Just when I thought I only wanted a ZF
A friend called Saturday to let me know of a '96 DI that had just arrived in a local pick-n-pull. The vehicle was really clean but the exhaust showed heavy soot. It was never modified, had minimal rust probably due in part to the heavy undercoating and showed no signs of abuse at all. There was a crap load of receipts for service over it's 165k miles. I guess the last service recommendation of $1600 was enough to put the owner off. It was also a manual gearbox which was the first I'd seen of many junkyard DI's. The yard closed in 1.5 hours and I had my birthday party to attend in the same time frame. Yesterday in a balmy 35 degrees I was at the gate with tools (manual only) in hand to pull a short shifter 'J' R380. Laying on a cold gravel lot with only a drop cloth sucked but I pushed on. Luckily, not one bolt or nut gave me issue save for the muffler flange which succumbed to the sawzall easily. I dropped the trans at the rear and pulled the LT230 for easier access to the bellhousing bolts. After some hours I had the R280 on the ground. The output of the mainshaft looked like new as did the input shaft (with very little play too). Next was the pedal assembly and clutch piping which came out with little effort. I went back under the truck for the flywheel which also went smoothly. By the 6 hour mark I looked like a chimney sweep and was exhausted. I carted the R380, LT230 input gear, flywheel, both drive shafts, cross member, steering sector shaft, pedal assembly, R380 coolant lines, clutch piping/mc and the center console up to the counter. The young lady wrote the ticket up. Transmission - $199, console - $30, core charge - $30, enviro fee - $12, taxes - $6 for a grand total of $278. I only wish I'd reattached the LT230 as it would have gone with the R380 at the same price I'm sure. Maybe I'll go back and try to get it for a song. Not a bad haul but my body hurt in places I didn't know existed. I'm thinking this will go into the '90 RRC behind a 4.0 block I'm building up. If not, it will be fitted with a spare Defender shifter assembly and go into my '84 110 behind a '96 GM LT1 V8. Decisions, decisions...
Retirement is great, I haven't missed a day yet!