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Unread 10-12-2011, 07:23 PM   #1
Freewheeling
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Bds lift issues on 1979 cj7

I just installed a bds 4" lift on my 1979 cj7. I have 33" tires and when I turn to the left my tire rubs on the front right leaf spring. No problems turning to the right. And ideas would really help. Thank you.

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Unread 10-12-2011, 07:31 PM   #2
gojeepgo
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Did you just add the tires when you did the lift? I would adjust the stops on the steering knuckle. The stops might not have been adjusted properly and you only noticed when you added the wider tires.
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Unread 10-12-2011, 07:43 PM   #3
Freewheeling
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New tires and new lift at the same time. Ya I noticed it turns more to the left then the right. I will give that a try. Thank you for the quick reply.
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Unread 10-13-2011, 06:24 AM   #4
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With the lift the distance between the pitman arm and passenger side knuckle became longer and the drag link effectively became shorter. Your steering wheel should also be off center when the tires are pointed straight ahead.

Because of this you've lost steering radius in one direction and gained it in the other. Adjust your draglink length so that the steering wheel is centered and it should fix the problem.
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Unread 10-13-2011, 06:35 AM   #5
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I agree with CSP. The other thing to look at is. IF the tires are wider you also might need a rim with a different back spacing. I did the same to my jeep. In the end it was either wheel spacers or new rims. I went with new rims with a different back spacing. I did adjust the the steering and the in the end it still rubbed to the left.
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Unread 10-13-2011, 06:48 AM   #6
Freewheeling
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Your correct cps. I do have more steering to one side. I'm new to this and I appreciate the info. I will give that a try. Thank you.
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Unread 10-13-2011, 07:12 AM   #7
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I don't know how the axle can really get off center with leaf springs and still have everything bolt together correctly, but I suppose anything is possible, it is a Jeep... Can you check to make sure the axle is centered under the Jeep? And- did you have it aligned after the lift? If not, CSP is spot on.
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Unread 10-13-2011, 08:32 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BDS-Tech View Post
I don't know how the axle can really get off center with leaf springs and still have everything bolt together correctly, but I suppose anything is possible, it is a Jeep...
I'm not sure why you would think this is the case.

If the OP didn't lengthen the drag link with the lift his steering box (and thus the steering wheel) are off center. No two ways about it. With the steering box off center it runs against the internal stops in the box turning one way and has plenty of room the other way.

There shouldn't be any need for an alignment. Toe-in is the only thing that is adjustable and adding a leaf spring lift doesn't do a thing to change toe.

Once adjusted both sides will probably rub the springs. Larger diameter tires are closer to the springs than smaller tires and it's normal. Once the draglink length is corrected the steering stops on the knuckles can be adjusted.
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Unread 10-13-2011, 08:39 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CSP View Post
I'm not sure why you would think this is the case.

If the OP didn't lengthen the drag link with the lift his steering box (and thus the steering wheel) are off center. No two ways about it. With the steering box off center it runs against the internal stops in the box turning one way and has plenty of room the other way.

There shouldn't be any need for an alignment. Toe-in is the only thing that is adjustable and adding a leaf spring lift doesn't do a thing to toe.
I did not say it was the case. I said it was unlikely.

This drag link adjustment you are talking about would generally be part of an alignment. The steering box itself physically cannot be off center unless the frame is bent- the pitman arm and steering wheel can be off center, requiring a drag link adjustment- which also means that the toe would need to be adjusted. IE- An Alignment.
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Unread 10-13-2011, 08:56 AM   #10
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The pitman arm is physically connected to the steering box. If the pitman arm is off center, then the internals of the box are not centered between the range of the stops, therefore the box is off center.

I didn't mean to imply that the actual steering box as a whole had moved.

It's easy to correct this, rather than paying for an "alignment". This is doing nothing to adjust the steering angles of the front axle (toe, camber, or caster).

With the tires pointed straight ahead remove the draglink from the pitman arm. Turn the steering wheel all the way the right then all the way to the left counting the number of revolutions from one side to the other. Turn it back half the number of revolutions and the box will be internally centered as should the steering wheel. Without moving the tires or the pitman arm adjust the draglink length so that it will attach back to the pitman arm. Done.
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Unread 10-13-2011, 09:02 AM   #11
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I think what he meant with the "steering box off center " was that the pitman arm was not pointing perfectly to the rear when the tires are pointed straight.

I say it never hurts to get an alignmnent after replacing the suspension on a vehicle ....and I'd assume adjusting the drag link would be part of the alignment.
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Unread 10-13-2011, 09:20 AM   #12
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For what it's worth, 85% of the tech calls we get here result from problems that arise in Trucks and Jeeps that have not been properly aligned. Everything from post-lift death wobble to ESP issues and off center axles has been magically fixed by a date with the alignment rack.
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Last edited by BDS-Tech; 10-13-2011 at 09:22 AM.. Reason: spelling
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Unread 10-13-2011, 09:22 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CSP View Post
The pitman arm is physically connected to the steering box. If the pitman arm is off center, then the internals of the box are not centered between the range of the stops, therefore the box is off center.

I didn't mean to imply that the actual steering box as a whole had moved.

It's easy to correct this, rather than paying for an "alignment". This is doing nothing to adjust the steering angles of the front axle (toe, camber, or caster).

With the tires pointed straight ahead remove the draglink from the pitman arm. Turn the steering wheel all the way the right then all the way to the left counting the number of revolutions from one side to the other. Turn it back half the number of revolutions and the box will be internally centered as should the steering wheel. Without moving the tires or the pitman arm adjust the draglink length so that it will attach back to the pitman arm. Done.
So he shouldn't need to set the toe?
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Unread 10-13-2011, 09:42 AM   #14
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Toe doesn't change on a CJ with a suspension lift. The tie-rod is not touched when you swap springs out.

A CJ has a separate drag link and tie-rod. Each has their own holes on the passenger knuckle.
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Unread 10-13-2011, 10:05 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CSP View Post
Toe doesn't change on a CJ with a suspension lift. The tie-rod is not touched when you swap springs out.

A CJ has a separate drag link and tie-rod. Each has their own holes on the passenger knuckle.
lifting the vehicle will absolutely affect both the drag link length and the toe- You have changed the relative distance between the pitman arm and the steering knuckle, which effects both toe, and drag link length- and if you change one, the other changes.

A CJ should have an adjusting sleeve- why would you disconnect the drag link to turn it? Turning the sleeve will allow you to center the pitman arm and the steering wheel and correct the drag link length. And, I really, really, really promise that changing the drag link angle will affect toe- when you move the drag link, the knuckle that it is attached to will move in or out, depending on which way you turn it. How can you move the knuckle without affecting toe?

Even if you remove the drag link, shorten/lengthen it and put it back, the relative distance between the steering knuckle and the pitman arm will have changed, and when that changes toe changes as well.
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