R12 Driveshafts
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Thread: R12 Driveshafts

  1. #1
    1000+ Posts REN TIN TIN's Avatar
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    Default R12 Driveshafts

    I had split outer boots on the driveshaft’s on the 12. No problem methinks, I have a few spares that are okay so I’ll whip out the shafts with the split boots and just replace them and do the boots at leisure.
    Now, I thought all R12 driveshaft were the same except maybe the R12G and maybe the R12 Automatic. But no, not so it seems. The offside was no problem (apart from separating the ball-joints) but out it came, new one slipped in, do everything up again, sweet. Not so the nearside. Undid everything as before took a day and a half to separate the ball joints (covered in another post) and eventually got the driveshaft out. The first driveshaft I tried as a replacement would not go in the stubalxe. Greasing, ‘percussive encouragement’, harsh language, nothing worked, it wouldn’t go in more than a couple of millimetres. The next one I tried slipped in like the proverbial ‘finger in bum’. No resistance, easy as you please. Unfortunately, when I took the car for a spin round the block there was a knock/rumble in the shaft and the inner joint appeared to be knackered. Bugger it will have to come out again. Okay, plan B. I bought a replacement boot kit and fitted it to one of the drive shafts that come off the car. Came off the car so should fit back or right. No, when I tried to put this one on Murphy’s Law was in force and the shaft wouldn’t fit the stubaxle. The shaft was from the opposite side and was fractionally bigger than the one from the nearside.
    Now, the question I have is are there supposed to be different size outer shafts or maybe different number of splines on the R12 shafts or stubaxles? I’ve had five R12’s over the last 30 or so years and I’ve never had a problem swapping driveshafts before. Not that I’ve had to do the shafts on all of them. Didn’t matter which side, just grab a shaft and fit it. As far as I can tell, these are the original driveshafts fitted in the factory and should be the same I would have thought.
    I took the liberty of measuring a few of the shafts and sure enough there was a difference between the three that I measured. The one that fit easily was about 22.18mm across the splines, the one that was on the car and was tight but sill fit was 22.22mm, and the one that wouldn’t fit for love or money was 22.3. I wouldn’t have thought a tenth of a millimetre would make that much of a difference but it did (my $40 non-digital calipers might not be reading 100% too).
    Is this lousy quality control or were there different sizes? I suppose at the factory they would have the assembly made up and moved into place on a dolly and then bolted up so if the shaft was stiff they just kept trying different shafts until they got one that slipped in easily.
    Were there differences between say, the early, facelift, and Virage versions? My R12 parts manual only has one part number for the driveshafts and one for the wheel hub so I’m assuming not.
    Could one sand a bee’s dick off the splines so it would fit (or would it be wise)?
    Cheers
    Ren



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    Sand a bit off I'm all for that sort of a fix.

    I have always just swapped them from side to side when they get a bit noisy so as the outer joint wear is no longer in the driving direction. Once I found a shaft, that I took off because it was intermittently noisy, to be a centimetre or more longer than the one I had to replace it. It was off an R17TS which has a larger diameter shaft and a 4 ball joint. However I didn't pull it to pieces but assumed that the noise was due to a problem with the inner joint coming adrift. I actually have a photo some where I'll see if I can find it and put it up on here.

  3. #3
    1000+ Posts REN TIN TIN's Avatar
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    Default Size does matter.

    Update, FYI.
    I got another wheel hub (thank you Angru) and now the same driveshaft that was tight before slides straight in the replacement hub, and the driveshaft the wouldn't fit at all is now tight but could be 'encouraged' to go in.
    Clearly, there are differences in the sizes of both the hubs and the driveshafts so beware.
    Ain't much, a few thou maybe but it's enough make fitting impossible.

    (Or maybe the huge amount of torque from the 1250cc motor has twisted the splines which stopped them going in cleanly).

    Cheers
    Ren
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    There is a special tool that will pull in drive shafts splines onto the hub.
    The same tool is also used push out the drive shaft from the hub.

    Sold mine to someone on Aussie Frogs a few years ago

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    COL
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    Quote Originally Posted by driven View Post
    There is a special tool that will pull in drive shafts splines onto the hub.
    The same tool is also used push out the drive shaft from the hub.

    Sold mine to someone on Aussie Frogs a few years ago
    The tools to pull the drive shaft into the hub is different to the tool that pushes the drive shaft out of the hub.

    These tools come up on Ebay quite often or you can make your own.

    My extraction tool is made from a rim centre with a half inch nut welded in the centre and a piece of allthread with a taper machined on one end a nut welded on the other.

    The tool for pulling the drive shaft in you will need access to a lathe but is not hard to do.
    Regards Col

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    1000+ Posts REN TIN TIN's Avatar
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    Yes, I saw the pull-push tool in the manual and was toying with the idea of making a similar one out of some right-angle bar, threaded rod and some appropriately sized nuts (or as suggested a cutdown R12 hub, I've got plenty of them).
    I hope I never have to remove a driveshaft again so didn't think I'd need one after this job was finished, (yes, I'm dreaming if I think I'll never have to work on the front hubs again. They are the hardest working part of the car).
    In the end it worked out but it could be a trap for others.

    Cheers
    Ren
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    g'day Ren - I have been in contact with a lovely lady who bought a R12 1.4 in 1976 - it is in perfect condition apart from the driveshafts - any ideas?
    sorry but I haven't been a member of the RCCQ for long and haven't met all the members - and if I have my poor old brain will have forgotten them by now
    I took my 10 and 16 to both of Rob Ringes' workshop days and I will be at the first meeting for 2018 at the Junction Pub on the 24th
    cheers
    Dave Tonks aka boleropilot

  8. #8
    1000+ Posts alan moore's Avatar
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    R12 driveshafts available here for 75 Euro each +freight.

    https://www.renault12shop.com/7700535244,-7701348085
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    I have always used a piece of 25mm? electrical conduit force threaded on to the axle thread and pulled it through. Always worked for me.

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    Never had trouble with fitting the new shafts from Renault 12 shop. Just make sure the splines are clean on the hub and the shafts. I did notice they maybe refurbished drives though and done well. There are slight differences with the two. Probably different part numbers or manufacturer.
    Freight was about 70 odd Euro for both shafts.
    “Listen very carefully, I shall say this only once.” Cheers. John

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    1000+ Posts schlitzaugen's Avatar
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    This is quite surprising. Driveshafts and hubs should be completely interchangeable with no problems. My guess is your hubs/drivesahfts might have some mated distortion on the splines. To check for this, you could take a driveshaft out of its hub and insert it coming from the wrong side. My guess is, if my speculation above is true, it won't go in.
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    Quote Originally Posted by boleropilot View Post
    g'day Ren - I have been in contact with a lovely lady who bought a R12 1.4 in 1976 - it is in perfect condition apart from the driveshafts - any ideas?
    Any idea if the car is a low-kay litle old lady owned car? And what has been diagnosed? My thoughts are that if it has been diagnosed as a split boot issue, and an unfamiliar technician has diagnosed the shafts must be replaced. If the car has up to say 130ish K km (and the shaft hasn't been run dry long term), my suggestion would be to replace the boots, regrease, and swap the shafts left to right and right to left. This should give at least another 100K km of quiet operation.

    Reason being is that I've had no end of trouble with dodgy European reconditioned driveshafts, OK, for an R4 not a 12. However, the outer joint of a 12 driveshaft lends itself to all sorts of dodgy reconditioning techniques, from welding, to machining though the case hardening and fitting bigger balls.

    So with recond driveshafts, it is best to know how they have been rebuilt.
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    1000+ Posts REN TIN TIN's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by boleropilot View Post
    g'day Ren - I have been in contact with a lovely lady who bought a R12 1.4 in 1976 - it is in perfect condition apart from the driveshafts - any ideas?
    sorry but I haven't been a member of the RCCQ for long and haven't met all the members - and if I have my poor old brain will have forgotten them by now
    I took my 10 and 16 to both of Rob Ringes' workshop days and I will be at the first meeting for 2018 at the Junction Pub on the 24th
    cheers
    Dave Tonks aka boleropilot

    Hello Dave,

    I'm not in the RCCQ now. Used to be up to about 2003 but I dropped out the Renault scene for a number of years but now returned to Aussie Frogs. I actually replied in the other R12 driveshaft thread. Basically what Alan said and watch Ebay. There used to be a mob here in Acacia Ridge that reconditioned driveshafts but they don't do reconditioning any more, they're just a sales outlet now and they don't sell Renault shafts. They said it was cheaper to buy a new shaft from Asia than it was to fix them and I can believe that.

    Hello Viorel,
    I thought all R12 hubs and shafts were interchangeable too and that was what I experienced with the R12 up until then.
    In this case, changing the hub fixed the issue and the driveshaft (that didn't fit before) slid in like the proverbial 'finger in bum'. I don't think it was a case of the huge torque of the bog standard 1250cc engine twisting the splines.

    I have some used driveshafts that I've been holding in the vain hope that one day I'll find someone that can recondition them. But they'll probably end up in a landfill somewhere after I'm dead.

    Cheers
    RTT
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  14. #14
    1000+ Posts schlitzaugen's Avatar
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    Strange problem with interchangeability, that is. My suggestion was more aimed to rule out one possibility no matter how ridiculous.

    The car's torque need not be huge if there is even a small amount of play in the hub. Metal distorts in time if it has enough room to.

    I guess if nothing else checks out, we have to conclude that some hubs and driveshafts had more tolerance than others so to speak (or machining and QC was crap at the factory, whichever you prefer).
    ACHTUNG ALLES LOOKENPEEPERS

    Das computermachine is nicht fur gefingerpoken und mittengrabben. Ist easy schnappen der springenwerk, blowenfusen und poppencorken mit spitssparken. Ist nicht fur gewerken bei das dummkopfen. Das rubbernecken sightseeren keepen hands in das pockets-relaxen und watch das blinkenlights.

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    Default OMS = old man syndrome

    sorry, forgot to set replies via email and wondered why it was so quiet...

    thanks for all replies, I will be talking to said little lady of many years tomorrow

    BP

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