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Discussion Starter #1
Like the title states, I have questions for those of who have broken axles in the past.

I often ride in and around a large swamp in Eastern NC and have been considering installing larger tires on my 570. I don't go out looking mud but there is plenty around. In order to be better prepared in the event that I were to break an axle, I'd like to someone to educate me on a few things. I've personally never broken an axle, so I need some knowledgeable riders out there to make me smart.

Questions:
1. What is the initial indication that someone has broken an axle? (other than a lot of cursing)
2. Where do they normally break? or what's the weakest part?
3. After winching or being towed out of the mud, is the ATV still drivable in any configuration to "limp home" or must you be towed?
4. If #3 is "drivable", should you remain in 2WD/AWD/ put it in AWD for a broken front/rear axle?
5. If you break multiple axles in the same hole , then what? :nixweiss:

Like I said, please make me smart folks & feel free to share your stories of how you managed to recover your ATV and/or make emergency repairs following a broken axle. Thanks in advance all!
 

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1) You will hear a loud noise or notice wheel is not driving
2) They normally break at the cup of the CV joint by the hub. That is where max torque is
3) I have driven all mine home when axles broke. One was a broken shaft inside the boot. It will tear apart the boot eventually though.
4) Does not matter but I would leave in 2wd. AWD doesn't kick in until rears slip but I assume you will be babying it home.
5) Assume you could still get to safety or have it towed. Either way axle is spinning if wheels are rolling. They are just not being driven.

In a really ugly situation you could remove the wheel, undo the ball joint and tie rod end and yank the broken axle out. You may have to pull it out of the other collar is the snap ring is sticky and it will ruin the other boot but I assume your getting new ones anyways.
 

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Did some land clearing, yanking on some logs pretty hard, snapped right rear axle at the outer cup, drove home replaced both rear axles. was stuck in creek(really sandy like quicksand) winched out, rode down creek alittle ways, heard some clicking noises(thought i had a rock stuck in rear brake) stopped to check, found left rear outer boot torn to shreds, full of sand needless to say it broke on my ride home. both times i was able to "limp" home in 4x4
 

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1.) You will hear it snap or you will hear a clicking noise while driving.

2.) The race in CV joint is normally the weakest part.

3.) You can almost always limp it home with a broken axle, but I do not recommend high speeds or continuing to ride. The cv can completely come apart and then the axle shaft could be flopping around outside the cup.

4.) Does not matter 2x4 or 4x4 because the axle spins either way.

5.) Get some stronger axles or stay away from that hole next time.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks all; that's kind of what I was thinking but wanted some expert opinion. I once broke a drive shaft on a F250 Truck and was able to make it home (after removing it) by engaging 4WD using only the forward drive train. A broken ATV axle sounds similar. I feel better knowing what to expect now. I do almost all of my riding solo and while I do know folks with ATV's or small 4x4 tractors who would gladly come to my rescue, its nice to be self reliant.
 

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Its 90% about thumb control. If you go WOT thru every mud hole, and hit tons of debris under the mud, you will break axles.

Or the guys that hit the mud then "shake" their handlebars side to side, will break the front ones.
 
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Its 90% about thumb control. If you go WOT thru every mud hole, and hit tons of debris under the mud, you will break axles.

Or the guys that hit the mud then "shake" their handlebars side to side, will break the front ones.
That's probably why I break axels so much because, I hit the mud hole and shake my handlebars and shake the wheeler so much.
 
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