Zorba, Male Belly Dancer


Henna Design Zorba's Jeep Henna Design
Speedometer corrector, dash cam, rear U-joints.


Jeep
"SpeedoDRD" to re-calibrate speedometer after tire size change.

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This is the business end - note programming pushbutton.

Jeep
Fished up as far as I could get it into the engine compartment. See text.

Jeep
Plugs in series with the speed pulse output on the transfer case.

There are two basic ways to correct a Jeep TJ's speedometer when changing tire sizes. The traditional way is to change a small plastic gear in the transfer case. Cheap and easy to do by all accounts. However, if tire sizes are changed again, the gear must be changed again. So I went with the second way: An electronic lump that recalibrates by connecting in series with the transfer case's speed pulse connector. This can be programmed for whatever offset is needed as often as is needed. A very tiny potted control board remotes to the engine compartment.

Installation was just as easy as the manufacturer, "12 o'Clock labs" claimed it would be. My only gripe is that it would have been nice if the cable had been about a foot longer, it barely reached a quasi-suitable location in the engine compartment. It would have been fantastic if the cable had been about 3 feet longer and the potted control module had been "soft wired" such that it could have been located under the dash in the cab, away from the very high underhood temperatures. But it seems to work fine, the speedometer continues to read correctly as I haven't yet programmed an offset - but now the Jeep is finally ready for some 31 inch tires. I also tested the cruise control which also uses the same signal - it works fine. Ready for tires!


Jeep
ThinkWare F70 Dash cam, because I'm tired of idiots.

Jeep
Simple, inexpensive, and no damn smartphone needed.

Jeep
Power cable routed through windshield escutcheon similar to the GPS cable.

Jeep
Definitely a Class-A Kludge, but a workable one. Sw. +12 to cigarette
lighter receptacle to splitter to power cords for both GPS and DashCam.
It all tucks up behind the dash to the left, a tye-wrap holds it in place.


F70 Dash cam checkout video.


Jeep
Rear driveshaft removed to replace U-joints.

Jeep
Taped up the slip yoke to protect it from moisture.

Jeep
Driveshaft out!

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Attempting to press out the first half U-joint.

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That little wrench wouldn't do it - used breaker bar. See text.

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Out comes the bastud!

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Here's the "Smoking Gun". Bearings got so hot they fused into a kind of metal sheath!

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Both old U-joints shown with new.

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Far left bearing carrier, completely dry and full of iron oxide.

Jeep
Note alignment marks. Were later replaced with small drilled dimples

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Touch up the primer already on the driveshaft.

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And hit it with flat black!

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Hung in my HVAC closet to dry/harden.

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Primed all 5 of the new U-joints.

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Painted 'em with some old green paint I've had laying about for years.

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Not easy to see here, but some hamfisted idiot bunged the inside edges of the bearing cap openings.

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They all had to be filed smooth - see text.

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U-joint half installed.

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Snap rings installed.

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Ready to connect other half of U-joint to other half of shaft.

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Look closely at the inside of the rearmost cap opening. Looks like it got REALLY hot from that bad bearing!

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Two halves together...

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... and the other half U-joint installed in the other end. Paint needs touch up, but ready to put back into the Jeep.

I suddenly started getting a vibration at between 20 and 25 MPH. After some careful analysis and stupid questions on the Jeep forum, I concluded that it had to be a rear driveshaft U-joint. I ordered a complete set to do both driveshafts as well as the front axle U-joints. It was obviously the rear shaft once I got it removed. As can be seen in the pix, I taped up the exposed slip joint to protect it while driving the Jeep on the front shaft only.

The guys on the forum strongly recommend using only a BFH and a appropriate sized impact socket to drive U-joints in and out of position. However, in this case, it wasn't possible - I had to use my ball joint press as the first half U-joint just wasn't budging. It didn't want to budge with the press and a regular wrench either - it took a 30 inch breaker bar and quite a bit of effort even then to get that "bastud" to move! There were a couple of loud bangs as it shifted out.

Long story short, as can be seen in the above pix, some hamfisted dolt drove a screw driver in to remove the bearing carriers during a previous U-joint replacement - NOT the way to do it. This must have been the one noted in the Carfax in Missoula, Mt. in 2017 when an unspecified number of "U-joint(s)" were replaced. In any event, the screw driver bunged up the inner side of the bearing cap openings in the ends of the drive shaft sections - all six of them! I think this was why it was so hard to get the U-joints out - I filed the spots smooth and had no further problems. It will be interesting to see if there's a similar situation with the front driveshaft when I get to it.

As can be seen above, the "smoking gun" was one of the bearing carriers was completely destroyed, the needle bearings appear to have slagged down into a thin sheath of metal, and there was just some iron oxide dust in the cap. Obviously, it had been that way for some time. I don't know if it failed because Mr. HamFist did something wrong, or it was "just one of those things"...

Putting the new U-joints in was "interesting". Long story short - which involved taking the first half U-joint back apart to double check while consulting with the guys on the Jeep forum - the snap rings which retain the bearing carriers/caps fit tight - which means the carriers/caps have to be driven in tight, which means the U-joint itself is now tight - or I should perhaps say "quasi-tight" - certainly not loose. There is a nylon thrust washer in the end of each cap that I think was designed to be tight and will wear down as needed after a few miles. I'll pull the driveshaft back off in a couple thousand miles to check on things, but I think it will be fine.

Now to re-install and test!

Read on for the next part!

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