Beginning a few months ago, I started noticing some problems shifting gears (particularly into first—which had never been easy without double-clutching—and reverse) and with tell-tale sounds coming from the throw-out bearing and pilot bushing. Eventually, it got to the point where shifting was nearly impossible—couldn't get it into gear, couldn't get it out of gear, grinding at every shift, creeping forward while the clutch was engaged, etc. I nursed it along, adjusting the clutch until there was no room left for more, sacrificing the throw-out bearing completely by riding the clutch to ease gear changes—anything I could do to postpone the inevitable. But the time had to come for a clutch replacement, and so it did.
Gathering up the tools, recruiting a neighbor to help with the heavy stuff, and taking a couple days off from work, I got to work. First order of business was ordering a new clutch kit from the local Napa Auto Parts. I called on a Friday afternoon and the kit was waiting for me at 8AM the next morning. $132 plus tax. I also bought a gallon of 90 weight GL4 gear oil (GL4, not GL5 which doesn't play well with some parts of the transmission), a little hand pump to get the oil in faster, and some stuff to help wash off the years of accumulated grease and crud on the transmission and transfer case.
Along the way, I took pictures to help document things. Some are a bit foggy because there was so much grease and dirt on my hands it got on the lens of the iPhone! My arms were, literally, black up to my elbows by the time I was done.
First order of business is to drop the skid plate which also acts as the cross-member supporting the transmission. It is attached to the frame by three bolts on either side. But first, one must disconnect the torque dampener that's also attached directly to the bottom of the transmission. Two bolts and one nut.
First, dropped the skid plate. Known in Jeeping circles as the "shovel" due to its propensity for picking up dirt. Mine was relatively clean! Weighs about 30 pounds.
Now, drain the oil from your transmission and transfer case. There's not that much, and it doesn't weigh very much, but it's easier to drain into a pan while they are still mounted. Also note: if you have a T-150 attached to a Dana 20 like I do, you'll find that one of the lower bolts attaching the transfer case to the transmission actually runs into the transmission such that if there's any oil in it it will drain through the hole when you remove the bolt. Don't be surprised if this happens even if you've already drained the oil. There will still be *some* in there. Mostly, I suggest just dropping the two together as one unit.
Time to drop the transmission and transfer case. Here's where a friend comes in handy. We quickly found that it was such a pain to separate the transfer case from the transmission while in-place that it was better to leave them connected and drop them both together. So that's what we did. Knowing we had about twice the weight to deal with, we decided to help ourselves by wrapping a strap around the transmission coming down through the floor of the tub and leading up and around a 2x4 laid length-wise from the base of the windshield back to the rear of the tub. Made lowering the two much easier and more controlled. The floor jack supported the pair at the transfer case and my wife used it to control moving the assembly backwards so the input shaft would clear the bell-housing. Then down they came...
Once they were down, we shifted them both out of the way. Much easier to work on the bell-housing with them cleared away. Hint: to make it easier to maneuver the assembly, remove the torque-dampener from the bottom of the transmission before dropping them. I didn't and found that the one bolt that is part of the dampener acted as a sort of spear—sticking into everything we tried to move the assembly over, ground, cracks in the pavement, wagon I put 'em on to wash them, etc.
Perhaps this is the culprit? Look at the throw-out bearing. That ain't right.