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Post Info TOPIC: Just a little advice... check your rear axle bearings!


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Just a little advice... check your rear axle bearings!


Oops... Rear axle shaft broke clean at the bearing, probably due to the latter failing.

By chance, car was slowing down on a small residential street. No damage to the body, but brake shoes and springs, lines, etc. are toast.

 

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Poncho Master!

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Thats terrible. Glad to hear it wasnt worse and everyone okay. Was there any warning? Noise?

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A Poncho Legend!

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Oh wow, SO lucky it's not damaged!

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1966 Strato Chief 2 door sedan 283 "survivor"


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Urban_suburban wrote:

Thats terrible. Glad to hear it wasnt worse and everyone okay. Was there any warning? Noise?


 

 

Just a few seconds beforehand, yes.. Grinding and wobbling, but it happened all very quickly, and I gotta say, quite unexpectedly. The car was behaving perfectly without any warning sign whatsoever up to just a few seconds before the axle failed.



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Poncho Master!

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Good thing you weren't on the highway...

So the bearing seized?



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Poncho Master!

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Its awful dry there, the bearing is oiled from the rear end side, should there not be gear oil running out on the ground?

It looks fairly dry on the brake side too, so the bearing was not leaking. Was the rear end full of gear oil?

You were real lucky you had so little damage to the body.

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63 Pariesienne sport coupe (The Big GTO), black, maroon interior, 409 4 speed; former owner of a 59 El Camino, 63 Corvette SWC, 62 Chev Bel Air SC. Parting out a 63 Parisienne convertible.

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Canadian Poncho Superstar!

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Whew, lucky. I once lost a wheel on the 401 @ 90 kph (Olds Omega) ... not pretty.



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'64 Parisienne CS "barn find" - last on the road in '86 ... Owner Protection Plan booklet, original paint, original near-mint aqua interior, original aqua GM floor mats, original 283, factory posi, and original rust.



Uber Guru

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 Looking at that picture more closely,  I would say that the axle was actually fractured for awhile. You can see were the last little bit of metal was actually broken off of the axle whereas the rest of the axle looks dirty or old in comparison. What does the stud end look like?

 

ACAAEE99-FF02-4E44-9555-00E213CA3E67.png

 



-- Edited by 67Poncho on Thursday 6th of September 2018 11:25:55 AM

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I agree.  Looks like a fatigue crack that had propagated over a long period of time - most likely from long before you bought it.

I'm not sure you can attribute that to the bearing, but would have to see all the parts to understand better.  It's quite possible that the axle was nicked at some point (during a previous repair?), causing a stress riser (localized stress concentration), from which a crack could propagate, cracking little by little with each cycle (rotation) or with reversing axial loads (cornering).  As the axle fatigues, the broken surfaces will rub against each other, creating a surface that looks similar to sand on a beach from the waves going over it.  Also, dirt, grime, or rust often makes its way into the crack creating a weathered surface next to the shiny, fresh broken surface that 67 Poncho pointed out.

Just a guess - I personally haven't seen one quite like this before, but maybe it was a well-known issue 50 years ago?  Anybody seen this before?



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A Poncho Legend!

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David mentioned that Rock Auto actually has replacement axles in stock! He is replacing both and they should arrive tomorrow.

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Yep, brand spanking new axles should be here tomorrow. I will keep the board posted on the repair and the final analysis of what happened. I believe you guy might be right and that the failure might not be bearing related after all.

 

 

 



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In the early 70s I worked in a garage and the boss had a 62 safari wagon with a 348 and a three speed. For the winter he had a rear diff with the spider gears welded to lock the rearend. The axle broke one day in the same spot as the picture here when he got it stuck.

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Well, a couple of thousand bucks later, she's back on the road and riding better than ever.

It cost that much, because I have taken this opportunity to do a bit more than just change the rear axle.

I changed both rear axles, wheel studs, bearings and seals. Changed the rear brakes shoes, rear shocks (front ones were already new), carrier bearing, transmission support and had the drive shaft realigned and balanced.

All in all, a lot of little improvements so that this Parisienne (I now call her Stella, by the way) gives me safe and reliable driving pleasure for years to come.





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if you are going to go it you may as well do it right!

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That's my motto.

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