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1962 Cadillac Sedan DeVille



The discrepancy:
When shifting from reverse to drive a loud clanking sound is heard. Upon driveshaft inspection, found the 
original non greaseable factory u-joints installed. The odometer reads 97097 miles on 7/14/09.
That's USA quality!
Corrective action:
Jack up the car and place it on four jack stands.
It's important to keep it level.
Less transmission fluid
will be lost when pulling the 
front yoke out.
On jack stands
When you pull the driveshaft out of the transmission you will need to protect the front yoke. 
To prevent damage to the yoke, tape a rag around it and place rags on the driveshaft tunnel openings. 

Place an oil drain pan to catch the transmission fluid under the tail shaft.

Remove the two center bearing support bolts and shims on the bottom of the tunnel. 

Bend the locking tabs on the differential u-bolt nuts and remove u-bolts.
Remove the driveshaft from the differential yoke by pushing it forward. 
If stuck, place a screwdriver between the yoke and u-joint for leverage. Lower the driveshaft and pull
it out of transmission. With the yoke protected slowly pull it through the tunnel.
1962 Cadillac Driveshaft tunnel
Driveshaft tunnel
With the driveshaft removed vacuum out the  
47 years of dirt accumulation.
This shaft is balanced as a unit. Before disassembling the shaft you want to mark the alignment of the yokes.
I used an automatic centering punch. Placing one mark on the yoke and one on the shaft. 
The first part of disassembling the driveshaft starts with removing the internal locking "C" clips.
Use a pick to clean off the grease and dirt build up. Then look for the side that has a bigger gap between
the clip and driveshaft. With a screwdriver to pry them off. Wearing Safety glasses is a must. 
They will spring and bounce across the shop. 
With the clips removed you can press the u-joints
out. If you're lucky enough to have an press,
That's great. 
Using two sockets: One that is just wide enough to 
let the cap slide into and one small enough to fit
into the driveshaft opening, you can use a vise.
See image below
This does take some dexterity and a third hand. 
Since the position of the vise doesn't allow
support from the table I clamp a 4" vise grip
to the table for support.

By tightening the vise you're squeezing the u-joint
to one side. After the one side bottoms out. 
Release the vise and pull the cap off. You might
need a vise grip to rotate the cap a little.

With the cap off switch the position of the sockets
and squeeze the other cap off. With both caps off 
tilt the u-joint and remove.
Internal locking "C" clip
Internal locking "C" clip
U-joint in vise
Clamp support
This is the sequence of disassembly:

1) Front yoke from driveshaft. 
(To prevent any damage)
2) U-joint from front yoke       
3) Center u-joint from aft shaft
4) Center u-joint from slip yoke
5) Rear u-joint                      
1962 Cadillac center bearing support
Broken down into sections you can now remove the 
center bearing. Pull the slip yoke out until it bottoms
on it's stop. Pry the nut locking ring back.
In order to remove the 1 and 13/16ths nut, I had
to make a wrench. I cut the front one inch off of a 
socket with a high speed cutter. Then welded it to
some 3/8 plate. With a torch I cut the silhouette
and 1/2" drive receptacle. Then ground the edges 
with an electric hand grinder and hand file.

I call my home made tool company The
Frankenstein Tool Works LLC. 
"Big, strong, and ugly, but they work" is my slogan.
Frankenstein tool
Frankenstein tool works
Place a six inch 1/2" drive extension into the driveshaft and clamp it in the vise. 
This will keep it from moving around.

1962 Cadillac driveshaft 1962 Cadillac driveshaft slip yoke 1962 Cadillac driveshaft center bearing

Loosen the nut completely and slide out the yoke. Remove the lock ring and wiggle the bearing support and 
grease slinger off the shaft. Remove the snap ring and tap out the center bearing from the support.
1962 Cadillac driveshaft
9" course wheel
Once disassembled, I cleaned/polished the shaft with a
wire wheel.
Don't Polish The Transmission Yoke or Slip Yoke
Machined Surfaces. 
The hardest part was cleaning the inside on the slip yoke receptacle. I filled it with parts cleaner solvent and
let it soak for a half hour. After removing the plug and flushing it, I still had to manually clean it with rag and 

I degreased the parts with brake cleaner and taped off the machined surfaces. Then evenly sprayed it with
two coats of flat black paint. Why Flat Black? Because that's what I had on the shelf.

Sequence of assembly:

1) Center bearing
2) U-joint on slip yoke
3) Center bearing on shaft
4) Insert slip yoke
5) U-joint on tranny yoke
6) Tranny yoke on shaft
7) U-joint on aft shaft
8) Slip yoke to aft shaft
Press new center bearing into support and install snap ring. It doesn't matter which side of the bearing goes on first.
U-joint installation U-joint installation
Install the u-joint on the slip yoke. The zerk fitting for greasing should be facing aft. Don't install the zerk 
fitting until the whole shaft is assembled. Remove two caps and install into yoke. Place the caps on the
ends of yoke and squeeze in the vise. Care must be taken to prevent dislodging the needle bearings inside
the caps.
While tightening the vise make sure that the u-joint is free to move. Use the sockets to adjust for "C" clip
If you have one "C" clip installed and the other cap won't squeeze any more, you're crushing a needle bearing. Take it apart.
Wear safety glasses when installing "C" clips they will spring across the shop.
Torque wrench adapter
Here's the math: (TA) / (A+B)= T1

T  = Actual torque value
A  = Torque wrench length
            center of handle to center of drive       
B  = Adapter length
            center of socket to center of drive
T1 = Corrected torque value
Slide the grease slinger, bearing support, and locking ring onto the shaft. Grease the slip yoke and receptacle
splines. With the plug removed slide the slip yoke into shaft and torque nut to 55 ftlbs. Since my Frankenstein 
tool is 6" long I need to adjust the torque. (55x18)/(18+6)= 41.25 ftlbs See above formula
Install a temporary zerk fitting into plug hole and grease slip yoke until some grease exits the shaft. Remove 
fitting and push the slip yoke about an inch inward squeezing out some grease. Install plug.
Don't bend locking ring until driveshaft is completely assembled.
Install u-joint on transmission yoke with zerk fitting facing aft.
Match up the marks on the driveshaft and install transmission yoke onto shaft. 
Remember to protect the machined surface on the yoke. I rapped it with brown paper before painting and 
that will stay on until insertion into the transmission.
Install u-joint on aft shaft. The zerk fitting 
should be facing forward. Install all four "C" clips
and rap tape around the u-joint to prevent
the caps from falling off.
U-joint installed
Mating both halves
Since the driveshaft is too big and painted nicely. After matching up the alignment punch marks I used a 
big clamp to assemble both halves on the bench.
Do a final inspection to make sure all the locking "C" clips are installed and that the zerk fittings are facing 
in the correct direction. Install the zerk fittings and grease the front and center u-joints.  
Place a punch through the hole in the center 
bearing support to bend the lock ring onto the 
slip yoke retaining nut.

You're ready to install it on the car.

OK! I know! What about spin balancing?
If it's not wobbling with all that grease and dirt 
on it. It's not going to wobble
 all clean and new. (IMHO)

I've had two driveshafts balance and all 
they did was take my money.
1962 Cadillac driveshaft
Slide the driveshaft through the tunnel. Then remove the protective covering on the transmission yoke 
and lube with transmission oil. Slide it into the transmission. 

Line up the center bearing support and install bolts and shims. Torque to specs. (3/8 24 grade 5 would be 35 ftlbs)

Install aft u-joint into differential yoke with the "C" clips resting on the differential yoke flanges. 
Then torque u-bolts to 15 ftlbs. Bend the locking tabs. Grease the u-joint and you're done!

I'd like to say you're good for another 97,097, but they don't build them like that anymore.

If you want to borrow my Frankenstein tool E-mail me.

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