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 Post subject: Big Confusing Problem
PostPosted: Sun Apr 26, 2015 8:16 pm 
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Location: Cecil, PA - About 25 miles south of Pittsburgh
Year and Trim: 1988 Buick Lesabre T-type and 1997 Riviera
Hey guys,

I don't usually like to make many posts (clutter) but I do actually have a problem this time, and I need experts. For those who don't know I swapped a Series I L67 and 4T60E-HD into my Lesabre T-type. I accidentally ripped the boot on the brand new axle I had purchased for the swap, and the grease finally leaked out and went bad after 3 years. I replaced it a few weeks ago and through an unfortunate event while installing it, I ripped the boot on the new axle again. Fine. My fault, I'll drive it until it breaks and the grease gets flung everywhere. Well it did that in less than 40 miles, and did something I've never seen before.
Image

Image

It appears to have collapsed and gotten twisted somehow! How in the heck does that even happen? I took the clamp off and it REALLY WAS twisted around. I don't get that.

So I ordered a new axle since I did technically screw up the replacement. 20 miles later, same *dang* thing. I did not rip the boot installing it this time, but it got twisted around and ripped itself in half. (the regular hose clamp was an afterthought by me which is another story, but still functioned the same)
Image

Image


How on this green earth does something like this even happen? And two axles in a row? Bad manufacture? The axle did not seem over extended to me at any point. I'm at a loss, or maybe I"m not thinking clearly. The axle I used is for a '95 SSEi - I have the 4t60E-HD on the H-body platform, so by the book it's correct.

Thank you everyone.

EDIT: I see replacement boots are available. Is it worth trying one of those? There's a couple brands available (Moog, Dorman, Raybestos).

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1997 Buick Riviera - 102,000 miles : Series II L67/4T65E-HD : Intense intake : Ported S/C outlet : Ported LIM : Yella Terra 1.8 Ratio Rockers : LS7 Lifters : PLOG : Hogan Downpipe : INTENSE 3.5" MPS : 180 degree thermostat : AL104's : AC Delco 8mm wires : Shift Kit : STS strut tower brace : Custom Rear Strut Brace : F41 Sway Bars : Monroe HD rear air shocks : HD sway bar links : DHP Tune :
1988 Buick Lesabre T-type - 127,000 miles : Series I L67 : 4T60E-HD : AL 104's : 180 degree thermostat : '97+ Ignition Coils : Intense FWI : Walbro 255 : 2.5" Stainless Exhaust : Flowmaster 40 Series : STB : 'Caddy' braces : hood louvers: Karma Kustoms Ported M62 : Non-walled LIM : YT 1.8:1 rockers : LS7 Lifters : 2.4" S/C pulley : Custom PCV Oil bypass : B&M Trans Cooler : Sinister Tune

I also run the Buick Lesabre T-type Registry


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 26, 2015 9:04 pm 
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Well that's pretty spooky.

How close is that boot to the frame? Looks like it's a pretty small gap from this angle.

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 26, 2015 9:07 pm 
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Location: Cecil, PA - About 25 miles south of Pittsburgh
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Once the car is on the ground it's actually about 1/2" at the closest possible point. I actually did think of that but there is no evidence of rubbing on that largest part of the boot.

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1997 Buick Riviera - 102,000 miles : Series II L67/4T65E-HD : Intense intake : Ported S/C outlet : Ported LIM : Yella Terra 1.8 Ratio Rockers : LS7 Lifters : PLOG : Hogan Downpipe : INTENSE 3.5" MPS : 180 degree thermostat : AL104's : AC Delco 8mm wires : Shift Kit : STS strut tower brace : Custom Rear Strut Brace : F41 Sway Bars : Monroe HD rear air shocks : HD sway bar links : DHP Tune :
1988 Buick Lesabre T-type - 127,000 miles : Series I L67 : 4T60E-HD : AL 104's : 180 degree thermostat : '97+ Ignition Coils : Intense FWI : Walbro 255 : 2.5" Stainless Exhaust : Flowmaster 40 Series : STB : 'Caddy' braces : hood louvers: Karma Kustoms Ported M62 : Non-walled LIM : YT 1.8:1 rockers : LS7 Lifters : 2.4" S/C pulley : Custom PCV Oil bypass : B&M Trans Cooler : Sinister Tune

I also run the Buick Lesabre T-type Registry


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 26, 2015 9:30 pm 
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That's the only thing I can think of right now at least. I know the HD axles have larger tripods inside the boot so if there's a chance you didn't have an HD axle the first time, then it's possible that it never happened before because of that.

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2009 Chevy Silverado 2500HD crew cab, 6.0, Z71. The project mover.
1999 Buick Regal GS 3.4" pulley,SLP headers, fwi, pnp, gemini chain w/ other trans mods, 12" brakes, GR2's, STB's, 34mm front sway bar; The Summer DD
1982 Pontiac Grand Prix L36 and an hx35 turbo; It's pretty quick Mod list here


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 26, 2015 9:40 pm 
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I could go on and on about the trouble I've had with aftermarket axles on my i30. A lot of it has to do with the ride height but at the same height, I've had axles last 15k without issue and others last 50 miles. Same company even. Aftermarket axles in general are a crap shoot. I've seen exactly this happen in under 100 miles in one case too..

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 26, 2015 10:55 pm 
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Location: Cecil, PA - About 25 miles south of Pittsburgh
Year and Trim: 1988 Buick Lesabre T-type and 1997 Riviera
I actually have read a lot about your i30 axle problems...that's so frustrating.

I have my 'original' axle, the replacement, then the newest one. I'm going to check measurements on everything when I'm off this week and try to find the best combination of everything based on fit. For fun, I have a Dorman boot kit coming to replace the grease and possibly get to the bottom of this issue. Opinions?

Both of the new axles aren't actually broken, just the boot got screwy. I have a suspicion the first replacement has a longer shaft, based on eyeing them up before installation.

_________________
1997 Buick Riviera - 102,000 miles : Series II L67/4T65E-HD : Intense intake : Ported S/C outlet : Ported LIM : Yella Terra 1.8 Ratio Rockers : LS7 Lifters : PLOG : Hogan Downpipe : INTENSE 3.5" MPS : 180 degree thermostat : AL104's : AC Delco 8mm wires : Shift Kit : STS strut tower brace : Custom Rear Strut Brace : F41 Sway Bars : Monroe HD rear air shocks : HD sway bar links : DHP Tune :
1988 Buick Lesabre T-type - 127,000 miles : Series I L67 : 4T60E-HD : AL 104's : 180 degree thermostat : '97+ Ignition Coils : Intense FWI : Walbro 255 : 2.5" Stainless Exhaust : Flowmaster 40 Series : STB : 'Caddy' braces : hood louvers: Karma Kustoms Ported M62 : Non-walled LIM : YT 1.8:1 rockers : LS7 Lifters : 2.4" S/C pulley : Custom PCV Oil bypass : B&M Trans Cooler : Sinister Tune

I also run the Buick Lesabre T-type Registry


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 27, 2015 1:10 pm 
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Location: Dearborn, MI
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When I did the swap to my '86, I had issues with the axle boot impacting the frame under load, and of course that led to the OE boot (thermoplastic) scraping through after kicking the clamp off several times. I re-booted it, but because the replacement was neoprene when the clip would hit the frame it ended up tearing. That's when I compared it to a how the L67 sits in the subframe and how mine was. There should be a solid 1" of gap to the frame.

The OE dogbone is too short for the old subframe. I ended up modifying a 440 mount to fit the 4t65 at that corner, other people have used shorter dogbone mounts.

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I don't know how much boost it takes to blow the tires off. But I know how much I'm going to use!
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Runs:
'93 Pontiac Bonneville SSEi - Twincharged, manual, racecar! Build thread
'97 Chevy Camaro - 3800, T5, T-tops, my DD
'05 Cadillac STS - V8, AWD, her DD
'89 Buick LeSabre Limited - winter DD
'84 GMC Sierra Classic - Twin turbo 3800
'97 Buick LeSabre - L67 project
'92 Pontiac Bonneville SSE future project

Doesn't run:
'87 Buick LeSabre T-type - future victim
'67 Buick LeSabre - future victim


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 28, 2015 10:46 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 29, 2008 7:43 pm
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Location: Cecil, PA - About 25 miles south of Pittsburgh
Year and Trim: 1988 Buick Lesabre T-type and 1997 Riviera
Thank you for the info Matt. You don't think the 4T60E-HD could be slightly different and possibly be closer to the frame? Either way, I have some adjustment on the frame side of the dogbone mount bracket that could raise it about 1/2" more, which would end up close to an inch in the end.

I'm going to poke around with it more tomorrow, but I noticed the tripod on my original axle is nice and tight and the tripod on the 1st replacement is a little loose along the shaft, like the retaining clips aren't holding it tight enough. Another thing is the bearings on the original are bigger than the replacement ones. Length is identical (compressed).

I'm going to get the car on my lift and get all 3 axles in there and take a bunch of pics, and compare angles and lengths at different angles of steering and whatever I can see. My thought is the tripod isn't holding still in both new replacements and allowing the tripod to turn AROUND the axle shaft at extreme loads or angles.

_________________
1997 Buick Riviera - 102,000 miles : Series II L67/4T65E-HD : Intense intake : Ported S/C outlet : Ported LIM : Yella Terra 1.8 Ratio Rockers : LS7 Lifters : PLOG : Hogan Downpipe : INTENSE 3.5" MPS : 180 degree thermostat : AL104's : AC Delco 8mm wires : Shift Kit : STS strut tower brace : Custom Rear Strut Brace : F41 Sway Bars : Monroe HD rear air shocks : HD sway bar links : DHP Tune :
1988 Buick Lesabre T-type - 127,000 miles : Series I L67 : 4T60E-HD : AL 104's : 180 degree thermostat : '97+ Ignition Coils : Intense FWI : Walbro 255 : 2.5" Stainless Exhaust : Flowmaster 40 Series : STB : 'Caddy' braces : hood louvers: Karma Kustoms Ported M62 : Non-walled LIM : YT 1.8:1 rockers : LS7 Lifters : 2.4" S/C pulley : Custom PCV Oil bypass : B&M Trans Cooler : Sinister Tune

I also run the Buick Lesabre T-type Registry


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 28, 2015 11:43 pm 
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Joined: Tue Aug 25, 2009 8:32 pm
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Location: Dearborn, MI
Year and Trim: '93 SSEi
'05 STS-4
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'97 LeSabre
I would just re-boot the original axle instead of messing with the replacements.

The pre-L27 motors physically sat lower in the engine bay but the 440 tail end is about 3 inches shorter than the 4t60+, and the inner tripod was smaller, so the axle boot was nowhere near the subframe.

So you could have extra play in the replacement axles, or maybe one of the mounts has developed some extra movement over time, I think getting proper clearance to the subframe will take care of the issue.

_________________
I don't know how much boost it takes to blow the tires off. But I know how much I'm going to use!
Image

Runs:
'93 Pontiac Bonneville SSEi - Twincharged, manual, racecar! Build thread
'97 Chevy Camaro - 3800, T5, T-tops, my DD
'05 Cadillac STS - V8, AWD, her DD
'89 Buick LeSabre Limited - winter DD
'84 GMC Sierra Classic - Twin turbo 3800
'97 Buick LeSabre - L67 project
'92 Pontiac Bonneville SSE future project

Doesn't run:
'87 Buick LeSabre T-type - future victim
'67 Buick LeSabre - future victim


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 29, 2015 3:49 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 29, 2008 7:43 pm
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Location: Cecil, PA - About 25 miles south of Pittsburgh
Year and Trim: 1988 Buick Lesabre T-type and 1997 Riviera
Yes I looked back at my swap pictures and noticed the same thing with the original 440-T4/subframe. Big difference.

So I did some inspection and tests today. I tried to be a scientific as possible. Some pics:

This is the last replacement axle/joint without the boot in the way. Just to show where the tripod is hanging out in relation to it's housing. It's right in the middle. This is with the car in the air, suspension unloaded.
Image

Now this is the wheel turned all the way to the right, where I would assume the biggest change if that axle would move in or out. No change at all, and nothing moved in the least when I spun the axle. Wheel turned left was the same. Suspension still unloaded.
Image


This is the car on the ground at ride height (obviously the wheel was off, I had the suspension sitting on a block to achieve proper height) . Left or right turn, nothing was stressed and the joint did not move in or out, even with multiple revolutions. the axle was nice and perpendicular or parallel to everything, so I think geometry is out of the picture now as a failure factor.
Image



So I went to the table and had a stab at removing the tripods of the 2nd replacement and my original. My original was tight, the clips were difficult to remove and I expected that. No play laterally or longitudinally on the splines. The tripod slid off with some encouragement from a small rubber mallet.
Image

The replacement axle had what I would consider inexcusable play on the splines. It moved along the axle shaft and just ever so slightly between splines. The clips came off VERY easily  and the tripod basiclaly fell off. Crappy tolerances from the factory is my conclusion.

Also of note, the bearings in my original are HUGE compared to the replacement axle. I could not see any real wear on either axle or joint or housing from either axle. I think the answer is to re-boot the original axle as stated, shove some new grease in there and be on my way.

Opinions?

_________________
1997 Buick Riviera - 102,000 miles : Series II L67/4T65E-HD : Intense intake : Ported S/C outlet : Ported LIM : Yella Terra 1.8 Ratio Rockers : LS7 Lifters : PLOG : Hogan Downpipe : INTENSE 3.5" MPS : 180 degree thermostat : AL104's : AC Delco 8mm wires : Shift Kit : STS strut tower brace : Custom Rear Strut Brace : F41 Sway Bars : Monroe HD rear air shocks : HD sway bar links : DHP Tune :
1988 Buick Lesabre T-type - 127,000 miles : Series I L67 : 4T60E-HD : AL 104's : 180 degree thermostat : '97+ Ignition Coils : Intense FWI : Walbro 255 : 2.5" Stainless Exhaust : Flowmaster 40 Series : STB : 'Caddy' braces : hood louvers: Karma Kustoms Ported M62 : Non-walled LIM : YT 1.8:1 rockers : LS7 Lifters : 2.4" S/C pulley : Custom PCV Oil bypass : B&M Trans Cooler : Sinister Tune

I also run the Buick Lesabre T-type Registry


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 29, 2015 9:54 pm 
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Location: Cecil, PA - About 25 miles south of Pittsburgh
Year and Trim: 1988 Buick Lesabre T-type and 1997 Riviera
Alright...the replacement boot kit was a bust, and now I have no good axles to use because of the stupid clamps you have to use and I screwed them all up.

Anyway, out of desparation I ordered an axle for tomorrow morning from Advance from some brand I've never heard of. If this one craps the bed then at least it's a local purchase.

I did some more research for just-in-case and a '95 Riviera axle is about an inch longer than a Bonneville axle and has the same splines.

_________________
1997 Buick Riviera - 102,000 miles : Series II L67/4T65E-HD : Intense intake : Ported S/C outlet : Ported LIM : Yella Terra 1.8 Ratio Rockers : LS7 Lifters : PLOG : Hogan Downpipe : INTENSE 3.5" MPS : 180 degree thermostat : AL104's : AC Delco 8mm wires : Shift Kit : STS strut tower brace : Custom Rear Strut Brace : F41 Sway Bars : Monroe HD rear air shocks : HD sway bar links : DHP Tune :
1988 Buick Lesabre T-type - 127,000 miles : Series I L67 : 4T60E-HD : AL 104's : 180 degree thermostat : '97+ Ignition Coils : Intense FWI : Walbro 255 : 2.5" Stainless Exhaust : Flowmaster 40 Series : STB : 'Caddy' braces : hood louvers: Karma Kustoms Ported M62 : Non-walled LIM : YT 1.8:1 rockers : LS7 Lifters : 2.4" S/C pulley : Custom PCV Oil bypass : B&M Trans Cooler : Sinister Tune

I also run the Buick Lesabre T-type Registry


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 29, 2015 11:47 pm 
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Joined: Tue Aug 25, 2009 8:32 pm
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Location: Dearborn, MI
Year and Trim: '93 SSEi
'05 STS-4
'97 Camaro
'97 LeSabre
Detroit Axle was able to supply a boot for me, along with a few sets of extra boot clamps, not sure if there's a similar place near you though. Somewhere on the forum here I posted the part number for the boot they had, but I wasn't able to cross-reference it or find it online anywhere, seems to be not available through box stores.

Edit: (Enkidu P/N) 86448C is the boot I had to get that fit my '98 inner HD axle tripod. I think it's the same as the series 1 axle boots, but I've never measured them.

_________________
I don't know how much boost it takes to blow the tires off. But I know how much I'm going to use!
Image

Runs:
'93 Pontiac Bonneville SSEi - Twincharged, manual, racecar! Build thread
'97 Chevy Camaro - 3800, T5, T-tops, my DD
'05 Cadillac STS - V8, AWD, her DD
'89 Buick LeSabre Limited - winter DD
'84 GMC Sierra Classic - Twin turbo 3800
'97 Buick LeSabre - L67 project
'92 Pontiac Bonneville SSE future project

Doesn't run:
'87 Buick LeSabre T-type - future victim
'67 Buick LeSabre - future victim


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 30, 2015 10:27 am 
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Location: Cecil, PA - About 25 miles south of Pittsburgh
Year and Trim: 1988 Buick Lesabre T-type and 1997 Riviera
After I read your post Matt I went back and measured a spare axle I have for my Riviera, and the boots appear to be the same so that's something to keep in mind. I'll save that part number just in case!

So, for today...the axle I ordered from Advance is actually a rebuilt axle, which is good. Looks like a clean original SSEi axle with new firmer, thicker boots and new grease.

I installed it in just a few minutes this morning after double checking the spline count and length. It was identical to my original and it went right in with little effort, and everything fell back together nicely. Took it on a test drive and it doesnt seem to be over-extending or binding or anything like that.

One thing I did notice is the car seems to be putting more power to the ground now from a stop. Those other two replacement axles really must have been doing a number on themselves. One thing I was always curious about, does the 4T60/4T65 have a particular biased drive wheel, if that makes sense?

Conclusion - buy rebuilt axles, not new. No question. I will update in a few weeks and report how it's holding up!

_________________
1997 Buick Riviera - 102,000 miles : Series II L67/4T65E-HD : Intense intake : Ported S/C outlet : Ported LIM : Yella Terra 1.8 Ratio Rockers : LS7 Lifters : PLOG : Hogan Downpipe : INTENSE 3.5" MPS : 180 degree thermostat : AL104's : AC Delco 8mm wires : Shift Kit : STS strut tower brace : Custom Rear Strut Brace : F41 Sway Bars : Monroe HD rear air shocks : HD sway bar links : DHP Tune :
1988 Buick Lesabre T-type - 127,000 miles : Series I L67 : 4T60E-HD : AL 104's : 180 degree thermostat : '97+ Ignition Coils : Intense FWI : Walbro 255 : 2.5" Stainless Exhaust : Flowmaster 40 Series : STB : 'Caddy' braces : hood louvers: Karma Kustoms Ported M62 : Non-walled LIM : YT 1.8:1 rockers : LS7 Lifters : 2.4" S/C pulley : Custom PCV Oil bypass : B&M Trans Cooler : Sinister Tune

I also run the Buick Lesabre T-type Registry


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 30, 2015 2:47 pm 
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Location: Dearborn, MI
Year and Trim: '93 SSEi
'05 STS-4
'97 Camaro
'97 LeSabre
There is a difference in angular deflection between the two wheels when power is applied, which is why you have torque steer. The left side axle + output shaft is physically further from the differential, so will allow more twist than the right side, which means that the right side torque applied vs time will ramp up faster than the left. However that's only for a short duration of time when you first apply power to the wheel, after the left side axle 'catches up' to the right there is no bias.

Of course this is sensitive to weight balance, weight transfer, which way you're steering the wheels, pavement conditions, sticking brakes, bad wheel bearings, alignment, etc.

_________________
I don't know how much boost it takes to blow the tires off. But I know how much I'm going to use!
Image

Runs:
'93 Pontiac Bonneville SSEi - Twincharged, manual, racecar! Build thread
'97 Chevy Camaro - 3800, T5, T-tops, my DD
'05 Cadillac STS - V8, AWD, her DD
'89 Buick LeSabre Limited - winter DD
'84 GMC Sierra Classic - Twin turbo 3800
'97 Buick LeSabre - L67 project
'92 Pontiac Bonneville SSE future project

Doesn't run:
'87 Buick LeSabre T-type - future victim
'67 Buick LeSabre - future victim


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PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2015 9:49 pm 
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Location: Cecil, PA - About 25 miles south of Pittsburgh
Year and Trim: 1988 Buick Lesabre T-type and 1997 Riviera
Thanks for the info, that makes a lot of sense. And sorry for the late reply lol.

The most recent axle I've put in has been doing good. Holding up fine, nothing has changed. I do notice something though, the same as my original. When making a right turn and applying any throttle, I feel what I can only describe as a 'grinding' in the steering wheel, or a vibrating maybe. The two replacements I had that were junk did not do this as much, but still did it. I noticed the compressed axle length was the same between them but the actual axle shaft was about 1/2" longer on the broken ones compared to the rebuilt one I bought and the original.

Looking at the joint inside the joint housing, the newest axle that has been holding up is slightly more extended (by about 1/2") than the junk replacement axles. The joint is still about 1" from the edge of the housing though. Would this be any reason for that feeling I'm feeling in the steering wheel? Is any of those making sense?

If this would be causing this, an axle for a '95 Riviera is about 1/2" longer compressed and will fit the trans and hub. Thoughts?

_________________
1997 Buick Riviera - 102,000 miles : Series II L67/4T65E-HD : Intense intake : Ported S/C outlet : Ported LIM : Yella Terra 1.8 Ratio Rockers : LS7 Lifters : PLOG : Hogan Downpipe : INTENSE 3.5" MPS : 180 degree thermostat : AL104's : AC Delco 8mm wires : Shift Kit : STS strut tower brace : Custom Rear Strut Brace : F41 Sway Bars : Monroe HD rear air shocks : HD sway bar links : DHP Tune :
1988 Buick Lesabre T-type - 127,000 miles : Series I L67 : 4T60E-HD : AL 104's : 180 degree thermostat : '97+ Ignition Coils : Intense FWI : Walbro 255 : 2.5" Stainless Exhaust : Flowmaster 40 Series : STB : 'Caddy' braces : hood louvers: Karma Kustoms Ported M62 : Non-walled LIM : YT 1.8:1 rockers : LS7 Lifters : 2.4" S/C pulley : Custom PCV Oil bypass : B&M Trans Cooler : Sinister Tune

I also run the Buick Lesabre T-type Registry


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PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2015 11:04 pm 
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Location: Dearborn, MI
Year and Trim: '93 SSEi
'05 STS-4
'97 Camaro
'97 LeSabre
In my experience, that hasn't been caused by the axle, but the first way to check that is to turn the wheel all the way to the right and jack up the side making the noise to see if you can pinpoint it. Have the wheel bearings been removed at any point? The bolts on them might be loose, or one of those might be going bad. If it was the axle it should do it in both directions.

That being said, I've given up on the chain store axles a long time ago due to odd noises or poor build quality, I'd rather pull and reboot a junkyard axle. Another option is driveshaftshop.com; but you end up paying more.

_________________
I don't know how much boost it takes to blow the tires off. But I know how much I'm going to use!
Image

Runs:
'93 Pontiac Bonneville SSEi - Twincharged, manual, racecar! Build thread
'97 Chevy Camaro - 3800, T5, T-tops, my DD
'05 Cadillac STS - V8, AWD, her DD
'89 Buick LeSabre Limited - winter DD
'84 GMC Sierra Classic - Twin turbo 3800
'97 Buick LeSabre - L67 project
'92 Pontiac Bonneville SSE future project

Doesn't run:
'87 Buick LeSabre T-type - future victim
'67 Buick LeSabre - future victim


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