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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
:b5: Having worked extensively on dozens of my own vehicles including numerous Audis and Volkswagens, I have apparently wandered into the Black Forest with the recent purchase of my wife’s 2000 Passat (1.8T, manual transmission). It runs great, but with 148k miles, it needs the usual maintenance including an ABS module repair (done) and new axles.

Acceleration and deceleration generate the typical torque shudder or vibration indicative of worn CV joints, although it’s minor. Correcting minor problems early keeps you from paying for bigger ones later. My wife didn’t want me to put too much into this commuter so I ordered a set of new, low cost axles from a California parts distributor.

Those familiar with this road know there are two inner axle flange types for the B5 Passat: the serviceable type where the connecting bolts slide through the perimeter of the inner CV housing (seem to be the most common), and the tripod, non-serviceable type that are attached through dog ears at the perimeter of the inner CV flange. My wife’s Passat has the dog eared flange.

After the new axles arrived and after removing the worn OEM axles for comparison, I noticed the spline shaft on the new axles was larger. This sent me back to do more research. Every aftermarket axle supplier I found listed the dog eared inner flange axle as having the larger 38 tooth spline, and the non-dog eared inner flange axle as having the smaller 33 tooth spline. The axles I received are the correct OEM lengths for each side respectively, just the wrong spline size.

Axles generally listed for B5 automatics have the dog eared inner flange and 33 tooth spline, like my manual transmission OEM’s, but are a good inch shorter. So how did this seemingly run-of-the-mill, manual transmission Passat end up with an OEM axle configuration that no one makes aftermarket axles for?

Before someone gives the ubiquitous solution as “Raxles” (yes, I’ve purchased their axles before), I decided to see if changing to 38 spline hubs might be a smarter, long term solution for compatibility's sake, since the rest of the aftermarket, axle-building world seems to think my wife’s Passat is a Frankenstein. Of the hubs I researched, the ones listed for 1.8L B5 Passats are 33 splines. The ones listed for the 2.8L are 38 splines. There was no other determining factor. Keep in mind that if hubs are changed, bearings will need to be changed as well since the assemblies must be pressed out and in.

There has been little mention of this hybrid, dog eared-flange/33 spline issue in the forums, which tells me our new old B5 must be very special, and not necessarily in a good way. It would be nice to hear from anyone else who might have also run into this situation. :driving:
 

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do you have an autoparts international around you? i find they are the only ones that carry the correct 2000 1.8t manual axles.
 

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Old Man Tan
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I've had even more problems with my bastard child 01 b5. the 98 & 99 manual trans had used the serviceable type, and autos used tripodals. then in 2000 they went to all tripodals. then in early 01 the 1.8t manual went back to servicable, and in late 01, everything changed over to all tripodal. as far as i know, 1.8t always had smaller splines on the outer end and v6's always had the larger splined outer end. I never ran into an issue with that.
 

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Pretty sure this is the same issue AtomicAlex had a few years ago. She had Raxles make a set to fit her car. (also a 2000 1.8T 5sp)
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
do you have an autoparts international around you? i find they are the only ones that carry the correct 2000 1.8t manual axles.
None locally that I know of. I'll check into them, though.

It would seem that an outer CV joint with the 33 tooth spline would swap with a 38 spline unit if the axle tubes were the same design. I've rebuilt CV's before. Don't want to do it again. A request has been sent to Marty at Raxles to see what he can do. May have to put the failing OEM's back on until we can figure it out.

I need to clarify my original hub-swapping comment. From what I can tell, the 33 spline hub uses the 75mm bearing while the 38 spline hub uses the 82mm bearing. Swapping hubs would, therefore, require swapping the entire spindle to accommodate the correct bearing size. Doable, probably not practical unless my buddy at the wrecking yard will give me a really good deal. We'll see what Marty says, first.

Something else interesting. Application references found for the larger hubs on the 1.8L B5 and B5.5 Passats include engine codes AUG, AWM and BHW. Mine is an ATW. Same basic engine as the others, but for some reason the engineers chose to use the smaller hubs with this particular engine code. So our Passat really is "special." :crazy:

Good thing my wife's current commuter, a 1995 Jetta with 260K miles (replaced a ton of stuff on it at around 200K including the head gasket) is still running well and leaking no oil whatsoever, although about 2 quarts a month of it is going out the exhaust. It's ready for high school duty.

By the way, the universally hated, $60, lifetime warranty, AutoZone, 'start-rusting-straight-out-of-the-box' axles I installed on this Jetta at around 210k miles are still working great. Boots haven't even ripped yet.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
do you have an autoparts international around you? i find they are the only ones that carry the correct 2000 1.8t manual axles.
Looks like Autopart International is an east coast based only business. I'm in the west. Their listing for axles show it to be a wholesale only option, which means in-store purchase only.

A regional manager at my local NAPA went through every axle option they had. Nothing.

FYI, the axles I purchased originally are new from Wonh Industries through a company called Wholesale Import Parts. They look decent for being $75 each with shipping. Yes, they're Chinese.

Trying to get a refund has been a nightmare. The company first told me that I'd have to pay for shipping back plus the restocking fee because the vehicle I listed was a "Standard (manual transmission)". They apparently didn't read anything in the "Reason for Request" I filled out that clearly stated which axles had been ordered for what vehicle and that they were correct according to their own website information. I even supplied the OEM part numbers and pictures to document the issue.

When threatened with being reported to the usual consumer protection groups, they issued a shipping label, but stated that they would have to inspect the axles and if found to be the correct axle for the application, they would charge the restocking fee. That's reassuring since they didn't know about this application in the first place. I'm not sending them back just yet.

Some companies just don't get it. Customers are the life blood of any successful business. NEVER SCREW YOUR CUSTOMERS.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Just to followup, even if no one cares, I finally got a full refund from Wholesale Import Parts. The "manager" still insinuated plainly that it was all my fault and that I should have known what size axle splines the car had before ordering. Yeah, because everyone expects the retailer's ordering information to be incomplete and pulls the axles off the vehicle to measure them first before placing an order, not.

Even as of today I don't believe Raxles is open yet because of Marty's plane crash. A week or so ago while ordering an upper control arm on Rock Auto, I found a set of AUP axles that stated "flanged inner with 33 tooth hub spline" for the manual transmission. Those are the ones. They had one of each side available and I got them both for around $200, no core charge. Need to change the bearings before installing. They're heavy buggers and look better than the Wohn axles (no heat discoloring on the outer CV case). They also have heavy duty boots, although they're still the 3-rib design rather than the OE style 4-rib I prefer. Since I can keep the OE axles, might just rebuild them someday just in case.
 

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Passat B5 CV Axle/Halfshaft from August 1999 to February 2001

Hey... I am glad you posted this

I have an 01 B5, manufactured in 06/00 (engine code AUG, Transmission 5spd manual code EHV, ASR, FWD).

I went through 4 different Advance Auto axle pairs (just aesthetically matching them up) in late October of 2011, until finally one of their managers went down the road to "API" ("Auto Parts International" for those who don't know the acronym) with a set of axles that did bolt up to my trans. Those Axle's last me a up until about a month ago when I began to get a bad inner CV vibration on the passenger side, then withing a month on the drivers side as well.

So, I went through the BS with Advance Auto again (I should say (for intrinsic moral purpose) that the manager at the AAP I am dealing with now is much more intelligent and helpful; because the parts came from API, he is basically losing money on all 3 sets they have delivered to my uncles garage where my car is now stuck with no axles, as I exchanged the vibrating pair for the first non-usable set), because the parts are 5 months old... Thus, I am not paying for a part that is still under warranty!

So, as I noted above, I have again been through three non-compatible sets (one of the axles on the second set (from API) was used and put back in the box, and none of them have come with the Axle to Hub stretch bolt).

After yesterday (7 hours I was pulling my hair out) was spent on Google, phone calls to the Dealership parts counter and service departments, calling VW, calling API, AAP, forum reading, VIN decoding to find my car is technically a 2000 not a 2001 as it is registered, and just about getting to a point where I was going to up my collision and run that effin thing into a pole at 90mph, I came upon this data.

From API, VW and ECS tuning... For AUG and related vehicles (and this may not be correct so anyone in my boat check the replies please!!!)

CV Axles

From VW Dealer
Front L :8D0407451AX
Front R :8D0407452AX

From Auto Parts International
Front L :1700-83635
Front R :1700-83636

From ECS Tuning, listed as the OEM#
Front L :8D0407271AQ
Front R :8D0407272AQ

These are what I believe I have found to be CORRECT? and viable replacements for my OEM axles.

What I am concerned with after all of this is, are the API part #'s I have correct for my vehicle? Please re-assure me, hearing that I have the right parts coming from someone who owns and gives a crap about his VW would really make my stress level go down.

Thanks for your time, and I apologize for the lengthy post...

Jeremy
 

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Hi all, this is a message for anyone who is having problems tracking down these nightmare axles for their 2000/2001 passats. I had recently run into a problem obtaining a cv axle for my 2000 Passat gls wagon 1.8t FWD ATW engine code w/5speed manual transmission. My passenger side let go and it took me 3 days to finally track down the right part, after being given 4 of the wrong cv axles by auto parts stores as well as having no luck finding even a trace of this axle in stock from any online vendor. VW dropped the part years ago and never issued a replacement. These cv axles that were supposedly the “right” ones from the stores or online either had the wrong style tranny end mount or the length was too short (only 19/20 inches) or the hub end was too large and had 38 splines as opposed to the 33 my original cv axle had. Nobody lists the correct part for these 2000-2001 specific models. However after days of scouring the internet for information on these drive axles and getting the wrong ones from numerous stores or vendors, I finally found the right part and had it next day dropped at my local advance auto parts store. I asked raxles.com and they quoted me $250 for the part and then another $39 for shipping, and it wouldn’t have even shown up for 4-5 days. This one is around $80-$90 depending on your area, I am in New England and it was around $85 with tax and advance had it in store by noon the next day. It is a carquest part that most advances don’t stock in store but can still access ordering it from their carquest stock locations. Here is a link to the part: Advance Auto Parts - Down for Maintenance
It is carquest part number NCV23598 for anyone looking to find elsewhere online however be warned, it is not easy to match up without the specific measurements and whatnot. Again this is the passenger side, the collapsed length should measure roughly 600mm or 24.5” long, it has the flange style winged transmission mount, NOT the round “puck” style end with holes in it, and the hub end has the abs ring with a 33 spline hub. The 2002 cv axles look like they will work as they have the proper transmission end however, the hub ends although the same style are too big with too many splines (38) and this end will simply not fit into the hub assembly. I wouldn’t normally post in a thread so old but I wanted to offer some type of guidance to anyone else who may run into this issue, as it caused me nothing but lost time and headaches. If you need the driver side/left side then it will have the same winged tranny mount, the same hub end with 33 splines, but it will just be much shorter than the passenger side I listed with a collapsed length of approximately only 19-20 inches, not 24.5 inches. Thanks and I hope I can save even one person all the frustration that came with finding the proper cv axle.
 

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I have a pair of those in the garage somewhere, but I am pretty sure the boots are torn. In another week, I can use my arm and hope to start clearing it all out.
 

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With that one whole wall of shelf stock you got, you could probably build another car. :p
 
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