NV233 transfer case

Mechanic tells me its time to replace the transfer case in my 02 Dakota R-T 4x4. My control on the dash is from what I understand the part-time configuration (2WD/4Hi/4Lo) and therefore its using the NV233 transfer case.
I have checked some out on ebay, can only find used, which is probably a decent option considering the new dealer Mopar part is over $1000 in cost. What I dont understand is why there is no rebuild service available for a unit like this? Most the auto part stores I have checked out localy, say those are my only 2 options. Would it be worth asking a transmission shop to see if they are able to rebuild as opposed to buy used or new?
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A used t case is a crap shoot imo. I'd be looking for a decent rebuilder in your area and have yours done. You'd at least know what you have.
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Right, just surprised that there are such scant results on the web when you search for rebuilt units. I did call an Aamco transmissionshop nearby, and they said they can rebuils the t/c , somewhere in the ballpark of $800.....not sure if that was with labor / installed. They said they have to test drive first before estimataions.

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Another question I have is are these units just destined to fail after high mileage? I got my R-T in 2004 , as the second owner with about 40K on the clock...am up to about 169K now, but I would say almost all of it is in 2WD. When I use the 4WD , its only in the winter to get out of tough spots, or if the roads are really unsafe for 2WD. It was kind of a surprise to hear the grinding noise when I needed the 4WD this winter, because its so rarely used. I suppose the body shop I had the truck at could have switched into 4WD while returning the vehicle to me after some work I had done, and not told me. Before that , one mechanic did say it needed a new frond drive shaft joint, and when he recently diagnosed the T-C as being the cause of the grinding noise, he recommended replacing the entire drive shaft too...which I do not understand, because after looking underneath, the drive shaft looks fine.
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wrote:

Me thinks you need a 'second opinion' before you spend more money. Transfer cases are serviceable (easily) and the only reason to totally replace one is if the chain had broken and cracked the case, or some other totally destructive event happened. If it just grinds a bit, that could be fork pads worn (common) or a similar problem, easy to fix with an overhaul kit.
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Suddenly, without warning, PeterD exclaimed (2/3/2011 8:37 AM):

Agreed. When mine started making ominous noises, my mechanic sent it to a rebuilder, who found nothing more wrong than a needle bearing). Replaced that and all is well.
jmc
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wrote:

Here we go with the noises again!
beekeep
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On Fri, 04 Feb 2011 13:44:32 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@radix.net (beekeep) wrote:

Just turn up the rrickin radio!
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'Rrickin' radio, WTF? Maybe I should have said 'frickin' radio! <bg>
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Suddenly, without warning, PeterD exclaimed (2/5/2011 8:02 AM):

I just figured you were listening to "Never Gonna Give You Up".
(if you don't understand the reference, google "rick roll")
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wrote:

BFG! I can type at almost 100 WMP... Or spell stuff correctly at perhaps 25 WPM!
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I believe the front drive line turns the tranfercase all the time, since Dakota's don't have lock out hubs of any sort. so the both side shafts, differential, and driveline to and including xfercase it always turning when truck is moving. All the button or lever does is hook them together when you need engine to drive the front wheels.
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circuit wrote:

Look for a 4X4 specialty shop or a driveline shop for parts. For a rebuild most transmission shops can do it. About the only special tool needed is a good set of snap ring pliers and a torque wrench. They are not hard to rebuild as long as there isn't major damage.
Why does it need to be replaced? Chain stretch, bearing bad?? Pretty much anything other than a failed case or something like a snapped chain that did internal damage is repairable. They usually go 100K plus with nothing more than a fluid change.
Online places with parts and kits http://www.drivetrain.com /
http://www.rsgear.com /
http://eastcoastgearsupply.com /
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