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Thought it was the drain plug, bolt won't go back in now

67StingrayJ

New Member
Joined
Nov 18, 2022
Messages
17
Location
Las Cruces New Mexico
Hey guys.
Sort of in trouble here I thought this bolt was the drain plug when I pulled it and now it won’t go back in. Anyone ever have this issue? It’s like it was threaded into something then when I removed the bolt, something inside turned and now it won’t go back in. Like the threads aren’t there anymore! I’m not even sure it was the original bolt!

Someone please help! I’d take a phone call even!

DEFBB185-98AB-4B80-8FA6-857B3D5171FD.jpeg


E9A454AD-3799-4796-B918-385403DC9215.jpeg


FE242532-4798-454F-931E-FAE1112E080D.jpeg
 
OP
67StingrayJ

67StingrayJ

New Member
Joined
Nov 18, 2022
Messages
17
Location
Las Cruces New Mexico
And yes, I realize now that is neither the drain or the fill hole. Regardless, I don’t know why it won’t go back in. How do I get it back I ? It’s. 2004 4 speed manual TJ.
 

Jerry Bransford

TJ Guru Moderator
Staff Member
Supporting Member
Joined
Nov 9, 2015
Messages
25,435
Location
Fleming Island Florida
Yes that is a "Do Not Remove" reverse idler shaft bolt. I think that bolt even says Do Not Remove on its bolt head.

The good news is you can probably get it back in.... I saved the below from a post years ago...

The fix: I put a little grease in the hole that the bolt came out of to hold the support in place while you are moving it back into place. I used an awl ( stubby screwdriver with a point) to move it back up into position. You will know when it is there because the awl will go into the hole. Surprised me the first time and I missed getting the bolt back in quick enough when I removed the awi. I positioned the awl at the bottom of the hole and moved it up a 1/4" at a time til I got to the hole. I was very gentle after I got the bolt back in, gong into each gear including reverse while sitting still. Then I drove it only in the driveway in case of a problem. I had no problems and have been off-road since.

Good luck!!!
 
OP
67StingrayJ

67StingrayJ

New Member
Joined
Nov 18, 2022
Messages
17
Location
Las Cruces New Mexico
Sounds like you’ll be pulling the transmission now. 4 speed manual?

Oops… 5 speed manual.
Yes that is a "Do Not Remove" reverse idler shaft bolt. I think that bolt even says Do Not Remove on its bolt head.

The good news is you can probably get it back in.... I saved the below from a post years ago...

The fix: I put a little grease in the hole that the bolt came out of to hold the support in place while you are moving it back into place. I used an awl ( stubby screwdriver with a point) to move it back up into position. You will know when it is there because the awl will go into the hole. Surprised me the first time and I missed getting the bolt back in quick enough when I removed the awi. I positioned the awl at the bottom of the hole and moved it up a 1/4" at a time til I got to the hole. I was very gentle after I got the bolt back in, gong into each gear including reverse while sitting still. Then I drove it only in the driveway in case of a problem. I had no problems and have been off-road since.

Good luck!!!
So there is something in there that I need to rotate with an awl? Is there a picture of whatever it is in there so I can get a better idea of what I need to do?
 
OP
67StingrayJ

67StingrayJ

New Member
Joined
Nov 18, 2022
Messages
17
Location
Las Cruces New Mexico
Problem Solved.

I got two picks and proceeded to incrementally rotate that crescent moon shaped component till I could feel the bolt hole. I then removed the fill plug, bent up hanger and temporarily held that crescent moon shaped component in place. had I not held it in place with the coat hanger, it would "fall" again and I'd have too incrementally rotate that crescent moon shaped component into position once again. And truth be told, it took me several attempts to get the hanger to blindly hold it in place. but, I eventually got it and the bolt slipped right in. Took a total of 10 min.

Much thanks to @Daryl
That video was perfect!
 

TJ Jim

TJ Enthusiast
Supporting Member
Joined
Feb 12, 2021
Messages
844
Location
Tennessee
Problem Solved.

I got two picks and proceeded to incrementally rotate that crescent moon shaped component till I could feel the bolt hole. I then removed the fill plug, bent up hanger and temporarily held that crescent moon shaped component in place. had I not held it in place with the coat hanger, it would "fall" again and I'd have too incrementally rotate that crescent moon shaped component into position once again. And truth be told, it took me several attempts to get the hanger to blindly hold it in place. but, I eventually got it and the bolt slipped right in. Took a total of 10 min.

Much thanks to @Daryl
That video was perfect!

Fantastic. Glad to hear you got it back😁