PING: IAN S-10 aluminum driveshaft questions

I went to Pep Boys to have the u-joints in my 2000 S-10 ZR2 replaced. It was becoming a more immediate need and I was considering selling the truck anyway. The tech put the truck on the lift for his own
diagnosis after a trip around the parking lot and found NOTHING wrong with the truck. After a more thorough explanation from me, and a longer drive, he put it back on the lift and found the noise I'd been hearing, definately coming from the DS area.
He told me the u-joints aren't worn (no play in them at all), but they're BINDING, and he's seen it before, heard of it before, with S-10s with aluminum driveshafts. I had talked to Firestone about getting the repair done (wanted $200 p/l compared to PB's 150 and change) and they had a similar experience. They had replaced u-joints on an aluminum-shaft S-10 with the same symptoms and that did not resolve the problem, they had to replace the shaft. They later discovered that others had the same problem and this was some kind of known issue.
Here's my problem, I was hoping to replace the truck but can't find anything in this size category that I like, so I think I'll keep this truck for a little while. Do I really need to replace the DS to repair this? Has anyone "in the business" seen this before, is it a common problem with a TSB issued or something? I have a contact that's getting me a number for a local shop that builds shafts for race cars, he said they'd do it for around $300. It's my understanding that the GM shaft, that comes complete with joints and slip-yoke runs around $450. Which route do you guys suggest? I'll probably have the guy build it complete so I can just pick it up when it's done and drop it in some evening if I have it built locally.
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Hit the yellow pages and see if there is a driveline shop in your area. Got two here where I am at and all they do is drive shafts and half shaft rebuilds and repairs as well as custom shaft work. Whitelightning
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Mike Levy wrote:

What is the specific noise you are hearing? I've never heard of replacing the driveshaft for any particular reason. I've seen u-joints that are "binding", but replacing them "properly" fixes the problem. Often, tech's that are not familiar with replacing u-joints don't do the little things to free up the new u-joints once they are installed.
Ian
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wrote:

It's a creak or squeak when taking off from a dead stop, sounds like it'd match with the DS turning. It turns into a chirp while rolling. I'm getting a reccomendation for a driveline shop on Tues., I'll probably go there after work that day or the next day and see if he can get me fixed up properly. Then I'm gonna start cruising lots for Trailblazers, it's the only mid-size vehicle I like, the Silverado is too big, the Colorado seems too small.
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Mike Levy wrote:

Once the tech takes the u-joint apart, he will probably find one or more of the cross-shafts is rusted and worn. We see this a lot. You can't always feel any play, but you will notice rust coming out of the u-joint grease seal. Replacing the u-joint properly should fix it, if that is the problem.
Ian
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Colorado is a bit bigger than the S-10. I traded my 97 P/U, kept the 98 S-15 Jimmy when I bought a CO in June.
Mike Levy wrote:

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Robert Ball wrote:

Colorado is only about 1" bigger than the S10, and after sitting in one for a few minutes I bought a silverado, it felt more cramped than the s10 and had a very poor dash layout which felt like the 80's again.
My s10 would make a creak when I started out like you described. I couldn't feel any play in the u joints but replaced them all, once I got one off the needles were rusty and dust came out of the cap. So they can get dry and go bad and have noise but no other symptom. It took me 4 trips to different automotive stores to fine decent U joints, kept getting chinese ones which would fall apart before I could even put them in. One the grease fitting caught on cardboard flap of the box and broke off just taking it out of the box. They also had very few with grease fittings, most were the non greasable type like the factory ones so they would get dry after a couple years like the factory, I'd bet if you get good quality joints in there you will be fine.
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It took me 4 trips to

Some of the U joints with grease fittings are weak. Be sure you get good ones. Almost all the heavy duty joints are not cross drilled.
Al
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Big Al wrote:

I was going to lookup some of the good ones that the 4x4'ers use but ended up selling the s10 for a full size, so it will be a bit before I have to replace U joints again.
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