At the request of some friends, I have decided to create this walk-through / guide / how-to for installing Ray's 300M rear axles. This will also help those simply needing to replace boots with new grease. The FSM (factory service manual) does a decent job outlining everything, but it stops at the outer ends (B.J. assemblies) and even states to NOT disassemble them... lol go figure
WHAT: Pampena custom 300M rear axle upgrade
WHY: Some will debate the need for these, but if you like to party, then this is a must especially for high-powered builds.
WHERE: GB (Group Buy) from Dave "My923ksl" or Pampena Motorsports
HOW: Continue reading below
To start, I will compare these to my original, 27-year-old, 150k-mile units. They have seen multiple 8K RPM launches, LOTS of pulls, and 500+whp. With the Panda's new build going beyond this and taking things further, it was a no-brainer decision.
They are beginning to look like a worn TC output shaft lol. One of the boots' grease even contained some dirty particles that I can only assume are from these. Also, you can see that the 300M units do not taper like factory.
To elaborate on terminology:
Circlip = c-clip
(inner) T.J. Case contains "spider assembly" or "tripod joint" with roller bearings
(outer) B.J. Assembly contains "Birfield joint" or Birfield-Rzeppa with ball bearings within cage and inner race
LOTS of towels/rags and disposable gloves
needle nose pliers and diagonal cutters
snap ring pliers (I used Craftsman internal/external set)
rubber mallet/hammer (I used my 'murican made Vaughan 24oz)
bench vise (highly recommended - thanks Larry "RealMcCoy" for the tip! I used Craftsman 6" vise)
flathead driver and/or scribe may or may not help you with the circlip**
Apparently, the OE boot kits are discontinued. Andy had positive results with the EMPI brand. I purchased a complete set of Beck / Arnley from eBay only because this particular listing had actual product images that matched. A few days later, I found this post from 3Si member "striker3" for affirmation. Surprisingly, they drop-shipped directly from the manufacturer. They include boots, grease, clamps, snap rings, and circlips for both inner and outer.
Removal from vehicle:
I will not really get into detail on this since I assume you already have them removed and/or are capable of doing so. Aside from properly supporting the vehicle, the outer ends have four (4) 14mm bolts/nuts to the hub, and the inners are held into the differential with a circlip (need to "tap" it loose akin to the fronts at transaxle). Personally, I did not have any gear oil leak out, but YMMV.
Panda supported on Quick Jack with rear subframe lowered for major overhaul and upgrades all-around.
To be continued...
3/S Street Tuner San Diego's Panda VR-4 - fully gutted w/ lots of deletes! 3094 lbs as of 7/2/19 '10 EVO X SE - AEM WMI, COBB SF, K&N UICP, Tomei Titanium CBE - 300//350 on 91+Meth '04 EVO VIII SSL - CBRD BBK Full turbo, full support, lots of suspension - 350 on Pump-E85 '92 VR-4 - Panda v.3 build - Fully built, AEM EMS S2, MHI EVO3 16G's, and Pump-E85 (for now) "There are no secrets better kept than the secrets that everybody guesses."
Removing the old clamps can be somewhat of a chore especially when caked in debris. If a boot(s) was replaced more recently, then you may find a mix of clamp “styles”
On the Panda, one of the boots was indeed replaced. I also speculated that the rear end had been serviced at some point due to a newer silicone boot/clamps/grease, newer differential support member assembly with OE part stickers, non-seized fasteners everywhere, and signs that the hub-to-joint bolts/nuts were once R&R’d.
Upon removing the inner T.J. boot, you will see the snap ring at the end of axle holding the spider assembly. Clean up that doo-doo butter and remove it for further cleaning.
With both boots removed, you should be left only with the axle attached to the outer B.J. assembly. Eat your Wheaties and prepare to finesse the sh*t out of this. You will either be smooth sailing or struggling… haha
The axle is held in with another circlip. Having it held against the vise prevents the joint from swiveling. A step up for me would have been my 32oz deadblow hammer for installing pistons, but you also do not want to f*ck things up with dents from metal-to-metal contact. Keep on trying… you got this (no homo)
Congratulations! You have discovered Iron Man’s arc reactor… Tony Stark is most proud!
As far as cleaning is concerned, that is entirely up to you lol. Do NOT use compressed air unless you like splooge in your face. Take your time cleaning it by hand and go to third base (giggity) getting that crap out. IF you are a glutton for punishment and want to go the extra mile, then this video will better illustrate how to extract the ball bearings and separate the inner race and cage.
Pipe that grease bag into/onto your cupcake and prepare for reassembly. The axle end with a deeper groove will receive the circlip. I opted to reuse the old one as the included new one is flat and an overall PITA. With the axle positioned, you will see that the circlip needs some assistance and will need to be compressed slightly:
It should slide right in with little effort from your mallet/hammer. Fill your new boot with the remaining grease and button up. Before you attack the inner end, slide the new clamps and boot into position.
The chamfered side of the spider assembly slides onto the axle first. Also, notice the orientation of the snap ring. The ends are between the roller bearings and do not interfere i.e. make contact. Apply grease to the joint and boot and button up.
If you made it this far, then good job! Give yourself a pat on the back and go finish the other one! You ain't done yet...
FSM states that the T.J. boots' distance from end-to-end (or center of clamp-to-clamp from illustration) should be 85 +/- 3mm or roughly 3 1/3 inches to 3 1/2 inches. Use your best judgement here.
Sweet! Admire your expensive a** rear axle set. Be mindful and careful reinstalling them into the differential as you do not want to nick the oil seal. You may need to tap it in with the circlip needing to compress again. For the fasteners to hub, torque should be 40-47 ft-lbs. Lastly, the right/PS axle has a "two-part serration" or longer splines entering the differential (in case you forgot which is which)
For those that are messy AF while working, go clean yourself up you filthy animal hahaha.
Great guide and very nicely written. I'm on the group buy and I'll be doing this when I receive them. So this is definitely appreciated!
I saw and you are most welcome! I was hoping that current and prospective GB-ers would find this useful
Originally Posted by striker3
Nice work on the how-to. Glad to see my digging for part numbers years ago is still being put to good use too.
Thanks! It was funny (long story short...)
I found myself "stuck" disassembling the outer B.J. assembly and did not want to chance removing the end cap or risk any avoidable damage without spares on-hand. With the Beck/Arnley boxes all lined up next to me, I decided to search yet again on 3Si (while waiting on responses from 2-3 friends) and stumbled upon your post haha. Confirmation aside, I decided to share the info instead of wording my own since you posted about it four years sooner. As I stared down, I laughed that the PN's were still the same - or even relevant!
Originally Posted by lawdogg
Nice! Thanks for a great guide!
Glad you liked it!
I was actually joking with Chris @ Rvenge about the resemblance to a worn OS (albeit nowhere near as bad as some of the worst ones) to which he commented that it was just missing the traditional and recognizable wear line/mark. Upon examining the old, stock axles and new ones again, I speculated that the tripod and Birfield joints sat relatively "flush" covering the stock splines (excluding the end section after the grooves). On the 300M units, the splines extend a bit farther, so these exposed splines would allow for a wear line to be identified. I only mention this not knowing what new stock or low, non-abused miles look like...
Anyway, these should be going back in tomorrow after I finish installing the VOLK (VMC) curved upper + lower control arms, 3SX/Addco RSB, 3SX AWS delete arms, and PST 1P CFDS to round things off nicely
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