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I was fortunate enough to find a project jeep with the T-18 transmission and coveted low first gear. I decided to go for the complete rebuild since it was  out and needed cleaning. Again I opted for the Novack kit. I probably should have done this as a step by step blog with more pictures but hopefully these will help someone.  #1 rule take pictures of everything you take apart before hand. #2 get a professional grade set of snap ring pliers. My CJ re-builders manual and shop manual were invaluable. With these and the Novack instructions I made it through with very few tears. I had done the t-98 on my CJ3-B several years ago so decided to dive in.

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When I opened the case I found things to be in pretty good shape but several years of sitting allowed condensation to spot some things with minor surface rust. My first big challenge was pulling the front bearing which didn't come easy. I about gave up but finally got a very large clam-shell style puller. The snap rings on this transmission are serious business. Safety glasses and a careful approach are required.

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Once I had the main shaft out I knew I was past the point of no return. I was amazed at how heavy this shaft is along with the counter shaft. This requires strong arms to hold steady during re-assembly. I really appreciated the PTO cover being off as it allowed me to hold things in place during re-assembly.

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Once I had everything dissembled I boiled the case in Pro Chem Ferrous Soak. For the aluminum bell housing I used the milder Citrus Soak. I finally found a use for this after doing my Corvair engine.

The needle bearing installation looks intimidating but really is not thanks to sticky grease and the keystone effect holding them in place. By far the most difficult step was working on the 1rst/2nd clutch hub. It has three large ball bearings compressed against strong springs while the sleeve is slipped over. Definitely get some extra helping hands here. Don't be stubborn like me and try to do it alone. The springs will shoot the ball bearings into every dark recess of your shop trust me. My shop manual describes using the 3rd/4th hub as spacer jig on the bench to hold the assembly just right while you simultaneously press all three bearings into place and slip the sleeve over. After about 20 tries and searches for lost ball bearings I was successful. There has got to be a better way. I'll bet they had a slick jig at the factory for this. Sorry no good pictures of this. My hands were full but here is my 3rd /4th  assembly and the 1rst /2nd assembly . Syncros and gears were in great shape. I was happy to get the fresh bearings so I don't regret the time and expense.

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I invested in a shop press since I needed it for some of the assembly. This transmission is a heavy monster. Get help moving into the press.

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Seeing the finished work is rewarding. I'm glad I didn't chicken out because I came real close.

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To finish up I needed to mate it back up to the Dana 20. I was worried about how to do this and not wreck the gasket since things are so heavy. I wound up putting to transfer case on the front of the jeep. Since the grill is off this made a nice bench. I used the hoist to lift the t-18 into place and line things up perfectly. It worked great.

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Everything got a coat of black pain before going back under the jeep.  Final lessens learned. #1 The transfer case shift assembly will not go back on with the bell housing in place. I left it off to make it easier to get under the jeep or so I thought. Don't forget the little spring that connects to the throw-out bearing. It wont go on if the bell housing is on since it hooks internally to the housing. #2 My CJ-7 belly pan has several sets of holes for mounting to various jeep power train configurations. I failed to take note of which ones were used and had a hard time when wrestling with the tranny jack and trying to figure out which ones to use. I got so confused at one point that I was convinced I had the belly pan on backwards. I finally figured it out but should have taken pictures or notes.

 

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Pleased that you have the low compound first gear ratio!  This is a highly desirable gearbox with plenty of stamina for the fresh 4.2L inline six.  Nice work and attention to details, Stuart.  (Your closing paragraph is rife with critical tips, valuable to builders.)  Your effort will deliver for decades!

Thanks for sharing the Pro Chem tip.  Interesting how effectively the solution works.  You "boil" the parts in the solution?   Is heat involved, or is this a cold tank solution?  It does a great job and makes the work inviting...Are you able to reuse the Pro Chem?  Did you pre-clean the case and other parts before the Pro Chem cleaning?

Moses

 

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Moses,

The Pro Chem Ferrous Soak came in Powder form and is high in alkaline content. I filled a 20 gallon metal wash basin from the garden section and added the prescribed amount of powder.  Then I heated it with a propane burner since it is meant to be a hot process. I think 160 degrees to 200 degrees is recommended.   I attached wires to everything I dipped since this stuff is highly caustic it makes getting the parts out easier. You don't want this stuff on your hands. It really goes to work immediately on the grime. I scraped off the big chunks first. It was especially useful when I dipped my intake and exhaust manifolds as it really eats up old rust and all the years of black soot carbon. When done I sprayed  each item with a pressure washer.  The downside as I said is the messy tub of goo afterwards and no its not reusable but it is bio degradable and environmentally friendly they say.  I had gotten this solution from and old engine shop guy who retired and was getting rid of everything. I think this product has been discontinued as I cant find it on the prochem website but they do have several other products similar. It sure did a great job and beat scrubbing for hours. 

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Very interesting, Stuart...I have a commercial washing cabinet and am always concerned about DIY  home garage practices.  You're basically getting the same cleaning job done as me, although your clean-up takes a few more steps and follow-up chores.  The T18 castings and gears look terrific after cleaning!  Your propane "cooker" seems to do the trick, very innovative, you can even barbecue afterward to celebrate how clean the parts look...Cleaned parts look like they came from a cabinet washer!

I'm using a commercial wash cabinet with a solution that lasts a long time.  When the solution is no longer active, I have a commercial company pump the tank.  If left dormant long enough, the water evaporates, and I can scrape the dehydrated cleaner/residue from the floor of the cabinet and simply vacuum it up with my Ridgid 1450 shop vacuum.  I then pour another round of Goodson washer cabinet soap into fresh water.  The system is approximately 53-55 gallon capacity.  Some users claim these cabinets are more effective once dirty grease and petroleum products dissolve into the solution.

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I bought my Walker (no longer in production) washer cabinet new in the mid-'nineties for our larger shop;  this machine has paid for itself many times over.  The rotating table can support 1,000-pounds (a Cummins engine block, etc.).  The table turns slowly while 45 psi nozzles spray heated soluble cleaner from all angles.  I use a perforated metal basket for smaller parts, and all parts clean up well.

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The Walker machine was designed for automotive machine shops.  The washer requires 220V (single-phase) for the 2 h.p. high volume pump, two 4500W heating elements and the rotating table.  The tank heats to 140-160-degrees F, and I get away with a setting of 140-145 degrees F.  The Goodson Tools PJS-50 non-caustic cabinet soap works very well for iron castings and aluminum.  This cleaner is an anti-foaming formula.  (Commercial pumping is needed for the toxic debris that comes from dirty parts and castings.  The pumping cost is unnecessary when I can allow the tank to evaporate naturally then scrape the settled debris and pick it up from the dry tank with the bag-lined shop vacuum.) 

After a timer cleaning cycle, I crack the door open;  all hot parts, castings, etc., will flash dry and not rust.  This machine is a keeper, like my 120 gallon compressed air system.  I moved the heavy washer cabinet into my smaller 580 sq.ft. studio/garage in 2009 and bought this used 23-CFM Air Boy compressor with a horizontal tank during the Great Recession:

https://www.4wdmechanix.com/Downsizing-and-Air-Compressors?r=1

If you do any volume of parts cleaning, these washing cabinets do come up in used form during shop liquidations and at tool auctions.  Like the compressor, the mechanical condition is critical;  there are expensive components that can wear beyond repair.  At last year's SEMA Show, CRC showed the SmartWasher®, a washing basin and cleaning solution that will be very popular for "green" shops.  See the video [go to 13:13 minutes] for details:  https://www.4wdmechanix.com/2018-sema-show-new-products/.

Moses

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Wow! I can relate to your story about the compressor. If I do any more of this restoration work I'm moving in next door. 🙂I need to finish this jeep so I can get back to my airplane project.

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Stuart...It's all about air volume...The Ingersoll-Rand Garage Mate is great for light air tools, HVLP painting and tire service.  It hit the wall, however, when  used with the blasting cabinet.  Blasting takes a large volume of air and requires a big air tank.  At that, even the Air Boy 23 CFM compressor will run intermittently while blasting, which is really a lot of air.  The 23 cfm Champion compressor is a beast, so the bead blasting never slows down, even when the compressor is running.  I regulate the tank pressure between 125 PSI and 150 PSI, the line pressure is 90-100 PSI.

The body shop where this compressor resided for years actually had two large air tanks, the one that came with the compressor and a second tank also filled by this compressor.  They had an automatic drain on the compressor and system, which dramatically reduces the risk of the tank(s) rusting out.  On that note, I put a Harbor Freight drain on the I-R Garage Mate and need to do something similar (commercial grade) on this 120 gallon tank.

I consider myself lucky to have found a big shop grade compressor in good condition.  It was used plenty, but not abused, and serviced regularly.  There are rebuild kits available for these iron Champion compressor units.  If you could find a similar unit, you'd have a lifetime system.  Mine is single phase 5 H.P. with a magnetic starter (clunk, clunk!). 

There are alternatives like the two-stage (not twin-stage) DeVilbiss  iron upright unit that I used for years.  It had a 230V single phase capacitor start motor and enough CFM for bead blasting;  however, it ran at a much higher rpm.  That DeVilbiss consumer unit never gave trouble despite rumors that they suck reed valves.  I bought the DeVilbiss at Costco in the mid-'nineties for around $800, a bargain in hindsight!

Moses

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