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Rear End *clunk!*


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I've got a loud CLUNK in the rear end that only happens under a sudden hard load. I rescued this '71 02 from a field and got it running. The center driveshaft bearing was shot, so I replaced that. One of the rear shocks was dead, so I replaced them. The noise happens less often now, but still goes CLUNK now and then. Most evident under hard take-offs and other heavy load situations like a short steep climb. A buddy of mine ruled out (possibly) bad CV joints, as it doesn't make any noise while turning. It goes down the road nicely, brakes straight and doesn't make any other horrible noises (yet!) The clunk is definatly coming from the rear end somewhere. I've got the rear seats out and it is quite noticable. The U-Joint is in good shape.

 

Any ideas what I should be looking for? Bushings? Bearings? Those CVs? Its my first '02, so I don't know too much about them yet. Thanks for any input from knowledgeable '02ers!

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Diff bushings, rear subframe bushings. Look there. Mine makes a clunk because of the subframe bushings being worn and I get axle hop under hard starts in the dry because my diff bushings are shot. 

 

I should also add that if you replaced the D.S. Bearing you should replace the d.s. guibo as well (the rubber chunk connecting the trans to the D.S.). Although it is probably not related to your clunk, a worn guibo breaking up into chunks is a good way to cause a lot of damage to a lot of parts very easily, not to mention the rear end locking up if the D.S. gets stuck while flying around. 

Edited by Rocan
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Have you looked at the front muffler?  At the BEST alignment it clears the underbody by 1/2" at the rear of the front muffler.  If it's 1/4" or less it bangs against the underbody upon load or acceleration.

 

If your car is of the stock variety it's kindof an easy fix.  Just loosen connections (flange at downpipe, flange at rear muffler) and rotate pieces ever so slightly.

 

Hope that's your problem.

 

Good luck.

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Another possibility is your rear universal joint. I had a guy last summer drive my car really hard. He says "that the way tii's are supposed to be driven". Shortly after that I had the clunk in the rear. I had all the thoughts you're having. Turns out both my (40yo) universals were toast.

Not such an easy fix. Driveshaft has to come out. New unis must be peened in and shaft rebalanced. $400. approx. $800 gets you a new shaft (I think).

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  • 5 months later...

I had this same problem on my first 71, way back in 78.  Only happened on take off and drove me crazy trying to find it.  One day with the car jacked up I noticed the left subframe mount was separated.  Because the inside of the mount separated, you could not see it unless the car was jacked up.

 

Snatched the rear seat out, unbolted the subframe mount, popped the hanger bolt out, and voila.  Assembly is the reverse as they say.

 

Check the subframe to body mounts on both sides.  I bet the left one is broken.

 

Michael

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Put it on jackstands (or a lift) and inspect the suspension mounting hardware and bushings.    As mentioned above, if you jack up the rear, the (2) large subframe mounts should stay centered.  They will stretch and twist if they are bad.  Be careful!

 

If you cannot find anything wrong with the hardware, bushings, driveshaft, driveshaft-to-differential bolts, then I would inspect the rear diff spider gears.  Drain the fluid (inspect it) then remove the aluminum cover.

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If you cannot find anything wrong with the hardware, bushings, driveshaft, driveshaft-to-differential bolts, then I would inspect the rear diff spider gears.  Drain the fluid (inspect it) then remove the aluminum cover.

I was having similar noises as you, especially when making right turns, and after chasing my tail with all the "easy" things Found that it was the spider gears in the diff

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  • 5 months later...

I've got a loud CLUNK in the rear end that only happens under a sudden hard load. I rescued this '71 02 from a field and got it running. The center driveshaft bearing was shot, so I replaced that. One of the rear shocks was dead, so I replaced them. The noise happens less often now, but still goes CLUNK now and then. Most evident under hard take-offs and other heavy load situations like a short steep climb. A buddy of mine ruled out (possibly) bad CV joints, as it doesn't make any noise while turning. It goes down the road nicely, brakes straight and doesn't make any other horrible noises (yet!) The clunk is definatly coming from the rear end somewhere. I've got the rear seats out and it is quite noticable. The U-Joint is in good shape.

 

Any ideas what I should be looking for? Bushings? Bearings? Those CVs? Its my first '02, so I don't know too much about them yet. Thanks for any input from knowledgeable '02ers!

 

Soooo, did you find what was making the CLUNK sound?  

If you put it in gear and and rock the car while someone is looking at the rear subframe, you will see/hear if it the subframe is loose.

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