with Randy Gobleck
2WD Low TC
How to set up a transfer case for 2WD-Low
There are two steel rods (a High-Low rod and a 2WD-4WD rod) that control the shifter forks for 2WD-4WD and High-Neutral-Low. Between those two steel rods that control the forks there are three ” diameter balls and two springs. On one side of the High-Low rod are three indentations that give the ?click? feeling as you shift from 4WD-Neutral to 4WD-Low. On the other side of the High-Low rod is an indentation that prevents this rod from moving until the 2WD-4WD rod is shifted into 4WD. The High-Low rod is the one you feel while on the right side of the shift pattern.
On the 2WD-4WD rod there is a matching indentation that the center ball (between the two rods) falls into as you shift into 4WD, thus freeing the High-Low rod to move. Making the change only requires removing the center ball between the two rods. Of course getting to that ball isn?t so simple. You?ll need to remove all three drive shafts and three mounting nuts, drop the t-case, and remove the front and main covers. When you?ve gotten that far, removing that center ball will seem very simple.
After the modification, here?s what actually happens as you shift:
- When you shift back to 4WD-High you move the right rod (2WD-4WD fork) forward which engages the front wheels.
- Then you get into the middle of the bottom of the ?J? pattern and shift forward. This moves both rods (& forks) backward. This puts the right fork (2WD-4WD) back where it was before the 1st move and disengages the front wheels, putting you in 2WD. This also puts the left rod (High-Neutral-Low) in its middle position, which is neutral.
- Then you push the shifter to the right, which grabs only the left rod (High-Neutral-Low fork). When you push the shifter forward into the low position (this is the top of the standard ?J? pattern), it moves the left fork backwards as far as it can go, into its 3rd position, which is low gear. You end up in 2WD low because the 2WD-4WD fork was left in the 2WD position by step number 2.
OK, I can feel your eyes glazing over as I type this, so let?s try some pictures:
Standard ?J? shift pattern
Starting at A, shift down to 4WD-High, B. Anywhere from B-D is 4WD-High. From D up to E, Neutral and then to F, 4WD-Low. This is the standard ?J? pattern as displayed on the knob.
Note: With this pattern displayed on the knob and the transfer case in pattern #4 (below) a thief would be hard-pressed to figure out why the vehicle wouldn?t move. (Call me if you don?t get why. Words and pictures can only explain so much.)
New available shift pattern to get to 2WD-Low
From A shift down to B, 4WD-High. Then feel for the middle of B-D and shift up at C. At the top, G is slightly to the right. This is 2WD-Neutral. The front wheel drive fork has been disengaged and the High-Low fork is in Neutral. Slide over to E and then up to F for 2WD-Low. 2WD-High is quickly available by pulling straight down to D if needed in a hurry. But you will not be able to return to the normal shift pattern until you go back via E, G, C.
Actual part of the new shift pattern that you want to use
Another possible pattern after in 2WD-Low
If when coming out of 2WD-Low, F, and then shifting across in Neutral, E, you go all the way over to A to the original 2WD-High spot, without going down to 4WD-High area via G, C, A, you?ll end up with 2WD-Neutral and 4WD-Neutral along the left side. You?ve left the High-Low fork in Neutral once you returned to A and are then just shifting the front wheel drive fork in and out while in Neutral. You have to go back via A, G, C, to get back to the Standard ?J? pattern.
Note: If you leave it at A a thief probably wouldn?t be able to figure out why the wheels don?t go. They might be able to figure out how to get to E. But they will definitely be confused based on the pattern displayed on the knob. You have to know G is there to kinda feel for it, otherwise it slips right by without a hint. Let?s say the thief does figure out how to go across to E they?d still be in Neutral. Lets say they even figure out how to go up to F, which is still 4WD-Low, they couldn?t go very fast if you had a Rock Lobster installed; giving a top speed of 12-14 mph. Kind of a neat anti-theft device.