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Old 12-17-2017, 08:32 PM   #1
zach.benton
 
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Default Lurching/'Clunk' While in 4 High

I recently got a 1991 D21 4cyl 4X4. With weather getting bad, I've started driving with 4X4. I noticed there's a decent little lurch or 'clunk' noise as i'm driving. It happens even when driving straight and happens maybe every 30 seconds or so but not consistently. Seams to do it more when under a load. Thought maybe a front drive shaft or u-joint problem but then I put it in 4 Low and it went away. I'm assuming this would reduce it to be a problem in the transfer case? If so, what kind of things gone wrong in there would do that? Sounds like somethings like out of sync or a tooth missing on a gear or something. Not super familiar with how the TC works. Thanks!
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Old 12-18-2017, 01:59 AM   #2
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I'm having the same problem in my v6 have you figured anything out yet?
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Old 12-18-2017, 03:44 PM   #3
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It could be a worn "stretched" chain that is jumping. Here's an article I wrote on the subject years ago:

http://mississippi-mud.com/Thread-Re...fer-case-chain
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Old 12-19-2017, 01:20 AM   #4
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Awesome. Very helpful to see those pictures and that chain. What do you think that would mean if it only was doing it in 4 high? Are the gears different sizes between high and low to where the chain would have more slack in high? Gonna have to find some time to open it up and check it out. For now just gonna stay in 2wd or 4 low if needed. Thanks for the post, helps a lot.
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Old 12-19-2017, 06:46 PM   #5
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Mine was really bad. It made noise under load. If you are driving on the road in 4HI and there is a difference in your tire diameter, one axle will gain on the other until the chain is in a bind. At that point, a tire has to slip, or the chain will jump a tooth, depending on how much traction the tires have.
Maybe it;s not doing it in 2LO because you are on dirt? Tires are able to slip before putting the chain in a bind?
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Old 12-22-2017, 07:06 PM   #6
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Interesting. Thanks for your input. I have brand new tires but they are pretty aggressive tread. I've been driving in snow a lot but when I tested the 4LO, I was on pavement so I know the tires weren't slipping. One question I have is where does the gear change from Lo to Hi? The transfer case just engages power to the front drive line right? The hi lo shifting must happen in the main transmission to effect both front and rear right? If that's the case, could there be an issue with only a gear in the 'Hi' part of the drivetrain?
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Old 12-22-2017, 07:22 PM   #7
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Hi lo change is in the transfer case. It sits after the tranny so it can modify the output of the tranny. The output of the tranny goes to the t case that then splits it front and rear. In 2wd the front is in neutral in the t case. In N in the t case everything is in neutral no matter what gear you are in in the tranny.
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Old 12-22-2017, 09:45 PM   #8
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Normal driving is in 2HI. Pull back one notch, and you are in 4HI.
Push down, and pull back one more and that puts the t-case in neutral. Great for being towed, if you have an auto transmission, but otherwise useless.
pull back one MORE time, and you are in 4LO, which reduces all gearing 2:1
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Old 12-23-2017, 02:29 AM   #9
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Ok, gotcha. Just trying to find out where things happen mechanically to try to narrow down where my problem will be coming from being that it does it in only 4HI. I suppose I will need to check the transfer case out at some point as that seams to be where most of the stuff is happening like you guys are saying. If it is like the chain jumping a tooth or something out of sync to make it do that lurching every so often, think it's pretty bad to drive with it like that?
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Old 12-26-2017, 12:25 AM   #10
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Hard to say. Mine was pretty bad when I go it. So the PO must have driven it that way for a while. I changed the chain only, and it was good to go.

Now I'm not saying that that is the cause of your noise. That is something you will have to verify. I walked along next to mine while someone drove it in 4Lo and I was able to tell where the noise was coming from. It's one of those sounds that seems like it is coming from everywhere. Very evasive.
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