Join Date: Nov 2000
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Re: replacing inner & outer axle seals on Model 20
Inners are simply pressed into the axle tubes and keep the diff lube from mixing with the bearing grease. You can easily yank them out with a slide hammer and hook end, then tap in new ones with a tube of the right diameter. All this is after you have pulled the axles from tube.
On stock 2 piece axles, the outer seal is trapped between the hub and the bearing. You have to remove the hub from the tapered splined axle. Its on very tight, and has to be to survive. You typically use a heavy duty puller to remove it. Often after its been removed and replaced, you spin a hub and the axle is junk. Either the splines are comprimised or the nut isnt tight enough or both. Thus the benefit of replacing them with an aftermarket one piece axle or a whole 'nother axle like a Dana 44. Outer seal is still trapped between the bearing the the hub, but you put it on before installing the bearing and pressed on retainer ring.
You could pull the axles yourself and take them into a shop and have them do the hard part, removing the bearing, hubs, etc.