Should I build a Ruxtell Myself?

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Model T Ford Forum: Forum 2017: Should I build a Ruxtell Myself?
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Don - Conroe, TX on Monday, November 27, 2017 - 03:27 pm:

I'm about to take apart and inspect the rear end in my 24 Touring.

The car was placed in storage in the late 60's in thoroughly used condition so I'm assuming the thrust washers are Babbitt and will need replacing, and...there's probably more that I'll find that'll need some attention.

All of that doesn't particularly intimidate me. I've never rebuilt a T rear end but I've rebuilt small block Chevies and Fords in my garage, etc.

All that having been said....I REALLY want a Ruxtell. So my question is...is this something the average bear, non-mechanical-novice, can do in his garage if said bear orders all the bits?

Or...should this be left to the professional bears?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mack Cole ---- Earth on Monday, November 27, 2017 - 03:34 pm:

I would say go for it. IF all else fails,the professional bears can put it back together in their sleep from peach baskets.
the only issue I had refurbishing a T rear end was I got the ring gear and stuff in backwards and had 2 reverses and 1 forwards. :-(


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Jim Kelsey on Monday, November 27, 2017 - 03:36 pm:

Don:

Yes, you can. I did it with minimal tools, experience, and help from Chaffin's book https://www.modeltford.com/item/RX3.aspx.
I would also suggest buying the Fun Projects adjustable pinion bearing replacement, that way you don't have to worry about using a dial indicator to set up the endplay between the pinion and ring gears. http://www.funprojects.com/products/2587e1a.aspx


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Norman T. Kling on Monday, November 27, 2017 - 03:59 pm:

One of the most important things to get right is the placement of the Ruckstell housing on the left side axle tube. I would leave that part to professionals. Chaffin will do it for you if you send him your housing.

The rest can be done by carefully following the instructions in the book "Ruckstell Axle".
Norm


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Don - Conroe, TX on Monday, November 27, 2017 - 04:13 pm:

Thanks for the input.

Jim...what was your total cost, roughly, for the whole project?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Duey_C-west central, MN on Monday, November 27, 2017 - 04:46 pm:

:-) You sitting down Don? :-)
I'm interested also.
Yes, you sure can do it.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kevin Whelihan Danbury, WI on Monday, November 27, 2017 - 04:48 pm:

Get Chaffins Ruckstell kit. All CNC machined parts and they will do the left axle as part of the deal. I went that route and it was not only fun to do, but turned out great!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Jim Kelsey on Monday, November 27, 2017 - 05:42 pm:

Don:

My car already had a Ruckstell in it, so I spent roughly $1000.00 in parts through Chaffin's and the $100.00 on the spool through Fun Projects. Mike Conrad bought my used parts and said they weren't all that worn; however, I had a hair-raising experience when it got stuck in neutral as I was heading towards a traffic light going 30 mph with my 2-yr-old daughter in the back. Fortunately, I was able to pop it back into gear and the light changed to green as we were approaching the intersection. I decided things needed to be replaced and it hasn't popped into neutral since.

I replaced everything inside with the exception of the ring and pinion gears and the roller pins in the shifter housing. The housing is really worn and has shims in it. I would have replaced it had I had the money, but for now, it shifts solidly.

Not long after I had rebuilt the Ruckstell, the hyatt bearing sleeve fore of the pinion gear disintegrated in the Fred Meyer parking lot, leaving me with no transmission brake. It was a cheap repop that left a mess of metal in the pumpkin. So....I got to rebuild it a second time and this time put on the Fun Projects spool and it has served me well for probably 1000 miles.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Steve Tomaso - Longbranch,WA on Monday, November 27, 2017 - 09:30 pm:

Those are not "a cheap repop" inner sleeve Jim - as far as I know, the same manufacturer has been supply them to all the vendors for years - me included ! I've installed dozens of them - including into 3 of my T's because there was no "Fun Projects" spool bearing alternative at that time. Perhaps it was the installer ?


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Larry Smith, Lomita, California on Friday, December 01, 2017 - 10:38 am:

The first thing you need to do is learn how to spell Ruckstell! If you are so inclined, I would install one. They are pretty easy to assemble, and there is a lot of information out there for you to read.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Scott Conger - Wyoming on Friday, December 01, 2017 - 10:50 am:

Don

now that you've had your Spelling Lesson, take Larry up on his offer to install one for you. :-)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mark Strange - Hillsboro, MO on Friday, December 01, 2017 - 11:16 am:

You can do it! Be sure to get and read the MTFCA Ruckstell book first:

https://modeltstore.myshopify.com/products/service-manuals

I bought my Ruckstell on Ebay and ended up going completely through it. It had a new pinion gear in it, but the ring gear was toast, so I bought a new one from one of the vendors. I also replaced the babbitt thrust washers with bronze, installed new Hyatt bearing sleeves, and new ring gear bolts as a matter of course.

On the advice of Stan Howe, I replaced the stock carrier ball bearing with the modern bearing that the vendors sell. Stan also advised me to install new planetary gear pins and suggested that I replace the stock driveshaft bearing assembly with the Fun Projects non-adjustable bearing kit:

http://www.funprojects.com/products/2587e1.aspx

Note that I drilled extra holes in the bronze thrust plate (so that each groove had a hole at the end of it) to allow for better circulation of lubrication.


pic1

pic2

pic3


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Don - Conroe, TX on Friday, December 01, 2017 - 11:56 am:

Awesome....this is pushing me in the direction on getting started on this.

And yeah...the spelling thing. You'd think that $50K I spent for a chemistry degree would've taught me how to spell ;-)

I guess you can take the boy out of the farm but not the farm out of the boy.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Glen Chaffin on Friday, December 01, 2017 - 03:32 pm:

Everyone spells Ruckstell wrong. But you can't go wrong with the restoration if you follow my Ruckstell repair book and start with page one and follow the instructions in the order presented. Do not skip around. There is a reason for the order and it will be simple if you follow the order.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Scott Conger - Wyoming on Friday, December 01, 2017 - 03:48 pm:

Glen

thanks for everything you've done for the hobby!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Gene Carrothers Huntington Beach on Friday, December 01, 2017 - 04:38 pm:

Why not a Warford? Then you have underdrive And an overdrive to boot with the direct in between!

make sure you get Chafins Ruckstell book, It's the best!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Gene Carrothers Huntington Beach on Friday, December 01, 2017 - 04:40 pm:

Why not a Warford? Then you have underdrive And an overdrive to boot with the direct in between!

make sure you get Chafins Ruckstell book, It's the best!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Stan Howe Helena, Montana on Friday, December 01, 2017 - 06:55 pm:

This is not even cheap advice -- it is free advice. Start with a new bronze thrust plate and a new or very good bearing. About half or more of the problems with the ring and pinion fit and things not being where you want them are because a LOT of the bronze plates are bent in from years of service. A lot of the bearings in old setups are not correct and do not locate the bronze plate correctly. It's the best $250 you can spend. You can often buy SKF or similar top quality thrust bearings off ebay for 30-40 bucks from the surplus sellers. Just make sure it is a thrust type bearing. ALL Ruckstell (Ruxtell) (Ruckul) (Ruxsel) (Etc) bearing sizes are the same as all bearing sizes. They are measured in metric measurement. The one you need is a 22 x 110 x 60. Width x outside diameter x inside diameter. The letters tell you the design. BECBY is a thrust type if I remember right.

I did over 70 of them and still have half a dozen either complete ones or parts to get rid of. There is certainly not the interest in them there was a few years ago. I quit doing them, pulled down my web site and all the photos on how and what to do to get them all together and working because some people get all bent out of shape not only over how you spell (which I am very good at and pretty tolerant of other people's creative spellings) but also of how I do or did things after learning from Lewis Rector -- Ford mechanic from 1915 to 2006 -- and from doing dozens of them myself.

For example, I set up the ring and pinion by running soft solder through the gears. Worked for Lewis, worked for me. Not everyone agreed with doing it that way. Worked for me.

IMHO -- and there are lots of people who will put one together for you -- I'd have Glen or his crew, Ross Lilliker, Steve Tomaso or some of the other guys with a lot of experience put it together if you are not comfortable doing one yourself but in the day Ford shops gave the mechanic an hour flat rate to install one so they are not as tough as you think. Go for it.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Kurt Baltrusch on Friday, December 01, 2017 - 07:17 pm:

You might consider a new Warford. Easy install and a nice overdrive and not too much more expensive.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Bill Dugger on Friday, December 01, 2017 - 07:27 pm:

Don: I have put two of them together! Both worked good till I broke and axle in one , however the axle was at fault not me.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Don - Conroe, TX on Friday, December 01, 2017 - 08:26 pm:

Thanks for all the great advice everyone. It is sincerely appreciated.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Jim Kelsey on Sunday, December 03, 2017 - 02:03 am:

Steve:

I have made many learning curve errors over the years and I certainly don't have as much rebuild experience as you do, but I am extremely confident that I wasn't at fault here. I followed the rebuild instructions meticulously the first time when installing the driveline to the differential and rebuilding the Ruckstell. Whenever I had a question, Dave at Chaffin's was a great help. Going back through my repair log, I rebuilt the Ruckstell in October, 2012 and drove the car until November, 2013 when the crankshaft broke. The engine was rebuilt by Dave Johnson in February, 2014 and the first day that I drove it with the rebuilt engine was when the sleeve disintegrated. According to my notes, "spent entire month of May taking the differential apart and cleaning out the chewed-up sleeve. Hyatt bearing was also destroyed. Driveline was scored." According to Dave, those sleeves are not made to the same metallurgical standards that the original ones were and that the new ones are prone to failure. He is the one that recommended the Fun Projects kit to me and it has worked beautifully for the past three years. I figure that I put anywhere from 500-1000 miles on the car a year.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Larry Smith, Lomita, California on Sunday, December 03, 2017 - 10:57 am:

I don't know if this is in the books, but when you press a new ball bearing on the bronze thrust plate, put the gear locking thrust plate under it, to prevent dishing thrust plate.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Steve Tomaso - Longbranch,WA on Sunday, December 03, 2017 - 11:13 am:

Perhaps Glen Chaffin might chime in here regarding the steel composition & properties of the # 2596 d.s. inner sleeve - Dave Johnson IS NOT a metallurgist and I sure as hell wouldn't believe everything he says as "Gospel" !!!

As you know, I've have dozens of Ruckstells & standard rear axle assemblies running around all over the P.N.W. - both with that particular sleeve installed and F.P.'s modern spool bearing assembly - I have yet to have one come back due to that sleeve failing or any other failure !


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mark Strange - Hillsboro, MO on Sunday, December 03, 2017 - 11:18 am:

Larry, I just checked, the warning to put the locking plate in the bronze thrust plate when pressing the bearing on to prevent dishing of the thrust plate is in the book (step 17). :-)

BTW, for first timers, there are two holes in the bronze thrust plate that allow access to the back side of the bearing race to give access to a punch for removal of the old bearing. :-)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Roger Karlsson, southern Sweden on Sunday, December 03, 2017 - 11:59 am:

Uh, the original Hyatt pinion bearing is a problem in these days mainly because new Hyatts aren't available, neither are 1920-27 style pinion spools. The spools wear oval and the Hyatt rollers wear conical - and then the cage tends to loosen up, fastening up the destruction process. The reason for the failed inner sleeve could as well be a worn Hyatt roller breaking and destroying the rest of the bearing..

Fun Projects or Model T Ranch bearings are the way to go if you haven't got a stash of NOS parts like Larry :-)


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Glen Chaffin on Sunday, December 03, 2017 - 01:28 pm:

Larry, Yes that suggestion is in the book. Glen

Steve, The 2596 D/S sleeve is very hard. At least C50. That is why it is imperative that it be installed correctly. It must be tight on the drive shaft and the keyways of the sleeve and drive shaft must be properly alligned. A fractured drive shaft sleeve due to an improperly installed drive shaft key has been the cause of many sleeve and bearing failures. We also manufacture our own modern bearing spool assemblies. they are much easier to install.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Steve Tomaso - Longbranch,WA on Sunday, December 03, 2017 - 03:13 pm:

Thanks for chiming in on this subject, Glen.

I happen to have the luxury of a small stash of NOS d.s. roller bearings, some excellent used ones and a small quantity of NOS inner sleeves which is what I've installed in my own T's. I've also installed plenty of the repro inner sleeves for customers without incident but then I also have all the correct & necessary Stevens & KRW tools (and knowledge) to do the proper procedure !


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Don - Conroe, TX on Saturday, December 16, 2017 - 09:50 pm:

I just committed to buy a nice set of wood wheels, rims, etc for my 24 so the budget is a bit shot for a while.

So it looks like I may just rebuild the stock axle for now. I'm assuming that will be a lot cheaper than building a Ruckstell.

I'll start a piggybank for a Ruckstell and will make it my project for 2019.


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