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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently did CV boots on my 88 Trooper and my 99 Trooper. Doing it the second time I felt pretty comfortable so I decided to document the process for those interesting. This thread will show you how the 4x4 hubs, cv axles, brakes, ball joints, and other front end parts all work together and how to replace the ones you're interested in. This should be applicable to any Trooper years 88-02 (despite minor differences) and the other Isuzu trucks from that time frame as well (Rodeo, pickup). I tried to list sizes of bolts as I remember them from my 99, but I know the 88 hardware was a tad different. Torque specs listed towards the end

1. Remove the front wheels, scotch the back wheels, and put the vehicle up on jack stands
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2. Remove manual/auto 4x4 hub if equipped (10mm)
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3. Remove 4x4 hub housing or hub cover (8mm male hex)-- note: you probably need an assistant to hold the brake at this point to loosen the bolts (that is why you do not remove the brakes until later on)
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4. Remove the snap ring holding axle in place (you need the straight, squeeze to spread style snap ring pliers) and pull the housing off the hub. At this time, get the assistant to hold the brake as you break loose the 6 17mm rotor to hub bolts if you are replacing the brake rotors (I usually remove the rotors because I find it easier to clean the hub and replace the inner seal with the rotor off)
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5. Wipe the grease away to reveal the lock ring with three phillips head #2 screws. Your best bet to get these out is a special impact screw driver or getting one person to hold a phillips into the screw as hard as humanly possible while your trusty assistant puts the channel locks to the screw driver handle in an attempt to turn it. If all else fails, you can drill the screw out. Most of the time, all you need to do it drill the head out a bit (NOT OFF so that you do not risk damaging the lock ring or retaining nut) and the screw will free up and come out (trust me, use a small flathead and tap it into the screw to break it loose).
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The aftermath:
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GET NEW SCREWS: these can be found at some home depots or at this website BelMetric.com - Metric Fasteners & Hardware
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6. Remove the retaining nut by using either needle nose pliers or a small flathead screwdriver. Your tool of choice might require the gentle tap of a rubber hammer to get it moving.
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7. Now you can pull out the outer wheel bearing
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8. Time for the brakes! Start by removing the bolts that hold the calipers to their bracket. There are two 19mms. No need to remove the brake line unless you are replacing the caliper
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I ran out of allowable images so
to be continued...
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
9. Use your favorite piece of twine string or baling wire to hold the caliper out of the way. Then remove the brake pads and anti-rattle clips
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10. Remove the two 22mm bolts holding the caliper bracket to the knuckle
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11. Slide the rotor and hub assembly off. Now you can seperate the rotor from the hub, remove the inner grease seal (with a big flathead screwdriver or seal puller) and slide the inner wheel bearing out. Also, remove the three 12mm bolts holding the rotor dust shield to the knuckle.
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12. If you have front-wheel ABS... remove the 5mm male hex bolt holding the protector shield to the knuckle. DO NOT TRY TO REMOVE THE ABS SENSOR (unless its already broken and you're doing that). It will almost surely break and then you'll either be without ABS or without $500 for the new sensor from Isuzu.
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Picture of the current situation:
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13. Again, only applies if you have ABS... pull back the rubber dust shield above the upper control arm and remove the two 10mm bolts holding the ABS wire down. Unplug the connection as well.
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14. Next, remove the shock if you are so inclined. I was replacing them anyways so I just undid the hardware and used a crowbar to remove the shock from its holder, but this is not necessary. This also only applies if you have ABS... jack up the control arm assembly to get access to this 12mm bolt that holds in the ABS wire (its kind of behind the shock). Now feed the ABS cord out towards the knuckle as far as possible to maximize slack in the cord.
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15. Now, its time to start disassembling the knuckle for ball joint replacement. If you don't have one, go collect a free-to-rent tie rod seperator tool from a parts store. Use it to remove the tie rod from the knuckle after removing the 19mm nut and cotter key.
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16. Removing the 24mm nut and cotter key from the upper ball joint. Then smack the knuckle with a hammer a couple of times to seperate it from the ball joint.
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17. Get another ball joint seperator that will fit the lower ball joint, pop the ball joint out after removing the 27mm nut and cotter key. Note: the lower does not need to be removed to remove the CV axle. It makes it much easier though and I was replacing mine anyways. If you remove the lower ball joint, have the lower control arm supported with a jack.
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18. Now, if you don't have ABS you can just pull the knuckle off the axle and set it aside. If you have ABS and want to preserve your sensors, set the knuckle on a 5 gallon bucket or electrical spool to keep it out of the way without it putting stress on the sensor wiring.

I ran out of images again
to be continued...
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
19. Undo the old inner CV boot clamp, remove the old boot from the soup can, and use a pick or small flathead screwdriver to remove the axle retaining ring.
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20. If you are replacing the ball joints, go ahead and remove the nuts and bolts securing them to their respective control arms.

21. If you are pulling the entire CV axle for who knows what reason (probably leaking diff fluid from the side of the axle) then you can remove the four bolts that run parallel to the axle, holding the bracket to the axle. Next remove the two large bolts that screw upwards into the frame and hold this bracket to the frame. Lastly, pull the bracket out to the side and remove the snap ring holding the inner part of the CV shaft in.

22. Clean the grease off everything and reassemble with new grease.
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To reassemble... basically do the inverse with these torque specs that I got from the 88 and 99 Trooper factory service manuals.
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Reassembly tips:

1. Put the outer CV boot on with new clamps and full of grease before putting it back in the vehicle.
2. Put the little CV boot clamp on the inner boot and fill it full of grease.
3. Put the CV axle and retaining ring in after filling the soup can half full with grease.
4. Tighten inner-most CV axle clamp.
5. Bolt lower and upper ball joints to control arm.
6. Put the CV axle through the knuckle (coat inside with new grease first) and then slide it up on the lower ball joint.
7. Attach the tie rod and upper ball joint. Then tighten all three nuts and replace cotter keys.
8. Then reattach all the ABS wiring stuff if you had to undo it.
9. Put the shock back in if you removed it
10. Reinstall the rotor dust shield
11. Repack the wheel bearings and put them into the hub with a new inner grease seal.
12. Snug the rotor back down to the hub if removed. (NOTE-- if you have ABS and are replacing your rotors, remove the ring from the inside of the old rotor and install on new rotor)
13. Put the caliper bracket and brake caliper back on (use plenty of grease on the slide bolts to ensure your brake pads don't wear unevenly) -- you might have to use a c-clamp to compress the piston
14. Tighten the rotor down to the hub as someone holds the brake pedal down
15. Put retaining nut on. Tighten it to where it was before if you took a picture or use a luggage scale to see how much force it take to turn the wheel (should be approx 3.3 lbs of force) to set the preload.
16. Put the lock ring on with new screws... just snug them down good, they do not need to be as tight as possible
17. Put the 4x4 hub housing on with new gasket. Someone will have to hold the brake to tighten these bolts.
18. Put the snap ring and washers in. Then fill the housing with new grease
19. Install the dial portion of the 4x4 hub with a new gasket (these can be found on ebay)
20. Put your wheels back on and drive!

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Feel free to message me with any questions. I will happily update the post if someone points out anything I may have forgotten to mention
 

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Thanks for the excellent writeup! Has benn “stickied”.
 

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Excellent! I have been deferring this job and am running out of excuses to continue procrastinating, including this thread.
 

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Awesome stuff. Only thing I'd add is that the rotor / wheel bearing stuff past the axle retaining clip is optional for just CV axle replacement, you can leave it on and not have to deal with those screws that are indeed always stripped.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Awesome stuff. Only thing I'd add is that the rotor / wheel bearing stuff past the axle retaining clip is optional for just CV axle replacement, you can leave it on and not have to deal with those screws that are indeed always stripped.
Yes, you are correct-- facing the trifecta of screws is optional, especially if you need to "speed-run" replacing your CV boots. I chose to remove it for obvious reasons with the other parts I was aiming to replace. However, I would recommend disassembling the inner hub to repack the wheel bearings because I don't know anyone who packs them every 30,000 miles like the owner's manual says. lol
 

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For those screws, if you pick up a JIS screw driver, it will crack them loose without striping them like a US made screw driver will. I picked up an impact one from Amazon for something like $15. I love it.
 
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