How to: Vacuum Disco Elimination, Axle Tube Sleeve Fix, ubolt Eliminator - 56K beware - JeepForum.com
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Unread 06-10-2009, 06:07 PM   #1
Joe Dillard
Electric Chair Operator
1991 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: King George, VA
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How to: Vacuum Disco Elimination, Axle Tube Sleeve Fix, ubolt Eliminator - 56K beware

Last year while wheelin’ in Colorado with some friends, I developed a serious crack underneath my passenger side SOA perch. The problem didn’t surface till the next day while I was in Moab doing a relatively easy trail. All the sudden my front axle started making some interesting noises, and looked as if I had balljoint issues at first glance. So Randy (Rock_Worm) and I got out to take a look. Next thing I know, Randy say’s something to the effect – hey Joe, I think I’ve found the problem”.

Anyway, we did a trail repair & then towed it back to our campsite in Moab. The following day, Randy, Larry & I welded it back up as a temporary fix so that we could continue wheelin’ for the next week. It has held up fine ever since & has several other trail runs on it – but I wanted a more permanent fix. So, this is where my “Disco Elimination & Axle Tube Sleeve Fix and ubolt eliminator” begins.

Here’s what the initial crack looked like:

Face of the axle tube:



View from underneath:



View from the back:



So, back at my campsite, I borrowed a friend of mine’s Lincoln MIG welder and we cleaned up the crack and welded it back as best we could.

My friend Larry, from WA, helping do some welding:



Beginnings of the repair:



Okay, now that I’ve explained how my troubles started – here’s what I’ve done as a more permanent fix. Yea, it’s a HPD30 and some may say; “why polish it?” This fix cost me a grand total of ~$30.00 for the 3”x.250” DOM, including hardware. I already had everything else laying around my garage.

I had a pair of perches, so I got some 3”x.250” DOM and started doing some measuring.


I secured the Jeep on jack stands & pulled my tire, then started to remove the Warn hubs:




Then I removed the Warn spindle & Vanco calipers and rotor:



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Unread 06-10-2009, 06:14 PM   #2
Joe Dillard
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1991 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: King George, VA
Posts: 12,393
Next was to remove the Warn passenger side axle shaft:


Remove the steering links from my MORE steering bracket:



Remove & tape up the axle breather & ARB fitting:



Then the drive shaft and secure it out of the way:



Next up was to remove the ubolts & spring plates:



HPD30 removed. You’ll notice I didn’t bother removing the brake rotor, hub spindle etc from the driver side since there was no need.



Now it’s time to start chopping up the disco housing & completely remove it so I could sleeve the tube with the DOM.

I opened up the vacuum disco block-off plate and stuffed a rag in it so that debris wouldn’t enter the tube as I cut portions of the tube off:



As you’ll notice here – I cut off the tube close to the axle perch so I could take advantage of as much of the axle tube as possible when I sleeve it.



Here’s the outer portion of it that I’ll reuse. Notice how I marked the tube so that when I reattach it – my caster should be correct:



Next up, I opened up the disco housing block-off plate & move my rag to the inside of where I’d be making my second cut.



Vacuum disco gone:

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Unread 06-10-2009, 06:16 PM   #3
Joe Dillard
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1991 YJ Wrangler 
 
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Location: King George, VA
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No, I’m not a dentist there are some deburring tools I use to help remove those nasty/pesky burrs after cutting:



Then I removed the old RE axle tube shock mount:



Cleaned up the axle tubes with a flap disc:




Test fit of the new sleeve, perch & rechecking castor with my angle finder:



I drilled some holes in the new sleeve so I could plug-weld it in place:



Test fit & checking castor:



Marking the new spring perch for welding:



Fabricating new spring plate and ubolt eliminator plate:

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Unread 06-10-2009, 06:17 PM   #4
Joe Dillard
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1991 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: King George, VA
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Since I did a 1” wheelbase stretch some time ago – I needed to drill an offset hole in my spring perch so the centerpin has an exit:



Measure twice – drill once



Ubolt eliminator test fit:



Plug welds complete & beginnings of the sleeve welded:



Spring perch & ubolt eliminator tact welded & angle rechecked:



Starting to paint/reassembly & getting ready for final welding:





Perch & new lower shock tabs welded:

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Unread 06-10-2009, 06:18 PM   #5
Joe Dillard
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1991 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: King George, VA
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Nothing ever goes perfectly – right?

I checked the tube and noticed that the rag I put in it earlier was accidentally left inside. No big deal, I took a broomstick handle & retrieved it:



That’s better. Notice the ARB crosspin:



On to the reassembly. Brakes, steering, spindle, shocks, check:





Drive shaft, breather ARB – check:




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Unread 06-10-2009, 06:20 PM   #6
Joe Dillard
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Hubs & tires, check:




Well, that’s about it. This is just the first fitting. I’ll be changing this design in the future, but you get the idea as to why & how I did it.
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Unread 06-10-2009, 07:12 PM   #7
jgorm
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nice fab work!
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Unread 06-10-2009, 09:11 PM   #8
Death_Valley_TJ
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Nice job!!
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Unread 06-10-2009, 09:18 PM   #9
yjcrawler
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great job. i need to get the funds up to do this soon.
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Unread 06-11-2009, 09:43 AM   #10
Jerry Bransford
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Nice repair and writeup Joe, we had a guy break his axle tube the same way on my last run. I hope I'm not next.
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Unread 06-11-2009, 10:17 AM   #11
ritjobbie
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WOW. Just wow.
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Unread 06-12-2009, 01:46 AM   #12
Greg_Volkman
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just curios as to why you attribute the break to the disco cast iron mount when the break occurred on the tube, and not at the mount?
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Unread 06-12-2009, 08:24 AM   #13
Joe Dillard
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Greg,

I'm not sure what I may have said to give you that impression. Could you point me to where I indicated or implied that? Thanks.

By completely removing the vacuum disco housing (which I have not needed ever since I installed the Warn hub kit and 1 piece Warn inner ~5-6 years ago) it sure makes it far easier to sleeve the axle tube with it completely gone.

IIRC, the sleeve ended up being ~21.25" in length, and since I left a few inches of the original tube at the inner C and differential, this made for sleeving it fairly easy.

Thanks everybody for the feedback.
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Unread 06-29-2009, 02:40 PM   #14
skullver
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nice fab work!

Are you using grade 5 hardware for your u-bolt eliminator? I am looking into helping a buddy with his dana 30 and as it is trussed along the bottom, there is no room for u-bolts(making room could prove to be very labor intensive). Upon looking into it I have heard there are some issues with the hardware stretching/loosening. A google search for "ubolt eliminator" brought up this thread so thought I would get your thoughts/experiences. What size hardware are you using?
THANKS!
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Unread 06-30-2009, 01:06 AM   #15
Joe Dillard
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Location: King George, VA
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The initial hardware was not up to my standards, it was mearly for fit. It's now grade 8 stuff.
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