Question: I have a question that I've been exhaustively searching to answer. And the answer seems simple enough, but it is nowhere to be found. How much does the fully assembled 4.2L 258 inline-six weigh? I have been searching the Web and all of my reference manuals on Jeeps and cannot find the answer. Can you guys, the masters of all four-wheeling knowledge, please end my exhaustive search?
Answer: Wow, I wish all my questions were so easy to answer. The 4.2L/258ci engine weighs in at 525 pounds-and just for your information, the 4.0L version is about 415 pounds.
Why is the 4.0 so much lighter, you're going to ask next? Because of the extensive use of better casting methods, aluminum components, and the stainless steel exhaust manifold.
Question: I have an '89 Dodge 1-ton Cummins 4x4 with power steering. The steering seems OK sometimes, but after a 90-degree turn, the steering doesn't seem to stay on center. Sometimes it pulls left, sometimes it pulls right, and I can't do anything except overcorrect. Any ideas on what I need to do to fix this?
Answer: The first place I would look is at the steering coupler. This is a pretty common complaint among Dodge owners. In fact, Dodge has a couple of TSBs about it. Borgeson (860/482-8283, www.borgeson.com) has even made up a special high-strength coupler and shaft. They come in three models: one for the '79-'93 Dodge that uses the factory "rag" joint at the steering box, or one that eliminates the rag joint, and another for the '94-to-present trucks.
Next thing on my list to check would be the condition of the front wheel bearings. Jack up the truck so a tire is off the ground and grab the top of the tire and see if you can move it back and forth. There really shouldn't be any movement. If there is, then it is something that should be addressed.
While you're at it, see if there is any side-to-side slack in the tie-rod ends as you move the tire in and out. While these are not positive tests for wear, they are a pretty good indicator. It doesn't take a whole lot of wear in steering components to stack up and cause the problems you're encountering.
Oh, and while you're looking things over, make sure that the mounting bolts that hold the steering box to the frame haven't loosened up.
Question: I have a '67 Chevy Suburban 4x4. It has a straight body and is in generally good condition for its age. Unfortunately, it has a manual three-speed transmission that leaks oil faster than I can pump it in. The column shifter has expired, and someone has put in a cheap floor shifter that tries to select two gears at once.
I want to replace my three-speed with a granny four-speed. Which transmissions (make/model) will fit without an aftermarket adapter? Will the factory transfer-case adapter from the three-speed work with a 4x2 four-speed?
The truck also has manual steering and needs power steering bad. The steering box is quite worn. Please suggest an available power box that will fit with minimal adapting. Being a retired geezer, I need to do this as cheap as possible.
Answer: It seems, if memory serves me right, that the three-speed is hooked up to a Dana 20 transfer case. The four-speed at that time could have been either a rare NP435 or a more standard GM 425, and was most likely connected to a Rockwell T-221 transfer case.
Either way, the three-speed adapter will not work. While you could bolt in one of these early 425/T-221 combinations to your present engine, I would not recommend it. The transfer cases suffer from a transmission-to-transfer-case coupler wear problem, and the 425 shifts like, well, an old truck trans--and parts are getting hard to locate.
Your best bet would be to swap in a complete trans and transfer case such as the SM465/NP205 combination from a '69-'79 GM truck or a '74-'75 SM465/NP203 full-time unit. Plan on changes in driveshaft length.
As to the power steering, nothing is going to bolt directly up, or even come close to it. Your best bet is to look at a later-model Chevy truck and adapt the steering system. You're going to have to build your own mounting plates on the frame. Make sure that the pump that you pick has mounting brackets that will bolt up to your cylinder head, as there have been some changes in where the holes are drilled in the front of the head.