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Increasing CV Axle Life?


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What tricks are you guys using to extend the life of your CV axles?  I currently use CV2 grease, use OEM boots, have capillary vents for the boots, and attempt to get as much air flow to the outer cup as possible.  Anything else I might be missing?  

EDIT:  I'm not seeing failures in of the CVs themselves, but mystery tears in the boots.  I mounted a camera in the wheel wells and recorded during track events, but nothing stands out.  There's nothing even remotely nearby for abrasion or contact to the boots to occur. 

Edited by kcbhiw
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Are you extremely lowered?  This can cause them to wear out a bit faster, at least that is what we found on our Integra.  Our car wasn't as low as others and we added WD40 straws under the boots to help vent them and used super high temp grease in addition to tons of air flow blasted at the CV.  We could get a little more life out of our parts than other Integras with all of that "stuff".

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1 minute ago, Originalsterm said:

Are you extremely lowered?  This can cause them to wear out a bit faster, at least that is what we found on our Integra.  Our car wasn't as low as others and we added WD40 straws under the boots to help vent them and used super high temp grease in addition to tons of air flow blasted at the CV.  We could get a little more life out of our parts than other Integras with all of that "stuff".

I'm not.  The axles are horizontal at rest and the roll isn't excessive.  I'm using basically a brass version of the wd40 straw to vent the boots. 

I should have added above, I'm not seeing failures in of the CVs themselves, but mystery tears in the boots.  I mounted a camera in the wheel wheels and recorded during track events, but nothing stands out.  There's nothing even remotely nearby for contact to occur. 

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36 minutes ago, kcbhiw said:

I'm not.  The axles are horizontal at rest and the roll isn't excessive.  I'm using basically a brass version of the wd40 straw to vent the boots. 

I should have added above, I'm not seeing failures in of the CVs themselves, but mystery tears in the boots.  I mounted a camera in the wheel wheels and recorded during track events, but nothing stands out.  There's nothing even remotely nearby for contact to occur. 

 

Do you think it could be rotor heat that kills the boot?

 

We did modify the heat shield behind our rotors to keep them while still ducting air.  Our thought was this would help the CV/boots/grease/etc. survive as well.

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Our trick came from many hours of searching forums for clues to making these things survive. The offroad buggy guys suggested this and it's worked great for us so far.

 

Backstory: for the last two years, we've been blowing apart outer cv joints at a rate of two axles per race.  We tried repacking with standard cv grease, venting boots, and bigger rotors with more cooling. None of that worked.

 

We tried contacting DSS and they told us they'll make us axles but won't repack our OEM or aftermarket axles.

 

Finally, I followed the advice of several people online and from this series: I ordered some used OEM axles off ebay, and some brand new A1 Cardones from rockauto.  I separated the oem axles and removed the tripod joint from the aftermarket ones since those have cv joints that aren't separatable.  I cleaned out ALL of the old grease using gasoline... This took ages and made a huge mess.

 

Then, I repacked the joints with a 50/50 mixture of Swepco Moly and BelRay anti-seize. And I mean packed it... Probably 20 minutes of smashing this incredibly nasty mixture into the joint.

 

I also added the little brass vent tube when putting the boot back on. I used a serrated knife to cut a small groove in the small end of the boot to let the vent sit neatly.

 

The one other thing I did that I don't know if it had any effect oo not was I cut a piece of rubber to act like a cv saver inside the boot.  It's a little hard to describe, but basically it's a semi rigid piece that the axle shaft passes through but that sits against the inside of the boot and helps prevent grease from migrating from the join towards the small end of the boot.

 

I don't know if it mattered because we've now run three 14 hour races on the repacked oem/repacked aftermarket axles and haven't blown a single one. We just ran CMP on our second set of repacked axles and didn't lose a single axles over the two days of racing.

 

We're calling this the solution, and finally I won't have to leave every race down two or more axles, slightly singed, and covered in CV grease.

 

...this problem was so bad, I literally have 11 axles in the trailer as spares.

 

https://www.belray.com/product/molylube-anti-seize-compound-mining/

 

https://www.amazon.com/Swepco-101-SWEPCO-Moly-Grease/dp/B005I078MA

 

Can't help with the mystery tears. We got one in our first set of axles we repacked which is why we're on the second set now.  Seems to just happen every few races, I'm guessing from all the crap on the track.

Edited by krispykritter
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24 minutes ago, krispykritter said:

Our trick came from many hours of searching forums for clues to making these things survive. The offroad buggy guys suggested this and it's worked great for us so far.

 

Backstory: for the last two years, we've been blowing apart outer cv joints at a rate of two axles per race.  We tried repacking with standard cv grease, venting boots, and bigger rotors with more cooling. None of that worked.

 

We tried contacting DSS and they told us they'll make us axles but won't repack our OEM or aftermarket axles.

 

Finally, I followed the advice of several people online and from this series: I ordered some used OEM axles off ebay, and some brand new A1 Cardones from rockauto.  I separated the oem axles and removed the tripod joint from the aftermarket ones since those have cv joints that aren't separatable.  I cleaned out ALL of the old grease using gasoline... This took ages and made a huge mess.

 

Then, I repacked the joints with a 50/50 mixture of Swepco Moly and BelRay anti-seize. And I mean packed it... Probably 20 minutes of smashing this incredibly nasty mixture into the joint.

 

I also added the little brass vent tube when putting the boot back on. I used a serrated knife to cut a small groove in the small end of the boot to let the vent sit neatly.

 

The one other thing I did that I don't know if it had any effect oo not was I cut a piece of rubber to act like a cv saver inside the boot.  It's a little hard to describe, but basically it's a semi rigid piece that the axle shaft passes through but that sits against the inside of the boot and helps prevent grease from migrating from the join towards the small end of the boot.

 

I don't know if it mattered because we've now run three 14 hour races on the repacked oem/repacked aftermarket axles and haven't blown a single one. We just ran CMP on our second set of repacked axles and didn't lose a single axles over the two days of racing.

 

We're calling this the solution, and finally I won't have to leave every race down two or more axles, slightly singed, and covered in CV grease.

 

...this problem was so bad, I literally have 11 axles in the trailer as spares.

 

 

Great info!  Thanks!

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Interesting stuff. Wonder if we're getting lucky with the Mini or they really are superior. Axles we're using are of unknown mileage, we have done 4 races, some track days, and have never touched them.

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13 minutes ago, mindspin311 said:

Interesting stuff. Wonder if we're getting lucky with the Mini or they really are superior. Axles we're using are of unknown mileage, we have done 4 races, some track days, and have never touched them.

Careful now you know what is coming!

 

We run two miatas and had been running lots of aftermarket junk and would change one axle at least a weekend. In one race change the same side twice in four hours. We got it down as we did it on a fuel stop and you can change an axle in 3 minutes and 40 seconds and still fuel and out in 5.

 

My solution after doing the venting and repacking with good grease is to find and buy used OEM's and run them. I know I too should not say this but it has been almost 8 races with no change.

Edited by 55mini
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When we started racing this thing, we didn't have axle problems.  Probably used the same axles for 2016 - early 2018.  As we got faster over the years, and our brakes got hotter, and our corner exit speeds grew, the strain started popping axles left and right.  Our best time at Sebring in 2016 was around a 3:03 and last year it was a 2:50.  Also, the spread in times between our fastest and slowest drivers dropped from like 25 seconds to more like 5, so more strain more often.

 

We also have a somewhat heavy car at 2750 lbs, and make okay power around 165 whp.  And, it's a late 90s not really sports sedan.  Not a lot of things going for it!

 

Hopefully the newer, more sports-base vehicles don't have as many issues as our 2010 vintage chumpcar.

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Neo HPCC-1 CV joint grease.

 

The best.  All Drive Shaft Shop axles come pre-packed with Neo.

 

https://shop.neosyntheticoil.com/HPCC-1-CV-joint-grease-HPCC-1-CV-cartridge.htm

 

HPCC - 1 Grease

Specialty grease for linear and oscillating mechanisms and couplings, such as constant velocity couplings (CV joints) and sealed bearings.

It will take heavy shock loads, frequent axial movements, large speed variations, and frequent reversing. It is made with a high molecular weight synthetic base stock and will withstand extreme temperatures. It has a very strong resistance to water washout in rain or even salt water. HPCC- 1 Grease is designed for low oil separation under centrifuging. It is classified as an NLGl #1 Grade grease but will react to the amount of shear loading and will stiffen to a hard #2 Grade grease. The grease is designed to "skin over" to create a shell that resists dirt and moisture, but this shell does not in any way detract from the lubricating qualities. For this reason, this is an excellent product for "sealed for life" bearings or large open gears. It is equally at home in dusty climates and very wet locations.

Vehicular uses of NEO HPCC - 1 Grease are typically constant velocity couplings (CV joints) and wheel bearings. Industrial applications include linear reciprocating mechanisms, heavily loaded ways and guides, spline couplings subject to linear motion and heavy loads in either direction, press fit and assembly operations, jack screws, mechanical presses, cable dressings, and very slow large diameter ball and roller bearings.

 

I also only use their wheel bearing grease. 4 years and close to 45 races on the rear wheel bearings without one problem. In fact I never touched the rears.
 

HP 800 Multipurpose Grease

Designed for the peripheral speeds encountered by wheel bearings in racing which are 3 to 8 times that of passenger cars and prevents "channeling of the grease". This grease is slightly thinner in consistency and has a higher viscosity synthetic fluid incorporated in it compared to greases normally used for passenger vehicles and is designed to lubricate to 425 deg. C. (800 deg. F.)

HP800 Heavy Duty EP grease for plain and rolling element bearings, and sliding mechanisms operating generally difficult conditions. Exceptionally resistant to water wash out including emulsions, NEO HP800 was designed specifically for precision rolling element bearings in high performance racing cars. This grease is slightly thinner in consistency and has a higher viscosity synthetic fluid incorporated in its design as compared to greases normally used for passenger vehicles and is designed to lubricate to 425�C (800�F). Special additive technology and synthetic fluids give high film strength under EP conditions with exceptional oxidative and thermal stability. Can be used on sensitive metallurgy including copper, silver, tin, and aluminum, and their alloys. Highly specialized mixed base complex soap structure provides high dropping point, mechanical and thermal stability. Low bleed characteristics insures protection at high temperature and high radial forces.

Ideal for use in high temperature lubricated packing boxes, hot and cold rolling mills, ladle pins, continuous casting wheels, converter bearings, overhead conveyor bearings, also bushings, bearings, and cutter head mechanisms on continuous mining machines. Unexcelled for high speed, highly loaded couplings and splines found in steel mill operations. NGLI grade 1� designed for grease lubricated roll neck bearings and automatic grease dispensing systems. Special applications include NASCAR, Indy car, Formula 1, Rally, Off road, police cars, Highway Patrol cars. NEO HP800 is a good all around multipurpose industrial high temperature grease with exceptional water resistance including emulsions. It may be used in plain and rolling elements.

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1 hour ago, Andrew D Johnson said:

I have gone through probably 50+ axles while racing with ChampCar, going to RWD is the only thing I have ever found that works. 

FWD VW = broken axles or front wheel bearing failure. I am now part of this group changing to RWD.

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Y'know, Some of us are just too stubborn to quit wrong wheel drive.  I mean, we've raced a clapped out contour for five years... We can't admit it's garbage now!

Edited by krispykritter
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2 minutes ago, Team Infiniti said:

Fixedly 

 

Well that too, but there's a saying about polishing a turd....

 

Believe me we're good with it. The axles were the last major issue we had and it seems resolved.

 

Unlike some other cars, we don't blow engines or transmissions or differentials or hubs or wheel bearings. Just shift cables, axles, and fuel pumps. Easy stuff.

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I have always been in a VW and was to stubborn to give up on it (2010-2021)  but decided that I want to see what all this RWD hype is about.  Not going to lie I will probably regret my decision the first race it rains and I am in the car.

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2 minutes ago, krispykritter said:

The axles were the last major issue we had and it seems resolved.

 

Unlike some other cars, we don't blow engines or transmissions or differentials or hubs or wheel bearings. Just shift cables, axles, and fuel pumps. Easy stuff.

Thought I had the axels, hubs, and shift cables fixed... but lost all of them multiple times this past weekend.  The axle even took out the transaxle.  The good side of the VW was the motors would take a beating and keep on ticking.

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17 minutes ago, Triangle42 said:

Thought I had the axels, hubs, and shift cables fixed... but lost all of them multiple times this past weekend.  The axle even took out the transaxle.  The good side of the VW was the motors would take a beating and keep on ticking.

Remount the engine, grab a RWD transmission…

Edit that, put the transaxle Back, Engine in front like a C-5 Corvette

 

22 minutes ago, krispykritter said:

there's a saying about polishing a turd

You’re talking to experts on polished turds.. It never seems to shine tho.

Edited by Team Infiniti
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17 minutes ago, Triangle42 said:

Thought I had the axels, hubs, and shift cables fixed... but lost all of them multiple times this past weekend.  The axle even took out the transaxle.  The good side of the VW was the motors would take a beating and keep on ticking.

 

Yeah I read about your saga this weekend, that sucks. Can't believe the inner joint broke, that's fairly rare!

 

Good luck on the new build! Do you have any idea what it'll be?

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1 minute ago, Team Infiniti said:

Remount the engine, grab a RWD transmission…

 

Oh I have been at the drawing board for a long time trying to find the perfect platform for it but cant make it work with points. 240sx was the closest I got and I still started 1 or 2 laps down. Was having a hard time finding the right transmission.  The 944 was the easy button but it was a 5 lap car to start off.

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1 minute ago, Triangle42 said:

Oh I have been at the drawing board for a long time trying to find the perfect platform for it but cant make it work with points. 240sx was the closest I got and I still started 1 or 2 laps down. Was having a hard time finding the right transmission.  The 944 was the easy button but it was a 5 lap car to start off.

Check my edit

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13 minutes ago, krispykritter said:

Yeah I read about your saga this weekend, that sucks. Can't believe the inner joint broke, that's fairly rare!

That was my 2nd inner cv to break in the last 6 years.  Most of the time it is the outer. I think it has to do with the heat from the down pipe right above it.  that is also what melted the shifter cable and the exhaust wrap on the down pipe.

Edited by Triangle42
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