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2003 Discovery 2 SE7
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2002 Land Rover Discovery II SE, 4.0L, 140k miles
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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
Getting my first indications of something rotten - pulled the transfer case today and started working on getting the tranny out, but when I went to remove the torque converter bolts, I couldn't find them. Turns out, whoever last put this thing together somehow managed to hide them underneath the flywheel, not showing through the cutouts like they should be.

The red arrow in the photo I uploaded is the head of the bolt, which is pressed up against the flywheel.
Motor vehicle Automotive tire Automotive exterior Bumper Gas


How bad is it to pull the tranny with the torque converter still mounted to the flywheel? I've read around a bit that it can be done, just might be bad for the seals. Either way, I don't think I have much choice here. Once the tranny is off I can get an open-end wrench in there and start backing off the bolts.

Not sure if this alone could be causing the vibration, but it definitely shows that whoever put this together had no idea what they were doing
 

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You can pull them together i haven't done it on a rover but have seen it. The seal would most likely get damaged when putting it back together. That much weight trying to align things is when seals get damaged. I'd take the transfer and tranny apart after you get them away from the vehicle. Also is this is the second time apart a new seal is a good idea. Sorry for the rambling im sitting here recovering from covid.
 

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Ruffy
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Hi,
Sorry to hear the problems you are going through with your D2. From my own experience in the Australian Outback and online information it sounds like the harmonic balancer. Mine failed in a remote location and required me to truck the vehicle to a service centre.
The D2 has a reputation for these failing. They are not super expensive to buy and can be installed by someone with a good mechanical skill. Just be aware that its failure is not easily visible to the eye. Removing belts to expose the part and manipulating it for distinct wobble should be a conclusive check.
Best wishes,

John
 

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2002 Land Rover Discovery II SE, 4.0L, 140k miles
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Discussion Starter · #29 ·
Long story short, this ended up being a classic flex plate failure
The inner bolt ring completely sheared, which was why the bolts were hidden behind the spokes of the flywheel. Rotated them back into place by hammering on it with a cold chisel, removed the four bolts, and found this:
Automotive tire Road surface Manhole cover Manhole Gas


I honestly don't even know how I was still able to drive it.
Thanks everyone for the help... is there some kind of 'heavy duty' flex plate i can replace this with? This one seems like garbage, but I guess it was still good for 140k miles
 

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2002 Land Rover Discovery II SE, 4.0L, 140k miles
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Discussion Starter · #31 ·
Finally got this all back together and took it for a drive today - the vibration is much better, but it's definitely not completely gone. It no longer vibrates at all when I'm revving it up when it's just sitting in neutral, but now when I'm on the power above ~25 miles an hour there's still some shudder. It's still pretty much undriveable above 65 miles an hour due to that.

There's a lot of vibration coming through the steering wheel, so I'm going to start with replacing the tie rod ends, but after that I'm a bit stuck. I took both driveshafts in a couple months ago, they balanced the front and told me the rear was fine.

Since I'm not feeling any vibration when I'm revving it up in neutral anymore, I'm thinking that whatever is causing it is now downstream of the torque converter, so something drivetrain or chassis related. I'm going to also swap the fluids in the diffs, but I've had diffs go bad before and this is not what that feels like.
 

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2003 Discovery 2 SE7
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Finally got this all back together and took it for a drive today - the vibration is much better, but it's definitely not completely gone. It no longer vibrates at all when I'm revving it up when it's just sitting in neutral, but now when I'm on the power above ~25 miles an hour there's still some shudder. It's still pretty much undriveable above 65 miles an hour due to that.

There's a lot of vibration coming through the steering wheel, so I'm going to start with replacing the tie rod ends, but after that I'm a bit stuck. I took both driveshafts in a couple months ago, they balanced the front and told me the rear was fine.

Since I'm not feeling any vibration when I'm revving it up in neutral anymore, I'm thinking that whatever is causing it is now downstream of the torque converter, so something drivetrain or chassis related. I'm going to also swap the fluids in the diffs, but I've had diffs go bad before and this is not what that feels like.
Do you think the out of balance (destroyed) flex plate may have messed something else further downstream in the transmission or transfer case?
 

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The way your flexplate was im wondering if this vibration was always there but unnoticeable from the flexplate shaking things violently. This may also be why it was difficult to diagnose two diffrent vibrations at the same time are a nightmare. If this is in the steering wheel (felt) and your front drive shaft is good it seems only front axle shafts, wheel balance, or broken band in a front tire. Just my thoughts. Good luck.
 

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Most Discovery 2's with larger wheels or tires than factory also are notorious for vibration between 45 and 50 mph. Mine does it too.
This seems different though. There is some math you can do to figure out resonance frequency of different components and what could be causing this.
 

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Discussion Starter · #35 ·
It's possible, but hard to see how something could be that bad in the transmission or transfer case and not cause any kind of noise while driving, and not happen at lower speeds as well
 

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It's possible, but hard to see how something could be that bad in the transmission or transfer case and not cause any kind of noise while driving, and not happen at lower speeds as well
It doesn't have to. It's all about resonance frequency. I had a car that was smooth as glass until 80 mph, where it started vibrating, and kept getting worse the faster you went over 80. Which was annoying, since I liked doing 85 on the highway in that thing. Ended up being a wheel bearing in that case.
 

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2002 Land Rover Discovery II SE, 4.0L, 140k miles
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Discussion Starter · #38 ·
I got new tie rod assemblies that I'm going to pop in today, but I don't expect that to have much of an effect. After driving it around for the last couple of weeks it still seems to me like there is some kind of rotating mass that isn't balanced properly, and because it only comes on at 25mph and higher it doesn't seem tire/wheel related.

I'm also experiencing TERRIBLE fuel economy. I know these discos are supposed to be bad, but this is probably around 7-8mpg if even that. I've gone 90 miles and burned through more than half a tank. Could this plus the vibration indicate that the torque converter is bad?
If I had a bad injector or injector harness I assume it would throw a CEL code?
 

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I got new tie rod assemblies that I'm going to pop in today, but I don't expect that to have much of an effect. After driving it around for the last couple of weeks it still seems to me like there is some kind of rotating mass that isn't balanced properly, and because it only comes on at 25mph and higher it doesn't seem tire/wheel related.

I'm also experiencing TERRIBLE fuel economy. I know these discos are supposed to be bad, but this is probably around 7-8mpg if even that. I've gone 90 miles and burned through more than half a tank. Could this plus the vibration indicate that the torque converter is bad?
If I had a bad injector or injector harness I assume it would throw a CEL code?
 
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