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Re: MGB Propeller Shaft Universal Question

Subject: Re: MGB Propeller Shaft Universal Question
From: (Denise Thorpe)
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 95 13:02:37 PDT
> I got no responses on this last time, so I'll rephrase and try again:
> '79 MGB Existing front universal had a lube fitting, the rear was sealed
> The Owner's manual and the maintenance items section of the factory manual 
> don't show the universals as a maintenance item...
> HOWEVER, both the factory manual and Haynes show a picture of the propeller 
> shaft showing a long-necked lube fitting at the front universal!
> Were sealed universals stock on '79 MGB's?

I don't know.  I've had both sealed and greasable u-joints on my '67 B
(the driveshafts only differ in length) and the sealed ones lasted just
as long because I never remember to grease the u-joints even when I can.

> I don't want to have to remove a drive shaft prematurely to remove a broken 
> off zerk fitting.
> The front universal I removed had a fitting broken off at the base.  When I 
> installed a new universal (shipped with fitting) I noticed the fitting limits 
> the universal travel to almost nothing!  I installed a short fitting.  I 
> ordered the back uni' separately, and got the same fitting.
> If you've done a universal replacement with fittings on a late model 'B, I'd 
> be grateful if you'd crawl under your car and tell me if you still have 
> fittings, or whether they were broken off by the last big dip in the road.
> Thanks in advance for answers,
> Sean Johnson
> '79 MGB

According to my buddy Al at British Foreign, there's a particular orientation
in which the u-joints need to be installed.  For both front and rear u-joints,
the grease fitting should point towards the driveshaft, meaning the front
one should point back and the back one front.  In addition, there's a cutout
one one side of the driveshaft for the grease fitting, so even if you've got 
the u-joint facing the right way, you could have it rotated 180 degrees out.

However, he says that there's so little movement in the front u-joint that
even if you got it in wrong, the grease fitting wouldn't break off.

According to San Diego Driveline, the best u-joint for a B is made by Neapco
and they have short grease fittings.  I have these in the drive shaft for the 
car that isn't running yet.  I have some cheap u-joints with short grease
fittings in the B I drive every day, and the grease fittings were still there
when I was looking for loose parts over the weekend.  But it didn't occur to
me to grease them.  Hope this helps.

Denise Thorpe

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