General Tarfun's X

General_Tarfun Aug 1, 2019

  1. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    General Tarfun’s X

    I'm the original owner of this 2006 Super Black Nissan Xterra S.

    Username: General_Tarfun
    Year: 2006
    Model: Xterra
    Trim: S
    Color: Super Black

    Factory Options:
    • Auto-dim/compass mirror
    • Tow Package
    • Rear cargo privacy cover
    • Side Molding
    • Mud Flaps (removed)
    • Step Rails (removed)
    • Hood Wind Deflector (removed)
    • Wheel Locks (removed)

    Suspension/Steering Mods

    Front:
    Lift Amount: 4"
    • Bilstein 5100's set at 1" lift + 2" Lift Spacer
    • SPC Upper Control Arms
    • Moog Coil Springs
    • KYB Top Plate/Coil Bushing
    • PRG Delrin Rack and Pinion Mount Bushings
    • Delrin LCA Washers
    • Extended Poly Bump Stops
    • Nissan Camber Bolts
    • Nissan Lower Control Arms
    • Sway bar delete
    • Hitachi Outer Tie Rods
    • OE Nissan Inner Tie Rods

    Rear:
    Lift Amount: 4"
    • Bilstein 5125's, +3" lift extended version
    • 4x4parts 3-Leaf Add-A-Leaf
    • 4x4parts.com 1.5" Lift Shackles
    • Timbren SES Bump Stop

    Wheels/Brakes
    • 265/75R-16 Toyo Open Country AT II’s
    • Spidertrax 1.5" Wheel Spacers Front + Rear
    • Front: Akebono 1094 Pads + CarQuest Rotors
    • Rear: Akebono ASP1101A Pads + Raysbestos 980368FZN Rotors

    Electrical
    • Philips Ultinon LED Foglight Bulbs
    • Hella 80/100 watt 9007 Halogen Headlight Bulbs
    • 18" Lightbar
    • Dual LED pod floodlights
    • Sylvania LED rear brake lights
    • Sidemarker to Turn Signal mod
    • Rear facing LED lightbar mounted on roof rack
    • Front Turn Signal Switchback LED Mod
    • Rear Turn Signal LED Mod
    • Centralized Load Resistor Heatsink for LED Mod
    • Off-Road Mode Switch (ABS/EBD/VDC/TCS Disable)
    • Fogs + High Beams mod
    • Front side marker conversion to turn signal mod
    • Custom 12-gauge wire relay harness for front headlamps + 80 watt low/100 watt high Halogens
    • Westin License Plate Bulb Housing Replacement Kit (for 05-07 Xterra bumpers)

    Interior:
    • Pioneer AVH8500BHS + back up camera
    • UV film applied to windshield @20k
    • All other windows tinted 30% over the stock tint
    • Floor/Underdash/Console led lighting
    • Center Console Compartment Light mod
    • Rear Cupholder led light mod
    • Dash/Interior LED Mod
    • Rex Rug cargo area
    • Noico Sound-proofing applied to the interior of all doors
    • Fabricated 4 additional tie downs to cargo floor panel
    • Memory foam seat mod
    • Painted A pillars + handles with Satin Black

    Exterior Mods
    • Rear diff breather mod
    • Painted front bumper, side molding, rear bumper corners, and roof rack with Mar-Hyde Black Satin bumper paint
    • Painted rear bumper metal with Automotive Touchup KH3 Super Black matching paint
    • Bedlined Rear bumper plastic top
    • Painted grille with Krylon Fusion Textured Shimmer Dark Grey
    • Blacked out all the badges with Black Satin paint + Automotive Touchup clear coat
    • Airbox Mod
    • Stealth headlight housing mod, painted trim with matching KH3 Super Black matching paint + clearcoat, deleted the orange sidemarker

    Fluids
    • Only Mobil 1 Synthetic 5w-30/5w-40(summer) from the first oil change onward + Nissan Oil Filters
    • Matic S until 150k and Castrol Transmax Import Multi-Vehicle ATF onward
    • Mobil 1 Synthetic Gear Oil for Rear Diff
    • Nissan 'Green' Radiator fluid

    Major Repairs
    • Timing Chains/Guides Replacement + thermostat + waterpump @147,000 miles, $1700.






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    Last edited: Oct 16, 2019 at 3:30 PM
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  2. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    Mar 7, 2018 (Build Thread Reconstruction)
    I assembled new front coilovers and bought the Bilstein 5125's for a 3" lift to put on the rear. Set the fronts to 1" lift but somehow ended up with a 2", combined with the 2" lift spacer on top the front was at 37" fender height. I put in polyurethane low profile bump stops on the UCA's and another regular bump stop on the LCA. The ride is great now, I removed the rear sway bar too and the ride is much more planted without it.

    It's settled some in the last week down to 36.5" and I'd be happy if it dropped another 1/2."

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    I had to build the lower mount bushings myself and it's pretty easy to do. The old ones press out really easily, I pressed in the new polyurethane ones that have a .75" eye. I ended up with red bushings since that's all that was available on Prime. Would have preferred black but you can't really see them anyway so I'll live.

    I ordered a 12 inch section of tube from onlinemetals which has a location here in Ga just outside Atlanta. I signed up for an account and didn't do the order for a few days and I got an email from them for free shipping so I ordered in the afternoon and it was delivered by UPS the next day. After that I measured the pipe to a 1.65" length and wrapped a tie wrap around it to mark the cut point and sawed two of those off. I cleaned up the edges and applied some silicon based grease and pressed them into the bushings and they fit the stockc bolts/mounts perfectly.


    Mar 8, 2018
    Installed a double layer of 50 Mil Noico sound deadening mat on the inner side of all the doors. I cleaned the surface up with acetone and the mat stuck to it like glue.

    The doors feel slightly heavier now (not a bad thing) and they close with a nice thud instead of the hollow ringing I was getting before. Road noise is definitely reduced although I don't have a decibel measurement or anything. It's funny now because I notice sounds coming from other areas that I didn't notice before so I'll tackle those next.

    Nissan actually installed very tiny amounts of a similar sound deadening mat inside our doors but its not nearly enough, I covered the entire door and checked it for clearance with no issues. I also spray some white lithium grease on the power window track while I was in there and now my windows power up/down nicely again.

    Mar 27, 2018
    So the front suspension hasn't sagged. It will drop 1/4" depending on the slope of where it's parked. After talking with Greg at PRG about everything he steered me towards the SPC UCA's since I don't want to lower the front or rear any. The coil bucket contact has been ridiculous and makes driving a pretty rough experience since the front wheels can't drop more than an inch.

    Just got the SPC's in the mail today so they are going in tonight! I picked up a 32mm socket at Lowe's this morning and some Valvoline Moly-Fortified Multi-Purpose Grease. Part# VV633 from Napa along with grease gun.

    My final front suspension setup will be this:

    Bilstein 5100 set to 1" lift
    Moog coil springs
    KYB top plate and coil bushing
    2" lift spacer
    SPC Upper Control Arms

    Final ride height is 37"

    Tomorrow I'm putting in a Hellwig LP-15 (I think, I'm not sure if it will fit but I'm going to try so we'll have another option besides the 550's) which I think will lift the rear maybe a 3/4" so I'll get a little bit of rake back. Next job won't be as much fun! Valve Cover Gaskets...

    Mar 29, 2018
    Got the Hellwig LP-15's installed last night! Ride height on rear is 37.75.

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    Apr 5, 2018 I finally cleaned up my light bar wiring last night, I removed all of the old wires that were unprotected and installed new lines through a mesh sleeve. It looks so much better than before with red wires running all over the place. I pulled the firewall wiring plug and made a small incision for the wire to pass through to my switch panel and ran the wires through that. Before I just had the wires pushed through the side of it which left the plug unseated and was supposed to be temporary but it took me like a year to get back in there and do it right.
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    While I was there with the hood open I decided to finally do the VIAS TSB too. I bought the epoxy over a year ago and just never got around to doing it but it's super easy. All you need to get the 4 torx head bolts out is a medium bit flat head long handled screwdriver. Huge difference in noise while driving now, I must have been used to that rattling all the time. You're supposed to clean the valve with carb cleaner beforehand but since I was doing the job on a whim of course I didn't have any so I just went without. If it doesn't hold it's easy enough to take off again anyway.

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    May 15, 2018
    I replaced two of my Moog cam bolts that the alignment shop had rounded out. I wanted an OEM set but the price is a bit high for what's basically a bolt with a notch in it so I wanted to see if I could find a good alternative that isn't the cheapo half bolt style.

    I came up with a good solution. I bought the OEM cam washer from Nissan, reused the nut from my stock LCA bolts, and bought a Febest 0229-004 alignment bolt. I wasn't sure if the bolt would work but it's an exact match with the other hardware. I would say that they might be an OEM supplier but the bolt head is different from the Nissan one but they at least used the Nissan bolt as a guide which is nice, I feel a lot better having a solid bolt in my LCA's again.

    ***Update: Things are cheaper for a reason, I haven't had any major problems with these bolts but on one of them the bolt side washer started to cave in into a bowl shape from the torque. Also the threads on one of them have started to get thin from the pressure of the nut being torqued down. This happened at over 100 ft/lbs, I went over the recommended torque because of my old control arm bushings slipping and I was trying to stop it. I'm replacing both of these with a set of Nissan bolts.

    Febest 0229-004: $6.99
    Nissan 545591Z600: $6.15
    Nissan Nut: $0
    Total:$13.14 each

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    May 17, 2018
    I'm getting ready for one of those necessary projects that I don't really want to do or pay for, the dreaded rubber coolant hose replacements. The mains are fine, I had the dealer change those when the timing chain job was done so this is basically everything else. Nissan hoses are pretty bulletproof in my experience so hopefully this will give me another 150k of no split hoses. Here's what I've ordered so far:

    • Valve Cover to Valve Cover Hose. Part #11826EA200.

    • Brake Booster Hose. Part #47474-EA000.
    ^Clamps for above x2. Part #16439-17B0A. Nissan says to replace the clamps too and since brakes are important I'll spend the extra 2 bucks without complaining too much.

    • Brake Booster Check Valve. Part #47478-AX600.

    • Coolant Bypass Hose (front of engine). Part #14055-EA200.

    • Cam Solenoid gasket. Part #23797ZA000. When I replaced the valve cover gaskets I saw that it was was super brittle and although I didn't damage it I'm going to go back in and replace it anyway to prevent any more oil leaks.

    • Heater Core to Reservoir Tank hose part 1. Part #21744EA000.
    Heater Core to Reservoir Tank hose part 2. Part #21741EA000. These two are part of the same line that runs from the reservoir tank to the heater core. It runs under the fuse box and some other stuff so it should be fun to replace.


    May 18, 2018

    Last night I finally decided to tackle painting the metal center rear bumper. I've had the paint for a while, I bought everything from Automotive Touchup a while ago to repaint part of my front door that was chipping. That turned out great and I had a lot of paint left over so I wanted to use on the bumper since it faded into a greenish-grey mess. About a month ago I bedlined the plastic trim that goes on top of it and this matches it pretty well. Now I just need to buff the clear into a nice shine but here are some pics from a few minutes after the last coat.

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    May 18, 2018 A dusty pic of just the bed-lined plastic bumper trim. This piece had some heavy oxidation so it took a decent amount of sanding to get it ready for the primer. I used some Rustoleum difficult surface or something primer along with their rattle can bed-liner. The texture is really nice, I was impressed with how it came out.

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    Last edited: Sep 6, 2019
    TerryD and Fromfrontier2Xterra like this.
  3. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    Jun 6, 2018

    I've been busy on a few things lately, I pulled the secondary cats to get a look at those plus the primaries and make sure they were ok. All of them were fine, color is good and the honeycomb looked good. Only thing I noticed is on the passenger side the primary had two of the passages blocked? Hard to tell, there was a small white thing in them but it looked like it had always been there so I'm not sure if it matters.

    Wrapped up the front end suspension work this morning with an alignment and tire balance at the dealer. Picked up bunch of body panel clips (30 cents each) and 2 o-rings for the passenger side camshaft and crankshaft position sensors while I was there.
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    Feb 11, 2019
    Installed the fog light mod last night to make the stalk live anytime. I ordered a relay so I can alter it to be controlled by the auto power off feature so I don't accidentally kill the battery with it. I'm still getting a slight oil burn smell and it's been a month since I did the valve cover gaskets so I put it on the lift to take a look and found drops of oil on the driver side exhaust manifold. I needed to get a better view so I pulled out the fender liner and tried to unbolt the heat shield. All of the bolts broke so I just removed the shield entirely and cleaned everything up with some brake cleaner. After driving it a bit I'm going to go back and see if it's easier to spot where it's coming from.
    love getting parts in and today everything arrived for the new upgraded harness assembly so I know what I'm working on this week after work.

    I calculated everything out and my headlights as is on the factory harness are getting a voltage drop of 6.45% on the high beam and 5.43% on the low beam (I'm running them on low only for now). With the new 12 gauge wiring in place the voltage drop should be barely over 1 percent right where I want it. The new sockets are solid ceramic and should dissipate heat nicely. Now I just need to decide if I want to do a 4 relay or 2 relay setup...

    Feb 14, 2019
    So I've had to make a couple changes from my original plan so far. The first one was I realized that I don't actually need two of the 9007 male connectors because both relays are on one side right next to each other. Relay #1 is low beam and Relay #2 is high beam so I plan on capping the factory harness plug on the drivers side since it will be unused.

    The next change of plan is with the ceramic sockets + terminals. Originally I liked the idea of assembling those myself but once I had them together I really didn't like how the terminals fit. First off they barely would go inside the ceramic sockets and the next part I didn't like is compared the factory terminal style these are just a generic flat rectangle. It would probably be ok but the bulb terminals wouldn't be in contact with the harness as tight as I'd like and being that I'm running high wattage bulbs I don't want to create a concentration of heat at the bulb socket. With the change of plan I located a small shop in Arizona that sells the 9007 sockets with 12 gauge pigtails already attached with a quality factory style terminal so I ordered 2.

    I found some extra wiring in my collection of spare wire that I can use to get power to the relays, a 4 gauge copper wire that runs to a splitter with two 10 gauge wires coming out so I updated my design to incorporate that.

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    Feb 19, 2019
    While I was testing out the new harness with the truck off I ended up killing my battery (4 1/2 year old Duracell), the truck immediately started off my jumper pack and the battery took a charge fine but I decided to replace it anyway because of age. I'll try to get some pics of the road coverage once the weather gets a little better here but in the meantime below is a comparison pic from the old (left) Philips X-treme Vision to the new (right) Hella Optilux 85/100's. I finally have the white headlight color I've been after for years.

    I adjusted the beams a few times to get it right but overall I had to lower the beam angle some because with the better output the road illumination is much better defined. Before I had them higher because with the weak output I just couldn't see down the road much but with these that's no longer an issue plus there's no extra glare coming off of them. Couldn't be happier with this setup.


    Mar 1 2019

    With my headlights how i want them now I've making some other lighting changes. I read through a pretty lengthy post on another forum about better reverse lights for 921 connector housings. The LED options are all pretty weak when it comes to actual lumen output but the stock halogens aren't great either.

    What I ended up going with was a 12v landscaping bulb that is an IR Halogen ( the infrared heat coming from the bulb filament is redirected right back on the filament, causing it to burn hotter and brighter while still using the same amount of electricity). The result is a brighter light that renders color accurately and within the full spectrum of what our eyes can actually see.

    The stock halogens are 264 lumens/bulb and these IR Halogens are 850 lumens/bulb. The output is insanely better than what I had before. The bulbs use pins instead of a clip to insert into the bulb socket so to make them work just take a small screwdriver and bend the socket clips until they touch and then the bulb will securely go in.
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    Mar 9, 2019

    Long day but got a lot done, installed a new 3 leaf AAL and removed the single Deaver that I put in a few years ago. Man that was a battle, both of the leaf alignment bolts had the nut freeze halfway off and then the head strip out. I ended up just grinding them off since they were being replaced anyway. The ride quality is awesome, much less harsh than the single AAL + helper spring was.

    By the time I got all that done I still had some sunlight left so I knocked out replacing both of the engine mounts, they were both original and have needed replacement for a long time now so I was glad to get that done. Both were ripped and had no fluid left in them and they were so loose I could just push them around. Made a huge difference while driving, everything feels much smoother on the road. Engine mounts are really easy to replace on the X which was nice for a change.

    By the time I finished this up it was dark so I skipped the rack bushings I was going to do and just replaced the sway bar mount bushings instead. Weird thing was they were both swollen compared to the new ones.
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    Last edited: Aug 2, 2019
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  4. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    Mar 14, 2019
    I finally tracked down the replacement license plate light assembly for the 05-06 bumper design. Thanks Nissan, by the way, for just not offering a compatible replacement part for set of lights required by law to drive. Anyway the lights were made by a company called Westin and the part number is 00007153. The only difference is that the housings are chrome, at first I thought it was that crappy plastic chrome but it turns out they actually have a metal (I think aluminum) shell on them. I sanded them down, cleaned with denatured alcohol, and primed them this morning. Tonight I'll spray them with the base coat and then clear coat, after that they'll be ready to install.

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    April 7, 2019
    I spent Saturday replacing the steering rack bushings...again. Two years ago I bought some Richochet brand polyurethane rack bushings on fleabay that turned out to be complete trash. One of the them shrunk and the other turned into a parmesan cheese block and disintegrated resulting in some weird steering lately. At least now I know why the alignment would be great one day and off the next and then back to great. Nissan sells a bushing for the passenger side of the rack but not the other so I used a replica from Febest, also an ebay part so we'll see how long that holds up.

    While I had the skids off I noticed the radiator lower mount was a little loose so I created a zip-tie brace to hold tension on it. Other than that I found a few other things that were rattling and loose so I took care of those. Also I noticed a the output seal on the trans is leaking pretty good, I had to add 1/8 qt of Matic-S so I need to start planning that repair.

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    April 23, 2019
    The Fedex guy just dropped off some goodies for me. I finally bought a small touchup paint and clearcoat for a really small spot on my door that's not big enough for the hassle of spraying it. At the same time I ordered the brand of bumper paint they sell, mar-hyde Black Satin to paint the rear bumper ends with along with a green scuff pad.

    Given the wipe new treatment I did a year ago is completely gone now I'm going this route now, I'll take pics for a how-to while I'm working on them. I'm really hoping that this works out because it's annoying to have the rear bumper and the rest of the truck look good and then have nasty plastic bumper ends with that wavy pattern in them.

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    April 27, 2019
    Prep and paint complete!

    Just waiting on a final dry before reinstalling everything. The results so far look great, the before and after pics kind of make me wish I'd done this a long time ago because of ho easy it was.

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    May 18, 2019
    Got up early to beat everyone to the complex car wash and ended up spending about an hour scrubbing all the plastics, first with dawn dish soap and a green brillo pad, followed by a few of those original brillo pads with the soap already in them and a quick wipe down with acetone. The plastic was perfect to paint after that. Something I noticed with the Black Satin paint btw, if you paint until the can is empty towards the end it will start to get blotchy. I noticed it quickly and stopped, went and grabbed the other can I ordered and was able to easily cover the blotchiness up. Other than that it's good stuff and really bonds with the plastic.

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    So i finally got everything back together around noon and thought I was done...until I took a look at the pic I took before coming back inside. With everything else nicely painted the stuff I didn't paint aka the grille and the lower intake piece looked especially terrible. The grille has had a chip for about 8 years now and I was really tired of seeing it so today was enough to shame me into fixing it. I stopped by Ace to pick up some Krylon Textured Shimmer dark gray paint and a tube of JB Plastic weld. The stuff is great, I molded it onto the shape of the chip and in about an hour it was ready to sand down. The paint looks awesome to me, I hit all the black sections of the grille with what was left of the Black Satin from this morning along with the burger and sprayed it with some clear just to make it more durable. It was one of those days where I finished literally as the sun was going down but man was it worth it, I'll get some pics tomorrow of the whole truck but here's how the grille came out:

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    Last edited: Sep 18, 2019
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  5. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    Holding For Build
     
  6. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    May 26, 2019

    I finally did a headlight mod! It took me a day and a half because one of the lenses wouldn't come clear for me so I had to get a 3M Heavy Duty headlight kit to re-sand everything and it comes with clear coat wipe on packets which was nice. I removed the giant orange reflector painted the chrome trim with a body paint matching spray I had leftover from my bumper job, then sprayed it all down with clear coat. I've been wanting to do this one for a while now and I'm glad I did because I love how it turned out.

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    May 29, 2019- July 2019
    Got started last night on converting the interior illumination from orange to white, it's much easier than I thought which feel great to say for once! I learned how to test the led polarity with my multimeter to figure out which end is positive and the electrical board has the positive side listed which helped a ton. I didn't realize that the switches are always illuminated because the orange is so dull, the white really stands out now.

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    Painted the wheels!
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  7. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    Worked on attaching more stuff to the blue sea fuse block over the weekend, it really cleaned up the wiring mess behind the dash a lot. Also figured out a loud popping noise that kept happening on turns. At first I would have sworn it was coming from the front control arms but over a couple weeks narrowed it down the the rear. The u-bolts nuts were a little under the torque spec so I tightened those up and pb blastered the heck out of the leaf packs, no more noise.
     
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  8. Fromfrontier2Xterra

    Fromfrontier2Xterra I spend more money on comic books than my X Super Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    30,011
    Location:
    All over PA
    You have the ubolts off recently or Father Time the culprit?
     
  9. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    Not since early March when I was doing some leaf spring work. The noise started right after an off road trip that had about 3 hours of washboard road to get there and back, I'm thinking maybe the vibration loosened them up + might have needed to be re-torqued before that trip.
     
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  10. TerryD

    TerryD Sliders Supporting Member

    Messages:
    827
    Location:
    Covington, Va
    I check the torque on mine regularly. I've seen plenty of instances where they come loose on off-road vehicles and make a mess.
     
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  11. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    That's smart, I'm adding it to my list of stuff to check out from time to time. I used red loctite on them last time and visually they didn't seemed to have moved but they were definitely getting loose.
     
  12. Allshookup

    Allshookup Test Drive

    Messages:
    30
    Location:
    Burleson, TX
    Those headlights turned out amazing. I love the orange reflector delete, so clean.
     
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  13. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    Thanks man! It was way easier to do than I was expecting going into it. The original plan was to keep the chrome but it started flaking off all over the place so that idea went out the window lol. I'm glad it did though, I love the black housings.

    Side note that I just remembered, are you still wanting that rear seat cupholder assembly? I replaced mine a while back and have been hanging onto the old one just in case you still wanted it.
     
  14. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    Got caught up in a traffic jam today but the view was much nicer to look at than my usual traffic scenery

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  15. Prime

    Prime Some Kind of In Charge? Admin

    Messages:
    37,150
    Location:
    Denver-ish
    That's pretty!
     
  16. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    It's next to the river feeding Lake Ocoee up in Tennessee, I was just passing through but I love it up there.

    There's a ton of great remote camping spots in the Appalachian side of the state, back in 2017 when that eclipse passed over I used one of those 'eclipse route' maps to pinpoint a site pretty much directly underneath the total eclipse location. It was unbelievable at night, I've never camped anywhere that you could see more stars. With the lights off you couldn't see your own hand in front of your face, my gf was so nervous that every time she needed to use the bathroom she wanted me to be armed and standing within 15-20 feet 'just in case' haha.

    This pic was a 30 second exposure and you still can barely see anything.

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    Last edited: Aug 11, 2019
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  17. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    I pulled the rear view mirror once more to adjust the coloring some, I didn't like that it was still the stock green color on the compass and the 'power' led was a little too bright. I used the same adhesive film that I've been using on everything else, this result is 2 layers of the blue + 1 layer of the grey on top. I put the grey one on because you could see the blue film otherwise and with the grey added it just looks dark.

    I'm happy with the results, the second attempt I did 4 layers of blue + the grey but it was way too dim at that point. For the power indicator light I put a single grey overlay on it to make be a little less bright.

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  18. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    I'd like to welcome you all to celebrate with me on FINALLY GETTING THE TOWHOOK INSTALLED after 2 years!

    For anyone not familiar with this saga that played out over on the wasteland former X forum. 2 years ago couldn't find tow hook, ordered 1 from a member. Didn't insure it, thanks man, of course USPS lost it and I ended up with nothing. Went to my parents house, searched attic, found the tow hook, put in cargo hold for future install. 6 months later went to install it, bolts were too short. Waited 6 months, forgot bolts were too short, they didn't grow in that time, failed again lol. Ordered bolts at Nissan dealer, of course special order part so had to come back in a week. Picked them up, waited a few weeks and tried to install, stripped the bolt heads...it's getting depressing at this point o_O. Went to my parents house today and painted the trim on my dads Tundra TRD and used his enormous Snap-On box from his aircraft maintenance days to find the tools to remove those stripped bolts. Used the new bolts from Nissan to install the tow hook. Never before has something simple given me so much happiness to be done with.
     
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  19. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    I got under the X this weekend to take a look at the LCA bushings again after another slipped alignment. The amount of forward/rearward flex seems to be a little too much to me. They have 13k on them.

    They still re-center in the mount but it doesn't take much force at all to move it .25" in either direction and this is with the full truck weight in it. There didn't seem to be a lot of outward flex so maybe I can resolve this with some of the delrin washers until I eventually replace the entire bushings. Also found both the rear cam bolts weren't exactly tight, I was able to tighten them both close to 2 turns before I couldn't tighten without them rotating the cam washer.

    So alignment is out again for now but I've corrected it so many times already I should have the toe back where it needs to be within a week.
     
  20. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    Thought I was mostly done with the painting mods but the interior has been on my mind lately haha. I pulled the A pillar covers + handles to clean them up and see how the plastic looked painted with the mar-hyde black satin paint. Aside from having only one black interior panel at the moment I'm pretty happy with how these turned out.

    It's strangely most noticeable to me when driving because it's like the a-pillar disappears from your view, I guess it's having them dark vs that bright light gray color. My fall project will probably be pulling more of the interior and painting it black, idk if it's just age but the plastics have a brownish tint to them now that I hate.

    [​IMG]
     
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  21. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    I got up early to drive up to the Nissan dealership and order the lower control arms, the parts guy could only match the price of the other dealer if I prepaid and they aren't allowed to do payment over the phone for some reason. It's weird but lately I've noticed the dealer isn't stocking basic Xterra parts anymore, the lca's had to be ordered and will be in tomorrow morning.

    I'm not sure when I'll be able to do the installation because I'm waiting on the Delrin stuff to arrive so I'm debating doing a paint job on the new lower arms. I've always loved how the Raptor has those bare metal lca's, since I can't do that with the steel X arms I might go browse some paint this week to see if I can find a dull metal colored paint to mimic the look. Worst case it looks stupid and I just spray over it with some black.


    Here's a quick mockup of what I'm thinking it will look like:

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2019
    SledheadX likes this.
  22. SledheadX

    SledheadX Test Drive

    Messages:
    28
    Location:
    Rochester, NY
    I’ve been toying with that idea for my sliders. The “bare” look. But clear finishes don’t seem to be durable compared to good primer/paint. I’ll be interested in what you come up with.
     
  23. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    I've noticed that too, my 5100's and even the 5125's on the rear lost pretty much all of their metal finish within 8 or so months. Hopefully there's something decent out there I can use, I know they've been able to create a ton of nice lookalike paints in the past few years.
     
  24. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    I can't wait to get the moog lca's off and see what condition they're in. The alignment was a little weird yesterday, this morning backed out of my parking spot while turning, heard a pop, pulled forward turning the other way, and heard another pop. Pulled onto the road and the alignment's perfect haha.


    I ordered two Nissan camber bolts to replace the Febest ones I have on the rear, I found them on some site called Partssouq for a little over 5 bucks each, shipping was 10 but that's still half the price of what they are from my local dealer. I've never heard of them before but I found a few good reviews of the site so we'll see.

    https://partsouq.com/en/search/all?q=545807S000
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2019
  25. Zack.

    Zack. Bought an X Supporting Member

    Messages:
    83
    Location:
    Livermore, CA
    I’ve bought a few things from partsouq where even with shipping cost me less than any US dealer. They ship pretty quick for international too.
     
  26. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    Man they are fast, I just got the shipping notification for it. They have the ITR's shipped for about $100, I don't know if I even need to replace them but at that price...
     
  27. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    Drove up to the dealer this morning and picked up the lower control arms, I forgot how heavy these things are. I have a set of the Delrin washers that I'm going to put in with them and leave the factory bushings for now. If the looseness problem repeats again I'll pull them out and put some Delrin bushings in the arm, the Nissan LBJ was what I was really after anyway otherwise I would have bought some cheaper arms. Even with the price matching it was still about $360 for the two.
     
  28. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    Finished up installing the new lower control arms today, took about 3 hours to finish up. I think I've narrowed down what my biggest problem was. The second problem was the balljoints, once I got the arms off I noticed the boots were ripped on both and moving the joint around felt crusty. Probably full of rust. They had 14,500 miles on them and I started noticing problems around 4000 miles in.

    On the Moog lower control arms inside the bushings, the metal sleeve that the bolt goes through. Moog cheaped out and just left a smooth edge on the outer edge of each sleeve. On the Nissan arms the sleeves have serrated edges that allow it to dig into the frame mount once you torque the cam bolts down. It's extra grip to help the sleeve stay in place. I know this lca is an updated part number so it's possible that Nissan added this later and Moog is still using their clone of the original design. I've seen that before with the away bar bushings.

    No wonder it would never hold the alignment no matter how tight the cam bolts were. All it would take is hitting a big enough bump or hole and the lca would shift slightly. On top of that the mounts were greasy so I'm sure that only helped the arm move around. Driving to get the alignment was crazy but even with the wheels completely misaligned I could feel a huge improvement in the steering.

    I ended up painting the arms with an aluminum lookalike wheel paint that I found at advance auto. I'll need to get some more pics once it's aligned but the paint came out pretty decent.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2019
    TerryD and Prime like this.
  29. Prime

    Prime Some Kind of In Charge? Admin

    Messages:
    37,150
    Location:
    Denver-ish
    Wow. The OE arms look waaaaaaaaaaaaaaay better built than the Moogs. The Moog lowers I have in the garage may have just become emergency spares.
     
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  30. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190

    That would be my recommendation for sure. I just got back from driving around after leaving the alignment shop and man what a difference these things make, no more clunking, wandering, or popping sounds. I paid $72 for the moog lca and $165 for the OE, started having alignments not holding almost immediately when I went off road with it and at around 4000 with just regular on pavement driving. The balljoint was junk, I moved it around off the truck and it feels mostly ok, right until you move it to the area it would normally sit, I might cut the boot off to inspect before I send those back to RA.


    Here's a side by side comparison of the inside bushings:
    [​IMG]

    And the outer bushings:
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2019
    29erClan and TerryD like this.
  31. TerryD

    TerryD Sliders Supporting Member

    Messages:
    827
    Location:
    Covington, Va
    The longer I own this Nissan, the more against after market parts I'm becoming.
     
    General_Tarfun likes this.
  32. Prime

    Prime Some Kind of In Charge? Admin

    Messages:
    37,150
    Location:
    Denver-ish
    I mean. Yeah. That's kind of a thing with Japanese vehicles. The OE parts are just superior.
     
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  33. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    Same here, I've realized that if it's a vehicle you plan on keeping just buy the OE part for most things.

    Aside from brakes the aftermarket has gone crazy. They made a bunch of parts lifetime warranty but also made the quality so low they won't lose much money on those of us that actually use the warranty.

    My brother has been running into the same issues with his Dodge truck and also his Ford.
     
    TerryD likes this.
  34. westslope

    westslope Bought an X

    Messages:
    66
    Location:
    Wildfire country, BC
    Interesting hypothesis. Quality costs. Often the costs are fixed so considerable volume is required to make a positive return on investment.

    That said, you would think that one after-market brand would make the required investments and come up with a product that was similar in quality to the OEM parts but priced somewhere between the OEM price and the prices of the lower quality knock offs. Would love to hear some suggestions as to why that has not happened.

    It could be that lower quality after-market parts are more than sufficient for ordinary passenger cars and only niche market consumers like 4X4 off-roaders really subject components to extraordinary stress.

    --------------------------------

    The market for OBD II blue-tooth adapters seems to work in a similar fashion. Most of the cheap adapters available on the market appear to be faulty. I bought one, it did not work and then after going back and forth with the manufacturer, had them refund the item. Tedious.

    Wishing to avoid a repeat of that experience, I then bought the expensive but highly reputable ScanTool OBDLink LX Bluetooth Scan Tool which works like a charm.



    [​IMG]
    Enlarge
     
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  35. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    That's a possibility for sure, I wonder too if they try to get certain parts like balljoints and bushings to fit just good enough to work but also fit as many different unrelated models at the same time and maybe that contributes to the problems.

    I really wish there were a brand like you said in the upper quality area but slightly cheaper than OE but I have a feeling outside of the few of us that keep these trucks for a longer time most people approach it as "what the cheapest I can buy that will work for now." That's a good point though about the regular market vs off road, my dads Tacoma is an 07 and still has pretty much all original parts. I don't think it's ever touched the dirt and they have nice smooth roads out where he lives, that has to be easier on any part regardless of brand.

    It's a shame, I can remember back when getting aftermarket stuff was considered an upgrade. I guess there's a few things still in that category like UCA's and suspension components, basically anything that isn't a regular maintenance part. It's funny you mention the OBDII reader, I bought an ebay generic one a few years ago expecting it to not work and having to exchange it a few times, I got lucky and it worked fine and still does. Pure luck though, half the reviews said they were DOA.
     
    westslope likes this.
  36. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    The replacement camber bolts came in today. Made in USA, shipped to Dubai, purchased by someone in USA and shipped back. I don't understand how anyone actually made money off of these.

    [​IMG]
     
  37. Prime

    Prime Some Kind of In Charge? Admin

    Messages:
    37,150
    Location:
    Denver-ish
    How much did you pay for those?
     
  38. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    $10.36 total for the bolts and $11.32 for shipping. All in $21.68.
     
  39. Prime

    Prime Some Kind of In Charge? Admin

    Messages:
    37,150
    Location:
    Denver-ish
    Damn. That's a good deal.
     
  40. General_Tarfun

    General_Tarfun Bought an X

    Messages:
    190
    I think I paid something close to $50 for the other two I got from a local dealer, I might order a couple more just to have as spares.
     
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