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rear axle bearing Dana44

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  • Rear Axle: rear axle bearing Dana44

    I just installed a new axle and bearing in my Dana 44 on the passenger side. My question is should the cup be protruding out of the housing? Mine is out about about an eighth to a quarter of an inch. The axle seems to be seated the whole way in the differential. The shims and gasket take up the space when the backing plate is installed, but there is no end play. I reinstalled the shims that were installed previously.

  • #2
    Be sure the outer race is pressed on properly. 1/8" seems like a lot. You really do not want all that pressure on the bearing--it will not last very long at all. I believe the end play should be 0.001 to 0.005". Shim 'til you have it. Easiest way to check it is with a dial indicator. Twin traction axles have a thrust block which often falls out of place when you pull the axle. Shine a flashlight down the tube to see if it is laying loose in there . If it is, contact me and I'll tell you how to put it back easily. SI probably has shims. (You can also check to see how much shim you need is with a straight edge laid across the bearing, measure the distance between the straight edge and the axle flange. So, for example, if you measure 0.030", you would need 0.031 to 0.035" shims to give the required end play. ( You can never -almost- use the same shims after replacing the bearing)

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    • #3
      Thank you for your reply. Could it be that the bearing is on to far holding the axle out to far and the bearing bottoming out on the housing?

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      • #4
        I was thinking the bearing not being pressed onto the axle enough... ?

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        • #5
          Way back when a veteran Studebaker mechanic told me β€œ Put shims on to the point of being flush with the bearing, and then add another .010” shim.” Meaning that the .010 would take in to account making the loose shim pack tight, and then allow the necessary end play. This mechanic worked for Marks Motors Studebaker in Portland, and they were a well established Studebaker dealer.

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          • #6
            I put it back together and the tire seems to be a bit closer to the fender than the other side. The backing plate is tight up against the shims and everything is seated against the axle housing flange. I pulled the plug where the grease fitting goes to grease the bearing, how much of the bearing should you be able to see? I'll have to get a dail indicator and check the end play.

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            • #7
              In my Studebaker experience it’s not unusual for one rear tire to run a bit closer to the fender. Any idea if it was that way prior to your work?

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              • #8
                I unfortunately didn't pay any attention to that before I started. Everything looks good except for that. The drum looks even and spaced on the backing plate the same as the other side. I did pull the plug where the grease fitting goes in and could see the back side of the bearing. I'll have to pull the other side to see if it looks the same. Thank you for your reply.

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                • #9
                  I'm sure no one here can visualize .010 inch by eye. I do know that you'd like to be looser than tighter on the endplay..... I stand corrected on bearing placement on axle. A new axle will definitely change the endplay. What happens to the bearing / cup / differential when the endplay is .0000 inches ???

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                  • #10
                    I agree 100% I also agree a little looser is better. I would think the bearing would not last long if there was no end play and cause a catastrophic failure. I had this happen once while towing a car with an old pickup I had it was no fun.

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                    • #11
                      Do all Dana 44s have thrust blocks ? Mine is an open carrier.

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                      • #12
                        Yes, open diffs have a single block. This is what the ends of the axles butt up against. Twin traction diffs have a 2 piece affair that is connected by a roll pin.
                        Last edited by 64studeavanti; 04-12-2021, 11:29 AM.
                        78 Avanti RQB 2792
                        64 Avanti R1 R5408
                        63 Avanti R1 R4551
                        63 Avanti R1 R2281
                        62 GT Hawk V15949
                        56 GH 6032504
                        56 GH 6032588
                        55 Speedster 7160047
                        55 Speedster 7165279

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Is it on the passenger side?

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                          • #14
                            If you mean the thrust blocks, they are in the center between the axle ends. If you have a parts book, you can easily see how it works.
                            78 Avanti RQB 2792
                            64 Avanti R1 R5408
                            63 Avanti R1 R4551
                            63 Avanti R1 R2281
                            62 GT Hawk V15949
                            56 GH 6032504
                            56 GH 6032588
                            55 Speedster 7160047
                            55 Speedster 7165279

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              After looking at the parts breakdown on a vendor site is that the piece that goes on the shaft for the pinion gears with the oblong hole in it? There is no way for it to fall off?
                              Last edited by NormK; 04-12-2021, 12:50 PM.

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