Front wheel bearing replacement on 10-bolt...One man job?

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Hi,
My wheel bearings need to be replaced on the front passenger side of my K5. The axle is a stock 10-bolt.
On a 1-10 scale of difficulty, how would you rate this, and is there a
decent online manual/instructions to assist me? I Googled, but didn't find a lot.
How long should the job take?
I was quoted around $200 to have it done by the alignment shop. I have a real hard time buying that, but can't get it aligned till the front end is squared away.
Thanks,
~jp
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Easily a one man job! Go get a Haynes manual for your K-5. You will also need a spindle nut socket, a pair of jack stands, a brass punch, and a race/seal driver...and a few other tools.
Be sure to replace both bearings in both sides AND the seals. Use the best wheel bearing grease you can and most importantly, don't rush!

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Before I tackle this job, I want to make sure the alignment place (tire shop) knew what they were talking about.
They said the wheel had quite a bit of play when it was up on the rack. Now, just 2 days earlier I'd had the ball joints replaced on the drivers side. The guy at the shop where I had my new rear axle put in noticed it, and said the ball joints were worn on the drivers side, but the passenger side was fine.
The the alignment shop says the bearings are gone on the passenger side, but there's no problems on the driver's side.
Both shops reported roughly the same symptoms (excessive play in the wheel, able to rock it in and out vertically).
Opinions..?
~jp
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I will say that there is an issue with the steering wheel cut hard left, not so much hard right...
For instance, pulling into a parking space at home or work (requiring me to turn hard right) is OK... But backing out (requiring me to turn hard left) causes some clunking noises, and a slow shudder, sorta like having it in 4x4 and trying to do a tight turn in the parking lot. Except I have it in 2-wheel drive...
~jp
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Sounds like there is a definite misalignment and/or severely warn parts.
When it comes to ball joints, bearings, tie rod ends, etc...They all have the same miles on them on the same roads. There will be a variance to some degree...RF kisses curbs, Right turns are tighter on the street than lefts, in 4WD the power is put to the LF, etc. But if your gonna put the money into the front end, your better off doing all 4 ball joints, all 4 tie rod ends, both axle u-joints, both axle bearings, both seals, all 4 wheel bearings, etc, etc...than just doing ONLY the 2 loose ball joints and wheel bearings and one axle u-joint or whatever mix of parts the case might be. Yes it costs more, yes it takes more time, yes its that much more $$ for labor if you don't do it yourself...BUT...at least you will have a SOLID piece of mind that ALL the same parts are all good at the same time.
When I tore apart the DANA 44 in my '71 3/4T 4x4, I hadn't done front end work before(not in a 4x4 at least), so I got a Haynes manual, bought the tools I would need, tore it apart paying careful attention to the book and to what I was doing, found a shop to do the press work that I didn't have the equipment to do, and put it back together slowly and carefully. It took me approximately 2-3 days from jacking up to jacking down and about $300 total. It was SO worth it! The front tires wore as flat and true as the rears. I could do 70 down the Freeway with no hands on the wheel and never leave the lane. It was awesome and I had the self esteem boost of knowing I did 80% of all the work myself and also spent 1/4 what I would have if I had a shop do all the work!
Never skimp on front end, steering, or brake work...I would rather have 200HP and be able to control and stop it with confidence that to have 700HP and not be too sure about where it was gonna go and if I was gonna be able to stop it!
Maybe I am just weird...but that's the way I look at it!
DEFINATLY replace what's bad, and DEFINATLY consider doing the same work to the same parts on the opposite side. Remember also, a solid axle 90% of the time only has toe in/out adjustment and steering-wheel-centering adjustment...is it worth the money to have a computer alignment done when you and a friend can do the same thing with a tape measure?

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I agree, I'd rather have the whole thing gone through properly. However my budget only allows for a little to be done at a time. And I'm also living in a gated community (apartment) so I have to be as stealthy as possible when it comes to auto-repair. They don't care for residents rebuilding front-ends in the parking lot ;-)
I'm just making short lists of things to be done and then tackling those before moving onto other things. Right now the rich-running condition and front end slop are the two things on the list. I do wish I had a garage. Besides keeping me out of the public's view, it'd also provide much needed shelter. It's getting mighty cold out, and daylight disappears around 6pm. I get off work at 5 or 5:30...luckily I live about 2 blocks away. If I make a game plan before getting home and have the tools in the floorboard of the truck, I can quickly get to work and get a little bit done before the sun sets.
Hopefully when I get home today the EGR block-off plate I ordered will be in, and I'll be able to quickly pop off the carb and install it, and taking a quick vacuum measurement before the sun goes all the way down.
Of all the things on your to-do list, I'd skip the axle bearings, because 4-wheel drive hasn't been used often on this truck. And frankly, it can't be... the newly rebuilt rear axle has 3.73's...the front has 3.08's. But I would like to get the shaky wheel under control.
I have a chance to get a free Dana 60 front end as a good core. I'd rather keep it in my storage unit, going there to build it during a couple of weekends, then have it just bolted in.
~jp
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Where abouts do you live? I have a 10bolt front axle out of an '85 with 3.73's...you interested? I also have a good set of axles(rear 12-bolt/front 10-bolt) with 3.08's and the rear has a Gov-Loc! I even have a REAL nice set(R-12/F-10) with 3.73's in what was a GREAT driving and handling '91 Suburban. Maybe a nearly new built-up TH350 with NP-208 that has the TH700 adapter already installed? Got plenty of other '85 and '89 Suburban parts too!

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I'm in Atlanta man... What about you?
Actually, I think we had this conversation a while back before I decided to rebuild my 10-bolt rear... Yep...just Googled it... I thought this seemed awfully familiar.
Bolting your 3.73-loaded 10 bolt in would probably be cheaper than regearing my current front end and then replaced the other worn parts.
Shipping is a huge problem though. I don't have a place to actually receive something like that, and transporting it would require me renting a small trailer. So axle troubles have been keeping me down lately, lol... The logistics of pulling it off make it worth the expense to just rebuild or have someone else do it.
But still... I'll repair my 10-bolt, but I'm not going to get another one. Either a 44 or a 60 (probably the 60) will end up going up there. I'm going tomorrow to look at a 60 and a 14-bolt (both free) that I may be able to sell off. The 14-bolt I'd sell for Dana 60 parts or something.
I'd rather make the front 10-bolt just work while I acquire the Dana 60 parts.
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If your planning on installing a DANA 60 in the front, you will need the 14bolt to compliment it with the 8-lugs, strength, etc...
For the DANA 60 I would drive down there and install the 3.73 front end for you! I might be making out better than you a little bit though...Sure beats all the converting you would have to do to run one-ton axles though!

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Ha!
Well, I'm waiting on an unused 14-bolt that's still strapped to a military pallet...it was unused surplus. Brand new, with 4.56 gears and a locker. A friend is getting it for me. It is to cost me only a couple of bottles of quality Gin :-)
He's also steering me toward a D60 that's sitting under a burned out CUCV frame. It's complete minus the locking hubs. Besides opening it for inspection, it should be a case of bolt it in, fill it up, and drive. We're supposed to check it out on Friday.
However, if you're serious...and I do get that Dana 60, I'll take you up on the offer. I'd rather find a Ford high-pinion 60 anyway 8^)
~jp
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Jon Pickens wrote:

    Dyna-Trac.
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Yeah, yeah... I know. I'd love to have one, but I don't see myself being THAT serious of an off-roader.
I mean I want strength and ground clearance, but I don't see myself breaking a good Dana 60 anytime soon.
You seen those cool Currie diffs that have the pinion rotated so that the cover is sort of on top, rather than just on the back of the diff???
~jp
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Buying a HUGE $$$$ front end will do no one any good unless they are into hard-core rocks, major mud, mega HP, etc. A DANA 44/GM 10bolt will handle 400HP, 35inch tires, and recreational off-roading. A DANA 60 on a 90% street rig is 100% bragging rights and 0% function...like running a 700HP, 7500RPM, Dominator mounted, BBC on the street.
I am running a '76 HD DANA 44 in my Truck, and it will probably be enough for what I will put it through...I only want the DANA 60 to have that extra margin of strength. I am more of a harsh Off-Roader, running 35's, swapping in 4.56 - 4.88 gears, Lockers F & R, and an 8ft plow...among other things.
A DANA 60 will handle worse on the street, give you worse mileage both due to its heavier weight. It is not a front end for anything over 50% street or less than harsh Off-Roading.

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Shades wrote:

    A Dana 60 & a Rear Dana 70 in a 1 ton truck has it's uses. Especially if like me You want a 1 ton 4x4 roll-back wrecker with 38's and the ability to do deep woods recovery. Charles
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Charles Bendig wrote:

I woud take a 10.5 inch 14 over a Dana 60 any day because it is stronger and has bigger axle shaft too by default. A D70 and a 14 bolt are about equal in ring gear and axle strength.
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I agree... However the Dana 60 will probably be free whereas a Dana 44 would require me actually trying to find one, then probably having to pay for it.
I did read an article about beefing up a 44 to match the strength of most 60's.
~jp
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I already made the offer to deliver and swap in a 3.73 front that I have for the DANA 60. The strength difference between the DANA 44 and the GM 10bolt is minimal. If you wheel hard enough to break a GM 10bolt, you will break the 10bolt.

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I already made the offer to deliver and swap in a 3.73 front that I have for the DANA 60. The strength difference between the DANA 44 and the GM 10bolt is minimal. If you wheel hard enough to break a GM 10bolt, you will break the DANA 44!
"Shades" <shades_1970(at)netins(dot)net> wrote in message

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Well, like I said... I know the aftermarket support for 44's is better than for GM 10-bolts. A 44 can be upgraded to use stronger shafts and other parts from what I've seen. Not the strength of a good 60, but much stronger than a stock 44. Way stronger than a 10-bolt.
Actually, the point of the article I read showing all that was to show a built 44 as a lighter alternative with better ground clearance than a 60--for those who need more strength than a stock 44, but not the strength (and weight) of a 60.
But I am seriously considering your offer. I'll just have to see how this whole deal plays out. It may be a couple of weeks before I have access to the 60, and I want my front end troubles to be over now.
~jp
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Jon Pickens wrote:

You can get after market axle shafts for a 10 bolt too. Nothing is realy gained in a 10 bolt to 44 swap unless you use a D44 out of a old fullsize Jeep because they have thicker axle tubes than the D44 the Ford, GM or Dodge uses (not many know this)
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