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PlasticBoob 01-13-2008 04:28 PM

Steering question? Tie rods
Let me start off by saying that I know diddly squat about steering.

I have installed a new steering box and rag joint, and I have a drop pitman arm, and I am still getting about 4" of slop in my steering wheel. It seems to be after the pitman arm, but it's hard for me to tell exactly.

My question is, how much play (if any) should there be when you grab the drag link and tie rod and twist it from front-to-back? I am getting a little less than 1/4". The joint from the pitman arm to the drag link also moves this much when I twist it. I haven't greased any of these things in years, so I'm going to try that and see if it helps the steering. :confused:

Crazy_Jeepman 01-13-2008 04:55 PM

Rotation can be quite a bit, and does not contribute to play in the wheel, it is normal. What you need to do: with the wheels on the ground, have a helper turn the steering wheel from side to side to the point that the wheels just start to move (engine off is fine) While helper is rocking the free play in the steering wheel, you watch each tie rod end, on at a time. Start with the drag link Tie rod end at the pitman arm, you should see no play there at all, as soon as the pitman arm moved, so should the drag link, if not, then that tie rod is wore out, continue to the other end of the drag link where it conects to the center link watch that tie rod end for play, then go on to the pass side tie rods end on the center link then drivers side tie rod end on the center link.

PlasticBoob 01-14-2008 03:10 AM

I greased everything up and that seemed to help a little, but I also noticed that my driver's side wheel had play when I rocked it top to bottom! I thought 'no way' since I just did the bearings last year, so I popped it opened and found the second nut somehow came loose! Tightened it back up and the steering feels better.

I did notice some play where the drop pitman arm connects to the drag link, I'm going to start replacing all that good stuff now I guess. Thanks a lot!

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