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Old 07-13-2014, 01:32 PM   #1
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Help with 3 piece drive shaft removal

On my 1996 Itasca Suncruiser 34R I have a the 3 piece drive shaft. I just started to get some vibrations while driving. A friend of mine who is a service manager at a dealership rode with me and said that it's probably one of the u-joints. I have a 3 piece drive shaft which has 6 u-joints total. Looking at it on my motorhome and the diagram in the repair manual, I think I have to remove one or both of the center bearing supports to remove all three drive shafts. Does anyone know if this is correct? I really don't want to remove the center supports if I don't have to as then I'd have to re-align them when re-installing all.
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Old 07-13-2014, 01:49 PM   #2
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Carefully scribe the location of the brackets before removing. You will have to pull at least one of them down to access drive shaft(s). Also mark orientation of drive shafts from one to the next to facilitate reinstall.
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Old 07-13-2014, 02:30 PM   #3
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I'm answering my own question here as I just found in the GM manual that the center bearings are pressed onto the driveshafts. Plus there are only 4 u-joints instead of 6 that I said I had in my original post.
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Old 07-14-2014, 02:09 PM   #4
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I got the whole 3 piece drive shaft out. How do you separate the rear slip joint part (male/female w/ splines) of the shaft? It has a cap but there is not a bolt that holds it on. I tried to pull it apart and I thought it would just slide off the splines but I didn't want to pull so hard that I broke something. How does the cap come off? Since it doesn't have a bolt to hold it on is it screwed on?
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Old 07-14-2014, 02:12 PM   #5
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I suggest you call a GM service garage. It's been a long time since I played with a truck drive shaft.
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Old 07-14-2014, 02:19 PM   #6
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I was always able to slide the slip joints apart on Dodge drive shafts; sometime it can be difficult , because your having to overcome the suction created by the grease sealing the splines. Try a constant pull , to see if you get any movement.
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Old 07-14-2014, 02:20 PM   #7
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From what you are explaining it is a collar that screws onto the slip joint to hold a dust seal in place. Should unscrew, lefty lucy, righty tighty. Make sure to keep the ujoints in alignment when re-assembling the spline joint, .e. same plane.
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