The clutch gang!

DanW

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Mine was a "Bad" clutch, did not engage properly at all, yet it took a ton of abuse and was not slipping at all when I replaced it. I agree fully with your 1.2.3.

Still, why did any of them ever come apart? I believe official tally is under 10 catastrophic failures out of 35,000. But still, why?
As I understand it, the why is that they were super-heated by LOTS of slipping. Not just a little, like at a stop light, but more constant slipping that built up more and more heat. Initially it was reported that the one that wound up blowing apart, cutting hydraulic lines, and causing a fire, had hit 1200 degrees. Later that appeared to be revised to 1100. There is no pressure plate in the world in a production car that can tolerate that kind of temp, especially for any extended time. That's what weakened the metal and caused it to fracture. I doubt that these clutches ever get much beyond 200 degrees. If they do, say when slipping a lot like pulling a boat up a ramp, it wouldn't be too much higher and it would be only for a short period and would cool down quickly right afterward. These kept slipping and slipping, the entire time the Jeeps were driving, as I understand it. That constant slippage due to the clutch plate only partially engaging, built up more and more heat.

They're probably beyond 50k now in sales and the highest number of pressure plate's effected appears to be around 12, but the pressure plates could have come apart in some without blowing out the bell housing. I only heard of two that I'm pretty certain came apart and busted through the bell housing. One of those was the one that cut a hydraulic line and burned his Jeep to the ground. They gave him a new Jeep and I'm certain that one of the conditions was that he stop talking about it. That's just standard procedure and is directed by attorneys. Not unique to FCA/Stellantis. But they did take care of him, last I heard. Oh yeah, I've also not heard any reports of any injuries.

It is really VERY hard to determine the actual number, but if it were significant, that would not be hard to see. You only get an idea of the number when the NHSTA or another federal agency is involved. They only release that info when they have to. Sometimes they only hint at it. But everything I've read or heard points to a very low number, which is around 12. If you try and be safe and double that number you are still only looking at 24 out of 40k plus. That's 3 ten-thousandths of a percent. That's why we don't have forum members posting pics right and left of their blown out bell housings or telling us their pressure plates and clutches were replaced under warranty. (Worn out clutches don't necessarily indicate the problem, however, for reasons discussed earlier.)

And again, a good number of clutch drivers wear them out early. And it might not be the owner. If you let someone else drive your Jeep, without you present, as I do, you won't know if they were excessively slipping the clutch unless they tell you. I did see my brother in law smoke the hell out of mine and my wife told me she did the same. Both were in either 3rd or 5th gear by mistake. That's why I like the dash indicator. Not for me, but for others. My neighbor described my wife's episode as "like a destroyer laying down a smoke screen!" Fortunately, mine shows no sign of a problem. I don't think either did it for very long before realizing their mistake. It sure pissed me off, though. But I kept that to myself.
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jbcrane

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So this is an old but active thread, and I've really enjoyed reading through all the technical information surrounding the clutch issue. Honestly, it's well above my pay grade - but sincere thanks to all who have weighed in.

My '21 JLU is my first Jeep and when it was time to purchase there was no doubt it would be manual transmission. I was tempted by a nice 80th Anniversary edition, but it was an automatic and therefore less desirable. When visiting the dealer lot prior to buying, no manual trans were to be found. I was fortunate in timing, however. They had 1 coming in, built almost exactly as I was configuring him on-line. The decision was met with a mix of confusion and envy from others I spoke with with, ranging from, "why on earth would you do that...?" to "I wish I'd done that when I bought my Jeep." So there you go. My best experience with a clutch was a '83 Subaru wagon. When the clutch cable finally broke - at 180K miles - I took it to the mechanic who later told me the clutch had never been replaced, and they were replacing the original, stock clutch. At 180K miles. This made me smile.

It has taken a few months (bought him in April) to figure out his feel, but now it's second nature and I simply can't imagine voluntarily trading a manual trans for automatic. For me, having control over what gear I'm in is worth any perceived minor inconvenience. I've heard some cite it's more difficult to re-sell a manual transmission. But I'll never sell this Jeep so it's a moot point.

I also wonder what will happen to the manual transmission when things go all electric. I read recently that by 2030 Chrysler was shooting for 80% of their vehicles being electrified. From what I've seen, any kind of electric or hybrid solution does not allow manual, forcing selection of the 8-speed automatic transmission. Wonder if this means in the future, manual transmissions will completely cease to exist. Makes me even happier I was able to get mine before they became even more hard to find.

Peace, JBC
 

DanW

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So this is an old but active thread, and I've really enjoyed reading through all the technical information surrounding the clutch issue. Honestly, it's well above my pay grade - but sincere thanks to all who have weighed in.

My '21 JLU is my first Jeep and when it was time to purchase there was no doubt it would be manual transmission. I was tempted by a nice 80th Anniversary edition, but it was an automatic and therefore less desirable. When visiting the dealer lot prior to buying, no manual trans were to be found. I was fortunate in timing, however. They had 1 coming in, built almost exactly as I was configuring him on-line. The decision was met with a mix of confusion and envy from others I spoke with with, ranging from, "why on earth would you do that...?" to "I wish I'd done that when I bought my Jeep." So there you go. My best experience with a clutch was a '83 Subaru wagon. When the clutch cable finally broke - at 180K miles - I took it to the mechanic who later told me the clutch had never been replaced, and they were replacing the original, stock clutch. At 180K miles. This made me smile.

It has taken a few months (bought him in April) to figure out his feel, but now it's second nature and I simply can't imagine voluntarily trading a manual trans for automatic. For me, having control over what gear I'm in is worth any perceived minor inconvenience. I've heard some cite it's more difficult to re-sell a manual transmission. But I'll never sell this Jeep so it's a moot point.

I also wonder what will happen to the manual transmission when things go all electric. I read recently that by 2030 Chrysler was shooting for 80% of their vehicles being electrified. From what I've seen, any kind of electric or hybrid solution does not allow manual, forcing selection of the 8-speed automatic transmission. Wonder if this means in the future, manual transmissions will completely cease to exist. Makes me even happier I was able to get mine before they became even more hard to find.

Peace, JBC
I'm not sure if it will fly, but Jeep had a concept at the Easter Jeep Safari in Moab that simply substituted an electric motor for the 3.6 engine. It has an honest to goodness manual transmission in it! Same one as in our Jeeps. The rest of the drive train was the same, too. The press who drove it while we were there were raving about it.

So it is very possible that it may stick around in this kind of form, if there's enough demand for it. We now know it can be done. I would have loved a chance to drive it. I've read that it is pretty heavy, though, so that is somewhat of a penalty off road.
 

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I'm not sure if it will fly, but Jeep had a concept at the Easter Jeep Safari in Moab that simply substituted an electric motor for the 3.6 engine. It has an honest to goodness manual transmission in it! Same one as in our Jeeps. The rest of the drive train was the same, too. The press who drove it while we were there were raving about it.

So it is very possible that it may stick around in this kind of form, if there's enough demand for it. We now know it can be done. I would have loved a chance to drive it. I've read that it is pretty heavy, though, so that is somewhat of a penalty off road.
I'm planning something similar for a Suzuki Samuari I've had for years. Waiting to come across a cheap Leaf or similar. As far as the magneto concept, my only complaint is that it was noisy, and not in a good ICE engine kind of way
 

Chile1

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how many of you posting on this "clutch gang" thread are driving with 37" without regearing? And if so, what's your experience? I just purchased the Mopar 17" x 8" Beadlock-Capable Wheels and I'm stuck on whether to go with 35s or 37s. i'm also looking to add the Mopar 2' lift and if i do go with 35s, i don't want them looking too small with all of the added lift space...
 

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how many of you posting on this "clutch gang" thread are driving with 37" without regearing? And if so, what's your experience? I just purchased the Mopar 17" x 8" Beadlock-Capable Wheels and I'm stuck on whether to go with 35s or 37s. i'm also looking to add the Mopar 2' lift and if i do go with 35s, i don't want them looking too small with all of the added lift space...
JLUR on 37s, no regear. Works just fine as a 4-speed though I'm considering regearing just for the heck of it and to use 5th and 6th
 

vasdimpop

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I got a 2 door manual, because that's all I've driven all my life (aside from my current DD which is auto and hybrid). Why? Because no paddle shifter or tap to shift beats a 3rd pedal and gearshift... the engagement of the drive, the feeling of connectedness to your vehicle; nothing like it.
 

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But I'll never sell this Jeep so it's a moot point.
Your local Jeep/Chrysler/Fiat/RAM/Ford/Yugo/Citroën/Harley Davidson dealer is looking to pay you TOP DOLLAR FOR YOUR TRADE!!! You are an idiot if you don't cash in and take advantage of these AMAZING ONCE IN A LIFETIME SAVINGS!

Did you pay $50,000 for your Jeep? WILL WILL MATCH YOUR PRICE, and pay you $12,000 for your Jeep, plus a free car wash, and NITROGEN FOR LIFE!

Did you pay $70,000 for your Jeep? WILL WILL MATCH YOUR PRICE, and pay you $13,000 for your Jeep, plus a free car wash, and NITROGEN FOR LIFE, as well as a free beer huggie with the name of our dealership.

Please tell all of your friends about our dealership! We will HOOK YOU UP with AMAZING DEALS of 60-70% below what your trade is actually worth! Wait! That's a misprint! Our computer must have been hacked! We will HOOK YOU UP with AMAZING DEALS of 142% below what your trade is actually wor
 

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how's your acceleration/mpg?
I'm sure acceleration is slower, but I'm not sure by how much. Still feels great so no complaint on pickup.
I average 16 mpg combined over the last 10k miles. It will get 23 mpg at 55 mph and down to 11-13 mpg at 75-80 highway speeds.
1st gear was already too short so it's a better match now with the 37s. 5th and 6th were pretty useless stock so no big loss now.
Big issue has always been big spread between 1-2 and 2-3. I'm hoping regearing big to 5.13 will help, make 1st a crawl gear and let me use 2nd to 6th on the street, with 6th falling where 4th is now
 

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omnitonic

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I'm revisiting the clutch gang thread to share my current experience. I don't know if I finally got used to the clutch or if it finally broke in, but I've been noticing over the last week or so that my control over the clutch is a lot more fine-grained. If I try to pull out in 3rd by accident, I can feel it before I stall, for example. I can ease out on it very gently and get rolling in 1st without touching the throttle. I never used to have anything like this level of control, so either the clutch is behaving differently, or the Jeep finally trained me.

Either way, I'm really happy with the MT, even when I get stuck in stop and go traffic. I'm not even counting the days until I can regear. It's okay like it is. I've finally become attuned to the bottom of the torque curve, somewhere a little below 2,000. I can feel the difference between "I'm making just enough power at low RPM to creep through this traffic" and "I'm lugging, you are abusing me" now. It's a subtle little buzz.

I had my sights on a Centerforce clutch, which was reputed to solve all the clutch problems with these things, but as things stand now, depending on how long this clutch actually goes before I wear it out, I would probably just replace it with another OEM clutch. It isn't as awful as I first thought and/or I did finally get used to how awful it is. Either way...
 

nomographer

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Either way, I'm really happy with the MT, even when I get stuck in stop and go traffic. I'm not even counting the days until I can regear. It's okay like it is. I've finally become attuned to the bottom of the torque curve, somewhere a little below 2,000. I can feel the difference between "I'm making just enough power at low RPM to creep through this traffic" and "I'm lugging, you are abusing me" now. It's a subtle little buzz.
Your profile says 2021, so how many miles does it have on it?

Mine was thankfully just around 1000mi when I went on my first offroad adventure and it had just reached the point where "below 2000rpm" was a possibility. I was able to comfortably move along around 1.5krpm and, paying attention, down around 700rpm, dealing with hills and driving over rocks in 4L. Three weeks earlier would have been comparable difficult.

Now I can basically drift up to a stop sign in 2nd, do a mini stop, and start going without shifting; I'm not paying attention to the tach since I'm watching the road, but it's not sputtering or trying to die on me and it must be below 500rpm since I'm only going 1mph at that point. (Not uphill, and I'm not just immediately cramming the pedal to the floor either).
 

omnitonic

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Your profile says 2021, so how many miles does it have on it?
Not quite 7,000 but I'm getting close.
Now I can basically drift up to a stop sign in 2nd, do a mini stop, and start going without shifting; I'm not paying attention to the tach since I'm watching the road, but it's not sputtering or trying to die on me and it must be below 500rpm since I'm only going 1mph at that point.
That's the kind of stuff I'm talking about indeed. To ride it around a corner in 2nd like that, you have to be really in tune with the machine, and the machine needs to be in tune with you too. Whatever the reason, things have finally come together for me.
 

nomographer

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Had it in sixth today! Coasting down a forest service road around 20mph. I think it would have managed 30mph but the washboarding would have pitched us over the side. Well it was easier than stopping to get to 4H just to switch it back 2min later. :angel:

Also compared to April, shifting through gears in 4L was fairly smooth. Practice helps I guess.

Obviously this 25%+ grade wasn't in sixth:



:involve:
 
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