More Jaguar Woes

While the wheels are off in Seattle getting new tires mounted, the Jag is 2 feet off the ground out in the barn. Of course, we had to have an earthquake, and a windstorm too! 3.6 tremor last Thursday evening, epicenter Whidbey Island. I called home and Christopher asked me if I felt it, I of course wondered if the car fell off. Thankfully it didn’t. Then on Saturday we had a HUGE windstorm. Knocked out power for us most of the day so I couldn’t work on the car. I finally did get to it on Sunday morning and spent what I hoped would be a pleasant few hours out in the barn…

I figured it was time for some chassis/suspension maintenance. Staring at the left front, I worked my way around the car, doing a lube job, cleanup, etc. The E-type has splined hubs and knock-off wheels, so they need to be lubed too, but I’ll wait for the wheels to come back for that. With the wheels off it is easier to get to the suspension lubrication areas, so that is what I started with. Left front suspension went just fine. Right front had one issue, a torn rubber boot (or “gaiter” in brit-car speak) on my steering tie rod end. It is obvious that whomever installed it did some damage to it with the safety wire. Wear and tear did the rest. I’ve ordered safety wire pliers online and should be able to fix this next weekend. The right rear went well, but a new issue awaited me on my final stop around the car…

Above: a diagram/photograph of my loose hub.

The driver’s side rear wheel hub is just a wee bit loose in along the fore/aft axis. Now that I think of it, the car has almost always made a “clunk” noise when moving from forward to reverse, or vise versa. Now I know where it came from. I always thought it was from a wheel/hub issue, now I know it is just a hub issue. This is new territory for me as beyond lubrication I haven’t dealt much with hubs. I don’t recall this much wiggle last time I had the wheels off, so it must be getting worse. I posted this to the Jag-Lovers E-type forum and consensus is that either it needs more shims, and/or the bearings inside the hub (at the bottom fulcrum, not on the axle) are shot. Wonderful.

The irony here is that I discovered the wiggle after I’d lubed up the bearings in the hub and the lower fulcrum. You can see the white lithium grease still hanging off the zerk at the bottom of the hub. I grabbed the spline to steady myself as I stood up and heard/felt the “clunk.” I then started investigating further. In hindsight I could never get the hub to “clunk” with the wheels on due to the weight. I’m just not strong enough to move that much steel, aluminum, rubber, etc around… but just the hub? “Clunk!”

So now I’ll tear it apart to fix the hub and have to RE-grease it again.

Note to Josh: If you clean just a little bit at a time when you have the chance, it all stays pretty clean. I can’t imagine cleaning the entire car, but a wheel well? Sure. A bunch of little jobs add up to one big one. 🙂

4 thoughts on “More Jaguar Woes”

  1. The rear axle isn’t that hard to fool around with. If I can do it you can. The symptom you’re describing is actually a “nice” one to have to deal with, as it’s all pretty easy to get at. Still sucks, though. Rear axles should last essentially forever if maintained.

    My machinist actually laughed at the aftermarket bronze bushings that people buy to put in these things…the needle bearings will last forever, and the bronze bushing was pretty poorly engineered, in his opinion. This was several years ago, so maybe they’ve improved the design.

  2. I may be having a “fix the hub party” some weekend early in March, wanna come over Roger? I’ll invite Doug & Connie, you can bring the Imaginary Wife (oh wait, she’s real isn’t she?) I’ll supply the beer & food, the women can waste hours talking about horses, and you guys can provide the brains and supervise my labor. Could be entertaining.


  3. That sounds like fun. Can I bring a couple of slightly insane dogs?

    If Mrs. Roger can’t make it, I’ll haul along my new friend and neighbor Paul, who also has Old Car disease, though his runs to two-stroke Saabs, Loti and MGBs. His dad has an E-Type, though.

    Just give me reasonable advance warning, if you can. I’m sure something is planned for March that I don’t know about.

  4. This is what I was afraid might happen, as the result of 65E’s having become a ‘glugger.’ I can’t say for *sure* it’s why it might be worn out; I’m saying all that kinda stuff gets silt in in, during a flood and if not cleaned out IMMEDIATELY after being dunkified, it can lead quickly to wear and damage. I hope you’ve found it just needed shims; don’t forget to align/get aligned the rear end, too!
    As for Roger’s comment about the needle bearings lasting forever, this is predicated upon regular greasings. Miss a couple and the bearings are toast! As for the bronze bushes being laughable, I disagree: They present less problems for wear (if properly installed/made), but still need pretty regular greasings.
    Tweety awaits your ‘ride in the wind,’ Chuck!

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