Smokey the 2005 WK 4.7L (Re) Build - JeepForum.com
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post #1 of 236 Old 08-15-2016, 03:06 AM Thread Starter
nathanjaybar
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Smokey the 2005 WK 4.7L (Re) Build

I've been looking for a project car for some time and came across a dark grey 2005 WK 4.7L 4WD on Craigslist with just over 100K miles on it. The description was minimal, and only stated there was a rod knock and low compression in cylinder 2. I figured what the heck and went to go take a look. I ended up buying it after poking around and hearing it "run". I figured since I've been driving and working on my '06 4.7L for just over a year now and love it, I might as well take this as a learning experience and see what happens.

I got it home, dove in and started documenting the project. I figured I would share as I go along. Perhaps this could help someone down the road and I wouldn't be surprised if some people here had some insight into this process.

As I said, it's a 2005 WK 4.7L in Dark Khaki Pearl, hence "Smokey". She doesn't actually smoke... at all... it would need to run to smoke. So, yeah...

Let me say I am no mechanic, and am doing all this work from home with whatever time I can find to work on it. I have a few pictures I'll post now with some descriptions and I will continue to post more as I take them.


This is the Jeep as it was when I went to go look at it:

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In tow:

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Dirty and clean engine bay:

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I started pulling things out, here is a shot with the intake, alternator and fan clutch pulled. There is still some freon in the A/C compressor so I can't completely remove it, I just unbolted it and pulled it to the side. At this point I started pulling the wiring harness on both sides and disconnecting the spark plugs and fuel injectors.

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This is right after pulling the fuel rail. The paper towels were there to catch any excess fuel:

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I unbolted the intake manifold and when I lifted it off I found a rats nest in the small space between the intake and the engine (before and after):

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Passenger side valve cover removed:

img_7432.jpg

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post #2 of 236 Old 08-15-2016, 03:15 AM Thread Starter
nathanjaybar
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At this point, I found the problem to cylinder #2. The part of the head that holds the lifter was smashed. I'm assuming there is some correlation between the rod knock and this. The lifter was at the bottom of the head and I found the broken part of the head floating around in there too:

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After I found the head needed to be replaced I cleaned up a little and put the valve cover back on. Next step is to take the oil pan off and see just how bad that spun bearing is, and if any of the rods are bent. If I'm dealing with a bent rod, I may reconsider what to do next. If the rods are fine I'll replace the bearings, and probably both heads with remanufactured, pre-assembled heads. Looks like they go for about $400 each online which is better than I thought it would be. From the looks of it I'll need to replace some sprockets, in which case I'll probably do a full timing chain/gear overhaul while I have it apart.

This is how she sits for now, until I can crawl under there and keep diggin:

img_7433.jpg
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post #3 of 236 Old 08-15-2016, 03:22 AM
SavageSalad
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Looks like you saved it from the brink of sitting in a junkyard. Excited to see the second life you give this thing!
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post #4 of 236 Old 08-15-2016, 05:38 AM
caulk04
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Lash adjuster gone bad, rocker jumped, head broken. Sadly it happens rather frequently on the 4.7 as they age.

You're going to have to drop the front axle to get the oil pan off...FYI.

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post #5 of 236 Old 08-18-2016, 10:09 PM Thread Starter
nathanjaybar
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Got a little bit of work done today. As I said before, I want to pull the oil pan and check out the rod bearings before I pull the heads. Wanted to clear up some space down there to work so I yanked the y-pipe:

I started by removing both front fender wells to gain better access to the exhaust manifolds. I loosened and removed the exhaust manifold to y-pipe bolts. I left one partly attached so it wouldn't fall when I got everything else unbolted.

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I supported the transmission with my jack and some wood blocks to protect it. You can see my extra-extra safety with the set of jacks even though the Jeep is on ramps.

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Here's the crossmember out. 12 bolts total.

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I disconnected the O2 sensors and unbolted the metal bracket that supports the exhaust. When I replaced my y-pipe in my '06 I discovered this was a LOT easier than trying to shimmy it forward out of the rubber grommet. It's only 2 nuts. Also, I opted to cut the wires on one of the O2 sensors. For anyone who's attempted to unclip that ONE pesky sensor that is tucked up towards the top of the transmission, you completely understand why I opted for this. This was a $40 decision I was happy to make after wrestling with it for almost 2 hours on the other Jeep. I'm pretty sure the sensors are original and should be replaced any way.

img_7480.jpg


Not knowing how long this whole project is going to take, I preferred the transmission was sitting as naturally as possible so I put the crossmember back in and removed the jack. I threw some foil on the open end of the muffler to keep dust and critters out.

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I did the same with the foil on the exhaust manifolds.

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That was all the time I had today, I'm going to pick it back up on Saturday. So, until then....

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post #6 of 236 Old 08-19-2016, 02:09 AM
takman
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Maybe a used 4.7 from a junk yard, cheapest option? I've seen some on ebay, body smashed in an accident, but engine still good.
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post #7 of 236 Old 08-19-2016, 09:47 AM
Hendrix9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by caulk04 View Post
Lash adjuster gone bad, rocker jumped, head broken. Sadly it happens rather frequently on the 4.7 as they age.
I'll be curious to see if it's that, or if the valve seat started to drop which kept the valve from going all the way back up allowing for the slop for the rocker to jump off.

Low miles for the year, hope you can save it without having to do a full rebuild. I bought a '04 with 145k on it that supposedly had a bad 4.7 and I thought that mileage wasn't bad. Aside from confirming that mine has a blown headgasket but runs okay-ish I haven't made anywhere near the progress you have yet.

I've seen a couple WJ guys who had the valve hit the piston slightly from a dropped valve seat and they were successful in just sanding/buffing the dented piston and slapping it back together. All depending how much your time is worth vs your money I guess. Personally I don't have either right now! haha. Good luck!

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post #8 of 236 Old 08-21-2016, 01:14 PM Thread Starter
nathanjaybar
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Ok, let me start off by saying if I never have to take the oil pan off of a 4.7L it will still be too soon.

I spent yesterday tearing in to the bottom end so I could get a better look at the rod bearings and see what the damage was down there. After almost 3 hours of peeling the windage tray from the oil pan, inch by inch, I finally got access. I absolutely had to drop the front axle to get the pan out. I did not remove the axle, I just disconnected the 3 mounting points and rotated it back, supporting it with jack stands so it wouldn't fall too far. I found out that this Jeep has the dreaded upper bushing issue and the top bushing is toast. I haven't wrapped my mind around that yet. It will need to be replaced before she gets put back together. So that's the bad news, however the good news (I think) is what I found when I got the pan off. I was expecting some discolored rod ends and a good amount of excessive wear, with metal flakes in the bottom of the pan... and I found none of that. It does look like the engine overheated, everything has a golden brown tint to it. However from what I can tell every bearing is in good shape with no unacceptable movement in any direction. I rotated the crank several times to test in all orientations and even reached up to feel the upper (piston side) rod bearings and everything is tight on that front too.

I'm confused.

I heard the engine run and there was a definite LOUD knocking coming from what sounded like the bottom end of the engine, on the driver side. The only thing I can think is that due to the broken head, something was knocking or hitting and the sound was being transferred through the engine which made it sound like it was coming from below. Let me say, I have not taken the valve cover off the driver side yet, so I don't know if there are broken lash adjusters or rockers.

I'm open to ideas.


Here's the upper front axle bushing that so conveniently needs to be replaced. I suppose this is the time to do it while it's all apart.

img_7509.jpg


It was extremely hard to disconnect the front driveshaft from the axle. Whoever was in here last went a little overboard with the loctite.

img_7520.jpg


To lighten the load of the front axle I removed the weight (I'm assuming a dampener of some sort) and drained the axle. I was planning on changing the oil any way as I'm pretty sure it was the stuff that came from the factory. It doesn't seem like the previous owner was keen on maintenance.

img_7510.jpg
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This is how I supported the axle, it seemed to work pretty well. Also a shot of the front support disconnected from the frame. I ended up having to remove the bracket to get enough clearance to remove the pan.

img_7523.jpg
img_7525.jpg


3 hours later and I got the pan separated from the gasket.

img_7526.jpg


The fruits of my labor from the day:

img_7533.jpg


I have crank and bearing pics I'll post shortly.

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post #9 of 236 Old 08-21-2016, 03:49 PM Thread Starter
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Here are the images from the underside after I took the pan off. Unless I'm missing something, this looks to be in pretty good shape.


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post #10 of 236 Old 08-21-2016, 09:02 PM Thread Starter
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I wasn't planning on working on the Jeep today but curiosity got the best of me and I went out to pull the valve cover off the driver side. I was honestly thinking I'd find a wreck under there like the other side. Apart from a few unevenly worn cam journals, it looks to be in good shape. Looks like I'm going to end up pulling the heads off to see what shape the pistons are in, then get to ordering new heads.


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post #11 of 236 Old 08-22-2016, 06:56 AM
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If this were me I would pull the engine and replace the bearings on the rods and crank. One of them, rod or main, could have spun partially or fully which may cause a knock.

Also, I would not leave the diff empty of oil for too long, the gears will rust with out the oil in an open environment.

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post #12 of 236 Old 08-22-2016, 01:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nathanjaybar View Post
I heard the engine run and there was a definite LOUD knocking coming from what sounded like the bottom end of the engine, on the driver side. The only thing I can think is that due to the broken head, something was knocking or hitting and the sound was being transferred through the engine which made it sound like it was coming from below.

I'm open to ideas.
If you heard rod knock and Craigslist ad said rod knock, it is time for a re manufactured or used motor. You may be able to rebuild it but that means pulling the motor, pulling the crank, pulling all the main bearings, measuring everything, and then machining and replacing everything. Lots of time and money with no really good odds of long term success.

Excellent chance that one of your rods and bearings are toast. If the broken valve lifter was on the exhaust and the exhaust valve did not open that would create a tremendous amount of pressure and heat and easily cook a crank bearing.

My 2005 was purchased new and I replaced the valve lifters last year with new Mopar OEM's at 75,000 miles when I replaced the valve cover gaskets. I knew that the lifters were a weak point. If my engine had a rod knock I would replace it with a re manufactured Jasper or equivalent. To make it a bigger project I would replace it with a used engine from a low mileage totaled vehicle.

The problem I have is that I live in the rust belt and I will likely lose my Jeep to rust before anything huge - like engine or transmission issue - happens to it mechanically.

Good warranty on this engine. Take a moment and read through the reconditioning process steps in the engine description:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Reman-99-07-...Jeep#vi-ilComp
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post #13 of 236 Old 08-22-2016, 02:17 PM
Hendrix9
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Promar engine (the seller in the ebay link) is also where I was going to get a remanned from if I had to get one, but mostly because they aren't that far from me in CT. If something's wrong with the reman I'd want to be able to get face to face with the company. Just IMO.

I think I'd pull the broken head off and see if the piston made contact with the valve before I made my decision, but I definitely don't disagree with RCS1300.

I keep going back and forth on trying to just replace my headgaskets and see if it'll run but it's a ***** of a job to not even guarantee success. My jeep sat for long time after overheating. Price difference being 1500ish vs a reman... it's a tough call when money's tight.

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post #14 of 236 Old 08-23-2016, 02:19 AM
takman
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I had no idea about the lifter issues...I've only owned my jeep for 4 months....but I have learned a lot this forum...its good to know.

However.....I think there is something to be said about maintenance here...

Not changing your oil frequently, or running the engine low on oil, is going to be bad for any engine. And I am willing to bet the previous owner(s) of Smokey didn't maintain it well. And if there is a weak point in the engine...lack of oil, or oil that has too many miles it, will exploit that weakness.

my 2005 grand cherokee has 146,000 miles on it. I bought it from my father in law, who had every service done on time by the dealer. It runs perfect, not a single thing wrong with it. No major engine work done to it, never had the lifters changed.
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post #15 of 236 Old 08-23-2016, 01:08 PM Thread Starter
nathanjaybar
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ggt1_02 View Post
Also, I would not leave the diff empty of oil for too long, the gears will rust with out the oil in an open environment.
Good to know, thanks. I put the fill and drain plugs back in so the diff is not breathing free, but perhaps I'll fill it back up now regardless. It's actually a lot lighter than I thought it would be so I don't think ~2qt of fluid will make it unmanageable.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RCS1300 View Post
Excellent chance that one of your rods and bearings are toast. If the broken valve lifter was on the exhaust and the exhaust valve did not open that would create a tremendous amount of pressure and heat and easily cook a crank bearing.
I was debating checking all the rod bearings only because I feel like it's too good to be true that there's nothing noticeably wrong with any of them. I don't know how well you can tell from the pictures but there doesn't seem to be any major discoloration on any of the rod or crank journals which leads me to believe none of them completely overheated. I may even go as far to test clearances on them all too.

I also don't recall which lifter was smashed, exhaust or intake. I'm not sure if you can tell from the photo.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hendrix9 View Post
I think I'd pull the broken head off and see if the piston made contact with the valve before I made my decision, but I definitely don't disagree with RCS1300.
That's one of the next things on my list to do, pull the heads. What are you looking for in this? Obviously any signs the top of the pistons have had contact with the valves, but anything else?


Appreciate all the comments, everyone.

'06 WK 4.7L V8 4WD | Recently purchased '05 WK 4.7L V8 4WD
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