Monday, September 29, 2014

Transaxle Re-assembled

Last weekend, I got the transaxle put back together and back into the bus.  Fast sentence to write.  Lots of effort to do.  Today covers the first half of that 'effort to do': getting the transaxle ready.

Slinging Oil
slinger by hole in bell housing
where it's supposed to be attached
The bellhousing for the 002 and 091 transaxles are supposed to have this ringed collar around the input shaft to help guide the hypoid oil away from the input shaft seal and back towards the gears.  There are a few names for this bit, but the boards call it an "Oil Slinger".  According to the Bentley, this was supposed to be a non-repair item that was pressed into the bellhousing with a 4-ton press.  If it separates, you get a new bellhousing or re-press it in.  Well, the VW world has discovered that's not exactly right anymore.  Instead, you create a rough edge on the inner edge and along the rear (engine side) of the bellhousing.  I used a chisel and a file for this.  Then, rough up the lip and outside of the slinger near the lip.  Peanut butter the edge with JB Weld and press it into place by hand.  I treated the excess like caulking, and ran a gloved finger along the edges, pressing it in and making the edge clean.  Last, hold it firm with a simple weight and gravity.  Once its cured (18 hours), its ready.

Install Input Shaft Seal
roughed up edges
This was actually quite simple.  Lightly brush the inner and outer edge with hypoid oil.  Set into place by hand, and press it enough by hand so it sits still.  Find a short section of 3/4" PVC pipe (I used a 3/4" - 1/2" T from Home Depot).  With a rubber mallet, smack the seal until it seats flush with the face of the bellhousing.

Into One Piece
When the transaxle was built by AA Transaxle in Seattle, the bellhousing was sealed to the transaxle body with what looked like clear silicone caulking.  Not a fan.  I scraped all that out and instead ran hi-temp form-a-gasket along all of the mating surfaces.  Once it becomes tacky, set the 2 sides together and set the bolts in.  Rubber mallet the bellhousing into place and finger-tighten the bolts.  Following the jump-the-center torquing process, set them to 18ft-pounds (if memory serves. check the Bentley).

Topped Off and Ready
slinger with JB Weld
Before I put the bellhousing on, I made sure the oil drain plug could be loosened.  I had vaguely remembered that it was frozen in-place.  I was right.  After some hard torquing, I got the nut out.  I cleaned off the tiny metal filings off the attached magnetized rod, cleaned the threads and re-seated it.
Once the transaxle and bellhousing were one piece again, you need to give the form-a-gasket time to cure.  I gave it 24 hours and then opened up the fill hole.  It took all the gear oil I had on hand, and was still a touch low.  I'll need a fresh bottle to top it off before I take much of a test drive.  Remember, the tranny is full when oil spills out of the fill-hole when the tranny is on level ground.

That's it for today.  The tranny looks good, the input shaft has almost 0 wiggle to it and the seal / form-a-gasket are holding oil.  Hazah!

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