Military Vehicles, June 1997,: Re: [MV] 1951 M38 Jeep maintenance questions

Re: [MV] 1951 M38 Jeep maintenance questions

=?iso-8859-1?Q?Torfinn_S=F8rnes?= (
Sat, 14 Jun 1997 12:51:15 +-200

Steve Johnston wrote:

>Hi Mil-Veh gang:

>I just bought a '51 M38 jeep in good condition but before I do any =
>with it I wanted to take care of a couple maintenance items... =
>someone can offer this newbie a bit of advice.

>First, and most worrisome... there is a lubricant leak coming from =
>right front steering knuckle -- about ten drops a day, I'd estimate. =
The guy
>who sold it to me said it was brake fluid from the wheel cylinder, but =
>sure doesn't look like hydraulic fluid -- looks more like old 90 weight =
>and it looks like it is coming from the seal(s) around the steering =
>(the semi-spherical section around the constant-velocity joint) , not =
>brake section. =20

>I was going to open up the master cylinder and see what the brake fluid =
>like for comparison to the leaking fluid, but it wasn't clear to me how =
>open the master cylinder -- it has a small knob on top -- is that it? =
>does the whole square top lift off somehow? Hmmm...another question to =
>answer for.

>Anyway, assuming I'm right and it is leaking from the steering knuckle, =
>feel I should top it off until I have time to fix the leaky seal. The =
>manual "lubrication order" says to remove the plug and fill the knuckle =
>that level of the hole, just like one would fill a gearbox or =
>But it indicates that GAA grease is to be used. Is this a typo? If =
>want you to fill it that way, rather than pump into a fitting, wouldn't =
>gear oil be the lubricant? I'm so confused... =20

>The other thing that confuses me is the engine oil filter. It has a =
>on top and a drain plug on the bottom. The TM says to turn the handle =
>and periodcally drain the sediment. Is this a "permanent", clean and =
>sort of filter? If so, it is the first I've seen and I don't really =
>what's going on in there.

>Thanks for any advice...

>Steve Johnston

>*Extremely* excited about owning this piece of history, but also =
>new to the world of military-vehicles.

I have a 42 Ford GPW that also leaks oil from a steering knuckle. I =
don't know if these two vehicles have the same type of axle. This is =
what comply for my vehicle: The steering knuckle should be filled with =
grease and not gear oil. I think the reason for this is that the oil =
will leak out of the steering knuckle as it does in your case. There is =
a seal (actually two) between the differential and the steering knuckle. =
The oil must therefore pass through two seals in order to get to the =
steering knuckle. The seals on the steering knuckle is not so good that =
it will keep gear oil inside. So I guess you have to add gear oil to =
your differential until you have time to replace the oil seals.=20

Torfinn Sornes

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