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Fixing the Spicer UD60 Front Axle on our Jeep Gladiator & Review

Fixing the Spicer UD60 Front Axle on our Jeep Gladiator & Review

All right guys, let’s get that front axle
on the Gladiator fixed! Hey everybody, I’m Bubba with Exodus Jeeps and we build badass Jeeps! Now today we’re gonna do a little update on the Gladiator. As you
guys know, a few months ago we took it out wheeling for the very first time and
within a few hours we ended up breaking the driver’s side axle shaft here…
ANNOUNCER: Previously on Exodus Jeeps… BUBBA: Alright so we just got done driving off the top of “Smokin’ Butthole” … yeah it’s the name of the trail. So we took the truck up to the
top and we started to coming down. Somehow, I don’t know how, but we ended up in that crack with the driver front wheel here. As a result, broken U-joint.
It didn’t feel like we were stuck at all. It just felt like we kind of fell into a-
much like any ledge you fall off of. Looks like we lost the u-joint here in
the front connecting the axle shaft to the stub
shaft that drives the outer wheel here. Here the the ears for the u-joint are
bent out and the axle shaft here, inner- axle shaft is actually broken. I guess we’ll see what Spicer says about the warranty on these axles. Now originally when we tried
to get it warrantied, Spicer denied the warranty. WAYNE: Do we have your word?
BUBBA: and in fact, they never did honor the warranty. WAYNE: Because that’s the fun of it! BUBBA: They just said we were “abusing the axle” DR. PHIL: That’s a complete load of crap!
BUBBA: Whatever that means. We ended up having to buy the axle shaft
itself. Originally they told us it would take some 90-something days to get the
axle shaft, so we just gave up on it. Lo and behold, about three to four weeks
later, the replacement axle shaft actually did show up, but we’ve been so
busy with so many other builds and projects going on the shop, we just
haven’t had time to install it. And now, it is right before Christmas, as we’re
videoing this, it’s a little bit slow in the shop and we got some time today. So we’re gonna go ahead and swap this out and we’re gonna show you guys actually how easy it
is. Now some of you might think it’s more complicated than what
what it looks like, but to be honest with you, we’re gonna show you the
down-and-dirty, quick way to replace the axle shaft assembly today and get this
thing back in 4-wheel mode- and not just three wheel. So let’s get started. So the
first thing we’re gonna do is take the tire and wheel off. After that, we’re gonna
lower the Jeep back down on a jack stand- a little bit higher than if it was just
sitting level. The reason we’re doing that is to put the axle on an incline like this and
have all oil go to the passenger side of the diff. That way when we pull the shaft
out we don’t lose any oil. Next I’m gonna take a 9/64ths Allen wrench and remove the six bolts here on the locking hub. Once I take that off we’ll show you in a second,
but there’s a snap ring on the end of the stub shaft, we’ll take that off. Once
we get all this off, you’ll see there’s about four nuts holding the
entire spindle hub to the steering knuckle. Once we take those four nuts off,
because we took the snap ring off the end of the shaft, we would just pull the
whole bearing assembly off of the steering knuckle, without having to disturb any of
the preload on the spindle bearings in here. So it’s real important that you
don’t just start taking everything apart just to change the axle shaft assembly.
It’s really just as simple as this. I’m gonna get started taking these off, then
Blake’s gonna jump over here and pull the brake caliper off of the steering
knuckle so that we could get that rotor off. Get to the nuts holding the whole
spindle assembly on the steering knuckle, then we can get into
changing out the shafts. We got the snap ring off the end of the
shaft right here and Blake has removed the six nuts that hold the spindle
assembly to the steering knuckle. So I just gave it a little tap *BOOP* and the stub
shaft fell out. So now we’re gonna pull this off and start swapping shafts out.
The dust shield is in the way. Get that screw driver here…
pry that guy up. Oh my gosh! Look at that. The ears on the stub shaft were so bent.
In fact, I’ve taken this out before. You’re gonna see in a minute when I pull
the inner shaft out, before I could get it, I had to go in with a grinder and a cutting disk and essentially cut the ears off of the inner shaft. Stick a pry bar
back there and pull this guy out. And there you go. You see, we had to cut it. Yeah it’s
not a super big common failure, but it does happen every now and then. These U-joints do fail. Typically, you get stuck in a crack or something like that
and some really sticky rocks… probably turned at the same time SQUIRRELLY DAN: …allegedly… and you give a little acceleration and boom, U-joint breaks. WAYNE: I’m also the guy that would never admit that sort of thing. Usually takes a shaft out with it so there’s not much you can do to stop it from happening. Now that we’ve got those out, we’re going to throw in the new shaft and get everything put back together. Alright, Blake. Careful with that ABS wire. All right hold
that up and get these started. Pretty reasonably priced parts, too. I think this whole axle
assembly- both shafts and U-joint are less than $300 bucks. So it’s not the end
of the world if they break. Well at least on the driver’s side.
Pretty short shafts, so they’re not that expensive, but as you can see, it’s not a
terribly complicated fix. If it happens. It’s real important- you want to make sure
that that ABS wire is pulled up all the way in here when you’re tapping that
back down because you don’t want to get it caught out here in any of this rotating
assembly. While Blake finishes that, I’m going to put the snap ring back on to the end of the shaft here. In order to get the snap ring on, I need to make sure that the
groove is exposed. In order to get that, I stuck a screwdriver back here
between the housing and the inner shaft and pried it out a little bit this way
because it was stuck back inside a little bit. And that’s basically what the snap ring
does, is it keeps the shaft from flipping around too much and hitting the
housing when it is rotating. So separate that. Getting this snap ring spread apart
and on the shaft. It helps to have your screwdriver handy. Push it back there and hold it in that groove. All right, now I know it’s really hard to
see what we’re doing in there, but look at the shaft before you insert it, and that
you’ll get a pretty good look at what’s going on. At the end of it you could tell
about where the depth of that groove is. But basically that’s a coiled snap ring
so you’re gonna just kind of, unspring it a little bit, get it unwound. Just a little bit, not too much. You don’t wanna damage it. You’re gonna
kind of work it in there. Get it started in that groove and as you get it started
then you just kind of… maybe even have a couple of screwdrivers, but you’re gonna
want to have one handy just to hold it in the groove, and kind of hold it, keep it
from popping back out. Then you’re gonna slowly wind it into that groove. It’s
really hard to show you what’s going on there, but you’ll get a get an idea of it
as… well, even when you take it apart, you’ll kind of understand what we’re
doing. But that’s pretty much it right there, as far as getting everything
replaced. At this point forward it’s just reassembling it in the same order
we took it apart. One thing to note is when you put the cap back on, *TING* … whoops…. be careful with these screws. They’re small. You don’t want to use any kind of power
tools on them because they’ll break off pretty easily in here. Then you’ll be taking
everything back apart by a hub assembly. This O ring it’s really important. It’s
gonna want to fall out, too. So as you’re putting this back together, be careful
with this stuff that you don’t pinch any of it. These six screws that hold the cap
in- they do have an o-ring on them. Most of time, you want to replace them. These
are in decent shape so we’re gonna keep them the way they are. But if you get too
rowdy on them as you’re putting it together, you can damage those. They’re
just there to keep the moisture out. Keep the water out, in case you go through low water crossing, stuff. like that. Or dirt. There is just a little
bit of gap there so that you could get contaminants in there if there wasn’t an
o-ring. Also you’re gonna see that there’s three spots here on this locking
hub assembly, here. As you reassemble it, they’re gonna line up just like this.
It’s gonna help you get these these little guys started whenever you screw
it back together. It’s seated nice. Get some of these started by hand. Now I want to keep my hand pushed up against her so that O ring doesn’t
slip out as we’re reassembling and it gets pinched. Let’s take our Allen, start tightening things
up. Just like anything if you can use a star pattern as you’re tightening it, go
for it. And they do have O-rings on them, so you don’t need to get them super
super tight. Anytime you have an O-ring seal, you don’t want to over
tighten it because you can damage the O-ring. We’re going to see if we can get back in here with a torque wrench on these these nuts that are holding the
spindle up to the knuckle. Put the rotor back on, put the caliper on, and that’s
pretty much it. So all right Blake, do you want to see if we can get a torque wrench on these? BUBBA (offscreen): Why can’t I open my phone? BUBBA (offscreen): Siri, open my phone. Hey Siri… … unlock my phone… SIRI: I can’t unlock your iPhone. BUBBA: I hate these stupid phones. Can we just have a flip phone again? … piece of shi… BEAU: Wanna try FaceTime?
BUBBA: Yeah! Let’s FaceTime! No, look! It’s not going. Hey Siri… Call Apple help SIRI: If you need help, you can contact Apple Support. BUBBA: Can’t click on it! Hey Siri… … call Apple Support. SIRI: If you need help, you can contact Apple Support. BUBBA: I want you to do it. Hey Siri call Apple support. SIRI: Here’s how to get help from Apple supp… BUBBA: I’m getting a new phone today, Babe. Merry Christmas to me. Blake is done bolting everything back up not a very
complicated fix. If you were to break something like this, you could probably
fix it… I wouldn’t say on the trail, but
somewhere not too far from the trail if you had extra parts, handy, with you.
As mentioned before, they’re not very expensive. If you wanted to have one on
hand that way you don’t have to wait weeks to get a replacement part for it.
It takes about an hour to fix it, at tops. Myy thoughts on the UD60 axles is that they are a decent axle for the price. I don’t think that they’re the
best aftermarket axle available. They’re a crate axle. I believe that
there’s some false advertising with the whole “Made in the USA” concept or claim that
they put on the crate. I know for a fact that a lot of components of
these axles are not made in America. They’re probably assembled here, but
they’re not made here 100%. You know, is that a big deal? A lot
of stuff nowadays is like that, so the problem with that being is, when our
shaft failed, there were not any available in the United States. It took a few weeks
to get a replacement part, so if you’ve got the funds at hand, and you’re fine running the UD60s, you might want to have extra parts laying around, available in case it does break. But
yeah, all in all, I think there are some better axles available, but for the price point
they seem to get the job done. That’s it for this video.
Welcome to 2020! If you guys have anything that you want to see that we
haven’t covered yet, do me a favor- email me, leave something in the comments, whatever you got to do to let us know, do it. We’ll do our best to make a video on
that and see you out on the trails. FAN: Don’t miss any of Bubba’s adventures, build and tips. Click here to subscribe. Click here to watch another video! BUBBA: … stay tuned…

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8 thoughts on “Fixing the Spicer UD60 Front Axle on our Jeep Gladiator & Review

  1. It’s the crack that will always get ya 😂😂 that’s a lot easier than I thought thanks for sharing good stuff

  2. How the hell can they say abuse when they build them for offroad purposes? In your opinion, if you were to go with other axles, what would it be? I may be looking at swapping on my Gladiator. Great video.

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