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siggy

not a novice, but i've got my work cut out for me

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hello NPORA!

 

A few months ago I picked up a pretty beat and neglected pathfinder for a song. It was straight piped, had mismatched tires, and according to the previous owner 'definitely needed some suspension work.' Well, he was right, and I'm in the thick of a front end overhaul.

 

The details:

'94 SE, dark green

4x4, 5 speed

254,000 miles (frozen odometer)

 

This is my first 4x4, and it has been something I have been wanting for quite a while, ever since I got my first 2wd pickup real stuck a good few times (oh to be young and foolish again). First thing I did was fix the exhaust, minus the one broken exhaust stud. replaced it with OEM style manifolds and a cheapo amazon muffler. Once I could hear my own thoughts in the truck, I took on the timing belt which was not easy. I'm used to wrenching on domestic vehicles - the truck i cut my shadetree mechanic skills on was a 2nd gen explorer and it doesn't get any simpler than that. I had my work cut out for me but despite some mishaps, she is still in time and purrs with a new water pump, cam and crank seals, v-belts, and 105k mile timing belt, not that I can tell how many miles I've put on it since the replacement. Now, I am undertaking a full front end refresh - UCA bushings, upper and lower ball joints, bearing clean and repack, all new wheel seals, new pads and rotors, new inner and outer TRE, new CV axles. Did the strut rod bushings a couple weeks ago, put a steering stabilizer on last week. I've got the bug with this truck. First thing is to get it back to stock 'new' condition, then on to mods. 1.5" rear lift coils and a mild t-bar crank up front for starters. Want to get a bit more clearance and appearance without stressing those super short CV axles too much.

 

I did have the chance to off-road the rig a bit before I tore the front end down (those strut rod bushings were critical) and she rips on 31" mud tires. I can't wait to get back out there. I've been hitting the search bar hard on this site during all of these repairs (downloaded the FSM too, of course) and if I find an issue I can't find a solution for on this site, I'll be putting a post out there. For now, cheers, y'all.

 

siggy

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Thanks! Front end work is going well. Had to get creative to press in the UCA bushings without access to a hydraulic press or ball joint tool, but a couple of clamps and some elbow grease did the trick! Anyone else had to resort to...creative measures to get those suckers in? On a sidenote, I picked up the bushings from autozone (duralast brand of course because above all things I am cheap!) and the turned out to be OEM, made in Japan. Score!

 

As i get things buttoned up, I'm really not looking forward to alignment...I'll be digging into the forum posts for this one.

 

Final aside: one of my lower ball joints came with metal circle spring clips to keep the boots seated, the other did not. Same exact part. Gonna run with it until I can't run it anymore - I guess I'll just shoot it full of fresh grease after every puddle??

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Dawn dish soap to lube those bushings, helps them slide in then dries out ;)

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