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GM High Tech Performance
Engines & Drivetrain
Beefing Up The 10-bolt
Moser's 10-bolt upgrade kit gives you the strength to keep pushin' on
Jul 26, 2007
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Beefing Up The 10-bolt
To get started, Mike removed the old cover. Be pre-pared with a container underneath to capture the used oil.
Next up was to remove the driveshaft by removing the u-bolts from the yoke.
Before removing the bearing caps it's a good idea to put identifying marks on each cap signifying right and left. It's very important these are reinstalled correctly.
Next was to remove the center-pin bolt to get the axles out.
Our center-pin bolt was broken, so we had to cut the differential pin in order to get the center pin itself out. It isn't entirely uncommon for this to happen, so be prepared.
Here, Mike digs it out the center pin bolt. This is the only way to get this out if the threaded section is stuck inside.
Now the center pin can be removed.
The next order of business was to remove the C-clip in order to free the axles.
Due to the design of our new axles, we won't be using this clip any more.
Now we can remove the bearing caps. Sometimes this needs to be pried out, but ours came out smoothly with no issues.
Don't worry about the shims, as we'll be using new ones supplied in the kit.
Take out the pinion by removing the pinion nut.
Mike uses a puller to remove the yoke. This can be tapped out with a hammer if you don't have access to a puller.
Next we removed the pinion.
Don't forget to tap out the bearing race on each side.
Next we had to pull off the brakes, since we won't be using the C-clips. This will make sense later in the installation process. If you were to use standard axles, you wouldn't have to do this step.
Next was to cut off the axle seals and bearings while leaving a 1/4-inch lip.
Be sure to smooth ...
... and clean up where the cuts were made.
Mike smoothes off the rearend housing and cleans out the old grease with brake cleaner. Do the same with the axle housing.
Start assembly by installing the new bearing races first. With a bearing driver, be sure they're pressed in completely. It's important to double-check they're in as far as possible.
Grease up the front pinion bearing ...
... and the pinion seal.
Set in the pinion bearing and tap in the bearing seal.
The old pinion shim was stamped .038-inch, but, over time, wear decreased it to .036-inch. The new shims come in various sizes. We combined the shims from the kit to equal .038-inch, as suggested for the kit.
Mike pressed on the new rear pinion bearing.
Then put on the crush sleeve.
Useful tip: Coat the splines with pipe sealer to prevent oil leakage.
The pinion goes in and the nut and washer are installed next.
Tighten down the pinion nut to 15 pounds of drag. The ring and pinion kit recommends 20-25 pounds of torque for new bearings, and 10-15 pounds for old bearings.
Next we press on the carrier bearing. Again, make sure it's all the way on. Just a few thousandths off will cause big trouble later.
It's important to use Loctite on the bolts before attaching the ring gear.
Make sure the ring gear is completely flat before completely tightening. You'll want to make sure the flange is centered as well.
Grease up each side of the carrier and side bearings before you put on the side races.
Mike used the old shims as a reference point for fitment of the new carrier. If the shims fall in they're too loose, if you have to hammer them in hard, they're too tight. If the old shims are too tight they'll break when you hammer them in. They should be snug, but not too tight.
Remember when we marked the bearing caps and rear housing? Here's where that paid off. We used our tap marks from removal so we know the difference between the right and left bearing caps.
Slowly tighten the caps, as they're pushing the carrier the rest of the way in.
This may be the most important part of the installation. Using a dial indicator to measure backlash, we want between .008-inch and .014-inch. Mike recommends keeping the backlash around .008-inch. That's not too tight to cause any binding, and the gears still move smoothly.
Our first shot was measured at .019 backlash so we had to remove the carrier once to get it within our specs. Mike then measured the shims from the kit to equal to .240 on each side.
Tap in the new shims best you can before tightening down the bearing caps. Here we use gear-marking compound to analyze tooth contact.
On our second attempt we got it to .009, which is just where we want to be.
As you can see by using the gear-marking compound, we can tell precisely where the contact is. These look just about right. You don't want the mark to be too far near the top or bottom, as that concludes a weak contact point ensuring early failure. With a few cracks of the throttle, you could have stripped gears.
Now it was time to install the new axles. Mike used silicone on the flange before putting the brakes back on for a good seal.
Be sure to use silicone on the axle bearing too.
Slide the axle in. Remember, we don't use the C-clip in the carrier with this kit.
Next we set in the axle spacer.
The retaining cylinder is held in with the supplied snap ring.
Then it was time to bolt on the rearend housing cover. Remember to use the gasket that comes in the kit, and be sure the load bolts are backed off before tightening the housing bolts. You'll need to torque the mounting bolts to 25 ft-lb, then tighten the load bolts until they make contact with the carrier caps. These should torque down just 5 pounds.
Another tip: Use pipe sealer on the drain plug, filler cap and the load bolts to prevent any leakage.
Mike used the side filler (oil) due to the new rearend housing cap being higher than stock.
With the gear oil filled to half axle height, it was time to put the drive shaft back in.
Tighten down the front and rear U-joints and you're good to go.
The payoff! Mike makes sure everything is working properly.
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