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Triumph TR6 - Rear axles and such matters...


I will be doing the rear axle ujoints, driveline ujoints, and (probably) the trailing arm mounts on my car this summer.

Yep, summer. I'm too busy with the business this time of year cause everyone is going through their cars as we all know.

SO, I have to do mine in the summer.

I'm looking for thoughts on the axles and their replacement (I am fortunate enough to have a spare set that I'll do the bearings and ujoints on to get ready) before I attack this project.

I've taken many apart but haven't put one together. I'll be doing it on my back , under the car, on stands of course, since I don't need to disassemble the car.

Thoughts? Ideas? Caveats?

Thanks gents,

Jim (keeper of the Goose)
Jim Deatsch

Thought One: Direct threading of rear hub studs into the trailing arms is a rather silly idea. Particularly when we are talking about 1/4-UNF steel fasteners into cast aluminum. At work a design of this sort is something that is strictly prohibited. So be careful and don't strip, if stripped, suggest going to thin steel insert, installed with either wet epoxy primer or polysulfane sealant. Kill that galvanic corrossion potential at the source.

Thought Two: U-joints are pretty straight forward, but getting that prop shaft out will take some wiggling, not a lot of clearance at the differential. Then again, see thought four and it might become a non-issue.

Thought Three: If you are going to fiddle with trailing arm mounts, may as well do bushings at the same time, consider urethane.

Thought Four: Do a good inspection around the differential mounts, pins, brackets, and the flexible mounts themselves. If repair work is in order, may as well do that while the prop shaft and half shafts are out. Getting those things out of the way is half the job of removing differential for mount replacement.

Thought Five: You mention bearings, do you mean the hub bearings? If so, suggest that you sub that out to someone with the right tools for pulling the flange off the stub axle. Conventional bearing press will often bend/break flange. This particular job is outside the scope of most home projects.

Hey Goosman - hope you had a good New Year - I don't think I've had a more complicated few weeks in my life - but managed to survive to the important stuff...

It is known that a cause of the depressing 'clunk' from the rear end can also be due to worn splines in the axles.

Have you considered not using the TR splined shafts but improving the setup with roller-splined axles? - it involves a bit of straight forward machining to a pair of japanese axles (which are bulletproof) and 4x crossover uni joints which are available here. If you're interested I can let you know the deatschtails!

Don't want to tell mother goose how to suck eggs, but have the transmission shaft dynamically balanced while it is out.


Roger H

Hi Jim
Further to SteveP's post I fitted Helicoils to the rear hub mounts even although most of the holes were not stripped [they are 5/16" unf by the way] because I think the original design of a fine thread into soft metal is bad engineering practice and the consequences of a failure would be dire.[you're goose would be cooked]
In fact if I was doing it again I would use UNC Helicoils and use UNC/UNF studs.

R. Algie

Ron, right you are on that being 5/16-UNF as opposed to 1/4. It crossed my mind this morning that I had pegged the wrong size and planned on jumping on to correct. You also furthered my point of fine thread directly into a soft metal, bad engineering practice, designer should be flogged or at least be on the recieving end of the proverbial stern message. The idea of going to UNC-UNF had also crossed my mind, but then decided that if a steel insert was used, then UNF-UNC or UNF-UNF would work since the threading would be into the steel insert and directly into the soft aluminum (or is that aluminuim?).

Roger, please let us know some details on the machining and which rear axles to choose and use. On board here or direct e-mail is fine by me.

Jim--If your splined fit is a bit sloppy and you need to replace the male & female halves, consider getting the alternaitve style from the UK. They don't use a boot, but rather have a screw-on cap securing a rubber gasket to keep the dirt out. I have them and think they are a better design.

Rick O.
Rick Orthen

When you say "doing the trailing arm mounts" you mean....? That's the perfect time to correct for excess negative camber if it's a problem.

Brent B

Heed the warnings about the hub studs.
My rear is now helicoiled....sorta speek.
Also when doing the prop shaft, remember to properly "align" the front and back u-joints (sorry can not think of the tech word for this right now).
How are the dif they have the extra bracing brackets?
Rick C
Rick Crawford



GOOSE, what a bunch of replies and I sincerely thank you guys.

Let me look things over and get back to you all. I may do a blow, by, blow for the archives too, you never know.

Helicoils, yep, knew that, but THANKS you guys.

Rick C, I know about timing the ujoints. Belive me I know. <G>

Rick O, I'm gonna do the spline checkout deal. I'm wondering how one measures the amount of slop in such a device.

Rahger the H! the Deatshtails man, the Deatschtails. Out with it. Btw, we've a couple of your countrymen (from Sydney don'tcha know) here for a class I'm giving for work. FIRST THING THEY DO is complain about the beer. Jeesh, sounds like a bunch of CANADIANS for cryin' out loud. <G> And the bleedin' driveline (tailshaft indeed!) will be balanced.

and Steve, non member, HARUMPH, I'm going to buy you a full time connection to the BBS for your birthday... many thanks for the 1-5 tips. I knew a couple, and didn't a couple.

You guys are the bees knees and I thank you all.

This will be a documented deal methinks.

Jim (GooseTender)

Jim Deatsch

Jim, all I know about rear axles is that I got goosed when I paid the local thief to repair mine when I first got the car. It was a hard lesson learned, and I think I basically paid for the Jag guy's mechanic to learn how to do it, very, very slowly. That's all I know.

Happy New Year, by the way. I was too busy over the holidays to do much, but I did get new interior and exterior mirrors for Christmas, and they really look good on the car! John.
JL Bryan

Sorry for the delay in reply ....getting into summer here fast....temperature is rising and the beer is @ 4C (aaaahhh....) Forget that F*sters crap - we don't export tha good stuff...unless of course you know someone.....

I'm happy to share all I have, but for the time being let's limit it to....

...the axles you need are from the Nissan/Datsun range. Here they were sold as the 180B, 200B, 240K, 240Z, 260Z (and I think the 300Z uses the same axles). The 180 (etc) refers to engine size as well as body style, 180=1800cc / 200=2000cc etc.
As Datsun used the same axles for the entire range, you can see that they were significantly over-designed for the 180 series.

The axles are roller splined and use ball bearings as the contact points between the M & F shafts. I have sourced several from the wreckers (shaddup Jim - not 'breakers' thanks!) and in top condition are about USD40 each - you need two!!! :-) They need to be shortened at a machine shop which involves just taking the tip off the male end. This sounds more painful than it is, and is easily done but you do need a shop to do it and re-cut a circlip retaining groove.

The Triumph uni joint yolks at the diff and bearing ends are re-used, but this means a difference in the size to the Datsun axle - hence the 'crossover' uni joints required. There is a machine shop here setup to produce them. They only use good quality base units for machining but the labour and 'wastage' is high as they only use the 4 caps and needle bearings from a donor unit. The cost for direct export (no taxes) works out at about USD42 (You need 4 per car :-) and is for 'bulk' orders of 3 sets or more. I can put you in direct contact with the supplier.
I don't know if this is expensive from your side of the fence - it is staight forward enough to get done, but sometimes the setup costs can be prohibitive and it could be worth buying them in.

Make no mistake - these are good. Obviously you need a set in good condition to start with, but generally, if the factory rubber boot is intact, they show no slop at all. They fit perfectly into the trailing arm and look as though they were meant to be there. The TR sedans take them without shortening, but the '6 has a slightly narrower track.

((PLEASE NOTE - PRICES ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGE WITHOUT NOTICE! - SHIPPING COSTS ARE NOT INCLUDED!)) I am not in the business and have no relationship with any suppliers yet to be mentioned.....


..What was that dear?........oh yeah... thanks love......just put it down by the pool...I'll be there in a minute!

Roger H

Interesting stuff, Roger. BTW, the Fosters over here is brewed in Canada. I'm not trying to start anything, but they claim it's better than the Aussie version....

Brent (ducking down)
Brent B

Further to Rick Os posting about the screw on cap securing a seal, I'm not 100% sure but I think that was fitted to TR4a & 5 driveshafts and dropped for the 6
R. Algie

Thanks Ron. Forgot to mention that the older style axles also have a Zerk fitting. I assumed the switch to the booted variety was a ST/BL cost-saver but wasnt' sure (thanks for confirming my suspicions). I bought my axles from the TR Shoppe in your neck of the woods.

Rick O.
Rick Orthen

This thread was discussed between 05/01/2004 and 06/01/2004

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