Front Prop Shaft Replacement - Land Rover Forums : Land Rover and Range Rover Forum
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post #1 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-08-2017, 06:53 AM Thread Starter
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Front Prop Shaft Replacement

Hey guys

I've just ordered a new front prop shaft from Lucky8 and wanted to know if there's anything I need to know about this job. On the surface, it looks pretty cut and dried. But are there any bugaboos or tricks I need to know about? I bought the nut tool, even though I don't know what it's for, assuming I'd figure it out once out and under. Any light you may shed would be very much appreciated.

2004 Disco II, bone stock, daily driver (gasp!)
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post #2 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-08-2017, 07:59 AM
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Yep; I did a whole thread on it which could be quite useful. Let me see if I can find it.

'99 DII Growling sound - front driveshaft?


Successfully replaced front prop shaft today. There were things I learned and a couple of things that did not work but it is in there now. So comments:

1. When removing original prop shaft, never was able to get the old prop shaft to turn to gain better access to the other bolts. Got them out but it was hard. I turned and turned the wheel, no problem, but the prop shaft would only turn about 1/8 to 1/4 turn. Forgot about instructions from one of the guys to place tranny in Neutral - I kept it in gear. Was that the problem? Tried it with emergency brake on and off but old prop shaft just would not turn to gain access to the hidden bolts. So for next time, how do you get the prop shaft to turn enough to bring the top bolts into view?

2. I reinstalled the rear of the prop shaft first. This is easy. The old bolts remain with the drive line and you just fit the new prop shaft (rear portion) over the old bolts and replace the nuts. The nuts always are on the forward side. Then when I crawled up to the front with the new bolts, I found that the new prop shaft was about two inches too short. What the heck? About to panic; ready to call up Lucky 8 and ask them why they sent the wrong prop shaft. And then I thought to pull on the front u-joint. Sure enough the prop shaft was collapsed all the way. Slid the front u-joints forward and then it fit fine. One emergency handled.

3. Next when I got to the front to reinstall, the doggone bolt holes would not match. Got one bolt in but no way the others were going to go; the holes just did not meet up. What the heck again? Lucky 8 again? Took a closer look at the old one and guess what - the holes have a short orientation and a long orientation - they are not evenly spaced. No one told me that. Fortunately even though it was bolted in at the rear, I was able to turn it 90 degrees and got it to fit. See the pic which shows the hole pattern on the front. Sure enough they are not cut in a pefect square; they have an orientation.
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post #3 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-08-2017, 10:04 AM Thread Starter
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I tried to find an article like this before I posted but couldn't. Thanks a lot for finding and reposting. If my shaft arrives before the weekend, I should be good to go by Saturday afternoon. And I'll put everything in neutral!

2004 Disco II, bone stock, daily driver (gasp!)
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post #4 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-08-2017, 01:20 PM
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It is really about an easy thirty minute job if you know what you are doing.

I too have problems trying to search for specific questions a lot of the time.
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post #5 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-09-2017, 06:33 AM
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That basic search box at the top of the page is useless. Try this: Land Rover Forums : Land Rover and Range Rover Forum - Search Forums It's the little link over to the right that says "advanced search"
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post #6 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-09-2017, 06:51 AM Thread Starter
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I figured it would be dead easy. I've rebuilt the Jaguar-type 5-link rear end in my old Datsun 240Z a million years ago, so if that was easy, this should be cake. Famous last words.

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post #7 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-17-2017, 08:37 AM Thread Starter
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One final question on this: what type of grease is recommended? There's a confusing array of greases, each claiming to be better than the next. Just plain ol' grease? High temp?

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post #8 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-17-2017, 11:55 AM
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The best grease is the one you apply regularly. A heavy duty synthetic will serve you well pretty much just about anywhere. It's usually red. The added benefit is that you won't have to deal with that lithium stink on your hands for a week afterwards
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post #9 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-18-2017, 01:42 PM Thread Starter
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Just unpacked the new shafts and greased the Cardone and the double u-joint end but CAN NOT get my grease gun to fit the fitting on the single ujoint. Is there a secret or did I get a lemon? Apparently Lucky8 isn't open on weekends.
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post #10 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-18-2017, 04:13 PM
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I had exactly the same problem. Ended up installing the driveshaft and having my Indy shoot it full of grease.
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post #11 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-18-2017, 04:24 PM
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I have a small diameter tip as well as a needle.
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post #12 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-18-2017, 08:00 PM Thread Starter
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Yes, I went to O'Reilly's and got a needle, which allowed greasing difficult to reach fittings. Worked like a champ.
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post #13 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-19-2017, 04:46 AM
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I had a two-door Tahoe a few years back. The drive shaft was about 2 feet long. It was a bitch getting to the front joint. Somehow, somewhere, I found a 2" long extension. I unscrewed the fitting and screwed this in. Still, I never got more than 30K out of u-joints on that truck. The needle works, but it's slow.

This is the #1 reason I have and always will do my own maintenance. There's no way a quick lube is going to spend even an extra minute getting grease into a spot like that.
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post #14 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-19-2017, 06:21 AM
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Over the last few weeks I saw a post where a guy said that the front driveshaft needs to be greased very frequently because it is near a cat which boils out the grease.

Is this a fact?
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post #15 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-19-2017, 07:55 AM
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It is somewhat near the cat and I'd imagine if you sat at alot of red lights or creep along in traffic it could get warm. But if you use a good synthetic grease, it's going to have a very high melt point. Your brake rotors get pretty hot and they have grease inside them- and that works. Race car brake rotors get so hot they glow.

If you grease your u-joints when you change your oil, they'll last a long time.

Being un-greaseable was the major chunk of the problem. Being a short shaft and having full time engagement doesn't help, but regular greasing goes a long way.
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