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Discussion Starter #1
On Gen II 4x4 Frontier - what and where does the 4x4 dial engage? I'm trying to determine if my front drive shaft is always spinning, even in 2WD.
 

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Yup, it is always spinning. The Tcase is what engages the 4wd, not the diff.

This is what has been reported by others. This is also why 4wd owners need to check both the front and rear DSs when checking for U-joint play.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks. That's what I thought, but wanted to confirm.

Took my truck to the dealer for a new timing chain and their "inspection" revealed a loose front drive shaft. Looking like an expensive maintenance visit this time around. Trying not to be too pissed about it. Seems I've had a lot of problems with this supposedly reliable vehicle. Wasn't a big deal until I passed warranty mileage.

Rear shaft is already replaced. Why can't they just replace the u-joints like a normal vehicle?

I asked the question about front shaft because I am hoping this solves a vibration I am experiencing at 50+mph (not related to tire balance or alignment).
 

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Thanks. That's what I thought, but wanted to confirm.

Took my truck to the dealer for a new timing chain and their "inspection" revealed a loose front drive shaft. Looking like an expensive maintenance visit this time around. Trying not to be too pissed about it. Seems I've had a lot of problems with this supposedly reliable vehicle. Wasn't a big deal until I passed warranty mileage.

Rear shaft is already replaced. Why can't they just replace the u-joints like a normal vehicle?

I asked the question about front shaft because I am hoping this solves a vibration I am experiencing at 50+mph (not related to tire balance or alignment).
The issue with just replacing the U-joints is that not all techs are qualified to do it and will just screw up with flanges. This is why most dealerships just replace the entire DS. You can do the U-joints yourself if you are handy thou. You just need a vise or c-clamps, a BFH (Big Fing Hammer) and a bunch of sockets to use as a punch. Just beware, Aluminum shafts are harder to work on since they can be gouged easier then steel ones.

Also, if you do it yourself or have a local mechanic do the U-joints, you can have them used greasible ones with zerks so they don't wear out as easy as the sealed OEM ones.

Just make sure they install the zerk so that it is in compression and not tension, basically make sure it isn't oriented so that it will help cause the U-joint to crack.
 

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pretty much any 4wd without manual locking hubs is the same way....axles and front driveshaft always spinning.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the input on ujoints. I've done a handful myself, but only the more "common" variety on old Mustangs and Broncos.

Do our UJoints have a standard part number (Dana/Spicer part you can pick up a NAPA), or is it a proprietary dealer-only thing?

I'm kind of old-school and I hate to go 4 wheeling without spares.
 

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The U-joints have been reported to be standard. Most say they pick them up at NAPA and they make sure to get the ones with zerks so they can grease them.

Also, having spares doesn't make you old school (well it does) but it does make you smart.
 
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