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Old June 27th, 2016, 06:43 AM
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1985 110 CSW
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Boston
Posts: 113
Transfer Case issues

I had a kind of embarrassing issue caused by an issue with my transfer case.

I'll see the scene first - It was a local beach (Duxbury) with nothing difficult. You don't even need to air down. I convinced my wife that it would be a great summer evening with my 4 yr old, 3 month old and sister in law to eat out on the beach.

As we were turning on the beach I put the truck in Low. We came to the top of a hill and I need to stop for a pedestrian. After cresting the hill and with no momentum I dropped in to some soft sand where the transfer case popped out of low. I quickly dropped it into Diff lock/ H to get out of the soft sand and continued on the way. A few moments later I had to stop again because someone in front of me was stuck. A minute later I tried to start moving again and truck would not move. I wasn't stuck in sand but the transfer case wouldnt engage in H/L or Diff lock. No amount of finesse with the clutch trying to put T case in gear and take off worked. Eventually I got moving again, but it felt like the T case wasnt fully engage. The diff lock light was flickering despite being in L. There was now an aweful burnt smell which I assume was the transfer case fluid. I limped home in H, but again the diff lock light was on and flickering. I stopped a few times and but it in and out of difflock and in H and L range but the light would not go out. When I would make a turn it felt like the Diff lock was engaged but not 100%.

A few hours later a jumped in the truck and everything seemed to work as it should.

Any ideas? I assume the T case is probably trashed now, but it seems to drive ok.

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Old June 27th, 2016, 07:23 AM
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1983 110 200tdi 3 door soft top
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Fords, NJ
Posts: 1,871
Probably just the linkage, not the case it's self. Also air down thoes tires next time

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Old June 27th, 2016, 07:26 AM
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Mark Garrenton
'71 IIA 88 LS1 coiler, '84 110, +++
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Portsmouth Virginia
Posts: 684
The light only comes on when the dog clutch fork shaft moves enough forward to engage diff lock...maybe. On 3 transfercases in my possession I've seen the switch fully seated (from the factory?) which will not allow the dog clutch to actually engage with the output shaft even if the diff lock light comes on. I saw this on Jonesy's truck at Uwharrie a year ago too. In low range these things can get incredibly hot and along with oil/grease leaks can cause quite a stench. As far as shifting, the engagement and dis-engagement of diff lock and hi/lo is straight forward and shouldn't take great effort. I would suspect the linkage, particularly the actual shifter, to be the cause. The exception would be running with low fluid in the transfercase. A few years back I burned one up running it dry because I did no maintenance on it. That was a lesson I won't repeat. Check your fluid level and pull the tunnel to examine the shifter and linkage for proper operation before considering replacement. You'll have to go that far into it anyhow.
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