I am desperately looking for some suggestions on how to fix my steering an handling on my heep. About a month ago I installed a Black Diamond 3.5" lift, Daystar greaseable 1.25" shackles, and 33" X 10.5 BFGoodrich AT TA's. I did remove the sway bars, but kept the track bars. Before I did the lift the handling was great and the steering was very tight.
It does drive perfectly straight, has no drivetrain vibes, and has very very little bump steer.
The steering is extremely loose now and requires constant input for anything. It takes almost a quarter of a turn before the you actually begin to turn and then you immediately have to correct it once you are turning. Constantly steering back and forth like a kid on a play car. I do plan on getting a lowered pitman arm in the next couple of weeks. But what else can you guys/gals suggest to help?
One last note…the bolt hold my track bar extension to the axle housing keeps coming loose. I followed the directions and torqued it down to 135lbs, but it keeps working its way loose. Should I throw some locktite on there or just get rid of the track bars all together? I know a lot about motors and all that, but not much about suspensions to be quite honest.
I am mostly concerned because my daughter and I spend most of our winters driving on some pretty gnarly roads in some pretty foul weather
Assuming your TREs and ball joints are still good... I would definately get some sway disco's and get the sways hooked back up. Again, if the other components are good, then my guess is this will solve most of your problem. Adding a lift w/shackes, will almost always change the steering somewhat, so don't expect stock performance, but doing that and getting the DPA should help.
I would ditch the tracs. I never saw any difference in handling while I had mine, but sways are much more important than tracs IMHO>
'92 YJ, 4.0, 5sp, 8.8 w/ 4.56's locked F&R, Teralow 4-1, HD SYE, BDS 5" SUA lifted on 35 MTR's. PSE front trail cage kit, 1ton TRE flip, 1"shackles, 1"BL, 1" MM. <><
Originally Posted by 80 CHOPPER
Knowledge is a tool, without knowledge, you are just a tool.
First thing, check for worn steering parts. Get underneath and look at everything while someone moves the wheel back and forth. Engine off. Pay special attention to the lower steering shaft u joints and the lower steering column bearing. Nothing should have any play, meaning the wheel moves and the tires move at the same time.
Most would say ditch the track bar and sway bar. I did both, front and rear. But, if your are keeping anything the sway bar is the one to leave on and get quick disconnects for when wheeling. Unless you have a relocation bracket the track bar connected is probably pulling the axle to the left and causing the shackles to not be straight.
And the tall shackle lift almost certainly is the cause of wandering. It will have changed the caster angle.
i would say between the lift and the 1.25 shackles the caster angles are way off causeing the steering to be way off i picked a cj up a couple years ago for next to nothin cause i guy put longer shackles on and was scared to drive it cause the steering was loose. i put the stock shackles back on and all was good.
As the others have said, ditch the lift shackles. Remove your track bars. If you want a bit less body roll, put your sway bar back in and go with disconnects for offroading.
Personally, I don't have sways or track bars. And I'm not alone here. But I know that I don't have a sway bar and I drive it accordingly, living with the little bit of extra body roll. Stiff springs will help in this area, so if you have a nice coushy suspension, I'd recommend staying with the sway bar. My springs are Rancho's, so they're pretty stiff.
White '94 YJ Sport Black '98 ZJ Laredo - 45x60 Surco Rack - 2" Budget Boost, Addco Front Swaybar
My steering was kinda like yours, just felt like it was trying to kill me. Well I performed a TRE flip putting the TRE's over the knuckle. This lifted the bar up and made the drag link pretty close to level and the steering is much much better. So I would say look in my gallery at the first 3 pics and go from there. Did you install a drop pitman arm to level things out some? have you thought about a TRE flip?
Oh yes ditch the track bars.
I have close to the same problems. 4 inch rough country with 1.25 shackles. Track bar keeps coming loose too (I will pull it off and give it a go soon). And yeah it is all over the road. I was convinced that it was a caster problem, but i'm right there at 5 degrees, which seems impossible with my set up and no shims under the shackles, but maybe my perches were relocated by PO???
Everything on my front suspension is brand new. When i run my 34X10 bias super swampers it is really bad. Normally I run 35x12 pro comp ATs on the street and is is a lot better. Also minus the weight of my hard top it handles much better as well.
Anyhow you are not alone out there. And I would never let one of my teens drive it with the swampers it is so bad....maybe with the ATs.
Another issue I ran into which is likely making the steering loose is the fact that with the high angle difference between the drag link and the tie rod, the motion to turn is no longer simply pushing left and right, but also up and down. when the drag link is moving to the right, it first rotates downward until it rolls the tie rod forward and only then actually starts to push out and change the direction of the wheel. It will do the opposite when you turn to the left. You will have lots of "slop" in the wheel while this rotation is occurring. Add to that the loss of camber from the shackle lift and you have a jeep that is none to friendly to drive.
Go to my post http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f12/q...8/#post7504147 to read up on your drop pitman arm choices and try to get that drag link and tie rod as close to parallel as possible. The high steering, tie rod flip is another way to get them closer and as you do, you will see a marked improvement.
Another thing to do to help after that is to get some 2.5 degree steel shims and put them between your springs and your perches with the fat side forward. ( you could also remove and re-weld them but that is a lot more work). you will lose about 3/8" of your lift but it will bring your axle back closer to its original position thereby returning your camber closer to stock. some people hate shims but I put them on mine since I drive on the street a lot and have had no issues and it made a huge difference in road manners...
Originally Posted by unknown
"You know you drive a YJ when you run over a shadow and feel the steering wheel jerk."
Originally Posted by Opihi59
3 Things to know about the forum: Always PB blaster, Always check the FAQ, Always do a search, and if none of that works, ask Mean Max.
Right on guys! YJ-Jer, and all, that is exactly what is happening. I had my wife work the wheel and that was the only play I could see. I am setting some cash aside to get a dropped pitman arm pretty quick I got rid of the track bars and reinstalled the sway bar this weekend. Will also be getting an alignment pretty soon too. Thanks for all the suggestions!!!!!!
A dropped pitman arm will help with bump steer issues but you said that is not the problem. Like most everyone has said it is probebly due to the longer shackles. They cause two problems. The first is the fact that they allow much more movement and lateral flex allowing the entire front suspension to move side to side. The second is castor angle. Front end geometry relies on positive castor angles for stability and steering return when cornering. The more positive castor the better. The long shackles lower the castor angles possibly causing negative castor which will cause the problems you are describing.