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Front drive shaft TC dust boot

Discussion in 'Stock 1995 - 2001 Explorers' started by rollinstone, September 22, 2010.

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    1. rollinstone

      rollinstone Active Member

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      This has to do with the dust boot that covers the universal joint coming out of the transfer case.

      History: April 2009 took the truck in to have the front drive line inspected...noises. Determined that the left bearing and short shaft needed replacement. Also decided to have the front drive shaft rebuilt. The rebuild includes a new dust boot. The original boot was shredded...don't know for how long.

      Nine-ten months later I was under the car and noticed the new dust boot was torn again, slinging lube. Took it back in to the same shop and they sent it out to have it redone by the same guys. Altho out of warranty, the drive-line shop rebuilt it at no charge...nice guys!

      OK, so 3 months go by and I'm under the truck again and same thing...shredded dust boot! Damn! Back to the shop and the shop owner put his own same gen Ex on the lift to compare and what does he find? Right...a shredded boot on his own Ex rebuilt by the same drive-line shop!

      Needless to say, they're talking. Don't know where it's all gonna end up. Does anyone have a clue why this damage keeps recurring? I can only assume that they're doing a shaft balance, etc...I mean, they've been in business a long time...same location for lotsa years.

      Two trucks, same problem? Too weird!
       
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    3. imp

      imp Well-Known Member

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      This would be a '97 model? My '96 had common ordinary U-Joints at all four points on both front & rear shafts, so evidently, or perhaps because mine was not a V-8, your '97 has possibly a constant velocity joint on the transfer case end of the front shaft?

      My '04 has a C-V there, but it is an unusual-looking thing with an internal seal boot which is hardly visible at all; if it were shredded, you would have to get in & look real close.

      So, I'm writing with hopes someone will clarify this, as I would really like to know what type of joint we are talking about here.....imp
       
    4. gavin

      gavin Elite Explorer

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      96-97.5 V8 Explorers had a double-cardan front driveshaft.
      This was replaced with the CV driveshaft, due to NVH (noise-vibration-harshness) caused by the angles of the front driveshaft with the double-cardan joint.

      as for the OP, I've never had a ripped boot on my front shaft. Well, I did once, but I caused the tear.

      Was the shaft inspected when received from the driveline shop, to verify the boot was, in fact, replaced? Maybe they never replaced the boot, since it cannot be replaced without replacing the whole cv cup.
       
    5. rollinstone

      rollinstone Active Member

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      The boot was replaced during the original rebuild and replaced again when I took it in the second time.
       
    6. imp

      imp Well-Known Member

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      My '96 XLT had no double-Cardan, just single U-Joints, both ends, same series as rear shaft-, it was a 4.0L OHV V-6. There must have been driveline angle issues with the V-8?

      BTW, the double-Cardan design is a constant-velocity joint. These were in some years used at both ends in expensive cars (Caddy & Lincoln).
       
    7. gavin

      gavin Elite Explorer

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      yes.
      I have a double-cardan front shaft that has horrible NVH. It's due to the shaft angles. The t-case output is actually angled up, rather than down towards the pinion.

      I haven't bothered to follow or research the 4.0's, since I don't have one.
       
    8. rollinstone

      rollinstone Active Member

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      My shop today told me the drive-line shop he sends his work to says they told him there is now a boot replacement kit. So, we might just go for the boot replacement...

      BUT, they also found out that the 2nd Gen Ex V-8s has had a vibration problem with the front drive shaft and that there is supposed to be a modified front drive shaft fix.

      We're still looking into it. If every boot I replace is just going to tear down the road, I'm thinking the shaft mod might be the way to go. Stay tuned.
       
    9. gavin

      gavin Elite Explorer

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      the NVH caused by the front shaft was only in the 96-97.5 V8 Explorers with the double-cardan front shaft.
      The "redesigned" shaft also included a different t-case to accept the CV shaft.

      edit: ok so there was a different TSB that affected 1996 V8s which required a reprogramming of the transmission along with additional bracing for the t-case.

      TSB 962416
      TSB BC0534961108
      TSB BC5225961001
      all 3 are related.

      97 only show
      TSB BC0534961108
      TSB BC5225961001
       
      Last edited: September 24, 2010
    10. rollinstone

      rollinstone Active Member

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      OK...got the dust boot replaced for parts only cost. While it was on the rack we noticed that, yes...the TC case does not angle down toward the front differential...looks like about a 2-3 degree angle difference as the front drive shaft connects between the TC case and differential.

      Also noticed that the TC case end of the drive shaft is not centered coming out of the TC case...looks like it sits just off-center in about the 7 o'clock position.

      So, does this offset mean that after repeated revolutions the boot is going to shred? As you see from the beginning of this thread, mine's been shredding for no apparent reason.

      I will be inspecting the dust boot weekly to try to pen point when/if it shreds again. I'm curious how many other '97 AWDs have experienced this. My local Ford dealership said they'd never heard of this being a problem...no TSB's, nada.
       
      Last edited: October 10, 2010
    11. 84convertablegt

      84convertablegt Member

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      Hate to dig up an old thread but I am having the same problem on my 95 Ranger that has a 5.0 conversion out of a 97 Explorer AWD. Same thing, my CV boots keep tearing and slinging grease all over the bottom of the truck. To me it looks like the angle of the shaft where it comes out of the CV is kind of sharp and it must stress the boot when turning. Has anyone else ever had this problem and does anyone know of a solution. My last resort would be to take it to a driveline shop and have a new setup built but I just replaced the front driveshaft like 100 miles ago and the rubber boot must have torn almost instantly.
       
    12. gavin

      gavin Elite Explorer

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      I've had several front shafts, but never due to a ripped boot.
      I just rolled over 220k miles.
      A failed/failing/sagging transmission mount bushing may cause an increase in front driveline angle, since it would cause the back end of the transmission to drop down which, in turn, would cause the front output shaft to angle further upwards.
       

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