Question about tie rods -
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Unread 07-07-2015, 12:05 AM   #1
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1995 ZJ 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Marlborough, Massachusetts
Posts: 91
Question about tie rods

Now, from what I can surmise based on my FSM, my 95 ZJ Laredo has four tie rods in the front. Two inner, two outer. I'm planning this Friday to get the last of my four new tires installed, and wanted to replace what might be old worn out tie rods as well just before getting the tires.

Having looked beneath my jeep, I can see the four tie rods and steering dampener, and the ones which look the worse off are the two outer rods connected to the steering knuckles. As I don't exactly have the budget to just outright replace all four tie rods (otherwise I'd have replaced all four wheels at once instead of spreading out) I'm thinking if after the cost of tires the tie rods are still manageable, I'll get them.

My question therefore are the ones which follow:

1) While it's only a short drive between here and the tires shop, I'd rather not have them too out of alignment to start. I see alingment is based on a sleeve. Is there a good way to preserve the alingment there already, or is it just basically counting how many times I rotate the tie rods to get out?
1.1) additionally, since I'm replacing possibly both outer rods, should I replace the adjusting sleeve to to be safe, or would that not be needed?
2) when it comes to removing the old tie rods, Ive done them sort of before. What I used to do on my old vehicle (which only had 2, not 4) was twist the castle nut upside down to create a flat surface, then bang at it with a hammer. However, as the jeep has additional ends to be aware of, should I invest in the tie rod removal tool? Or is the hammer trick still okay for budget mechanic?
3) about how long would one estimate the replacement of the two outer tie rods to be? Time wise?

That's it for now. Any advice welcome and will ask more as I think of more

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Unread 07-07-2015, 08:00 AM   #2
Hears the voices
kg6mov's Avatar
1996 ZJ 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Cupertino, CA
Posts: 6,492
Only takes me about an hour to do the steering linkage. I highly recommend tossing the whole enchilada and getting one of these:

Thats much more heavy duty.

A quick tape measure alignment will be fine to get you to the store. Just put the axle on jack stands (so the weight is still on the axle) and set the toe and center the wheel.
1996 ZJ Green Laredo V8, 2.5" OME and Bilsteins, 33's, Holes drilled in the roof.
1998 ZJ Platinum Limited 5.9, Backyard parts fodder
1987 Mercedes 300D Turbo, the diesel daily, 30mpg in style

Originally Posted by Texas ZJ1 View Post
I heard someone yell "mall crawler" from the back porch. I'll go see who said that. Be right back.
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Unread 07-07-2015, 11:35 AM   #3
Registered User
1995 ZJ 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Marlborough, Massachusetts
Posts: 91
Oooh. That does seem nice replacement. Not probably in my budget though for purchase with the tires, but something I could do after the tires and just get another alignment at a shop
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