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

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Well the main thing I'd be after would be a high-pinion if I were to actually swap anything. So a high-pinion 44 or 60 would do me just fine. I am planning to mildly lift the truck some (like maybe 4") and
would line to keep driveline vibration to a minimum. Plus getting a Ford unit with a driver's side diff will let me set up a crossover steering system.
I realize that my parts goals may seem like overkill, but that's just the way I am with my stuff. More than I usually need, but there when I do need it.
Plus once I am able to actually take this thing off road without fear of breaking parts, I'll probably start doing it a lot more. And that could lead to even more mods if it doesn't suit my needs.
I mainly want strong axles with at least the same ground clearance as my buddy's Jeep Limited. It received a lift before he even drove it, with 33" tires. He's got (IIRC) a Dana 44 in back, and a 30 up front. Granted he's in a much lighter vehicle than my K5. I am planning for 35's. I know the 14-bolt will eat up some clearance, hence the 35's, and I may look into shaving the bottom of the housing if need be.
~jp
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My stock height '84 K-5 with 31inch A/T's was able to go everywhere my Friends lightly lifted 33inch mild mudder TJ was able to go...and I pulled him out about 6 times where he pulled me out once. I also have followed K-5's and Broncos with my mile long stock 31inch tired Suburban.
Its not what you drive or how built up it is, its HOW you drive what you got!
One more thing...I never said I have a DANA 44 with 3.73's...I said I have a couple 10bolts with 3.73's(both of them having a matching 12 bolt rear) to match your rear and would deliver and install one for you for the DANA 60. Sorry if there was some confusion on that issue. I am sure I could easily get my hands on a few DANA 44's with 3.73's though. I have a source up here that is always impressed me with what he has!

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Yeah, I understood... I may have been confusing in a response. I know you've got a 10-bolt, not a Dana 44.
Beyond just wanting a little more ground clearance, I think 31's just look a little too small--sorta unbalanced. I know 33's are a little more expensive, but we'd be talking a few dollars per tire. I could live with that.
As for your offer, I'm still mulling it over. I know Dana 60's have shot up in price in the last few years, and a good one would obviously be valuable to you. It would be to me too but, as I stated, if I were to go through the trouble of upgrading the front end, I'd go with a high-pinion (Ford) design. And as stout as the GM 60 would be, the low-pinion design and passenger-side differential wouldn't fit my wants/needs.
So yeah, it's safe to say that if I get this 60, I won't be hanging onto it. It'll just become a different form of currency. Just gotta decide how I want to spend it ;-)
~jp
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I actually have been considing a Dana 50 front end. I read an article describing them, and because they're not too common and aren't popular at all they are apparently a cost effective upgrade to a 10-bolt or Dana 44.
The housing has the same outside dimensions as a 60, but the inside is smaller. This makes the walls of the pumpkin thicker.
Both 44's and 50's have an 8.5" ring gear, but obviously the 50 has thicker axle shafts. Also the 50 uses stouter u-joints. Lockers are now available for these axles as well. I do not however believe 35 spline axles are readily available right now.
But with the added size of the pumpkin, I'd assume it could be shaved down for a little more ground clearance than a 60.
Could be interesting to say the least.
~jp
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Shaving the bottom of the diff compromises the strength more than it adds clearance. You would actually have to remove the bottom portion of the housing and have a thick piece of steel welded in its place, but higher... usually within 1/4 of an inch from the ring gear. That would necessitate a modified or custom cover. I don't know much about the DANA 50 but if you have a website or 2 you could link to me, I would appreciate it.

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Yeah...I've seen shaved and cut 14-bolts. When I say "cut" I mean they cut off the bottom section of the Diff housing and did exactly as you say--they welded on a thick plate of steel to reinforce it. They actually went so far as to shave the diameter of the ring gear down to remove a bigger section. Apparently the pinion was in far enough to where they could do this without affecting the function or strength of the ring gear.
Here's a typical shave job: http://www.coloradok5.com/shaved14bolt.shtml
Here's the one where they cut the bottom of the housing out. Scroll down about 2/3 of the way down the page to "Shaving the 14 Bolt: http://www.pirate4x4.com/tech/billavista/14b_bible /
Um...let's see...Dana 50 stuff... Same size housing as a 60. Same ring and pinion size as a 44. As I recall, the "44", "50" and "60" are referring to the diameter of the axle shafts (in millimeters) so the 50 would be stronger than a 44 in that respect. Obviously the housing in stock form is going to be stronger than either a 44 or a 60.
I'm digging, but good info is difficult to find on the 50. I didn't even know about it until I read an article in a 4-wheel mag. I think the title was "The Other Dana" or something like that. I'll keep digging though.
~jp
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Jon Pickens wrote:

I donnot think it is a BEARING.. It may be the CV JOINT ( Halfshaft)

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no one wrote:

    He has a Solid Front Axle. K-5 Blazers from 1968 to 1972, then from 1973 to 1990/1991 Were Solid Front Axle Trucks.
    No C/V Joint, no Half Shafts. Just a Axle Per-side, One Joint (U-joint), then a outter axle/stub axle. Charles
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Hows the carb/vacuum issue going?

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Here's where I stand.
I only have the info I've gathered over time and my own experience to go on. That has led me to the belief that the engine vacuum being too low is causing the rich-running condition. A lack of vacuum pressure should cause the metering rods in the carb to stay in an up (rich) position.
I still have not connected the PCV line. It was suggested that it would lean out the mix. That doesn't make sense. It was said that more air=leaner condition... Hmm... technically that's true, but it would/could potentially mean even lower vacuum in my case, causing a richer condition.
So with only the vacuum advance and brake booster connected, I'm 99% sure that the source of low vacuum is my homemade EGR valve block off plate. Which I constructed using parts of the old EGR valve. Yes...I know...that's stupid. :-(
I am waiting on a real block-off plate to arrive in the mail. Hopefully it'll be there when I get home in a little while. If so, I'll bolt it on immediately and report back my findings tonight. As it is now, manifold vacuum is sitting at 15". I know that's acceptable by some standards, but I'd like to think it could go higher. Seems to be on the low end of the "acceptable" scale.
The Edelbrock tech support has been no help so far. The guy just keeps asking me what color my damn spark plugs are. I personally could give a damn if they're brown, black or purple. It's completely irrelevant to me right now. It spits visible, eye-burning vapor out the tailpipe. You can smell it while going down the road with the windows up because it's so bad. It gets 12mpg on the interstate. The timing is set at 15 degrees BTDC to maintain a steady idle and yet doesn't knock... Then after explaining all that (twice) to the guy he responds with (and I quote) "The carb sounds like it is too rich for your motor and color will tell us how much."
Really?
This was after he first suggested going to STIFFER STEP UP SPRINGS in the carb.
Gotta love Tech Support ;-)
~jp
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Stiffer springs, where did he get that , you may be over jetted also. Try spraying carb cleaner arounfd the egr block off see if the idle changes, that will confirm a leak there. but I believe it is not simply the vacuum here, I think the carb is set up too rich. 98 primarys seem kinda big, my Maxwedge crossram 426 S/S car ran 106',s but that was 2 carbs of course and different metering rod steps.

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That does bring up a question... Does the valve in the stock EGR on 86 Chevy V8's close off on the exhaust hole or the intake hole underneath?
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Yeah, I don't doubt that it could be set incorrectly... but I'm starting to understand the balancing act involved between engine components. As soon as the vacuum situation is under control I'm going to set it as close as possible to a proper mixture, run it, and adjust accordingly.
I will probably take the top off the carb and set the floats to about 3/8" instead of 7/16" as was suggested. Maybe re-jet too if needed.
~jp
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Believe me, the factory settings in the 1406 is PLENTY lean for your engine!!! The original springs are rated at 4 inches of vacuum...that means, the primary rods are all the way up at 4 inches of vacuum. That vacuum is NOT(directly) manifold vacuum. Besides, I know for a fact that you can pull the primary rods all the way out while the engine is idling and it will NOT flood!
Idle screws should be set at aprox. 1 1/2 turns out. You will not get proper drivability with an open adapter between the carb and intake. Be sure that the secondary butterflies aren't catching on the gasket, adapter, etc. 15 inches of vacuum is not at all bad on a carbureted engine. Install a fuel pressure regulator from your local parts store(the one with the large dial on top(the same maker as the class fuel filters)) and set it at about 1 1/2 - 2. That will confirm the proper fuel pressure. Run as much advance as your engine will take without pinging under load or bucking the starter.
Do these things and I 90% guarantee that your running problem will be over!

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I added a fuel pressure gauge on my fuel line between the filter and carb. It bounces wildly at idle (fuel pump pulsing I assume???) but when I gas it, it reads steady at like 2 psi...so I think fuel pressure is under control.
I know the springs are rated at 4" of vacuum. But the timing really has me confused. It's supposed to be between 4 and 6 degrees BTDC at idle right? Not 15! But it's not fighting the starter at all. There's something weird there. The mechanic said something was up with the harmonic balancer. I think he said it slipped (??). Not sure, but the gist of it was, the timing marks were off. I pulled the spark plug in cylinder #1 (front piston on drivers side) and put a small screwdriver in the hole. I turned the crank with a breaker bar a few times to feel where TDC was, then made a new mark on the balancer.
I'm definitely gonna attack the floats after I get the EGR block off plate. I'll have to take the carb off to install it anything, may as well do it then.
As far as flooding goes...you can visibly see gas flowing in the carb. It's circled in red in this picture:
http://www.absolutepickens.com/K5/gas.jpg
That's with the rods in place...Is that normal?
Now what's that about the carb adapter? It is...OPEN I suppose. Like sort of squarish, with round corners... It's not the kind that smoothly flows from the smaller Edelbrock bore to the larger Quadrajet bore. Should I have one of those instead? I was told it wouldn't matter.
This should NOT be this damn hard! :-P
(pulling my hair out)
~jp
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Jon Pickens wrote:

    On a SBC the timing mark is on a metal ring. Between that ring and the metal hub is a rubber ring. It is possible for the out ring to slide over time. Cheepest, least headache solution for you:
    Have someone install a New Stock Replacement Ballencer of the right size for your engine & timing marks on your timing chain cover.
    Also Remember when setting timing on Vaccume Advanced Distributors to pull and plug the vaccume hose. One ESC Vehicles (all Computer Equiped vehicles have ESC) to disconnect the wire specified in the GM service manuial or on the emissions decal. Charles
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Yeah I did that... I am running ported vacuum to the advance, so at idle it's not pulling. I double checked it with the vacuum gauge to make sure.
Is the balancer you're speaking of simply a new one or a different design that's not prone to slipage?
~jp
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Buy a NEW balancer OEM replacement balancer. You would benefit nearly nothing form a hi-po damper. I have never run less than 10degrees BTDC on any engine I have ever had...one ran best with 14, even in the heat of summer. Like I said, run whatever advance your engine enjoys. If you have serious concerns about the balancer being off, get a new one!

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Jon Pickens wrote:

    Just a new Stock Replacement. No perfromance gaines. Charles
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Jon Pickens wrote:

It is a easy job if you are mechancally inclined and there is not much toi align on that front end except toe in and maybe caster with shims between axle and springs. Do not use the shims between spindle and strut. You can toe it yourself. You want about 1/16 to 1/8 of a inch of toe in on it.
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