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Georgia: '92 4.0 Ho, Ax-15, 2Wd


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Thanks :yes: . The 4WD conversion was pretty straightforward, other than needing to have a rear driveshaft fabricated.  It's definitely something you want to tackle in stages, versus doing all at once.  The hardest part of the project for me was rebuilding the 3.07 D30 front axle.  It had been laying in the mud and fought me at every turn.  Once it was ready, physically transplanting the axle took one night. 

 

  I think the most difficult part is planning everything out and determining which parts you need/want for your build.  I relied heavily on the XJ factory parts manual and determined that I wanted an external slave AX-15, 96-99 non ABS front axle, and an external slip yoke NP231.  That builds the best of breed IMO.

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Picked up a set of Laredo door panels at the jy and installed them.  They cleaned up nicely:

 

Also picked up a complete spare AX-15/NP231 shift linkage in the event I still have issues with mine.  So far I've discovered that the handle and one of the links had been bent by the jy that pulled the front axle, T-case, linkage, etc.  Somehow this morphed into pulling the external slave AX-15 from the donor.  I was so far into it by the time I got the linkage out I couldn't bear to leave it behind:

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Getting ready for winter and went back to keep a few promises I made Georgia.  Changed the oil in the junkyard 4WD AX-15, replaced the OEM fuel hoses at the tank, and replaced the nasty ends on the battery cables.  I knew some of these items weren't in the greatest of shape but I hadn't realized how bad the fuel hoses were:

 

 

Sectioned it to see how far the hole on the return line went.  Yep, all the way through.  Somehow it wasn't leaking but still, not good:

 

 

Some fresh 30R9:

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I took Georgia on a good road trip today: 507 miles to be exact.  I left at 4:30AM and met a friend in Durham (4 hrs 1 way) to hit a few junkyards.  She ran like a champ, gave 19.5-20.6 mpg on the trip, and the odo rolled 272K on the way :).   The only issue was that the oil pressure gauge started wiggling erratically from 50psi-80+psi so I need a new sending unit.  No complaints here though . :MJ 1: .

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We got 15" of snow & ice and I've been out driving Georgia around all weekend.  The 4WD conversion works great!  I took her into town to get kerosene and saw 4 cars/trucks/SUVs in ditches along the way.  Drifting snow and 2" thick ice underneath meant 20-25mph driving into town.

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My steering wheel started oozing a black goo whenever Georgia sits in the sun.  It was making a mess:

 

  I hit the junkyard for a replacement and both the '92 YJ and '93 XJ had nothing to offer.  As it's a standard Saginaw column I looked through the GM cars/trucks and  found a 1990 V1500 Suburban that offered up a workable solution:

 

  It doesn't say Jeep but it's also not oozing goo.  It's in pretty decent shape overall.  $12 well spent.

 

It is the exact diameter of the OE Jeep wheel:

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Now that the weather is consistently nice it's time to give her a shot of spring TLC.  The RR fender flare picked up a tear and was not sitting flush with the bed (parking lot wound? big chunk of snow/ice this winter?).  I had a spare RR flare that I picked up a few years ago so I swapped it out.  Dirty but nice and solid under the flare:

 

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The mouse fur on the junkyard headliner I picked up was starting to bubble and it was black (I have a gray interior) so I've been keeping an eye out for another one.  I found an '86 MJ with a good backer and picked it up to experiment on.  Here's the donor:

 

Headliner fabric was crusty but the backer was good:

 

Cleaned it up and picked up some headliner fabric at the craft store:

 

Center line marked on fabric:

 

Headliner adhesive on backer:

 

It came out ok. A bit rough in the back but it's the first headliner I've ever tried to recover.  Still a lot better than the old one, which was full of bubbles.

 

Installed:

 

I also found an '89 MJ with a gray interior that donated new seat belts and a few misc interior panels.  It only had 125K miles so the belts were in good shape (mine were worn out).  I changed them out when I installed the headliner.  It's a good thing I swapped them as my old passenger's seat belt was missing the bob weight that locks up the inertia reel. I found it laying on the speaker.  I don't think it would have worked in a crash...just as well I didn't find out.

 

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FYI you don't need to mark the center line on the headliner fabric. Simply fold over half, do one half completely, then do the other half. Leave the excess all around until you have the main board done, then trim, fold & glue the overlap on the back side. You really only need to wrap the front & back on the board to give a cleaner edge look. Makes life easier.

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  I figured out the answer to a longstanding issue.  When it was humid and/or rainy outside Georgia's belt would either chirp or outright squeal.  I tried a few different brands of belt and found the Gatorback minimized the noise but it never stopped completely.  I checked pulley alignment with a straight edge and it seemed ok.  When I replaced the power steering pump I reused the OE plastic pulley and the depth needs to be set.  I noticed the '94-'95 XJs used a metal pulley with a deeper dish that is bottomed out when pressed on.  I grabbed one at the jy, swapped pulleys, and the problem went away :thumbsup: .

 

OE plastic pulley installed. If the pulley is bottomed out it's way off and won't even spin:

 

 

Metal & plastic pulleys side by side:

 

Metal pulley installed.  Note I pressed it on until it was bottomed out:

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Western NC.  Asheville area.  How did that AX-15 work out for you?

 

Oh crap... that's right, I already know you.  I'm a bit scatter-brained the last few days lol.

 

It's in my project truck.  I haven't taken it for a test drive because I don't have working brakes on it yet. I have reversed it out of the garage and then 1st geared it back in, using the e-brake to stop lol.  Seems to pull fine there.  I'll update you once I get it road-worthy.

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Awesome! I'm from Asheville and home on vacation every now and then. If you ever see the blue one give me a wave  :waving:

 

  Maybe we can do a meet & greet next time you're home.  I'll shoot you a PM

 

 

Oh crap... that's right, I already know you.  I'm a bit scatter-brained the last few days lol.

 

It's in my project truck.  I haven't taken it for a test drive because I don't have working brakes on it yet. I have reversed it out of the garage and then 1st geared it back in, using the e-brake to stop lol.  Seems to pull fine there.  I'll update you once I get it road-worthy.

 

 Stuff like that happens me all the time :laughin: .  It's cool the trans is doing ok so far.  Do you have a link to the project truck build?

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  I picked up a souvenir from the beach:  a '92 XJ manual trans tilt column :banana: .  It needs some TLC as someone partially disassembled it for the turn signal canceler cam.  It also had no key, however, it's only the 2nd M/T  MJ/XJ Saginaw tilt column I've seen (kicked myself for not grabbing the first).   The guys at Grand Strand Pick-N-Pull were cool and charged me for a non-tilt column as there were a few things missing but dang was it hot!

 

Donor XJ and column:

 

Column:

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 I thought I could remove the ignition lock cylinder on one of these without a key and it turns out you can.  I want to use the same key that I already have for the doors/glove box so i did some research and found the Strattec lock kit with tumblers.  I decoded Georgia's current key with a set of calipers, keyed the new lock to match, then assembled it.  I stuggled with it for a while but figured it out.  I could do another one in 20 minutes.

 

Here's the kit:

 

Tumblers selected and housing assembled:

 

 

Tumblers locked into place:

 

I decoded the key correctly!  Note the tumblers are all recessed with the key in the lock:

 

Installed in the column:

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 Whoever partially disassembled the tilt column at the junkyard was damaged the turn signal switch.  I didn't find any additional damage but needed a turn signal switch and cruise control wiring.  I found a willing donor at LKQ:  an '85 Corvette.  I grabbed the whole column:

 

Harvested the turn signal switch & cruise wiring. Transplanting both in the new column:

 

It turned out the tilt/telescoping Saginaw column uses a different canceler cam than the tilt column.  I'd torn down an airbag column from a Beretta and it donated both the canceler cam and snap ring. Note the additional 3 wires on the Corvette turn signal switch (orange, brown, black).  I still need to confirm this but I believe that is for cornering lights.  Had to splice the Vette cruise wiring to the stalk from a '94 Blazer as the C4 Corvette wiper switch is in the door panel:

 

Left a little extra in case I ever have to replace the stalk. After splicing and some heat shrink tubing:

 

Pulled the old column:

 

Interestingly the tilt column is about 2" longer than the standard one:

 

Found the OE cruise wire under the dash:

 

 

All done!

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Replaced the exhaust system.  The OE cat was on it's last legs and rattled horribly (catalyst had broken up) and the muffler wasn't far behind.  Ordered a replacement system from Rock Auto and the cat cost me $10 :).  It was priced at $85, Walker had a $50 mail in rebate, and the OE cat was worth $25 at the scrap yard.

Old "hybrid" system (salvaged Renix cat back mated to OE Mopar cat) and new one side by side:

 

Installed:

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