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XPLORx4

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About XPLORx4

  • Birthday 03/17/1969

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    http://xplorx4.shutterfly.com
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  • Your Pathfinder Info
    Some random photos and other info at xplorx4.shutterfly.com
  • Place of Residence
    Lockeford, CA
  • Mechanical Skill Level
    Standalone Tool Chest Mechanic
  • Your Age
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  • What do you consider yourself?
    Serious Off Road Enthusiast
  • Model
    LE
  • Year
    1997

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    Male
  • Location
    Lockeford, CA
  • Country
    United States
  • Interests
    Video games, Camping, Photography, Off-roading (duh!)

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  1. Gear ratios for the R50 (96-04 Pathfinder) are either 4.636 or 4.363, depending on original tire size (96-00), and 4.363 for 01-04. The ratios are NOT interchangeable with gears from the WD21, as the H233B rear end has 33-splines vs 31 on the WD21 H233B. Notably, the front diff (R200A) on the R50 has a reverse-cut ring/pinion, so no ratios other than 4.636 or 4.363 will work. Many, but not all R50's were equipped with rear LSD. There may be an orange "Use LSD oil only" sticker on the back of the rear diff. If not, the sticker may have come off or the LSD is open. However, the breakaway torque on the R50 stock LSD is abysmal, and largely unsuitable for any type of decent traction advantage on rugged terrain.
  2. To replace the springs, jack up the axle high enough so you can place jack stands under the rear trailing arm mounts on the chassis. Remove the tires and lower the axke. Then, you need to remove the lower shock bolts and the sway bar mounts from the axle. also loosen the rear brake manifold so you don’t overstretch the brake line. Once that’s done, you’ll be able to drop it low enough to replace the springs. To replace the left spring, put the floor jack under the right shock mount and raise it to flex the axle. The left spring will basically fall out. To replace the right spring, jack under the left shock mount.
  3. Bank 1 is passenger side. Try replacing the downstream O2 sensor first. It’s the one after the cat. “V” configuration engines have 4 O2 sensors. Inline engines (with only one exhaust manifold) have only 2 sensors.
  4. I believe the inner joint is easier to service than the outer. Once you remove the CV axle, you'll see that the inner joint has a cap to seal the grease in. You can pop it off by tapping on the cup to get the axle and roller bearings to press against the seal. Once the cap is off and you clean the grease out, there's a snap ring holding the bearings on the axle shaft. Remove that, and the inner boot can be removed and reinstalled. It'll be very messy, so wear some decent nitrile gloves and have plenty of shop rags to wipe up the grease. Pro tip: to remove the CV axle, unbolt the lower control arm from the subframe. A 1/2" impact driver makes short work of it; it's way easier than unbolting the strut from the knuckle.
  5. Sounds like it's the starter. If it does start after several attempts and the engine cranks quickly, meaning the battery is well-charged, it's likely the starter solenoid. I had a similar problem a few years ago. I would try to start the engine, but it would just click. After two or three quick twists of the key, it would finally start. I replaced the starter and all is back to normal.
  6. Yeah, it could be the sensor. I had low brake fluid at one time, and the BRAKE light illuminated. I added brake fluid, but the light didn't go out. I checked the reservoir again and noticed that the little white float sensor had become stuck and wasn't floating to the surface. I jiggled it around to let it rise to the surface, and the BRAKE light extinguished.
  7. As mentioned above, the warning light says "BRAKE" not "PARKING BRAKE". This light does not glow when you simply depress the brake pedal, nor does it glow if the brake switch is stuck (which would keep the rear brake lights on all the time.) The warning light indicates that something regarding the braking system needs attention, whether it's the parking brake being engaged or low brake fluid level, which lowers as the brake pads become more worn. Don't just top off the brake fluid; check your front brake pads, too. They may be due for replacement soon.
  8. Does this happen on all long drives at between 60-70mph, or only on certain sections of the road? It is possible that the road grade is just barely steep enough to cause the TC to unlock and lock. Do you have oversized tires? Does it also happen when you lighten up on the accelerator or only when under low load?
  9. I have manual hubs on my Pathfinder, and I have had it towed backwards (by a tow truck) before without any issues. You just need to be sure to lock the steering wheel and install magnetic tail lights on the hood of the Pathfinder while it's being towed.
  10. Go with KYB struts. You can purchase the rubber isolators separately from various online Nissan parts dealers. Replace the strut bearings and bump stop/boots as well. The correct Bilstein shock for a 2" lifted Pathfinder is 13-185552. With a 16" or 17" wheel with the correct offset, you can fit a 32" tire after some trimming or heat-remolding of the front plastic liners. You won't need to trim sheet metal, but you may need to remove or trim mud flaps. I have Ultra 175 Rogue wheels, 16x8 with 10mm offset. I was able to fit 265/75R16 tires with minor rubbing after trimming plastic wheel well liner. Tires cleared the strut tower as well. Camber bolts may be a good mod if you notice positive camber after lifting it. Manual locking hubs do prevent excessive wear and tear on the front CV boots while driving in 2WD. I have owned my 97 LE for 23 years. It has over 210K miles now. It's been lifted for 22 of those years. Ran 31x10.50R15 tires from 1999-2003, 32x11.50R15 tires from 2003-2006, 265/75-16's from 2006-2017. 285/75R16 tires 2017-present.
  11. When I upgraded my audio system, I replaced the Bose head unit, speakers, and amp. I wasn’t looking for a competition sound system, just something a little better than stock. I did add a subwoofer. In order to save money and avoid losing cargo room, I shoehorned an Alpine MRP-F450 amp into the cavity where the OEM Bose amp used to live. I have the amp powering the front speakers, with the rear channel bridged to power the subwoofer, a JL Audio Stealthbox. The head unit powers the rear speakers. As far as I’m aware, the stock Bose amp cannot be bridged to power a subwoofer. Besides, the Bose system is kinda strange anyway. The front speakers are amped in each door, and the rear speakers are driven by the amp behind the cargo panel. The head unit has no line-level output.
  12. The only difference between the steering racks on the early model R50s (XE/LE vs SE) is the turning radius. XE and LE originally came with 235/70R15 tires and SE came with 265/70R15. The XE/LE racks allowed for more steering angle at full lock left or right. To avoid rubbing with larger tires, the SE rack has a slightly reduced steering angle. So, if you have an XE or LE, you can install a rack from any model and if you happen to get an SE rack, you’ll just have a slightly increased turning radius. If you have an SE and you install an XE/LE rack, you might get some increased rubbing, especially on the fuel line cover at the rear of the right front wheel well. I have a 97 LE, and with 32x11.50R15 tires, 15x8 wheels and 2” of lift, I had persistent rubbing at full right steering, so I would just back off a bit to reduce the rubbing. I now have 6” of lift, and with 285/75R16 tires on 16x8 wheels, I don’t have rubbing at full right steering lock.
  13. If something in front is worn or loose, it’ll potentially induce a steering movement without your input. This could result in slight side to side body roll that feels the same as rear sway.
  14. The "roll over" sway is generally caused by bad lower control arm bushings. The upper links do less to locate the axle forward/aft, they primarily keep the axle from "wrapping" during acceleration or braking. The lower links do more to keep both sides of the axle in the same relative position beneath the car. If you're convinced the front suspension is OK, I would revisit the condition of the bushings in the rear lower links. It is possible that they're bad or were damaged during installation. You can check to see if the rear axle moves fore/aft when applying throttle by chocking the front wheels and checking for movement of the lower links at either end of the mounts when an assistant shifts the transmission into R or D and applies light throttle. You can also check to see if the tires move fore/aft when this happens. If either the left or right wheel moves fore/aft when throttle is applied, the bushings are bad. I recommend installing polyurethane bushings as the best countermeasure to deter the death wobble.
  15. By "rear sway" I assume that you mean that you feel a steering movement caused by the rear axle shifting under certain throttle positions while driving in straight line. If you mean that the rear end tends to sway or lean more than you desire during cornering maneuvers, it does seem like you covered the bases, except for replacing the springs, which I assume are stock. If you are still experiencing a steering motion after overhauling the rear suspension, I would suggest investigating the front suspension components, such as lower control arm bushings, tie rod ends, and ball joints. What shocks did you install?
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