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Discussion Starter #1
I took over a restoration and rather than assume the last guy did anything right, I'm pulling stuff apart that he already went over. I pulled the right rear axel to see if the bearing was packed. When I went to put it back it started out fine. the spline engaged and I can get the universal coupling to turn.

It doesn't want to go in the last 3/8 of an inch or so. I tapped it with my 3 pound sledge but I don't want to hit it any harder. I can pull the rear end cover and take a look there or grease the spline but I'm wondering if there's something more important I need to know.

I know some of them have the clip that holds the axels into the rear end but this one came out easily so I doubt that's the issue. Any help would be appreciated.
 

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The rear bearings are sealed units on the pre-72 cars and don't need packing. The later units are tapered roller and don't need packing, either. The rear end oil lubes them. No C-clips in a Pontiac rear end. The flange holds it in. pull it back out, and check for crud on the inside of the axle tube and the outside of the bearing. Try turning the axle as you push it back in. It came out, it should go right back in!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
The rear bearings are sealed units on the pre-72 cars and don't need packing. The later units are tapered roller and don't need packing, either. The rear end oil lubes them. No C-clips in a Pontiac rear end. The flange holds it in. pull it back out, and check for crud on the inside of the axle tube and the outside of the bearing. Try turning the axle as you push it back in. It came out, it should go right back in!
Actually, the bearing came apart when I pulled the axel. One of the rollers actually fell out so I put it back and held it in with grease. I assumed it was a 2 piece bearing and not pressed together like most wheel bearings.

The rear end was just rebuilt so crud isn't an issue. I'm missing something and I don't want to find out what it is after I beat the thing back into place and break something. I agree with you that if should go back in as easily as it came out but it doesn't want to and that's what I have to figure out.
 

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If the bearing came apart in your hands, you need a new bearing, and probably a new axle. Take the axle to a machine shop and see if it's still able to take a new bearing. My bet is that the inner race spun and the axle is now undersized. Welcome to the Old Original Parts Club.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Yeah, it seemed weird that the rollers were exposed when I pulled the axel out but I've never had a 69 pontiac apart before so I just assumed it was one of those things. the wheel bearings I'm used to are the kind that are kind of shaped like a cone with the rollers sealed inside and a separate race it fits into. Is the 69 bearing supposed to be like that or are the rollers supposed to be exposed?

The half of the bearing that I can see, the inner part with the rollers stuck to it, is pressed tightly onto the axel so I'd be surprised if it was a worn axel.
 
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