So with a new daily driver acquired, time to get back into the rough of things with the datsun.

The housings, sand blasted, welded, painted and ready to go.

The stub axle, note the outer bearing with the sealed side of the bearing facing the outside world.

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The lock nut (this is the factory style, I thought I ordered the newer ZX style which doesn’t require peening, it’s been too long and I don’t recall If I ordered the factory style on purpose or accident. The lock nut style without peening is 43262-W1200)

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Cleaned up spacer, there are at least 3 I know of A, B, C this is obviously a B. Use the one that was removed from the HOUSING, not the stub axle.

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And the flange adapter. Note the ZX pattern.

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Then the assembly began. This part is pretty straight forward. First start with the grease. I started with throwing a few handfuls of grease into the hub. There are some contrasting opinions on how to do this, some say a little is fine the stub is rotating and it will cast off any excess any way some manufacturers practice this with just a dab of grease near the bearings. Others say to pack it in so that it oozes grease from every orifice. I went heavier then lighter, if anything for the rust prevention.

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Then I packed the inner bearing with the palm technique, take a handful of grease in your palm and press the bearing into your hand. When you see it come through the other side rotate and repeat. Then flip it over and pack it in the other way.

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Next it was time to pound it in. Of course it is important to get these guys to go in straight. After a bit of trial and error (I make sure to use aluminum or brass and a rubber mallet). I found the most sure fired way was to get it started by hand. If you get it dead flat perfect it will actually go in a little bit with just a little pressing from your fingers. Once seated straight, tap in with tool of choice, I happen to have a seal/bearing driver so I opted to use that.

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Next is the inner seal, some people have tried sealed bearings on the inside, but the required inner seal makes that point kind of moot. The trick here is to grease both sides. Ideally the inner side won’t be in contact with anything, but the flange adapter is spinning so if it gets close to the inner seal that can be quite a bit of friction.

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After the housing was greased up, I greased the spacer and packed grease onto the outer bearing which was already pressed onto the stub axle.

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With that done I lined everything up, and impacted the flange adapter onto the stub axle.

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Unfortunately I noticed a hard spot in the rotation. After much searching under good lighting, I found that the dust shield on the stub axle was bent and contacting the housing.

Now I could have let this self machine aka scrape until it no longer made noise, but I figured if it was going to be another 20 years before this is looked at I would rather have it done well. This especially rang true since my transmission emitted an atrocious whine (audible from a couple blocks away according to a friend) which was all due to a bent dust shield. So I took it all apart and pried the dust shield into compliance and reassembled. Smooth operation.

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Then I realized it was smooth, much smoother then the other side. I thought back and realized that the otherside I had just zipped together, and that it was possible that the seal was sitting against the flange adapter supplying excess resistance. I also recalled the story of a gentleman who had used the sealed inner bearing and not greased the seal causing the seal to melt and the bearing to come loose resulting in a tow home. So I spent the next hour trying to smack the stub axle out of the splines on the flange adapter. After trying every permutation, I decided the rubber mallet, my trusty friend, was not going to cut it, so I found a metal hammer, after a bit more hitting I finally freed the stub axle. Just as I thought, the seal wasn’t seated quite right. I smacked it down a little deeper into place and reassembled, to my great relief this side now also rotated smoothly.

Lessons learned:

Taking pictures while assembling things with grease makes you go through a ton of gloves.

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I cannot stress enough to inspect pieces prior to assembly. Especially if it is going to be a hassle to take it all apart again.

Don’t be afraid to go revisit something if it doesn’t feel right.

Don’t try to swing a hammer especially a heavy weighted one when you have grease on your hands.

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Money spent:

Wheel bearing grease - 5

Box of gloves - 5

Subtotal: 10

Total spent: 21545