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Unread 05-15-2012, 08:10 PM   #3196
willydigger
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TJJP77 View Post
I would caution against making such a blanket statement. My cam gear had significant and noticeable wear with only 9,300 miles on it. Both gears are only surface hardened a few microns and once that protective "layer" is gone, it's game on. The camshaft is stronger by the nature of what it is made from, but it is not impervious.
I suppose that is true. IMO though the OPDA gear will look much worse than the camshaft gear. I suppose also that "good enough" is a matter of perspective.

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Unread 05-16-2012, 10:51 AM   #3197
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Quote:
Originally Posted by willydigger View Post
Tom,

In your case with 13K I wouldn't worry about the camshaft gear. We'll get that out of the way first. The OPDA gear is the wear gear so it is designed to wear faster since it's easier to repair.

The step by step goes like this:
Pull it and inspect. You're looking for binding of the shaft, unlikely at 13K and gear wear. Gear wear is an indicator of binding. If you have excessive gear wear, chances are at some point your OPDA will fail. Whether that means laughing monkey or catastrophic gear failure is unknown.

I would suspect you will show symptoms of binding and gear wear. You can try to have Chrysler fix it. This is highly unlikely though there are some who have successfully made Chrysler fix it. It is worth a shot. In my case the dealer played dumb so I will assume you will get no where.

The course of action after finding premature gear wear is to mod the existing OPDA or by new and start from scratch. In your case, again with only 13K, I think you will be fine with modifying your existing OPDA. The most effective option at this point is either the oil cup or oil bath. Both are essentially the same. Both are covered in the alternate design section of the first page.

Regarding oil, I use Mobil 1 Turbo Diesel Truck 5w40. It is a mixed fleet oil for both diesel AND gasoline engines. I've used it for over a year. It is the only synthetic that I am aware of with the adequate ZDDP. This is described on the first page too.
Thanks for the info Willy. I'll have to pull the OPDA after I get it out of storage and running again.

TJJP77--did you have to replace your cam at 9,300 miles? Was that recently or was it closer to when it was new?

Frankly, I've only become aware of this problem with the 4.0 engine in the past six months. A friend of mine has a 2005 LJ with 65K on it and another has 100K on a 2005 TJ. Both claim they do not hear the noise or feel they have any probs. I'll keep working on them.

One more thing. I did some research into oil and came up with one I didn't see on the list. It's Amsoil ZROD 10W30. It's formulated for older and performance engines with flat tappet cams. Amsoil claims 1,320 ppm of phosphorous and 1,440 ppm of zinc. I've read some good write-ups on a Corvette forum and Bob's the Oil Guy. However, I couldn't find any info on anyone running it in a 4.0L Jeep. Has anybody used this stuff?

For my situation, this seems ideal because of the extra zinc and phosphorous plus the corrosion inhibitors since I have such little time to use my Wrangler. The only knock I can give it is the price--but I found a local dealer that claims he'll sell it to me for $8 qt.

I'm interested to see what you guys think of this oil. I've included a link to the Amsoil website.

Thanks,
Tom

http://www.amsoil.com/storefront/zrt.aspx
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Unread 05-16-2012, 11:16 AM   #3198
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WranglerTom View Post
I'm interested to see what you guys think of this oil. I've included a link to the Amsoil website.

Thanks,
Tom

http://www.amsoil.com/storefront/zrt.aspx
Lot's of folks love the amsoil oil. I have 2 issues with it.

Cost: Too much money for oil IMHO
Availability: You can only get it from a distributor.
I'd rather buy my oil off the shelf.

Most all "High Mileage" oils are good for these dinosaur engines.
Look for a oil that has the ACEA A3/B3 A3/B4 rating.
High Mileage Mobil1 10W30 has app 1100 ppm of Zinc, and 1000 ppm of phosphorus and is easy to find. Walmart sells it in 5 quart jugs.
I think many folks go crazy over zinc content.
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Unread 05-16-2012, 10:23 PM   #3199
TJJP77
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WranglerTom View Post
TJJP77--did you have to replace your cam at 9,300 miles? Was that recently or was it closer to when it was new?
Tom,

I bought the Jeep in 2010 with 9300 miles on it and identified the issue before even driving it back to Michigan. Both the OPDA gear and cam gear had significant/visible wear. Even though I kinda knew I was wasting my time, before I left to drive back I tried a new OPDA gear in the hopes that a new one wouldn't wear.

Once I got back to Michigan (1,300 miles later!) I pulled the OPDA again and found the same wear on my new gear that the old one had. Once that hardened layer on the cam is broken, it will simply eat away at a new gear.

I drove the Jeep around that summer since the damage was already done. I knew I needed a cam, so I ordered up the parts and figured I'd tackle it the following spring.

Fast forward to spring 2011 - Jeep had about 12,000 miles on it by then and me and a friend pulled an all-nighter one Sunday (finished around 3:00 am, had to be up to get ready for work by 6 am...yikes!) and swapped the cam. I didn't drive the Jeep much during the rest of 2011 thanks to a woman who ran a red light and hit me. I spent the rest of the summer trying to find a body shop I could trust and waiting to get the Jeep in for repair. By the time the repairs were done, the summer was turning into fall and I didn't drive it much after that.

I finally managed to accumulate enough miles to be satisified with the repair by driving to Moab this year. The pictures of my new cam and OPDA gear post repair with about 4K miles on them are back a few pages.

While I've fixed the cam/OPDA gear wear issue, I haven't addessed the other design issue that prevents lubrication from reaching the upper bushing. Mine didn't have the binding issue others have experienced, but there is evidence of heat scoring there. My plan is to take it apart and regrease it periodically until a solution like stripperguy is working on comes along or Chrysler re-designs the unit (yeah right!).

I know I'm in the minority here, but I personally think there are two separate issues going on with the OPDA. If you read the original "recall" document, it clearly states that there was a problem with the OPDA gear on "some" units that would cause it to wear prematurely. I feel based on what I've seen that it was a gear alloying/hardening issue. I'm not convinced that it was contained to just the build population stated in the "recall" since many late '05 and '06 vehicles experience the same wear and symptoms as described in that document.

Working around manufacturing processes in the past has me convinced that the vendor for the OPDA gear had process control issues with their gear alloying/hardening and the part probably wavered in and out of specification all throughout the 2005 and 2006 model years since the wear/damage is the same in most of the pictures I've seen here regardless of build date. The only variance seems to be the length of the wear spot on the teeth around the circumference of the gear - some gears exhibit even wear for the full 360 degrees, while other show light wear 180 degrees apart from heavy wear. This could be aggravated by the binding/lubrication issues, but that wouldn't explain the very specific wear pattern as the binding would affect rotation of the shaft for the full 360 degrees, not just half of it. Its more likely excessive runout on the gear or a gear that had it's center hole drilled off center in the blank, or a slightly "warped" (or just mis-machined/formed in the manufacturing process) OPDA shaft that wanders a bit at the oil pump end. A "warped" shaft would explain why a second gear installed on a friend's '06 exhibited the same uneven gear wear as the original gear we took off.

The shaft wear and binding are undoubtedly aggravated by the poor design of the OPDA - it doesn't get lubrication to the upper bushing. Is the binding at the top of the shaft causing the gear at the bottom of the shaft to wear as seems to be the popular opinion here? I'm not sure...maybe it is, maybe it isn't. I do feel that excessive shaft wear/binding is aggravated by a gear or shaft that has the potential runout issue described in the previous paragraph...based on the unever wear shown on the gear, it seems to me that the shaft is actually rocking back and forth in the housing as it spins, which would put a tremendous strain on the upper bushing and cause the wear and knocking/squealing noises that many have experienced.

Anyway, sorry for the long rambling response. I'm sure I'll get some dissent and that's ok. My cam and OPDA gear have been fixed and I'm happy. At some point I'll permanently address the upper bushing issue and I'll be even happier.
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Unread 05-17-2012, 02:09 AM   #3200
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Did you replace it with a roller cam? I hope
I'm thinking if the wear on my 4.0 cam gets any worse I'll be putting one of these in? What say Jeep Forums O.T.??

http://www.shop.505performance.com/p...&categoryId=23
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Unread 05-17-2012, 05:24 AM   #3201
TJJP77
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LRod View Post
Did you replace it with a roller cam?
No, I went with a stock cam. I also replaced it without removing the head or removing or replacing the lifters. There's a separate thread I created showing how I did it with some banter back and forth about whether replacing the lifters is all that crucial with low miles. I feel comfortable saying that I have enough miles and hours on the engine since the repair that if the lifters were going to fail from being mis-matched to the new cam, they would have done so by now.
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Unread 05-17-2012, 12:00 PM   #3202
LRod
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TJJP77 View Post
No, I went with a stock cam. I also replaced it without removing the head or removing or replacing the lifters. There's a separate thread I created showing how I did it with some banter back and forth about whether replacing the lifters is all that crucial with low miles. I feel comfortable saying that I have enough miles and hours on the engine since the repair that if the lifters were going to fail from being mis-matched to the new cam, they would have done so by now.
Your TJ is an O2, I thought the OPDA & cam gear wear was only related to the 05 & 06 models? What do you think about the lack of Zinc/Phosphorus in the oil effecting premature wear in the lifters and OPDA/Cam gears, brought on by excessive drag? I'm trying to understand how it's all related?
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Unread 05-17-2012, 08:04 PM   #3203
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LRod View Post
Your TJ is an O2, I thought the OPDA & cam gear wear was only related to the 05 & 06 models? What do you think about the lack of Zinc/Phosphorus in the oil effecting premature wear in the lifters and OPDA/Cam gears, brought on by excessive drag? I'm trying to understand how it's all related?
Check my sig. I have a 2006 LJ Rubicon as well.

As far as the oil...it certainly isn't helping matters, but there's a certain school of thought that says once a cam/lifters are broken in and have a nice "polished" pattern going, the ZDDP isn't really that critical anymore. I'm not sure if I agree with that stance, so I run the Valvoline VR-1 10W-30 non-synthetic and am pleased with the performance of it.
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Unread 05-17-2012, 08:05 PM   #3204
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Gentlemen,

I have placed my orders for the long lead items and required hardware. Longest lead piece is the replacement lower bushing, looks like it will be 3 and a half weeks out. In the mean time, I will manufacture the various shaft sleeves and spacers myself. I was an apprentice served toolmaker, or maybe I still am, kind of like that whole "once a marine always..." thing. But I digress. For the moment, I'm only making enough parts for 10 units. After some beta testing, and assuming the beta sites perform as expected, I'll see what kind of serious quantities we're talking about. That's all I've got for now.
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Unread 05-17-2012, 09:12 PM   #3205
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I got a letter from my dealer this week asking me to come in for a recall . Lo and behold when I went in it is for the OPDA . I replaced mine last fall , but the dealer thought that Chrysler would reimburse me for the OPDA and any associated labor charges I had receipts for . I will update this once I hear back from Chrysler .
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Unread 05-17-2012, 10:11 PM   #3206
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Quote:
Originally Posted by G Beasley
I got a letter from my dealer this week asking me to come in for a recall . Lo and behold when I went in it is for the OPDA . I replaced mine last fall , but the dealer thought that Chrysler would reimburse me for the OPDA and any associated labor charges I had receipts for . I will update this once I hear back from Chrysler .
What is the campaign number for the recall? Does the letter say anything else?
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Unread 05-18-2012, 06:33 AM   #3207
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The gentleman with the comments about manufacturing issues in the OPDA seem to be on the money for me. I have a friend at Chrysler who tells me they had an issue in 05 when the parts supplier couldn't keep up with the demand leading to a load of gears under-hardened. After looking into this manufacturer on the web, the only interesting thing I found is one of the lead engineers had left there and had his resume online. I noticed it was full of LEAN manufacturing concept training and experience. My guess, as a member of the manufacturing community, I've seen LEAN and I can only imagine the attempts to save time and money led to a pile of under-hardened gears going out the door. Sounds to me like 2 issues working together to wreck our engines. I am also told that the new parts have the gear hardness corrected. I would imagine that it true, so with the addition of the oiler modifications, hopefully we'll be just fine.
I will say this one last thing. Prior to replacing my OPDA, I had noticed a very intermittent idle fluctuation and what seemed to be a dead spot on acceleration right after I shifted gears. I just thought it was the nature of the beast and blew it off. Well, after replacing the OPDA, those issues are gone. I have significantly better power and smoother run. Going by that, I am assuming that the timing was off some from gear wear. This leads me to believe that the proper setting of cam/crank relation with the DRB tool is more important than you think. I would suggest that once all is done, you still pay someone to set it correctly.It also leads me to believe that this condition can be diagnosed a bit sooner than the monkey noise without tearing it down. Now I know what to look for, I hope to see this coming before it gets too bad. I had these driveability conditions for at least 10k miles prior to laughing monkey party under the hood.
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Unread 05-18-2012, 08:05 AM   #3208
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I can't speak for every gear and I'm definitely not defending the gear, but hardness tests were performed early on with earlier model year gears (from a different manufacturer) with the same hardness result.

I want to also mention for clarity, the FogMod is NOT done to fix gear wear. It is to protect from binding, which IMO is the cause of catastrophic gear failure. A gear wearing away at an accelerated pace can cause problems, but to date, there is no sole reason/culprit so there is no current method to fix it. Shaft or gear tolerances, hardening, who knows?

For me, the peace of mind comes with not worrying about seizing. If I pull the OPDA in another 10K and there is more and more gear wear, so be it. For me at least, I know the area that caused my original problem will not happen again.
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Unread 05-18-2012, 08:23 AM   #3209
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TJJP77 View Post
...
As far as the oil...it certainly isn't helping matters, but there's a certain school of thought that says once a cam/lifters are broken in and have a nice "polished" pattern going, the ZDDP isn't really that critical anymore. I'm not sure if I agree with that stance, so I run the Valvoline VR-1 10W-30 non-synthetic and am pleased with the performance of it.
I completely agree. Why not use it?

Also TJJP77, any chance you can track down the cam replacement pics or a link to the separate thread? It may be useful to some and it will be handy to link it on the first page.

EDIT: I found it. The first page is updated under the Q&A Section.
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Unread 05-18-2012, 11:59 AM   #3210
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Well fellas, all I do know is that I'm going to jump on the mod you guys came up with, and reluctantly get rid of my old faithful Castol and hope for the best. I guess a 10k interval is good for checking it. Thanks for all the hard work on this issue!
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