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Old 03-07-2006, 08:31 PM   #1 (permalink)
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YJ steering issue

developed a problem with the steering on my YJ.

after a recent weekend of wheelin, I had a problem with the steering after getting back on the road to head home.


The steering no longer "seeks center" after a turn. if you turn the wheel to the right, it just stays there. same way in the other direction.


I've not been able to solve this problem thus far.


I've checked the tie-rod/draglink/pitman arm/ lower steering shaft, and nothing is bent as far as I can tell.

the axle is sitting where it should be, so the caster hasn't changed as far as I can tell.

I've replaced the steering stabilizer, and just today installed a new gearbox thinking that was the culprit. still have the same problem, steering won't seek center.

the lower steering shaft is less than 3 months old.

the power assist part of the steering seems ok. albeit a little tighter to turn to the right.



Is it possible that there is a problem in the upper part of the column? is there a bearing in that part that could be causing the wheel to "stick" in whatever position it is turned?

any suggestions?
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Old 03-07-2006, 09:39 PM   #2 (permalink)
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have you gotten the front end off the ground to see how well everything turns?? you may have dammaged a ball joint to the point that it is sticking...
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Old 03-08-2006, 05:33 AM   #3 (permalink)
 
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This may sound stupid but, check the air in your tires too. too low a pressure can keep the steering from recentering. Also, check the steering box bolts and make sure they are tight with the frame.
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Old 03-08-2006, 01:43 PM   #4 (permalink)
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all 4 tires are at 30psi, and the steering box has been replaced, so the bolts are definitely tight.

I'm gonna get it off the ground here shortly.
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Old 03-08-2006, 01:50 PM   #5 (permalink)
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have you checked your alignment?



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Old 03-08-2006, 02:34 PM   #6 (permalink)
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just got done checking the ball joints, no play in them. double checked the TRE's. they are good too.


I'm taking it right now to have the alignment re-checked. I'll see if they can tell me what the caster is sitting at right now too.
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Old 03-08-2006, 02:37 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Based on what you posted above this probably won't help, but, I had the exact same symptoms when I crushed my steering stabalizer.
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Old 03-08-2006, 03:47 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by butch6924
Based on what you posted above this probably won't help, but, I had the exact same symptoms when I crushed my steering stabalizer.

yeah, I've already replaced the steering stabilizer.



alignment results.



Front left

caster 5.2 range 5.3- 7.3
toe before 2.14 after .05 range -.06 to .06


Front right

caster 4.6 range 5.3 to 7.3
toe before -2.21 after .06 range -.06 to .06


so the toe was definitely out, but what bugs me is that the right side caster is below the range by a bit, and the left side is right below the range.

could this be what is causing my problem? what could cause the caster to be out on one side? balljoints???


the problem SEEMS to be at least better since the alignment. doesn't feel exactly right, but its definitely better.
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Old 03-09-2006, 04:11 PM   #9 (permalink)
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anyone else?
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Old 03-09-2006, 04:34 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Are you absolutely sure both joints in that steering shaft move freely. Just last week I went through this with my YJ. Checked the shaft, and the end joint seemed to move fine, ordered and replaced the gear box (replaced a day later). Went to reinstall the steering shaft, and both joints were seized, only moved in one direction. Replaced the steering shaft and my problems went away.
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Old 03-09-2006, 05:46 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OhioYJ
Are you absolutely sure both joints in that steering shaft move freely. Just last week I went through this with my YJ. Checked the shaft, and the end joint seemed to move fine, ordered and replaced the gear box (replaced a day later). Went to reinstall the steering shaft, and both joints were seized, only moved in one direction. Replaced the steering shaft and my problems went away.


yeah, the shaft is a brand new flaming river shaft. just to be sure though, when I put the new gearbox in, I checked the shaft. the joints flex fine.
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