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Thread: Front Driveshaft Removal

  1. #1
    Molon Labe Stien's Avatar
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    Default Front Driveshaft Removal

    I need to remove the front driveshaft from my 2003 Jeep Rubicon. It looks simple, but so far everything that "looks simple" isn't. I just need step by step directions on how to do it. I don't want to pull a bunch of crap apart again and realize that I have to drive back down to the autoparts store to get what I need.

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    Senior Member SavageSun4x4's Avatar
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    When you say you want to pull the front DS, are you saying the complete DS or do you just need to get the components out for a rebuild????

    Its easy but by the same token a big task. If you chose not to pull the trans skid then you will need some long extensions to get at the bolts. I just always find it simpler to drop the skid so I can more easily get at the bolts that hold it at the transfer case...that is just me. To that some simple hand tools and a small floor jack with a piece of wood to lift the rear of the trans, hold it up and move it so as you can put it all back together. There are 4 small bolts that hold the trans mount in, undo them first then the side bolts on the skid that go into the frame. Leave 1 per side then using the jack hold the trans in place and remove the skid. Its a one man job and unless you rig is dirty and hard to work on from that stand point you can do this in about an hour or so, no special tools other than a ratchet wrench and some metric sockets.

    The is a no big deal be it OEM or after market skid removal.
    Don

    '15 Jeep Unlimited Rubicon Hard Rock...OLD SCHOOL 6 Spd Manual Trans
    17 Oaks Ranch Companies LLC

    www.savagesun4x4.com

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    Land Squid Jeffb_79's Avatar
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    4 bolts on each end.
    Un-bolt.
    Yank out.

  4. #4
    Oh, the possibilities! njmmarines's Avatar
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    Jeffb_79 nailed the process right on the head!

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    Angry Ginger txapacheguy's Avatar
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    An 8mm combination wrench and maybe a flashlight or drop light is the only tool you need for my 2001 TJ. You should consider taking a sharpie marker and marking the shaft and yokes to ensure it is clocked the same way on the pinion/t-case yoke when re-installed, but this is not completely necessary. I prefer to lift my driver's side front tire off the ground a bit to make the bolts on the forward portion of the shaft easier to access, but this is also not completely necessary. If you are performing maintenance that requires the t-case skid to be removed, it makes the drive shaft removal easier. In my opinion, pulling the skid plate solely for the drive shaft removal is completely unnecessary. Just out of curiosity, why are you having to remove your front drive shaft???
    "Mankind has a perfect record in aviation safety if you consider we have never left one up there"

    2001 TJ 4" lift, 35" Goodyear Wrangler MT/R's, HP D30/D44 with 4.88's, ARBs and chromolys, AA SYE, TW rear driveshaft, too much other junk to list here...

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    Molon Labe Stien's Avatar
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    Thanks for the input and it sounds like the process goes exactly how I thought it would. @txapacheguy, I am currently troubleshooting a really annoying noise that I am getting. It comes and goes while I am in 2WD and comes for and sticks around in 4WD. I have pretty much isolated it to the front driveshaft and am going to replace all the U-Joints to rule that out. Hopefully that takes care of the problem, if not I will rebuild the differentials and re gear it while I am at it.

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    Land Squid Jeffb_79's Avatar
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    Is it a squeaking problem?
    Do a google search on "angry sparrows".
    It could be your u joints, and if you're pulling the shaft out to service it you might as well replace them, but it's more than likely the centering ball.
    Once you pull the shaft out, you can drive around and make sure the noise goes away before beginning the work on the shaft.

    And here's a pretty good write up on overhauling your driveshafts.
    http://www.stu-offroad.com/axle/driv...iveshaft-5.htm

  8. #8
    Molon Labe Stien's Avatar
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    I wish I knew about the angry sparrows a long time ago... that was the problem. As soon as I pulled the driveshaft off, the ball joint started to squeek. I do plan on replaing the U-Joints while everything is off. Thanks for the link.

  9. #9
    Senior Member SavageSun4x4's Avatar
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    09062006037-5.jpg
    Quote Originally Posted by Stien View Post
    I wish I knew about the angry sparrows a long time ago... that was the problem. As soon as I pulled the driveshaft off, the ball joint started to squeek. I do plan on replaing the U-Joints while everything is off. Thanks for the link.
    While its not necessary to remove the skid, its so easy, why not and gives you ez access to the entire trans setup. You should also inspect your trans mount for shearing. They take a beating when using 4x4 and big tires. If you notice much movement in your shifter the mount my need to be replaced...its cheap.

    Inspect your bearing caps on your u joints for bright metal. pix/write up on DS replace here: http://www.savagesun4x4.com/enter/fa...l_rubicon.html

    You inspect the caps regularly you will SEE the u joint failure long before you hear it. When you hear it, its failed at that time...
    Don

    '15 Jeep Unlimited Rubicon Hard Rock...OLD SCHOOL 6 Spd Manual Trans
    17 Oaks Ranch Companies LLC

    www.savagesun4x4.com

  10. #10
    Molon Labe Stien's Avatar
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    I got everything figures out, but one small and simple problem is holding me up. I can not get the U joints out. I have soked them with WD40 and tried pressing them with my vise... any other tips?
    Life is tough. It is even tougher when you are stupid.
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