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Mattijs

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Reply with quote  #1 
Hi everyone, 

  I seem to recall a thread on this forum about Atlas wheel bearings, but I cannot find it any more. I also thought I replied in the thread, but no post from me either. Strange.

  Anyway, I have the heavy-duty atlas axle (off a Cortina?) and the right bearing has been leaking for a while now. Or, more accurately, the last three wheel bearings I installed have leaked. Apparently good bearings are now impossible to get.

  First I got a set from my local motor factors. Then I got a pair from Burton Power. These were exactly the same no-brand bearings as the from the motor factors, though, same numbers and all. Just a higher price...

  I contacted Fostek, but they said they could not get proper bearings any more either, so they machine the axle to allow for installation of separate oil seals. Cost: about a grand. Road & Race also could not get hold of anything resembling a quality wheel bearing either.

  So, what to do? Do other people still have an Atlas axle on their Super Six? And if so, are you just waiting for it to go wrong, or is there something I can do?

  Thanks,
  Mattijs



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Gazza

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Reply with quote  #2 
Hi Mattijs,

A friend of mine had a similar issue with his Tiger Super 6 and had fitted a number of Bearing / Seal kits which would work for about 4 - 6 months before starting to leak again with the danger of the oil getting onto the brake shoes.

He ended up getting another Rear Axle off Tiger Racing and getting them to fit it for him.

I know getting Tiger Racing to fit the axle for you is going to be out of the question but they could ship one to Belgium for you.

They ended up swapping over the drive shafts from the original axle as they had already been drilled. This also meant that the axle was a bit easier and lighter to feed through the rear of the car when fitting.

Simon has not had any further issues since doing this.

Best Regards,

Gazza 

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Mattijs

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Reply with quote  #3 
Hi Gazza,

  Belgium? Don't let the name fool you, I'm in Horsham [wink] This axle actually came from Tiger originally, bought by Kev after starting quite a few threads on this very forum. My bearings don't even last 4 - 6 WEEKS, and my right rear drum is an oily mess permanantly. Car still brakes pretty straight, but it's not great. or safe. or MOT-approved...

What do you mean by 'the drive shafts had already been drilled'? And they gave him a new axle, but with his old drive shafts in it? If so, the old drive shafts with the old bearings?

  Thanks,
  Mattijs


  

  
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Dick

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Reply with quote  #4 
They drill the drive shafts and brake drums so you can use 100 pcd wheels front and back VW fitment
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robcod3

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Reply with quote  #5 
I was talking to Paul only a few weeks ago about this. He's going to change my seals when they get worse as not too bad for now. They also have some brand new diffs. Be worth giving him a call for suggestions
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Mattijs

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Reply with quote  #6 
Yes, I'll give Tiger a ring. Thanks!
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Gazza

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Reply with quote  #7 
Hi again Mattijs,

Sorry for thinking you were in Belgium......

The Tiger Super 6 was fitted with VW Golf hubs at the front and Ford Cortina axle at the rear. So to save having 2 types of wheels / stud patterns on the one car Tiger Racing redrilled the Brake Drums / Back plates and Drive Shafts.

You then got a bag of new studs that had to be hammered into place as part of the build.

If you speak to Paul at Tiger Racing about a new back axle the easiest thing to do is swap your drive shafts which are already drilled over to the new axle with the new seals and bearing kit which they have in stock.

The axle will come with all the required brackets in place and just needs to be painted if you want.

As I said my friend Simon was having the same issue as you on his Super 6, but this is now fully resolved / repaired and hasnt been a issue since. 

The problem on Simons car appears to have been where the Bearing / Seal located into place on the rear axle and would move around.

The problems you are having appear to be far worse than Simon's.

If you are fairly local to Tiger Racing and can get the car over there I would be inclined to get them to do the job as they can then work off the car ramp to see what is going on under the car.

Paul got the job done the same day including MOT'ing the car and some other small jobs.

Best Regards,

Gazza

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Mattijs

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Reply with quote  #8 
Thanks Gazza, that makes total sense to me now. In that case, my axle must have been modified as well, I can swap my wheels between front and rear.

While my axle's leaking quite badly, the fit of the bearing seems to be perfect. I cannot find any visible damage or cracking of the axle itself. Ideally I'd rather get a quality bearing than having the whole axle swapped. But we'll see...
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Gazza

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Reply with quote  #9 
Hi Mattijs,

Yep, you should be able to swap the wheels on your car from the front to rear and rear to front as the stud pattern will be the same.

The only issue will be if you are running different size wheel widths or tires.

For example I run 185 tires on the front and 205 on the rear.

Going back to the oil leak and bearing / seal issue you have, in order to fit new bearings that are over size on the O/D you would need to remove the back axle in order to separate the drive shaft tubes from each side of the dif.

You would also have to be sure that the bearings you plan to fit are the correct I/D where they are fitted / supporting the drive shafts.

The new bearings would need to be an almost interference fit both on the drive shaft and the housing to prevent it spinning, the other issue is if you machine the drive shaft tubes for the bearings your seals are then not going to fit so the oil which is leaking is still going to be a issue.

You can sometimes over think / engineer things on the car which opens up other problems / issues which in turn ends up costing you time and money to try and solve a simple problem.

Jim / Paul have some Cortina Back Axles that are almost new as they were removed from cars used for rallying and needed a different diff ratio.

Also the price was very reasonable for the parts and for them to do the complete job.

Put it this way when I took Simon's car over to Tiger Racing for it's MOT and Paul pointed out the problem I called Simon with the price for the job and he said to do it.

Simon has access to the parts he needs through contacts in the motor trade but was happy for Paul to do the job with the price he quoted and the car was back on the road the same day.....

Job done and no more leaks. 

Gazza

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BOBW99

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Reply with quote  #10 
Hello  Mattijs

I started the topic about leaking axle bearings a few years ago.

I had to change the axle on our 6 due to crash damage, Best practice you change the bearings before fitting the axle. MISTAKE. I have been through the same story as you have, bearings from the local motor factors, leaked, purchased a set I hoped were a better quality from Burtons still leaked. Since then only from the nearside seems that the crown wheel is forcing the oil by centrifugal force along the drive shaft and out of the bearing/oil seal and onto the brakes wheel and ever where else..

I too spoke to Fostek, but they gave no costs they just said send it up we will machine the axle and fit an oil seal at the diff end ! "how much" "don't know"  I was not doing that!

I part solved the problem by using the sealant as you said in your mail. I used TRU LOC supergasket 733 This is made for the job filling in gaps around bearings.  If you shop around the prices do differ quite a lot.

I have to redo the job every now and again so not satisfactory and I have asked Tiger if they have an axle but still requires the brackets welded on in the CORRECT places, and Tiger DO NOT Have the Jig, but not heard back yet.

All the best

Bob.
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Mattijs

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Reply with quote  #11 
Sorry Gazza, I was talking about 'just' getting a new wheel bearing that can properly block the diff oil leaking into the tubes. If the Tiger solution is to install additional seals into the axle, then that's a completely different and probably much better solution. They basically install a seal close to the diff inside the tube? That is probably very similar to what Fostek are doing, although Tiger will probably be a lot cheaper.

  Thanks,
  Mattijs

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Mattijs

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Reply with quote  #12 
I have an update on this problem. My neighbour said he knew a guy that was willing to have a look at axle. Fresh eyes and such, so obviously I agreed. He also borrowed one of the used cheap bearings. And then he did something I never thought of: he disassembled the bearing itself, which is actually quite easy, just remove the rubber seals. And the bearing had no diff oil inside whatsoever, so I was wrong all along: it's not leaking through the bearing, so it must be leaking around it. I then showed him that the bearing fits precisely in the axle, but I actually could push it in by hand, and pull it back out again. So the bearing fits loosely in the hub, which explains a lot...

A a potential fix, he suggested to assemble the whole thing again with industrial strength bearing sealant around the bearing to fill up any space and leave this to dry. If that helps, or even stops the leaking completely, then the oil must be leaking around the bearing. So far, so good, but I haven't really been out since then, because the weather's been less than optimal lately. But I'll keep you posted!
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warthog

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Reply with quote  #13 
Mattijs,

Sounds like you're making progress at last, but I've heard better excuses;

"I haven't really been out since then, because the weather's been less than optimal lately"

it was dry enough last Sunday [rolleyes]
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Mattijs

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Reply with quote  #14 
How about this one: "Sorry I was recovering from the company Christmas party"

Are you still allowed here?
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warthog

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Reply with quote  #15 
It's a fair cop, I no longer own a Tiger, but the AH Sprite I have now has some fibreglass and aluminium body panels, no roof or heater and the back end lets go without too much effort, much like my former Cat E1 and R6............... and its also yellow [smile]
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Mattijs

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Reply with quote  #16 
I guess it's OK then [biggrin]
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