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Solid grease in 4x4 front axle

GordyS Great site. I've been following for some time. I felt it was time I offered up my story to help out.

Yanmar's aren't that comman in my area of central Minnesota but I looked at a couple and thought they were well built. I studied up on these and the grey market and picked one up at a used equipment/ consignment/ auction dealer.

I noticed the Ag type front wheels wobbled slightly and attibuted it to the tire lugs and the well worn tie rod ends. Something for the to-do list when I recieved the manuals I had ordered(highly recommend to all).

I got the manuals and checked the axle dipstick. I found the axle to be filled with solid grease, not fluid, but solid grease. I assumed that someone either decided that this was some kind of improvement or they pulled a fast one to cover up a leak.

I procrastinated through the summer to come up with a plan but was forced to action when the right front wheel locked up on me.

I disassembled both sides to the mid axle connection and removed over 2 coffee cans of grease (what a nightmare). I didn't feel it was necessary open up the diff.

The grease appears to have done a good job of lubrication, but there were air pockets at the top of the spindle areas on both sides. There is a bearing in that area just under the top of the casting and it dryed up and broke apart. A piece fell into lower gears and that is what locked up the wheel. I was lucky that I stopped fast and had only a small scratch on a gear tooth.

I had the chance to look at 2 tractors for sale since and they both were this way. Sellers claimed they didn't realize and bought them that way.

Warning to all. Buyers check the fill hole and owners with this, gotta get it fixed.

Wayne Typical vn recon cover-up; I reckon some others may do it as well. Sorry you got burned; there is a seamy side to this market. Grease in the steering gearbox is acceptable, as it covers everything. In the spindle assembly it misses the top bearing, as you have discovered. I have to believe those doing this know that, which makes all the more odious to me. You are probably looking at a very pricey rebuild...we had one brought to us a couple years ago, both sides demolished for this reason. One spindle was salvageable, one had to be replaced, ALL bearings, seals, etc. It was not cheap. If you'd care to peruse the catalog available on our parts page (from the lmtcompanyDOTcom site) and send a complete list, we'll be happy to try to provided some discount, as it will likely be a large parts order. Best of luck to you.
Al That's helpful to hear; thanks.

You did well to get some kind of manual. (Factory documentation in English does not exist for "greys.")

GordyS Wayne, I thank you for the offer but I fixed it up a couple years ago and it works like a champ. All the critical parts looked fine and I only replaced bearings, seals and gasket on both sides.

When I did "Phase one" I didn't pull apart the lower final case. I replaced the bad bearing, the top spindle seal and another bearing that I think was actually fine. Digging that grease out was the worst, like digging frosting out of the container with a chopstick. The whole axle is open so I got a long rod and scrapped out and dug a passage into the diff from both sides (when I filled gear oil on one side I was glad to see it flow to other side. I also dug out the grease from the lower case. (again, happy to see fluid when I later cracked open the hub drains).

My hope was that the fluid would fill in any voids, mix in and flush out the grease eventually. Seems to have worked. I have drained and filled 3 times, each time looking better. Now it looks like gear oil.

I replaced the big turn seal at mid spindle and assembled. Of course the hub seals leaked like a sive. I pulled apart again (this time was easy because I didn't have unfamilar parts buried in grease), replaced the hub seal, seal collar and case gasket. Put togather and works great.

That hub seal collar threw me. I saw it in the parts breakdown but couldn't match the translation or my eyeballs when I looked at it. I didn't see anything to pry on without damage and no visible seam. I assumed that my model was differnt from the diagram and had a solid hub spindle.

I put a new seal on the chewed up old collar, assembled and hopped. The other side was obvious because there was a slight gap. I ordered 2 collars, did it up and done.

That hub seal/collar is one place where I think the dealers should recommend as a matched set to the customers. They do seem to get equal wear.

norm "removed over 2 coffee cans of grease (what a nightmare)."

No need to remove the grease if clean, just add oil, if leaking, add Lucas Power Steering Stop Leak.

GordyS Norm, I was removing grease initially just to make room to add oil, it was packed right up to the fill holes. I ended up disassembling and cleaning everything on both sides anyway. The grease had done a good job of working into the gear teeth and bearings.

The hub seal and collar were grooved pretty bad.

GordyS Al I'm normally a believer in having manuals for equipment and with these machines I don't know how anyone could do without.

I got the basic 3 pack
Owners- YM2210 / D- English
Service- YM276 / D- English
Parts- YM2210 / D- Japanese

The parts book is kind of like a puzzle book. It takes some time to deduce things and I've penciled it up pretty good, but its payed for itself.

norm I think if I were faced with that, and did not have to tear down anyway, I would poke a hole in the grease and add ATF. That should melt, and mix with, the grease.

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