.

The above works for me. Your mileage may vary.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By rick howerton on Sunday, August 18, 2013 - 05:33 pm:

After reading everyone`s thoughts,I think I'll try some used thrust washers. Thanks everyone!!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Roger Karlsson, southern Sweden on Sunday, August 18, 2013 - 05:47 pm:

As long as you don't use any old white metal "babbitt" thrust washers - they'll break without warning. Brass is better.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By keith g barrier on Sunday, August 18, 2013 - 07:13 pm:

If you use the modern thrust bearings there is no fitting, plug and play. KB


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By clayton swanson on Sunday, August 18, 2013 - 10:30 pm:

buy glen chaffins book, you wont regret the ten bucks


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