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AR97Pathfinder's Build


AR97Pathfinder
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Hey guys, many you know I have asked several questions about repairs over the past few months and you all have provided a great amount of help. So wanna say thanks to you all!  This is an amazing community of people on here. As R50JR has recommended I have started this build thread to keep everything concise and in one place. I know I've created several different threads with different questions and may have been confusing so sorry about that. 

 

Many of those repairs havent been done as yet as the weather up here in the Northeast hasn't been cooperating. I did get the chance to do some things here and there. 

Installed a double din Pioneer touchscreen system, kicker tweeters, back up camera, and did a pressurized fuel injection cleaning. 

 

My truck has just over 180k and its still going strong. Very minimal light spot rust on the undercarriage and on the driver side of the vehicle by the rear wheel well at the bottom near the side step there is some rust there also. Think i'll bring it to a body shop to repair that as I don't want it to get worse. As for rust, thats about all, havent found any on the rest of the vehicle or in any other wheel wells. Will be wiring brushing off any rust underneath and undercoating this summer. 

In the next week or two I’ll be pulling my transfer case at the shop to replace all seals as well as new u-joints for both driveshafts and a new transmission mount. I have all parts.
          -For the seals I’m using original Nissan’s (front driveshaft seal, rear driveshaft seal, front transfer case seal, shift seal, rear tranmsision seal)
          -U-joints will be Dana Spicer
          -Transmission mount Beck and Arnley

This coming spring I’m doing some suspension work and will be putting on a new Rack and Pinion. If by then the OME coils are still not available I’ll be going with the Ironman coils for the front and rear. I know most have the OME and I've watched PathyDude17's video and he knows someone with the Ironman coils. So I guess I'll be one to update on the ride quality and performance once I get them on. 
            NISS035B - rear 1.5” lift coils
            NISS034B - front 1.5” lift coils
            KYB strut mounts, boot and bellow, bearing

            Nissan spring Seat rubbers (54034-0W000 & 55034-0W003)

            KYB Exel-G struts 

            KYB Gas-A-Just shocks 

            A camber bolt for each strut

            Missing Link that I'll try to make on my own 

Already have new sway bar bushings and links front and back. New ball joints have been installed.

        

Any reccomendations for a good Rack and Pinion? 

            I was thinking about a AcDelco rack. (ACDELCO 36R0788)

 

Now two years ago I had to replace the control arms in the front and the rear 4 trailing arms. I was going on a long trip and the swaying at highway speeds was not pleasant so I just did the arms at the time. What I didn't do correctly at was load the vehicle before torquing down the bolts. I torqued them down with the suspension still hanging. Everything still looks fine bushing wise and theres no swaying. 

Should I replace back the arms or loosen bolts and torque down loaded?

At the time I used Mevotech control arms in the front. Havent had problems but I'm not sure how good of a brand this is? What do you guys reccomened for the front control arms as replacements? 

 

Once all those repairs are completed I'll be getting some new shoes for the Pathy. With a 1.5" lift and stock rims (15's) what are the best reccomendations for All Terrain tires? A bigger size possible?

 

Thanks to everyone! 

 

 

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One issue I am encountering is during warm restarts. If the vehicle is driven and then shut off for anywhere between 20 minutes to 1.5hr and it is restarted the engine stumbles roughly for a few seconds. It would clear itself out and run perfectly fine, even when driving after. On cold starts it fires up normally and if left for a couple hours it starts normally also. One time it stumbled bad and Rpms surged up and down then it died.

I have no codes besides an evap p1441 that’s been there a while before. Comes and goes every so often. I had evap system smoke tested, changed cap, evap canister and vent valve, cut valve and bypass valve solenoid. So I don’t bother with that code anymore as it doesn’t effect engine performance.

The vehicle has a new distributor, ECT sensor, maf sensor, plugs, wires, pressurized fuel injection cleaning. I did a fuel pressure test and lost about 11 psi in 25 minutes. Was told that is normal.

I am leaning towards a leaky injector or bad FPR. Or IACV? Not sure

Anyone can offer and idea of what they think? Some other pathy has to have experienced this before.

I don’t know what else it could possibly be.


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So I had the truck in the shop this weekend. Dropped the transfer case and replaced all seals. Leak is gone.

I replaced the trans mount as well.

But now I have another problem. I had the shop replace all 4 ujoints with spicers. The mechanic doing the job finished the small driveshafts joints and took a break. Another mechanic took it upon himself to pick up the big driveshaft and finish up the job. But doesn’t look like he knew what he was doing. He removed the old ujoint and began the process of putting the new one in and dropped the cap, but didn’t check the needle bearings before trying to install it. The cap basically got stuck halfway in cause some needle bearings fell.

He was going at the yoke ears with a hammer to try and force it in. But by the time I saw and stopped him, it was too late. It got bent. They managed to get the cap out, straighten the yoke and get a new ujoint installed.

But I am experiencing a thumping sensation when the vehicle settles after a hard stop. Or pulling off fast. No vibrations while driving local or highway speeds. I assume this must be from the driveshaft, especially after seeing them wack it so much.

Since it was obviously their error, they have decided to replace the main driveshaft at their expense.

Should I be fine with having them pull a driveshaft from a pathfinder at the junkyard and have new ujoints installed properly? Or I see they have a Doorman driveshaft online new.


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  • 4 weeks later...

Pulled the upper and lower intakes this evening to replace the knock sensor, fuel injectors, IACV, FPR, the intake gaskets, and some coolant hoses.

Should finish tomorrow if everything goes well.

I pulled the drain plug on the radiator before starting and got out almost all coolant. I know there is some left in block but lower than the lower intake.

When I pulled the lower intake though a very small amount of coolant dripped under the vehicle and some onto the block. I didn’t see any in the cylinders though. Should I be worried about this? If a small amount went in? All the valves were closed from what I saw.
c46727af2f07582ffbe439007f67c049.jpg


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Should be fine. If you're worried that coolant went down an intake runner, spin it over with the plugs out and it should eject anything it ingested. Good call taking the hood off, I did the same when I had my manifold off. One less thing to bang your head on.

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Should be fine. If you're worried that coolant went down an intake runner, spin it over with the plugs out and it should eject anything it ingested. Good call taking the hood off, I did the same when I had my manifold off. One less thing to bang your head on.

Should that be done now when everything is open or put it back together first?


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If you're going to do it, I'd do it while the intake is off, just because the plugs are easier to get to. Take the towels out of the runners first, of course.

So I ran into some trouble. I finished changing all parts and was assembling. On the lower intake I was installing the nuts and bolts. The manual said tighten to 4 ft-lb then 16ft-lb. The screw on the farthest back right pulled the threads on the block. I was still on the 4ft-lb setting but the torque ratchet didn’t click.

I’m not sure if the ratchet probably was not working. So I took the bolts and nuts back off and the one that pulled the threads I used a longer bolt on it. There was thread below still. Seemed like a lot as I was able to get it down normally.

A longtime Nissan tech I know told me I should have tighten them by hand not torque wrench. So by feel I have tightened everything back down really good.

Hopefully there’s no problems.


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Ah, that sucks. The click can be easy to miss when the torque wrench is set towards the low end of the scale, and on a torque spec that low you may not realize "it shouldn't be this hard" until you're well past spec. My 1/2" torque wrench isn't even marked for anything below ten. It's also possible the threads were already damaged by corrosion, or by the last guy going too far. Good thinking with the longer bolt!

 

I didn't have the right torque wrench when I did mine, so I went to German spec (gutentite). No issues.

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10 minutes ago, Slartibartfast said:

Ah, that sucks. The click can be easy to miss when the torque wrench is set towards the low end of the scale, and on a torque spec that low you may not realize "it shouldn't be this hard" until you're well past spec. My 1/2" torque wrench isn't even marked for anything below ten. It's also possible the threads were already damaged by corrosion, or by the last guy going too far. Good thinking with the longer bolt!

 

I didn't have the right torque wrench when I did mine, so I went to German spec (gutentite). No issues.

Yeah, I’ll see how it goes tomorrow when I finish up and get it started. Will check for any coolant leaks. 
 

I should be fine with that one bolt once it caught a lot of threads lower right? 

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If it's got a good amount of thread engagement, it held torque, and it's not bottomed out, I'd expect it to do just fine. Good luck with startup! Double check your heater hose connections, the clamps are hard to see and easy to forget to do up.

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16 hours ago, Slartibartfast said:

If it's got a good amount of thread engagement, it held torque, and it's not bottomed out, I'd expect it to do just fine. Good luck with startup! Double check your heater hose connections, the clamps are hard to see and easy to forget to do up.

Got everything back together. Running perfect! No issues whatsoever. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

This weekend I installed a new rack and pinion.

I also installed new coil springs on the front and rear. Along with new kyb shocks on the rear and strut on the front. I also got new kyb strut mounts, bellow, bump stop, and bearing. My strut didn’t need the spacer supplied.

Everything went good with the installation. Except on the left wheel it looks like the bearing might be binding a little. You can feel and hear a slight thudding when trying to turn the wheel. And when I have someone do it and look at the strut I can see the wheel and strut assembly turning a bit before the top hat starts to turn. The bearing was a bit tight before I installed it and I did question it in my mind but thought because it was new.

Will this break in over time or should I take it out?

I did a string alignment after for now as I will be doing a machine alignment when my new tires are installed in the coming weeks. It came out pretty great to be honest. Drives straight.


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  • 4 weeks later...
On 4/5/2021 at 12:53 PM, AR97Pathfinder said:

This weekend I installed a new rack and pinion.

 

How complex was it? Mine is starting to leak a bit, shop wants $1850 so that's not happening. I'm either going to do it myself with help of a mechanic friend or if it is considered complex or risky I'll look around for another shop.

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How complex was it? Mine is starting to leak a bit, shop wants $1850 so that's not happening. I'm either going to do it myself with help of a mechanic friend or if it is considered complex or risky I'll look around for another shop.

It wasn’t bad honestly. I tied down the steering wheel first with it centered. I removed the splash guard underneath and then the sway bar brackets, allowing it to drop down. Then I loosened the banjo bolts on the two lines and all the fluid will leak out now so have a pan. There is a single bolt on steering shaft that has to be removed. Then I unbolted the rack and pulled it down and out.

Make sure you check back if the new rack is centered. I got a ACDelco and they had said in the instructions it’s centered at factory but it wasn’t. You can use a vise grip pliers and a cloth on the shaft and turn the shaft from lock to lock to count the total turns. And then turn back until it’s half that amount and you’re centered.

Installing is simply the reverse and then fill it up with fluid once everything is bolted up. Turn the steering wheel lock to lock several times with engine off and wheels still up in air. Then turn the engine on and turn lock to lock again several times. All the air should be out the system now.

Make sure to use new copper washers on the banjo connections. And when installing tie rod ends count the threads on the old rack and set the new one to the same so you’re alignment is close enough until you align at the shop.

Took me about 3 hours. I definitely wouldn’t pay that much to do it.


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I got a ACDelco
 
Was it the 36R0788 like you have listed above? Where did you get it?

Yeah that’s the one I installed. Everything has been great so far. And I ordered from summit racing and it took about a month to get to me as they ordered from the manufacture. Didn’t have in stock.

Rockauto has it as well. It says 2 day delay but I’m not sure if it would be longer.


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  • 11 months later...
On 4/5/2021 at 2:53 PM, AR97Pathfinder said:



I also installed new coil springs on the front and rear. Along with new kyb shocks on the rear and strut on the front. I also got new kyb strut mounts, bellow, bump stop, and bearing. My strut didn’t need the spacer supplied.
 

Which coil springs did you end up using? Ironman? Can you provide pics of your Pathy so I can see how it sits with the new suspension?

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