What more tools am I gonna need to do my gears?


So i've been reading alot back and forth about installing gears. I've never done anything quite that complicated before but im going to be going to school for automotive so I'd feel like an idiot paying someone else to do it for me. I could devote a couple days to it if I really needed to, so I think ill give it a try. Just wondering about tools i'll need.

Stuff I already got:

Basics like wrenches and stuff
Couple Torque Wrench's (Do I need one of those rolling torque ones?)
Dial Indicator
Carrier bearing puller
Some 2-3 jaw pullers

Do I need?

Press (I have a good ball joint press but I dont think there is enough attachments to do some of this stuff, you dont really need a hydraulic press do you? If not what do you use to press all these bearings on?)
More pullers (Can you pull the pinion bearing off with a 3 jaw?)
Housing spreader (i've heard some jig rigged ways to get around using one, will it still come out decent if I dont? They have them on ebay for like 180 bucks so i'm leaning toward just getting one.)
Anything else I missed?

If it helps i'm doing a D30/8.25


New member
Wait til you're in school and get somebody to help you. They'll have all the tools. Maybe you could get extra credit!!!


New member
The 8.25 requires a special tool for reaching down the tube and setting the carrier preload. Search for instructions on how to make one.


New member
You can't pull the bearings with a 3-jaw puller. It'll damage the cage and inner race. You should be able to get it with the carrier bearing puller.
You need a dial indicating inch-pound torque wrench.
Setup bearings are nice to have, but not necessary
Race drivers are also handy
You didn't mention it, but if the axle's still in the wagon, a set of tall jack stands (24"-30") make life much easier.
You don't need a press. you can carefully tap(pound?) the bearings on with a hammer and a correctly sized length of soft iron pipe.
A big vise is helpful to hold the carrier for final torque on the ring gear bolts.
A big pipe wrench comes in handy for holding the pinion yoke while you're loosening/torquing the pinion nut.
The 8.25 axle doesn't use a carrier spreader. You have to use the above mentioned pre-load adjustment tools. You can make those from a 3 foot length of square or hex stock and a 36mm nut (an old front spindle nut is perfect) Having 2 is even better, but not necessary.
You can set up a D-30 or -35 without a spreader, but you have one more step where you add the shims for pre-load and re-check backlash after you get everything set up.


New member
I didn't have a press. To get my bearings on I put the carrier or the pinion gear in the freezer and heated the bearings up in oil on the stove. Slid right on for me. I made setup bearings to pull on and off before final assembly.

I used a beam style torque wrench for pinion preload. Cheaper than a dial style from what I could find.


New member
I used a beam style torque wrench for pinion preload. Cheaper than a dial style from what I could find.
Good point. 'Beam or dial indicator style both works well for preload. The click style wouldn't be as easy to use(you could, but it would be a royal pain in the butt)
Here's a video clip of pre-load set with a crush sleeve on a Ford 8.8.
The procedure is the same for both the Chrysler and Dana axles except you have a yoke instead of a companion flange(this is where you can use a pipe wrench). 'Have to look up the proper pre-load for whatever axle you're doing.