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chandler UltimaDork
12/14/20 5:37 a.m.

They have been NLA for a long time, junkyard is your best bet

Coder GRM+ Memberand New Reader
12/14/20 12:02 p.m.

In reply to chandler :

Well damn.  Guess I'll pull it all apart and see if I can do a better job "fixing" it than the last guy.  Don't think I can do worse!  I'll be happy if I can get the blinker to work without activating the wipers lol

chandler UltimaDork
12/14/20 1:43 p.m.

The bright light switch is actually a problem as well. It'll get stuck on and you have to disassemble the entire column to fix it - if you can. It's all old stuff, wish they had left the foot switch through to the end of production.

Coder GRM+ Memberand New Reader
12/14/20 5:16 p.m.

That's good to know.  I've been trying to get the switch out all afternoon.  Had to run to Advance auto parts to get a "steering wheel lock plate tool".  Hadn't ever come across that before.  Now that I have everything disassembled, I have to figure out how to get the wires through the tiny hole in the column.  I took the pins out of the connectors for the multifunction switch, but now I have to do the same for the signal switch because it's all one peice.  Sigh.  Wouldn't it be great if they put connectors on the steering wheel side of things?

Coder GRM+ Memberand New Reader
12/15/20 1:27 a.m.

I'm going to try to keep this short.  It's after 1AM here and I have work in the morning.  But I want to update my progress, what little there is.

Rather than work on important things like "why do the headlights randomly shut off", I decided to tackle my all-important multifunction switch.  After all, my wipers come on when I signal to the left.  I can't have that!

I thought it would be pretty cut-and-dry to remove the multifunction stalk, so I headed out the the truck on my lunch break.  The first hurdle I had to get over showed it self immediately after the steering wheel came off.

That's a steering wheel lock.  It takes a special tool to push it back (it's spring loaded) enough to take the C-clip off that retains it.  Or so I discovered after a good 20 minutes of googling.  Off to Advance auto parts I went to pick up one of these:

     The c-clip that retains the steering wheel lock mechanism is visible when the tool is pressing in on the lock mechanism.

     With the multifunction switch out of the way, I can see debris from previous "repairs".  To quote Eric O. "Ah the smell of frustration."

After much fussing with the wires to get them through the column's ridiculously small passages (I had to remove the pins from their plastic connectors), I had the multifunction stalk out.  Unfortunately it was still attached to the steering column housing.  Luckily, this pin was all that was still holding it and it came out easily.


With the stalk out, you can see just how much the previous fix had failed.  But I know why.  And I know why it probably failed in the first place.  While messing with the settings on the stalk, I turned the wiper control on the end.  When I did it was immediately obvious that the rod inside the stalk that you turn to control the wipers was severely bent.  Since it's bent, whenever you turn on the wipers, you are putting a LOT of strain on the base of the stalk where the repair was made.  I need to figure out some way to get in there and staighten it.

     Mostly cleaned up.  If you notice in the "frustration" photo further up, you can see the other metal ear in the debris that remains in the column.

Looking over the stalk closely, I noticed 3 blind roll pins that appear to hold the stalk together.  Fun.

That's where I left it for the night.  I'll see if I can get the roll pins out tomorrow or not.  And on that note, I'm going to go crash.  Hopefully I've been at least somewhat coherent. lol

chandler UltimaDork
12/15/20 7:11 a.m.

Good luck!

MadScientistMatt UltimaDork
12/15/20 9:21 a.m.

Very cool project! What's under the hood, a 318?

AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter)
AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
12/15/20 10:54 a.m.

I'd be swapping a late model column in there but quick!

Coder GRM+ Memberand New Reader
12/15/20 11:14 a.m.
MadScientistMatt said:

Very cool project! What's under the hood, a 318?

Yup!  318/a999

AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter) said:

I'd be swapping a late model column in there but quick!

I considered it and I may do that if I can't massage mine back into to service.  But I reeeeeally like the way this column looks lol

Coder GRM+ Memberand New Reader
12/16/20 2:22 a.m.

Tonight was a night of many ups and downs. 

I needed to find a way to remove the inner rod for the wiper control so I could straighten it out.  Like I said, it appeared that everything was held together with a series of blind roll pins.  After much consideration, I decided on drilling a hole opposite the pin and driving it out that way.  I don't like drilling holes unless I have to, but with the tiny size of the roll pins, it was my only real option.

After drilling the hole and locating the other side of the pin, I needed something the same diameter of the pin to press it out.  I settled on a finish nail with the tip cut off.  This ended up working very well.  I was able to carefully press out the pin with my shop press and pull the nail back out with some pliers.

This was the where the first turn of the night ocurred.  Removing this pin let me remove the first plastic panel.  Inspecting the innards of the stalk made it clear that this is NOT how the rod for the wipers would come out.  I examined the stalk closely again and decided the wiper knob must just pull off.  And it did.

With the outer casing of the stalk removed, I could see the bend in the wiper switch rod.  It would need to be straightened if I wanted any hope of repairs to the stalk to last.  With it bent, the whole lever would rock side to side as you turned the wiper knob.

After a bit of massaging with a mini sledge and my vice's anvil, the rod was a lot better, but it still made the lever rock side to side when turned.  I looked closer and could see that the lever was bent right at it's base.  It would be tricky to straighten while it was still attached to the electonics of the switch.  I decided it was worth it to remove the switch from it's metal casing to see if it could be disassembled.

     To remove the casing, I bent out two metal indentations that were retaining the switch on either side

While removing the switch, I very nearly lost the spring and ball bearing that serve as the detent mechanism.  Luckily they didn't fall out and I was able to set them aside.  I examined the switch and did not see a way to disassemble it in a nondestructive way, so I opted to keep it together.  Removing the outer casing did make more of the lever accessible and I was now relatively confident I could straighten the rod.  After a few more minutes of massaging the rod (wink), I got it straightened out enough that I could turn the wiper know without side to side motion of the lever.  Huzzah!  This was going to work!

And that's when I realized I was effed.  The other spring, which I thought was captive, had vanished, and the pin it retained was almost completely out of it's hole.  At this point I was working on my very messy workbench.  The spring was nowhere to be seen.  This was turning point #2.  I felt defeated.  From such a great hight to feeling like I got punched in the gut.  I went back upstairs to wallow in self pity.  While wallowing and drinking a nice glass of milk, I began to think of sources of small springs.  I had used mechanical pencil springs in projects before and had some in my "anything" drawer in the kitchen.  

Feeling a little better after my milk break, I quickly destroyed a Bic mechanical pencil and cut it's spring to size.  It just so happened to be the exact right diameter!  Huzzah!  I was back in business!

     The Bic pencil spring worked perfectly.  I'm not exactly sure what that mechanism does, but I'm relatively sure it will function properly.

     I removed the spring and pin so I wouldn't have to worry while I did some more fine tuning of the rod.

With the rod straight, I reassembled the switch and it's metal casing.  I then set to work coming up with some way to reattach the lever to the switch casing.  I didn't want to just re-epoxy it.  I didn't feel like that would hold up to the forces imparted on the lever.  I started to think about a sleeve of some sort.

Not entirely sure what I was getting yet, I drove over to the local Lowe's and aimlessly walked around with the lever in my hand trying to think of a good solution.  After visiting plumbing and not really seeing anything that I thought would work, I headed over to electrical to see if anything there jumped out at me.  While electrical was a bust, metal conduit got me thinking of a thick, rigid metal sleeve and some sort of metal legs that could be welded on to support it.

After some searching on their website for "1/2 steel bushing", I came across a half inch steel spacer in the hardware section.  Perfect!  While there, I also found a nice, thick steel washer to make the mounting base out of.

I measured the metal portion of the lever and then finally got to use the $10 antique store bench grinder I bought last year.

I then transferred that measurement to the spacer and cut it down to size with a sawzall...  I need a band saw.  I want one.  A few minutes, after I reminded myself that I'm not a welder, I had this:

And after many many hours of fiddling and wishing I had the proper tools and a workshop, I had this:

It ain't pretty, but it should hold up much better than epoxy ever would have.

Putting it together, it looks something like this:

     Note:  I don't have the lever push in all the way in this test fit.  I plan to use JB Weld in the sleeve before pressing them together for good.  This was just a trial fit.

I was missing a screw, so tomorrow I'll run back to lowes to find a replacement.  I'll probably paint the sleeve black so it's not so visible, and then reassemble.  I'm very proud of myself! (just not my welds) lol

Boredom New Reader
12/16/20 10:08 a.m.

Awesome job on all this! I will have to remember that pencil spring trick! 

I am excited to see it all back together. 

Also those welds are better than anything my shaky coffee addicted hands could do. 

Coder GRM+ Memberand New Reader
12/16/20 1:15 p.m.

In reply to Boredom :

Thanks for the kind words.  I'm going to try to get it all back together this evening.  I remembered that I saw the other screw in the debris that was in the column, so all that's left is reassembly!

Georges1991 Reader
12/16/20 7:26 p.m.

Wow great work! 


Makes me that much more glad I was able to order a new replacement for my '91 right off the shelf

Coder GRM+ Memberand New Reader
12/17/20 1:39 a.m.

I saw a parts truck on facebook marketplace for 800.  I almost considered it just for the blinker lever! lol.

No big update tonight.  While I was cleaning the epoxy off of the column outer casing, I came to the conclusion that a bit of paint would make it look a lot better, so I sprayed a few coats of flat black rustoleum and am leaving it drying over night.  I sprayed the new mounting sleeve at the same time so it won't stand out as much.



And here's the sleeve:

You guys may not care about this but I've been working on ti for a few days now so I'm going to post about it! lol.  I scanned my entire service manual and now have it in PDF format should I ever need to reference it.  1.37GB!  I might need to lower the DPI a bit so I can bring that size down. lol.  I'm running it through optical character recognition right now, so hopefully by tomorrow, I'll be able to search it, too!  I've made quite a mess in my spare bedroom/office. lol

Coder GRM+ Memberand New Reader
12/17/20 2:29 a.m.

Huzzah!  The OCR worked!  I now have a searchable PDF copy of my service manual!  I'm super excited!

Coder GRM+ Memberand New Reader
12/17/20 9:34 p.m.

I'm sure everyone's tired of hearing about this multifunction switch.  I know I am.  Well, I'm happy to say that it's DONE.


     A light coating of JB Quick Weld on the stalk and it's now permanently bonded to the sleeve!

     I lost daylight before I could finish, but here's a crappy flash shot of it in place!


Now that that's fixed, I can move on to more important things like "why do the headlights shut off randomly" and "hmmmm that sounds like a lifter tapping".

Oh, and I picked this up today, too :)

Coder GRM+ Memberand New Reader
12/19/20 1:13 a.m.

Set the timing tonight.  It was set at 0 degrees.  She's actually got a little get up and go now!

While I was setting the timing, it became very apparent that the tapping noise I was hearing was not an exhaust leak.   Sounds like a lifter on the passenger side.  Guess I should pop the valve cover off and see what's going on.  Hopefully it's just a loose rocker.  I don't know a whole lot about diagnosing these things.  I've heard it could be a bent pushrod or a wiped cam too.  Hopefully it's not the cam!

Oh, and I made this little beauty cause the stores were closed, lol.

Coder GRM+ Memberand New Reader
12/19/20 9:35 p.m.

So this might be happening... 

Coder GRM+ Memberand New Reader
12/20/20 5:17 p.m.

Well that went a bit sideways, but the deed is done.  I might be crazy and it probably won't work out, but...

I just picked up a 2019 pentastar v6 bolted to an 8 speed AWD auto with only 11k on the clock!  It also has most of a 2007 charger wrapped around it, lol.

I'm a fan of the pentastar motors.  I've had one in my wrangler for a while. It's got decent power and has been very reliable.

  • 2019 3.6L pentastar good for 300hp/264lbft
  • 8 speed automatic AWD
  • VVT with nice, flat, torque curve

If I can't get the combo to work in my D-150, I'll keep it as backup for my Jeep.


DarkMonohue GRM+ Memberand New Reader
12/20/20 5:28 p.m.

Oh, my. Alright, well, I'm the very picture  of ignorance on the pentawhatsits, so...let's see where this goes!



Dusterbd13-michael (Forum Supporter)
Dusterbd13-michael (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
12/20/20 5:28 p.m.

Well now!

This should be fun to watch 

Stealthtercel Dork
12/20/20 10:00 p.m.

Should we take a second to think about the guy who put a 2019 drivetrain in his 07 and then Stuff Happened?  He must be having a REALLY sucky 2020.

Coder GRM+ Memberand New Reader
12/20/20 10:46 p.m.

Don't get to excited just yet! lol.  The engine swap, if it even happens, will be further down the road.  I need to get the truck legal before the city tells me to get rid of it.  So for now, the 318/A999 stay.  Once it's legal and I have a plan put together, all bets are off!

The pentastar and 8 speed are going to take a lot of R&D.  I plan to get the pentastar running and try to figure out as much of the transmission roadblocks as I can with them out of the truck.

From this very excellent thread, I learned that the pentastar requires these minimum components to run, which is excellent news:

  • PCM (Power Control Module.  What most people would call the "computer")
  • TIPM (Totally Integrated Power Module.  Kind of a "smart fuse box" and the source of much frustration in the Mopar world)
  • WIN (Wireless Ignition Module. Reads the code from the key, push button ignition)
  • Key
  • Gas Pedal (drive by wire)
  • NSS/CS (Neutral Safety Switch/Clutch Switch. Since mine is automatic, I'll need the NSS which is integrated into the shifter, I believe)

I think getting the engine running will be fairly simple.  These are the challenges I foresee:

  • Distance - The engine will be nearly an hour away at my brother's place.  He has a garage.  I do not.
  • Time - My brother is being very nice letting me work on the engine there as my neighbors would be pissed.  But he's only giving me a month. 
  • AWD Transmission

For the transmission, I see 4 options, each with it's own pros and cons.

Option 1 - Disable AWD either just physically or both physically and electronically

PROS: Uses what I have with the least fabrication.  Leaves option 2 as a possibility later on.

Cons:  Since it's all wheel drive, I may run into "limp home mode" issues if it doesn't see wheel speed.  So I'll probably have to figure out how to make wheel speed sensors work.  It looks to be a simple tone wheel/magnetic pickup combo.  I see some info that says AWD can be disabled by HP Tuners in the computer, so that may be an (expensive) option. But then I have a perfectly good transfer case just out there flapping in the breeze.  Would also need to change the oil pan since the front axle goes through the oil pan.  No joke.

Option 2 - Convert my 2WD truck to AWD

PROS: Uses what I have and would be badass!

Cons:  Just figuring it out.  I'd have to either find a spindle that works with the existing control arms and would allow me to mount up a 2019 AWD charger hub and hope the CV axles are the right length, or somehow modify the existing 2wd spindle to take the hub, or shove an AWD charger front end under it, or... 

Option 3 - Find a non-AWD auto trans and use that instead

PROS: Would probably work.  Chrysler 3.6 auto transmissions are everywhere.  Should be plenty of junk yard transmissions to choose from

Cons: Would need the PCM from the donor and would likely have to flash it or have it flashed to work with my motor.  It's also the most boring option lol.

Option 4 - Find a manual PCM and a manual transmission and convert the truck to 3 pedals

PROS3 pedals are always better than 2!  100% possible and I have rough instructions to follow.  That's exactly what the guy did in the thread I posted above.  He mated a Ford Racing T5 to a stock Jeep bell housing using a custom cut adapter.  I'm sure he'd share the CAD files with me if I wanted to give it a go.  I could also source a Mopar manual transmission that's already designed for the 3.6 pentastar.  I can probably sell the AWD components for a pretty penny.  Maybe even a shiny one.

Cons: Have to source a transmission and manual pentastar PCM.  Junkyard T5 from a mid 90's Mustang would probably do the trick and be cheap enough.  The Mopar transmissions are probably more expensive.  He had some location issues at first, so I may have to overcome those as well.

Coder GRM+ Memberand New Reader
12/20/20 10:55 p.m.

In reply to Stealthtercel :

He was quite the character.  He had 4 Chargers that he turned into 2 HEMI Chargers.  One of the cars that got the HEMI was the 2019 the engine and trans came out of.  He was going to put the 2019 drivetrain in the 2007 and something about a cop car front suspension... He rambled a lot... lol.  But his wife was done with it.  He had to give up the charger or his Harley project.  He chose the Harley.  Nice folks.  I'm going back next weekend to remove the rest of the Charger parts from their yard.  Not because I need or want them, but because his wife asked me nicely to take everything.

Coder GRM+ Memberand New Reader
12/21/20 6:37 p.m.

Today was a bust.  I drove over to the car to see if I could get the computer to talk.  No dice.  The wireless ignition module is missing.  The guy is looking for it.  And he found the title, so I can sell the carcass legit now.  I did verify the other required modules are all there and my OBD-II dongle lit up when I applied power, so it looks like the PCM is at least getting power.  I may see if I can find one in the junk yard just in case.

Oh, last night I tried out my new smoke machine to see if the 318 had any big vacuum leaks.  To my surprise, there wasn't much.  But there is a definite leak on the front of the throttle body.  It looks like a small vacuum nipple broke off. 


Looking in my service manual, it appears it was for the "Heated Air Inlet", which is on the intake horn.  The one next to it is for the "Diverter Valve" which was part of the air pump system.  The air pump has long been removed and the "Heated Air Inlet" is now plugged into this port.  Since the nipple is broken off, I'll plug the hole with some epoxy.


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