Saturday, July 31, 2010

Half Shafts

These 2 1/2" diameter half shafts were purchased recently on E-bay and are correct for our 63 Corvette. These half shafts are solid but the parts are rusted tight. It took one full weekend to remove one set of universal joints from one half shaft. Aghh... The shafts soaked in carburetor cleaner during the day and they spent the night soaking in penetrating oil. It took hours of fiddling just to remove the snap rings. They were rusted solid in their seats, none came out whole, all were removed in pieces. Hours were also spent trying to remove the caps. I even bought a hydraulic press and it didn't work. The solution? A bigger hammer. Specifically, a sledge hammer and the willingness to swing it like a blacksmith.
It also took blood, sweat, and tears.
The parts were sand blasted then prepped for paint. Strips of photo paper were inserted where the bearing caps go to keep these areas from being painted.
A little primer followed by cast iron colored paint and they look like new.
More blood, sweat and tears were needed to install the new universal joints. I even broke my vice in the process. Compare this photo to the first photo.
And here they are in their full glory.
Next is our trip to Sturgis with Max and Riva H. When I return I'll refurbish the rear end. I am sure that thing will require blood and bruises. Stay tuned.


  1. Thanks Peter. I am not sure but I think you may be my farthest away fan. There's a couple good friends in Australia but I think you've got them beat. Mark S., what do you think?

  2. Hello from schenzhen china. John, I have two guys that i work with here that are watching this blog now. So noy sure, but your brother may be the farthest away. Ha !!

  3. Great job on the Half Shafts. Are you going to tear the pumpkin apart and rebuid the internals???

    Question about the Yokes in the last do they "grab"...aren't they suppose to have splines??? Looks like they would just spin.....shows what little I know!!


  4. Jim,

    China sounds pretty far but I think you're only across the Pacific about 6000 miles, which is about the same distance as Peter. My money is on the boys in Australia. I need to get a map.

  5. Wilson! (Lester H. for those that don't follow this blog religiously) I am going to refurbish the pumpkin simply because it doesn't have any slop and it turns smoothly. My intention is to sand blast, paint, intall, pop the cover, drain the oil, wipe it down, fill with new oil and add a special additive made specifically for the Corvette's limited slip differential.

    Good question about the splines. All 4 universal joints that make up the rear axle are bolted directly to the pumpkin and the wheel hubs/axles. There are no splines in the rear end assembly. The only spline in the entire drivetrain is at the transmission output shaft. And honestly, I am not sure why they even put one there because both the transmission and the pumpkin are bolted solid to the frame. Go figure.

  6. Hi John
    your blog has inspired me, I have bought a 64 Ex fuelie car down here in Australia and like you have found an almost complete motor on ebay.
    Turns out the motor you bought if it was from ebay almost ended up down here in Australia destined for the car I bought. Go figure that one
    cheers Pete

  7. Pete,

    Now that's a great "It's a small world" story. As you know this motor wasn't cheap and we have yet to start it. That should happen later this fall. Be sure to keep watching and hopefully we will be able to post a short video when we start the motor. Good luck with your 64!