Re: Wagoneer Questions
When the tranny is in neutral, make sure the vehicle is rolling around 5 mph, and give the lever a firm yank up. If you stop, the gears will grind. There is a neutral position midway on the lever and if you get stuck in it, get the vehicle rolling in neutral or shut off the engine and shift. I had trouble with it at first but you'll get a "feel" for it after awhile.
I assume you're talking about the wheel bearing. It could be a loose nut (easy fix), or a worn bearing or spindle. Check the ball joints and the tie rod ends for looseness too.
The backfire could be a lot of things. It could be a plugged or inoperative egr valve, wrong ignition timing (too far advanced), vacuum leak, carb float level too high, or a stuck valve.