Well I just got back from the LJ's first big trip. I just went on a trip to Ontario Canada and back, from NC. Total mileage was about 2,000 miles. The Jeep performed pretty well with a few problems.
On the way up I noticed I started to develop the odor of gear oil. I noticed that I have a front pinion leak, and gear oil was blanketing the under belly of the Jeep. I kept a check on the gear oil, it was fine for the trip.
On the way back I started to notice a noise best described as a rattle. I started noticing it in 5th and 6th gear. When shifting into gear under heavy acceleration I could hear the rattle noise in both of these gears. The noise seemed to go away after being in gear for awhile. About 800 miles after this noise started it spread to 4th gear and also now during in-gear deceleration. My mechanical engineering buddy said he thought it was the throw out bearing on the clutch. The clutch also makes a noise when pressing the pedal in, but this noise has been there since I bought the Jeep. Clutch throw out bearing diagnosis seem correct?
ALSO...around 65-75 I've picked up another vibration which feels like a driveline vibration. I have a UCF tummy tuck which gives me about 1.5" transfer case lift, and I have 1.75" spacers in the front with stock springs in the rear. Surely I don't need a SYE with this small of a lift. Maybe I need adjustable upper control arms to tilt the pinion?
Jeep in Canada: