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ergomoto
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Posted: Mar 04 2010 at 5:16am | IP Logged Quote ergomoto

I should call this post,  I have that coffee grinder noise under my hood at low RPM or just off idle –Help. However, I thought I knew, or could hear, likely where it was coming from and set out to find a plausible fix.  I suspected my supercharger and started researching the unit on line and here at the forum -again. 

I say again because a while back I got the performance bug and wanted to see what I could reasonably do to soup my 2003 Frontier S/C SE up.  Apparently, there’s not much or at least not in the conventional sense anyway.  I quickly learned that the mildly exotic performance enhancing S/C unit on the Frontier greatly limited the usual bolt-on options as well as even specific maintenance manuals.  I found it surprising how long I had to search even just to find the manufacturer of the unit.  Eaton M62 –first generation.

I found then that, a popular mod was to reduce the size of S/C belt pulley, spinning it up faster and working the S/C that much harder. There is a respected pulley set on the market, but concern with over-spinning the bearings was a flag for me –until I thought I might have a S/C rebuild on my hands anyway.

After returning to my Eaton M62 research, I discovered that there’s a cottage industry revolving around the “grinding” supercharger issue.  Most notably regarding this unit’s nose cone, it’s specialized oil, and “coupler”.  As the kits are not expensive I chose one of many offered at eBay, as well as the bearings and seal to do a complete rebuild should the kit prove inadequate or simply misguided.  I was concerned however, as I found little mention at the forum about this otherwise “common noise” and no mention or reaction to these kits.  The supercharged truck’s top of that line status and few years of production may account for such little chatter about them, but I was flummoxed by so little discussion about S/C maintenance and performance frankly.  Time to find the noise with my own wrench.

*This kit was not supplied with the two rear roller pin bearings or front nose cone seal, I added them in my order from this vender.

I decided to go after items one-at-a-time, and closely listen to any, if at all, changes in the phantom churning.  First, I would go in after the Eaton M62’s oil and coupler.  It could not have been an easier procedure.  Though the instructions were for nearly any application of the Eaton M62, and there were a good number, they got the job done.  The supplied siphon easily removed nearly all the oil from the nose cone’s small filler port. 

Torx Drain/Filler Port

I was unduly excited to find however, that, after pulling the belt, much was made of checking the play in the un-belted pulley for slop.  The pulley did have what felt like excessive free play clock wise and counter.  However, upon pulling the nose cone the reason for this was obvious –the stock coupler is spring-loaded to reduce presumably shock.

Kit "coupler" left & stock "spring loaded coupler" right.

New coupler installed in nose cone.

Open Eaton.

Though the springs could be fatigued, the coupler showed no signs of undue wear, but I replaced it with the solid nylon plastic piece in any case –but harbored little hope that this was the fix.  I resealed the cone to the housing with the supplied Loktite gasket, torqued it down to the suggested 15 ft lbs and refilled the cone with the also supplied one (of two) 8oz GM S/C Oil bottles.

Upon starting the truck, the noise still returned, not terribly surprisingly, after warm up, yet now with a steady even grind, if with less of a loose wobble.  Damn, bearings I thought, and resolved to go in after them in the nose cone.

I also, as you may likely have surmised, ordered a reduction pulley kit and puller from Pulley Boyz, as I rationalized that I would not be able to liberate the pulley shaft and reveal the bearings and seal without removing the pulley.  My research had also warned that removing that pulley was no mean feat and in fact unvaryingly destroyed the stock pulley.  No sweat, new pulley too – in a reduced size.  Ok, only one size from 2.64 stock  to 2.5 (also available are 2.4 & 2.3), not enough to cook my new bearings, but a step in the right direction.

My excitement over billet parts got the better of me and I convinced myself that I could simply replace the pulley and no bearings for now, just to have some fun.  I could always pull a part I had just pressed on to get at the bearings later I rationalized.

 Not so easy.  I mangled the pulley for sure with the puller.  It’s pretty much a one-way street with no return once started.  But, once the new bright pulley was installed (with the tool essentially in revers.  Pulley Boyz instructions were top notch), all was well again, if still grinding away.

The Pulley Terminator

Pulley Damage

But, hold on here just for a minute.  While driving the truck around the following day, I noticed a surprising gain in S/C spin-up and top end power with just a one step smaller pulley! This was great!  I did still have the troubling noise, but I was faster.

Then, a new suspect was considered.  In loosening the tensioner pulley on the belt system a number of times in this operation already, I suspected that it or even it’s immovable other reverse pulley sharing their mounting plate could be accountable for such racket.  After spraying lithium grease into the hubs and backsides of both pulleys, suspecting that both were sealed bearings in any case, I drove on through the day.

Belt Adjuster Pulley

I was, and still am, reluctant to report that the noise has seemed to be subsided.  It may have been dry or a warn tensioner pulley bearing all along!  I am going to pull the adjustable one to investigate any maintenance possible or look for damage.  It simply may be sealed and I may have been lucky to have penetrated it with the lithium grease.  If I can't sort it, I'll replace it.

However, I have learned about my truck’s Eaton M62 Supercharger, kits I am skeptical about from eBay, and fast pulleys!


Stay tuned for: the “Next Level G-Box Tuned” Mod.

Mark S



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frontierguy
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Posted: Mar 04 2010 at 8:20pm | IP Logged Quote frontierguy

That K&N looks awful dry!!!!! PS nice write up.

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ergomoto
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Posted: Mar 05 2010 at 12:47am | IP Logged Quote ergomoto

Too funny, the K&N does look dry frontierguy, the camera flash didn't help either.  But it's just been washed and oiled before two 800 mile hauls, the second of which I began to hear the phantom grind are under the hood.  Been a while since a detail actually.   

Speaking of phantom grinds, it's back, if at a low hiss now.  Could be that the light duty Lithium grease has burned or warn off, but I still have my doubts that I could have penetrated either the adjuster or idler fan belt/supercharger pulley's sealed bearings.  The local Nissan Dealer has the pulley units, but their relatively expensive, when all I need is a fresh set of bearings pressed in the perfectly good pulley wheels. Off to the machine shop in the AM and replace them out of this equation.

Too funny, when I told the parts clerk that I had a 2003 Frontier Supercharged SE and what I was looking to buy for it, he asked "...Your looking for pulleys for an aftermarket supercharger you installed on your car?" "No, I replied, I'm looking for the stock fan belt pulleys that also service the stock S/C, still boldly announced right on the side of the stock truck."  " I'm gonnah need a vin number for this, he says."  "Cool, it's just out front.  I'll right it down for you."

I tell yah, it's like this supercharger doesn't exists, yet something is making a far amount of racket in there.

Cheers,

Mark S




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Posted: Mar 05 2010 at 7:43pm | IP Logged Quote frontierguy

The Nissan dealer wasn't aware of a S/C Frontier??? That's pretty scary!!

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ergomoto
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Posted: Mar 06 2010 at 3:08pm | IP Logged Quote ergomoto

Yep, but no surprise. Just 'couse they're the one sellin' you the stuff doesn't mean they have any particular knowledge of your vehicle by association.

Which begs the question, beside Courtisy, what other microfiche resource might there be?  I find Courtesy's microfiche to be too generic in their use of one-image-fits-all for specific parts identification, lacking further parts breakdown than replacement parts entail, and outright missing systems -like fan belt pulleys for instance.  I'll be throwing down for the tech CD when I find one from some other resource than the Dealer. Ouch.

I have to say that, now that I have reduced the size of my S/C pulley, I'm glad in retrospect to have changed the oil as well.  Even if I have to go back in after the bearings for a complete S/C rebuild, which is looking more likely as the grinding noise persists, the oil change has to be a good thing as I'm spinning up the S/C that much faster -taxing what is left of the life of otherwise 7 year old bearings.

I've also taken Supercharger1's advise on the "Next Level Performance G-Box Module" to compensate for the stock ATI (Air Temperature Intake) sensor on the 01-04 S/C engine's preset fixed ratio.  That and the new pulley are a real noticeable difference in my daily driving and would definitely recommend.

Which also reminds me, is Supercharger1 still with the forum as a moderator and/or runnin' his upgraded 4x4 3rd generation Eaton M62? 

Mark S





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ergomoto
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Posted: Mar 07 2010 at 2:16am | IP Logged Quote ergomoto

You're not going to believe this frontierguy...

I found a video at YouTube that could be my truck.  The supercharger clearly sounds exactly like mine does now.  It's the guys second rebuilt supercharger and he had the third ready to bolt on when they discovered it was the Knock Sensor all alongNow, why does that sound familiar?

"The noise you are hearing [in the video] is NOT coming from any components related to the serpentine belt system, including but not limited to, drive or idler pulleys. The noise is clearly evident, and is coming from the body of the supercharger where the roots / veins, are located. This supercharger is a rebuilt one, it is the second rebuilt supercharger which has been installed on this vehicle, and the third supercharger has arrived and awaiting installation.... The problem was a bad knock sensor, which causes the SC to go into bypass mode, causing the recirculation of air in the intake. What you're hearing is turbulent air."


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2pfgxfvne-w&feature=relat ed

I have an OBDCOM USB diagnostic program on the way for the shop laptop, as Autozone no longer does free code reads after they were sued by The Pep Boys.  I also understand that the code can be simply witnessed (on Maximas apparently) by manually operating the ECU "Diagnostic Test Mode Selector" and watching the "Check Engine" light -it should pulse in first a number of long flashes, and then short to indicate any code conditions(?)  The whole process is explained at a Maxima thread.

Any way, thought you'd get a kick out of your call on that one!
Mark S



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Posted: Aug 18 2010 at 4:54pm | IP Logged Quote shanester068

The g-mod is nothing
a 40ohm resistor. I
put an adjustable one
from radio shack
works good where is
your boost gauge
hooked up? Someone
told me best place is
intake forum told me
on acumen line by air
cleaner. Pulley swap
made big dif but
sometimes I lose
pressure I think it
bypasses
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shanester068
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Posted: Aug 18 2010 at 4:59pm | IP Logged Quote shanester068

The g-mod is nothing a 40ohm resistor. I put an adjustable
one from radio shack works good where is your boost gauge
hooked up? Someone told me best place is intake forum told
me on acumen line by air cleaner. Pulley swap made big dif
but sometimes I lose pressure I think it bypasses
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thepatriot
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Posted: Jan 30 2011 at 5:58pm | IP Logged Quote thepatriot

Can you tell me where this knock sensor is located and how easy or hard it is to replace? I think I may have th same problem....my s/c is making a rattling noise more evident when first started...after it warms up the noise subsides until there is some slight throttle...them it disappers....but when it scold the sound persist...

Please help..thanks

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ergomoto
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Posted: Jan 31 2011 at 1:35pm | IP Logged Quote ergomoto

The Knock Sensor is nearly centered, directly on the engine block, deep beneath the Super Charger and all other intake.  Very expensive to go in after.  Other threads, and forums have exhaustive topics regarding bypassing the sensor altogether.  A mechanic I now go to, finally found that simply one of my vacuum lines to the Super Charger's "By-Pass Valve" was hardened, cracked, and leaking from under neath and it was responsible for the valve irregularly slipping into partial "Fail-Safe Mode".  It was the coffee grinder noise I was sporadically hearing. 

Attached here are the trucks Service Bulletin pages describing the By-Pass Valve location, function, and this noise -if not the reasons why it's functioning out of order.  I would inspect your lines as well, if this valve, like mine, was actualy the cause of this noise.

Mark S



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