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CV shaft question

10-02-2012, 11:37 PM
I've broken a couple CV shafts in my car (see sig. for explanation). EVERY shaft I've ever got for it had the inner boot on the left side clamped in the wrong spot (an easy enough fix, but a bit annoying). I got a replacement for it today, installed it, took it for a test drive, and parked it until I was off work (about 4 hours). When I went to leave for home, I turned and heard a popping noise and the car jerked. The CV shaft I installed was apparently too short, not just where the boot clamped on, but the shaft itself. It was riding right on the edge of the inner tripod joint and turning the steering wheel pulled it out far enough that the rollers could jump to the next groove. Why I was able to drive it half a mile earlier in the day, going the exact same way I did leaving this evening, and have it fail later is a mystery to me, but not really a big concern. I looked at the old one, and it appeared the rollers in the inner joint were riding pretty much in the center, so I think the alignment of everything is ok.

I'm seriously thinking about spending the money on performance CV shafts, but I need to go with a cheap one for now because I'm not exactly rolling in cash at the moment. Has anyone else ran into the boot problem before? I'd like to get one I don't have to modify. The ones that were clamped wrong were GSP (x2), the Advance Auto brand, and the Auto Zone brand. The one I got today was O'Reilly brand.

For anyone who read my control arm post, the difference in length is about 3/8", and by looking at the wear in the old joint, I'd say I could go another 1.5" out on that shaft. I also took my car to the drag strip and raced 3 times (1/4 mile), plus about 240 miles of driving there and back, then there and trailering it back when the shaft broke during burnout prior to what would have been my first race of the night.

10-04-2012, 09:31 PM
Problem solved! Hopefully this helps someone else.

I looked at my old inner joint under better light, and the bearings were actually going over the edge of the joint. Shiny right up to the edge.

After searching and searching, I found that (nearly) all auto parts stores have incorrect information on the CV shaft. They show 95-2003/2004/2005 as the same. In 2000, the length of the shaft was increased slightly. The shorter shafts from the older cars fit in, but the bearings in the inner joint just about slide out when installed in a 2000-2005. The correct GSP part number for this shaft is NCV10603 (LH) or NCV10604 (RH). Omit the "N" prefix for a remanufactured shaft. I had to look through the GSP catalog myself to find this. Many parts stores can cross reference part numbers if you have a preferred brand. Whatever you get, make sure it lists 2000+ as the year range!

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