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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
So I'm working on my daughter's 02 Beetle GLS Turbo 1.8 with the 4 speed Auto - this is a CoPart Auction car (her first car) - and I think we spent $1000 on it.

So I bought these APWI half-shafts from Rock Auto - they were the most popular ones for the Auto Trans cars.

Of course I get the parts today - and they are made in China. I've picked up on the Vibe about "cheap" import axles - so I'm looking for input. This is a cheap car so I'm fine with cheap axles - and this is a high school/college car so she isn't driving the wheels off it. But I don't want to put axles on that are only going to last 2000 miles...

What's the story - are all the imported axles junk? This is an Auto - and she drives like Granma - so I don't think she going to twist them..
 

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You get what you pay for, non oem axles; seem to cause all kinds of problems and prematurely fail.
For oem axles; there is the genuine vw and gkn brand. gkn makes the axles for vw; so, you can save money by getting them from gkn. There are a number of places that sell gkn; german auto parts is one of them.

http://www.germanautoparts.com

You can look up the part numbers in their catalog or call/email their tech support:http://www.gknservice.com/gb/passenger_cars/propshafts.html

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Chinese axles are known junk, you may get some miles out of them, but there are a lot of BUT's.

First compare the actual axle shaft diameter to what is on the car, many of the turbo cars have "sleeved" axles that are very thick. They have a sleeve slipped over and welded to the main shaft from the factory. This strengthens the shaft and cuts down on the torque steer problems.

See the picture of the shaft from my car in this link - http://newbeetle.org/forums/new-beetle-convertible/43710-axle-replacement.html

See the differences of the axle shaft diameter of the cheap axles - http://newbeetle.org/forums/transmi...mission-will-not-go-into-gear.html#post930633

Next there is the trick of getting the old axles out, the drivers side may be a nightmare, read this - http://newbeetle.org/forums/transmission-talk/127394-snap-axle-removal-hell.html
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
As far as "Axles from Hell" I don't think that we'll have that problem - there is a bolt flange on both inner CVs. This is the old VW 4 speed auto trans in a 2002 GLS Turbo - it's not a 6 speed tiptronic with snap-in axles.

I will post a pic of these Chinese axles - but they are a larger diameter shaft like the stock axles - very different from the pics shown in the side-by-side pic.

Of course who knows about the quality of the CVs, boots, etc. These weren't the cheapest that Rock Auto sells - they were the most popular, so I'm hoping that there's strength in numbers.

We'll see.
 

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Bolt in axles will be far more fun!

If the axle shaft looks like what is in the car, this is great, but check to see if what you are removing from the car are originals, on cars this age, it may have already had crappy Asian axles installed once.

You would be surprised, my axles on my 11-12 year old car still had the VW part number stickers on the axles shafts when I removed them.

Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Done !!!

Both axles done in about 3 hours - but I work slow. Both axles were original VW parts - new with the car in 2002.

Inner Passenger slide boot was toast (it lives a hard life under the turbo - so what do you want after 105K miles?) Drivers side still was OK - just a bit of grease seepage from the inner joint - out the back side metal cover.

Hardest part was getting the 30mm axle nut loose - it took liquid wrench + mapp gas torch + all my poor little Earthquake impact gun had in it. These nuts had never been off since 2002. I bought an axle remover tool that bolts to the hub - but you don't need it - the hub end almost fall out when you get the nut off.

As far as APWI axles go - well look at the pics. The Passenger side is a pretty good copy - same diameter tube as stock, but it felt lighter so something is thinner...somewhere. The Driver's side is a much smaller diameter shaft - but solid - not a larger hollow tube like the stocker.

So we'll see - I assume these have some kind of warranty from APWI/Rock Auto. And I feel like $100 is all I want to spend on a $900 car - with an Auto, driven like Granma drives it. But if these babies give up the ghost before we get another 50K out of them - Daddy Grease Monkey won't be pleased...

PS - I'm very glad that I don't own a 6 speed Tiptronic with snap-in axles!!!

 

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cheap Axles

I got about 25-30k miles on the cheap local parts store Axles from china. The car's motor would start vibrating when going down the freeway at around exactly the same speed. Luckily for me they had lifetime warranty and so I returned them back for a full refund. Went back to OEM.
 
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