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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Wondering it anybody has any idea why the drivers side rear wheel cylinder is not on the same horizontal plane as the rest of the van, upon purchasing the van a few weeks ago the drivers side rear brake line to the wheel cylinder was / is pinched closed, no idea if this is somehow related and clueless as to why this is or what is going on here, not sure if this is the original rear axle to the van or not.

1998 Dodge twisted drivers side wheel cylinder.jpg



1998 Dodge twisted drivers side axle flange.jpg
 

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How was the hard line from the axle housing to the wheel cylinder look? You said it was pinched off/damaged, but did it look like it was altered in any way, or was it clean bends and attached properly from the vent/split brass connector?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
How was the hard line from the axle housing to the wheel cylinder look? You said it was pinched off/damaged, but did it look like it was altered in any way, or was it clean bends and attached properly from the vent/split brass connector?
This is how the brake line was / is upon purchasing the van. I am not sure this is the original axle, it doesn't seem to have rusted the same as the rest of the van, but that could be due to the material it is made out of or environment it came from, the middle of Mississippi.


1998 Dodge drivers side brake line.jpg



1998 Dodge rear drivers side under carriage.jpg


Looks like I need to swap out that tire.

1998 Dodge van rear axle.jpg
 

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Does it look like the axle housing to that bolt flange is welded? It would have to be on the inside not within the brake area.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Does it look like the axle housing to that bolt flange is welded? It would have to be on the inside not within the brake area.
On the inside meaning the opposite side of the backing plate from the brake shoes ? If so it does appear that the flange is welded to the axle at that point, however, I will hit it with a wire brush either later tonight or tomorrow morning and let you know for sure.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
VIEW : Drivers side rear of and below rear axle looking forward.

Axle to flange.

1998 Dodge van drivers side rear axle to flange.jpg


VIEW : Drivers side, forward of and above rear axle looking back.

Leaf spring mounting plate to axle. (the black in the picture is the leaf spring resting on the mounting plate which is welded to the rear axle)
1998 Dodge van leaf spring axle mounting plate - drivers side.jpg


These welds look intact.

I can take additional pictures if needed.
 

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I am not used to left and right being in different planes. Brakes themselves don't care EXCEPT FOR BLEEDING! Bleed screw needs to be at the highest point to get all air out. Might affect parking brake leverage too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
I am not used to left and right being in different planes. Brakes themselves don't care EXCEPT FOR BLEEDING! Bleed screw needs to be at the highest point to get all air out. Might affect parking brake leverage too.
You think this might have came from the factory this way ? Wonder if it has a lifetime warranty for manufacturing defect ?

As far as bleeding, I was thinking I could mount the wheel cylinder and connect the brake line without installing the shoes, then unbolt the wheel cylinder and twist it level, then open the bleeder screw and gravity bleed the wheel cylinder and then bolt it back into place once it it bled, then install everything, seeing how I should only have to bleed it once it should stay bled until the next time I have to deal with anything, which is how many years. As far as that " bar " that goes from shoe to shoe, it was actually fallen down inside of the drum when I removed the drum, been there for a while, but then there was ZERO lining left on the shoes, it would probably be ok.

Then there is still the question of whether or not this rear axle is damaged, not sure if you followed one of my other threads on this van (sorry Allpar), this rear axle may be damaged because it hops / skips under moderate throttle.

I have three B1500 vans :

'98 this van, 140,000 miles, going to use it as a work van as soon as it is reliable.

'02 which is really nice, 51,000 miles, pleasure van, occasional work, not driven in the winter.

'03, badly rusted, 200,000 miles, getting scrapped as soon as the '98 is on the road, still runs and presently using it for work.


I could take the rear axle out of the '03 and put it in the '98, the '03 has rear disc so I would have to convert it over to disc, but I think the '03 only spins one of the rear tires, which sucks for driving in the snow really bad.

The '98 spins both rear tires, I think, but it may be damaged, so it is probably going to need to be fixed if I keep it, but I would rather have drums over disc if both rear tires spun.

I need to verify exactly how these rear axles spin the tires so I know exactly what I am dealing with, I will jack up the rear axles and find out later today.

To throw this out there ..... I recently purchased rear leafs for my '02, already had the fronts coils, I did not install them yet, but I was thinking of putting the leafs and coils in the '98 instead because the suspension on the '98 seems to be shot and the '02 should be fine for now, so if I am installing rear leafs I am already half there to swapping the axle.

Obviously time and money is a concern, do not have a lot of either, but will find it to do what needs to be done. I am only looking to get about 3 or 4 years out of this van, about 60,000 miles.
 

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If something had failed to cause the misalignment, I would suspect the failure point to be the drum backing plate shifting and not the entire axle tube.
I would think this would only happen if the holes wallowed out or cracked where the backing plate mounts to the axle flange - an area that isn't visible in your photos as it is behind the hub on the axle shaft.
 

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I don't think you'd see that the backing plate has shifted unless you can see if from the front. These hoes are where I'd look for possible damage. There is a stud from the axle end flange that goes through these holes.
81073
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I apologize, I have too many threads going on at the same time so it is difficult to follow everything, maybe I should ask the administrators if they can zap a few of them ..... if you take a closer look at that picture you can see two of the flange bolts in the backround, they are not in line with the shackle u-bolts, and with the welds being intact on the flange and the leaf spring mounting plate to the axle it appears maybe something was not assembled properly, unless I am missing something.
 

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Could be a replacement backing plate.
Maybe it's what I want to but can't help but think the axle is twisted.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I don't think you'd see that the backing plate has shifted unless you can see if from the front. These hoes are where I'd look for possible damage. There is a stud from the axle end flange that goes through these holes.
View attachment 81073
The backing plate is fine :

1998 Dodge van backing plate.jpg


With the axle flange and the leaf spring support plate not on the same horizontal plane as pictured in post # 12, and with both of the welds being intact and looking like they are original to the factory as shown in post # 8, it appears this was defective from the factory.

Thanks for pointing me to the welds 68RT, I would probably have gotten there eventually.
 

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It is highly improbable to fave that area twist without visible evidence. The only area of possibility in my head is that the holes were drilled incorrectly. Usually there is a flat on the end flange of the axle housing to give room for the wheel cylinder. Is that offset too?
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 · (Edited)
It is highly improbable to fave that area twist without visible evidence. The only area of possibility in my head is that the holes were drilled incorrectly. Usually there is a flat on the end flange of the axle housing to give room for the wheel cylinder. Is that offset too?
Yes, the entire flange is offset, as you mentioned, hard to imagine a 4 " axle twisting over a 4 " span without any visual evidence of it doing so, if it could even be possible. You can see the axle flange bolts are not on the same plane as the leaf spring u-bolts and I do not think it could be possible for the leaf spring u-bolts to not be perpendicular to the leaf spring mounting bracket or the axle retaining bracket that the u-bolts run through without evidence of the u-bolts being offset or twisted as well. I think I just got a bogus axle ..... I went ahead and buttoned it up I guess it should be fine.


1998 Dodge van offset axle flange.jpg
 

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Yes, the entire flange is offset, as you mentioned, hard to imagine a 4 " axle twisting over a 4 " span without any visual evidence of it doing so, if it could even be possible. You can see the axle flange bolts are not on the same plane as the leaf spring u-bolts and I do not think it could be possible for the leaf spring u-bolts to not be perpendicular to the leaf spring mounting bracket or the axle retaining bracket that the u-bolts run through without evidence of the u-bolts being offset or twisted as well. I think I just got a bogus axle ..... I went ahead and buttoned it up I guess it should be fine.


View attachment 81167
That is what I would do. Only issues would be bleeding and possible issue of parking brake leverage.
 
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