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I've been hearing this noise coming from the rearend on my 72 Ranchero that kind of sounded like grinding, something like brake pads do when there isn't any pads left. Anyway, I bought new pads and pulled the drums off to change them, and they were in great shape. I cleaned everything up, left the old pads on, and took it out for an extended two hour drive. The grinding is gone but by the time I headed back to the house, the rear end sounded like I forgot to tighten the lug nuts on the wheels. All you hear is a clunk, clunk, clunk coming from the rear end, that seems to speed up and slow down with the cars speed. It sounds like it's mostly coming from the right side. It also sounds like everything inside the rear end housing is loose when you let off of the gas. Not solid like the Mustangs.

If it is an axle bearing, how difficult is it to change out? I hope it's not the third member /forums/images/icons/mad.gif I have another 72 complete 9" rearend I would just change it out with, but the Ranchero happens to be rear coils and the spare 9" is set up for leafs, so I would have to change out the mounting brackets to go that route.

Thanks for any suggestions on what I should look for or how to fix.

Doug

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Definately chck the rear U-joint, though that usually causes a vibration more than a clunk. Wish I could help you some more.

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Yea, I meant to check those yesterday, but ran out of daylight. Definitely NO vibration going on. Just a lot of rythmatic clunking. *LOL*

Doug

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Not sure about the grinding, but the klunk, klunk, klunk reminds me of when I lost a couple teeth off of my ring gear on a pickup I once had.

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In my 65 w/trac-loc I have a chucking sound at coast and at low speeds (<35mph) it has a steady chuck,chuck. I looked in the service manual and It refers to this as when the differential gears loosen up and rub the hub. this his has drove me about crazy trying to figure out. I also felt as if I have a bad axle bearing as the sound comes more from the right side as I hear it. But sound will follow the axles and fool you. I guess I will pull the 3rd member and check.
Steve

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Typically, a throbbing-grinding kind of noise that gets worse over time would be a rear wheel bearing, especially if it can be isolated to one side of the car. You should be able to hear a real bad one by jacking up the rear and listening to the bearing as you turn the wheel. I used to think you could drive the car and endure the noise until it got so bad that you fixed it. However, a few years ago one rear wheel bearing started to make a little noise in my 67 coupe, but I kept driving it to the local cruises anyway. Coming home one day, at about 35 MPH the rear axle just locked up abruptly and threw the car completely sidways. I couldn't even get it completley on the shoulder as the rear wheel would not turn. I'm glad that I wasn't going any faster or close to any other vehicles. We promptly fixed the bearing.

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Didn't get the lugnuts quite tight enough?

A rear wheel bearing will usually make a sort of repeated crunching noise. Put it up on jackstands and fire it up. You should be able to hear the bearing making noise very easily.

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I remember a buddy of mine mentioned he had a funny noise in his '66 Poncho. I rode in the back seat and stuck my head out on each side as he drove and when I listened to the right rear I heard "crunch-crunch-crunch..." It was the rear axle bearing.

We confirmed this by removing the rear axles and little balls from the shredded bearing rolled out.

Long before this stage though, a bear starting to fail will make a roaring-wowing sound.

Regards,

Dean T

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Hey thanks Dean! That's exactly what mine did also a few months back before I parked it for 3 months. It was making the same sound you mentioned, now all it does is clunking during axle rotation like a ball bearing is missing in one of the sections.

So how difficult is it to replace an axle bearing? What's involved?

Thanks

Doug

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Whoops, that's bearing, not bear - they make a different sound, especially if it's a mom and one is playing with her cub! *G*

I think you have to remove the brake hardware then with the trans in neutral and the parking brake off, rotate the axle until the hole in the flange lines up with one of the nuts holding the axle bearing plate on the the backing plate. Use a a socket on an extension to remove the nuts. The axle should pull out - especially if the bearing is shredded! A machine shop will need to press the collar and old bearing (what's left of it) off the axle and press a new one and the collar on. My buddy wasn't so lucky, his axle was too small for a new bearing to be pressed on - had to get another from a donor car.

Anyway, replace the axle oil seal and slide the axle back in, carefully avoid dragging the shaft on the seal and make sure the axle engages the differential.

I hope your particular carrier doesn't have C clips. I don't think 9" 'ers ever had them but I'm only familiar with the one on my parent's '65 Wagon.

Hope that helps,

Dean T

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