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Well im trying to replace the studs on the front passenger side leaf springs with bolts. I was just wondering what they are before i go to the hardware store this weekend, by the looks of it seems to be a 5/8 but i want to make sure.
 

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The studs on the axle that hold the leaf spring plates on?  Leave the studs.  Studs are much stronger and with a stud you lessen the chance of wearing out the threads in the cast part of the axle housing, not to mention how hard it will be to get a bolt to fit in there that is the right length to get proper torque on it without bottoming out and still getting full thread engagement you would have with a stud.  If the studs are damaged, just replace them with new ones, the factory used studs for a reason and it's a good idea to keep them.
 

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Yep, you're looking for trouble if you go to bolts. Stay with the studs

Chris
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Yea those are the studs Im was talking about. But if you guys say to stick with the studs then i guess i will. Thanks Kyle
 

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The studs on the passenger side are 9/16" diameter coarse thread going into the housing....with a fine thread upper portion for the nut....I have just put 4" lift 1 ton spring packs in my W250....with 6 leaves the spring pack is obviously taller than your standard OEM 3 leaf pack....unless I missed some place that had taller studs to purchase, I was unable to find any without buying extra stuff....after speaking with several 4x4 shops around the country that install various height lifts for a living/business....it was recommended that I go with a Grade 8 bolt and flat washer along with the High Strength RED Loctite....the depth of the mounting hole/leaf pack thickness/u-bolt plate thickness was measured to insure using the correct length bolt....the stud replacement bolts and the u-bolts were then torqued to 140 lbs....had I been able to locate the appropriate length studs for my lift I would have used them....and now we will hear from the neighborhood that they know of 50 places to get various length studs.... ;D
 

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get a new 3" x 9/16 U bolt..  cut the U bolt off below the fine threads.. thread the smooth portion with a 9/16 coarse die
 

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Right or wrong, Ive had grade 8 bolts in mine for the last 3 years approx 35k miles. on and off road. And still tight. I carefully measured for length and used red locktite.
 

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I've never had any problem walking into a truck spring shop, and walking out with U-bolts made to order, and studs made to order.  They stock blanks (grade 8 rod, with fine thread on both ends) and just put whatever bend you need in them. for the studs, they just cut a blank , and thread the cut end for coarse or fine thread as needed.

I've seen plenty of dodges, with a bolt, and whats left of a bolt holding the inner side of the spring plate on to convince me to never use a bolt.
 

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SuperBurban said:
and whats left of a bolt holding the inner side of the spring plate on to convince me to never use a bolt.
It's a bad day if you happen to own a dana 60 like this. That housing may very well be junk. They tend to stick in there (thank you locktite) so they are not easily extracted.

It's cast iron, so don't be pokin heat around there randomly. You can try to drill it, but the bolt is broke off jagged, so the bit wanders. Can't drill it out all the way either, because there isn't a lot of meat left for oversize threads. As a matter of fact, that thin area is why you may not get away with much heat and force. Don't even think about an ez out ez snap off

Of course most other front axles are like this, like a dana 44 as well. Fortunately, they are cheap enough to just throw away.

Only option left is to suck it up and spend another thousand for a different axle or run with 3 bolts and pray you don't die. (machinists may have a 3rd option, but it's far from a guarantee, and going to be pricey)

***Based on a true story.
 

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SuperBurban said:
I've never had any problem walking into a truck spring shop, and walking out with U-bolts made to order, and studs made to order. They stock blanks (grade 8 rod, with fine thread on both ends) and just put whatever bend you need in them. for the studs, they just cut a blank , and thread the cut end for coarse or fine thread as needed.

I've seen plenty of dodges, with a bolt, and whats left of a bolt holding the inner side of the spring plate on to convince me to never use a bolt.
George there are no spring shops locally....should I find such a shop somewhere here in NC by the time the truck is ready to be put back on the road/trail....(all the assorted misc stuff completed, which btw is getting a lot closer than it has been.... ;D)....then I will see if I can get some studs made up....there may be a place in Raleigh, Winston-Salem, Wilmington, Ashville or in some hole-in-the-wall town....but i haven't heard of or found one....I originally had bought two L9 (Super Grade 8 coarse thread 4" bolts) to cut the head off and to have the fine thread machined into the shoulder for the nut....the bolt head destroyed the cutter on the lathe....so I went to Plan B....
 

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squads51 said:
George there are no spring shops locally....should I find such a shop somewhere here in NC by the time the truck is ready to be put back on the road/trail....(all the assorted misc stuff completed, which btw is getting a lot closer than it has been.... ;D)....then I will see if I can get some studs made up....there may be a place in Raleigh, Winston-Salem, Wilmington, Ashville or in some hole-in-the-wall town....but i haven't heard of or found one....I originally had bought two L9 (Super Grade 8 coarse thread 4" bolts) to cut the head off and to have the fine thread machined into the shoulder for the nut....the bolt head destroyed the cutter on the lathe....so I went to Plan B....
;) I'd start with checking out this place, and ask for a military discount. Tell them George sent you.



http://www.smithinternationaltruckcenter.com/military-servicing.php
 

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Thanks George....

To anyone that has a reasonable answer to the following questions....since we are talking about bolt failures vs. the OEM studs....where does the shear force originate from that is able to destroy Grade 8 bolts and not affect the OEM studs?....the givens being that neither are bottomed out in the mounting holes, no slop between the plate and fasteners, are of the correct grade and that they are torqued to specifications....would using a "spacer" machined to fill the gap between the spring plate and differential mounting surface that the bolts/studs would go thru help?....

So there it is, what do you guys think?....and I would hope to see some answers from the entire spectrum of experience....
 

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Studs typically have more clamping force and strength since you are not twisting the stud itself when you tighten down the nut.  When you are torquing down a bolt, you are flexing it along it's length.  The more it is compressing something, the more you are twisting the bolt.  There is a certain amount of this in studs as well but it is much less, especially with the mechanical advantage of the fine thread nuts.

With all that said, it is possible to use a bolt and either calculate the exact length the bolt would need to be and either cut it off or use a spacer so that you get full thread engagement and proper torque without the bolt bottoming out or coming up a little short.  The stud eliminates all of this worry and calculation or experimentation.  Again, using a stud that generally stays in the axle housing and even when it's screwed in is not really under much force is preferable to me, especially if you have ever found a nice D60 only to realize it is completely useless because the spring stud threads are stripped out and nothing short of expensive machine work is going to make it usable again.  Also be aware that just drilling the threads out and tapping the hole for a larger size may not be the answer since your spring is so wide and still has to fit beside the studs on the pad.
 

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Elwenil said:
especially if you have ever found a nice D60 only to realize it is completely useless because the spring stud threads are stripped out and nothing short of expensive machine work is going to make it usable again. Also be aware that just drilling the threads out and tapping the hole for a larger size may not be the answer since your spring is so wide and still has to fit beside the studs on the pad.
See above. ;D

Needless to say, somewhere out there is a dana 60 front with a broken bolt in it, part of a broken ez out, and a chunk of carbide from failed attempt to remove ez out.....and a cracked housing near said bolt hole. Probably running around with just 3 bolts.
 
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