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Today in prepping my JK Rubi for a wheeling trip next weekend I noticed I had a u-joint with the cap almost all the way off. So I replaced it.....no big deal right......Well I really struggled getting the u-joint out and the clips installed on the new one. All along I kept thinking there has to be an easier way. So my questions......

1. What is the easiest way to remove the u-joint from the axle shaft?

2. What is the easiest way to install clip on the new u-joint?
 

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i know i've seen a good article on doing this on pirate4x4, but i think it used full-circle clips, but not much difference. i'll try to find it.
 

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1. What is the easiest way to remove the u-joint from the axle shaft?

2. What is the easiest way to install clip on the new u-joint?

1. At home remove the clips then in a 8" bench vise with a 1-1/8" socket on one side and a 3/4" on the other squeeze until the cap on the 1-1/8" falls out then repeat the process the other way. On the trail relpace the vise and 3/4" socket with a 5" or 6" C-Clamp and a buddy you still need the 1-1/8" socket.

2. Put the new u-joint (and full round clips if using them) in the axle and one cap in place, turn the 1-1/8" around and press the cap in place (watch the needle bearings, try and keep the u-joint body in the cap) don't worry about going to far in with the cap; now put the c-clip or snap ring on that cap. Now due same thing for the other cap, you can put some pressure on the oposite side cap because the c-clip is in place to prevent it from pushing out.
 

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You can do it with a vise, but I've found a U-Joint tool, like the cheap ones from Harbor Freight, make the job a whole lot easier. The first UJ I ever changed took me forever, the next one was easier, and double cardans become easy too after a couple of times.

BroncoJohn pretty much sums up the simplest way of doing it. Putting them together is usually the easiest part. If the UJ has a grease nipple on the cross, on some shafts you have to pay attention to the location of the grease nipple.
 
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I happened to do my first UJ on Saturday. Getting the old one out was by far the hardest part and we used a vice and I must admit to using a BFH also :grinpimp:

Can someone provide a Harbor Freight link for a good UJ tool?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for all the information everyone. Hopefully the next JK U joint I change is easier than one I changed yesterday.
 

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I just found my next trail tool purchase. That looks so much better then my c-clamp.
 

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Someone should make a install instruction for the site the next time someone uses one of these. I'd volunteer but have no need to rip it apart right now.
 

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It's actually easier using just a small 6oz hammer, and a pair of needle nose pliers to change the ujoints if you know what you are doing. Granted I used to build and repair them professionally 7 years ago, but it's really funny rebuilding a driveline u-joints both front and rear for someone in less time than it took for them to walk into the house and grab a drink of water.

Last trail repair was in the snow when a bronco snapped the rear ujoint on the rear yoke when it wrapped up. Pulled the slip off, knocked the ujoint out without ever touching it, putting the new one back in and got him back on the road.
 

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Those CTM instructions seem a little confusing to me and I read it twice too...once you get one cap (I'll call it cap 1) into place and put the other one (I'll call it cap 2) in, you're supposed to push on cap 2 to get the snap ring of cap 1 to seat enough so that you won't be able to turn the snap ring by hand...got that part. Now, once you get cap 2 pressed in far enough to where the snap ring groove is fully visibile beyond the flat inside portion of the yoke, you put the snap ring on....now this is the part I don't get - Then you're supposed to push on cap 1 to get cap 2's snap ring seated - won't by doing so unseat cap 1's snap ring so you could then turn it by hand? Kinda seems like a vicious cycle to me.
 

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if i'm following your question right....once you get snap ring 1 seated, you should be able to push on it to get the other side in without is coming unseated. once it is in place, it won't just pop back out without you taking it out with something like a balljoint tool. the pressure from its "outward springyness" (i just made that term up) will hold it in place.
 

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if i'm following your question right....once you get snap ring 1 seated, you should be able to push on it to get the other side in without is coming unseated. once it is in place, it won't just pop back out without you taking it out with something like a balljoint tool. the pressure from its "outward springyness" (i just made that term up) will hold it in place.
Still not understanding...the cap is one piece with the snap ring groove machined into it's surface...if you push on the end of the seated cap so you can seat the other snap ring (snap ring 2), won't it unseat the snap ring (snap ring 1) that's already pressed up against the inside of the yoke? Where would the outward springyness come from?
 

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It's actually easier using just a small 6oz hammer, and a pair of needle nose pliers to change the ujoints if you know what you are doing. Granted I used to build and repair them professionally 7 years ago, but it's really funny rebuilding a driveline u-joints both front and rear for someone in less time than it took for them to walk into the house and grab a drink of water.

Last trail repair was in the snow when a bronco snapped the rear ujoint on the rear yoke when it wrapped up. Pulled the slip off, knocked the ujoint out without ever touching it, putting the new one back in and got him back on the road.
K, Imkunfused. Now I'm confused. I'm just not seeing a U-Joint replacement only using a small hammer and pliers. Do tell how...
 

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Driveshaft u-joints a lot easier to replace than axle shaft u-joints? Maybe that is the confusion? Just wondering...as I've yet to replace either.
 

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K, Imkunfused. Now I'm confused. I'm just not seeing a U-Joint replacement only using a small hammer and pliers. Do tell how...
You use some needle nosed pliers to remove the clips, and usually a socket or two along with the hammer to remove and replace the UJ.
 

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You use some needle nosed pliers to remove the clips, and usually a socket or two along with the hammer to remove and replace the UJ.
I'll pay fifity bucks to the first guy that shows me a video of himself removing a U-Joint on a JK axle with a 6 oz hammer and socket or two. And be honest, don't remove the thing, take a die grinder to it then video it, or use heat... I'm an honest guys and this is an honorable bet. :beer:
 

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I'll pay fifity bucks to the first guy that shows me a video of himself removing a U-Joint on a JK axle with a 6 oz hammer and socket or two. And be honest, don't remove the thing, take a die grinder to it then video it, or use heat... I'm an honest guys and this is an honorable bet. :beer:
If someone wants to send me the ujoint (5-760x (I think) ), I'll gladly show you how to do it. The lesson on how to replace ujoints will be well worth it when you dont have to spend $$ on tools to press the caps out. If my shafts were old enough I'd just replace the joint but it's not worth it right now to go buy a set of spicer joints, and I gave away my last 760x when I sold my YJ a few weeks back.

Also it doesnt require the use of a socket either. If anyone is local to sacramento, CA and needs a joint replaced I'll gladly show you my secrets, we can film it, and Woods can donate the $50 to Blue Ribbon or Friends of the Rubicon
 
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