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For those of you wanting to do the Peugeot to AX-15 swap this thread is for you! >

For those of you wanting to do the Peugeot to AX-15 swap this thread is for you!

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For those of you wanting to do the Peugeot to AX-15 swap this thread is for you!

Old 01-04-2011, 02:06 AM
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Default For those of you wanting to do the Peugeot to AX-15 swap this thread is for you!

Well i just got done rebuilding my engine a little over 3 months ago and now my piece of junk Peugeot Transmission finally decided to detonate. So i was left to make a decision.


Options:


Replace the piece of junk tranny with another piece of junk tranny
-or-
Get rid of the piece of junk tranny and replace it with a really good one so i don't have to rip it out again!

So obviously i chose to replace it with a AX15. I learned a lot from the swap, so i decided to pass on what i learned to those of you wanting to do this swap!



Facts you need to know before doing the swap


- All old clutch components including pilot bearing will work with the early internal slave AX15
- You CAN use your original crossmember
- Only use an AX-15 out of a Cherokee, the wrangler AX15's transfer case bolt pattern is clocked differently.
- The AX15 has a 23 spline output shaft, the peugeot has a 21.
- The peugeots transfer case CAN be used as long as you swap out the input shaft.
- The AX15 has a different back up light switch connector. Easy fix explained further down
- The old transfer case shift linkage will not work with the AX15


Finding the AX-15


A lot of people say that the external slave cylinder is the way to go. Yeah they have their advantages, there is no doubt, but honestly a internal slave isn't that bad. I have been running one for years with no problems! If you buy a good internal slave to begin with, its gonna last a long time. In my experience it was a heck of a lot easier to find a internal slave AX15 and a lot cheaper. Also i have done a lot of research and the earlier AX15's with the internal slave have the same pilot bearing size as the peugeot. Convenient..... oh yeah! The internal slave AX15 can use all the same clutch components as the Peugeot... convenient... once again oh yeah! So given that i used all that same clutch components, it saved a lot of money and time. So that was a no brainer for me. However for those of you wanting to swap the external slave AX15, it still bolts up all the same, it just requires you to adapt over the hydraulic line, and replace the pilot bearing as the input shaft requires a larger pilot bearing. more expensive... can be, more time involved.... pretty much...Less convenient... yup! Anyway.... I ended up landing a 1989 AX15 out of a salvage yard for 300 bucks! So the process begins....


So the project begins ..... Ripping the piece of junk out


I began by taking out the center console and unbolting the three bolts on the Peugeots shift tower to release the shift lever. That way when i pulled the tranny out from under the jeep it wouldn't get caught up on anything. Make sure you unbolt the exhaust from the manifold and take the pipe completely off! Not only will it make life easier, it spares you a cracked manifold if the crossmember is lowered with the exhaust still attached. Pull off the drivelines, starter, vacuum lines, speedometer cable, wiring (CPS and back up switch connectors), breather lines yeah you know.... all that good stuff. To make it easier i unbolted and lowered the crossmember so it was easy to unbolt the top two torx bolts. After i got the bolts off, i then jacked the crossmember back up and then supported the engine with a jack stand. Then off came the rest of the bolts and after some fighting the tranny was out.


Transferring Transfer cases!


Once the transmission was out of the jeep i put the Peugeot and AX15 side by side so i could compare the two. The AX15 is quite a lot larger then the Peugeot. The length is pretty much the same, but the height and width is noticeably bigger on the AX15. Anyway moving on to the transfer case. If at all possible i would recommend getting the 23 spline transfer case with the ax15. It would make for a much faster and easier process. But for those of you that are up to tackle the input gear swap, its really not that hard. There really isn't a whole lot to the transfer case, most of the internal components come out in large assembled pieces so its pretty easy. The first thing to do is take off the front yoke. Then the housing that goes around the front input shaft. There is a lock ring around the input shaft, that needs to be removed. Next you need to remove the tail housing. Then there is a lock ring around the output shaft. After that is removed the case can be split. The whole shift and chain assembly should just lift out. Then all thats left is the planetary gear set. Once the inner planetary gear-set is removed there is a lock ring holding in the input gear and that can be swapped in for the new one. (i picked it up locally for 100 bucks). Now after swapping in the input gear i put it back in to the transfer case and the groove for the outer lock ring wasn't even past the bearing. So i took it to the place where i got the input gear and it turns out it required a shorter bearing. We swapped in the new shorter bearing and put the lock ring on and all was good. I don't know if my input gear was a later year, or weird or something, or if all 23 spline input gears require a smaller bearing? so i'm just gonna throw that out there. But if anyone knows what the whole ordeal with that is let me know! Anyway putting it back together is the reverse of taking it apart (who would have thought ) so its pretty easy! MAKE SURE YOU ARNT LEAVING ANYTHING OUT BEFORE YOU SEAL THE CASE! haha i just got done tightening the case bolts and i found the spring laying on my table... so i had to tear it apart again to put in the stupid spring I used grey RTV for the mating surfaces and allowed 24 hours to dry before adding oil. (*update... still NO leaks, grey RTV is awesome on transfer cases just sayin'*) After that whole input gear swap ordeal was done, i bolted it up to the tranny and all was good!


Crossmember, tranny mount, and installation

Now figuring out the crossmember and mount was the source of major stress for me prior to the swap. I kept finding mixed information of whether or not you can use the old crossmember and i couldn't get a solid answer on the mount. So i finally just bit the bullet to find out myself by trial and error. Now keep in mind that i don't have the mounting plate for the AX15. With that plate and mount the transmission bolts right up to the predrilled holes on the original crossmember. However with that mounting plate the crossmember will be set back a couple inches. No worries the factory all ready drilled holes on the unibody to accept the AX15, all you have to do is tap them out and the crossmember will bolt right up. Thank you Jeep engineers for making life easier, too bad they failed and didn't put in the AX15 to begin with. Anyway my AX15 didn't come with any type of mounting plate, or mount for that matter. To be honest at the time i didn't even know it had a mounting plate. I didn't live anywhere near a salvage yard that had cherokees. I got my transmission from a place 6 hours away. I didn't want to drive all the way back for the crossmember, so i decided to make my original work, without the mounting plate and mount that the AX15 is supposed to have. So after hours of contemplation and research i went to auto zone and picked up a transmission mount from a 1999 jeep TJ. The mount fit directly to the transmission, and the holes lined up to the pre drilled ones on the crossmember. So i bolted the crossmember to the mount, and lifted the transmission into the jeep. Once i had the transmission bolted to the engine, i found that my ax15 mounting location sits way far towards the passenger side. (if i had the AX15 cherokee plate and mount i wouldn't be having this problem, but we all ready went over that ) So what i did is used the two farther holes used for the peugeots mount, and then measured out and drilled two new holes so that between the original two holes and my new two, it accepted the 4 bolts of the mount. I then i used a grinder and cut out a access hole on the bottom so i could put nuts on the two new bolt holes that i drilled. I then mounted the crossmember back up and the transmission and Shabam it sits perfectly where it needs to be. Now because i don't have the plate and i'm using the TJ mount, the crossmember uses the same mounting holes as the peugeot on the unibody. So the only time the crossmember has to be moved back that couple inches and the new holes have to be tapped out, is if your using the AX15 mounting plate and appropriate transmission mount for the cherokee. The way i did it, the crossmember is in the same location as the Peugeot. Another thing i noticed with the way i mounted it, is the transmission sits up a little bit higher then the Peugeot did. Normally it wouldn't be a issue, but my jeep is lifted 5 inches without a transfer case drop, SYE, or different driveline. I was getting a little bit of driveline vibes around 35 MPH before the transmission swap, so i was worried what driveline vibes i would get after..


Finishing up the Project


Finishing up and installing everything was pretty straight forward. The drivelines, starter, hydraulic line, exhaust, etc all went in the same. I then proceeded to bleed the clutch, which took forever and royally sucks! The only thing really different about the install is the AX15 has a different reverse switch connector. All i did to fix that was cut the connectors off the peugeots and AX15's switch, then transferred the peugeots connector over and spliced it into the AX15's wiring. Took 5 minutes. Also the shift linkage for the 4 wheel drive doesn't line up, so i'm working on it. Ill keep this thread updated when i find a solution. Anyway i moved on to fill the transfer case and transmission up with oil. The transfer case fluid i pumped in from the bottom. The transmission shift lever and the center console was still not installed so to make life easier i just filled up the transmission with 10W-30 from the shift tower inside the jeep until it came out of the fill hole on the side of the transmission. Way easier then pumping oil into the fill hole under the jeep. To put the shift lever back in, all you do is push down on the ring, and twist it and it locks in to place. Once that was in, and the interior was put back together the jeep is finally ready to drive!


Test drive and thoughts now that the swap is over


Well can i just say how amazing it is to drive a jeep that you don't have to jam in to gear and thats transmission noise doesn't drown out the sound of the engine! The AX15 shifts like butter, and i can actually hear my engine for a change rather then an annoying transmission whine! Going back to what i said earlier about the driveline vibes. I have driven my jeep around for about 80 miles, and the vibes are pretty minimal, and no worse then what i had before the swap. I still have vibes around 35 MPH but after 40ish it stops. I went out on the freeway and drove it up to 80 MPH and there is no vibes what so ever! I ordered a transfer case drop (as i all ready need one due to having a 5 inch lift, ill have a SYE some day )) so i'm pretty sure the transfer case drop will solve the vibes completely. I changed my U-Joints when i did the swap so that probably helped, but still i'm pretty thrilled! I'm sure if my jeep wasn't lifted there would be no driveline problems what so ever. I am going to start looking for an AX15 crossmember and plate, just because, but if your into saving money and don't have an AX15 mounting plate and crossmember, then the way i mounted the Tranny worked out pretty good! If you have the AX15 crossmember, mounting plate, and 23 spline transfer case.... then install would be a lot easier. But given that i didn't have all three, it made things a bit more time consuming and complicated. Overall i would have to say the swap wasn't bad at all! And trust me, its a worth while upgrade! The ax15 has made my jeep more reliable, and a heck of a lot more fun to drive!
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Old 01-11-2011, 06:42 PM
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*EDIT*
YOU CAN USE YOUR OLD 4 WHEEL DRIVE LINKAGE WITH AN EASY MODIFICATION
The bracket that hooks to the transmission just needs to be flipped, and it will bolt up just fine.
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Old 09-12-2011, 01:31 PM
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Originally Posted by goneboating06 View Post
*EDIT*
to make life easier i just filled up the transmission with 10W-30 from the shift tower inside the jeep
Uh, doesn't the manual tranny take 75W-90 gear oil?

Will keep your notes handy as I may be facing a clutch replacement in the near future...
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Old 09-12-2011, 01:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Bstrom650 View Post
Uh, doesn't the manual tranny take 75W-90 gear oil?

Will keep your notes handy as I may be facing a clutch replacement in the near future...
yes but finding GL3 is a pain, and 10W30 is pretty close on the API tables
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Old 09-12-2011, 04:50 PM
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^^^^ x2. 10w30 works great, ive been running it for over 15k miles with no problems. The factory has actually issued a bulletin stating that 10w30 is the new spec for the ax-15, which is convenient considering our 4.0's use 10w30 as well. I would however recommend changing the oil in the tranny more frequently with 10w30 then you would with 75w90.
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Old 09-12-2011, 04:55 PM
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Good info.

I don't expect my trans to last forever.
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Old 03-27-2012, 10:18 PM
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great info thanks!
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Old 04-05-2012, 10:56 PM
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awesome man great write up, im doing this swap this coming weekend, my 88's 3rd gear sucks getting into and i miss my ax-15 in my 89
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