View Full Version : Grinding noise front end

01-29-2007, 03:48 PM
I have freewheeling hubs on my 1962 109. While having the brakes redone it sat in the shop for a length of time with hubs in the freewheel position. Now, when I put the hubs in a lock position in 2wd they make a grinding noise when moving, however, they are quite when locked in 4wd and it seems to do fine. I know the swivel balls have plenty of oil. Anyone have any thoughts on this? I was underneath the other weekend and did not notice any looseness in the front end. Thank you for any help.

Les Parker
01-29-2007, 05:22 PM
Do you mean when the hubs are in 4X2 that the noise is apparent, or when the transfer box is in 4 w.d. high/low? Is the noise definetly coming from the front axle, not the drive shaft or front diff?


01-29-2007, 09:20 PM
I have always understood it is good to engage the hubs (turn to 4X4) at least once a week to keep everything lubricated. I did this after I got it back from the shop and it makes a grinding noise as I travel when the hubs are turned to 4X4 but the vehicle is in 2wd. I especially notice the grind when I come to a stop. They make no noise when set at (2x4) in 2wd and and no noise when set at (4X4) in 4wd. The freewheel hubs were manufactured by Superwinch.

01-29-2007, 09:25 PM
Could be the front driveshaft or diff but I cannot tell. I do know it only happens or I only hear it when hubs are locked at 4X4 and I am operating 2wd.

01-30-2007, 08:31 AM
Could be the front driveshaft or diff but I cannot tell. I do know it only happens or I only hear it when hubs are locked at 4X4 and I am operating 2wd.

Is this correct?

- Wheels locked, Transfer in 2WD = grinding noise

- Wheels unlocked, transfer in 2WD = no grinding noise

- Wheels locked, transfer in 4WD = no grinding noise

- Wheels unlocked, transfer in 4WD = Unknown

With wheels locked and the vehicle moving, the hub, brake drum, axles, differential, front prop shaft and front output shaft of the transfer case are rotating in both 2WD and 4WD.

The only thing different is the direction the force is being applied from and this pretty much only affects the points where one rotating component drives another. I'm not positive but I think the greatest impact would be on the ring and pinion helical gears.

Try shaking the front of the front prop shaft side to side and look closely for any movement of the yolk attached to the pinion gear. If the pinion gear is loose I believe it would try to climb away from the ring gear if the driving force were the rotating front wheels. Mind you this is just a W.A.G. on my part.

Of course I'm a fan of checking the easiest to test, easiest to replace and cheapest items first and work toward the harder to test & replace parts.

So with wheels locked, the tyres off the ground and transfer case in neutral rotate the front wheels back and fourth and look for freeplay. It is concievable that there might be something loose in the freewheel hub or brakes. You would need to remove these prior to removing the front diff for inspection anyway. So check them closely.

Also be aware that there is substantial freeplay built into the Series transfer case internals so don't be alarmed if there seems to be undue rotational freeplay within the transfer case.

Hopefully Les or others can provide you with other possibilities that I might have missed.

01-30-2007, 01:14 PM
If you still have the original hub flanges, put those back on to eliminate any fault in the axle set. If it still grinds with the normal hub flanges, a teardown is in your future. Oh, and don't put the FW hubs back on, they will only lead to destruction.

I Leak Oil
01-30-2007, 05:11 PM
Pull the front drive shaft. It's easy enough to do. Lock the hubs and try it is 2 WD and then 4WD to see if it makes a difference. To me, it sounds like it could be the drive shaft.
Jason T.

01-31-2007, 02:03 PM
Thank you all for your responses to my post. Looks like I may have some work ahead of me. I will let you know how it turns out.

I am not a big fan of the free wheel hubs and may switch them out on both of my Series.