Under the category of 1 step forward, 2 bus trips backwards, a transmission problem.
Car won't move in low gear, high gear, or reverse. Car pushes easily. Removed inspection cover, nothing obvious. With engine turning over, engage a gear, can see head of driveshaft turn. Take one wheel off ground. Can turn that wheel fairly easily. With both wheels off ground, no excessive play, keys seem fine. Turn one wheel, other wheel wants to turn in same direction, though grabbing it will stop motion while other wheel is still able to be turned. While all this is going on, no grinding or crunching. Clearly some time with Messrs Lang & Craftsman is in my future, question is, what flavor.
Broken drive shaft or pinion broke loose from shaft.
Something in the rear axle broke.
Im with eric.Got to be driveshshaft related.for instance,the pinion gear could have split in half.
And,if a driveshaft is broken with any length laying in the tube,it whirls around in there and makes a racket.Some of the older repop pinions were made with the keyway in the wrong spoot,and they split.Once in awhile l used to tear apart a junkpile rearend and all that it would need was a pinion key,was stripped,and thrust washers.Those were the days
Everything inside the axle housings and driveshaft tube are scrap.
Sorry, but a valid guess based on my personal experience.
Royce, can't you tell him there is at least one good part? Sugar coat it a little.
Maybe the bolts and nuts if I am lucky.
My guess would be solid rollers on the drive shaft bearing siezed resulting in a broken drive shaft. A new drive shaft, bearing, and ring and pinion "might" be all thats required.
Royce, Henry might feel better now.
Worst for me loosing rear axle babbit thrust washers at 40 mph
Try something easy to check first. You might be lucky. Check to see if your U-joint is intact. Some years back when (as it turned out) my U-joint broke I had similar symptoms: No go in any pedal or High gear; and, the car pushed real easily. Normally my car was a very stiff push especially when cold. Lots of resistance in the clutch pack with the oil kind of sticking the 25 plates together.
If you are still using transmission brake, it will not work either. Could be a broken axle, or pinion gear, anything in the rear end from the universal joint to the wheels. Need to remove and inspect, then fix everything which is broken. Been there, done that. Glad I had Rocky Mountain brakes.
A comment on broken drive shaft. I had the drive shaft crack first and then break. It was under the race at the rear end for the spool bearing to run on. Because it was pressed on, friction let it run for a little bit with jerky movement and then nothing because it pulled apart enough to slip. No forward movement, no brakes, but no rattle noise as mentioned above. With the symptoms mentioned above, I would look at the drive shaft first before opening up the rear end. However, like I said, the race will hold the drive shaft pretty tight and you would have to pull it apart with some pressure to test it.
Thanks to all (especially Royce! The glass isn't even half empty - it's gone!). If I want to start by pulling the driveshaft to confirm that is not the cause, can that be done without dropping the axle? And if the axle has to come out first, should I drop the entire axle with the leaf still attached, and walk the entire thing out?
I know there are a lot of great threads already on splitting the axle, but right now, just looking for some suggestions on where to start looking.
I recently had a similar issue on a friend's car. By loosening the six bolts at the pinion, I could hear and tell that the driveshaft was spinning. The "Mark" pinion gear had split into three pieces. The driveshaft was also cracked near the end. The book, Model T Ford in Speed and Sport" lists a method of removing the driveshaft only. Page 42 states that by loosening the six bolts at the rear pinion, the four on the transmission, and then the radius rod nuts, and by twisting the driveshaft, the radius rods will pull out. Then, by pulling down on the radius rods, the driveshaft will come out. I tried it on a Warford car, and could not get it to work. At that point you could probably use a magnet to get broken parts out, but you probably will have to take the rear end out anyway. You could also just remove the left side differential housing as done in the Ruckstell instructions, but again, it is probably just easier to pull the rear end.
Probably the pinion gear key sheared. Take the rear axle only out, no need to remove the spring. You might as well check everything over and only fix (overhaul) the axle "once" while it's apart.
I was avoiding removing the axle without the spring at first as I did not know how much tension is in the spring. Will the spring move when those bolts into the shackles are removed?
Henry, there is no sense in fooling around and checking anything. The problem is in the rear axle and you will not be able to fix it without taking the whole thing out and rebuilding it. I agree with Royce. Every time I've taken apart a T rear axle nearly everything was trashed especially if it blew up. The good news is everything is available and it's not very difficult to do, just a little time consuming.
Henry, not to worry about springs. Someone posted when re-installling rear axle just put a 2x4 block on top of axle on each side and by using the jack slowly you can line up and install shackles very easy.I agree with others. Better open rear axle and have a look while its down that far.
Drive safe and often
Stephen,l would like to know your definition of a T rear end 'blowing up'.In nearly 40 years of playing with T's,A's,(in the double digits of both-that l built up from parts,myself) l have NEVER run across a Ford rear end that EVER approached grenading the housings,which 'blowing up'implies.And this includes an old boys hot,tire burning A-V8.The stock rear end took it.Sure,stuff inside wears out and breaks.
Jim someone posted photos last year of a T rear end that had holes blown through the case when it went critical. Wish I could remember how far back it was. Maybe someone remembers or has the link to post.
What channel is this reality show, on?
Steve's video linked above about removing the rear axle is very good, though I don't always split the spring from the axle by the perches, since I think it's easier to remove the perches alltogether when you already have the wheels off. That'll gradually loosen any tension in the spring and is also an easy way to attach it when the axle is going back in place.
I had this happen to me once. After installing the rear end in a rebuild, had to do a panic stop. When I jammed my foot on the brake, there was a bang and the car went free wheeling. No brakes, no movement from the peddles, NO NOISE. I had not tightened the pinyon nut with the required two foot cheater bar. The woodruff key sheared in two and the turning pinyon also turned the nut, shearing the cotter pin. Car pushed onto the trailer real easy.
An update. Axle and drive shaft out. The pinion nut had backed off, along with the pinion. I have the Glen Chaffin Book. On removing the spool piece, this is what I found. How would it be that there is no roller bearing?
Holy cow! Somebody put it together without a pinion roller bearing!? The inner sleeve doesn't look like it is pressed on far enough, was there a key in the shaft keyway? The threads on the end of the driveshaft don't look that great, hopefully they will clean up
Looks like you're a good candidate for the Fun Projects pinion bearing kit.
No bearing in the housing??
The pinion nut and the key had already fallen into the rear end case. The key was not sheared. As far as the housing and it's bearing, to paraphrase Winnie the pooh, only the empty part was left.
Henry, I'm no expert but I'd pretty much guess, based on the above photo, that ain't gonna work. I figure it just might be your problem.
I've tried to splain to youse guys, I've got a sort of sense for the obvious.
The car did drive, before the pinion fell off. It's all going to be rebuilt. But would the thrust bearings keep the driveshaft centered enough to keep the pinion engaged with the ring?
Only just Henry. The pinion gear mesh would be way off, and it would not last long that way, but I think it would drive.
Allan from down under.