Jeep Dana 44 Spindle Nut
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By: Terry L. Howe - 11/2001
The front and back of the Ford spindle nuts. The flat dark side goes
in and the light side has the teeth for the spindle nut socket.
Trimming the alignment tab on the Ford spindle nut.
All the parts involved. On the top is the two Jeep spindle nuts and the
locking washer, in the middle is the outer lock-out, retaining ring, and
inner lock-out, on the bottom is the baling wire tool to remove the
old spindle washer, the Ford spindle nut, and the spindle nut socket. On
the left is the hex wrench.
If your Jeep has half ton internal hubs, chances are you have the three
piece spindle nuts. The inner nut sets the tension on the bearing, the
lock washer slides down the slot on the spindle and a pin on the inner
nut goes in a hole in the lock washer, and the outer nut holds it all in
place. Sometimes, you get lucky and that lock washer slides right down
and the pin in the nut goes right in a hole in the lock washer, sometimes
it doesn't. Some Ford Dana 44s use a self locking spindle nut that does
not require aligning the pin and makes installation much easier.
If you have the 3 piece Jeep spindle nut, a good trick is to try the lock
washer and if it doesn't line up, flip it over and try the other side. The
holes are lined up a bit different when the lock washer is flipped over.
Often this will do the trick, but sometimes nothing seems to work. Especially,
if you are trying to fix a broken axle on the trail.
The Ford spindle nuts eliminate these problems. The Ford spindle nut ratchets
down and locks on every click. You can set the perfect load on the bearing
with no worries of aligning the pin. You have to press in on the spindle
socket to engage the teeth in the ratcheting nut. Works a bit different,
but easy enough.
The only down side to the Ford nuts is the cost. They run about $15.50 brand
new at the Ford dealership. The jobber price is probably a lot better than
that, but most of us ,like myself, have to pay retail. It probably is not too
hard to get the nuts at the junk yard, but to save time, I just purchased two
nuts brand new at the dealership. My local dealership had them in stock, so
there was no waiting. When I went to the dealership, I asked for the nuts for a
'94 Ford F-150. I got that make and model from a tip from Dave on our
Jeep Forum. I'm not sure
what range of vehicles they might have been used in. The Ford part number is
One thing I had to do with the Ford spindle nut is remove some material on
the tab that slides in the slot in the spindle. I guess the Ford spindle
has a wider slot it it. I did this with an air cut off tool, but a file
or a hack saw would work.
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