Paul, last time I did it on my VW, all I had to do was cut off the old boot
replace with a new one that was cut open lenthways.... a bunch of little bolts
close the boot up again once its on the axle... hope this makes sense to you
MB does not make a split boot. They only supply a boot rebuild kit that
includes new 'cans'. You need 2 expensive tools to replace them, a 'can'
cutter and a 'can' sealer. At the dealership, it runs close to 6 hours just
for the labor.
You can buy NEW axles from EMPI for $100 each!
But if you do not have the flanges, add more $$.
Another couple of questions -
What do I risk damaging driving with a duct tape boot like I am now?
It sounds like whatever it is, I have to replace it anyway unless I
want to get those can tools. How far do you think I can go with a
duct tape boot?
What are the "flanges?"
There are 2 types of axles: Homokinetic and angular.
Homokenetic axles have a splined shaft on each end.
Angular has a spline on the outer joint and a flat face on the inner.
Axle #5 is angular. The shaft above it with no number is homokenetic.
If you have flanges, the #5 shaft bolts on to it using 6 bolts and 2 half
moons. Pictured below the axle on the left end.
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