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Offline wilsonphil

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2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« on: June 25, 2018, 10:43:37 AM »


So I dropped the front cover of an 03 ram 2500 this truck has an AAM 9.25.  I knew it wasn't going to be good when I heard metal him the pan, I have never seen this happen in all the diffs I have worked on.  The adjusting nut retainer and bolt came loose and the gears chewed it up real good, the gears look ok none of the teeth are chipped but Im sure all the metal didn't do the bearings any favors.

Tate, I need the retainer and bolt and some guidance on best way to proceed here, I don't know if the adjustment nut has moved and I have never messed with one of the AAM units, I know there is a special wrench for adjusting that nut.   
« Last Edit: June 25, 2018, 11:04:41 AM by wilsonphil »

Offline Flyin6

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #1 on: June 25, 2018, 11:19:55 AM »
Of what I know about the hardening of these actual gears and bearings, you very well may not have damaged anything other than the nut and retainer which are much softer. I banged the livin' snot out of my gears and bearings when assembling the 4.56 gears and locker into my D-Max almost seven years and almost 100,000 miles ago and did no damage what so ever.

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Offline Flyin6

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #2 on: June 25, 2018, 11:22:11 AM »
It is also very unlikely (in my view) that any adjustment changed since those cap bolts were torqued and thus preventing side load adjuster movement
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Offline EL TATE

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #3 on: June 25, 2018, 11:44:23 AM »
Top is correct here. Just get the new bolt and retainer tab and get on the adjuster nut with a punch. you can't over tighten the spanner there, and the other one is still locked in place, so you're really just re-establishing the preload for the carrier bearings. Loctite is your friend. (clean out the housing though, you don't want to push your luck w/ debris going through the bearings)
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Offline wilsonphil

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #4 on: June 25, 2018, 11:49:05 AM »
Ok sounds good, trying to find the P/N of the locking wire and bolt.  Already did a good cleaning, with fresh oil once I get the parts I will drop the cover again and change the oil again.

This is a high mileage unit 300K and if it wasn't for the damage from the bolt and retainer it still looks real good.

Offline EL TATE

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #5 on: June 25, 2018, 12:46:55 PM »
GM 3977326 for the wire lock. I have some in MN if you can't find them. I'm working on the lock bolt too, but I think it's the same for the 9.25 Chrysler rear, like what's in a 1/2 ton (RC, w150, R1500 etc.) if you have any of those laying around check it out for fitment.
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Online Nate

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #6 on: June 25, 2018, 09:49:02 PM »
Dr Tate to the rescue
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Online TexasRedNeck

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #7 on: June 25, 2018, 10:02:38 PM »
And make sure you have a good magnet in there to capture all the fine particles.


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Online Nate

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #8 on: June 25, 2018, 10:21:08 PM »
Sounds like a good time for a GLO upgrade to that cover
Nate

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Offline wilsonphil

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #9 on: June 26, 2018, 01:24:07 PM »
And make sure you have a good magnet in there to capture all the fine particles.


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All the AAM axles come with a magnetic fill plug

Offline wilsonphil

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #10 on: June 26, 2018, 01:31:31 PM »
Sounds like a good time for a GLO upgrade to that cover

since you mentioned the diff cover, you can see how it basically blasted the cover and almost punched thru.

Offline wilsonphil

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #11 on: August 20, 2018, 11:46:55 PM »
So with any used vehicle you buy you always find surprises, and I found a bad one this weekend.  As I was changing the ball joints on this AAM 9.25 the drives side lower was a real challenge to get out once I got the joint out I saw why.  Whatever shop did this job last time must of gotten the joint cocked, but instead of stopping they kept going and galled the socket real good. People that charge money for doing this kind of hack job should not be allowed to change oil!

Now the new joint is loose in the socket, it pressed easy and i have about 1/16 movement in the socket radially, in other words when I turn the knuckle the ball joint moves.  So the options I have are as follows.

1.  Find a oversize ball joint.(this had Moog installed)
2.  Use a punch and peen the socket, apply Locktite sleeve locker and try to press it in again
3.  Find a new axle.

I will try options one and two to see if i can get it to work, problem with buying a used axle you might buy something with the same issue or worse!   

Offline stlaser

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #12 on: August 21, 2018, 12:10:07 AM »
I'd PM Tate and see if he has any ideas. If there is a larger BJ he might know of it as Randy's sells them (where I bought mine for my SD 60 build).

I have trouble thinking that peening will hold with the loctite. We used to do this to scissor lift table legs when we'd wipe out an insert when boring them to salvage a couple hundred dollar set of parts. It was a band aid at best in my opinion for those parts.

Did they screw up the whole socket or just one side? If it was just one side wondering if you couldn't lay a little weld in there and die grind it back close enough to press joint back in? If you have a 1/16" of play thinking you could minimize that some.
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Offline wilsonphil

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #13 on: August 21, 2018, 12:53:11 AM »
I could also tack weld it in three places but that is not preferred but at this point what do i have to loose, it one of these options or a new housing.

Offline stlaser

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #14 on: August 21, 2018, 07:52:35 AM »
Or just weld on a new inner c versus whole housing swap. I?d try laying a bit of weld in there & get largest OD sanding drum that still fits the hole to profile weld out with a die grinder. Using a small diameter bit would make it much more difficult to profile correctly. Good luck either way!
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Offline Flyin6

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #15 on: August 21, 2018, 08:16:33 AM »
So with any used vehicle you buy you always find surprises, and I found a bad one this weekend.  As I was changing the ball joints on this AAM 9.25 the drives side lower was a real challenge to get out once I got the joint out I saw why.  Whatever shop did this job last time must of gotten the joint cocked, but instead of stopping they kept going and galled the socket real good. People that charge money for doing this kind of hack job should not be allowed to change oil!

Now the new joint is loose in the socket, it pressed easy and i have about 1/16 movement in the socket radially, in other words when I turn the knuckle the ball joint moves.  So the options I have are as follows.

1.  Find a oversize ball joint.(this had Moog installed)
2.  Use a punch and peen the socket, apply Locktite sleeve locker and try to press it in again
3.  Find a new axle.

I will try options one and two to see if i can get it to work, problem with buying a used axle you might buy something with the same issue or worse!   
Weld in material and ream...???
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Offline stlaser

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #16 on: August 21, 2018, 08:22:26 AM »
The other thing I?m going to question is why AAM puts the BJ?s in the inner C versus the knuckle? After all many of these engineers who went to AAM were former Dana guys from what I heard when AAM was launching hard. Dana presses the BJ?s into the knuckles, so if you screw one up you buy a new knuckle which isn?t welded in place.
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Offline OldKooT

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #17 on: August 21, 2018, 09:18:54 AM »
That's a common issue in Dodge front axles. It's not difficult to solve in most cases.

The "moog" problem solvers sometimes are "large enough" to compensate for this issue. You need a press fit I think the spec is 0.002 interference.

A company, I think it's EMF offers oversize BJ's for just such a fix as well.

FWIW on a old farm truck we once welded some joints in with a small tack weld under the joint on each side. Seems to have held up fine although not a ideal solution. Just keep in mind, these trucks chew up BJ's quickly if used on rough roads.
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Offline wilsonphil

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #18 on: August 21, 2018, 10:52:44 AM »
The other thing I?m going to question is why AAM puts the BJ?s in the inner C versus the knuckle? After all many of these engineers who went to AAM were former Dana guys from what I heard when AAM was launching hard. Dana presses the BJ?s into the knuckles, so if you screw one up you buy a new knuckle which isn?t welded in place.

Cost is the only reason, as with most manufacturing company's of that era, they were going the Chinaman/world competition route.  Make a disposable unit that in theory makes it 100K throw it away and buy new one.   

Funny thing is you cannot buy a new assembly form Dodge Or AAM, you can buy all the pieces not the assembly. 

Offline EL TATE

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #19 on: August 21, 2018, 10:56:24 AM »
https://emfballjoints.com/products/emf-oversized-body-03-15-dodge-ram-2500-3500-upper-ball-joint-pair just run these and fuggetaboutit. Tack welds are for hack chevy installs Phil :tongue:
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Offline stlaser

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #20 on: August 21, 2018, 11:12:37 AM »
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Offline OldKooT

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #21 on: August 21, 2018, 12:35:34 PM »
yah Tate those were the ones I was referring to. Spendy stuff  but they work quite well.

All solutions presented are a hack. The correct solution is a set of kingpin inner C's and assorted supporting pieces  :cheesy:
Norm

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Offline wilsonphil

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #22 on: August 21, 2018, 01:18:16 PM »
I agree 100% other than getting a new axle all the above fixes are hacks, I need to disassemble everything and measure the bore to see how bad it is.  here is an interesting read over on TDR,

 https://blog.genosgarage.com/wordpress1/2017/05/improve-your-knowledge-of-dodge-ram-ball-joints/

Looks like the NAPA unit is almost as oversize as the EMF one if they are consistent from unit to unit.

Offline JR

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #23 on: August 25, 2018, 04:56:32 PM »
Some good info there even with it being a dodge.
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Offline wilsonphil

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff Free Spinning
« Reply #24 on: September 03, 2018, 10:52:55 AM »
So a friend of mine gave me a really good deal on a Yukon free spin conversion kit Yukon P/N YA WU-04, this kit was on his 2006 Ram 2500 and he went back to the stock setup because he didn't like having to get out to lock the hubs.

The Mechanic/Shop he uses is OK, this shop was the one that originally installed the kit supposedly 18 months ago.  Most of the parts were in good shape but it seems one side got water in at some time so there was mild corrosion inside the hub.

I CANNOT STRESS ENOUGH THE LEVEL OF CUSTOMER SUPPORT I RECEIVED FROM YUKON JUST FANTASTIC!!  Just a great company to deal with, I needed some replacement items, small things like snap rings and spacers, orings ETC, all the replacement parts came in nice packaging clearly labeled and marked MADE IN USA!!     

Offline wilsonphil

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #25 on: September 03, 2018, 11:12:21 AM »
So Im going to go over and show whats involves in doing this conversion, basically what you are doing is getting rid of the Unit Bearing Design and going back to the D44/60 system that have manual lockouts.

This can be argued many ways weather there is a benefit or not, If you plan on making this upgrade please do your home work and make sure this will be the correct path for you.  This kit is very well made, very straight forward for installation and the instructions(written) are very good .

The Yukon Youtube videos are well let me say this,  I will be starting a Go-Fund me page for Tate to take some cinematography classes!

So the first thing you have to do is get the old crap off and in most cases the knuckle and Unit bearing have become one rusted assembly, why AAM has not ever heard of anti-seize or grease or rust inhibitor is beyond me.  This goes back to the throw away engineering/accounting mentality.  there are excellent Youtube Vids on this and there are many way to accomplish it I wont go into that process here   

Doing that involves removing the caliper, rotor and then the Unit Bearing(UB) and Axl assembly

The last picture is what you are getting rid of.

   
« Last Edit: September 03, 2018, 03:51:12 PM by wilsonphil »

Offline wilsonphil

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #26 on: September 03, 2018, 11:29:41 AM »
If you do this you should of already checked your ball joints because this would be the best time to replace them. 

Also you will need 2ea new U-joints because you have to change the outer shafts that come with the Yukon kit, U-Joint choice will depend on use and how much money you want to spend, Yukon makes a very nice unit if you want extreme duty.  I choose the Moog greasable route.  There are 2ea "shims" you have to have in place when you install the retaining clips for the U-joint caps makes sure they are in-place before you press the caps!   

So once you get everything apart, cleanup the rust on the knuckle and apply a liberal coat of Anti-seize,

After you have the axle shafts reassembled with the new U-joint reinstall them back into the axle housing.  Next you will install the new spindles, these are almost identical to the old D60 spindles only difference is there are only 4ea bolts holding them to the housing and the bracket for the ABS sensor, everything is straight D60 parts.

NOTE the dust shield get bolted between the spindle and axle housing please pay attention to which way you mount it.   
« Last Edit: September 03, 2018, 11:45:58 AM by wilsonphil »

Offline wilsonphil

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #27 on: September 03, 2018, 11:33:26 AM »
So after all that is complete the next step is to install the Hub and bearings, nuts, torque per instructions.  Again this is almost identical to D60 install.

Offline wilsonphil

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #28 on: September 03, 2018, 11:39:23 AM »
Then the lockouts go on, the Yukon lockouts have ZERO plastic parts they are all metal construction very well made, very good installation instructions also(written).   After you have the lockouts installed do a functional test and then install the Rotor , caliper and wheel and take it for a drive.

Offline wilsonphil

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #29 on: September 03, 2018, 11:56:35 AM »
Observations,

1.  Kit is very well made and has everything you need to do the conversion EXCEPT the u-joints.
2.  The spindle is not plated but the hubs are, my units were very rusty for only being on for 18 months.
3.  The ABS sensor bracket is also bare Aluminum and is bolted to the spindle with steel fasteners, Anti-seize/rust inhibitor is you friend!
4.  The hubs are much beefier than the original D60 units.
5.  The new Hubs stick out past the wheel, keep this in mind if you doing a lot of off road it could be an issue depending on the trails you do.
6.  So far I have about 500mi on the conversion and all seems well, cant really tell much difference yet as far as MPG but will update on results.   

Offline JR

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #30 on: September 03, 2018, 01:24:51 PM »
Nice little writeup. Yep, Tate needs to liven up on the vids a tad. Gets the point across though.
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Offline stlaser

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #31 on: September 03, 2018, 05:10:03 PM »
Nice writeup.

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Offline wilsonphil

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #32 on: September 03, 2018, 08:34:40 PM »
Update on the lower ball joint socket. I wanted everyone to see how bad the socket was so you know what I was up against. As you can see from the attached picture they did a number on the socket. I cleaned up the socket best as possible and de-greased the socket, very lightly scuffed up the socket surface.  I mixed up a small amount of the epoxy to fill in the gouge areas and then cleaned once more and applied the primer to the socket and to the ball joint housing and then the epoxy.  Next I applied primer to the ball joint housing and then the retaining compound, then pressed the joint into the socket.

I ordered one of the EMF lower units its the oversize body and is rebuildable.

Pressed in real nice and as of right now no movement, Ill give it 24hrs before I drive so everything gets to full strength.  For future the ball joint housing should never have to come out, just change out the internals an everything will be back to new.   

1.  Locktite EA 3476 Structural Epoxy
2.  Locktite SF 7649  Primer
3.  Locktite 660  retaining compound

 

Offline Flyin6

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Re: 2003 Ram 2500 front diff
« Reply #33 on: September 04, 2018, 10:51:03 AM »
That epoxy is the real deal. I'd think that is a permanent repair. Having used it on some challenging applications, like when I repaired a puncture in the tractor's intercooler, I have seen zero degradation or failure.
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