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Old 24-03-2014   #31
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Re: Croma driveshafts

Hopefully these are the pages from my old Punto / Marea manual (Lindsay Porters) showing the arrangement of drive shafts for the various Fiat models ( Tipo, Tempra, Seicento, Cinquecento. Punto, Brava . Bravo, Marea& Marea Weekend.)

Food for thought?
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Old 24-03-2014   #32
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Re: Croma driveshafts

Your garage should be able to check what is causing the vibration, the croma shaft is in two pieces it has a long shaft on the os with a tri pod joint this is the problem. I will get the part numbers for the vectra shafts tomorrow but I would go with a good second hand one, I can source the bits for you and confirm they are ok with no play and boots intact, if you like at cost, it's not a big job to swap, an hour at max. The beauty of the vectra shafts is that you can get the inner and outer cv joints easily in the aftermarket.
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Old 24-03-2014   #33
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Re: Croma driveshafts

Thanks for the pictures the fault is with part 6 and 8 that is the tripod joint. This on a croma sits at the End of a long shaft on the osf, the NSF goes directly in to the diff on the osf it's a plain shaft about 1 foot long the then terminates after support bearing with the joint. I will get some pictures.
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Old 24-03-2014   #34
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Re: Croma driveshafts

See picture of croma with shaft out note mounting holes on sump further towards gearbox where vectra shaft mounts, forgot I had this picture.
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Old 25-03-2014   #35
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Re: Croma driveshafts

Quote Originally Posted by Chris T View Post
Thanks for the pictures the fault is with part 6 and 8 that is the tripod joint. This on a croma sits at the End of a long shaft on the osf, the NSF goes directly in to the diff on the osf it's a plain shaft about 1 foot long the then terminates after support bearing with the joint. I will get some pictures.
Cheers for your pic Chris - I have been doing a lot of head scratching about the problem with the design of the Croma tripod /tulip joint verses the one on a Vauxhall. All the while the ability of the Croma ones to lose grease has caused me most navel gazing moments.
However as I have now found my old manual it is now obvious why we have trouble and why the earlier models are relatively "bomb proof" when it comes to grease loss.
The earlier ones which are shown in my earlier pics the tulip is round on the outside profile with a lip and a location grove for the gaiter. The Croma ones are hexagonal on the outside and have the three tracks for the tripod bearings machined into the internals. No lip is present and very little location is provided for seating the gaiter . This allows for movement of the gaiter and loss of grease , its easy to see how the wear will take place (without grease) on the inside "track"within the tulip as the bearings on the tripod will be hardened to a much greater hardness than the steel used for the tulip .
The material the tulip is made from (according to my training manual) is XC45, which is pressed into shape either cold or hot . It is a similar process as making a box spanner.

I am beginning to think that we are changing the wrong part when we change the outer shaft to cure the wobble! We should change the inner one first. Guess what--- Fiat only quote for the outer !! or the pair they dont want to sell you the inner only and wont sell you a tripod either.
The "refurbishers " ----hmmm--- how can they do it by return in 24hrs??. They have access to the outer CV joints and the tripods . If the outer CV is ok they only need a pair of circlip pliers and 5mins to change that and its back in the box /van and away.
Have to stop now as I can feel myself getting to a high point of blood pressure and my dog is trying to calm me down
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Old 25-03-2014   #36
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Re: Croma driveshafts

I agree with your view the one I took apart had water in it, the tripod joint was rusty, the boot was intact but as you can see on the picture the grease had been flung out due to centrifugal pressure. The reason I don't like the design is as you say the tripod receiver Is pressed like a box spanner. Not machined out of a solid piece. This is why it's so important to get te correct thick grease in the joint to take up the slack! It could even flex and expand under severe acceleration as it is only a a thin wall. Overall a rubbish design. The vectra inner joint is solid cv joint with a good cv boot design. The only answer is Change to vectra shafts. Not sure how they can recon the inner pot joint. Yes you can get the tripod separately but the pressed shaft is not really repaireble apart from welding and re machining which I doubt they will do, they will put new tripod on in an old joint with the obvious wear pattern still evident.
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Old 25-03-2014   #37
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Re: Croma driveshafts

Right Chris I`ve calmed down a bit and the dogs asleep.
I`m glad you found my ramblings credible.
I am from a metallurgical background before I retired and have a slant towards that side when I study materials parts of the car are made from. The stupidity of this design on the Croma is staggering to me. It must have been sketched out by the engineers and taken to the accountants for detailing!!!
If you were to want to make something out of mild steel plate you would mark it out on the plate using a scribe and cut it out , if it needed drilling you would mark the drill position with a punch.
The stupid thing with the design is that the tulip is not much better than mild steel and the bearing races on the tripod are harder than a center punch .
Wear internally is inevitable , and as you have found, the compounding of one mistake by another with the grease being able to make a bid for freedom at will
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Old 26-03-2014   #38
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Re: Croma driveshafts

This thread is getting interesting, thanks to those who (unlike me) clearly know what they're doing.

Your theory that the worn part was not replaced when it was refurbed does tally with my real-world experience.

So it seems the answer is a Vectra driveshaft. Does anyone know the right equivalent part code for a 16v 1.9D with a 6-speed box?

It just begs the question - given that Fiat were already committed to using a Vauxhall gearbox and suspension, why did they feel the need to stick a different driveshaft in the middle? It's unlikely they would have had something off-the-shelf for this, so why did they reinvent the wheel when they were happy to reuse all the other GM bits?

Is there a downside to the GM driveshaft? If perhaps the type used is known for being noisy or rough or something then perhaps there would be an explanation, in that Fiat were trying to make the Croma a bit classier - e.g. it has an acoustic absorbing windscreen too. I'm not bothered if there is a minor downside, but would prefer to understand a good reason why Fiat chose to ignore a ready-made part and make their own flawed design instead.
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Old 26-03-2014   #39
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Re: Croma driveshafts

Gm used this shaft on vectra c and saab 9 3, why did fiat used this design ? Local purchased and fiat wanted something on gage cars which was theirs! I will put part numbers on tomorrow when back at work
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Old 28-03-2014   #40
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Re: Croma driveshafts

Ordered the GM driveshaft in the link above, (Thanks Chris) today. So, whilst doing a general service on the car today, I took the under-tray off the car for a looksee and found that there is a little oil weeping from where the OS inner shaft enters the gearbox... Is this normal if the shafts have failed?

Thanks, Matt.
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Old 28-03-2014   #41
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Re: Croma driveshafts

High Matt- its probably the oil seal in the output from the diff. it will fit around the new drive shaft . Would always recommend a new one when replacing the drive shaft. Dont know how long you have had the car but if its not been yours from new the shafts could have been replaced before and they didnt change the oil seal.
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Old 28-03-2014   #42
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Re: Croma driveshafts

Hi matt it will be the oil seal as Tarquin says, they are a bit tight to fit, just use old seal other way round and a socket that fits inside it. Put a smear of grade on land on driveshaft when refitting. Let me know if your vibration has gone
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Old 29-03-2014   #43
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Re: Croma driveshafts

Thanks for the replies, guys. Unfortunately, I wont be able to get at it for a while now. I was coming out of the shed with a handful of tools yesterday and missed the step, fell over and fractured my ankle! Bloody Croma not only hurting my wallet, it's now trying to kill me!
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Old 29-03-2014   #44
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Re: Croma driveshafts

Luck of the Irish-- my ar*e
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Old 29-03-2014   #45
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Re: Croma driveshafts

Well, I'm a thorough breed Yorkshireman, so I'd say it's karma biting me in the ass for leaving gods county!
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