Pitman arm hitting steering arm - JeepForum.com

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  • 1 Post By y2k-fxst
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post #1 of 6 Old 05-21-2016, 07:01 PM Thread Starter
TrailTrash
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1979 CJ5 
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Bay city
Posts: 2
Pitman arm hitting steering arm

Just curious if there is an available 'shorter' pitman arm that I can buy to replace the stock one? Currently, my pitman arm comes into contact with the steering arm under heavy suspension travel.

I wish I could tell you what suspension it's got, but I don't really know. I bought it as it sits, and the guy I bought it from got it on a trade for his travel trailer

Is this a common problem?

This is my first Jeep, I'm a bit of a noob... Wanting to learn

Thanks


Last edited by TrailTrash; 05-21-2016 at 07:13 PM.
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post #2 of 6 Old 05-21-2016, 08:30 PM
y2k-fxst
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1964 CJ6 
 
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Upload picture to a service like photobucket then paste links to them in a reply. Hard to even attempt to diagnose without at least some visuals.
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post #3 of 6 Old 05-22-2016, 07:47 AM
Spieg8
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I'm, guessing that by "steering arm" you are talking about the tie-rod. If the pitman is hitting the tie-rod under suspension flex, that indicates your front axle has moved forward or the steering gearbox has moved back. Before you go replacing the pitman arm with something shorter (yes there are shorter options), you should try to figure out what is going on (agree that some photos would help).

One increasingly common cause of this is if the front springs have been replaced with YJ springs (YJ spring conversions improve ride comfort but also moves the axle forward about 1/2"). While your taking pictures for us, measure how wide your front leaf springs are (2" = stock CJ width, 2.5" = stock YJ width).

Depending on the cause(s) and severity of the contact, you may be looking at replacing spring bushing, and/or straightening the frame, and/or replacing the pitman arm, and/or installing a steering gearbox mount that positions the gear box forward of the stock location.
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post #4 of 6 Old 05-23-2016, 03:46 PM Thread Starter
TrailTrash
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Location: Bay city
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Thanks for the help. Here is a picture of the front end. Yes, it's hitting the tie rod. You can even see the bend in the picture. Also, it has been converted over to YJ springs apparently, as they are a full 2 1/2" wide.

Mark
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post #5 of 6 Old 05-23-2016, 03:55 PM
CrashOdle
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As mentioned, the YJ springs push the axle forward about an inch. I used a MORE steering bracket that pushed steer box forward 1.25 inches to compensate (and strengthen the frame tie in). While a shorter arm may fix it, you'll lose turning radius.
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post #6 of 6 Old 05-23-2016, 07:02 PM
Spieg8
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Wow, that tie-rod looks like it was hit pretty hard.

Depending on your tire size and wheel backspace, a shorter pitman may or may not reduce your turning radius from what it is now. My tires for example are large enough that I already had to adjust the steering stops to prevent tire rub on the leaf springs when turning. In my case a shorter pitman arm stopped the contact with the tie-rod but still allowed the front wheels to turn all the way to the steering stops. Much easier/cheaper to replace the pitman than the gearbox mount.
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