I have a 2019, 26,000# F-53 Chassis with a Dana Spicer 17060S Rear Axle. The other day I noticed that I had a small pool of gear oil on the outer wheel, which I understand to mean the joint between the axle shaft where it bolts to the axle housing is apparently leaking.
This particular axle shaft (Part No. 129440) has 12 bolts retaining it. I researched and from Ford I bought a new gasket (around $4.50) and some gear oil to top off the differential after the gasket and axle shaft was replaced.
It is my understanding that once the nuts are removed from the studs, and maybe after a couple of taps from a dead blow hammer, you should be able to pull the axle shaft from the housing rather easily. Except that is not what I experienced.
First, when attempting to remove the nuts, only three of the 12 nuts came off the studs. For the other nine, the nuts, along with the studs, came out together. It appears that the paint from the factory may have "fused" the nut and studs together. But that wasn't my biggest issue. When I went to remove the axle shaft, it would not budge. Not even a little.
I got my hands on a puller and with a lot of effort, I got the axle shaft to separate from the housing and come out approximately 1/4" - 1/2" but it still did not break free. It felt like it was still connected to something and was under some tension so that is where I stopped.
Frustrated that I couldn't remove the axle shaft, I put everything back together and tightened the nuts back down in a circular pattern, which helped push the axle shaft back in squarely. I torque the nuts down to 63 ft-lbs., which is right in the middle of the range for these 1/2" dia. studs per Dana-Spicer.
Now my question is this: Is what I experienced normal for this particular axle (which I could not find much about on this Forum or Google for that matter) or is there a step (or two) that I did not complete in order to remove the axle shaft? Unfortunately I do not have the Chassis Manual, nor could find one available online. If anyone has a 2019 Chassis Manual, I'd appreciate any assistance you could provide if you could review the axle shaft removal procedure and post it here.
I should point out that none of the 12 nuts were even close to being tight when I first began. They were barely past finger tight which I'm sure was the major cause, if not the cause, of the leak in the first place. Too, once I had torqued the nuts/studs down and did a short test drive, I did not notice any fluid leaks. I even checked back the next day and all was still dry.
Anyway, I am grateful that the leak has stopped for now but before our next trip, I really would like to get the new gasket on there. Your collective wisdom is much appreciated!