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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
First time posting here so bear with me. I have a 2003 2500HD CCLB lifted. The problem I’m having is that the flange/short shaft on the drivers side of my front differential keeps walking out on me. When it walks out it still has the retaining clip attached to the shaft. When I disconnect the axle and give the flange a solid shove back into the differential you can hear the retaining clip seat and hold (can’t pull it out by hand). After a couple miles down the road, that short shaft will walk back out again. Would it be as simple a fix as getting a new retaining clip, installing said retaining clip and putting it back in the front diff? Thanks in advance.
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Does it have original GM cv axles in it or aftermarket? I ran into this on my truck with the Fleece Tuff Shafts since they don't have the retaining ring on them. I had to replace the left axle after an issue and figured out that the aftermarket shafts are shorter and the left stub axle kept pulling out. Swapped it with a GM cv axle and it it works fine
 

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Also, I've seen that a lot of lifts come with a spacer that bolts in between the cv axle and the stub shaft, so maybe look into that as well. I've never had a lifted truck or installed one on these trucks, or really ever looked at them much, so I can't say if they all have spacers or not
 

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Shaft is too short for the lift or, it needs a spacer between the diff side axle shaft and the cv shaft.
 

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Shaft is too short for the lift or, it needs a spacer between the diff side axle shaft and the cv shaft.
This. What lift kit is on your truck? Who did the install? See if you can get us a pic of the whole CV Axle, so we can see it from the diff to the hub assembly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
It’s an old lift made by fabtech that’s not in production anymore, I bought the truck with the lift kit in it a few years back. I just did a lot of front end work to the truck and one of the things I did was buy new axles, old ones were starting to rip boots/loose joints. I bought these extended travel axles off of duramaxstore.com and they fit extended a bit but they have kind of a spring back to them, so they are definitely pulling on the flange. When I bought them I didn’t know they would have that spring back to them based on the diagram they had listed. I didn’t think that the “spring force” would be enough to be pulling the short shaft out of the differential. I can take so more pictures later in the day when I am home. To answer a potential question no my lift is not set to the whole 9” it’s set to about 6” and the angle of the CV axle is not very drastic at all. From what I can tell it looks like i would need like a 2” spacer, like I said I’m not home so I would have to measure when I get home. I don’t know much about the internals of the front differential and was hoping that a new retaining ring would solve my problem but doesn’t seem likely based on what you guys have said.
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Your clips may not be shot (they could be tho) there's just a lot of pulling force from the truck that can pull it out. I'm not too familiar with the coilover setups but 2" sounds a little much. Disconnect the axle nuts from the hub assembly and reseat the cclip in to front diff. See how much spacing that leaves you without it feeling "over stretched"
 

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Does it have original GM cv axles in it or aftermarket? I ran into this on my truck with the Fleece Tuff Shafts since they don't have the retaining ring on them. I had to replace the left axle after an issue and figured out that the aftermarket shafts are shorter and the left stub axle kept pulling out. Swapped it with a GM cv axle and it it works fine
Whoever designed the lift kit did a bad job, the front geometry is clearly all messed up and putting a lot of stress on the case that will be unpleasant over time.
 

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Measure the distance from lower a-arm bolthead to bolthead.then do it on a stock truck. If yours is wider then you know you need spacers between the stubs and the cv axles. Most lifts widen the fron stance
 

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Measure the distance from lower a-arm bolthead to bolthead.then do it on a stock truck. If yours is wider then you know you need spacers between the stubs and the cv axles. Most lifts widen the fron stance
The lift drop brackets are in the factory lower control arm bolt holes. No need to go find a factory truck to measure.
 

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Ya,i was drinking and too lazy to edit my post. I was thinking about adding that you should measure from stub face to the unit bearing to take into account the aftermarket spindles design as well if equipped. That was my reasoning for getting ahold of a stock truck.

Anything else is idiots guessing
 

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Ya,i was drinking and too lazy to edit my post. I was thinking about adding that you should measure from stub face to the unit bearing to take into account the aftermarket spindles design as well if equipped. That was my reasoning for getting ahold of a stock truck.

Anything else is idiots guessing
No matter what, I don’t think that I’ve ever seen a GM IFS lift without either spacers for the axles or longer axles. Usually, just spacers because they all make the track width of the truck wider.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I did some measuring and need 1.5” spacers. Tossed in my old axle (still decent only 1 was torn and worn) for now and will put the new axle in when I get the spacers. Thanks for the help 🤙🏻.
 
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