By Shad Ahlstrom
The next morning, I sucked it up and rolled the AW4 to the Jeep.
I cut the heads off and cut some slots in them just in case I
needed a screwdriver to get them out. I put about 2 quarts of transmission
fluid into the torque converter and popped it into the transmission being very
careful to fully seat it in the pump notches. I lined it up and slid it
home. The guide pins screwed right out with my fingertips and the bolts
replaced them. I installed the reverse torx bolts at the top. I had
a few grade 8 bolts to replace those torx bolts with but it was going to be a
tight squeeze no matter what I used. I liked the shoulder on the original
bolts so I just reused them. I secured the back end with a ratchet strap
at about the right height. I reattached the front drive shaft and the
shift cable. I drilled a 1� hole in the firewall for the shifter cable to
pass through. I shoved the grommet in the hole and then attached the TV
cable to the throttle.
I placed the shifter in the hole for the old stick. It
seemed to fit nicely. The shift handle was perfectly centered between the
console and dash. I cut the left side off the shifter plate to give the
4WD lever enough room to squeeze in there somehow. I attached the cable to
the shifter and ran it up and down the gears a few times. It felt pretty
good. I bolted in the starter and hooked up the wires. Next, I
eyeballed the angles of the TC shifter. The XJ lever was too high.
To get it to work, I would have had to mount it REALLY far forward so the angle
wasn't too steep. The TJ relocation bracket I bought posed the same
problem. The angles would have been better but it required the shifter to
be mounted under my AC unit. People without AC can probably get away with
that. I just welded my old AX-15 bracket to the transmission side pivot
from the AW4. The bottom bolt hole didn't line up anymore because of the
re-clocking but it was strong enough with the 2 rear bolts. The angles
were perfect and the 4WD stick was in line with the shifter.
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