[update] mystery clunk from acura integra '91 front end ?

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Well thanks to all who replied back in February.
Problem: Dull clunking noise coming from the front end of '91 Acura Integra LS - 5 spd... ***but*** only at a very particular driving
circumstance of coasting to the bottom of one particular steep hill in 1st gear, then making a very sharp right onto an upward hill and shifting into second after making the turn. Somwhere in the turn and shifting the clunk would occur but not every time.
Sounded like some kind of suspension or mount etc problem.
Well the car stranded the driver immediately following the final clunk which was a particularly louder and bigger clunkier clunk (as i was told).
Car runs fine, the engine cranks easily , no obvious noises, clutch feels the same, transmission shifts or feels like it is shifting and when you look under the car everything seems to look normal (that is nothing is hanging or drooping or fallen out )....
The only diagnostic of any note is that when you press clutch and shift into higher 4th/5th gears and release the clutch you hear a buzzy/whiny noise that increases it's buzzy/pitch with the revving of the engine but at lower gears the noise is almost in-perceptible.
So anyone care to have a guess at the problem ? (answer below) robb . . spoiler space . . . . . . . . . . . . . . broken inboard joint on right driveshaft
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Thanks for the update. That's one I've never heard of before.
I'll bet those were aftermarket driveshafts.
--
Tegger

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driving
steep
upward
in
time.
I think you would win that bet.
I have a recollection of replacing the driveshaft about 10 years ago. I would **more than** likely have purchased cheaper units from the local (non-oem) parts store
robb
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so,what you said is that the aftermarket shaft lasted about as long as the original OEM Honda shaft.... :-)
Now,I'd want to know why the driveshafts are failing.... rough roads or driving style? [no offense intended...]
--
Jim Yanik
jyanik
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OEM inner CV joints would never break.
And I'll bet the OEM outer joints failed because the boots were allowed to split. Replace the boots in a timely manner, and OEM outer CV joints last almost forever.
--
Tegger

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[trim]
long as the

roads or

That is a good try Jim, but this might change your mind.
It is a low mileage car about 147k miles. the first 10 years saw the brunt of that at about 100+ K. I think the problem then was, as tegger guessed, the boots had split and that CV failed.
No offense taken here as for why they are failing. It is a low mileage car but they are hard miles with lots of stop'n go, lots of turns, hills, bad pavement and including lots of time in creeping rush hour traffic.
I am not the main driver so i can not comment on the driving style.
robb
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Driving style isn't important.
OEM joints do not break; aftermarket ones do.
--
Tegger

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I agree and disagree with you Tegger. I have replaced many OEM Honda axles with failed joints. However, failure was caused by split boots that went undetected until the ominous "clicking" from the front end was heard. All were outer joints as has been noted. Any joint OEM or aftermarket will fail in that situation. I can imagine only one reason for an inner joint to fail, though. Poor quality! Either the metal was not good or the QC at the manufacturer was seriously lacking. Oh, just a mo'... If the axle had been pulled to replace the outer boot/joint and the inner boot was disloged during R&R that could cause a failure, I believe? Not a common occurrence.
DaveD
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That's not a joint failure, that's a boot failure.
Boots take several years from the first appearance of cracks to when the boots let go entirely. There is no excuse for allowing boots to split completely.

That's why the boots are there in the first place. You're supposed to keep an eye on them and replace before they split. You have at least three years to catch that.
Would you wait until your oil light came on before checking your oil?

Not likely. Boot replacement requires removal of the inner joint before you can slide the boot off the outer one. So generally you replace both inner and outer boots at once.
And in any case, actuall /breakage/ of either joint is unheard of with OEM, but is a possibility with aftermarket.
--
Tegger

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On 05/06/2010 11:50 AM, Tegger wrote:

if you really wanted, though it would be somewhat inconvenient, you could theoretically do this with the shaft still in the car.

like replacing an oem coolant pump even though it's not defective.

i've experienced it several times - but it was because the car's frame was bent and the end was not seated properly in the end joint. the op should check for such damage. broken motor mounts can cause this too.
--
nomina rutrum rutrum

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Well, I suppose you /could/ do it that way, but there's little point.
In any case, all the Toyota and Honda factory manuals I've read show everything done with the tripod off and the outer joint on, and that's how I do it. That's also how it's done by just about all professional garages.
--
Tegger

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On 05/06/2010 02:44 PM, Tegger wrote:

maybe more modern driveshaft designs have changed, but that instruction comes with an oem honda outer joint replacement and it can be disassembled. personally, i'm not going to run the risk of invading and contaminating a perfectly good inner joint or replacing a perfectly good uncracked inner boot when i can replace the outer as a separate operation.
--
nomina rutrum rutrum

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Outer JOINT replacment, yes. But for BOOT replacement only it is completely unnecessary to remove the outer joint from the shaft. No garage would do that, anyway.

The inner joint is as simple as can be. It would be really, really tough to somehow contaminate the tripod. I can't see how you could do that unless you dropped the tripod on the floor or something.
You do it your way, and I'll do mine the way the pros do it.
--
Tegger

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On 05/06/2010 03:10 PM, Tegger wrote:

well, /i/ would do it that way because i wouldn't want to mess with a perfectly good inner boot and joint if i didn't have to. indeed, that is exactly the way i /do/ do this job.

unless you steam clean the exterior before you touch the thing, and you wash your hands after disassembly, you are going to contaminate anything you touch. fine grit gets everywhere.

the "pros" just do both together, in which case, that way is fine. but i think it's wasteful, unnecessary, and besides, you need to monkey with the dynamic balancer weight if you do it that way too. getting the outer joint off, if you have the correct tool, it literally a "snap" - couldn't be simpler.
--
nomina rutrum rutrum

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Tegger wrote: <snip>

I've never seen any of them break at the joint, OEM or not.
I have, however, seen an axle shaft break inside the boot. (I did not own the car for its entire history so I don't know whether that was a Honda axle or an aftermarket one.) That one took a while to figure out, since things looked perfect but the car wouldn't move. At first I thought the transmission was broken...
--
JRE


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Tegger wrote:

Well, that ain't necessarily true. Boots can split from causes other than old age. On my '83 FE, I had a split boot three months after I installed the joint. The only cause that I could come up with was a toosed rock that got caught in there while driving down a friends gravel driveway. (Gravel in Texas is "Texas sized" when it comes down to material.
Tree branches are another notorious cause of split boot. Otherwise, axles should be rebooted when they appear to show evidence of cracking.

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Those would have been aftermarket boots.
OEM boots are made of some kind of incredibly, unbelievably, stupendously, astonishingly tough synthetic rubber. I don't know what it would take to rip OEM boots, but I've failed in my personal efforts to do so.
--
Tegger

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On 05/06/2010 05:41 PM, Tegger wrote:

bouncing rock can and does pinch and puncture boots. not common, but it does happen. similarly, baler twine, barbed wire, iffy lube monkeys with a blade looking for extra income... all, can mean premature boot failure.
--
nomina rutrum rutrum

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Have to disagree with you Tegger. I have seen many OEM (Honda) boots fail after a single winter here in Fairbanks AK. Something about them not being too flexible and being very brittle at -40F or colder....
DaveD
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I've never seen an OEM boot split from low temperatures unless it was already pretty far gone to begin with.
--
Tegger

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