Is My Front Diff Bad?

THIS FORUM IS FOR ANY QUESTIONS ON THE 7.25" IFS FRONT DIFF, CV HALF SHAFTS AND FRONT DRIVE SHAFT.

Moderator: Cobra

ihatemybike
I plan to be buried in my van
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How many wheels are on an Astro van? (4): 6
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Re: Is My Front Diff Bad?

Post by ihatemybike » Tue Feb 02, 2010 3:21 am

Yeah, buying a front diff by itself can be costly. If you have the space, buying a parts van is the way to go. I only paid $225 for mine and have pulled well over $900 worth of parts off it so far.

Any repair manual plus a bit of heat and you should be able to get the shafts out.

Tearing apart the CVs isn't too hard. I carefully cut the big band on the outboard boot using a rotary tool cutting wheel so I'd only have to buy the bands to put them back together. There is a lot of grease that will need to be cleaned to see what you're doing. Down the shaft in a groove in the inner bearing race is a snap ring that needs to be spread apart. This will allow the shaft to be removed from the inner bearing race. With the shaft out, it's just a matter of rotating the race/bearings/cage until they come out.

Once you pull the ATC fuse you should be able to leave the prop shaft and diff till you are ready for the swap.

If you need more tips while you are doing the job, you can call me. PM if you need the number.
Aaron

2005 Astro (Gandalf) - AWD, 4.3L, 3.42, 130k+ miles
1997 Astro (Grumpy - $250 Rally Van) - AWD, 4.3L, 3.42, LSD, 2" lift, 31" tires, 335k+ orig engine, $30 eBay fuel pump
Prev Astros:99,97,00,94,87,86

Mr Bean
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Re: Is My Front Diff Bad?

Post by Mr Bean » Tue Feb 02, 2010 10:22 pm

PM Sent...starting the project in 30 minutes. 8-[
~Scott & Heather
2001 Astro AWD LT
All about me, my girl, & our van with loads of pics:
viewtopic.php?f=20&t=5281
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Mr Bean
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Re: Is My Front Diff Bad?

Post by Mr Bean » Wed Feb 03, 2010 2:54 pm

Aaron! You rock! Called him twice last night during the 5 hour diff pull. He saved us twice. haha. Horrible job. very dirty. i have grease in my hair.
~Scott & Heather
2001 Astro AWD LT
All about me, my girl, & our van with loads of pics:
viewtopic.php?f=20&t=5281
Image

astroturf
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Re: Is My Front Diff Bad?

Post by astroturf » Wed Feb 03, 2010 2:57 pm

Glad to hear it worked out. Jim

ihatemybike
I plan to be buried in my van
Posts: 2275
Joined: Mon Jan 07, 2008 2:57 am
How many wheels are on an Astro van? (4): 6
Location: Elgin, IL

Re: Is My Front Diff Bad?

Post by ihatemybike » Wed Feb 03, 2010 5:15 pm

Glad to be of help.
Aaron

2005 Astro (Gandalf) - AWD, 4.3L, 3.42, 130k+ miles
1997 Astro (Grumpy - $250 Rally Van) - AWD, 4.3L, 3.42, LSD, 2" lift, 31" tires, 335k+ orig engine, $30 eBay fuel pump
Prev Astros:99,97,00,94,87,86

Mr Bean
I finally get the smurf thing
Posts: 106
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How many wheels are on an Astro van? (4): 4

Re: Is My Front Diff Bad?

Post by Mr Bean » Wed Feb 03, 2010 8:09 pm

So aaron...we never did put back any "half shafts" or anything like that...are we forgetting something?
~Scott & Heather
2001 Astro AWD LT
All about me, my girl, & our van with loads of pics:
viewtopic.php?f=20&t=5281
Image

ihatemybike
I plan to be buried in my van
Posts: 2275
Joined: Mon Jan 07, 2008 2:57 am
How many wheels are on an Astro van? (4): 6
Location: Elgin, IL

Re: Is My Front Diff Bad?

Post by ihatemybike » Wed Feb 03, 2010 9:20 pm

As long as you put the axle stub back in the hub and properly torqued it, you should be ok. The rest of the CV (half shafts) can stay in storage for now.
Aaron

2005 Astro (Gandalf) - AWD, 4.3L, 3.42, 130k+ miles
1997 Astro (Grumpy - $250 Rally Van) - AWD, 4.3L, 3.42, LSD, 2" lift, 31" tires, 335k+ orig engine, $30 eBay fuel pump
Prev Astros:99,97,00,94,87,86

Mr Bean
I finally get the smurf thing
Posts: 106
Joined: Tue Dec 08, 2009 6:30 pm
antispam: No
How many wheels are on an Astro van? (4): 4

Re: Is My Front Diff Bad?

Post by Mr Bean » Wed Feb 03, 2010 10:55 pm

hmm. we never even removed the axle nuts. we were able to get enough play in the system by removing one lower control arm nut and prying the shaft out of the diff and removed stuff from there. so i hope we're ok...ahah.
~Scott & Heather
2001 Astro AWD LT
All about me, my girl, & our van with loads of pics:
viewtopic.php?f=20&t=5281
Image

ihatemybike
I plan to be buried in my van
Posts: 2275
Joined: Mon Jan 07, 2008 2:57 am
How many wheels are on an Astro van? (4): 6
Location: Elgin, IL

Re: Is My Front Diff Bad?

Post by ihatemybike » Thu Feb 04, 2010 2:54 am

You disassembled the outer CVs with it still attached to the hubs? :yikes: :rolleyes:
Aaron

2005 Astro (Gandalf) - AWD, 4.3L, 3.42, 130k+ miles
1997 Astro (Grumpy - $250 Rally Van) - AWD, 4.3L, 3.42, LSD, 2" lift, 31" tires, 335k+ orig engine, $30 eBay fuel pump
Prev Astros:99,97,00,94,87,86

Mr Bean
I finally get the smurf thing
Posts: 106
Joined: Tue Dec 08, 2009 6:30 pm
antispam: No
How many wheels are on an Astro van? (4): 4

Re: Is My Front Diff Bad?

Post by Mr Bean » Thu Feb 04, 2010 1:40 pm

um. yes. here's the catch. we left the CV bearing in place. which means it's going to crud up and be useless. I plan to replace the CV's on both sides with new ones considering the van has 160 K on it and original joints and boots which were starting to show signs of wear. the other option of course is a solid front axle...or just sell the van to a member of the club who wants to do all that :)
~Scott & Heather
2001 Astro AWD LT
All about me, my girl, & our van with loads of pics:
viewtopic.php?f=20&t=5281
Image

ihatemybike
I plan to be buried in my van
Posts: 2275
Joined: Mon Jan 07, 2008 2:57 am
How many wheels are on an Astro van? (4): 6
Location: Elgin, IL

Re: Is My Front Diff Bad?

Post by ihatemybike » Thu Feb 04, 2010 2:13 pm

Wait, you left the inner race (star thing), bearings and bearing cage in the cup? With nothing to hold them in place?

***pictures all this stuff flying out at speed***

#-o
Aaron

2005 Astro (Gandalf) - AWD, 4.3L, 3.42, 130k+ miles
1997 Astro (Grumpy - $250 Rally Van) - AWD, 4.3L, 3.42, LSD, 2" lift, 31" tires, 335k+ orig engine, $30 eBay fuel pump
Prev Astros:99,97,00,94,87,86

Mr Bean
I finally get the smurf thing
Posts: 106
Joined: Tue Dec 08, 2009 6:30 pm
antispam: No
How many wheels are on an Astro van? (4): 4

Re: Is My Front Diff Bad?

Post by Mr Bean » Thu Feb 04, 2010 10:26 pm

oh dear. pm sent. :yikes:
~Scott & Heather
2001 Astro AWD LT
All about me, my girl, & our van with loads of pics:
viewtopic.php?f=20&t=5281
Image

brad
I am merely driving my van
I am merely driving my van
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Re: Is My Front Diff Bad?

Post by brad » Mon Mar 29, 2010 7:35 am

Guys the situation read out like a suspense thriller!!!! Need to know if everything worked out? will it be a happy ending?

astroturf
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Re: Is My Front Diff Bad?

Post by astroturf » Mon Mar 29, 2010 10:29 am

brad wrote:Guys the situation read out like a suspense thriller!!!! Need to know if everything worked out? will it be a happy ending?
Hey Brad, You can write your own ending of sorts... viewtopic.php?f=14&t=5597 , and pick up a decent van along the way. Enjoy, Jim

Mr Bean
I finally get the smurf thing
Posts: 106
Joined: Tue Dec 08, 2009 6:30 pm
antispam: No
How many wheels are on an Astro van? (4): 4

Re: Is My Front Diff Bad?

Post by Mr Bean » Mon Mar 29, 2010 1:07 pm

Thanks Jim! lol! It's a great van...just lost interest when I learned we couldn't tow it...and really, we need a vehicle with slightly better fuel mileage than this one...in any case, we'll be taking it to the local auction this coming week and it should be sold on the 8th of April if we don't have any takers...
~Scott & Heather
2001 Astro AWD LT
All about me, my girl, & our van with loads of pics:
viewtopic.php?f=20&t=5281
Image

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