Front Drive Prop U Joint

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conrad1468
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Front Drive Prop U Joint

Post by conrad1468 » Fri Oct 24, 2014 11:36 am

Hello Gang,

One of my front prop's U joints is all rusty and grease won't get packed into the U joint. It's the U joint at the front connected to the drive axle. Plus once I hit the highway it starts humming. I've had the wife use the truck around town only until I have time to work on it. Which is going to be this weekend.

I already bought a U joint with grease fitting to match the other U joints that look good and grease up nicely.

My question is where can I buy the little rubber cap locally that goes on the prop? Here's a picture of the seal on a prop. If I order one online it'll be an arm and leg.
http://www.okierover.com/techtips/disco ... wfront.jpg

Another question. Should I put a permanent zerk fitting in the drive shaft like the above picture?

I'll keep ya guys updated on this new adventure. I've never changed a U joint. So it should be fun! haha!
Cory and Sheri
04 Discovery 2 SE (soon to be rust bucket)
62 Series 2A Station Wagon (rust bucket)
99 Discovery I - sold

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dcarr1971
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Re: Front Drive Prop U Joint

Post by dcarr1971 » Fri Oct 24, 2014 4:32 pm

Does the shaft not have a zerk fitting already? If you can, I would say do it.

More importantly, I strongly recommend that you stop driving the truck until you are about to replace all of the ujoints and the centering ball. If the front one is bad, the rest probably aren't much better. If the bad ujoint goes, you are likely to punch a hole in the side of the transmission.

That said, changing the centering ball can really suck. After doing it twice, I've decided that the cost of simply replacing the whole shaft is money well spent. I know a number of suppliers are selling replacement front drive shafts now...Check them out...Lucky8LLC.com, Atlantic British, Rovers North, Will Tillery, etc...

If you're ever considering offroading the truck, you could also check out Tom Woods for the front drive shaft replacement. I can tell you that their drive shafts also have grease zerks on the centering balls so you can keep every moving part on the ds lubed...

RE: that boot on the slip joint. I've never found just that specific piece for sale, and I did actually look a couple years back. I suspect that a drive shaft shop would be able to supply one pretty easily. If you're in the South or west of the city, Island Spring and Driveshaft is a pretty good place to try. They're easily accessible on Neville Island, not too far off i-79.
Dave C
1997 Disco 1 LE <- Stock (?!?) because it may need a block
1999 Disco 2 <-- Not leaking, just marking my driveway as its own since June 2010!
1996 Disco 1 <-- Crazy Red (sold) :cry:

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conrad1468
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Re: Front Drive Prop U Joint

Post by conrad1468 » Sat Oct 25, 2014 11:43 am

I agree. Replacing the whole drive shaft with a rebuild one is the best way to go. I'm saving up for one. So replacing the nasty U joint is my option right now. I kind of liking the GBR Drive shafts part number GBR 0304.
http://gbrutah.com/cs_drivetrain_driveshaft.html

I made some head way yesterday night. Getting the bolts loose was pretty difficult. One of the bolts near the transfer gas was completely loose. Plus most of the bolts are different. Some have a full threads, some partial threads and different nylon nuts. So I'll hit the hardware store for some replacements.

Here's the drive shaft. It's a heavy sucker when your laying on the ground. haha
DRIVESHAFT_5.jpg
DRIVESHAFT_5.jpg (63.81 KiB) Viewed 2270 times
The double U joint said is good. Grease comes out of all the U joints evenly. The ball looks OK for now. It all rotates smoothly.
DRIVESHAFT_1.jpg
DRIVESHAFT_1.jpg (74.44 KiB) Viewed 2270 times
The single U joint side. You can see it has different retaining clips as the double U joint. Grease would only come out of 1 side of the U joint.
DRIVESHAFT_3.jpg
DRIVESHAFT_3.jpg (66.97 KiB) Viewed 2270 times
Cory and Sheri
04 Discovery 2 SE (soon to be rust bucket)
62 Series 2A Station Wagon (rust bucket)
99 Discovery I - sold

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conrad1468
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Re: Front Drive Prop U Joint

Post by conrad1468 » Sat Oct 25, 2014 11:45 am

Here is my little C clamp press. IT worked OK. But to get the U joint caps out the final bit I had to tap it out with a hammer.
DRIVESHAFT_6.jpg
DRIVESHAFT_6.jpg (52.6 KiB) Viewed 2270 times
So I got the U joint off. The grease was only getting to 1 set of needle bearings.
DRIVESHAFT_7.jpg
DRIVESHAFT_7.jpg (67.15 KiB) Viewed 2270 times
I got half of the U joint in. It was about midnight and time for bed.
DRIVESHAFT_8.jpg
DRIVESHAFT_8.jpg (50.82 KiB) Viewed 2270 times
Last edited by conrad1468 on Sat Oct 25, 2014 11:56 am, edited 1 time in total.
Cory and Sheri
04 Discovery 2 SE (soon to be rust bucket)
62 Series 2A Station Wagon (rust bucket)
99 Discovery I - sold

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conrad1468
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Re: Front Drive Prop U Joint

Post by conrad1468 » Sat Oct 25, 2014 11:53 am

Here is the drive shaft with just a plug where a grease fitting should be. The Grease fitting from the old U joint is the correct size. So I'm going to replace the plug with a grease fitting. Should the shaft side back and forth smoothly?
DRIVESHAFT_4.jpg
DRIVESHAFT_4.jpg (59.78 KiB) Viewed 2270 times

Should I clean out the grease that came in the new U joint? It seems rather dried up and probably won't let the new grease go thru smoothly.
Cory and Sheri
04 Discovery 2 SE (soon to be rust bucket)
62 Series 2A Station Wagon (rust bucket)
99 Discovery I - sold

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dcarr1971
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Re: Front Drive Prop U Joint

Post by dcarr1971 » Mon Oct 27, 2014 11:43 am

conrad1468 wrote:...Should the shaft side back and forth smoothly?
Yes...it should be a little tight, but smooth.


conrad1468 wrote:...Should I clean out the grease that came in the new U joint? It seems rather dried up and probably won't let the new grease go thru smoothly.
I'm honestly not sure. I would expect the grease in the ujoint to flow more easily when the joint has been moving (i.e.- heated up). I would probably put in on as-is and make sure to pump it full of good grease when I put it back together.

As for the nuts/bolts, make sure you get grade 8 hardware, and you should replace the nylock nuts each time you remove the shaft.
Dave C
1997 Disco 1 LE <- Stock (?!?) because it may need a block
1999 Disco 2 <-- Not leaking, just marking my driveway as its own since June 2010!
1996 Disco 1 <-- Crazy Red (sold) :cry:

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conrad1468
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Re: Front Drive Prop U Joint

Post by conrad1468 » Mon Oct 27, 2014 4:09 pm

Alright guys... The grease in the new U joint came out with no problems. The U joints are all greased up nicely..

I installed the drive shaft last night with fresh grade 8 nylon lock nuts. I took it for a test drive. I drove it around town. It was fine. No wobble. I hit the highway it was smooth for about a mile or 2... Then the wobble was back. :-(

So I got off the next exit and couldn't go above 40 mph without a wobble. I'm guessing the center ball is worn out.... I'm done messing around with it.

The end result is I ordered a new drive shaft from Atlantic British. I was throwing the dice and hoping for an easy cheaper fix. But It didn't work this time.

Here's what I ordered. It looks a lot beefier then my stock prop. It says it's a new driveshaft with 5 grease fittings. Any reviews on these?
http://www.roverparts.com/Parts/TVB000110A

Thank you for the replies!! I'll let y'all know when it comes in.
Cory and Sheri
04 Discovery 2 SE (soon to be rust bucket)
62 Series 2A Station Wagon (rust bucket)
99 Discovery I - sold

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dcarr1971
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Re: Front Drive Prop U Joint

Post by dcarr1971 » Sat Nov 08, 2014 9:57 pm

Did you check out Tom Woods? I know mine was beefier, and cost less than $400...
Dave C
1997 Disco 1 LE <- Stock (?!?) because it may need a block
1999 Disco 2 <-- Not leaking, just marking my driveway as its own since June 2010!
1996 Disco 1 <-- Crazy Red (sold) :cry:

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conrad1468
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Re: Front Drive Prop U Joint

Post by conrad1468 » Sat Dec 06, 2014 2:00 pm

Hello Guys!!

Sorry for the very slow reply. It's been a busy around the house.

So I received the driveshaft in the above link. The parts number is TVB000110A which is for 99-2002 Discovery. I have a 2004. So I called Atlantic British and sent the driveshaft back for the correct drive shaft which is TVB000320A.
http://www.roverparts.com/Parts/TVB000320A

After 2 weeks of messing around I finally got my correct new drive shaft. I have to say the build quality is great..

So I replace the front drive haft with the fancy new one. The wobble is still in the front or does it feel like it's in the rear?!?! I don't know. So saga continues...

Pictures of the OE driveshaft and 320A driveshaft from AB
New Front Driveshaft Comparision_1.jpg
New Front Driveshaft Comparision_1.jpg (62.63 KiB) Viewed 2184 times
New Front Driveshaft Comparision_2.jpg
New Front Driveshaft Comparision_2.jpg (55.83 KiB) Viewed 2184 times
New Front Driveshaft Comparision_3.jpg
New Front Driveshaft Comparision_3.jpg (55.78 KiB) Viewed 2184 times
Cory and Sheri
04 Discovery 2 SE (soon to be rust bucket)
62 Series 2A Station Wagon (rust bucket)
99 Discovery I - sold

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conrad1468
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Re: Front Drive Prop U Joint

Post by conrad1468 » Sat Dec 06, 2014 2:07 pm

I thought after I replaced the front driveshaft the wobble was coming from the rear. I think…

So I took the brand new U joint out of the old front driveshaft. And I replaced the old U joint in the rear driveshaft with the new U joint. I also replaced the rear rubber coupler and center bushing. So the rear driveshaft is rebuilt with new parts. The wobble is still there!!

Old rubber coupler
Rear Driveshaft_1.jpg
Rear Driveshaft_1.jpg (42.96 KiB) Viewed 2184 times
Old U joint in rear prop
Rear Driveshaft_2.jpg
Rear Driveshaft_2.jpg (57.1 KiB) Viewed 2184 times
Cory and Sheri
04 Discovery 2 SE (soon to be rust bucket)
62 Series 2A Station Wagon (rust bucket)
99 Discovery I - sold

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conrad1468
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Re: Front Drive Prop U Joint

Post by conrad1468 » Sat Dec 06, 2014 2:09 pm

The rear bushing is a the biggest pain in the butt to change!! I have to cut the bushing in half with a jig saw and bend the bushing.

Comparison of the new and old coupler and bushing.
Rover Rear Coupler_1.jpg
Rover Rear Coupler_1.jpg (62.01 KiB) Viewed 2184 times
Rover Rear Coupler_2.jpg
Rover Rear Coupler_2.jpg (59.13 KiB) Viewed 2184 times
Last edited by conrad1468 on Sat Dec 06, 2014 2:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Cory and Sheri
04 Discovery 2 SE (soon to be rust bucket)
62 Series 2A Station Wagon (rust bucket)
99 Discovery I - sold

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conrad1468
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Re: Front Drive Prop U Joint

Post by conrad1468 » Sat Dec 06, 2014 2:24 pm

I took the truck for a spin after all the above work. It still wobbled. I would say it's more of a vibration then a wobble.

So to make sure it wasn't the driveshafts I took each one off. I locked the center diff. I took off the front prop went for a spin. I put the front back on and took off the back driveshaft and went for a spin. Either way the vibration was the same…

I put everything back together the proper way. So I definitely know it's NOT the driveshafts!!

The next thing I checked was the front steering parts. I had the wife move the steering wheel a little bit and then lock to lock to find movement. The only movement I can find is the output shaft on the steering box. It has a slight clunk back and forth. I'm guessing its the steering box.

I haven't replaced anything else not he truck. I've been driving it with the vibration. The vibration kind of comes and goes. Some days around town driving no vibration at all. I hit the highway around 40-70mph there's a vibration.

Also, I took the truck to a garage to have the wheels rotated and re-spin balanced. After that the vibration is still the same.

After driving it for a few weeks the vibration is starting to become more consistent. I can tell when it's going to happen and stop. I'd like to get a second opinion about the steering box. I may take it to a garage and they'll probably charge me an arm and leg just to look at it.

Well guys here's the latest of the vibration saga! I hope to find an answer someday! haha!!
Cory and Sheri
04 Discovery 2 SE (soon to be rust bucket)
62 Series 2A Station Wagon (rust bucket)
99 Discovery I - sold

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dcarr1971
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Re: Front Drive Prop U Joint

Post by dcarr1971 » Sun Dec 21, 2014 1:19 pm

Keep looking. Mystery vibrations can be frustrating to say the least. My way of differentiating front from rear issues is whether I feel it in the steering wheel (front), or the driver seat (rear).

You shouldn't need to cut the rotoflex coupler to remove and replace it, just unbolt it and move the rear driveshaft.

My experience with the rear end vibrations (before I went to a u-joint rear drive shaft to eliminate the coupler altogether) was that the rotoflex was almost always the culprit. If yours is new now though, and you've eliminated the drive shafts as possible causes, then I'd make sure wheels are all correctly balanced next...after that, I'm not sure what else it could be.

If all else fails, turn on the seat heaters and tell your wife that it's the special "massaging fingers" feature that you installed just for her. :lol:
Dave C
1997 Disco 1 LE <- Stock (?!?) because it may need a block
1999 Disco 2 <-- Not leaking, just marking my driveway as its own since June 2010!
1996 Disco 1 <-- Crazy Red (sold) :cry:

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Re: Front Drive Prop U Joint

Post by disco2newb » Fri Jan 02, 2015 9:22 am

I had a mystery vibration in mine, it turned out to be my tires. A tip from Harold and I altered the pressure between them and tada, vibration was gone. Yours does not sound like the same issue, but might be worth a shot, since you've done everything else it seems.
Mark G
2001 Disco II SE - a work in progress

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conrad1468
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Re: Front Drive Prop U Joint

Post by conrad1468 » Tue Sep 22, 2015 10:13 am

Here's an update on my vibration issue. It was the steering box. I bought a good used one on Ebay. I swapped them out. Took it for a ride down the highway. Dead center and no vibration at 75mph. The whole steering tightened up. There's no more "loose" steering. Which I didn't even notice since the box must've been worn since I bought the truck.

I also replaced all 4 shocks with stock Monroe's shocks. The old shocks had no resistances in them. I could push and pull them pretty easy once I got them off.

Now I have a low speed chatter vibration. That'll be the next thing to figure out. But I'm all smiles for now!! 8)
Cory and Sheri
04 Discovery 2 SE (soon to be rust bucket)
62 Series 2A Station Wagon (rust bucket)
99 Discovery I - sold

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