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Unread 08-24-2001, 05:07 PM   #1
Nightclaw
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Join Date: Jul 2001
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HELP - EZLocker Drivability Problem

I've had an EZLocker installed in my stock D35C for about 10 months/9000 miles. Three days ago, while making left-hand turns with the clutch engaged, the locker started to "miss" anywhere from once to three times, causing the Jeep to lurch badly, with a huge driveline impact (ka-THUNK!!) with each "miss". Historically, it typically does this like once a week, but now it's on 90% of all left-hand turns. I did check the rear tire pressures, and both tires are within less than ˝psi of each other. I rotated the tires five days ago, but again, this didn't start happening this frequently (or this violently) until Wednesday. Is there anything I can check without dropping the diff cover?

The locker is an EZLocker in a D35C w/ 3.07 gears. Tires are 30x9.5 BFGoodrich AT/KO's with about 12k miles on the clock.

Any suggestions (besides "get a REAL locker!" ) would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

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[b]'94 YJ Sahara Hardtop[/b]
4.0L / AX-15 / Stock NP231 / Stock D30 (open) / D60 (35-spline, Detroit locker, Moser axles) / rear disc brakes / 4.56 gears / Advanced Adapters SYE & CV Shaft / 33" BFG MT-KM's / Thorley Header / Magnaflow Muffler / BesTop Flares
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Unread 08-24-2001, 09:49 PM   #2
Wicked YJ
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Sorry I can't think of anything that would cause your locker to start doing this. I had a lockrite that did the same thing all the time, I had to keep the clutch engaged around all turns. I think you might want to take a look at the locker, which means you'll have to take the diff. cover off. You might have damanged your locker, chipped a tooth or something. Good luck
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94 Red YJ
4" RE lift, 2" body lift, 4.10 gears, ford 8.8 in the rear, powertrax No-Slip in the rear, lockrite in the front, complete custom roll cage by Carolina rock shop, and corbeau seats and 5pt. harnesses, and of course herculined
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Unread 08-25-2001, 03:19 PM   #3
Nightclaw
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Well, I figure it's either a chipped tooth or three, or one of the four little springs decided to either snap or pop out (even though they shouldn't be able to...). I'm going to drop the cover tomorrow afternoon and have a look. Assuming, that is, I can find some synth. oil - I can't stand the odor of the organic sludge...:barf:

Oh well, it's probably a good idea to do anyway, as it looks like I didn't use enough form-a-gasket around the cover last time (seeping, but not yet dripping). Heh...
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[b]'94 YJ Sahara Hardtop[/b]
4.0L / AX-15 / Stock NP231 / Stock D30 (open) / D60 (35-spline, Detroit locker, Moser axles) / rear disc brakes / 4.56 gears / Advanced Adapters SYE & CV Shaft / 33" BFG MT-KM's / Thorley Header / Magnaflow Muffler / BesTop Flares
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Unread 09-06-2001, 12:11 PM   #4
Nightclaw
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**UPDATE**

Well, I dropped the cover last weekend and inspected the assembly. No missing/broken springs, and no evident damage to the locker's teeth.

I put everything back together, and with it still in the air, I ran the wheels up to ~20MPH. It was evident that the left tire was out of round, so I rotated the driver-side tires. The former-front tire spun true.

Back on the road however, the diff still skips, causing the Jeep to lurch dangerously and a sound like a small canon firing from the driveline impact when making light to moderate on-throttle left-hand turns (and, less frequently, at random intervals while driving straight). While I have no problems when turning with the clutch disengaged, that's a tough maneuver to perform when you're turning left from a stop light...

I double-checked the tire pressure, and both rear tires are less than ˝-psi different from each other. I'm out of ideas here. Is there something else I should be looking at/for? Any help would be appreciated - as it stands, I do not consider the Jeep roadworthy. Thanks!
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[b]'94 YJ Sahara Hardtop[/b]
4.0L / AX-15 / Stock NP231 / Stock D30 (open) / D60 (35-spline, Detroit locker, Moser axles) / rear disc brakes / 4.56 gears / Advanced Adapters SYE & CV Shaft / 33" BFG MT-KM's / Thorley Header / Magnaflow Muffler / BesTop Flares
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Unread 09-06-2001, 07:33 PM   #5
osburn
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Man, I'd look again. You sure all the pins and springs are in place? Look at the cross-shaft. Check to see that it's straight and not cracked. I know you already looked, but I'd suspect you missed something.

If the locker is still ok, I'd suspect the housing is bent. Have you recently jumped the Jeep or anything that might have strained the rear axle? All Dana 35s that have seen trail duty are bent to some degree. That's just the way it is. Once they get to about .075 out, that's when something in the diff gets damaged. Now why would I know that?
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Unread 09-10-2001, 10:40 AM   #6
Nightclaw
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Yep - all the pins and springs are present, accounted for, and undamaged. The cross-shaft was not obviously tweaked, but then again I didn't give it a straightness test - just eyeballed it...

To the best of my knowledge, the truck's never been jumped (I'm the third owner though, so who knows?). It has seen some pretty good trail use, including a couple axle hang-ups, but I haven't been wheeling in months. For the last 5 months or so, it's been my commuter.

Hmm... I'll tear down the diff again this weekend to make sure I didn't miss anything obvious. But if the locker really is intact and undamaged, how can I check to see if the housing is warped?

Also, one of the previous owners did run the pumpkin dry at one point, as the axle shaft ends on the diff side are heat-blued (the carrier and ring/pinion show no signs of heat damage though). Could this be historical damage coming back to haunt me now?
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[b]'94 YJ Sahara Hardtop[/b]
4.0L / AX-15 / Stock NP231 / Stock D30 (open) / D60 (35-spline, Detroit locker, Moser axles) / rear disc brakes / 4.56 gears / Advanced Adapters SYE & CV Shaft / 33" BFG MT-KM's / Thorley Header / Magnaflow Muffler / BesTop Flares
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Unread 09-10-2001, 10:43 AM   #7
Nightclaw
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By the way osburn - out the door, how much did it cost you to drop your D60's in your YJ? Obviously, if my axle housing is warped... Well, let's just say I'll need to fit something into my budget...
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[b]'94 YJ Sahara Hardtop[/b]
4.0L / AX-15 / Stock NP231 / Stock D30 (open) / D60 (35-spline, Detroit locker, Moser axles) / rear disc brakes / 4.56 gears / Advanced Adapters SYE & CV Shaft / 33" BFG MT-KM's / Thorley Header / Magnaflow Muffler / BesTop Flares
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Unread 09-10-2001, 08:47 PM   #8
osburn
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You can take the axle in for inspection at some driveline specialty shops. Here in Socal you can take it to MIT to be checked. That's where I had my Dana 35 checked. ARB insisted it be checked before they warrantied my locker the second time.

The two Dana 60s delivered were about $9K.
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Unread 09-12-2001, 07:19 PM   #9
Nightclaw
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Thanks for the info. I'll give MIT a call. I hope they're open on weekends, as Santee's a wee bit south from work...

Regarding the D60's, all I can say is - wow. Waaaayy out of my price range. Good to know for future reference, though.
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[b]'94 YJ Sahara Hardtop[/b]
4.0L / AX-15 / Stock NP231 / Stock D30 (open) / D60 (35-spline, Detroit locker, Moser axles) / rear disc brakes / 4.56 gears / Advanced Adapters SYE & CV Shaft / 33" BFG MT-KM's / Thorley Header / Magnaflow Muffler / BesTop Flares
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Unread 09-13-2001, 08:22 PM   #10
osburn
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MIT also sells axles by the way. Much cheaper than Dynatrac.
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Unread 09-14-2001, 05:15 PM   #11
Nightclaw
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I'm leaving the office here in about 20 minutes to drive down to MIT to give them a sit-rep and draw up a battle plan. I'm hoping it turns out to be a loose screw between the wheel...

If not, I plan on asking them about a Ford 8.8" swap.
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[b]'94 YJ Sahara Hardtop[/b]
4.0L / AX-15 / Stock NP231 / Stock D30 (open) / D60 (35-spline, Detroit locker, Moser axles) / rear disc brakes / 4.56 gears / Advanced Adapters SYE & CV Shaft / 33" BFG MT-KM's / Thorley Header / Magnaflow Muffler / BesTop Flares
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Unread 09-14-2001, 09:52 PM   #12
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Gaaahh!! I just got back from MIT with a severe case of sticker shock. MIT can build a Ford 8.8", but they want $2400 - $200 less than their Dana 60 price!! And that does not include regearing the front axle or install labor!

Yes, I know it can be done for under $1000 doing it myself, but the landlord would pitch a screaming fit if I undertook something requiring welding, cutting and grinding in the driveway (she wouldn't be too upset if I just bolted in a pre-built axle though).

So, for everything pre-built, ready to drop right into the Jeep, is $2400 a fair price? This is with a full remanufacture, C-clip elimination, e-brake cables, Detroit locker, 4.56:1 gears and setup, U-Joint yoke adapter, new U-bolts, and all spring pads/perches welded on in the correct locations.

FWIW, their pricing for regearing the front D30 is fairly reasonable: $680 out the door.

Oh, and their thought about the axle tubes on my D35C was that they're about as straight as a San Francisco transvestite... Thus, the terrible skipping I'm getting.

Anyhow, what do you guys think - fair prices? Or can the same setup be had for less?
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[b]'94 YJ Sahara Hardtop[/b]
4.0L / AX-15 / Stock NP231 / Stock D30 (open) / D60 (35-spline, Detroit locker, Moser axles) / rear disc brakes / 4.56 gears / Advanced Adapters SYE & CV Shaft / 33" BFG MT-KM's / Thorley Header / Magnaflow Muffler / BesTop Flares
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Unread 09-15-2001, 08:45 AM   #13
osburn
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I would talk to them about their Dana 44. Among axle gurus, the Dana 44 is considered the stronger axle when compared to an 8.8. I believe MIT's Dana 44 cost are significantly less.

I must admit, you're coming across the same lessons I learned when I was axle shopping. The cost of a Dana 60 over the Dana 44 from the same vendor was usually close enough, that putting in a Dana 44 didn't seem cost effective. But now, with the new popularity of Dana 60s, Dana 44s are dropping in price. Not to mention all the used Dana 44s becoming available as those fellows upgrade to Dana 60s.
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Unread 09-16-2001, 11:12 PM   #14
Nightclaw
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Well, I did bring up the Dana 44 with the guy, and he said the price between that and the 8.8 is negligible. But for a measly $200 extra (since I'm already looking at over $3k out the door including front-axle regearing), I think I'm just going to bite the bullet and go for the D60. There just isn't anything I ever plan on doing in the truck that would even come close to breaking a D60, but it is conceivable that I could frag a D44.

Well, regardless, the Jeep is now officially parked semi-permanently until I have cash on hand to do the work. Looks like it's going to be about 3 months before it sees any trips farther than to the corner 7-11...
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[b]'94 YJ Sahara Hardtop[/b]
4.0L / AX-15 / Stock NP231 / Stock D30 (open) / D60 (35-spline, Detroit locker, Moser axles) / rear disc brakes / 4.56 gears / Advanced Adapters SYE & CV Shaft / 33" BFG MT-KM's / Thorley Header / Magnaflow Muffler / BesTop Flares
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Unread 09-17-2001, 09:39 AM   #15
Wicked YJ
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Man that sucks. I'm glad you've figured out what your going to do. Good luck.
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4" RE lift, 2" body lift, 4.10 gears, ford 8.8 in the rear, powertrax No-Slip in the rear, lockrite in the front, complete custom roll cage by Carolina rock shop, and corbeau seats and 5pt. harnesses, and of course herculined
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