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Unread 02-25-2013, 12:41 PM   #1
idskot
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1991 YJ Wrangler 
 
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Transmission Swap Questions and Statements (Auto to Manual)

I have a 4.0L auto, and I'm looking to make it into a manual. I've done a lot of research, but I could always do more.

At any rate, I have the list of parts I need, and I'm pretty confident about this part of the list:
- AX-15 (Out of either XJ, YJ, or TJ. If out of XJ, new transfer case mounting points have to be drilled out.)
- Pedal Assembly (Brake / Clutch)
- Master cylinder
- Clutch hose (From master cylinder to transmission)
- Fly Wheel

I will be replacing the clutch, and replacing the syncros / bearings in the transmission.

From what I've read, the automatic and manual ECUs are the same, so that will stay. I have, however, read that a wire has to be grounded on the harness for the transmission, as it disallows the car to start if the gears are engaged. (Car has to be in Park or Neutral to start) I might just hook this up to a switch for some extra safety.

Some more research I've done, to consolidate as much information as possible, on the AX-15 includes 2WD models of this transmission.
From my understanding, the only difference between these two models is the tail housing and the main shaft.
The main shaft on the 2WD model is longer. This can, from all accounts I've read, be converted to a 4WD model. This is done by replacing the main shaft and removing the tail cone. Since most people will tell you to replace the syncros while the transmission is out, it equates to being the same amount of work.
Again, I have no direct experience with this, but based on research and schematics / diagrams I've seen.
The 4WD shaft can be found for about $200 dollars.

Most people on here will say, "Well, just get a 4WD model!" Down here where I live (Miami, FL), 4WD AX-15s are rare to come by for sale. Especially out of Wranglers. The most recent one I found at a Junkyard was selling for $800 dollars with about 125k+ miles on it. Mean while, on Craigslist, a 2WD AX-15 is being sold for $60 dollars.

My additional questions are this:
Am I missing anything in terms of the clutch? I've seen hydraulic control units on clutch diagrams -- but they never seem to be attached.

Also, is there any other information I'm missing / parts I'm not accounting for before I tackle this?

Thank you for your time.

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Unread 02-25-2013, 02:33 PM   #2
Doch80
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Have you looked for an NV3550 in your neck of the woods? They are about the same tranny as far as strength goes... depending who you talk to. Except for a transfercase shifter bracket it basicly bolts right up. Also, keep in mind the newer ax15 bellhousing has the external slave and from what I understand and have seen in my swap is that it's a sealed unit to the master. Basicly just take ouf the box and bolt it up. No bleeding.
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Unread 02-25-2013, 04:33 PM   #3
Hghgrad
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I just sold a compete ax15 swap out of my yj for $150, everything but the clutch pedal assembly. I'd hate to be in a state that everything like that cost so much.
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Unread 02-25-2013, 07:24 PM   #4
idskot
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Doch80 View Post
Have you looked for an NV3550 in your neck of the woods? They are about the same tranny as far as strength goes... depending who you talk to. Except for a transfercase shifter bracket it basicly bolts right up. Also, keep in mind the newer ax15 bellhousing has the external slave and from what I understand and have seen in my swap is that it's a sealed unit to the master. Basicly just take ouf the box and bolt it up. No bleeding.
Awesome! This answers my question very well.

As for the Novak tranny: they're actually tested and are considered stronger than the AX-15. They're also six speed, which is nice. However, they're even more expensive than AX-15's. $800+ is the cheapest I've found. For that I can buy a completely professionally rebuilt AX-15. Haha... not happening.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hghgrad View Post
I just sold a compete ax15 swap out of my yj for $150, everything but the clutch pedal assembly. I'd hate to be in a state that everything like that cost so much.
I wish! I read on the forums ALL the time of people up north saying: "I guess I can go to a U-pick and get a tranny for like $100 bucks, but uuugghhh."
Mean while, in South Florida... I'd claw my way through a group of people for that steal!

If you don't mind, can you read over my list and see if I got everything? I think that's it! But I can't be sure.
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Unread 02-25-2013, 07:24 PM   #5
Doch80
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Wow, I sold my non-working AX-15 for $150!.... and the NV3550 is a 5 speed. It replaced the AX-15 in the TJ's. Mine is from a 2000 or 2001. He wanted the newer 6-speed tranny so I got the NV3550 fairly cheap.
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Unread 02-25-2013, 07:35 PM   #6
Doch80
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If you actually get the AX-15 I would get the newer one with the external slave. If you're going to tear the tranny apart anyways and it's so cheap a 2x4 tranny isn't that big of a deal. From what I've read about the XJ tranny and trans (probably same as you) you'll have to re-clock but doesn't seem that hard.

Have you thought about tranny mounts? Don't know if the autos are the same as the 5-speeds. What about drive shaft lengths. If the auto is not the same length as the 5 speed then your drive shaft may be too long or too short...

Tranny
Clutch
Flywheel
Pedals
Master and slave...

That should be about it???
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Unread 02-25-2013, 07:37 PM   #7
idskot
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Doch80 View Post
Wow, I sold my non-working AX-15 for $150!.... and the NV3550 is a 5 speed. It replaced the AX-15 in the TJ's. Mine is from a 2000 or 2001. He wanted the newer 6-speed tranny so I got the NV3550 fairly cheap.
Oh, I'm sorry. I thought they were 6-speed. I wish I could find that deal down here.

I am, more than likely, going to buy a 4wd AX-15 out of a Cherokee for $200 dollars (which is a fair price). However, it's about 75 miles or so from my house. So, 150 miles is a long trip with a nice price tag on the gas. And ATM, I'm in the middle of an axle swap in the Jeep. So, I have to borrow someone else's truck. (I've been driving around my Mustang, and I guess I *could* put the tranny / bellhousing in the back seat with a tarp down or something... but meh.)
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Unread 02-25-2013, 07:44 PM   #8
idskot
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Doch80 View Post
If you actually get the AX-15 I would get the newer one with the external slave. If you're going to tear the tranny apart anyways and it's so cheap a 2x4 tranny isn't that big of a deal. From what I've read about the XJ tranny and trans (probably same as you) you'll have to re-clock but doesn't seem that hard.

Have you thought about tranny mounts? Don't know if the autos are the same as the 5-speeds. What about drive shaft lengths. If the auto is not the same length as the 5 speed then your drive shaft may be too long or too short...

Tranny
Clutch
Flywheel
Pedals
Master and slave...

That should be about it???
Yes, I'm aware of the clocking. That isn't too much of an issue for me. I have access to a drill press and I'm pretty good at measuring.
As you can tell: I can't be too picky down here. The transmission I'm looking at is external slave. However, I will deal with an internal slave if need be.

I have not thought about the tranny mounts, but I think they're the same? Please someone correct me if I'm wrong. I believe both are mounted to the two points in the cross member/skid. The drive shaft for the manual ends up being longer, but I believe the slip yoke will correct that for me. If not, I will replace it.

Some alluded in a post I read that perhaps the XJ transmission wasn't built as well (I suppose material wise) as the YJ/TJ versions. But, I think this is a fabrication. I don't think they'd make different quality transmissions; it'd end up costing more money for production.
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Unread 02-25-2013, 08:02 PM   #9
Doch80
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I have a driveshaft for you... as long as I can find it... if you'll pay shipping. I guess just figure out first if you need one after you get everything buttoned up. Pretty sure mines not going anywhere. I guess I can measure it and get back to you to see what the difference is.

What about a trans tunnel cover and the shifter boots/frame? you can probably modify the cover but you'll need the shifter boots.
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Unread 02-25-2013, 08:18 PM   #10
Hghgrad
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Forgot about the trans boots...I've got those and a rear shaft. Not sure what it would cost to ship them.

The cover is as easy as just cutting out for the new shifter. I free handed it with my plasma in about 2 seconds.
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Unread 02-25-2013, 08:40 PM   #11
idskot
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Doch80 View Post
I have a driveshaft for you... as long as I can find it... if you'll pay shipping. I guess just figure out first if you need one after you get everything buttoned up. Pretty sure mines not going anywhere. I guess I can measure it and get back to you to see what the difference is.

What about a trans tunnel cover and the shifter boots/frame? you can probably modify the cover but you'll need the shifter boots.
I will measure tomorrow

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hghgrad View Post
Forgot about the trans boots...I've got those and a rear shaft. Not sure what it would cost to ship them.

The cover is as easy as just cutting out for the new shifter. I free handed it with my plasma in about 2 seconds.
I'd really appreciate that, man. Recently the straps broke on my dana turdy-five and the shaft knocked around a bit and got a little dented. I haven't tested to see if it's out of balance or not.

I will measure it tomorrow and repost. At the very least, I will most definitely take you up on that shifter boot.
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Unread 02-25-2013, 10:02 PM   #12
rogerv
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When I went from the 999 to a ax-15, I had to modify the trans mount. A little cutting and welding, wasn't difficult at all.
My rear drive shaft had to be shortened 1 1/2" and the front lengthened the same.
Don't forget to ground the neutral safety switch, I ran mine directly to the (-) side of the batt.
The pedal assembly can be a bit of pain, try and have some extra hands when doing this part. I ended up pulling the steering column out to make more room.
I have some pics if it will help, just say the word.
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Unread 02-25-2013, 10:20 PM   #13
idskot
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rogerv View Post
When I went from the 999 to a ax-15, I had to modify the trans mount. A little cutting and welding, wasn't difficult at all.
My rear drive shaft had to be shortened 1 1/2" and the front lengthened the same.
Don't forget to ground the neutral safety switch, I ran mine directly to the (-) side of the batt.
The pedal assembly can be a bit of pain, try and have some extra hands when doing this part. I ended up pulling the steering column out to make more room.
I have some pics if it will help, just say the word.
Shortened?! Really?! That's weird! I could've swore the AX-15 was shorter.
I was thinking of making a hidden switch for the neutral safety switch.

And I wouldn't mind seeing pictures of your install.

Most transmission swaps I've seen are manual to auto. I couldn't find one with a lot of good solid information about the inverse.
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Unread 02-25-2013, 11:09 PM   #14
rogerv
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The name of my thread is "changing over to a 5spd". Search it out, there were a few other snags I ran into. All of my troubles were solved on this forum with help from a lot very knowledgeable members.
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Unread 02-25-2013, 11:17 PM   #15
JeepinJeremy
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I have a complete ax 15 out of a 95xj external slave
4.0 flywheel
pedal assemble
floor plate and boot
non tilt column with key
transmission mount with good bushing bolt right up to factory mount and exhaust hanger
used clutch
used master and new slave no hose
All in great working order will ship on your dime but it most likely wont be very cheap.
if your interested in any of the parts let me know.
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