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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Greetings '97-'04 Nissan D22 fans. Nissan discontinued their Free Running Hub Assembly (part 40260-8B400). The hub consists of two sub-assemblies, an inner-splined washer ("Spindle Washer") and a snap ring (of precise thickness). After installing the axle through the knuckle, the "Fixed Cam Assembly" slides over the axle and engages with notches in the end of spindle. Then, the "Spindle" washer slides on over the axle, engaging with the splines, and finally one-of-several choices of snap rings is installed into a groove on the axle shaft.

The snap ring holds the Fixed Cam Assembly in place and, it controls the amount of axial end-play (see page AX-19 in the factory service manual. It says, "...select a suitable snap ring...(0.004 − 0.0177 in) If axial end play is not within the specified limit, select another snap ring.)" This suggests that axial end play could affect axle operating-life.

Anyway, the Chinese copies of Nissan's Free Running Hub do fit, but: there's no separate fixed cam assembly and, no spindle washer or snap ring (!?). Instead, four dogs on the underside of the Chinese hub engage with the knuckle, and the axle is free to float inside the knuckle i.e., axial end play isn't controlled.

Anyone know - definitively - if lack of control over axial end play is a "problem"? Or, will the axles' service life be unaffected?
 

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I've been running my manual hubs without the snap rings for a while no problem. Only real issue they might cause is not providing a good seal on the back side of the hub.
 
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