Arizona Drivelines Driveshaft
Story and Pictures by Keith Auble
Arizona Drivelines & Axles
Gloeco, inc.

Specializing in custom drivelines and axles, stock or special applications and repair.

 

There are a few things that makes Gloeco driveshafts better than the competition, follow along as  I go through a step by step process of making one of these great driveshafts.

Gloeco uses some of the finest materials.  The shaft is made from 1 1/2" diameter 16 spline stock, many others on the market use 1 1/8" stock for there shafts.  This is just one of the many reasons I feel Gloeco shafts really are world class. The U-joints and CV-joints are all Neapco, which is a high quality joint manufacturer.  

The process used to manufacture these shafts is tried and true. Many world class rockcrawlers have at least one, if not more.  Being fully splined allows the tavel needed for todays high tech suspension systems.

This is going to be a rear driveshaft for a 1997 TJ. A new driveshaft is required after installing the Advanced Adaptors slip yoke eliminator kit.  

These are the pieces that Gloeco starts with. This specefic driveshaft is going to be a CV style shaft to help with the excessive angle associated with lifted jeeps.  

After the raw materials are gathered and cut to size the fun begins.  The process starts with welding the yoke to the end of the splined shaft. Since the yoke is cast iron itneeds to be heated before the welding can begin. Once the yoke is hot enough the shaft is welded to the yoke then set aside to cool (placing a spacer inside the yoke to keep from deforming while it cools). being such thick steel this takes several hours, it is not dipped in water because this will cause the welds to be brittle and may also warp the shaft.

While the yoke is cooling we move to the preparation of the CV-joint.  Many of you have had to grind out the yoke on your driveshafts to keep from binding, Gloeco does us the pleasure of doing it before they get to us.  Not only does it look more professional but it allows for much more angle from the common joints and does not sacrifice any of the strength.

This is the center section of the CV-joint. Notice the final result of the milling how clean and professional it looks.

This is the outer part of the CV-joint after the machining is done; The center is round giving the U-joint more room to twist and move the way they where designed, you can see the difference before and after.

After the joint parts are ready we begin to manufacturer the main housing of the shaft (the one that the splined shaft fits into). 

Since U-joints do not spin in a perfect circle it is crucial to make sure that the yokes on each end line up with each other, the elliptical rotation of the joints cancel each other out giving a nice smooth rotation.  

The shaft is being centered in the lathe then which will be welded with the slow rotation of the lathe the welder just has to keep the tip in the right location, this gives a nice even professional weld all around.

After the inner CV is welded to the shaft the remaining pieces can be put together,  keep in mind all these pieces have been machined for added clearance to allow for extreme flex from your new driveshaft.

Once the CV-joint is completed, we install the U-joint into the now cool yoke, then we add the grease seal by sliding the sleeve onto the shaft then sliding the seal over the splines this is a clean tight fit and does a great job to seal the splines from and traildust or mud getting in there.

After the drive shaft has been completed it is now time to have it balanced; lucky for us Gloeco also has one of those in there shop.  

The shaft was not perfectly straight when it was placed in the balancer, so in order to straighten it the torch was used with a little bit of water.  The outside of the shaft was heated up then cooled with water since this is not welded it does not change the structural properties but instead it warps the shaft straightening it.  

Once the shaft is straight the weights are tack welded on.  The shaft is painted a nice grey while on the lathe and then the sticker is added.

I really enjoyed my day at Gloeco. Watching the driveshaft be made gave me a greater understanding of the technology, quality of work, and materials involved.  Gloeco has been making quality drive shafts for years.

Special thanks to:

Arizona Drivelines

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