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About Dbot

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    NPORA Newbie

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  • Your Pathfinder Info
    2002 Rescue adoption Spring 2019
  • Place of Residence
  • Mechanical Skill Level
    Wrench And Socket Set Mechanic
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  • What do you consider yourself?
    I Go When I Can
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    United States
  • Interests
    Finding new trails on Google Earth, wheeling said trails. mountain biking

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  1. I don’t recall if it’s necessary to replace the bolt but I’ll throw in my experience. I removed it and replaced it on my 01 about 6 months ago. Put about 5k miles on it since then and haven’t had any known issues with it so far. Hopefully somebody has the actual answer to your question
  2. Mine does that sometimes. Previous owner messed around with the automatic shifter and it's shift cables. Its slightly misaligned. When it happens to me, I gently press forward on the shifter and that seems to register that it's in park then it will start like normal. I think I've read there is also a switch in the center console for automatics that can fail which does what you're experiencing too.
  3. X2 on writeup This truck is looking killer by the way
  4. Could the panhard bar bushings be worn? also, if the trailing arm bushings weren’t installed correctly, I believe it’s possible to get the death sway again really fast
  5. When I tried out these wheels and tires on stock suspension, the tires would rub in the back if the suspension was compressed. At stock height, it looked as if just flexing would cause it to rub but it looks like with the lift, this must change the geometry to where I can tuck the rear tire at flex now.
  6. I feel ya on the coils. Sounds like you’re one of the lucky few that can get them before July. As for your vibration goes, I hope it’s an easy fix. Sounds like it could be that cv bearing that sits in your spindle. I had a trailblazer that did the rumble strip thing intermittently and it was a bearing that supported one of the cv axle ends. Is your cv axle snap ring still in place? Also, there is a thrust washer sandwiched between your cv axle and the backside of the spindle. It rides right next to that bearing I mentioned. Make sure you don’t lose that whenever you do any cv axle swapping. I almost lost mine once when I didn’t know it existed.
  7. The chrome could use some spit shine but I haven't gotten that far yet. I've been soaking them in degreaser since my earliest post on this build so the grit is kinda settling on the metal. As for the hi-lift jack, sadly I didn't get any pictures of it on the trail as I was in business mode trying to prevent further damage. I used it to winch me up muddy hill with the rocks my tires were caught on and one more time winched from my 10:00 to pivot the front of the rig to the left on mud. The trail went downhill on mud and hooked left but gravity and mud wanted me to go straight down toward trees so the hi-lift fixed corrected my course of action. I had 2x5' sections of tow chain, 1x10' section of tow chain, 1 tow strap with hooks and 2 recovery straps to get creative. The kicker is that this was a harbor freight jack and we had no idea that would hold up.
  8. 1 week update: So I finally got around to getting the alignment fixed. I gave the shop guy 4 camber bolts to work with and he only needed 2. The tires a little quieter now they aren't riding on the outside corner of the tread. Something I've noticed is that at highway speeds, I can hear a noise from what I think is the transfer case when the hubs are unlocked. The noise is similar to a worn out bearing or something. It's very faint and can't be heard unless passengers are quiet and the music is low/off. I can't hear it below 55 mph though. No 4x4 warning lights yet. So I took it wheeling on some moderate stuff nearby in Missouri. With the bigger tires and more ground clearance it took some of the excitement out of the easy stuff as it wasn't much different than driving a car down a dirt road. Struts didn't top out much and never dragged anything over rocks. I got a bit ambitious and tried to go up a steep, off camber hill with sloppy mud, peppered with embedded rocks and tight trees on either side. I almost made it to the top but ultimately got the tires hung on rocks and it crab walked about 6 inches sideways into a tree. I used a hi-lift jack as a winch to pull the rest of the way up. So the silver lining of that trip was, that I found the limits of the tires on mud... That's burned into my memory. I also found no issues with the suspension components and the cv axles held up on rocks just fine. Also, I carried an adult passenger, two kids and a bit of weight consisting of tools, spare cv axle, chains, coolers and drinks. The NRC9449s didn't even show they were doing double duty. I can now compare this ride to a stock xterra with the same exact tires and say this r50 is now superior as it sits higher therefore giving me about the same approach, departure and breakover angles. The r50 articulates better but the slightly longer wheelbase makes turns between tight trees a bit trickier when inches matter. The offset of the new wheels makes more vehicle to squeeze between trees but several times, the wide tires made an effective bumper which kept the tree an inch away from my fender flares as the tires stick out now. In a few days, I'm going to take it to an offroad park to get a better feel for it as there is more diverse difficulty and the density of the terrain is much better.
  9. Man that thing is clean. So I don’t think I’ve even seen a chrome roof rack on a Q. Is that aftermarket or some Limited edition ‘03 specific stuff? Also, where does that cabin temp sensor live? I’ve always wonder where exactly the climate control bases it’s decisions from
  10. Alas the post I've been striving to get to: Finished product below. So yesterday, I drove it around a bit and by the end of the night I noticed a slight pop/clunk in the rear end that is repeatable by 1) coasting 2)getting back on the throttle instantly. I crawled underneath to triple check my trailing arm bushing bolts and found nothing. Driveshaft felt just as secure as my 01 parked next to it. I noticed I had a worn out rear sway link so I replaced it to find that it didn't fix the noise. Perhaps the noise was always there but not noticed by myself as the old rubber bushing clunk was much louder and more noticeable. I guess I'll have to keep an ear out for it to see if it gets any worse. Also, driving yesterday, the Service Engine Soon light came on. Its a code for the evap system. I had disconnected a hose (reconnected when finished) above the drive strut and zip tied an extended diff breather hose to the fuel filler hose as well. I also blasted the undercarriage and wheel wells really well at a car wash too. So I supposed I either messed up a hose or got water on something that should stay dry. So about the Warn hubs, there was no need to replace the factory studs despite Warn providing replacement studs. Installation was very easy and straightforward. I also noticed on my other Warn hubs from the junkyard, that the gold color on the lockout knob is some sort of transparent amber coating. Soaking the cap in acetone for a night turns that coating to jelly that wipes off with your finger exposing a brushed steel look. I've seen some discussions around the internet about how many people dislike the gold color so I though I'd mention that. So some visual geometry notes I've made about this configuration: The back driver's side wheel protrudes a bit further than the passenger likely due to the panhard bar setup. Not a big deal but you can see it if you go looking for it. Also, the AC coils give some noticeable positive camber. Due to having 26 hours of dad duty this weekend and a limited number of shops that want to mess with non factory suspension, I'll have to wait until some weekday after work to get it aligned with the camber adjustment bolts. I left my running boards on initially because they serve as a decent reference point for height mesaurements but after seeing my 5'2" wife and four year old comically struggle to get in the new height I've decided to keep them on as "disposable rock sliders." If something happens to them on the trail... oh well. Below are some old vs new measurements: As far as ride quality goes, it is now starting to fell a little truck like. It's very startling when the struts slam. I think they top out really easy with the AC coils. I just know my wife is going to accuse me of messing up the front. The transfer case light hasn't come on yet and I've done about 20 miles of interstate driving so far so hopefully the automatic transfer case doesn't mind unlocked hubs. I can't wait to actually get it on the trail later this month. Lastly, you can't have an excessively long post without a special thanks. So special thanks to PathyDude17 for answering weeks of questions
  11. As of today, it's driveable. For the struts, I rented two pairs of spring compressors from O'reilly and Autozone. They were identical other than the color of their plastic case. Compressing the OEM coil seemed easy enough other than the jack screw rods invading the same physical space as the strut coil cap. Upon removing the coil, it was apparent the gas struts were shot. Compressible by hand with about 5 lbs or less force. It didn't really want to rebound. Later during the reassembly, the gas strut rod kept sagging down until I held it up and put the nut on top. It's weird because I haven't felt or seen any signs of bad front suspension behavior on the vehicle. I assumed the struts were good since my '01 R50 nose dives with brake pedal use whereas the '02 doesn't. Since it rides ok as far as my tastes go, and I really don't want to wait for KYBs to ship from Rock Auto, I just moved on to the reassembly stage. Compressing the AC coils by hand sucks. The coil is slightly tapered but when it's being compressed, the taper becomes exaggerated which changes the geometry of the jack screw rods on the compressors. They push into the strut foot and/or cap depending on how they are oriented. You have to use a set and compress it, then when you run out of room, Use the other pair of compressors on different coil sections to continuing compressing. Repeat this a few times until you have the spring squished enough with enough cap clearance. Then when you start decompressing, you have to play musical chairs with the compressors at different spots just to get them off the spring. Half of the time, there's not enough clearance to fit a socket on the rod so you have to use an open end wrench. So for the second strut, I paid a local shop to swap the coil for me. I set masking tape sections on the components so all they had to do was align the tape when they reassemble. New oem strut bearings were also installed during reassembly and the orange triangular gaskets were reused. Once I reinstalled the struts on the vehicle, I put the wheels back on the front and back before I tightened the 3 top strut bolts. With the vehicle being supported by it's tires and wheels, I used a ruler to measure rear end height, took the rear wheels off, then used a jack to lift the back up to the previously measured height using the diff as the jack point. At this point, I used my torque wrench and tightened all the trailing arm bolts, panhard bolt and sway bar link bracket bolts. The lift is definitely noticeable in the rear. Old suspension yeilded 14.8" at the bottom of the hitch vs 19.4" now. Back end of running board height: 11.8" vs 16.0". Somehow I failed to record the original front running board height but with the lift, it's now 15". I'm curious how much of that I'll lose when everything settles in. So I drove it around town a bit and the rear end feels amazing. I've become so accustomed to death sway that I now have to relearn how to drive without anticipating sway over road irregularities. I also don't hear the thump in the rear end where the bushings shift under torque load changes at a low speeds. The coils are great too since now I can cross intersections at full speed without kissing the bump stops when the whole family is in the car and I have no complaints about the Bilsteins. I don't feel any harshness or bumpiness from the AC coils yet. The front feels a bit funny, but I suspect that's because my camber is off until I get it aligned tomorrow. Once it's aligned, I'm going to throw on the steelies and my Warn hubs. Additionally, I extended the rear diff breather hose from 16" to 5'. It now routes up and over to the fuel door area.
  12. I'll throw in my personal anecdote on the intake manifold gaskets: I reused the upper intake manifold gasket on mine when I did my power valve screws last september. 222k and no CEL or engine performance changes
  13. AC coils arrive tomorrow so I pulled my struts out to help myself tomorrow. On one of these struts, that orange gasket that sits on top is cracked. I really don't want to wait for the dealership or another vendor to special order it, so I'm wondering what substitute I can use there. I was thinking about cutting my own out of some material. I'm thinking about rubber from a mud flap or inner tube. Fel-Pro makes sheets of gasket material but I don't know which one to choose https://www.autozone.com/sealants-glues-adhesives-and-tape/gasket-material/fel-pro-3075-gasket-material/67682_0_0?cmpid=PLA:US:EN:AD:NL:1000000:IEN:71700000043798118&msclkid=c4e81f142360158358b141c321e14e81&gclid=COny6NHE5OkCFRSyZQodZiYNGQ&gclsrc=ds I'm hoping you all had some suggestions. Thanks guys
  14. Day 3 Installed last trailing arm. All trailing arms bolts are hand tight. I supported the axle with the jack, and started unbolting the first shock. It compressed really easy and took several seconds to fully expand as it lay on the ground. So it turns out on this 02 model, the lower shock mount stud on the axle is about the diameter of the rubber bushing on the 5100 shock. I added a metal washer on the stud mount, sprayed some silicone lube on the stud and pushed the shock onto the stud, put more silicone lube and the original washer and nut back on. For the top mount, I wasn't happy with the extra slop from the 11mm-ish bolt sitting inside the 12.xxmm metal sleeve. So I went to the hardware store and bought some 1/2 diameter bolts that are only threaded at the end. This bolt is the perfect diameter to fit that provided metal sleeve. This did require expanding the shock mount tabs on the body. I took a 1/2" drill bit to the sheet metal to open the holes up a bit more. Some rust converter coating was sprayed on the exposed metal to help mitigate new rust. I stacked some washers to fill the gaps in the shock mount thickness and used a healthy dose of silicone lube here too. Swapping in the9447 coils was pretty uneventful other than working around having *just enough* brake line slack to work with. Getting the panhard bar back in was a doozy because lifting straight up on the diff wasn't lining up the bar hole with the body mount hole. I could get it almost lined up by using the jack to compress the passenger size but the newly installed 9447 coils seemed a bit too stick and actually did not let it flex out. I lifted the entire back end off the jack stands by jacking up the passenger drum brake and the bump stops still didn't touch anything. So i resorted to pulling laterally with ratchet straps on the axle but that was only good for almost pulling it off jack stands. Ultimately resorted to having an anchor vehicle attach to the receiver hitch to act as a brace as another vehicle on the other side acted as an anchor for the hi lift jack winch. This did the trick and got the bolt back in. I think I'm going to take a day off until Tuesday where I'll see about deconstructing the struts so their ready to rebuild when i get the AC coils on Wednesday.
  15. On day 2, I got the other 3 trailing arms out. The rubber bushings were cracked and split which obviously explains the death sway it's been having. The lower trailing arm bolts were much more stuck than the others. Those bolts came out with a sawzall. BamaQX402 was right about the locating tabs on the body end of the lower trailing arm. Filed those down with a belt sander, wiped with acetone and hit it with rust converter before greasing. Getting bolt holes to line up was a bit of a tedious endeavor but a jack and ratchet strap will eventually get it right. Tomorrow, I'll see about removing the old shocks and coils to put in the replacements. Hopefully the Bilstein 5100 bushings don't give me any trouble. If everything goes into place, I'll rest the weight of the vehicle on it's axle and tighten those trailing arm bolts. Then I'll wait until Wednesday to install the AC coils and Warn hubs.

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