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Everything posted by agamble

  1. It is really luck of the draw on who the technician is. The technician I had had no issues, and in fact preferred using the newer gasket. I've heard of people battling with them about installing the newer style gasket, which I've experienced in the past.
  2. The windshield has leaked on the passenger side for quite some time. Anytime that it rained or snowed, regardless of the amount, I was guaranteed a puddle on the passenger floor board if the Jeep was left outside. The easy solution that I had been doing was parking it in the garage and not driving it when there was precipitation in the forecast. I finally got a crack in the windshield from a stray rock the other day so it was time for a new windshield. I set up an appointment with Safelite, and when to the shop to have the windshield replaced. Figured I'd be in and out in the 2-hour window that they gave. 30 minutes into the appointment the technician asks me to follow him out in the bay, where it begins to show the rust running around the outside edge of the windshield. He lets me know that there is too much rust to put in the new windshield and I need to take it to a body shop or clean it up myself before they can install the new windshield. So I schedule an appointment for later that day for a mobile technician to come out and remove the windshield. Once it was removed I began the tedious task of removing all the previous eurathane and rust accumulated from over the years. I think it was a little rusty. Unsurprisingly most of the rust was on the passenger side of the cab. The silver lining in this is the rust was superficial. A days' worth of work with a wire wheel, wire brush, and 60 grit sand paper had all the rust removed. When only shiny metal was showing a wipe down with xylene and denatured alcohol removed any remaining grease, oil, or what have you. Then a nice healthy coat of auto primer was laid down to protect the exposed metal. With all the rust removed the mobile tech returned and installed the new windshield with the newer style molding.
  3. Thanks! I probably never would have attempted the repair if I hadn't seen it done before. I should be thanking you.
  4. The second item that I tackled was the parking brake assembly. The lever had too much play in the left/right direction preventing the parking brake from remaining engaged. This subject has been covered various times and I won't go into much detail as I followed two excellent write-ups: I started out by following the write-up done by A-man930. The only change was instead of a 3/8" stud, I was going to use a 1/4" stud. The stud would only need to compress the parts of the assembly together, as the arm would still rotate on the rivet. However, after drilling out the rivet, the 1/4" tap that I was using broke off. After a few hours of unsuccessfully attempting to get the broken tap out I gave up and started following the write-up done by ftpierceracker1. Here I was able to learn from his experience and instead of removing the rivet and hump on the mounting plate I cut the rivet flush on the front side (side that faces into the cab). Then I drilled out the rivet with a 1/2" drill bit. This still left the the back side (side that faces wall of the cab) of the rivet tac welded to the assembly. With the 1/2" hole I was able to see were the rivet met up with the mounting plate, this allowed me to use a 3/4" drill bit to drill out the backside face of the rivet until I was almost to the mounting plate. Then using a cut off wheel on a Dremel I made relief cuts in the remaining outer portion of the rivet. The areas not tac welded to the mounting plate fell right off. I then used a grinding bit on the Dremel to remove the remaining portions of the rivet. It was a bit more tedious but I did not have to repair the mounting plate. With the rivets removed the mounting plate was given a refresh. To reassemble the assembly I used a 1/2" x 2-1/4" Bolt cut down to about 1-1/8". This length was chosen as it allowed for the pedal arm to rotate on the smooth portion of the bold, while providing enough threads to thread on the lock nut. I bought low profile lock nuts for the 1/2" and 5/16" button screw that were used to reassemble the parking brake assembly. The low profile locking nut it about the same depth as the original rivet back was, so it won't affect the assembly when you install it back into the truck. Final product:
  5. With all the down time from COVID-19 I've been taking care of my lunch list of items on the Comanche. First item that I tackled was the leaking brake line connections. The drivers side front and the passenger side rear brake lines were leaking at the connection point of the hard and soft lines. On top of the leak the flare nut on the drivers side front had been stripped at some point in its life, which required the use of some vice grips to tighten and loosen the nut. I've avoided reflagging the line as I did not want to remove the lines from the Comanche and didn't want to wrestle with the flaring tool in cramped quarters. While surfing the internet I came across an inline flaring tool by Titan Tools. I found one at the local O'Reilly's autoparts for about $40. The tool makes double flares on 3/16" or 4.75 mm steel, copper, or nickel brake line. Step 1: With the positioning bolt in the flaring tool, insert the brake line until it is stopped by the positioning bolt. Then tighten the two locking screws to secure the line in place. Step 2: Remove Positioning Bolt and insert the OP1 end of the punch. Tighten until the hexagon on the punch sits flush on the tool. Step 3: Remove the OP1 punch, reverse and insert and tighten OP2 end of the punch until the hexagon of the punch is flush with the tool. Loosen lock screws and remove the flaring tool, and viola; perfect double flares. I was able to replace the nuts and relate both lines in 30 minutes.
  6. Being under the Jeep I addressed another issue I was having. The Boostwerks Engineering 231HD Linkage was giving me fits. You would think with such a simple design (two FK rod ends, two jam nuts, and random nuts) to connect everything it would be simple to operate. No matter how much I adjusted and fine tuned the linkage I could not get the transfer case to stay in 4Lo while driving. It should shift into 4Lo, but as soon as I went to crawl forward it would pop out of gear. I've adjusted and played with the linkage length while under the Jeep, and it would go into 4Lo. But as soon I went to drive it would pop out of gear. It appeared that the transfer case lever would contact the center console before it could lock fully into gear so as soon as torque was applied it would pop out of gear. I was getting to my wits end when I stumbled on a simple solution. Who would think something as simple as swapping which side the linkage attaches to the shift lever and transfer case actuator would fix the issue. I did not change the linkage length. Ever since I swapped the sides the shift lever engages 4Lo and staysin gear while driving.Before After
  7. When the transmission cross member bolts tore from the frame it caused the drive train to shift to the drivers side. As the yoke ground against the upper control arm both of the "centering tabs" (not sure what the technical names of these are) broke off. As I see these as more of a centering device I have always been unsure of how vital these "tabs" are, especially as I prefer to use the u-bolt straps. My thoughts are the u-bolts are really what apply the pressure and prevent the end caps from flying off during rotation, but I don't really feel like testing this theory out. So in place of unnecessarily testing out my theory the yoke needed to be replaced. Earlier in the build I swapped out the original disconnect HP Dana 30 for a non-disconnect HP Dana 30 from a 98' XJ. This eliminated the weaker axle tube and the two piece axle for the single more "stout" axle shaft. The 98' HP Dana 30 uses a shim pack for pinion bearing pre-load adjustment, meaning the yoke torque is independent, as the bearing pre-load is set by the shims. So I didn't have to worry about a collapsible crush-sleeve that is tightened until the correct pinion pre-load is obtained. Regardless of how the pinion pre-load is achieved I've read multiple threads that recommend recording rotational drag of the pinion, however as I could not find a definitive answer to this I am thinking it is not necessary.To swap the yoke I went about it in a more crude manner as my torque wrench is broken and the slow turning with a breaker bar kept causing the Jeep to creep forward instead of breaking the nut loose. To keep the torque in the ball park I marked where the nut aligned on the yoke with a paint pen then removed the lock nut with an impact wrench. To a whole 5 seconds. With the nut off yoke slid right off with little effort. The new yoke was aligned in the same orientation, slid into place and I use the impact wrench to tighten the lock nut back down. While tightening I went at a "controlled" pace and torqued until the paint mark on the lock nut was in the "same" general alignment that it was previously.
  8. With the Chassis Saver Cured, a new battery tray from Dirtbound Offroad was installed. New battery in its place.
  9. I was of the same train of thought. The bolts only need to keep the cover in place.
  10. There’s nothing worse than starting your Jeep only to have the battery fail you. Having now experienced this several times in the last few months, I finally came to my senses and decided it was time to really address the issue. It's been said, a Jeep with a performance battery will never fail to start, whether you’re in the blistering cold of Montana or in the dry heat of the Arizona plains. Whether you choose a performance battery from any of the top brands, you’re guaranteed to get a battery that will get you to where you need to go. A performance battery with advanced AGM technology and up to 1500 pulse amps is guaranteed to outlast conventional starter batteries. After reading through specs and reviews on several different kinds of batteries I finally settled on the dual purpose (deep cycle/starting) X2 manufactured by NorthStar. I opted for dual post to connect the auxiliary power supplies for various low draw accessories to the front post. I spent more than I really should have on a battery, but my hope is that it will last several years before I need a replacement. To go along with the new battery I got a new battery tray from Dirtbound Offroad to replace the stock cracked and deformed battery tray . When I pulled the old battery tray out I found rusting had occurred on the nuts holding the tray in place, as well as beneath the battery tray. Even though I had soaked the bolts in PB Blaster a couple of days prior I snapped off the stud on the first bolt on tried to remove. A lot of heat from a butane torch and the remaining two bolts came out with a bit of groaning. I still had a bit of Chassis Saver on hand and put a couple coats down to stop further rusting. I let the Chassis Saver to cure for 48 hrs. before installing the battery tray and new battery. The front post provides 12V power to the head light harness and the Eaton E-locker. New battery in place.
  11. I hope that the TJ fitting solves the issue with the fluid leaking out. Which end of the braided hose do/did you have connected to the master cylinder? The end with the 90 degree bend should be connected to the master cylinder.
  12. I know you said you used a lot from advanced adapters. When I did my swap I used individual parts. When going from an internal slave to an external slave, there are various ways to go about getting the clutch master cylinder and external slave connected. One method is to buy the complete kit. The issue that I have heard with this is that it requires the drilling of a new upper mounting hole in order for the later clutch master cylinder. I have no personal experience with this so I cannot confirm this. To avoid headache and making unnecessary holes I went the second option. AdvancedAdapters sells hydraulic fittings that allows youth retain the year specific clutch master cylinder while mating it up to the slave cylinder at the bell housing. You can order the complete setup (Jeep Slave Cylinder Assembly For NV3550/AX15 Bellhousing, P/N 716340) or you can purchase the parts individually. Why I don't know but, I had a brand new slave cylinder laying around so I purchased the individual parts. To connect the stainless steel hose (716130-60, 60" length or 716130H, 42" length) you will need the early master cylinder fitting that is a 7/16 inverted flare style (P/N 716130F). This fitting will thread right into the clutch master cylinder. Then to connect the stainless steel hose to the slave cylinder you will need the TJ Master Cylinder Fitting and Slave Cylinder Fitting (P/N 716130 TJ) and O-ring (P/N 716130OR). Once its all connected you will need to prime the hydraulic system. The slave cylinder does not have a bleeder valve. In order to prime the hydraulic system you'll need to let the push fully extend (don't cut or break the retaining straps that come with the slave cylinder). While holding the slave cylinder at a 45 degree angle, pour the fluid into the slave until its full. At this point insert the fitting, o-ring, and hose. And place in the retaining pin. Once secured with the retaining pin hold the slave in a vertical position with the rod pointing down to the floor and slowly push the rod inward about 1". After about 10-15 strokes there should not be any air bubbles in the master cylinder reservoir.
  13. Pulling up to the 4-way stop there was a loud pop, followed by a loud grinding sound that quickly went away. I quickly turned around and headed home. Once I got the Jeep into the garage, I was in a rush and already running late, I made a quick glance and noted that the front driveshaft was hanging down and left it at that. At the time I thought it was odd that the front u-joint on the driveshaft would randomly blow up like while driving. Later on, with more time to inspect I noted that the centering tabs on the front yoke had been broken and the free swinging driveshaft had marred up the upper control arm. Still thinking it was odd that the front u-joint would blow up and cause the centering tabs to break off was odd, I did more searching and that when I found the issue. All three cross member bolts on the passenger side had broken off (I neglected to get before pictures). It then became clear that when the bolt and/or bolts broke, the drivetrain was pushed to the driver side where the driveshaft then contacted the upper control arm, breaking the yoke and front u-joint. The nuts welded into the frame for the cross member had broken free, so using new bolts was not in the cards. I ended up welding the outer long arm brackets in place. Welding the outer brackets in place required removing the undercoating. Which will be replaced as soon as the temps get back above 60's. While I was under the Jeep, I took the opportunity to install the new diff guard that I'd had laying around. The diff guard came with new mounting hardware for the guard. Not wanting to have half the bolts be 1/2' bolt and the other half 3/16 allen head, a run to the hardware store was made to get 5 more. While getting additional hardware I noticed that there was no price difference between the stainless steel bolts and regular steel. I ended up getting 10 stainless steel bolts so they all matched.
  14. A good How-to video on cleaning and repairs power window switches.
  15. Wanting to keep the cab looking as stock as possible I bought the '84 - '96 Jeep Cherokee and Comanche In-Dash DIY Carling Style 4 Switch Panel from Prime4x4 that replaces the factory clock. I went with the Prime4x4 switch panel as it is a steel construction vs being plastic that other manufacturers offer. After installing the Eaton E-locker wiring harness, the supplied rocker switch was too large to mount into the Prime4x4 switch panel. Rather than enlarging the opening of the panel I purchased a Contura V rocker switch at otrattw.net (wanting to have all the switches match I bought additional switches for accessories to be added at a future date) for the locker.
  16. Thanks! It’s almost complete.....or so I keep telling myself. But as anyone here can attest to, I am only deceiving myself. There’s always something that will need to be done or changed. No. The Wildernest is not Comanche specific. The canopy a Tent Top Model Number 91/ Tip Top Model Number T91 and is designed to go with a number of light weight long bed pick-up trucks, essentially a one size fits all approach. While the fit isn’t perfect, it’s a close fit not to be aesthetically unpleasant. Height is ~1.5" below the roof line. Width wise is almost a perfect fit. Length is ~1” too long leaving a small gap between hatch and tail gate. For a complete setup on the long-bed Comancheit requires a rear door wedge, which I don't have, nor ever seen. Here is a link to a brochure listing model numbers: http://www.therangerstation.com/resources/pdf_documents/Wildernest_OEM.pdf.
  17. Appreciate it. The one minor issue is the window crank barely scraps the speaker cover when rolling the windows up and down.
  18. While it's been more of an inconvenience than a problem, I became tired of not having operating windows over the summer. Both windows would roll down but I was unable to get them back up without applying power directly to the motors. So for the summer months I drove around with the vent windows as the only way to get air moving through the cab. The replacement doors that came from an XJ came equipped with power windows and locks. When the windows were first wired the the drivers side control panel only operated the drivers door window and lock. A wiring harness from 4-door Cherokee with power windows and locks was later installed to connect and operate both doors. After the install the locks and windows worked.......for about a day. At first I thought the passenger window regulator died on me while I was testing it out. It would go down with no problems. Going back up I would have to flick the switch on both the master control switch and passenger switch multiple times to get it to go back up. However, I couldn't hear the motor running. I traced the the issue to the wiring harness connection in the master control switch. The wire pins (located inside the resin) were not making good contact with the window switches. I couldn't address the problem without destroying the wiring harnesses. Several runs to different junkyards provided plenty of donors for a replacement wiring harness, none gave confidence of lasting long term. There was one 86' - 96' XJ that had manual window regulators. After giving it some thought, the manual windows would better meet my needs and eliminate unneeded electrical issues. Swapping the regulators is straight forward, with the window rolled down, with a T-40 star bit remove the bolt holding the window glass to the regulator, once removed tape the window up and out of the way. Remove the rivets holding the window regulator and door braces in place. With them removed the regulator can be removed with some finagling. The manual window regulator was them put in its place. The indoor panels currently in the Jeep didn't have the hole necessary for the regulator cranks. I grabbed the panels from window donor, but they were not in as good of condition. I modified the nicer ones to allow for the window cranks. Using the second panel as a template a 1" hole saw was used to make the window crank opening. With the window regulators swapped and the window crank hole made the door panels were reinstalled on the doors.
  19. Awhile back the axle was given a refresh before taking it to the guys at Just Differentials to it regard and a locker installed. The big questions were which gears and which locker? The Comanche started with 30" tires and the typical stock gearing of 3.07 gears. The 30" tires were robbing the power from the Comanche, and with the recent jump to 33" tires without a reduction in gears robbed even more power. Earlier in the build process I found a HP Dana 30 with 4.10 gears on Craigslist for a good price. The popular 4.10 ratio is a great ratio that will bring the ratio and tire size to almost stock. The debate on which kind of locker is as hot as the debate of automatic vs manual transmissions. Everybody has an opinion. Some say the lunchbox style locker have the edge. Lunchbox lockers are locked when you need it to be locked, but can't be unlocked. While others swear by the selectable variety, with its open daily streetablilty being a strong lure. There truly is no right answer, it really boils down to what you need/want out of your vehicle. For my application I chose to go with a Eaton E-locker. I chose the E-locker for its simplicity and less components. While failure in the air system does not occur frequently, it will render the ARB useless. With more components there are more areas for failure. My thoughts are as long as there is power and the wiring is connected there should be a locker. As my build is for overloading I don't want to be in a scenario where I am in a remote location and I have a failure in the air system, particularly in the differential housing. Before scheduling the appointment I already knew which direction I was going but their customer service rep, Scott, was double checking my selections and why and talked me through all the available options. With everything scheduled the axle was dropped of for the install and back in my possession within the week. With the axle ready to go in the rear suspension was installed to match the front. For rear leaves I purchased Rusty's 4" leaves. I've never had issues with Rusty's products and the height matched the 4" coils from Ironrock offroad.The disc brake conversion that was put on the previous axle was swapped over to this axle. The last iteration the stock bolts that hold the retaining plate to the housing were used. The only drawback was that they were almost too short. This time around longer bolts were used. The only needed modification is to grind down one side of the bolt so it can sit again the axle tube. The weight of the Wildernest was causing the previous leaves to sag prematurely. Airlift airbags were put on to help carry the weight of the Wildernest (~300 lbs). When it was first installed the lower mounting brackets were not compatible with the Comanche's suspension. To make it work at the time the lower mounting brackets were welded directly to the axle tube. This made it so lower airbag bolts were inaccessible and the u-bolts virtually unremovable. Not good on either account. This time around some modifications were made to make airbag lower mounting bracket removable, allowing for access to the lower airbag bolts and removal of the u-bolts. 3/8" plate was welding to the sides of lower mounting brackets. With a few test fits the plate was trimmed down to allow for clearance of the shocks/shock mounting tabs and the backing plates. Then holes for u-bolts were measured and drilled into the 3/8' plate. With the airbags removed for the first time in years the fittings, hoses and hardware were replaced. For the outer axle tube 3" u-bolts were used for diameter increase as you go towards the outer axle tube. U-bolts were used for the outer mounts on both sides. The u-bolts didn't have enough thread engagement without the leaf pack, so a large stack of washers was used as a spacer to compensate. The original plan was to use u-bolts for the inner mounts as well. However, the airbag sat to far inboard to allow the u-bolts to be used. An alternative plan was devise using bolts to hold the inner bracket to the axle tube.
  20. I just bought 4 new bolts for my front drive shaft. If memory serves I bought 5/16-24 (fine thread) with 1-1/2 length enough length to use a lock washer and flat washer.
  21. At the suggestion of DesertRat1991 I rotated the upper shock mount adapters 90 degrees to be perpendicular to the lower shock mount. Having changed the gearing to 4.10s and the tire size to 33s on the Jeep, using the gear chart below I replaced the factory speedometer gear with the most correct tooth gear. 55-93 Long Shaft Cable Driven Speedometer Gear Chart Tire Size 44" 42" 40" 38" 36" 35" 34" 33" 32" 31" 30" 29" 28" 27" 5.38 Ratio 34 36 - - 42 43 - - - - - - - - 5.13 Ratio 32 34 36 - - 41 42 43 - - - - - - 4.88 Ratio - 32 34 36 - - - 41 43 - - - - - 4.56 Ratio 28 - 32 34 36 37 - - - 42 43 - - - 4.10 Ratio - 26 28 - - 33 34 - 36 37 - - - 41 3.73 Ratio - - - - 26 28 - - 32 33 34 - 36 37 3.55 Ratio - - - - 27 28 - - - 32 33 34 - 36 3.07 Ratio - - - - - - - - 26 27 28 - - - The gear and tire combination that I am now running fell between a 34 and 36 toothed speedo gear. I went with the larger of the two. Remove the bracket holding the assembly in place and pull it out of the transfer case. Swap the speedo gear and put it back in place. Make sure to "clock" the new gear to match the number range on the housing. You want the bottom bracket peg to line up with the range notch you need. Tighten it down and you should be good to go. If you don't get a reading, make sure the housing is turned correctly and the speedo cable or sensor peg is fully meshed with the speedometer cable gear shaft.
  22. The sway bar links are indeed too short and make the sway bar arms parallel with ground. They were salvaged from a lower lifted Jeep as I wanted the quick disconnects and I have not purchased longer ones. Currently I am making do with what I had available. When I had the stock sway bar there was ample space between the coil spring and the sway bar, however when I upgraded to a thicker V8 grand Cherokee sway bar the sway bar started contacting the coil spring. Please don't think I am picking fights as I post here to gain others insight and appreciate the feeback; the manner/punctuation in which you wrote the last sentence comes across as rather condescending and other may take offense.
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