Lotus Elan

Rear axle removal

PostPost by: bluesbrother30 » Tue Aug 18, 2009 12:44 am

I have done some reading in the archives and must admit I am not clear on the procedure. I have a S3 and want to remove, dismantle and resto my rear struts as well as install new bearings. I bought a RD hub puller, worked like a charm, they poped right off. Looking at service book, it appears that now I have the hubs off, I can push the axle though the hub with the disk still attached. I see that both bearings are held in by circlips. Is there any need to remove the circlips to remove just the axle/disk combo?? I have taken the forum suggestions and cleaned all the surfaces around the bearings and the axle tapered end so it does not hamper the removal. I have a press but there is no easy way to use it with all the weird angles present. Heat? Big hammer?? Suggestions please so I dont bugger something up.

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PostPost by: paddy » Tue Aug 18, 2009 8:11 am

There's quite a good description in Robinshaw and Ross if you're able to get hold of a copy.

It is possible with the strut in the car but a lot easier if you have the whole strut assembly on the bench.

Once you've removed the driveshafts, the disc will be removed anyway, so that's not an issue.

The procedure is:

- remove the circlip that retains the inboard bearing in the housing. Remove all of the crud from the housing to allow the bearing to come out. Soak the whole thing in lots of WD40;

- the axle needs to be removed complete with the inboard bearing attached, leaving the outboard bearing still in the housing. It takes a bit of force, mainly because the outboard bearing is an interference fit on the shaft. The bearing might also have been Loctite'd in the housing. I was able to tap out the axle with a copper mallet, with a little bit of heat on the housing.

- then the outboard bearing can be removed from the housing by removing the circlip and drifting it out.

- you will see that the inboard bearing is retained on the shaft with a circlip. Remove the circlip and then the bearing can be removed from the shaft. Again it's an interference fit so a bit of force is needed and a press is friendlier than a hammer.

Reinstallation is reversal of the removal procedure, with the additional points:

- clean the journals in the housing and check the fit of the bearings. Depending on how much corrosion there was, the bearings might be a bit loose. Choose an appropriate grade of Loctite depending on the fit;

- with the parts all apart, you are able to freeze/heat components as appropriate to make reassembly to the shaft easier. Do not heat the new bearings above 70 degrees to avoid damaging the seals. I think Loctite is also recommended where the bearings fit to the shaft.

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