I have a 1983 John Deere 318 that I did a Total restoration on late last fall. I Placed a New Built Onan P-218 in it and when I looked at the drive shaft I discovered that it had some slop to it as it would wiggle up and down some. I ordered the new Improved heavy duty style drive shaft yoke that has the Two Bolt's through it. I had to Take off one of the Hydro Pump Line's off of the Hydro Pump to gain enough clearance to remove the drive shaft, so that the front Yoke cleared the area up front where it is a Tight fit close to the lower dash sheet metal when taking it out from the top I then was able to remove the drive shaft to Place the new rear Yoke to it. Once the drive shaft is out, I checked both Universal Joint's and they were tight and good with No Noticeable catch's to them they rotated smoothly so I decided to leave them in place, Rather than put new U-joint's on the drive shaft assembly. I Placed the drive shaft in my Bench vice to remove the Two half Moon clip's that hold the Rear Yoke in place, then used a shallow socket to Push the U-joint far enough out of the Yoke to remove the U-Joint needle bearing cap's, but be cautious to Not drop the Universal joint cap's out onto the bench when Pressing them out of the drive shaft as it may disturb the Needle bearing's inside the U-Joint cap's, or worse yet drop some of the small needle bearing's out of the retainer Cap Portion of the U-Joint.
I Used a dab of Lucas brand Heavy duty Synthetic Grease inside both Universal joint cap's while they were off the Universal joint to keep the needle bearing's all in place before Placing them back onto the Universal Joint. Once I had the Two Half Moon clip's back in Place I greased the front and rear U-joint's then removed the drive shaft from my bench vice. I Put the drive shaft back in my Tractor and took down the fly wheel bolt's to their specified torque & cranked the engine up. I noticed a weird slight vibration that was not there prior to switching the drive shaft yoke's. I consoled with Forum member Bob P. and he was the one that told me that I should have Marked my fly wheel bolt and Yoke location before I Pulled my drive shaft, so I had to rotate the front of the drive shaft Three time's in different bolt up Position's on the engine's fly wheel bolt Pattern before the vibration disappeared. When I removed my drive shaft I was Not aware that the the Position of the drive shaft would make any difference but it did in my case so I would suggest before you Pull your drive shaft that You Take a minute and mark it's current location on the fly wheel. Once I found the right spot for the drive shaft to be my vibration went away and all is good, but it can be Frustrating placing and Moving the drive shaft to different Bolt up location's on the fly wheel due to there Not being much room in there to swing a wrench when Tightening the front drive shaft bolt's. I hope this helps and saves you some Frustration when switching your Rear drive shaft Yoke, Kurt