I am about to reinstall my rear axle components in my rebuild- but don't have that little fiber washer. Is that ultra-critical or can something else suffice in its place? I would prefer not to place an order for one fiber washer.
Any ideas for those who have rebuilt their rear axles?
Honestly James you can't rebuild the rear end correctly without that washer. In fact, one by itself usually isn't thick enough. You need to get two. I'm not sure about a suitable substitute. Would recommend just biting the bullet and ordering them.
One or two disks, have them ship in an envelop. Yes it is important, it takes up the slack between the axles other wise you will have about 1/8 (+/-) of an inch in and out play in the axles. You could use a brass disk. Unless you have a good section of different thicknesses of brass, time and tools to cut one out of the proper thickness material those fiber disk might be real cheap. Sometimes you need more thickness then one disk, two might be too much but one not enough or if your lucky one might be too thick.
Okay, will bite the bullet/disk.
Thanks for the advice!
I have used brass washers. The hole in the middle doesn't seem to make a difference. You can use as many as are needed to make up the proper thickness and the thickness can easily be adjusted by drawing one over a file.
Before I call a supplier, does anyone have a couple fiber washers kicking around? I'd be happy to get someone a few bucks for an envelope and two washers.
Jim in Oswego, IL
Hmmm, I've used a quarter. In the case where I recut the keeper groove to move the axle gear giving the illusion of a longer axle, I used several quarters. Seemed cheaper and easier than ordering the fiber washers. These need to maintain the spacing of the axle ends and thus the axle gears with the spider gears. Washers, coins, or whatever of an appropriate diameter and thickness should be just fine.
Lang's and Smith & Jones will only charge you actual shipping--not the minimum of $10-15/order.
A "silver" ($'s) quarter might work but I think the embossing on the front and back might wear off and change the fit. I don't know if I would use the modern quarter, not sure about the strength of the core.
Send me your address, James.
I machined three different thickness aluminum bronze washers. .090 thick was the winner. Your thickness will be different, measure then adjust
Wear would be pretty slight. Some pressure and rotational wear between axle ends and spacers as the differential works when turning corners. I expect it would take a long time to get a significant change in the thickness of the spacers, whether they be fiber, brass, aluminum bronze, steel, or new quarters. I believe this is another case where there is a right way as well as many alternatives that will give excellent service even if they aren't Henry's way.
I bought a foot of Delrin rod from McMaster a few years ago and just slice a piece of to use between the axles. I use a bandsaw for the cut. Works great, pretty cheap and a foot is enough for a whole lotta rear ends.
I think there's something sick about someone wanting to put a fiber washer in their rearend. It's certainly become a Liberal's world. You wouldn't have gotten away with talking like this back in the fifties. Back then people had scruples. Morality was important. As if all the piercings and tattoos weren't enough and now it's come to some crazy activity with fiber washers.
"I bought a foot of Delrin rod from McMaster a few years ago and just slice a piece of to use between the axles. I use a bandsaw for the cut. Works great, pretty cheap and a foot is enough for a whole lotta rear ends."
I cut them on a lathe but you are spot on!
I like the picture on your profile!
Some have used a ball bearing instead of a fiber washer.
It will stay in place because of the centering hole in the end of the axles.
Put some heavy grease on the axle to hold it for assembly or use some RTV and glue it to one of the axles.
You can also stack up a bunch of throttle shaft disks from old carbs. Here is a trick to see how thick it should be. With the pinion gears not installed, assemble the center carrier. Push the axle ends together with one gear tight against the carrier. The space between the back of the other axle gear and the carrier is the thickness of washer you need between the axles.
I'm with Gary. I bought a couple feet of some kind of stuff years ago and it has lasted for about 70 Ruckstell rebuilds.
I use a good old brass $1 coin. My linisher belt takes a little weight off Queen Lizzies face, and the kangaroos disappear as I linish the other side to get the correct fit
Your currency may vary.
Allan from down under.
Lol at Mike G. Has it thawed out up your way yet Mike?
I think this a good place to use a roller thrust washer. Think of how much less friction there will be. This will improve gas mileage and make your car more reliable.
If you are detecting any sarcasm, it could be because I'm laying on pretty thick.
I think at our age we all need fiber for our rear ends!
Steve- sent you a PM, many thanks! - Jim
When you buy the rear end gasket set the fiber washer comes with it. Pretty cheap insurance.
I recommend using the fiber rather than metal. When you turn a corner the axles are rotating in opposite directions and you want the wear on the fiber rather than on the metal. It will also make your rear axle quieter by keeping the clearances for the gears.
Jim call me Bob
Already mailed off.
Norman : can you explain me : when you turn a corner the axles rotating in the opposite directions ???
Mike G, if the fiber washer in the rear end makes you squeemish, don't even start about the thrust washer........
I used one fiber and a thin bit of stainless sheet I had that was the correct dimension. Some day will see what side wore the most. After about 5 years of driving, I can feel no push pull on the axle.
The differential action causes the wheel on the outside of the turn to spin faster than the one on the inside of the turn. Technologically, both wheels are moving in the same direction, but in relation to each other it is as if one is moving backward. Jack up both rear wheels and spin one and you will see what happens to the other.
James, I may be to late but I saw some one in past magazine, say you can put a small ball bearing between the two axle ends. I don't know what size.
Thanks for the ideas! Much appreciated!
Seth, it got pretty nice out today. Spring might happen yet before Fall gets here. Dennis, I agree. Maybe that's the problem with some of us, too much fiber. Erich, you are a sick individual. I wish I would have come up with that one. I thought mine was good but you get the prize.
Has anyone considered that if you are running safety hubs the fibre washer is pointless. In my usual fashion I set up the axle end float to zero and run safety hubs. No end float there!!!
Wouldn't it be easier set the axles to 0 back and fourth movement with a disk in place before installing the safety hubs? You would now have almost an 1/8 inch empty space between the axles without the disk in place.
I think float refers to the up and down moment not in and out.
I heard once a nickel would work, but I'm pretty sure whoever said a quarter would work should do some checking! I have a bunch of NOS fiber spacers, and no, two will not work! I use one, because that is what the Ford book says to do!
One usually isn't quite thick enough to really do the trick. So you take two and thin them both down on some sandpaper. It's a process of checking the fit, sanding, checking the fit, sanding, repeat repeat repeat until you assemble the spider carrier and the axles are snug but can be turned by hand. If there's no resistance at all then your washer isn't thick enough - which means there's room for the axles to move in and out (not good).
It is a 30 second deal to find out how thick the washer needs to be. Read my post above on how to do it. Works for both standard differentials and Ruckstells.