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How to remove front axles -1996 4x4 Locking Hubs?

sebastian323

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I have a 1996 ranger manual trans, 4x4 with locking hubs. I want to remove the axles so I can pull the front diff to reseal it. I took off the hub lockers, and behind that there seem to be two nuts that have a sort of slotted drive . I imagine I need a special socket to remove these. Any idea what it is called and where I can get one ? (maybe loaner at the autoparts store ?) In front of thse there is a thin metal washer and a shield of sorts (i broke the seal accidentaly) I imagine there is a snap ring which holds these on ?

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ericbphoto

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There should be a c-clip holding the splined washer in place.

Yes. There is a large socket with 4 prongs that is used to manipulate the lockouts. Once the lockouts are removed. The brake rotor and bearings will slide off the spindle. Then the spindles must be removed. On the driver side, that will allow you to remove the shaft. It will slide out of the differential. Be prepared to catch some oil once the shaft is out of the seal. On the passenger side, you need to unclamp the rubber boot on slipjoint on the shaft. That will allow the shaft to separate. One half will stay with the differential. It is retained by a c-clip inside, the same way the shafts are retained in a 8.8" rear axle.

 

sebastian323

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On the passenger side, you need to unclamp the rubber boot on slipjoint on the shaft. That will allow the shaft to separate. One half will stay with the differential. It is retained by a c-clip inside, the same way the shafts are retained in a 8.8" rear axle.
I imagine its an internal c-clip and i just need to pull/ pry it off to remove it ? I imagine its a c-clip sort of like this one:

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Also how much torque should I use for the spindle nuts ? Should I just get them good and tight ?
 

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No. The c clip is a typical diff c clip. The piglet has to come off of the beam to remove.
 

scotts90ranger

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Before you try to remove the wheelbearing lock nuts you need to get the C clip and washer off, if you follow the splines from the end of the shaft to the next step there is a C clip in that groove, just push that off with 2 screwdrivers. From there you need a Dana 44 wheel bearing nut socket, they're like $15 I believe. You can only change the diff output seal on the drivers side without pulling the whole diff.
 

sebastian323

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I managed to get the wheel bearing lock nuts off using a 22$ dana44 wheel bearing nut socket from autozone. thanks for the advice so far!


I am now stuck getting off the wheel speed sensor setup. It seems I need to pull this off to get the spindle off. There are two small bolts, both of which I am unsure as to what size they are. I thought one was an 8mm and it wouldn't move and now its a bit rounded off - time to order some bolt extractors. Any idea what is the correct size socket for these?

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scotts90ranger

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It's most likely 7mm, Ford likes 7mm...
 

sebastian323

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On the passenger side, you need to unclamp the rubber boot on slipjoint on the shaft. That will allow the shaft to separate. One half will stay with the differential. It is retained by a c-clip inside, the same way the shafts are retained in a 8.8" rear axle
Is there a way to take the clamps on the boot off and re-use them without breaking them or should I go ahead and break them and replace ?
 

scotts90ranger

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I would just take them off. I think I'm running two #6 clamps together on mine, they're the narrow worm gear clamps...
 

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Hose clamps or big zip ties are sufficient, those factory clamps are one time use.

That stupid ABS sensor bolt has a 12 point head. I think it is 7mm? Don't hammer on the round metal part you see on the front when you're removing the sensor either, it's just a thin metal cover over a magnet.

You almost have to remove the axle beam from the truck to get the 3rd member out. The pinch bolt holding it in place is kind of inside the radius arm and since you have to loosen that up and pivot it, you might as well just remove the whole beam and make it less awkward.
 

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