How does that happen? Axle came unbolted from frame...

Discussion in 'Tires / Brakes / Bearings / Axles' started by Angus1211, Apr 7, 2021.

  1. Angus1211

    Angus1211 New Member

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    A bit ago, I was taking a look at the wheel of my recently new to me PUP, and I noticed that the passenger side wheel looked a little ****-eyed in the wheel-well. So I started looking around and got under the PUP and saw that the large bolts connecting the axle to the frame we’re, well, gone!

    1AAE9C52-8034-498B-A8E3-CC57AC9A61A0.jpeg 8B787EE6-88FB-4CA6-B931-C5A48FB51DA1.jpeg E364B237-2A19-47FD-98B0-F17C21579714.jpeg The axle was just bouncing around between the mounting brackets on the frame. Clean sliced the brakes wire. From looking at it, it only looks like 1 bolt was ever installed on this side... or the first one fell off long ago.

    Luckily, I had only towed it about 50 miles while it was like this. I remember there being some crazy reverb (like when you have a back window down) but with the windows up.

    Picked up new bolts and brake wire and got the axle bolted back in and the brake wire replaced. Also replaced the bolts on the other side as well just in case. Glad I did because one bolt on that side was not as tight as it should have been...

    Well, disaster averted, especially on a trip with the family.
     
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  2. generok

    generok Well-Known Member Gold Supporting Member

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    Yikes! Hopefully the new bolt have some LocTite on them. Wow, that's freaky.
     
  3. Anthony Hitchings

    Anthony Hitchings Well-Known Member Silver Supporting Member

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    You are not the first, there is at least one other instance on the web - Slim Potatohead. The connection needs high-grade (Gr 8 at least) bolts that are torqued to a high level so its truly clamped in place. (BTW: thread locker is not a cure for a bad design)
     
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  4. jonkquil

    jonkquil Active Member Gold Supporting Member

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    Holy cow, that's the stuff of my nightmares! So glad you discovered it promptly.
     
  5. bluespruce

    bluespruce Member

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    Also, the grade 8 bolts are fine thread which are a little tougher to find. I think the fine thread doesn’t work loose as easy? I’m not sure. I just put a dexter axle lift on and the nuts were also crimped/compressed on one end to make one side a little oval/oblong. They were a bear to get on and once torqued I doubt they will come off easily.
     
  6. Fish N Farm

    Fish N Farm Well-Known Member

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    You were lucky.
     
  7. WrkrBee

    WrkrBee Well-Known Member Silver Supporting Member

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    How does it happen? Poor quality control at the manufacturer, churning out units as fast as they can, letting the dealer fix the stuff they or the customer catch.
     
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  8. Fish N Farm

    Fish N Farm Well-Known Member

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    That thing doesn't look like the bolts have been in it in awhile.
     
  9. Anthony Hitchings

    Anthony Hitchings Well-Known Member Silver Supporting Member

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    did you notice the lack of sealant in between the lengths of weld. Aliner sealed these unwelded edges with a long lasting goop on my 2003 chassis, to prevent corrosion on adjacent unmaintainable surfaces
     
  10. Old_Geezer

    Old_Geezer Well-Known Member

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    No need to be rude and call the guy slim potatohead.......LOL[:O]
     
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  11. carbonunit

    carbonunit New Member

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    Good heavens. I am checking mine as soon as I pull it from it's winter cave. Sorry for your troubles but I appreciate the heads-up! Glad you caught it before an accident occurred.
     
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  12. Anthony Hitchings

    Anthony Hitchings Well-Known Member Silver Supporting Member

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    Loctite is a poor approach. Get the right size and grade of bolt, and torque it up properly. Check it once in a while. All that Loctite does is make it a PITA when you need to take it off the next time. Loctite is also way overpriced. Loctite also gums up the threads on your fastener - interfering with getting the correct clamping force when you reinstall it to a specified torque.
     
  13. WrkrBee

    WrkrBee Well-Known Member Silver Supporting Member

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    Depends on what color you use. Pink and blue is ok, but green (cylindrical locking) can be tough, but some heat will take care of it, too. I've seen latex paint and fingernail polish suggested, also.
     
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  14. Sjm9911

    Sjm9911 Well-Known Member Gold Supporting Member

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    Nail polish is an old trick. But if you have the corect lock washer or nut with that build in its not needed. Based on that my break nuts are the ones with the build in grip to secure them, the grip is worn off and the nuts are smooth, a pain to get off now. Lock washers for me when i install the new ones.
     
  15. Anthony Hitchings

    Anthony Hitchings Well-Known Member Silver Supporting Member

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    IMO lock washers are mickey mouse, real machinery does not use them. My guess is that they are used when the designer expects shade tree mechanics who do not own torque wrenches to work on stuff - like the old 2-stroke motor mowers.
     
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  16. Sjm9911

    Sjm9911 Well-Known Member Gold Supporting Member

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    So, what do you use? Its easy to poo poo something and not give a better alternative. Its not exactly machinery. It gets bounced around a lot. So, what say you?
     
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  17. WrkrBee

    WrkrBee Well-Known Member Silver Supporting Member

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    About all of the equipment I assembled and maintained over 40 years had flat washers and lock or star washers. Aircraft (safety wired, also) to industrial manufacturing equipment.
     
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  18. Sjm9911

    Sjm9911 Well-Known Member Gold Supporting Member

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    Now im confused, i said lock washers and you said there not good......what am i missing? We must be on diffent pages.
     
  19. WrkrBee

    WrkrBee Well-Known Member Silver Supporting Member

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    I was agreeing with you. Lock washers are an industry standard, for a reason. Not Mickey Mouse.
     
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  20. tenttrailer

    tenttrailer Art & Joyce - Columbus, O

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    I dont think it was factory quality. If you look at it. It looks like someone installed a lift kit. I think it was a previous owner that un-bolted the axle from the mount and installed the life kit and never tightened down the nuts after getting the axle in aligment.

    PS, I would duplicate the other side nut bolts and washers.
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2021

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