Left front axle shim placement 1982 CJ5 - JeepForum.com
 
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post #1 of 9 Old 09-22-2021, 11:33 PM Thread Starter
1962404Command
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Left front axle shim placement 1982 CJ5

My son and I installed 3/4” lift/tow shackles and a 2.5” RC lift kit along with 31x10.50 tires on our 1982 CJ5.

We measured the front caster and it was 2 degrees positive so we bought 4 degree shims. The shim on the right installed with no issue.

On the left, driver’s side, I am wondering if the shim goes on top of the steering damper mounting plate or below. I think it goes above so the spring pack bolt head can stick up high enough into the spring perch to center it. Curious if anyone has any feedback on this.

I’m also curious if anyone uses a drop pitman arm with this level of lift (cumulative about 3.25 to 3.5 inches, maybe slightly more). The Rough Country lift sure seemed like it lifted it more that 2.5 inches. We bought a drop arm, but now I see conflicting indications for it’s use. Anyone have a view on how much lift is necessary before a drop arm is indicated?

We also purchased 1.25 inch wheel spacers to offset the increased CG. Never used those before.

Thank you.

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post #2 of 9 Old 09-23-2021, 04:37 AM
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I placed my drivers side caster wedge so it sits on top of the steering stabilizer bracket. It is secured with a longer spring center bolt. Mine is an 80 CJ-5 with Skyjacker 2" spring. I used a 4 degree wedge to bring caster to approx 7 degrees. You'll find that the 4 degree wedge will rotate the front axle housing so that the steering drag link is not at a critical angle. At least that was the way it worked for me. Besides, drop pitman arms are not normally necessary for that level of lift.
Hope you and your son enjoy working on your Jeep.
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post #3 of 9 Old 09-23-2021, 05:13 AM
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To me, and probably many others, the degree wedges belong on the spring pack themselves. The steering damper bracket should be on top and right against the axle spring pad.
You can see that the factory location was this way as well. The top of the damper bracket, in the photo, is worn in from the axle pad over time and has rust pits from moisture.
I installed an M6 screw to stop the bracket from shifting since we now have wider YJ type springs, 3inch, up front. The old CJ leaf spring being 2.5inch wide, can no longer keep the bracket tightly in place. The 3° wedge I use is drilled and tapped to M6.


front-spring-steering-damper-2.jpg

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post #4 of 9 Old 09-23-2021, 07:59 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you gentlemen, Excellent information for both approaches. I appreciate you both taking the time to reply and share images.
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post #5 of 9 Old 09-23-2021, 03:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by keith460 View Post
To me, and probably many others, the degree wedges belong on the spring pack themselves. The steering damper bracket should be on top and right against the axle spring pad.
You can see that the factory location was this way as well. The top of the damper bracket, in the photo, is worn in from the axle pad over time and has rust pits from moisture.
I installed an M6 screw to stop the bracket from shifting since we now have wider YJ type springs, 3inch, up front. The old CJ leaf spring being 2.5inch wide, can no longer keep the bracket tightly in place. The 3° wedge I use is drilled and tapped to M6.


Attachment 4009355
The wedge was cut to fit in the bracket and the bracket and wedge are secured by both the center bolt and Ubolts. I really didn't see any problem when I did it. With your YJ spring setup, you should be running a wider bracket.
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post #6 of 9 Old 10-04-2021, 09:21 PM Thread Starter
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Follow Up

Well, we received the four degree alignment shims in the mail and went to work installing them. We used the method as outlined by 80CJ. We needed to get longer bolts to go through the additional thickness of the shim and steering stabilizer mount. The caster now is 6 degrees using my $5.99 Harbor freight angle device.

While we were at it, we replaced the sway bar and downlink bushings with polyurethane. We also replaced the manual steering box, steering shaft and added 1.25 inch wheel spacers. We needed an electric impact wrench and cutting tool to remove just about everything.

The core charge was more than the price of the steering box at O’Reilly. That was a surprise.

Since doing all of this work the steering and drivability has changed tremendously for the better. It is nearly as good as before the lift kit. Down the line, we will look at tie rod ends and an aftermarket steering box mount or support device.

Editorially speaking, we will never add a lift kit to another vehicle. This Jeep drove and performed so much better in the stock configuration; it was also easier to get in and out of. If we were going to renew another CJ5 (which we will do), we would keep it stock, but for adding ARB air lockers to front and back axles and a bigger gas tank. And try to avoid the temptation of bolting on a bunch of heavy, bulky and unnecessary accessories, especially those that overhang the front and back.

Now on to figuring out the carburetor/vacuum line/ignition advance problem. It’s difficult to follow all of the vacuum charts in the manual; even more difficult to figure out which ones to cap since it appears the pollution gear is gone. The Jeep drives fine as it is, but could be improved. We also plan to repaint it with one-part Farm and Fleet Massey Ferguson red (which we happen to have on the shelf). Maybe consider changing the differential gear ratios to a numerically higher ratio than the 4.10 currently in there.

Cheers, and thank you for the help.
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post #7 of 9 Old 10-04-2021, 11:42 PM
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I thinks it's really nice that you and your son have an interest in this project together. Good luck and enjoy your Jeep.
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post #8 of 9 Old 10-05-2021, 06:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 80cj View Post
The wedge was cut to fit in the bracket and the bracket and wedge are secured by both the center bolt and Ubolts. I really didn't see any problem when I did it. With your YJ spring setup, you should be running a wider bracket.

I don't see a problem with your setup either. I just prefer the way the factory did it so if I remove the spring pack, I don't need to disconnect the steering damper to do so. But I would need to take out the M6 screw I put in there to stop it from shifting from side-to-side. I can see your setup for wider YJ springs may be favorable to keep the bracket from shifting since the front edge of the tapered wedge will be encapsulated with the offset of the CJ bracket. But I think there is enough clamping pressure from the axle U-bolts that it would never shift under any load.

The bracket for wider YJ springs is non-existent. YJ's had the bracket welded to the front axle and a center hole on the tie rod, so no spring pack bracket.

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post #9 of 9 Old 10-05-2021, 07:28 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you gentlemen, we enjoy working on it together and learning things. Inputs from forum members like both of you keep us motivated and on task.

As for the method of installing that shim, we liked both options. It was a coin flip as to the method deployed.

Thanks again, and by way, we enjoy reading your posts on other topics in this forum. You guys really have some good insights and experience.
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