Weekend 4WD Problems

Weekend 4WD Problems

Mannster

Jeeper
Posts
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Location
Fredericksburg, VA
Vehicle(s)
1979 CJ7 Renegade Stock,
2000 XJ Cherokee Stock
Interesting problem happened this weekend that I'm hoping I can get some feed back on.

Was off road over the weekend and in 4wd but once off the mountain, I tried to get back into 2hi. Problem was, the hubs wouldn't unlock. I moved forward and backward but nothing. I had to follow my wife up the road so went up about 10 miles to where she stopped and tried again. No luck but then I noticed one of the wheels was locking up. After fooling with it for a while, it dawned on me to jack up one wheel at a time and started with the front drivers side and as soon as it got off the ground, it spun about a eighth of a turn. I let it down and the hubs were able to unlock. It went into 2hi fine and then drove it on home.

Question is, what's going on here (it's been difficult sometimes to get it out of 4wd preceding this but not this hard)? What should I be looking at to fix this assuming I have a larger problem here?
 
I would first suspect worn parts, like the locking hubs. Disassemble, clean and grease them or replace. You should have been able to drive on the asphalt with the transfer case in 2 hi and leave the hubs locked without any problems. Good call on jacking a wheel up, sometimes you just have to think about how to fix stuff and it takes a while.
 
The way I'm reading this is you couldn't get it out of 4wd or unlock your hubs. If this is the case than the tc was probally just "bound up". As you said usually backing up some will let you get it out of 4wd, but sometimes it's still hard.
I doubt you have any problems other than it was just bound up more than usual, and driving on the black top didn't help it any.
The best thing I ever did was go to a twin stick, it shifts so much better now.
 
Did you get the transfer case into neutral before disengaging the hubs? I would agree with the binding. If I have trouble, I put some pressure on the transfer case shifter to neutral while rolling and put the trans in neutral. Tapping the brakes while coasting helps. This normally gets it every time. I would also inspect the hubs and lube them up.
 
Albatros, no, I had to get the hubs unlocked before it would shift out of 4wd. That has been the case since I got it, the TC is locked in 4wd until I unlock the hubs. I just assumed that was the norm.
 
You also may want to try draining and re-filling the gear oil in the t case. I always had a tough time getting back into 2h after being offroad until I changed fluid in the t case. I'm not sure if the PO had the wrong gear oil in it or what, but it's much easier to shift now that it has the recommended 75-90 GL4 in it.The discovery was a welcome by product of a fluid change.
 
The best thing I ever did was go to a twin stick, it shifts so much better now.

AMEN on that! The single shifters for the Dana 20 and Dana 300 suck!

Twin sticks works SOOOO much better! Plus, if you feel like doing a little extra work, you can make it possible to shift into front wheel drive only. This would be handy for getting it home in situations where your rear axle is having issues, but will still roll.
 
I still have my twin stick setup for sale if interested :D
 
I still have my twin stick setup for sale if interested :D
One small problem. The OP has a 79 CJ, so he'll have a Dana 20 if it's the original transfer case. You have a 300 right?
 
I do have a Dana 300 in my 86 but my 74 CJ5 had a Dana 20 which I bought a better one from Novak to replace the junky home made one the PO installed but never got around to installing it.
 
I do have a Dana 300 in my 86 but my 74 CJ5 had a Dana 20 which I bought a better one from Novak to replace the junky home made one the PO installed but never got around to installing it.
Well then that works out perfect. Hook the brotha up! :chug:
 
sounds like to me you have more than one issue going on.

Your TC isnt coming out of 4wd like it should....
AND your hubs arent unlocking. Even if the TC hasnt come out of 4wd and the front end is still turning, you should be able to unlock the hubs, especially if you tried backing up. The hubs should have been able to unlock from the axle shafts.
 
:agree: i've hade mine not want to come out of 4lo and have unlocked the hubs to get it free up.
 
sounds like to me you have more than one issue going on.

Your TC isnt coming out of 4wd like it should....
AND your hubs arent unlocking. Even if the TC hasnt come out of 4wd and the front end is still turning, you should be able to unlock the hubs, especially if you tried backing up. The hubs should have been able to unlock from the axle shafts.

Yes, that is the case. It's always been that way - never have been able to shift out of 4wd until hubs are unlocked. Just thot that was the way it was supposed to be.
 
Yes, that is the case. It's always been that way - never have been able to shift out of 4wd until hubs are unlocked. Just thot that was the way it was supposed to be.
It's common for it to be difficult to shift out of 4wd with the hubs locked. It usually takes backing up and pulling forward a few times while applying pressure to the shifter. What's not normal is the hubs not releasing when you switched to unlocked. I'd take them apart, clean and grease them.
 
Has anyone thought about matching gears in front and rear in the diffs?
 

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