Whether you are upgrading your Jeep’s suspension, swapping axles, changing trannies or modifying your transfer case, one component of your Jeep almost always demands attention—the driveshaft. It’s the critical link in your drive line, and a sensitive one at that. A little off here, a little off there, and if you’re not careful, you could find yourself in big trouble somewhere you can least afford it. This is why you should put your trust in the biggest name in drive shafts, Tom Woods. Just go to 4XShaft.com find out more, that’s 4XShaft.com
This Week In Jeep:
More Spy Shots
Following in the spirit of last week’s news story of spy photos which opened our eyes to the possibility of an even more powerful Grand Cherokee Trackhawk… this week we have some new photos that have the rumor mills all-a-buzz. Autoblog has a pretty skilled crew of photographers at their disposal. And this week, they got numerous shots of a prototype Gladiator. Now last week, if you remember, the buzz was focused on a unique and never before seen hood design, which led us to believe there was something going on under the hood of that Grand Cherokee. THIS week, the spy photos of this Gladiator ALSO focus on the hood. This time however, Jeep has gone to great lengths to hide what’s going on. Allegedly, all week around the testing grounds, were seen camouflaged Gladiators doing test runs with the upcoming diesel option. No not Rambo type camo, but those big chunky and fluffy plastic comforter looking things that the drape all over areas of the vehicles they’re trying to keep away from spying eyes. And it is all around the hood and grille area that these Gladiators have all this camo. Maybe all that black plastic is trying to disguise something around the engine compartment, as well as what appears to be a new bulge in the hood. There’s no opening in that camo, though, so we’re probably not looking at a new Gladiator Shaker-Hood option with a functional ram air intake. (But wouldn’t that be something really cool!?) In any case, this has a LOT of people on the internet thinking that we may see a V8 Gladiator afterall, and the changes to the front clip needed to pass a V8 thru all the safety tests, might be the reason for all that camo. A V8 Gladiator would certainly answer the call for the masses who have been demanding more power from their Jeep truck. Towing, hauling, and overall awesomeness would all improve. FCA certainly has no shortage of V8 engine platforms available to it, and entrepreneurial spirits have never shied away from stuffing V8’s into their Wranglers, so it’s obviously possible. But as we’ve heard FCA’s CEO Mike Manely state too many times, it’s always been about safety standards, and a V8 in a Wrangler or Gladiator, doesn’t leave enough crumple zone for the vehicle to then pass the stringent crash tests needed for a vehicle to move into production. All this could be a moot point and just hopes and dreams taking the reins of the reports, and it’s just Jeep testing out some new hood designs and nothing more. Time will tell.
New Wranglers Under Federal Investigation
The 2018-19 Jeep Wrangler is the subject of a new investigation by the NHTSA. Agency documents detailed the new investigation after its Office of Defects Investigation received 608 various complaints from owners since the new models release. Combined with complaints received by Jeep’s parent automaker, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, the document shows 3,566 owners filed complaints surrounding frame weld concerns that may also allegedly affect steering systems. Weld concerns include “excessive slag” (a coating over welds), “splash” (small pieces of materials literally splashed onto surrounding metal during welding), welds with holes in them and poor weld penetration. The scope of this investigation claims it’s possible these issues may compromise the structural integrity of the Wrangler. As it gathered information from FCA, NHTSA said, the automaker did not fully address if these kinds of problems may pose a structural risk to the Wrangler’s frame. The investigation will, therefore, seek to understand if quality discrepancies may ((QUOTE)) “pose an unreasonable risk to motor vehicle safety.” Jeep said in a statement this week that it’s providing thief full cooperation with the investigation. It is important to note at this point, that 2020 Jeep Wranglers are NOT part of this investigation. This issue under investigation is also not related to a prior recall Jeep carried out over a separate weld issue. That recall, launched in September 2018, addressed welding issues with the front-track bar. The component connects the front axle to the body and a poor weld could make the Wrangler a difficult thing to control when steering. Said recall only applied to a small portion of early-production Wranglers. During this recall, however, The NHTSA also asked for additional information to address complaints related to steering systems, “wobbling” and unexpected lockups. Combined with questions around how these complaints may affect structural integrity and complaint overlap, the feds want to learn if the alleged faulty frame welds affect steering abilities. Jeep has mentioned in recent press releases that it is working on a mechanical steering fix via an upgraded steering damper to address customer complaints over vibrations that often occur in cold weather. Again, this is unrelated to the prior recall. NHTSA’s document said it has not received any reports of crashes or injuries due to the alleged defects. The investigation also follows news that Jeep engineered a remedy for the well-known “death wobble” problem.
Back in My Jeep Wrangler
Pinion Seal, Bearing, Spacer, Bearing on the Differential side, actuator, Axle Drive shaft seal. They said the main issue was the pinion nut but they replaced everything under warranty. I asked to do a transfer case service because it’s about that time. They need to grind the bolts back into shape on the transfer case skid plate because they were chewed up. They also noticed my upper and lower ball joints were below recommended spec so we replaced them with synergy ball joints as well as welded on gussets. HOly Cow is doing that putting your life in your own hands if you immediately have to drive 65 on a busy interstate. It was the first time I prayed for rush hour traffic. Danny the tech told me when I left the steering was going to be tight and not pull back like it normally does. It will take 500 hundred miles to be back to normal. In the Synergy directions it says due to the nature of metal on metal ball joints, these ball joints will require a small break in period for the first 500 miles or so for the bearing surface to seat. The steering may feel sticky or lack self centering during this time. HOLY MOLY! I’m surprised I didn’t get pulled over for drunk driving. Maggie May has had some issues as well. Wrong timing chain…metal in the engine. Replaced a new fuel pump. Now she’s down again.
Andy Lilienthal with Warn Industries
Andy Lilienthal started working at Warn Industries in 2006 and is the company’s Strategic Communications Manager. In his spare time he enjoys working on his 4x4s and even occasionally driving them.
Learns to be more specific when asking for parts.
Jeep Momma’s Product Review
Route 66 Mods – Powder coated Fasteners
Dress Up your Jeep Kit (or your Ford, Honda, Or Chevy)
Stainless Steel Screws for your Door Hinges, Cowls, A Pillar.
Route 66 Mods is a small family owned and operated business based in Kingman, AZ. We take great pride in what we do. Being the best source for powder coated fasteners, we do what others have failed at. We have developed a process that makes powder coating fasteners work. A multi-step process that we developed over a course of years of trial and error has produced a product that is superior to all competitors products. Our coatings will hold up to all the rigors that a fastener receives, from tightening to daily service and all weather conditions.
4Wheeling 4Help -(presents) JEEP Night!
Boardwalk Billy’s – Charlotte, North Carolina
Our last event of 2019!! Jeep Night 4Wheeling 4Help is a monthly event in Charlotte NC, March-October at Boardwalk Billy’s Matthews. Held on the first Monday of each month So…. Monday October 7th is it for 2019 and we are giving back to Alyssa Magro of Wheelin with CF, who will have her third lung transplant the beginning of October. Alyssa, has had a life of black trails, but this amazing woman continues to triumph through all. Giving back and supporting everyone. Life and challenges have not slowed her down. With her family and the amazing Jeeping Community we support, pull out a tow strap and help!! Attending this event is that. Giving back doing for others. If you play offroad, You’re invited!! Yes it’s JEEP Night, but if it’s 4wd we want to see you there(even Toyota’s). *you’re listening to the “JEEP Talk Show” so you’re in a Jeep, but is open to anyone!! Family and pet Friendly, Great Food, cold drinks(Tammy likes those)
Amazing Raffle Prizes, 10% food sales, and 100% of money raised goes to Alyssa
Thanks to @Keffer JEEP and Joe Maus for all of his support, capital Jeep, Southernized Gear, Rhino Lights, Suparee, Tarheel 4wd, 4Wheel Parts, Stacked Offroad, Mictuning, Nilight, State Farm, Carolina Metal Masters, SpiderWebShade, Nashville’ Metal Art, AT&T, and Boardwalk Billy’s
Tri-County 4 Wheelers Presents – MUD BOG!
More Info: https://tricounty4wheelers.com/calendar
Links Mentioned in Episode 404: