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1939 Six differential Flange gaskets
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I am rebuilding my rear end on my 1939 Six and I am wondering why it has drain holes in the axle retaining flanges, the new gasket set I ordered from M M do not line up at all with these drain back holes. These seem to just drain the axle bearing area so why are they needed?

Posted on: 3/17 20:39
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Re: 1939 Six differential Flange gaskets
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Bob J
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Have not opened up a Packard, but I have seen that on other brands and it is common. Its purpose is to allow gear fluid that comes into contact at the bearing to run down and return to the sump down the axle casings. Remember at speed the gears and axles in the rear end are causing a great deal of turbulence coating the entire inside surface with fluid. If the scuppers were not there undo pressure would overwhelm the axel seals and cause leaks out through the outer wheel bearing area. That said, as I opened with, I have no personal experience with your rear end. It is likely no hole is needed in the actual gasket and the scupper is just there to drain any fluid in the area. Someone with actual knowledge and experience can guide you on the gasket issue.
Bob J.

Posted on: 3/17 21:13
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Re: 1939 Six differential Flange gaskets
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On your car there are inner seals to keep the gear oil away from the wheel bearings which are grease packed. Further out there is a seal to keep the grease from migrating out onto the brakes. The drain holes are to keep excess grease from being forced out. As the cars age, it was also quite common for the inner seal to leak gear oil outward, particularly if the car was parked on a slope. The drains kept it off the linings.

So in normal servicing I am always careful to replace the inner seal and to clean and pack the bearing. I hardly give a thought to the outer seal unless it is garbage. Don't neglect to set your axle end play while doing this job and you won't need to think about your rear axle for a very long time.

Posted on: 3/18 7:18
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