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wideopencowbell

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  • Your Pathfinder Info
    88 SEV6 5MT
  • Place of Residence
    PNW
  • Mechanical Skill Level
    Skilled/Experienced Mechanic
  • Your Age
    36-40
  • What do you consider yourself?
    Rarely Go Off-Road
  • Model
    SE
  • Year
    1988

Profile Information

  • Location
    Washington
  • Country
    United States

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  1. Hi All, Wondering if anyone can share experiences they've had with replacement starter motor assemblies or recommendations. Typically I don't have this issue with the parts I choose (especially on a Nissan), but I've just installed two bad starters from different sources on my 88 Pathfinder (180k miles in great shape). This is not a diagnosis help request, but I will explain the conditions. I checked everything upstream - starter and inhibitor relays function/voltage, battery condition, voltage drop to main power post, clutch switch. The important thing is I verified I'm getting 11.9-12.0V at the solenoid signal connector and it's holding just fine in a 10-15 second test. I was having very infrequent intermittent no crank issues, like once every few months after the vehicle was warmed up and had been running for awhile, I'd pull into a drive-through, shut the engine off, then a few minutes later go to crank and get nothing but a click and the dreadful feeling that I was about to have to push my dead vehicle from the drive-though. After another key cycle or two it would catch and fire up, just fine. This had become more frequent (like every couple weeks), so I went ahead and ordered a new new WAI Global starter from Rock Auto. Had a heart by it, and *new* so I figured what could go wrong? Yesterday I got the same no-start condition and spook, and my new part had been delivered so I figured it was time to get into it. Replaced the starter, and it did nothing. Relays clicked but nothing else. Also the connector was so tight I had to tap the edge with a hammer and drift to get it fully seated. Don't ask about getting it back off without destroying the vehicle side... I was going to toss the old starter back in but the solenoid wire from the connector just fell apart, and inside I saw the lead was broken and had only a tiny soldered resistor connecting the wire path. Interesting, I should have taken a picture but I was more concerned about getting a replacement locally with my now-dead Pathfinder blocking the driveway at 4PM on a Saturday. I found a an Action Auto replacement in-stock a 45 minute drive away and tossed the old part in a box for core return and ran to get the new rebuilt starter they had. A few hours later, Action Auto Parts starter was installed and worked perfectly. Sounded a little quieter than the old unit. One thing I noticed was that the AAP starter just had normal wire leads instead of the one funky lead with a resistor. I didn't care much for the dinky resistor being the entire signal path on something so critical, so figured "meh." I tested the starter half a dozen or more times, waited a while, got cleaned up to go grab some food and again the Pathfinder started just as it should. Went out to get a late bite, had my meal, returned to the Pathfinder and... no cranks. Clicks, no cranks. Kept trying, jumped relay connections with paper clips (of course I had just removed any useful tools). This time I was truly stranded and got to treat myself to a midnight tow. This morning I tried the key just to see, and it gave about two seconds of effort before giving up. As I said earlier I have since checked everything upstream and deemed the replacement starter is definitely the culprit - 2 in a row! And I'm guessing that resistor in the solenoid circuit is critical to the system. So I do not wish to repeat this dance. I also need to drive to the Oregon coast next weekend from Washington, and really don't want to be dead hundreds of miles from home. Also the Pathfinder is now blocking my running car in the garage, I'm down to a Suzuki Burgman for transportation until I get a good starter. I'm looking at these options: New new Delco unit from Rock Auto: ~$100, Rebuilt Bosch unit from Rock Auto on wholesaler closeout: ~$65, Rebuilt Hitachi unit from Autoplicity: ~$150... all of which are less than last night's tow. If anyone has input on brands and experiences they've had, please chime in! Thanks
  2. Ahh thanks much for the input! Yeah I haven't been able to verify myself but some precursory *research* (eg. looking at specs on Rock Auto which may or may not be accurate) indicated that the WD22 boxes are a different input spline count, so I let that idea go. As it turns out, I think the Problem Solver idler I installed with everything really was amplifying my issues the first couple days, it worked in a bit and now everything feels actually quite good. I wouldn't call it tight by any means, but at least I'm not fighting to keep it in a lane at highway speeds. I may still have a look at swapping to a later large-shaft WD21 box since I have the early one. Redhead is localish to me so I can at least drop it off directly to have them go through.
  3. I think I found my smoking gun. Or smoking gear in this case... Wanting to make sure that I hadn't cranked in my box adjuster to the point of binding, I checked things out again this evening. Because I had adjusted the box with the center link removed so I could feel the backlash through the pitman, I felt like I had it set about as well as it was going to be set... and I still think it was OK. What I found is that with the front end off the ground and the wheels turned all the way to one direction, play in the steering gear goes from ~30 seconds on center between the input shaft and the pitman, to maybe around ~2 minutes when it's cranked to one end or the other. So I have a bunch of slop off center, and it's about ideal on center. Looks like I may be exploring the Redhead option... but I need to rescue a D22 box from the yard and acquire the appropriate pitman first. Also, I still think my new idler is the cause of the extra stiffness throughout the system. I was planning to pop the center link off the pitman to check the gear adjustment, but being able to feel what was going on without breaking the taper I'm just going to make it a wait-and-see if it wears in a bit for now. Maybe I'll get luck and find a manual box soon...
  4. Thanks for this... I was actually searching to find out if slop in the column could be a factor. I have too much stiffness in the steering on center now (see above), but it’s still incredibly vague between my hands and the tires. My box had a little slop but not a lot, so I was wondering about the shaft. Also I definitely have too much motion in the ocean coming from the back end which isn’t helping. Going to do Poly bushings ASAP and I’m waiting on a panhard bracket drop from 4x4parts. I agree though it seems like the whole thing needs spherical ball ends. Sorry to hear about your daughter’s wreck!
  5. I didn’t realize Redhead had Nissan box options. I’ve got one in my 67 Chevy truck and it’s almost too quick, but I like it. I wouldn’t be opposed to spending the money if that’s the solution, because if I can’t get the wander out then this WD21 love affair is going to be really short. This morning on the way to work at 4AM I was actually concerned I may get pulled over for suspected DUI one of these days if I can’t sort out the lane wander... I adjusted the play down to a minimum at the box when I had the CL off, but when I put everything back together with a Moog Problem Solver Idler (temp until I can find a D21 manual box), the steering was so stiff it barely moves off center even with the wheels off the ground. I was afraid I messed up at the box so I took a quarter turn back out but realized it’s probably the ultra stiff idler. So I’ve got some sorting to do between those variables.
  6. I have not bothered to call yet. In every picture I see of the RC arms installed they seem to have the same issue, so I figured they were all that way.
  7. Has the issue with the RC/SL UCA inner mount alignment indeed been addressed? I just installed a set last month that are way off: visibly skewed from one sleeve to the other, and also too wide... lots of preload going on installation caused by drawing the bushings together with the spindle nuts. The kit was assembled in April of this year according to the packaging inspection (which missed that they included one wrong bushing). I was willing to accept the poor quality arms for awhile because nothing else was readily available, but my alignment has way too much positive camber. I’m planning to fab my own set at some point because it seems like none of the buyable options are viable.
  8. Thanks for the input. Since I’m running out of time I decided to go ahead and install everything tonight (yes D21 stuff). I don’t like the center link situation but I couldn’t wait another week for another round of parts to find out if I can get something better. Agree that the CL should be welded before any serious 4x4 stuff, however I’m not going to be doing much of that for awhile. Right now I’m just trying to tighten things up and attempt to get the wandering out of the steering and suspension as it’s more of a handful on the highway than it has a right to be (only running 265/75r16 tires).
  9. Hello Folks, This is my first time posting as I recently bought my first WD21 and haven't had time to post an Intro or anything yet. I have an '88 WD21 acquired about a month ago, I've put a 2.5" lift on using Rough Country UCAs & shocks (for now), Swayaway bars and JGC springs. I got all my parts together to do a 2WD steering setup, and the Moog center link has a multi-piece design with a strangely-fitted hollow rod crimped to two solid outer portions. To me, this looks like a very bad design and a terrible way to save a few dollars on production costs. So I ordered an AC Delco CL (same part, different box) from another source, wanting to try my luck and see if I could get an older stock version that is monolithic all the way through. Negative - the Delco part is the same deal. Both parts are 555 Japan parts, by the way. Does anyone have any experience with this style of center links? They just look like two added failure modes to me. I'm pretty frustrated because right now the Pathfinder is held up until I put a new center link in, and I'm running out of time before bad weather and already ran out of time for the start of a new school quarter. I have a new 4WD CL that I was going to return (ordered before I learned about the 2WD setup), but I'm wondering if I should scrap the 2WD swap and just install the 4WD stuff instead to get the Pathfinder back on the road. If anyone who has experience with this swap or this style of center link has any strong feelings about the matter, please chime in! I can try ordering a different cheaper brand of center link with hopes of it being solid/monolithic. I really like the 555/Moog stuff but this is a major let-down.
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