The other day, I started a thread about transmission triple gears and was directed by the fine members here to check my rear axle. Failed babbitt thrust washers were the suspected cause. I did a panic stop which resulted in loud banging in the drivetrain. I removed the axle assembly and took it apart. It was an easy job for it's size in my opinion. I found 15 broken teeth on the ring gear. All the other gears were fine. Amazingly, the original babbitt thrust washers were still intact. The thrust plate pins on the housings are done for and one set of thrust plates was spinning which wore down a thrust plate washer to nearly half it's thickness. The other babbitt washer is still in museum grade condition. See pics below. You can even read the Ford script and T36 part number in the groove. The big problem was the axle shafts. They are worn very badly where all four bearings make contact. You can actually see the slope down to the worn area from ten feet away.
I really want to make the Old Car Festival and need to get this axle working again fast whether it is perfect or not. Expensive, junk aftermarket parts are out of the question. At a minimum, I will need axles, a ring gear, new thrust bearing pins and of course, bronze thrust bearing washers. I don't know if it's possible to find good used axle shafts. I have a few leads. Does anyone here have parts like that for sale within driving distance from Southern Ontario? I can travel to upper New York State, Detroit Michigan area etc. Thanks.
Dave, I would buy 2 of the new axles which are a 1/16" longer on the taper. Your hubs are probably worn and the longer taper will compensate for this and help ensure a good fit between the hub and the axle. In order for an original axle to be usable it must have a good taper, good threads, a good key way, good bearing surfaces, and the gear must fit tight with a good key way. Most axles have problems in at least one of these areas. Also, when you replace the ring gear it would be best to also replace the pinion with either a matched original set or with a new set. Very carefully inspect the original pinion bearing sleeve, many are cracked. It would be a very good idea to completely rebuild the drum brakes and install lined shoes so that you have another set of fairly powerful brakes should the transmission brake fail or to use for a panic stop.
Thanks Stephan. I do have lined shoes which work well. The hubs are good and the wheels fit tightly. That end of the axle is good. It's the bearing areas that are badly worn. I'm still hoping to find used axles. I will watch out for the problems you mentioned.
If John Danuser doesn't jump in here soon check with Bob Bergstadt....... http://www.bobsantiqueautoparts.com/
You might also give http://modelthaven.com/nparts.html a shout.
have you checked with John McInnes in Niagara falls?
I think I have a set of good axles in my shed. Let me have a look and see tomorrow.
Forgot to add that I am headed to Fort Erie on Friday morning, so if I do have a good set, I can even drop them off on the way back if you want.....
I have one good axle with a good gear still on it.
I also have a good ring gear - one of the bolts is broke off, but should be an easy job of drilling it out.
Both are yours for the taking if you need them. I can drop them off on Friday late morning/early afternoon if you want.
I have new ring gears and pinions, std, or 3:1, also the thrust bearing pins, and the thrust bronze plates, can ship today if needed, can't help on axles as I don't keep them in stock email@example.com
Shoot man! I need friends like Greg - people just dropping stuff off for you that you need, no mention of payment or whatever.
Guys I'm in eastern North Carolina and could really use some of those 21" wire wheels that accept demountable rims (Snyder's has them), somebody hook me up!! LOL
Seth 21in wire wheels don't take demontable rims, as the rims are made on the wire wheel
Check these out John - it's a 21" wire wheel, that accepts my 21" demountable rim (that right now is on a wood spoke wheel)
I really would love to have a set of these, I just start choking and coughing every time I see how much they cost though.
At 700.00 each it makes you wonder what a good set of Buffalo wheels go for now...
Try to find a "Good" set of Buffalo's !
Thanks for all the awesome help everyone. Steve, I keep hearing about John McInnes and I have his number. I will should contact him soon and find out what he's about. Greg, I will take you up on your generous offer. I will send you a PM.
McInnes Antique Auto Parts is operated by John and Nancy. They drive over the border to Mac's every week for stuff they do not have in their own stock.
Plus he knows the T'ers in the area for leads on used parts
I drive to Mac's often myself but, I might as well check in with McInnes Antique Auto Parts. They could save me a trip across the border. Thanks again Steve.
Here is a pic showing the damaged ring gear and another pic showing the cause. Look at this axle shaft. You can see how badly pitted it is where there are no bearings. The area where the bearings go is severely worn. Look at the extreme taper. This made everything loose and all it took was one hard stop to make the ring gear get away from the pinion and then re-engage resulting in broken gear teeth. I would have to think nobody ever changed the axle fluid. Poor axles, the most neglected part of cars since the dawn of the twentieth century.
Dave, that axle looks fine.
Ed, I should have mentioned, that's not the tapered outside end of the axle, that's the inner end where the roller bearing sits up against the differential.
Yes, it looks fine. The axle is machined down where the bearing rides.
Well, I don't know because I've never seen another T axle. I hope someone here has a picture of one. I can't see any reason why it would be machined down. The bearing slides easily over the thick parts of the shaft so, why machine it down? You can also see in the pic how uneven the wear is. What machine would do that?
After reading all this I went out to the shop and looked at a couple of old axles. Ed is right that the inner end that rides in the bearing is machined down a little. You need to measure what you have. The bearing surfaces should measure 1.062". In the MTFCA book Glen says one or two thousandths wear is acceptable.
I gather you're in a hurry. OK, if the pinion bearing and sleeve measure within a few thousandths you may get by with them temporarily. But if they're worn beyond the recommendations in the book, I'd open that axle up again pretty soon and install the Fun Projects bearing kit.
The Hyatt bearing slides over the unmachined part because it the rollers are not contained by the sleeve. The un-machined part looks uneven because the shaft is machined while it is centered by dimples in each end. The rough looking part is not pitted from rust, and is just fine the way it is, it is a forging.
It occurs to me that so far I've seen nothing about the condition of the Hyatt bearings. If the axles are worn at the bearing surfaces, how are the bearings? See page 24 for details.
Ed, it turns out you are totally correct in your last posting. The axle was made that way and there is no wear at all on any part except for one thrust washer and one thrust plate. Most of the housing pins are sheared off too. Greg Whaley dropped off a ring gear and axle for me today. Thanks Greg! I won't need the axle as it measures exactly the same as mine. The ring gear is now installed on the differential housing.I picked up all the small parts I need at Mac's. I will post later with the results.
Great! See you at the OCF!
Did you disassemble and check out the driveshaft?
I wonder why the ring gear teeth were broken? The bearing sleeve on the drive shaft has an annoying habit of cracking into pieces and destroy other parts in the rear end - a Fun Projects modern pinion bearing is safer in the long run: http://www.funprojects.com/products/2587e1.cfm
I second what Roger says, if you're in the rear end, you have to just go ahead and rebuild the drive shaft assembly. Otherwise you can have things get screwed up once they're put back together.
Got it working great mostly thanks to Greg Whaley who gave me a free ring gear. I only met Greg once yet he helped me out like that. He's that kind of guy. A true dedicated T man. Thanks Greg. I spent 14 hours working on it yesterday to get it done so I could drive it today. I did think of the drive shaft but, it seemed smooth and solid and I wanted to finish the car so I could go to the OCF. If it breaks down again after the festival, so be it. The enormous play in the the rear end is now gone. The trouble was a badly worn babbitt thrust washer.