Wrenching on their own rigs? | OVERLAND BOUND COMMUNITY

Wrenching on their own rigs?

  • Hi Guest, you may choose a LIGHT or DARK theme that works best for you with the "Style Chooser" button at the bottom left on this page!
  • HTML tutorial

Jean Klaude The Jeep

Rank VI
Benefactor
Member

Traveler III

4,364
Lexington, TN, USA
First Name
Jason
Last Name
Shelby
Member #

6080

Spent sometime last week in Broken Bow, OK, exploring the Ouachita National Forest. Not on any camping / overlanding adventure/ just a vacation with the family. Seeing the 4x4s made me yearn for some wheeling.

Which got me thinking about maintenance and repairs, who does their own? Do you just take it to a shop?
I'm 40 years old, and my dad has been a mechanic whole life, between the two of us we'll tackle anything, getting ready to totally redo the suspension and steering components of my Ford Excursion.


Sent from my iPhone using OB Talk
 
  • Like
Reactions: TerryD

Delete Me

Rank I

Contributor III

154
Texas
I only take warranty work to the dealership. I don't even care if an auto shop offers free oil changes ... I do it myself. You need to do your own wrenching. Its done right. You know its done right. You go back and fix your screwups. In the end your smarter, have confidence in the work and are more likely to be able to make trailside/roadside/parking lot repairs.

I am not going to be doing machine work. I am not going to be doing an alignment. I'll not be rebuilding a transmission. Some things your just not going to do. Makes no sense. Send it out. Order off the interweb. Swap stuff.

I take all the dirty work over to my buddies house and mess up his driveway. :) If its something my neighbors will raise a stink about I'll do over at his place. Everything else gets done in my driveway or garage.
 
  • Like
Reactions: WJ - Firefly

canadianoverlanders

Rank V
Member

Advocate III

1,531
Whitehorse, YT, Canada
First Name
Marcus
Last Name
and Laurie
Member #

6196

First off I envy the guys who are mechanics or truly mechanically inclined. For the most part I do my own work. The warranty left the building a long time ago. Jeep TJ's are simple to work on and there is still an abundance of new and used parts for them. Were I draw the line is I don't have a press, or hoist so things that require either it goes to National 4x4 in Carleton Place or Smith Falls Auto body. Although today I had National do the u-joints in the front, my back and hips are done and thankfully they took me in on short next day notice. Plus it is nice having these guys to do the work when I can't or don't have the time or ability. The other place I draw the line is with the computer stuff...for-instance I had to get me computer flashed to clear a persistent code. In the end it required a windows update or something like that! The benefit to doing your own work is you know your rig, and when things go south on the trail or your tight on cash you can fix it yourself or at least get it "good enough" to get it home or to the shop with out wrecking it more. By maintaining it myself, I notice things before they become big expensive problems. Your pocket book will thank you plus saving on the high cost of labour you can buy more parts, gear or gas. Cheers!!
 
  • Like
Reactions: Eric Neal

crit_pw

Rank V
Member
Supporter +

Advocate II

1,651
Silt, Colorado
Member #

6206

I do all of my own since I was 16. Couldn't afford for a shop to do it when I was younger and as I learned and eventually went into the mechanic trade I found I didn't trust anyone else to touch my vehicles or bikes. Whether bolt on or full fab I love doing my own work. Not to mention the pride when someone asks "Who did it for you?" :)
 
  • Like
Reactions: canadianoverlanders

WillRunner

Rank V
Member

Member III

2,087
Loganville, GA
Member #

2912

Major stuff I'll take it to a shop but simple mechanical things I'll handle in the garage with my hand tools... I try to do as much as I can that way to help familiarize myself with the vehicle.
IMG_0059.JPG
 

Attachments

Axe.Amos

Rank 0

Contributor I

60
Sheffield, UK
Member #

3069

I did alot of work on my last JK myself as liked to be sure that if something went wrong on the trail i could eliminate/identify potential issues. The current rig i have to admit had most of the mods completed before it came to me, but hasn't stopped me from double checking everything. Just provides you with a level of confidence when your out on the trail.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Craig M

waexplorer

Rank 0

Contributor I

I do all my own too. I don't trust anyone else due to bad experiences. It seems I can't even get a flat repaired correctly!! Had my fuel tank replaced under recall a couple years ago and they left two vent lines off the tank, so the first time I fill the tank gas pours out faster than it's going in. Fixed it myself rather than take back to dealer...
 

ELY-9999

Rank V
Member

Influencer II

1,939
Parker, AZ, USA
First Name
ELIYAHU
Last Name
YHWH
Member #

9999

Today, I just wrenched in new tie rods, cv axles, changed the transmission fluid, finished installing my transmission cooler with remote spin-on filter and temperature gauge, fuel filter, rotors and lower ball joints on my 4Runner at the base hobby/auto repair shop and it only cost me $40 to use the lift for 8.5hrs.
I just picked up my 1999 4runner and need to replace noisey CV axles with torn boots, but it also pulls left. I will be replacing the tires as well, but I hear so much about junk aftermarket axles that I would appreciate any guidance from those more expierenced in such matters. I heard NAPA is good and has a lifetime replacement warranty?

I'm also thinking that the miss and stunble during hard acceleration is from a worn timing belt and planning on that job as well (Ebay full service kit?). Would it be wise to also replace the oil pump on a motor with 240K while in there?

Finally this was converted from automatic to man 5-speed and lost the cruise control. Any chance of getting that back?

Many Thanks
 

Kevin108

Rank V
Member

Member III

2,741
Virginia Beach, VA
Member #

6632

I do all my own work short of an automatic transmission rebuild or setting up gears. Long before YouTube, I had my own expert to show me in detail how to do things. Dad has been a mechanic his whole life. He worked at small-time garages as a kid and on more advanced stuff in the Air Force. In his own words, he's worked on everything from roller skates to jet engines.

I grew up in the garage with him our there working constantly on a little bit of everything. He made sure I learned how to turn a wrench, and has taught me a ton. Curiosity and a used computer led me into IT as a teenager, and I taught myself a lot that I still use. But before I turned 20, I had some solid experience working in IT and knew it wasn't for me.

I managed to find my way into construction, and have loved every minute of it. The combination of skills in mechanical work, electronics, and general craftsmanship has been incredibly useful and complimentary, no matter which aspect I'm working on. Being able to build a computer, a house, or a car, there's seldom anything I'm afraid to tackle.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: tbcota25

RedSheep

Rank IV
Member

Member I

933
Harpersfield, NY
First Name
Christopher
Last Name
Oakley
Member #

21230

Seeing all the I had to learn and be able do most all of myself because I couldn't afford to pay anyone else when I was younger is sooooo me yet at the same time it only made Me vehemently detest "having" to do it and thus I never got any satisfaction or enjoyment from it .. no garage, no power/air tools, lying in the dirt, cold greasy, fighting rusted blots, using a tree and chain to pull motors, bone yard parts .. f-that if I need to do a trail fix fine... but otherwise and mostly since I can now afford "the luxury" of having others do that work, it's off to the dealer or My friends off-road shop.
 

TerryD

Rank VI
Member

Member III

3,402
Covington, Virginia, USA
First Name
Terry
Last Name
R
Member #

3710

Ham Callsign
KT4OZ
I've never been able to get work done that I was satisfied with. I decided to pay Nissan to do my timing chain service last year. They missed a tooth on the timing chain the first go round and it was throwing phasing codes. Took it back and they half-asses the fix and now it leaks and looks like they used a case of rtv to seal it up, but it still leaks. I'll be going back in to seal it up myself this spring and then a full timing service at 200k.

I had a shop do the timing belt on my wife's Escort when we had it. Afterward I found most of his work light in the car and the water pump bolts backed almost completely out.

I had ball joints put in my truck by a reputable shop, they pointed the grease fittings at the back of the knuckle so you can't get a grease gun on them.

I can't even get a tire balanced 1/2 decent locally....
 
  • Like
Reactions: Anak

Bouncer

Rank IV

Advocate II

1,250
Wagoner County, Oklahoma
First Name
Buddy
Last Name
K
I wrench on the bolt on stuff, bigger things that I have to "tear into" I watch tons of YouTube, and if no go I ship it off. I unfortunately don't have a group of friends that are mechanically inclined to help, so I have me, and my girls come out to help. I LOVE it when I fix it myself. The sense of accomplishment and pride are outstanding, not to mention the money saved. I would love to do it more, but time, knowledge, and resources (tools and space) are limited.
 

Anak

Rank V
Member

Member III

2,741
Sandy Eggo
I've never been able to get work done that I was satisfied with. I decided to pay Nissan to do my timing chain service last year. They missed a tooth on the timing chain the first go round and it was throwing phasing codes. Took it back and they half-asses the fix and now it leaks and looks like they used a case of rtv to seal it up, but it still leaks. I'll be going back in to seal it up myself this spring and then a full timing service at 200k.

I had a shop do the timing belt on my wife's Escort when we had it. Afterward I found most of his work light in the car and the water pump bolts backed almost completely out.

I had ball joints put in my truck by a reputable shop, they pointed the grease fittings at the back of the knuckle so you can't get a grease gun on them.

I can't even get a tire balanced 1/2 decent locally....
Sounds like we live in the same world.
 
  • Like
Reactions: TerryD

persquank

Rank V
Member

Member III

2,054
DFW
First Name
Randall
Last Name
Stephens
Member #

9377

I've never been able to get work done that I was satisfied with. I decided to pay Nissan to do my timing chain service last year. They missed a tooth on the timing chain the first go round and it was throwing phasing codes. Took it back and they half-asses the fix and now it leaks and looks like they used a case of rtv to seal it up, but it still leaks. I'll be going back in to seal it up myself this spring and then a full timing service at 200k.

I had a shop do the timing belt on my wife's Escort when we had it. Afterward I found most of his work light in the car and the water pump bolts backed almost completely out.

I had ball joints put in my truck by a reputable shop, they pointed the grease fittings at the back of the knuckle so you can't get a grease gun on them.

I can't even get a tire balanced 1/2 decent locally....
I've also had a handful of bad experiences when it comes to car repair/service. Slowly but surely, I'm gaining the ability to do more and more myself. Not just knowledge, but specific tools and equipment. Most recently, I picked up a tire changing stand and a TPMS programmer. That was in response to a dealership leaving a sensor loose in a wheel after I specifically asked for the sensor back. It's a classic case of "If you want it done right. Do it yourself."
 
  • Like
Reactions: TerryD

Wanderlost

Rank VI
Member

Member III

3,316
Caledonia, Illinois
Member #

8490

We do all our own modifications, repairs, and maintenance.
Through the videos we produce our hope is that viewers will gain the confidence to take on these things themselves.
There's nothing more satisfying then being successful at something you were at first apprehensive about doing.
 

jordan04gx

Rank V
Member

Enthusiast III

1,828
Chittenango, NY
First Name
Jordan
Last Name
Moore
Member #

9411

Ham Callsign
KD2NFZ
Nobody troubleshoots anymore. So do my own work now. My father was mechanical and tried to pass it along to me, but I resisted for many years. I brushed up on 12v DC electrical over the last couple of years which helps with a ton of stuff, I picked up a digital scope for doing sensor and signal work, and I have even done my own alignments and a/c work now.

I've always done oil changes, brakes, etc. But the job that really started it all for me was a waterpump/timing belt on a 2003 v6 Honda. It was such a spendy job, because of the labor, I decided to do it myself and invest what I would have paid a shop into higher level tools. Since then, I haven't looked back.

I have a shop I trust now, and I've used them for a few last minute simple things, but shops just don't take the time to truly troubleshoot anything anymore. So if the problem is not already pre-diagnosed or super obvious in nature, you have a very high certainty of being disappointed or having to go back several times. In which case, you could have just done it yourself.
 

Smileyshaun

Rank V
Member

Member III

2,779
Happy Valley, OR, USA
First Name
Shaun
Last Name
Hoffman
Member #

4799

The only thing I've ever had a shop do was machine work on motors and rebuilding transmissions , other then that all repairs and fab work I handle myself