I pulled the front axles out to put new rubber boots over the CV joints in the front wheels. YOU DON’T NEED TO DO THIS. THE RUBBER BOOTS FIT OVER THE T-DRIVERS! Anyway, I learned that after I had already broken a circlip (C-clip) in this case the stop-ring that keeps the axels from going too far into the CV joint. I talked to my friend Patrick who let me look through his Sonett parts bins but no luck. I talked to Chris and he had a couple, plus an extra lock ring (a thinner ring that keeps the axle in). I drove out to Worcester and picked them up. Getting the axles back in was harder than getting them out (which was as easy as hooking a ratchet strap to the T-drivers and pulling the axle straight out of the wheel hub). I broke one lock ring and had to use the extra. Getting the axles back in is easy if you do one thing. MAKE SURE THE LOCK RING IS BENT TO THE SMALLEST CIRCLE IT CAN BE AND STILL GET IT ONTO THE AXLE. Once I figured this out it was as easy as hammering the axles back into the CV joints. Before I figured that out I was trying to get the lock ring pushed into the CV joint while the diameter of the lock ring was greater than the diameter of the splines on the axle. This meant that the CV joint was pushing part of the lock ring over the outside of the spline instead of into the grove where it is supposed to live. I greased everything first and my dad cleaned and greased the needle bearings in the T-drivers (every one) (Thanks again to Chris for extra needle bearings, I was one short somehow…)
I now have it all back together and dropped the motor/transmission in. I even hooked up a 12v power supply to the motor and let that drive the car forward.
The drive train is all set up and working!
This is the stop-ring. The lock ring is made of a wire. A tip for getting these lock rings on is use a small round file in the gap to make gripping it with a spreader easier. My spreaders have round pins for teeth and the flat ends of this clip didn’t work well.