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Thread: Differential Backlash Adjustment

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Greer, SC
    Posts
    751

    Differential Backlash Adjustment

    Hey all. I was just told that I have too much backlash in the differentials on my truck. Ever since I bought it the truck has had driveline play (clunk when taking up drive/letting foot off gas pedal in manual tranny). I've owned the truck for 5 yrs now and have put on 60k miles since then and today I had a mechanic at the local shop who used to be a rover tech tell me that the backlash is too much and that it should adjust it. He quickly explained how to do the job and I have looked at the rave cd however, I would like more opinions on how easy it will be to adjust. I've pulled the diff before not too long ago and nothing seemed too out of place, worn, or excessively loose, however, my eyes are not trained in the detection of such things. I am planning on attacking this project this weekend and have done all the work on this truck to keep it on the road since I've owned it; I feel comfortable in my ability to take care of this. I've just never dealt with something like this before so I'm a tad bit apprehensive. Any outline of the procedure/advice/hints would be awesome. Thanks.

    --Justin
    '96 D1 300TDI 5spd Alpine White

    --------------------------------
    DISCO SEAT FIX for a broken D1 front seat!!

    --------------------------------
    "Jeeps may be famous, but Land Rovers are Legendary.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    San Francisco Bay Area, CA
    Posts
    311
    I have adjusted mine for backlash. The problem is when you take the backlash out, the contact patch is too close to the root/tip. I ended up setting it at a happy medium between contact patch and backlash, which I think is about where I started. I think the gears just get worn out and need to be replaced to get rid of backlash.


    Heres my thread on how to set backlash
    http://www.lrrforums.com/showthread.php?t=7123
    Last edited by etischer; 11-25-2008 at 08:02 PM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Lake Villa, IL
    Posts
    449
    Quote Originally Posted by seaslugx View Post
    Hey all. I was just told that I have too much backlash in the differentials on my truck. Ever since I bought it the truck has had driveline play (clunk when taking up drive/letting foot off gas pedal in manual tranny). I've owned the truck for 5 yrs now and have put on 60k miles since then and today I had a mechanic at the local shop who used to be a rover tech tell me that the backlash is too much and that it should adjust it. He quickly explained how to do the job and I have looked at the rave cd however, I would like more opinions on how easy it will be to adjust. I've pulled the diff before not too long ago and nothing seemed too out of place, worn, or excessively loose, however, my eyes are not trained in the detection of such things. I am planning on attacking this project this weekend and have done all the work on this truck to keep it on the road since I've owned it; I feel comfortable in my ability to take care of this. I've just never dealt with something like this before so I'm a tad bit apprehensive. Any outline of the procedure/advice/hints would be awesome. Thanks.

    --Justin
    Your mechanic was able to tell this without taking the diff out? Backlash is measured in thousandths of an inch, your guy must be really good to measure backlash with any kind of accuracy with the diff in the truck. Backlash is normally measured on the ring teeth using a dial indicator. Normally you measure in at least 4 different spots to verify your numbers.
    D1 drivelines have a lot of slop. Just about everyone experiences some degree of the "clunk" when shifting into D or R.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Loomis, Ca
    Posts
    831
    I agree with fish. I have adjusted the backlash on mine when I did the lockers. It's a combo of setting the pinion depth and the carrier position. The pinion depth is changed by adjusting the amount and total thickness of shims behind the inner pinion bearing race. You can use shims from a Dana 60 as they are close enough and WAY cheaper than getting LR shims. You will also require some paint ment for checking the contact patch, a dial indicator and stand, assorted tools and some patience if you plan on doing this for the first time. As a reference there is LOTS of slop I. The drivetrain of my 96 D1 with a manual trans. I can jack one wheel and get about 1/16 of a turn on the wheel. It's a combo of the axle diff the t-case and it's diff and the tranny. If it's not making noise or glitter in your diff oil you're probably in good shape.
    Trail Checklist:

    Rubicon (Buck to Tahoe in the rain/snow), Hell Hole
    ...

    96 DI 5" RTE, GBR 4.11's, ARB Front and Rear, 35" KM2's, custom front bumper, custom rear bumper, Roof Rack, Bottorf Sliders, Superwinch, RTE steering skid, Custom front diff guard...other and more to come

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Lake Villa, IL
    Posts
    449
    Quote Originally Posted by sactodisco View Post
    If it's not making noise or glitter in your diff oil you're probably in good shape.
    Troof.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    SF Peninsula
    Posts
    40
    "glitter". ROFL 😂
    =====================
    Original Owner of "Ol' Man Disco"
    1996 Discovery Series I 5sp (103+k) Mostly stock with a few creature comforts. Hella 550's up top, 3k on a bumper mount, Kenwood HAM, ... Lots of ideas, limited execution...

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