Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

E28 technical advice asked and given! Troubleshooting, modifications and more.
camplo
Posts: 101
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Location: Bay Area

Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

Post by camplo »

I picked up a set of cheap 35 axles from Rockauto - SURTRACK / TRAKMOTIVE BM8002 . They have really fast shipping, usually about 2-3 days with their free shipping option. As much as I wanted to stick with the original equipment, it was hard to pass up on these cheaper ones. I talked to a couple of other members who had them currently on their car. BBRV has had his set on for about 4-5 years and just noticed they are clicking so he's going to pull them. He did mention to me to use a better grease than what is provided. I've read this on other posts as well so I picked up some Redline CV2. I didn't think one tube 14oz would be enough but it was and even had a 1/8 of the tube left over. I found a couple good posts about installing them here and was thankful the poster didn't use photofucket. The only other thing to mention was that the boots seemed to be made of a silicon versus the thick rubber of the originals. Hopefully they last

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I have been trying to hunt down this constant whine and when I was checking out my exhaust leak I noticed the axel boots were ripped. Of the four joints this one was toast. Do you think its salvageable? The bearings had a distinctly different color to them, really dark brown. So I think they got too hot and wouldn't be worth holding onto. The other ripped boot seemed fine and the great was still pretty fluid and sticky, not burnt like this.

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Taking the advice from BBRV and others I went to repack the grease with the Redline stuff. I pulled the inner boots down to take out the "prepacked grease" When I saw how much they packed I was pretty amused. It was really no more than a finger swabs worth of grease. I packed as much as I could than packed the outside.

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I used Rod's advice to seal the outer sides with the Permatex 80019 Aviation Form-A-Gasket No. 3. It was pretty messy especially with the grease everywhere, but I did the best I could. I sealed them up, reinstalled them and was on my way. I took them on about a 120 miles so far and no grease sling, so I hope they hold up.

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Blue Shadow
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Re: Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

Post by Blue Shadow »

Based on the pic provided:


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"Of the four joints this one was toast. Do you think its salvageable? "

Of course it is salvageable, well until you degrease it, get it all cleaned up and look at the wear patterns. Then we can make a more accurate evaluation of its condition.
Last edited by Blue Shadow on Aug 07, 2017 11:34 AM, edited 1 time in total.
camplo
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Location: Bay Area

Re: Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

Post by camplo »

Blue Shadow wrote:Based on the pic provided:
[img]http://i.imgur.com/E1dstmt.jpg[img]

"Of the four joints this one was toast. Do you think its salvageable? "

Of course it is salvageable, well until you degrease it get it all cleaned up and look at the wear patterns. Them we can make a more accurate evaluation of its condition.
Ok, I had tossed them both in the garbage but I will pull them out and clean them up lol. I kind of felt bad throwing them away, good thing I am pretty lazy and didn't take out the trash last week.
Blue Shadow
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Re: Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

Post by Blue Shadow »

If you only had one bad boot then the other axle might need just a complete wash with solvent to clean and a fresh repack of the grease. The GKN Lobro kit is 10-25 bucks each and come complete. Rod Paine's write up shows using some silicone sealant on the axle at the boot to prevent leaks. Easy rebuild but you can put the unit back together 180° out and have a limited range of motion. Messy job but rewarding.
reesesboot
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Re: Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

Post by reesesboot »

How are they holding up?
shemaghrider
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Location: Portland, OR

Re: Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

Post by shemaghrider »

i just bought a pair of these since all four boots were ripped and i found wear on the bearings.
Will be posting a review once i install these and put some good abuse mileage on there lol
Smintner
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Joined: Jul 10, 2017 1:24 PM
Location: Wisconsin

Re: Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

Post by Smintner »

About to pull the trigger on these? How have these held up for the past year?
craigb93
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Re: Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

Post by craigb93 »

I installed a set of those about 4 years ago. It is a Chinese company. The boots failed in 6-months on one. The liteweight material just crumbled.
I bought another set from Advance Auto Parts for ~$65/ I think. The heavier boot material on their re-mans has served ever since w/ no problems.
YMMV -Dick
reesesboot
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Re: Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

Post by reesesboot »

I'll probably go for a set Cardone Remanufactured. They're about $70 plus core.
Fanclutchnut
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Location: Westchester Co NY

Re: Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

Post by Fanclutchnut »

This is somewhat old info, but on my A2 GTI, I stopped buying reman axels after I scattered a few. I started buying oem repacement CV joints and installed them onto my existing axles. Much cheaper and they were no longer failing early.

Are just the joints available for e28s?
reesesboot
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Re: Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

Post by reesesboot »

The remanufactured axles use oem cv joints. The new "surtrack" units are obviously not oem. New oem GKN axles are available, but are $200+.
Mike W.
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Re: Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

Post by Mike W. »

As rarely as the CV joint fail, I'd be more comfortable with a junkyard set off a 528e than a cheapie rebuilt one. When I sold my 535 it had 330K on it with original half shafts. No issues. I did have a rear wheel bearing fail, but that's a different story. YMMV.
a
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Re: Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

Post by a »

Mike W. x 2. Original 528e axles are good for 300K if you don't rip the boots. The Bentley manual has pictures of bad CV
a
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Re: Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

Post by a »

Mike W. x 2. Original 528e axles are good for 300K if you don't rip the boots. The Bentley manual has pictures of bad CV
reesesboot
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Re: Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

Post by reesesboot »

Anyone have experience with new GKN axles? Not a bad price with a 10% coupon code.

https://www.fcpeuro.com/products/bmw-cv ... 3211226667
jc72
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Re: Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

Post by jc72 »

Mike W. wrote: Mar 26, 2021 7:55 PM As rarely as the CV joint fail, I'd be more comfortable with a junkyard set off a 528e than a cheapie rebuilt one. When I sold my 535 it had 330K on it with original half shafts. No issues. I did have a rear wheel bearing fail, but that's a different story. YMMV.
Are the 528e ones different/better than ones from a 535?
Blue Shadow
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Re: Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

Post by Blue Shadow »

jc72 wrote: Mar 29, 2021 2:06 AM
Are the 528e ones different/better than ones from a 535?
Nope, same part
Mike W.
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Re: Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

Post by Mike W. »

Blue Shadow wrote: Mar 29, 2021 10:33 AM
jc72 wrote: Mar 29, 2021 2:06 AM
Are the 528e ones different/better than ones from a 535?
Nope, same part
Same part, but with less power that was put thru them for decades. Arguably by drivers who were less aggressive too.
garageboy
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Re: Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

Post by garageboy »

a wrote: Mar 27, 2021 8:23 AM Mike W. x 2. Original 528e axles are good for 300K if you don't rip the boots. The Bentley manual has pictures of bad CV
x10, "a" and "Mike W."

I will never understand how people buy garbage parts. I'm obviously on a completely different planet. I'm worried about the quality of FACTORY parts that we have seen deteriorate in these few decades, as BMW AG has moved manufacturing of these parts from West Germany to factories all over Europe.

I'm wondering, as an engineer, how I'd behave in my 20s if I were born 30+ years later. I mean, I learned in high school that you could fix a BMW motorcycle with a shim from a beer can (thanks, Mr. Pirsig), but in most cases, you could plainly see with your eyes the difference in quality between factory parts and aftermarket parts. When I got my first BMW (age 23), after suffering a year with a bad American car, I realized the BMW was constructed with high quality parts, and where I didn't know what to do, I asked truly wonderful BMW people that were more knowledgeable than me -- certainly, they had more experience than me. I can't imagine a moment, if a RockAuto existed, that I would maintain and repair my BMW with garbage. Who does that? Why even own such a car if you can't afford to take care of it? Is it some "status" thing to say you own a BMW? Is that still a thing? If you don't understand that the car IS the sum of its parts, is that how you rationalize destroying it with cheap crap? You can't feel the difference? I don't get it and I'll never get it.

I've been fortunate to learn many things in life, most notably things relating to engineering, science, and technology. But the thing I've learned the most is how much of the vast knowledge of the world I do NOT know and never will... which is why I have learned to defer to people that know more than me when I don't know enough to make an informed decision. The abject arrogance and blatant stupidity in not knowing and yet making decisions clearly unqualified to make will forever blow me away.

Quality matters. Rant off. Have a nice day. Peace and love.
Blue Shadow
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Re: Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

Post by Blue Shadow »

Mike W. wrote: Mar 29, 2021 1:07 PM
Blue Shadow wrote: Mar 29, 2021 10:33 AM
jc72 wrote: Mar 29, 2021 2:06 AM
Are the 528e ones different/better than ones from a 535?
Nope, same part
Same part, but with less power that was put thru them for decades. Arguably by drivers who were less aggressive too.
and considerably more abundant, well back when e28s were in the yards
e12euro
Posts: 162
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Re: Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

Post by e12euro »

I am going to chime in on this because Rockauto seems to be coming up more and more these days. I bought an a/c drier flask from them some years ago. When it arrived I saw it was made in China, so just gave it as a gift to a mechanic friend, and I hope he hasn't put it on anyone's car!

I have also been watching Garage Squad, their sponsor is Rockauto. I always thought they only had general parts, not specific parts for a certain model, until I saw the axle set mentioned here. I honestly wonder if Rockauto sell any parts that aren't Chinese made?

I have noticed that Bilstein shocks are still German made, and you would have to put their high price down to quality. As with any parts if you pay less, you often get less.

Funny thing I came across, I saw someone take out the fuse box/relay modules from an e32 735i's engine bay and it said Made In U.S.A. on them. A factory original?
Blue Shadow
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Re: Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

Post by Blue Shadow »

e12euro wrote: Mar 30, 2021 1:24 PM I honestly wonder if Rockauto sell any parts that aren't Chinese made?

If everything they sell is made in china there must be a lot of counterfeits. Wiper blades they seem to have every manufacturer as they do with a number of other products.
gadget73
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Re: Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

Post by gadget73 »

Better question is does anyone sell parts that aren't made there? Getting fairly difficult to find anything that isn't unless you're shopping NOS in a lot of cases. Even formerly good brands are now produced there, sometimes with seemingly no QC. Then you get the counterfeit stuff that isn't always obviously junk until you find out the hard way.
Mike W.
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Re: Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

Post by Mike W. »

I've bought from Rockauto before and will again. Seems with everyplace you have to be careful about the manufacturer and where they come from, but especially Rockauto. But they do have some screaming deals especially on closeouts. On the other hand I almost bought a set of E12 shocks from them one time, except in checkout I noticed they were being shipped from England at an astronomical price. Cancel, Cancel, Cancel.
e12euro
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Re: Cheap $35 axles from Rockauto

Post by e12euro »

gadget73 wrote: Mar 30, 2021 3:21 PM Better question is does anyone sell parts that aren't made there? Getting fairly difficult to find anything that isn't unless you're shopping NOS in a lot of cases. Even formerly good brands are now produced there, sometimes with seemingly no QC. Then you get the counterfeit stuff that isn't always obviously junk until you find out the hard way.
I was a little surprised to find out the automatic gearbox you find in a new VW Golf, or Ford Mustang V8, are both assembled in China. A little OT since those are complete assemblies, not parts, but even so. :shock:
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