Moser 1-Piece Axle Installation Help -
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post #1 of 5 Old 08-10-2013, 10:56 AM Thread Starter
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1982 CJ7 
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Moser 1-Piece Axle Installation Help

I have an AMC-20 in my 83’ CJ-7, and I’m installing the Moser 1-piece axle kit due to an unusually welcome bearing failure in the OEM 2-piece axle which finally gave me a reason to upgrade. I read a lot of the related posts here and on other forums, but none seemed to describe the same issue I’m having below, and Moser doesn’t open till Monday so I thought I’d ask here.

The Moser directions say:

1.)Reuse or replace inner and outer seals as needed.

- I replaced the inner seal properly and after feeling around the back side of the seal, I’m confident that its evenly and securely up against the ridge in the tube where it belongs. (see pic below)

2.) With inner seal installed, install the bearing spacer ring into the housing end with the
OD ring (lip) toward the outside (smaller OD goes toward the seal). (See Figure C)

- This is where I’m less confident. This sounds like I should be able to just insert AND remove the spacer ring (without hammering it into place) into its designed/permanent location (with the diff side up against the inner seal, and the hub side “OD spacer lip” up against it’s intended ridge (picture below) in the housing tube in order to “test fit” the bearing protrusion distance (.020-.080).

See pic of the seal installed and an arrow pointing to where I think the inside lip of the bearing spacer wants to land. There's also a picture of the spacer and the bearing that came with the kit.

3.) Before installing it on the axle, test fit the bearing into the housing end. Make sure to
slide the bearing in as shown in Figure B with the larger lip on the inner race going in first.

- With the spacer out, the bearing itself will go in and out of the tube without a lot of effort and no hammering, but with the bearing spacer installed as far as it will go WITHOUT hammering, about half of the bearing remains outside the end of the tube surface when butted to the spacer. Therefore in order to properly test fit and measure bearing protrusion, I’d have to hammer home the spacer with more than love taps using the press “socket tool” I’m using to drive it and (previously) the inner seal in evenly.

Also, the housing tube appears to have a surface (red arrowed area in Fig “C” pic below) that might be very slightly “tapered inward” from the hub end in the area where the spacer is intended to live.

In short, I’m pretty sure that if I drive the bearing spacer in to see if I have the proper end clearance for the bearing, there’s no way it’s coming out without beating the hell out of it and the new seal. And if getting it out is anything like I experienced trying to get the OEM seal out, that challenge is to be avoided if at all possible.

4.) With the seal and bearing spacer ring all of the way in, the bearing should stick out
.020”-.080” from the housing end. (See Figure C) If it protrudes more
than .080”, remove the bearing spacer ring, then grind the bearing
spacer ring until the appropriate measurements are achieved.

- Again, I’m not getting this far because it seems like something’s just not right with this spacer “test fit” procedure.

The good news is that when I measure the tube space/distances available in the tube to accommodate the spacer AND bearing compared to the overall width of the combination of the actual bearing and spacer, it seems like its all going to be well within the acceptable (.020-.080) but that assumes I can get the spacer all the way to the seal. I'm also possibly assuming that grinding over 1/2 the spacer away isn't what is actually and typically necessary. The directions seem more like nominal grinding may be necessary, rather than half of the spacer.

I’m just reluctant to start hammering it in if it’s not right, because if it isn’t, I know I’m going to destroy the seal and the spacer trying to get it back out.

So, I don’t see how there’s any test fitting that doesn’t include damaging parts if they have to come out for grinding (bearing spacer) etc. as indicated in the directions.

There's also a pic of the failed bearing on the OEM 2-piece axle. The symptom was clicking/grinding at low speeds. For once I got after a problem before it failed completely though I seriously doubt that’s going to be a new trend for me. But I don’t always mind problems that give me an excuse to upgrade.

All help is appreciated. Thanks!


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Last edited by KSKOOCH; 08-10-2013 at 11:41 AM.
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post #2 of 5 Old 08-10-2013, 11:28 AM
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Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Central Virginia
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you look lke your on the right track.... I would just clean up the insides of your axle tube the best you can.... yes that little outer lip will rest on the area you are pointing at.

Sit back have an adult beverage, relax and spend some time getting everything as good as you can. The seal is in, just clean up the next step until you can get the spacer slid all the way in......

1982 CJ-7 2003 4.3 chevy vortec, 4L60E, Clocked Dana 300 35 x 12.5 x 15 KM2 on Cragar 399's. Vanco Brake Booster. Power steering conversion. Warn front and rear bumpers with swing away. Moser 1 piece rears. Rear OX.

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Originally Posted by twoleos617 View Post
To reiterate for the 1,067th time, when towing...
remove rear axle, xfer in N, trans in 5th, remove neg batt cable, key to Run and go??
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post #3 of 5 Old 08-10-2013, 11:28 AM
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When i did my Mosers, i cleaned up the inside of the tube with a dremmel so that the spacer would slid in with Just a few gentle taps. Luckily mine was within specs and i didnt need to grind it anyhow.

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post #4 of 5 Old 08-10-2013, 11:44 AM
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I had to tap my spacers in as well.. Mostly because the housing where the bearing race used to sit was galled up from a couple bearing failures over the years.

As long as you don't have to beat on it to put it in, you should still be able to pull it out if it needs to be clearanced.

'84 CJ-17: 17" stretch, locked Toy axles, 5.5" lift, FI, AX15, D300 w/twin sticks, boatsides & junk.
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post #5 of 5 Old 08-10-2013, 01:16 PM Thread Starter
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Took all the advice including the beverage. Cleaned it up better with the dremmel to get more of the scars from the PO's bearing fails etc. and with more than a few minor hammer whacks, both sides seated evenly all the way and measured well within the tolerances. It's good that they don't need to be grinded because they sure wouldn't want to come back out easy.

Anyway, thanks to all for keeping my axle upgrade moving forward this weekend!

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