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Discussion Starter #1
The following pertains to a 2015 Commander XT. It may or may not pertain to other model years.

If you're installing a lift kit, or removing both of your rear shocks for any reason (perhaps you're performing some service, or installing new shocks or new springs, etc.), be sure to FIRST remove your tires/wheels before you unbolt both shocks at the same time.

Why? The weight of both tires (I had the stock 27 inch Maxis Bighorn 2 tires), without the shocks to limit the downward travel of the rear suspension could pull your rear suspension down too much and pull out the axles from the CV joints at the wheel hub. Yes it can happen (I'm an example of this happening)!

To put this back together, it's a bit of work:

  • you need to remove the rear torsion bar
  • remove the rear break caliper
  • remove the wheel hub
  • remove each trailing arm
  • remove the axle from the trailing arm
  • and then remove the outer CV boot at the wheel hub
  • Then reinsert the axle into the CV joint (it's greasy in there, be prepared)
  • Get new CV boot retainers and install them (you probably can't reuse the original clamps)
  • then put everything properly back together with locktight threadlocker in the proper places and using the proper torque values for important nuts and bolts.

I would also suggest if you are installing a bracket lift to install the REAR brackets FIRST! The reason for this is that if there is any problems installing the lift kit, you will know before you install the front brackets, as the rear brackets seem to be more critical than the front kit. So if there is a problem with the rear brackets, you can stop here and re-assemble the buggy without the rear brackets and not have to go back and remove the front brackets to make your buggy drivable again. This way it's easier to get your buggy back in service while you're trying to figure out how to solve the fitment issue.

If you need to pull down on your shocks at all to re-insert the bolt for the shock, then STOP and contact the manufacturer for instructions. They may either have to make you a new bracket, or they may instruct you to try an 'axle-extender' kit (UATV-Tech has these).

If you can insert your shock bolt easily without pulling down on your rear shocks, or by lifting up on your shocks by any amount, then you should be ok. But IMHO, it's important NOT to have your wheels and tires installed while your doing this, because (as previously mentioned) having the weight of the wheels and tires installed could cause your axles to pull out of the hubs a bit and give you a false indication that everything is fitting properly.

I had done this backwards, I installed the front brackets first. Then when I went to install my rear brackets I had to pull down on one shock about 1/2 (0.5) inch, and about 1/4 (0.25) inch on the other shock. I thought this was odd, but there were no mention of this in the bracket lift installation instructions. I went and did some research, but didn't drive the buggy other than to load it on a trailer and off again, and found out that I shouldn't have pulled down on the shocks that much to get the rear shocks to install.

Contacting the manufacturer, they wanted me to measure the amount that I needed to compensate for pulling down the shocks. Since I thought this was an easy measurement to do, I hadn't thought about removing the wheels and tires. When I removed both upper rear shock bolts, this time I didn't have to pull down on the shocks to remove or install the bolts, but it looked like I had to lift up the shocks by about 1/2 (0.5) inch. I was contemplating why the difference compared to when I first installed the rear brackets (I hadn't yet realized that the weight of the tires would cause an issue), when suddenly the rear suspension dropped another 2 inches until the rear tires were resting against the body panels. This is when I discovered that the rear axles had pulled out of the CV joints at the wheel hub end. So now you can learn by my mistake. ;)

I'm told that when you reassemble everything, it's a good time to change the clip at the end of the axle that retains the axle in the CV joint to one from the Maverick instead of the one from the Commander (thanks Acefire for this tip). Luckily I have a dealer close by so I should be able to order these clips. I haven't done this yet, so I can't confirm it. At this point, it's also pretty easy to install the "axle-stenders" since you already have everything disassembled as needed to install the extenders.

I was also told to get new CV boot clamps and the installation tool from a NAPA store instead of trying to use the almost impossible to install Can-Am boot clamps. I'll also confirm this later when I get a chance to finish this.

I hope this helps some others. My guess is that this information is good for just about any brand of bracket lift, so there is no need to mention any specific brand at this point.
 

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Man you have bad luck. Lol every year model used same rear axles and you are the first to have the shafts to pull out of outer cv.
 

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I would much rather the axle pull out of the diff than using a Maverick axle clip that causes the CV to pull apart. I've had both.
 

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Great write up. You're definitely right about installing the rears first.
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
I would much rather the axle pull out of the diff than using a Maverick axle clip that causes the CV to pull apart. I've had both.
I hadn't heard about this issue, so the Mav clip can cause CV issues? Please elaborate!


Man you have bad luck. Lol every year model used same rear axles and you are the first to have the shafts to pull out of outer cv.
Yes, aren't I lucky, I got a two-fer! Both axles pulled out at the wheel hub CV! Luckily the clip looked good, I only had to slip it back in.. Is this the same clip used at the diff end of the axle? It looks very basic, and no damage I could see, probably because the axles weren't turning when this happened as the buggy is still on my jack stands.

Here's a question, my 2015 rear wheel hubs look like they were held on with blue locktight. I had to use some force with my gear puller to remove the hub. I also had to scrape it out of the flutes and grooves of the splines and it was a bit brittle like dried blue locktight. But the 2014 service manual says to use grease to reinstall the hub. Was there a change in the 2015 assembly to use a threadlocker instead of grease here?


Do I really need to replace the outer clip thst hold the axle into the CV joint at the wheel hub end? If yes, I hope I can remove it now thst I have one side inserted again.

Does anyone have a 2015 service manual so I can reassemble this properly?
 

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The Mav clip does not cause CV issues, but if your lift kit and/or removed sway bar makes your stock axles too short, the Mav axle clip can be stronger than the one inside the CV joint. Something has to give and if the stock Commander axle clip is popping out then the axle is too short, period.
 

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Most of the thread locker on these machines will show remnants of yellow as it's pre applied if it were me the splines of the hub would be greased when put back together that big nut and pin will keep it in place, and it is sounding like you are a candidate for some stenders!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
The Mav clip does not cause CV issues, but if your lift kit and/or removed sway bar makes your stock axles too short, the Mav axle clip can be stronger than the one inside the CV joint. Something has to give and if the stock Commander axle clip is popping out then the axle is too short, period.
Ok, thanks, this helps me understand. I already pulled out the clips from the ones inside the CV at the wheel hub end of the axle, so at this point I'm trying to decide if I need to replace those at all, and if so, should I go with the Mav clips.

If I get my axles installed, hopefully I won't have this issue again, but with my luck!?!?!?
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Most of the thread locker on these machines will show remnants of yellow as it's pre applied if it were me the splines of the hub would be greased when put back together that big nut and pin will keep it in place, and it is sounding like you are a candidate for some stenders!
I did see yellow locker on other bolts. The stuff in the wheel hub splines looked blue, and it was a bit hard and brittle and scraped out easily with a screwdriver blade. It really didn't look like a grease of any type. Grease can sometime harden, but I've never seen it get brittle, that's why I asked if they changed the wheel hub install instructions on the 2015 or newer machines.

Does anyone have a 2015 or newer service manual?
 

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I would much rather the axle pull out of the diff than using a Maverick axle clip that causes the CV to pull apart. I've had both.
The new oem axles have the Maverick clip on them now. I think the only difference is they wrap around the axle further. They won't cause any problems unless you over extend your plunge joint.

Neil.
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Yes, the circlip in the 2015 commander uses part number 705501832

The circlip in the 2016 commander uses part number 705501781 which is the same part as the Maverick.

But this is the circlip that goes into the differential, I wonder if the one in the wheel hub end of the CV is the same, as this part is not shown in the Can-Am parts list as it's part of the axle assembly and not a separate orderable part.

Do you think I need to replace the current circlips that I have? The reason that I ask, is that I already inserted one before looking at the service manual that says this is to be replaced each time. I didn't see any damage and it seems to be holding.

Without beating on the CV joint, I don't know how I'd remove the one that I already inserted. So how would one remove this if needed without hurting the CV joint itself? The whole thing is covered in grease, so it would be a messy job to work on (yes I realize I'd have to clean and replace the grease if I did need to do this).
 

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I would much rather the axle pull out of the diff than using a Maverick axle clip that causes the CV to pull apart. I've had both.
The new oem axles have the Maverick clip on them now. I think the only difference is they wrap around the axle further. They won't cause any problems unless you over extend your plunge joint.

Neil.
I see. I haven't looked at a Maverick clip, just everybody saying how much stronger it is. My new rear OEM axle last Fall had the same clip as before.
 

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Yes, the circlip in the 2015 commander uses part number 705501832

The circlip in the 2016 commander uses part number 705501781 which is the same part as the Maverick.

But this is the circlip that goes into the differential, I wonder if the one in the wheel hub end of the CV is the same, as this part is not shown in the Can-Am parts list as it's part of the axle assembly and not a separate orderable part.

Do you think I need to replace the current circlips that I have? The reason that I ask, is that I already inserted one before looking at the service manual that says this is to be replaced each time. I didn't see any damage and it seems to be holding.

Without beating on the CV joint, I don't know how I'd remove the one that I already inserted. So how would one remove this if needed without hurting the CV joint itself? The whole thing is covered in grease, so it would be a messy job to work on (yes I realize I'd have to clean and replace the grease if I did need to do this).
I would have to see it to make a call but I would think it will be fine. The worst thing that could happen is your joint explode at 50mph and leave you stranded.
 

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Correct , I have reused a axle shaft clip before . If it's not damaged its fine .


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Discussion Starter #18
They are going to fix the lift issue over travel will not be a issue after reinstall.
Do you think an axle-stender will fix this over travel issue? That's the current thinking, but I don't have experience with the axle-stenders so I'm not sure the full effect of them.
 
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