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How to manually engage 4WD? And ball joint question


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34 replies to this topic

#1 Mr. Wob

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 09:59 AM

I never got around to replacing the severed wires on the solenoid, so I have been left with no 4WD. There may be some snow headed this way and I wanted to see if engaging 4WD without the use of the solenoid is possible. I heard installing a lever is possible, but what about without one? Is there a way to engage it without having to make a lever and moreover, if so, where I am I looking to engage it?

Thanks - as usual.

Also, now that I think of it - I did a ball joint the other day and now, I get a of back and forth in the steering wheel and kind of like a faint woodpecker noise under load. Not like a popping from a CV joint really though. I assume the steering wheel shimmy is from too much toe and needs an alignment, but the tapping noise I have no clue. I have a little tear in my CV boot, but I have been packing it with grease regularly until I fix it and the noise did not seem to start until after the ball joint was done Ideas?

#2 Skip

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 10:58 AM

Otay WOB, the rear drive is engaged by a vacuum motor of sorts.

It's a large diaphragm that gets vacuum applied to the side needed.

This vacuum control is/was the job of the solenoids.

You could easily( ?) rig a set of manual valves from say
an aquarium set up to control the diaphragm.

Open one/close the other for 4wd, reverse this for FWD.
(Real fancy setup would be a dash mounted three way valve.)

If you are interested
in learning how the solenoid control functions,

I have written a procedure for
understanding/repairing the system..


As for the steering oddity, sounds like you left something loose.

I'd jack her back up and double check all fasteners or we may be
hearing about you on the 6:00 news.

Hope this helps and here's gidonya mate.



#3 Mr. Wob

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 11:22 AM

I am not so much interested in making a whole setup. I just have a some severed wires right at the solenoid that need to be replaced for my 4WD to work again. In the mean time I wanted to know if there is a manual way to engage the 4WD.

As far as the steering is concerned, I have double checked all the things that were disconnected and everything is tight. I only undid the sway bar bolt, ball joint bolt and ball joint pinch bolt, so there was not much to check. :confused:

#4 Skip

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 11:36 AM

then simply
pull the vac diaphragm and put a rope on the cable
then another rope on the back side of the lever
pull the rope from the front of the car or pull the one out the rear..
or
splice your wiring and make sure vacuum is getting to the solenoids

try the front tires on the rear and see if the shimmy/clunk
changes.
DOJ's can also make this noise.
Torn CV boot, may I politely ask why you didn't change it when
the BJ was replaced?

#5 Gloyale

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 11:44 AM

What about just just bypassing the solenoid by connecting the Vacuum supply hose right to the diaphram. You wouldn't even have to run it right to the diaphram you could just do the whole deal right at the solenoid. With the engine running it should be easy to figure which line needs vacuum to be in 4WD. Just hook each one up and see which one engages the 4WD. might need a little double ended male vaccuum connector. That would be pretty simple to connect, disconnect, depending on snow conditions.

#6 Skip

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 11:52 AM

Gloyale is correct but..
as stated the vacuum diaphragm is a two sided affair.
He would have to put vacuum on the opposite side to disengage.

Your "plug and play" method would be close to a
"full setup" which he says he wants to avoid.

Tie a couple ropes on seems more up his alley??

#7 Numbchux

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 12:03 PM

I haven't wired my diff lock switch up yet, so when I want to lock my center diff, I just pop the hood, and bypass the vacuum switch. connecting one of the 2 lines that goes to the diaphragm manually. one of them is lock, and the other is unlock. although it took a little trial and error before I figured out which was which.

nothing to fabricate, actually much more simple than the ropes....

#8 Skip

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 12:21 PM

agreed but no trial and error with ropes

pull one or pull the other - how do you get any more simple?

#9 Numbchux

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 03:40 PM

agreed but no trial and error with ropes

pull one or pull the other - how do you get any more simple?


yea, that's pretty simple, but tieing on the ropes, and routing them isn't. how hard is it to connect one vacuum line, do a tight u-turn and see if it binds, and then mark the 2 lines with tape.

#10 Skip

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 04:01 PM

U right Numb but
if he has to
find the vac line with constant vac.

find a suitable vacuum line connector

dig the vac lines out of the mess of vac lines going
to the diaph.

do the plug and test - hope he has the right line
that goes to the diaph. and not some vent line.

do the plug into the other and re test (see above)

Why not just splice the wires or
leave the ropes run under the car tied to the bumper??

This is getting comical, he now has the solution in several forms,
I'll let him be the judge.

#11 Numbchux

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 04:38 PM

if the car came push-button, all the vacuum lines will be right there at the switch. just have to plug them in as necessary. I do it, it works great. I'll try to get a pic of it this evening while I'm working on the brakes....

#12 Skip

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 04:48 PM

sorry Numb no switch just two solenoids side by side.
Should make it a piece of cake to add the three way valve
or the line connect as you do.

But the orig. post asks
"I heard installing a lever is possible, but what about without one?
I wanted to know if there is a manual way to engage the 4WD."

Can't get more manual than ropes,lol.

Posted Image

#13 Prospeeder

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 05:30 PM

why not just FIX it??? its not hard to spice wires if thats all it is, it would probably be easier and take less time

#14 Numbchux

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 06:07 PM

yep, he said manually, so he didn't have to fix the severed wires. your way would work perfectly, but this way is VERY easy, and still solves the problem.

Here's what I'm talking about, here's the system hooked up normally:
Posted Image

and here it is with the switch (solenoids, whetever) bypassed. this happens to be unlocked for me, but I got the part from a junkyard and very easily could have them backwards...
Posted Image

tell me that's harder than crawling under the car and to tie a knot to the lever, stringing it up into the cabin, and then doing it again to the other side.

it's not a bad idea....it's just not the best ;)

#15 Mr. Wob

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 08:03 PM

Wow - lots of replies!

The vacuum line method seems to be more what I had in mind. And to answer the question about the wires - the wires are severed right at the silicone so I cant just splice. I really need to get a whole new unit and although someone on here had one, I have not had the time to worry about shipping and installing.

So I just need a "___" size vacuum line connector - very good to know.

As far as the front is concerned, I havent swapped wheels. I live in Manhattan, so its difficult to get space to work. I will try that next - thanks and if there are more ideas I would love to hear them as well.

Thanks again.

#16 Numbchux

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Posted 16 January 2007 - 02:56 AM

So I just need a "___" size vacuum line connector - very good to know.


nope, it's already there. you just unplug from one line, and then plug it into another.

#17 nvexplorer

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Posted 16 January 2007 - 03:03 AM

I always thought that the push button solenoids worked like this:

When 4wd not engaged vacuum is supplied to one solenoid and when 4wd is engaged it only has vacuum to the other solenoid.

If this is the case then one line will always have vacuum so with the car running he should be able to unplug the lines and note which one has vacuum and where it came from and plug it into the other one.

Sound about right?

#18 mikeshoup

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Posted 16 January 2007 - 08:24 AM

If this is the case then one line will always have vacuum so with the car running he should be able to unplug the lines and note which one has vacuum and where it came from and plug it into the other one.

Ding! That's how I'd do it.

#19 Mr. Wob

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Posted 18 January 2007 - 08:39 PM

so an update - I tried bypassing the solenoid. I tried both vacuum lines that connect and I heard nothing and the light didnt go on. I tried driving with one connected and no engagement either. The line in has vacuum too. Sound like the 4WD is DOA? Or am I doing something wrong? Drive longer, wait longer etc?

Gracias.

#20 Numbchux

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Posted 18 January 2007 - 09:59 PM

so an update - I tried bypassing the solenoid. I tried both vacuum lines that connect and I heard nothing and the light didnt go on. I tried driving with one connected and no engagement either. The line in has vacuum too. Sound like the 4WD is DOA? Or am I doing something wrong? Drive longer, wait longer etc?

Gracias.


hmmm...did you try doing a U-turn to be sure it isn't working?

maybe put the front end on ramps, and see if the arm on the side of the tranny moves...

#21 MAYFLY

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Posted 18 January 2007 - 10:58 PM

About the woodpecker noise... Do you have a manual tranny? The clutch may be chattering under load.

#22 Mr. Wob

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Posted 19 January 2007 - 01:29 PM

hmmm...did you try doing a U-turn to be sure it isn't working?

maybe put the front end on ramps, and see if the arm on the side of the tranny moves...



I did a U-Turn, but it was wet out. I still didn't feel any binding really though. I'll play around with it this weekend maybe, see if the the arm moves. Can I manually engage the arm if I slide underneath? What side of the tranny is it on? Thats Numb, you have been a good guide so far.

About the woodpecker noise... Do you have a manual tranny? The clutch may be chattering under load.


It sounds more like its coming from the right front rather then the tranny area. I do have a manual though.

#23 Numbchux

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Posted 19 January 2007 - 03:41 PM

the lever should be on the passenger side (it is for the center lock on my RX trans). but you can follow the cable from the vacuum diaphragm to it. that's what skip was talking about tieing the ropes to.

while it's up in the air, try moving the suspected wheel around, if it moves side to side at all, your ball joint is very shot, if it turns, your tie rod end is shot. it does sound like it could be one of those...

#24 grossgary

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Posted 19 January 2007 - 05:34 PM

the lever is on the passengers side, it won't just shift by grabbing it and pulling it. it's part of a stationary assembly, something must give for it to be able to move (unless something is broken or already apart). you'll have to unbolt the bracket (annoying to get to the bolts, but doesn't take long) to get it to move.

#25 Mr. Wob

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Posted 19 January 2007 - 09:53 PM

the lever should be on the passenger side (it is for the center lock on my RX trans). but you can follow the cable from the vacuum diaphragm to it. that's what skip was talking about tieing the ropes to.

while it's up in the air, try moving the suspected wheel around, if it moves side to side at all, your ball joint is very shot, if it turns, your tie rod end is shot. it does sound like it could be one of those...



I just did a ball joint and the tie rod boot is torn, but has no play and has been well greased since the tear. I'll replace that soon enough too, but I wanted to see if it was another problem first.




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