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Unread 03-13-2002, 09:50 AM   #1
Rich McCartney
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Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Danville OH
Posts: 2
Cherokee shake

I just bought a 97 Grand Cherokee limited with a 5.2 3" lift and 31" tires. When I decelarate coming down a hill at highway speed I get a bad shimmy in steering wheel. Seems to happen most often when you hit a bump with the right side of the vehicle first. Seems to be alot of play in the steering linkage joints, is that normal? The lift is a custom job consisting of stainless steel blocks above the springs. It was professionally installed. Any ideas what is causing this? Is it do to the lift or another problem? Any help would be great. I have to get this fixed so my wife can use it as a daily driver. This is my third XJ Ilove them.

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Unread 03-13-2002, 03:27 PM   #2
fitzer
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Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Raleigh
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Sounds like a case of the DW (Death Wobble) to me. The DW has alot of causes and fixes. The best thing I can do is point you in a good direction for reference as each case is different.

This forum is in its infancy compared to some others. As a good reference, go to JeepsUnlimitedand do a seach in each Grand Cherokee archive for both "death wobble" and "DW". You will find a wealth of information.

More than likely it is worn front suspension components (ball joints, trackbar ends, etc.) and/or a caster angle issue (you'll read plenty about this on the other site) from the lift.

I have a stock height 93 ZJ with the death wobble. A steering gear adjustment fixed 85-90% of the issue and I am trying to track down the remaining culprit(s).

With some patience, you will be able to find and fix the problem yourself.

Peace....

fitzer
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Unread 03-14-2002, 02:07 PM   #3
JBasham
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Join Date: Mar 2002
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If it only happens when you're on the brakes, I think your rotors are warped. The first two times mine warped, decelerating downhill was the first place I noticed the shimmy.

The only way I beat the rotor problem was to get non-Mopar rotors.
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Unread 03-15-2002, 06:42 AM   #4
fitzer
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JBasham is also correct it could be the rotors if it happens only when braking and without hitting any bumps.

If it happens when hitting bumps it is probably DW. You may want to try riding down a somewhat rough road at about 45 mph - you know the type of road, the one with some manhole covers that are recessed a little or some things you can take at speed - don't do anything drastic!

Moral of story:
Happens while braking - warped rotors are initiating the DW, start by replacing the bad rotors

Happens while driving (no braking) - do a little research to see if someone has a cimilar setup and see how they resolved their issues.

fitzer
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93 ZJ 4.0, Rancho 9000's, Rancho Stabilizer, Splitfire plugs, BFG A/T 235/75/15's
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Unread 03-18-2002, 11:09 PM   #5
Rich McCartney
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Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Danville OH
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Replaced tracbar today. Found play in chassis end. Also added skyjacker steering dampner. No DW up to 65 mph but allignment is off wheels feel like there fighting each other and steering wheel is off almost 90 degrees. Have appointment for allignment on wed. See how that goes. Also took time to add limited slip rear end. Thanks for help.
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