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Old 09-14-2013, 12:52 PM   #1
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Help with Pinion Ring Backlash

I have a clunking noise when I engage the gear, mostly in the gears going up (1st to 2nd, to 3rd). It is the normal low key clunk common on the mustangs when I drive it from cold. I have the 2013 GT. the dealer says it's normal.

After driving for about half an hour or more, the noise gets worse. I went under and rotated the driveshaft back and forth next to the pinion. I noticed the outer diameter of the large portion of the driveshaft (weight balancer?) moves by as much as 1/4 inch. Is this normal?

Without opening the back cover of the differential and making backlash measurements with a dial, is there an easy way to check it? For example, check the rear tire rotation while preventing the drive shaft from rotating and dividing by a number (ratio of tire diameter to pinion diameter which is 8.8 in)?
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Old 09-14-2013, 01:08 PM   #2
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Some slop here is needed, as you'll weld the pinion to the crown gear if it's too tight. If it isn't whining loudly, it's probably ok.

You have slop all the way from the pinion shaft to the rear wheels and it adds up.
pinion shaft play, output shaft play, multi-piece ds play, rear gear play, axle play. tolerance stacking varies this quite a lot car to car.

Try driving a little differently, you can work around this. A few more revs before shifting and a touch of gas just as you engage the gear loads the drivetrain and prevents a lot of this. This is SOP for most MT RWD cars, historically.
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Old 09-14-2013, 03:57 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 5LHO View Post
Some slop here is needed, as you'll weld the pinion to the crown gear if it's too tight. If it isn't whining loudly, it's probably ok.

You have slop all the way from the pinion shaft to the rear wheels and it adds up.
pinion shaft play, output shaft play, multi-piece ds play, rear gear play, axle play. tolerance stacking varies this quite a lot car to car.

Try driving a little differently, you can work around this. A few more revs before shifting and a touch of gas just as you engage the gear loads the drivetrain and prevents a lot of this. This is SOP for most MT RWD cars, historically.
Much appreciated. I have no humming. What worried me is that I had no noise when the car was new. It came shortly after missing third gear from second several times, and eventually engaging first gear for. Second once. I felt it was harsh on the car. Now I have MGW Shifter and no more shifting issues. A couple of month ago I saw oil on one side of the axle and heard the humming. Dealer replaced pinion seal and all is good except for the clunk which sounds like increased backlash. I agree with you on getting used to driving it with better clutch and gas coordination. I just hope nothing is on its way to break down.

Thanks again.
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